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Old 08-10-2007, 10:22 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Best upgrade option for $200

Planning a minor upgrade and looking for best bang for buck, around $200. As in sig, no gaming so the graphics card is not in the running.

Option 1 - Upgrade HD's w/ 2 new 160gb's in RAID for Windows + Apps, and a new 500gb for data.

Option 2 - Upgrade HD's w/ a faster 10k RPM raptor (150gb no raid) for windows and apps and then the same 500gb for data.

Option 1/2 question - would performance be comparable between options 1 and 2? I'm really just looking to speed up apps - photoshop, illustrator, etc. I understand saving/opening relies on the data drive mostly, but general app speed should benefit some from a faster app drive setup, no?

Option 3 - Go from C2D e6400 to 6600

Option 4 - Go from my Sonata2 case, w/ so-so airflow, to a "more windy" case and overclock the 6400.

I need to keep stability in mind, because even with daily backups, I prefer stability over performance to an extent. That said, I'm not trying to get 10 years out of my 6400, so shortening it's lifespan some by overclocking is not a big deal. I realize the raid setup could fail, which is fine since data is on a separate drive.

What do you guys think?
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Old 08-10-2007, 10:29 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

out of your options that you listed the only relevant one is the CPU upgrade and even that isnt going to be too big of a deal.

Hard drives in Raid is really only for that extra boost on an already high performance system. it is not going to give you a noticeable difference with your own eyes for the most part.

Again with the 10k raptor. i have 2 in raid and it is very nice. but nothing to rely on for a performance boost.

More memory would be a good choice that is the best option to increase App speeds.
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Old 08-10-2007, 10:29 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

Option 3 is out, because there isn't a significant difference between the two. If you want to see a difference, than you would go for the Q6600, which is out of your budget.

The Western Digital 750GB hard drives I've heard, are comparable to the Raptor's speed, and you get a ton of more space.
Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD7500AAKS 750GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM


Quote:
Originally Posted by King X13
More memory would be a good choice that is the best option to increase App speeds.
More doesn't mean the apps will be faster. And he'd have to get a 64-bit Windows, to handle more than 2GB of RAM.
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Old 08-10-2007, 10:33 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

If you want to increase your budget a little more you can get a Q6600. You could afford it by selling the E6400.

eWiz.com Intel Core 2 Quad Processor Q6600 2.4GHz 1066MHz 8MB LGA775 EM64T CPU, Retail
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Old 08-10-2007, 10:35 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

^Agreed. That will be the most significant performance boost. And it would be beneficial, since you're into editing.
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Old 08-10-2007, 10:37 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

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Originally Posted by b1gapl View Post
More doesn't mean the apps will be faster. And he'd have to get a 64-bit Windows, to handle more than 2GB of RAM.
Actually More ram does mean Apps will run faster. other wise you would be using 128 meg ram right now.

2nd XP handles 4gig of ram. it is over 4gig you need 64 bit.

im not saying he needs more im saying its an option.
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Old 08-10-2007, 10:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

XP 32-bit technically supports like 3.25GB of RAM, or somewhere around that. It cannot handle 4GB efficiently, in which he would need 64-bit.

And my programs wouldn't run that much faster, if I was to add another gig of RAM.
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Old 08-10-2007, 10:47 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

With Vista I've read all over the net that 4gb is the sweet spot
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Old 08-10-2007, 11:29 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

Thanks guys. I actually have 4gb of RAM, forgot to upgrade my sig, and correct in that windows does not see all of it. I'm switching to vista biz with this upgrade also (have had the disk since jan, so that's not part of budget). Although even vista doesn't see the full 4gb.

I'd consider a Q6600, but I've heard that it's not a huge jump from the e6600, since most apps and windows don't take advantage of the other 2 cores - does vista improve on that? Also, would it be smarter to wait for a TRUE quad chip, rather than intels core 2 duo x 2 on one chip? That starts the endless "wait for the next thing around the corner" cycle though.

It sounds like raid is out, but I only hear good things about it. In what situation WOULD raid be beneficial? Would it really only be worthwhile on a data drive?
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Old 08-10-2007, 11:31 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best upgrade option for $200

Quote:
Originally Posted by regeisle View Post
Thanks guys. I actually have 4gb of RAM, forgot to upgrade my sig, and correct in that windows does not see all of it. I'm switching to vista biz with this upgrade also (have had the disk since jan, so that's not part of budget). Although even vista doesn't see the full 4gb.

I'd consider a Q6600, but I've heard that it's not a huge jump from the e6600, since most apps and windows don't take advantage of the other 2 cores - does vista improve on that? Also, would it be smarter to wait for a TRUE quad chip, rather than intels core 2 duo x 2 on one chip? That starts the endless "wait for the next thing around the corner" cycle though.

It sounds like raid is out, but I only hear good things about it. In what situation WOULD raid be beneficial? Would it really only be worthwhile on a data drive?
well a q6600 would speed u along in photoshop and video apps (the ones ur using)
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