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Thread: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

  1. #17
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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Ok, I've just realised I can only get 4Gb for the money I''ve got.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    If you are not going to overclock then 800MHz is fine;
    If you are not going to upgrade, then get 4 x 1GB and save some money;
    If you do want 8GB in the future then get 2 x 2GB.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    First off why the adverse reaction to overclocking? With the Q6600 you will easily get 3GHz at stock voltage and with after market cooling will probably have lower temperatures under load than at stock speeds with the stock heatsink and fan (I would have an after market cooler even if you are not going to over clock). This is also very easy to do and people here will be happy to talk you through it. Oh and I add my vote to the quad core over duel core issue for future proofing it makes far more sense.

    Now onto the memory ignoring DDR2/3 for a minute and thinking about what the numbers mean, to have a Q6600 at 3GHz you require a FSB of 333MHz (1333MHz quad data rate) so for memory at double data rate (DDR) you need at least 667MHz. Now getting faster memory is possible but it tends to have higher timings/latencies so DDR2 800MHz may have timings of 4-4-4-12 while DDR2 1066MHz has timings of 5-5-5-15, the advantage of these higher specified memory though can be that if your willing to play with the timings you could have the 1066MHz memory running at 667MHz at timings of 3-4-4-8 for example, or at lower voltages.

    Now onto the DDR2/3 issue you would be much better served to buy 4GB of DDR2 now for ~£100-150 than 2GB of DDR3 for in excess of £200 (for the same level of memory you could get at the DDR2 level you would be looking closer to £350). The motherboard will also be cheaper, and if it only lasts you 2 years rather than the 4 (or it may last the 4 who can say!) you would expect in 2 years DDR3 prices will be significantly lower and you will be able to get a new motherboard and memory then and even if it costs you the same over the 4 years you will be buying into more mature products (at both upgrades) which give better value and stability.

    So my recommendations would be as follows,

    CPU: Q6600 (~£160 or £155 OEM)
    CPU Cooler: Thermalright Ultima 90 with S-Flex 1600 120mm fan (~£30)
    Motherboard: X38 (your pick I havn't looked at reviews or used them to suggest one) (£130-£200)
    or P35 Abit IP-35 or Asus P5K(~£75)
    Memory: 4GB of Any good low latency DDR2 800MHz (CL4) or 1066MHz (CL5) (£100-£200 depending on speed)
    Graphics: ATI 3870 (£150)
    PSU: Corsair HX620w (£85) or HX520w (£63)

    I think that covers everything you initially asked about and comes in at ~£580 to ~£800 depending on what you pick.

    EDIT - All prices from Scan you may find cheaper elsewhere

    I hope this helps and my explanations of why I have picked particular speeds etc. make some sort of sense.
    Last edited by Webby; 20-11-2007 at 04:42 AM.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    I also suggest going quad core especially if you intend to keep it for 4 years. I've been arguing in other threads that quad core, at current price, is not necessarily the better choice unless you frequently do some intensive multitasking. But I was assuming a 12-18 months upgrade cycle. Beyond that, I highly suspect that most CPU intensive applications will utilise enough of the two extra cores to overtake a higher clocked dual core on their own.

    However, I do not think that your scoring system work. Dual core is usually not twice as fast as single core, again, unless you stress each core to the max. Currently, a fairly well optimised dual core game is about 60-65% faster than single core (assuming no GFX bottleneck). Similarly, quad core is only about 12% faster than dual core even in the modern Unreal 3 Engine. Some applications do scale better than that, but it's still a far cry from what the boost from single -> dual core. But I would expect that 4 years from now, single applications will be able to get 65+% out of those additional cores. Not quite double, but worthy.

    When it comes to motherboard, if I was planning to stretch for 4 years, I'd want eSATA built in just in case. That probably means having to go for a motherboard in the £100-ish range than £70-ish.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Video editing, especially Hi-Def, is very processor intensive and hence loves multiple cores and large amounts of RAM.

    I'm a committed "bang4buck" shopper and my advice would be to apply a little more delay cream and stay with what you've got until January. Then I'd build a system around Intel's new Q9450 Yorkfield processor. The Q6600 is currently set at $266 (per 1000 price). The Q9450 will be $316. So here in the UK you should be able to pick up this 2.66GHz 12MB cache 1333MHz FSB bad boy for around £175-£180.

