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Thread: Socket A - Where Next!?

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Socket A - Where Next!?

    Ashamed to admit it but I'm struggling along with a mobile barton @ 2200, 1 Gb DDR-400, and 9800pro @ XT speeds. Somehow I seem to have got myself in an upgrading hole over the last few years by not moving to A64/PCIe based machine. Recently bought 19" LCD (native 12X10) and even more recently BF2, which I have to run @ 800x600. Must stress I'm a casual gamer but hate jaggered lines from such a low resolution.

    Since I'm not made of money my options seem to be;

    1: Upgrade to 939 single core with A64-3200 (£100), new MB (£50-70), and 7800GT (seems the best compromise between price/performance atm @ 195) so that's around £350.

    2: Find Max O/C of mobile barton using new h/s (£20-30) which will probably end up being 2400mhz and buy one of those new - but crippled - 7800GS cards (£220) so that's £250.

    3: Wait till AM2 arrives and bite the expensive but more future proof solution which will cost more like £450 because I'd need new ram as well.

    After spend a bit time on the web it seems to me that because I'd only want to run @12x10 res most of the time that option 2 mightn't be so daft as it first appears.

    Surely I can't be the only one in this hole?

  2. #2
    Yeah dude! NightshadowUK's Avatar
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    Could go for this if you want to spend money over time:
    - ASRock's famous AGP/PCI-E S939 Motherboard - £43
    - AMD Opteron 144 OEM - £113
    - Arctic Cooling Freezer 64 Pro - £17

    Overclock the Opteron to 2.6GHz+ depending on the stepping and keep your AGP 9800XT until you find the right PCI-E card.

    Initial price = £173

    Notes: What PSU are you currently using? / Does anyone know how well the ASRock overclocks?
    Last edited by NightshadowUK; 26-02-2006 at 12:43 PM.

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    Antec 420W HE

    Can you still get 939 opterons?

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    Banned Smokey21's Avatar
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    Id do the first option. AM2 will be a waste of time, mark my words.

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    Senior Member sawyen's Avatar
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    The Asrock is a decent stock speed board.. It clocks OKAYish but even running 2 sticks forces most ppl I know to run 2T.. some running OCZs can push 1T on 2 sticks tho.

    Not that im agreeing, but AM2 really seems rather dumb-ish judging from the performance using a CL4 DDR667. But lets see what happens in March, but im not keeping high hopes.

    Option 1 seems pretty good, or the Asrock route is just fine if you'd like to keep that aging 9800XT.

    Dun bother with the 7800GS, like you said.. its crippled... the 7800GT is crippled enuf, minus another 4pp just means its retarded + crippled.
    Me want Ultrabook


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    Not going to keep 9800 card as it won't let me play BF2 at 12x10.

    I think AM2 will only come into its own until after the 65nm process shrink (2007?) because the clocks at launch are hardly any more than todays 939 solutions (200mhz) and DDR-2 @ 800 won't suddenly boast performance astronomically.

    What really has annoyed me with 939 is AMD reluctance to introduce cheaper 939 Sempron variants and to compound things they keep lopping off the cheapest 939 processors when they drop below £100.

    Looks like opteron 144, new mb, and 7800gt.

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    radix lecti dave87's Avatar
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    just out of interest - with your SoA setup, what heatsink did you use and what were your temps like?

  8. #8
    sneaks quietly away. schmunk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smokey21
    Id do the first option. AM2 will be a waste of time, mark my words.
    4/10, try harder...

  9. #9
    Ah, Mrs. Peel! mike_w's Avatar
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    I intend to wait for Socket AM2, so that Socket 939 prices will fall (hopefully), and then consider picking something up nice and cheap.
    "Well, there was your Uncle Tiberius who died wrapped in cabbage leaves but we assumed that was a freak accident."

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    id also suggest waiting until AM2, its not that far now and it may make prices drop, if it doesnt then you've lost nothing by waiting anyway.

    on the subject of AM2 being a waste of time, you cant tell much from what has already been discussed. Reviews of engineering samples and looking at tech specs can only tell you 20% of the story max. S478 -> S775 for the prescotts = significantly less heat and higher overclocks, now can you tell me 100% that AM2 wont do exactly the same for the A64?

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    Senior Member sawyen's Avatar
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    fair enuf, the engineering board might be duffed.. but I suppose DDR2-800 wont really produce any miracles, probably higher bandwidth.. should stack well against Intel's upcoming chips..
    Me want Ultrabook


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    mutantbass head Lee H's Avatar
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    Don't forget I think it's the F revision of processors on the AM2 socket will infact support DDR2-800. The engineering prototypes they sent out had a few issues with the inbuilt memory controller, but this has now been rectified for when they are launched.

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    Banned Smokey21's Avatar
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    But it's just increased bandwith. have you seen what increased bandwith does for the A64? Very little, it's already got **** loads, with the onboard controller, it's never been an issue.

    AMD need to do somet more.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave87
    just out of interest - with your SoA setup, what heatsink did you use and what were your temps like?
    Using an akasa heatsink that's not very good but my Barton seems to be stable at 2400mhz 1.625v with load temps of around 60degC running Prime95 with hs fan at 2500rpm audible but not too bad. At 4000rpm it was 49degC but couldn't hear myself think.

    Tried at 2500mhz with 1.7v but Prime had errors so back down.
    Last edited by ta5gdu; 27-02-2006 at 06:17 PM.

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    radix lecti dave87's Avatar
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    I've got mine running roughly 40 idle, 45-48 load - under an SI-97 (Thermalright). Wish I'd bought decent ram so i could oc a bit - But that is at stock - 2200mhz (200x11)

    Dave

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    I need a coffee jamena's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ta5gdu
    mobile barton @ 2200, 1 Gb DDR-400, and 9800pro @ XT speeds
    <snip>
    BF2, which I have to run @ 800x600.
    <snip snip>
    Surely I can't be the only one in this hole?
    You're most certainly not ... but then your BF2 issues surprise me! My system is (see left) quite similar to your own, only I'm running an xp2400+ at stock and my 2x512Mb ram is clocked at pc2100 speeds to match the cpu fsb. My 9800pro is also at stock.

    I can, loading times aside, run BF2 happily at 1280x960 on my CRT (hopefully soon get a TFT - gone for the 2005fpw so that I can scale 1:1 if I really have to!) although I do have trouble with CS Source, but I think that game is cpu limited. I need to do some tweaking.

    Make sure your BF2 install is streamlined as much as possible - there's a good tweakguide out there somewhere on deleting the gfx cache BF2 creates, defrag your drive, make sure you really do have all the drivers your system needs (my pc had to run BF2 at 800x600 until I sorted out the motherboard AGP/Gart drivers, now it's great! )

    I'm trying to hold back from upgrading as there's so many intrigueing technologies round the corner like hard drives with a large (256Mb+?) flash-memory cache which should halve access times etc etc. Plus AMD moving to DDR2 support and another new socket type, BTX, too many dead-end paths to choose from for my liking!

    Good luck

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