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Advice on upgrades please.

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hi all. I've been on here for a while now but forgot username so started again. I've got my bday coming up and asked for a little money to upgrade my current pc. It's.
800watt pus
Alive xfire esata 2 rev 3 mobo
Phenom ii x4 940 BE @ stock
Gtx 280 @ stock
2x2gb ddr2 800 ram
Samsung 2333hd monitor
Rest is pretty standard.

I'm going to get around £200 and I want to upgrade now to enjoy bad company 2 in dx 11 also for future releases.

I have been he'll bent on getting 2x 6850 as I've read they scale very well.
Then discovered the 6950 can be unlocked to 6970 with bios flash so was interested in that.
Then I've looked into my kobo supporting x6 am3 CPU with bios update so....

I was wondering if anyone out there had any advice on which way to upgrade?
Do I get the 200 sell my phenom 940 and gtx 280 for around 140 (ish) and buy amd phenom x6 CPU and put a little towards it and get 6950?

I'm upgrading now so I don't have to when battlefield 3 comes out.

Is the ram going to hold me back?...

Do I stick with nvidia?...

I'm not just being lazy and getting other people to do the work for me vie had my head in my phone for a few weeks at home browsing forums and to be honest my wife is sick of it. Lol!

Any advice will be most appreciated.
post #2 of 11
The X6's wouldn't get you much of a performance increase, if any, in most games and your current CPU should be fine for most games anyway.

I wouldn't go with crossfire 6850's either. While they scale very well, a single card leaves you with more upgradability. You would have to sell your 6850's in the future when you wanted to upgrade your GPU whereas if you bought a single 6950/70 you could just buy another one later on down the road for dirt cheap and be set for another couple years. Also, ASRock doesn't state whether the second PCIE slot runs at x4, x8, or x16 so it's hard to tell if you'd have a severe bottleneck doing Crossfire on that board.
Unlocking the 6950 could be a bit risky. Supposedly, it has messed up some people's cards but it's up to you. You could also look around on Newegg for open box items. About a week ago there was a GTX 570 going for about half off.

Exactly what PSU and RAM do you have?

And why upgrade for BF3 now? It won't be out until Fall and the longer you wait, the more prices will fall. If that's the main reason you're upgrading, wait until you've played the Beta a little to see how your performance is and see what's holding you back.
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post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Good advice there. Thanks. I can't remember make of psu but it's 800 watt. Ram is DDR 2 800. Have 4 gb of it. I do play some other games. Only reason for upgrading now is I have wife and 3 kids so money will end up getting used on something else unless I get it straight away. I'm looking for a gpu that will handle dx11 games good for at least 1yr maybe 2. I didn't think CPU would be bottleneck or ram really. I can always go to 8 gb fairly cheaply as I have 2spare slots left.
I noticed metro 2033 struggles a bit on high settings on my setup but I'm guessing it's the game as it's very demanding.
Gtx 570 does look good and i've always been nvidia. Like the drivers but don't like the insane heat generated and also extra cost usually for the card in the first place.
post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steviep1981 View Post
Good advice there. Thanks. I can't remember make of psu but it's 800 watt. Ram is DDR 2 800. Have 4 gb of it. I do play some other games. Only reason for upgrading now is I have wife and 3 kids so money will end up getting used on something else unless I get it straight away. I'm looking for a gpu that will handle dx11 games good for at least 1yr maybe 2. I didn't think CPU would be bottleneck or ram really. I can always go to 8 gb fairly cheaply as I have 2spare slots left.
I noticed metro 2033 struggles a bit on high settings on my setup but I'm guessing it's the game as it's very demanding.
Gtx 570 does look good and i've always been nvidia. Like the drivers but don't like the insane heat generated and also extra cost usually for the card in the first place.
You can open up the side of your case and take a look at the model # of your PSU. Reason I'm asking is to ensure that it's reliable and that it actually has a good power output.

I believe Metro is also TWIMTBP title so it plays better on Nvidia cards anyways.

I would get a 6950/6970 or a GTX 570/580.
The performance goes about like this:
6950<6970 6970=570 All<580

There's a GTX 570 for 290 USD. Not sure how much that is in pounds though. Also, it only has a 90 day warranty and doesn't come with any accessories but still a pretty good deal I think.
http://www.evga.com/products/prodlist.asp?switch=20
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(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Phenom II X3 740 MSI 770-G45 XFX HD 6850 G.Skill Ripjaws 4GB DDR3 1600MHz 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Seagate Barracuda 1TB Windows 7 64-bit Hanns.G HW191A SeaSonic X650 
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HAF 912 R.A.T. 5 
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post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Cheers for that. Psu is a stable one. I bought one equivalent for 120 dollars. G7 I think. So you think the phenom ii 940 and ram will be ok if I have a top end gpu?
I did think this as bad company 2 is the only game that I've really played which pushed my pc over it's limits but the Vietnam add-on run a lot smoother.
From reading into it they didn't optimize it for pc as much as port it across from console when it was optimized for xbox then ported to ps3 and pc so pcs struggled unless they were high end spec.
Going on that assumption. They will make battlefield 3 a smoother and less demanding engine? I hope. Lol.
Crysis 2 was the same for my system. It runs a he'll of a lot better than crysis did for me with no upgrades.