    Can open, worms everywhere!
    Apparently, "Do whatever you like" should NOT be considered authorisation to build my uber rig!

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by Toobad View Post
    I'm a committed "bang4buck" shopper and my advice would be to apply a little more delay cream and stay with what you've got until January. Then I'd build a system around Intel's new Q9450 Yorkfield processor. The Q6600 is currently set at $266 (per 1000 price). The Q9450 will be $316. So here in the UK you should be able to pick up this 2.66GHz 12MB cache 1333MHz FSB bad boy for around £175-£180.

    Can open, worms everywhere!
    The worms crawled back in mate. If something's $316, then it'll be £200+ here.

    Quote Originally Posted by tickleonthetum View Post
    Ok, I've just realised I can only get 4Gb for the money I''ve got.
    The motherboard you specced only has 4 RAM slots anyway, so unless you'd went for 4x2GB then you'd not fit 8GB in anyway. The sticks you specced were 1GB each (4 packs of 2x1GB).
    Last edited by this_is_gav; 20-11-2007 at 10:39 AM.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    for the system you've stated you won't be upgrading for 4 years or so. intel are going to change their socket next year with nehelam architecture. thats means your new motherboard will 'only!' be able to handle penryn quads at it's max. (dependant on motherboard). that should be plenty, but who knows what will happen in 4 years! 2011! phew.

    amd currently is more compatible with future architecture. new phenom processor can sit, i think, into am2 and am2+ sockets as well as forthcoming am3 sockets. differences are hypertransports and a few other bits and bobs.

    even though performance isn't as stellar as intel, amd probably have the system that can carry longest, 4 years is quite a long time in the computer world.

    it might be worth considering it, thats all.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Wow, this is a lot to take in!!

    I've tried to convince my wife to allow overclocking for a while now and she will not budge. I think it's the fear of burning out a £300 CPU that panics her. Especially as we would not be able to afford to replace it and would be left computerless. She is the one funding this upgrade so she gets a big say in the parts and is just computer savvy enough to smell a rat if I got the Q6600 to try overclocking! I don't know, the things we put up with for love! LOL.

    I have to plan this so that it will still be usable if I can't upgrade for 4 years. I would probably be able to get some extra memory, but not £300 worth of processor, after a couple of years.

    For reference I will be running XP Pro 32 bit, until the next MSOS comes out as we don't think a lot of Vista after trying the Beta (and it is a rip off at the price their asking), and MS reckon the next one will be due late 2009 anyway, or so I read. Unless you all think Vista is the way to go?

    The Q6700 was listed on Scan as £318 so it sounds like the newer Q9450 will be about the same price, so I see the sense in waiting for that. I can see that Quad Core is the way to go now that you've explained it. It seems to be that a Quad Core 2.66 would be about as fast as my single cor 3.06 when using old games/apps, but will be much faster when sing multi core optimised software in the next couple of years.

    It's the memory that is really confusing me.

    Let's assume I will wait and get a Q9450, an X38 motherboard an ATi 3870 PCIe 2.0 Card and a suitable PSU, won't be overclocking and XP limits me to a maximum of 4Gb of memory. So what is best thing for me to do? Should I get DDR2 M/B & 2Gb RAM and upgrade to 4Gb in 2 years time, or will I be able to replace both the M/B & RAM by then to get DDR3 (assuming the CPU etc still fits by then). Or would it be better just to go for 2Gb DDR3 now and replace them with higher latency DDR3 in 2 years time. Sorry if I seem thick!

    It sounds like you all agree that it would be better if I waited until January before buying anything as there is quite a bit of new stuff due out. Scan'll love you for that LOL. I'm using Scan by the way as this will have to be got on their Finance scheme.
    Last edited by tickleonthetum; 20-11-2007 at 06:40 PM.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by tickleonthetum View Post
    The Q6700 was listed on Scan as £318 so it sounds like the newer Q9450 will be about the same price, so I see the sense in waiting for that. I can see that Quad Core is the way to go now that you've explained it.
    I think the Q9450 will be $315 when released so maybe even cheaper than that. Mind you ripp off Britian and all that who knows

  10. #26
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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    I'm a little puzzled. Firstly because your current kit doesn't look 4 years old to me, and secondly because no-one has really made the point that 4 years is not the optimal upgrade time.

