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Thread: i3 system powerful?

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    i3 system powerful?

    Is an i3 system a powerful one?

    Looking at putting one together for a family relative. They like Intel as they have always had them. Tried to tell them about AMD but they weren't interested!!

    So, an i3 CPU with a good motherboard and plenty of ram be good for most general pc stuff? I have all the rest of the bits and bobs as they are having some of my 'spare' stuff (Case, hd, dvdrw, psu etc)

    They don't have a massive budget but they do want a capable system. The guy does some video editing and is a part-time photographer. He said he only plays the odd game on the pc as he has just bought a PS3.

    If the i3 system is a good one what motherboard and memory would you recommend? Should he go for4gig?

    Cheers

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    Headless Chicken Terbinator's Avatar
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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Well it depends on your budget really as an i5 750 (quad-core) is only £150, for compariosn's sake the dual-core i3's aren't that much cheaper. But yeah, definitely go for 4GB - this will definitely be a help to video editing and touching up photos.
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    for all intents it seems to be the same card minus some gays name on it and a shielded cover ? with OEM added to it - GoNz0.

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    As Terbinator noted, it really depends on your budget. I've never used i5/i3, buy I think you can do a resonable i5 setup with £340, assuming you have a left over case, HDD, DVD-Reader, GPU and PSU as you suggested.


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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Is it worth going the 775 socket route? I quite like some of the CPU's and mobo's etc and the relative is only fussy about intel, nothing else!

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Not really worth it as they're EOL now, their top end quad cores (which is what you ideally want for some photography, photo manipulation and video editing work) cost more than an i5 750.

    I'd go with an i5 750 as it's not that much more than an i3.

    4GB RAM is about the sweet spot for RAM, anymore and it's usually laying idle, with 2GB it'll be slightly too little for the work "he" will be doing.

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    Not a good person scaryjim's Avatar
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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Do you have a spare graphics card? If not, remember that an i5 750 + P55 combination will need a discreet graphics card (about another £25 for an 4350, or £35 for a 5450), while i3 + H55 won't. I wouldn't bother with the i5 600's, they are almost certainly overpriced, but an i3 530 (~ £91) would be a reasonable choice.

    If you have discreet graphics already then the i5 750 is probably the way to go if they insist on intel, but do try again to talk them round to AMD - a Phenom II X4 965 + AMD770 mobo would do pretty much the same job for significantly less money...

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    No graphics card. Forgot about that!

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Quote Originally Posted by golwg View Post
    No graphics card. Forgot about that!
    Get a motherboard with IGP (internal graphics processor)?

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Quote Originally Posted by saman_gh View Post
    Get a motherboard with IGP (internal graphics processor)?
    LGA 1156 motherboards don't have on board graphics. You either have to choose a processor with onboard graphics (i.e. an i3 500 / i5 600) coupled with a H55 chipset, or use discreet graphics.

    @golwg: OK, without discreet graphics the obvious option is the i3 530 + H55 motherboard: you'll be looking at a total cost of at least £160 for those two. The other option, spending a bit more, is going for an i5 750 + P55 motherboard and cheap discreet graphics (e.g. HD4350) for a total of at least £250.

    The issue is, a Phenom II X4 940 can currently be picked up for ~ £110, and 785G or 790GX AM2+ motherboards are available for between £50 and £90, making AMD by far the better value proposition. The X4 940 is a better processor than the i3 530, and the 785G / 790GX graphics sandwich the Intel HD graphics: all have very similar performance. The i5 750 is a better processor, but you're looking at a significantly higher platform cost with both the processor and motherboard being more expensive, as well as the need to buy discreet graphics. So really your relative has to decide whether the most important thing for them is performance or value. If it's the former, then the i5 750 is a no brainer. If it's the latter, than you really need to talk them into going AMD...

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    For most tasks the Phenom II X4 940 thrashes a Core i3 530:

    http://www.anandtech.com/bench/default.aspx?p=80&p2=118

    The Phenom II X4 940 is on Today Only for only £108:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/TodayOnly/Index.aspx

    The Asus M3A78-T is also on Scan Today only for £52:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/TodayOnly/Index.aspx

    This motherboard was over £100 when released and was a high end motherboard with features to match.It has all solid capacitors,an 8+2 phase VRM with cooling and the 790GX IGP with 128MB of dedicated DDR3 on the motherboard.

