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Old 02-17-2013, 02:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

Hey all-

Long time no post! Sold a beauty of a laptop to get back into the desktop world in November. Had a tight budget of $1,000 to include monitor+speakers. Here's what came out of it for the tower, (EDIT: I buy from one or two locally owned family stores, not online)-

- AMD FX-6300
- ASUS M5A78L-M
- DDR3-1600 8GB Kingston (Just replaced with 16GB of Crucial Ballistix)
- GTX 650
- Corsair 650W
- WD 1Tb Black
- 2x 2TB WD Reds I removed for my NAS to go virtual

Can't really complain for all around performance. For an entry level build I was surprised with how well it ran SWTOR, Saints 3, Planetside 2, even Metro 2033 is playable at 1080p. Biggest gripe is how she does in video encoding. BDMV to MP4/mkv is painfully long.

So here's the deal, I'm looking to do a solid 200-300 for it. Used primarily for audio-video encoding/gaming/server. What's used for the most depends on that given week. One week I'll game for 20+ and the next I'll do nothing but encoding.

I miss having an SSD but CPU or GPU should come first to it. Currently I'm torn between grabbing a GTX 660 or stretching for an i5/i7 and selling my current mobo/cpu to offset what I can. Maybe even an upgraded video card and SSD for boot. Next upgrade can't happen for at least a year as my girlfriend would destroy me.

Thoughts?
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Old 02-17-2013, 02:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

Depends on what really is more important. If you want to game better you need to ditch the low end card.

If this was me (and I do a lot of the same with my PC) is I would buy a nice cooler and OC the crap out of the FX to make it honk. Try to remember, the 6 core is more like a tri-core with a more physical HT. That's why you aren't getting the performance in encoding like you want. OCing should offset this quite a bit. Something like an H80i or H100i. Expensive but cheaper than buying a whole new motherboard and processor. This coming from a guy who tries to squeeze an Intel into every build unless an APU just is a better fit.

Next, I would buy a nice video card, sell the 650, and buy at least some form of SSD for booting and main programs. 120GB SATA2, or 60GB SATA 3. Either would be way faster than a standard HDD for anything.
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Old 02-17-2013, 12:30 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

Thanks for the quick response! I've ran through those a few times my head. Here's what I'm thinking-

-H80 w/Corsair Neutron 240GB, for OCIng and space for OS w/ my most used.
-$200 GPU w/ an SSD for $100
-$200 GPU w/ H80
-$300 i5/mobo

I'm picking whatever I choose tomorrow AM. Thanks for the input man, much appreciated.
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Old 02-17-2013, 12:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

Well the cooler + GPU will give you better production from CPU OC + better gaming performance.
The SSD will give your whole computer an overall boost in performance. Remember, you still have a 1TB you can use for programs and such. If you have a large Valve folder you can leave it on the 1TB and your games will still be seen. There are only a couple of games that take advantage of loading speeds from an SSD. They mainly boost the snappiness and quickness of your PC all around rather than specific things. That being said you could easily get a 120GB and be fine while leaving much larger things to the 1TB.

As of right now I'm not sure the i5 swap would be necessary. You would see faster speeds, but since what you got is already decent enough a more logical jump would be to the 3770k from there.

If you can stretch it, an H50 + 120GB SSD + GTX 660 would be a big jump everywhere. Idk what cooler you currently have though.
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Old 03-28-2013, 12:48 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

So it ended up taking me a bit longer to get around to getting some new parts haha! My last mobo decided it didn't want to have the PCI-E slot work anymore, so that sort of jump started the upgrade train.

Ended up getting a Kingston 240GB SSD/Cooler Master V8/ Gigabyte 7870/ ASUS M5A99X and I couldn't be happier. Running at 4.4Ghz right meow, ( above 4.4Ghz I'm not comfortable with the voltage and temps) and between that overclock and upgrades it feels like a whole new machine, I'm getting a constant 80-90FPS in Bioshock Infinite on Ultra at 1920x1080.

Aside from another SSD for more game space, sound card, and some some 4TB HDDs to replace my two 2TB WD Reds for storage I'm def going to be set for awhile.

I just got hired on with a major technology giant so I'll be upgrading by the summer time to a much more viable CPU/MOBO/ SSD combo
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Old 03-28-2013, 02:25 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

Infinite is UE3 and hasn't really changed much since Bioshock 1 so I would hope you get good frames with a 7870 lol.

I would get a 4770k and Z87 motherboard when you get the oppoortunity.
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Old 03-28-2013, 12:10 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

Most definitely will, maybe even a Xeon, just depends on if their employee discounts are like they were in ten years ago.
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Old 03-28-2013, 01:26 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

Just remember you can't OC the Xeon.
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Old 04-08-2013, 03:30 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

(See my sig for my current set up)

What a pain this is turned into. Long story short, had myself my mixed drink sitting on my desk with my panels off of my case so I could admire the hardware. GF and I were kicking around her yoga ball and sure enough it knocked over my drink EVERYWHERE. Unplugged the comp and turned off the power supply. Dried everything out and booted her back up. Success I thought!

Then it shuts down while I was in the BIOS. Overclock failed and it wouldn't detect two of my drives. Since that faithful Friday night I've experienced oddities. Two bad SATA ports, can't have my second video card in as it won't POST half the time, wouldn't POST with more than one DIMM occupied half the time. I was able to get into Windows with both video cards and was able to run OCCT, FluidMark, and MemTest with no problems. But this morning I'm back to the having more than one DIMM occupied it won't boot problem.

Now I get to drop $$$ on a new mobo I won't use in a month from now anyway. I tell ya, KEEP YOUR SIDE PANELS ON. Or just don't kick a ball around or drink around it with them off. Either/or really.
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Old 04-08-2013, 03:35 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Returning to the hardware game and upgrading.

I seriously am not trying to be rude, but that whole situation screams no common sense
I bought an 18oz Thermos for my coffee just to have it sealed since I have a little one. I have no used open cup or soda can near my PC since he started crawling around.

The problem here is, anything and/or everything could be damaged in some way, not just the motherboard. If you have a spare machine you need to test each part individually in it like the GPUs, RAM, HDDs, PSU, ect.
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