    I'm not going to beat around the bush, 1 year is for those with money to burn, 2 years is ideal, 3 is a push and by 4 the computer will seem like a slug on tranquilisers.

    My suggestion would therefore be to buy relatively cheaply today and upgrade in 2-3 years. That strategy would dicate DDR2, and probably just 2Gb, because XP32 will not make full use of 4Gb. It would also dictate probably an AMD chip if you won't OC. This would be a cheap basis for your purposes, and allow you to spend the same amount again in 2 years time. Over a 4 year period you would definitely be better off than what you're proposing.

  11. #27
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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    THe problem with motherboards is that you can't really future proof them. You can buy a top of the line board - but if the manufacturer changed sockets then you're screwed.

    Personally I'd go for a Quad and try and get hold of an 8800GT. Other than that - nice system

    Oh and forget DDR3



    Edit: If you're so bothered about future proofing - then quad is the only way to go.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    My M/b, RAM, Memory and Graphics Card were bought at the same time in July 2003.

    I have pretty much decided to get the Quad Core Q9450, X38 based motherboard with PCI-e 2.0, an ATi HD3870 PCI-e graphics card and a PSU in Jan/Feb 2008.

    What I still can't decide on i whether to get DDR2 or DDR3, and if DDR2 whether 800 or 1066?

    The CPU, Motherboard and Graphics Card will almost certainly not get upgraded for 3-4 years, so the only thing I am likely to replace is the memory. So allowing for that and that the prices/latencies of DDR3 will come down, would that be the better choice? I'm thinking along the lines of in 2 years time I could get 4Gb of much lower latency DDR3 for a much cheaper price. I find the understanding the memory techno babble the hardest, what with FSBs, DDRs, latencies and what-not?!

    Can anone say what the AGP ATi equivelent is to my AGP nVidia 6800 GT 256Mb? Looking at TomsHardware I make it the X1650Pro? Baring in mind that the charts are for PCIe and I'm talking about AGP...
    Last edited by tickleonthetum; 20-11-2007 at 09:42 PM.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by tickleonthetum View Post
    Can anone say what the AGP ATi equivelent is to my AGP nVidia 6800 GT 256Mb? Looking at TomsHardware I make it the X1650Pro? Baring in mind that the charts are for PCIe and I'm talking about AGP...
    Sounds about right. Perhaps the 6800GT would be faster in older stuff, but the X1650 would handle the new instructions (shaders and things) much better. Probably somewhere between a 1950Pro and a 1650Pro, more towards the 1650Pro.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    GPU & CPU are major factors in the gaming performance - stretch your budget on the GPU is always worthwhile imo. Grab a 2nd best card @ £200-250 is usually a great start. Buy the CPU that is sitting below the big price jump ie currently Q6600 or E6750 as it stands at the moment. You now have a reasonable balanced combination and good value.

    Everything else is a minor factor in performance. GPU is king and CPU is queen then plug them into something that will make them work. That's all there is to it for somebody who doesn't overclock.

    Future proofing is just a timing thing. Buy early in the release cycle and you have the potential to upgrade.

    Upgrading is also simple. Don't leave it too long. Change the CPU, graphics card and add more RAM at 18-24 months. At the end of 4 years your PC will be pretty avarage but OK.

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by tickleonthetum View Post
    I have pretty much decided to get the Quad Core Q9450, X38 based motherboard with PCI-e 2.0, an ATi HD3870
    *drool*

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    Re: Going to upgrade, thoughts anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by ed^chigliak View Post
    GPU & CPU are major factors in the gaming performance - stretch your budget on the GPU is always worthwhile imo. Grab a 2nd best card @ £200-250 is usually a great start. Buy the CPU that is sitting below the big price jump ie currently Q6600 or E6750 as it stands at the moment. You now have a reasonable balanced combination and good value.

    Everything else is a minor factor in performance. GPU is king and CPU is queen then plug them into something that will make them work. That's all there is to it for somebody who doesn't overclock.

    Future proofing is just a timing thing. Buy early in the release cycle and you have the potential to upgrade.

    Upgrading is also simple. Don't leave it too long. Change the CPU, graphics card and add more RAM at 18-24 months. At the end of 4 years your PC will be pretty avarage but OK.
    Good sound advice.

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