    Also on Today Only is 4GB of 1066MHZ DDR2 for £68:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/TodayOnly/Index.aspx

    Hence for around £228 you have got a system will destroys a Core i3 530 in CPU performance and has a much faster IGP too.

    If any family member cannot trust your judgement then TBH there is really no point doing a build for them IMHO!!

    What if something goes kaput then??

    Here are some nice budget Intel based Dell systems for under £300:

    http://www.dmxdimension.com/dell-uk/inspiron-560-deals/
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 07-02-2010 at 02:37 AM.


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    A word of warning on the M3A78-T - the shipping BIOS doesn't recognise the X4 940 as standard. I know this as I just built a computer for a friend with the same combination from Scan

    That said, the processor is running at the correct speed and with full cache and everything - it just registers as an "unrecognised CPU" @ 3GHz...

    Downloading the new BIOS from ASUS took forever - they seem to have busy periods when you can't get anything of their servers at all. Then you try 2 hours later and everything flies down. Not done the BIOS update yet: due to the risk of bricking the mobo and it not being my PC You should check if scansure covers you for failed BIOS flashing - if it does I think it'd be worth getting it for that mobo, because you're going to have to flash the BIOS really...

    That said, the combination of the 940 and the M3A78-T works a treat...

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    A comparative Core i3 530 based build:

    Intel Core i3 530 ~ £88

    http://www.scan.co.uk/TodayOnly/Index.aspx

    Gigabyte H55M-S2H ~ £69

    http://www.scan.co.uk/TodayOnly/Index.aspx

    4GB 1333MHZ DDR3 ~ £90

    http://www.scan.co.uk/TodayOnly/Index.aspx

    The total comes to around £247.


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Not sure if i can mention this on here but reason relative wants to go with Intel is that they want to use a Hackintosh on the PC and they have tried it with AMD but failed. They were told that Intel setup works very easily as opposed to AMD.

    I have also tried AMD / Hackintosh with no success but works fine with Intel hardware!!

    If i am wrong in posting this then please remove. Thanks

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Oh you want it to run a "Hackintosh" that's naughty

    You have to pay moneys to mr jobs or he'll kill kittens
    http://www.misco.co.uk/applications/...013&CatId=2995











    But of course if you're sane, then do some digging and find out which hardware works best with a hackintosh and that's what you should look at gettng

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Quote Originally Posted by golwg View Post
    Not sure if i can mention this on here but reason relative wants to go with Intel is that they want to use a Hackintosh on the PC and they have tried it with AMD but failed. They were told that Intel setup works very easily as opposed to AMD.

    I have also tried AMD / Hackintosh with no success but works fine with Intel hardware!!

    If i am wrong in posting this then please remove. Thanks
    Your never guaranteed for it to work and as far as i know Apple don't currently produce any i3 systems - i also don't know if that topic is allowed here.

    An i3 system would easily suit your needs, its like a suped up Core 2 E8xxx really which lets be honest aren't slow coupled with acceptable on-board graphics.
    Kalniel: "Nice review Tarinder - would it be possible to get a picture of the case when the components are installed (with the side off obviously)?"
    CAT-THE-FIFTH: "The Antec 300 is a case which has an understated and clean appearance which many people like. Not everyone is into e-peen looking computers which look like a cross between the imagination of a hyperactive 10 year old and a Frog."
    TKPeters: "Off to AVForum better Deal - £20+Vat for Free Shipping @ Scan"
    for all intents it seems to be the same card minus some gays name on it and a shielded cover ? with OEM added to it - GoNz0.

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    Re: i3 system powerful?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pob255 View Post
    Oh you want it to run a "Hackintosh" that's naughty

    You have to pay moneys to mr jobs or he'll kill kittens
    http://www.misco.co.uk/applications/...013&CatId=2995

    But of course if you're sane, then do some digging and find out which hardware works best with a hackintosh and that's what you should look at gettng
    I did tell my uncle to buy a Mac but he complains they are too expensive.

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