I do like the gtx cards but they give out so much heat. Only gripe with nvidia.

I'll have a look at new egg but not sure if they ship internationally.
post #6 of 11
Bad Company 2 is very CPU intensive and if you have anything less than a quad core it's practically unplayable(trust me, I've tried it.) You can test if your CPU is bottlenecking you right now. Download and run AMD's System Monitor and then play BC2 for a few minutes. Then alt+tab out or close the game and look at what your CPU/GPU usage was at. If your GPU usage is 90-100% then your CPU isn't bottlenecking you. If it's at 50% then your CPU is severely bottlenecking you. I would guess that your CPU isn't a bottleneck but I could be wrong.

However, your CPU is almost guaranteed to bottleneck you if you were to get a 570 since it's high end but I think overclocking your processor could help.
With that said, if you were to get a new CPU your only choices would be the X6 or Intel and going with Intel would end up using all/most of your money because you would have to get a new mobo and CPU and that wouldn't help nearly as much at your resolution unless you were going SLI/Crossfire. And the issue with the X6 is that almost no games use 6 cores so it's pointless to buy it.
Here's a good article to show what I mean: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...ce,2619-5.html

Also, I can't imagine your RAM bottlenecking you in games but don't quote me on that.

And as for BF3, it's all speculation until the Beta sadly.
Rescue 1
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Phenom II X3 740 MSI 770-G45 XFX HD 6850 G.Skill Ripjaws 4GB DDR3 1600MHz 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Seagate Barracuda 1TB Windows 7 64-bit Hanns.G HW191A SeaSonic X650 
CaseMouse
HAF 912 R.A.T. 5 
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Reply
Rescue 1
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Phenom II X3 740 MSI 770-G45 XFX HD 6850 G.Skill Ripjaws 4GB DDR3 1600MHz 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Seagate Barracuda 1TB Windows 7 64-bit Hanns.G HW191A SeaSonic X650 
CaseMouse
HAF 912 R.A.T. 5 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
That's great thanks. I really didn't realise that it doesn't make too much of a difference at higher res with CPUs. That link was perfect thanks. It's finally stopped me thinking of selling one of my kids for an i7. They're good but to most of us money is an object and we can't afford to have the best of everything.
One more question though. Do you think x6 would increase recording with fraps? I'm guessing it should as I could set affinity to use one or 2 cores with fraps and it would still leave a quad core portion for game to run off.
post #8 of 11
Is this your board ?



I wouldn't chuck an x6 into that, you'll pop it.

Also the PCIs slots are not PCIe 2.0 compliant and they run at 8x PCIe which is the equivalent of 4x PCIe 2.0 which is going to be a problem if you introduce top end cards.


AMD 480X CrossFire™ Chipset

AMD 480X CrossFire™ is AMD’s mainstream class Multi GPU platform solution. In multi-GPU (CrossFire) system configuration with two ATI Radeon™ graphics cards, this advanced chipset pumps an exceptional bandwidth of up to 2 GB/s to each GPU, delivering incredible graphics and blistering performance. AMD 480X CrossFire provides incredible flexibility and unlimited upgrade potential as it supports all Radeon™ PCI – E graphics cards on a system configured for either single GPU or CrossFire operation. Designed with AMD’s unique architecture to optimize speed and stability, this solution is perfect for overclocking – without the need of additional cooling systems.

Superior Performance

Unrivalled bandwidth from the 2x8 PCI-Express chipset in its class, AMD 480X CrossFire Chipset delivers superior performance.

Delivering up to 2 GB peak bandwidth to each GPU

__________________________________________

Add to this, the highest CPU support for this board is a Phenon II x4 965 BE. So that's the thubans out. Check it out HERE

Also the highest support for GPU's is 4870's and Catalyst 8.7. Also HERE
Edited by smash_mouth01 - 4/18/11 at 7:50pm
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks again. It was a cheap mobo when I got it. But would this be ok for 1 top gpu and current phenom 940? Been looking at 5870 on ebay. Some run out fairly cheap. Then I could stash probably £100 away for starting a new build over the next couple of yrs. I really want New build but it's costly. Better a 5870 and 100 cash left over then a 6950?
You've been a big help thanks by the way.
post #10 of 11
I don't even understand how you run the (also 125W) Phenom II x4 940 on that
It's a visibly cheap, prebuilt quality even (no solid caps), 3+1 phase design, not nearly adequate for any 125W processor

An x6 is slightly more TDP heavy, throwing it on that board would be a ridiculously bad idea
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