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My current rig is listed in my signature, but put simply its a very common combination of i5 2500K, 8GB RAM and a GTX970.

I currently game on a 24" monitor at 1920x1080. I feel like my rig still performs excellently at 1080P, although I recenlty bought Rise of the Tomb Raider and that is the first game that has really challenged it. The game is still very playabe on near max settings, but I do get frequent dips below 60fps.

The main thing for me is that I feel like I have been gaming at 1080P for over 10 years now and I feel like games in 2017 dont really look better than the orginal Crysis did back in 2007. Am I nuts or is this a common perception? I will admit than Unreal Engine 4 is extremely nice, but games like Witcher 3 and Rise of the Tomb Raider dont 'wow' me like I thought they would graphically.

I think this is because maybe I am more influenced by the clarity of high resolutions than by additional effects like motion blur and ambient occlusion etc.

The main point

I am considering making an upgrade to my rig soon to play at 1440P, or holding out and just making the massive leap to 4K gaming.

  1. I could buy a 1440P monitor for my current PC, could it handle it?
  2. I could get a 1440P monitor and then upgrade the GPU later.
  3. I could get a budget 4K monitor now and run it at lower resolution in games until I can buy a whole new PC (Good investment?)
  4. I could keep gaming at 1080P on my current rig for a couple more years (basically run it into the ground) whilst saving up to buy a whole 4K Rig+Monitor when 4K becomes more mainstream.
Basically I just need some advice on what would be a smart decision for me. I'm keen to see a MAJOR graphical improvement to my games, rather than an incremental gain.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by !TopGear! View Post

My current rig is listed in my signature, but put simply its a very common combination of i5 2500K, 8GB RAM and a GTX970.

I currently game on a 24" monitor at 1920x1080. I feel like my rig still performs excellently at 1080P, although I recenlty bought Rise of the Tomb Raider and that is the first game that has really challenged it. The game is still very playabe on near max settings, but I do get frequent dips below 60fps.

The main thing for me is that I feel like I have been gaming at 1080P for over 10 years now and I feel like games in 2017 dont really look better than the orginal Crysis did back in 2007. Am I nuts or is this a common perception? I will admit than Unreal Engine 4 is extremely nice, but games like Witcher 3 and Rise of the Tomb Raider dont 'wow' me like I thought they would graphically.

I think this is because maybe I am more influenced by the clarity of high resolutions than by additional effects like motion blur and ambient occlusion etc.

The main point

I am considering making an upgrade to my rig soon to play at 1440P, or holding out and just making the massive leap to 4K gaming.

  1. I could buy a 1440P monitor for my current PC, could it handle it?
  2. I could get a 1440P monitor and then upgrade the GPU later.
  3. I could get a budget 4K monitor now and run it at lower resolution in games until I can buy a whole new PC (Good investment?)
  4. I could keep gaming at 1080P on my current rig for a couple more years (basically run it into the ground) whilst saving up to buy a whole 4K Rig+Monitor when 4K becomes more mainstream.
Basically I just need some advice on what would be a smart decision for me. I'm keen to see a MAJOR graphical improvement to my games, rather than an incremental gain.
You're gonna bottleneck a new GPU with your CPU. Not many GPUs can handle 4K the ones that can are uber expensive. I'd run your rig into the ground. Check out Battlefield 1 looks really good.

Personally I think you are barking up the wrong tree. 24 inch monitor 1080P I'd look at increasing the size of your monitor. Buy a used 42" Sony LCD TV (Sony low latency/lag). Nothing like gaming on a big screen and the benefit of 1080P resolution will be apparent. If your GPU has grunt to spare increase the FOV. Something for you to chew over recently I have been gaming on 15.6 inch screen laptop - working away from home - I bought it specifically because that laptop had a 1080P IPS screen. The GPU in it can't handle 1080P and a good refresh rate, so I dropped to 720P. On the 15.6 inch screen you can't tell the difference between the resolutions.

At home I game on 42" inch screen it's the impact it has on you, it's more visceral. Pair it up with some decent active speakers & a sub. Don't be offended but I think your system is a bit clinical, you need to round it out, to make it a more emotional experience, it's like watching a movie on a cinema vs a tablet.
 

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You should look at updating everything. You could do a stop-gap upgrade to something like a 2600k and 980/980ti/1070 for 1440p gaming. The 970 was really a pig of a card...

Nothing less than a 1080/1080ti should be considered for 4k. 4k gaming on a single card is still not here yet. Maybe by the time the new cards launch.
 

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4K monitors + low res is a meh experience, I can vouch for that.
If you want max eye-candy settings + 4K @ 60fps - wait a generation, 4k 60fps on a single card still requires compromises.
A leap from 1080p to 1440p is not THAT massive. Only reason to get a 1440p monitor is for 144hz gaming.
Your current CPU will bottleneck new GPUs.
 

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Seems like you care little for MP games and the 120Hz on your current 1080p monitor, so it makes sense to dump all your budget into a decent 4K monitor and a 1080Ti or GTX 2080 (Volta) in 2018. For a resolution this high, you will be GPU-bound sooner than your overclocked 2500K. I would slap on another 8GB and keep the platform for another 1-2 years, since DDR4 pricing is ridiculous now. When new SP games actually use >4 threads, you can then dump 2500K for good and get i5-8600K or an 8-core Ryzen.

With your use case, focus your resources toward a 4K display first, then everything else into the best GPU you can buy.
 

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Option 4. Run it into the ground, as you said games are still very playable which indicates performance is still great in your opinion. I do understand the upgrade itch is real (I'm in a similar boat, i5 2500k = legend).

I did upgrade to a 1440p monitor a few years ago which gave my system that extra kick in clarity for gaming, great colours.

You may consider an 27" IPS 1440p display as a stop gap, while you save for your a new rig / 4k monitor.

You may even consider saving for the GPU first, buy it and enjoy 1440p gaming at constant 60fps while you save for the rest of your components and the inevitable 4k Monitor / ultra wide.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by !TopGear! View Post

The main point

I am considering making an upgrade to my rig soon to play at 1440P, or holding out and just making the massive leap to 4K gaming.

  1. I could buy a 1440P monitor for my current PC, could it handle it?
  2. I could get a 1440P monitor and then upgrade the GPU later.
  3. I could get a budget 4K monitor now and run it at lower resolution in games until I can buy a whole new PC (Good investment?)
  4. I could keep gaming at 1080P on my current rig for a couple more years (basically run it into the ground) whilst saving up to buy a whole 4K Rig+Monitor when 4K becomes more mainstream.
Basically I just need some advice on what would be a smart decision for me. I'm keen to see a MAJOR graphical improvement to my games, rather than an incremental gain.
Definitely option 4 man. The Coffee Lake CPUs come out in a few weeks and Nvidia has confirmed that the Volta GPUs will not be coming out until at least the 1st half of next year. I personally read that as saying they're aiming for and trying to meet a Q2 release, but who knows how far along they are with R&D let alone fabricating chipsets and wafers.

I would say if you upgrade anything in the short term, I would give it a couple months to save up and take advantage of some nice combo deals around Thanksgiving to upgrade your CPU, MB and Ram. Keep plugging away with 1080p for the next 6 months or so as a GTX 970 is more than serviceable for a few more months. Then save up for however long it is until the Voltas are here and grab your 4K monitor then. It does suck waiting, I'm in the same boat with plans for two new builds, a portable lanbox and an upgraded desktop, but waiting on the new hardware is definitely worth it.
 

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4k is not worth it right now, trust me. Get a 1070 or 1080 and the best 27" 1440p 144hz monitor you can find.
 
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