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Old 08-10-2012, 04:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

Hello!

I am a photographer and a film producer and would like to know what my priorities should be when upgrading my computer.

I recently upgraded my computer by purchasing a 512gb Vertex 4 HDD. Applications and transfers from the SD card and saving photos are a snap!

I specifically have to wait about 33+ minutes to encode/render a 2 minute 1080p film. Also render previews aren't the best. A better CPU+GPU would be really helpful! In about 2 months, my budget is going to be is about $1000 and could go up to $1500 if needed be.

I looked online and noticed that the Core i7 990x is about $1000 and was about to make a purchase until I did more research. There's a newer Core i7 3960x for the same price and is "~45% faster than the 990x." I don't know if that's an exaggeration of if the site is credible but it made me think twice.

Right now here are the specs of my computer

Monitor(s):
27" S-IPS Catleap 2560 x 1440
23" Dell SP 2309W 2048x1152

Desktop:

CPU
Core i7 - 920 @ 2.66ghz

GPU (non-crossfire)
Radeon HD 4850 512mb
- Catleap (DVI-D) and Dell (VGA) Attached

Radeon HD 4850 512mb
- HDMI cable for HDTV attached

MOBO
x58 Gigabyte

RAM
18gb ( 3 x 4gb and 3 x 2gb )

HDD
OCZ Vertex 4 512GB (Main with Windows 7 x 64 pro installed)
Cavier Black 2TB
Western Digital 750GB

Power Supply 750w

Applications
Lightroom 4
Premiere Pro CS6Photoshop CS6
After Effects CS6
Sketchbook Pro

Which is the best route of upgrade? I'm looking more in the longer-run high end upgrades rather than a "bang for buck" present fix. I'm willing to pay a premium but if I were to upgrade within the next few months, which should it be?

1) Upgrade MOBO + CPU? (take out the x58 mobo and get a Core i7 3960x)
2) Upgrade just CPU? (get a core i7 990x)

Also with the Core i7, what are the requirements for fans/cooling systems to maximize it's effectiveness?

At this present moment I could probably overclock the Core i7 920, but is it worth it? What should I know?

If you were in my shoes what would you do? Thoughts?

Thank you so much for the response!
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Old 08-11-2012, 08:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

I would look at doing the cheaper things first. overclocking is relatively free.

you didnt mention if you have an aftermarket cooler. if you dont, then that should be a first step. i think noctua makes some good ones.

after that, determine if the programs that you are using benefit from a gpu and have operations off loaded to it. then that would be a lot more cost effective; buying a $400 gpu than a $1000 cpu.
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

I'd always stick to ATI Radeon for GPU for its less temp during operation.
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

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Originally Posted by Jnathan View Post
I'd always stick to ATI Radeon for GPU for its less temp during operation.
I have to disagree with that. It all depends on the heatspreader on the GPU/Memory.
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:33 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

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Originally Posted by Jnathan View Post
I'd always stick to ATI Radeon for GPU for its less temp during operation.
That completely depends on which particular model of Nvidia or AMD GPU you're using, how you're using it, and how good your case's airflow and ambient temperature is. For example, the Nvidia GT4** series ran notoriously hot and loud (compared to AMD GPUs and previous Nvidia GPUs) when it came out. In comparison, the latest Nvidia GT6** series runs exceptionally cool in comparison. It's something that changes often.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

I've never used any Casing for my Mobo, still Nvidia get more heat than Radeons.
I am not undermining the performance of Nvidia though. its just the heat issue.
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Old 08-14-2012, 02:50 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

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Originally Posted by Jnathan View Post
I've never used any Casing for my Mobo, still Nvidia get more heat than Radeons.
I am not undermining the performance of Nvidia though. its just the heat issue.
Please read Yami's post. Heat is not an issue with only NVIDIA cards.
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Old 08-14-2012, 03:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

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Please read Yami's post. Heat is not an issue with only NVIDIA cards.
yah, 1-2-3, 3-2-1
Nvidia has issues. Radeons , I havent seen so far.
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Old 08-14-2012, 03:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Which should be my upgrade priority for CPU+GPU or MOBO?

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Originally Posted by Jnathan View Post
yah, 1-2-3, 3-2-1
Nvidia has issues. Radeons , I havent seen so far.
Both have had their issues and both have had great generations of GPUs. To say any more would be repeating myself.
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