I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sat Mar 15, 2014 12:02 pm

The Egg wrote:If money is tight, I'd have a hard time recommending an SSD on a gaming PC.

Well yes, but by OPs own admission he's really not that much of a gamer and just wants to "get back into the swing of things". Getting a new PC today without an SSD is not really getting back with it IMO.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:24 am

At the risk of boring you all...
I thought I was going to buy something this weekend but it seems I will put if off for a bit.

Graphics
I investigated AMD offerings. After putting some more research into my options, I think the GTX 750 Ti is definitely what I will get due to its balance between lower power consumption and performance. The only choice now is between brands and whether to get a 2-fan model or a card sporting one fan. I'm caring less and less about brands and finding a 'stock' unoverclocked card and at this point just want to buy something...

CPU
I looked at the i5 models and the top dogs are quite expensive (~3GHz and higher). Looking at the cheaper i5 models...I wonder if saving a bit is worth it. Then I make eye contact with this lovely Pentium G3420 for ~$70 USD http://www.amazon.com/Intel-Pentium-Pro ... B00EUVHMR4 ...saving me a cool ~$190 Australian dollars over one of the top i5 models, and probably with a lot less NSA features built-in too and with lower maximum power consumption too...and it's still roughly double the speed of the ancient CPU I am running now (E2160), which I guess isn't saying much...and it uses Socket 1150 so I can plop in an upgrade if I am not satisfied with the Pentium at some later date. So I am a bit conflicted. I don't know if an odd ~200 is going to be something I am going to be happy spending since I can always upgrade if I'm not happy with the cheapie. So yes, I am really considering the Pentium. I remember I made a similar decision with my current machine (choosing a Pentium over the expensive Core models) and I didn't regret it, but then again I didn't play as many games as I could have (and am going to do now). Plus the fact that I normally wait until games have been discounted well after their initial release...so it isn't 100% imperative for me to play at the latest blockbusters at maximum settings. I guess I'm trying to justify the cheapie to myself. With these prices, I can see where some of the overclocking lust comes in. For some reason, many years ago I started to feel CPUs were a bit of a commodity item and the other stuff was more special. I guess I've never totally stopped thinking like this, even though I'm probably way off base judging these tech marvels like this...

RAM
I browsed a bit more on Amazon and settled on Crucial Ballistix ram with tighter timings than the Kingston sticks I was looking at earlier http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Ballistix ... B006YG9EEW . 8GB x 2 (total 16GB) seems to be the sweet spot as far as dollar per gigabyte value goes, though I doubt I will make use of 16GB, I seem to have no issues spending here. If there are no objections I'll probably get these.

PSU
I am also considering this (cheaper) Enermax PSU http://www.amazon.com/Enermax-ATX12V-Po ... 00512HSGQ/ which seems to go for a lot less than the Corsair I chose earlier.

I recently found out that Amazon.com don't send Asus or Gigabyte stuff into Australia...and also some Intel processors can't come here too...while oddly allowing others. This is fairly common on Amazon for Australian users. But it takes the fun out of putting in a big order over the weekend, I tell you.

Anyway, just some of my thoughts.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:48 am

twups wrote:CPU
I looked at the i5 models and the top dogs are quite expensive (~3GHz and higher). Looking at the cheaper i5 models...I wonder if saving a bit is worth it. Then I make eye contact with this lovely Pentium G3420 for ~$70 USD http://www.amazon.com/Intel-Pentium-Pro ... B00EUVHMR4 ...saving me a cool ~$190 Australian dollars over one of the top i5 models, and probably with a lot less NSA features built-in too and with lower maximum power consumption too...and it's still roughly double the speed of the ancient CPU I am running now (E2160), which I guess isn't saying much...and it uses Socket 1150 so I can plop in an upgrade if I am not satisfied with the Pentium at some later date


I'll give you my opinion and you can do with it what you will: Don't get the Pentium. The G3420 is a dual core without hyperthreading - so that's two threads total. It's got less cache, too. I recommend you think long-term on this purchase, because looking at CPU advances and attending software over the last four years: things are slowing down. Do this next CPU purchase with the long-term in mind and it could be a decade CPU. Make a short-term choice and five years from now you might regret it - you'll want a CPU with more threads and you'll have to go to ebay for an upgrade; you'll end up spending about as much money, but you'll be using a slower CPU for five years in spite of that, and you'll have caused yourself more hassle.

I recently purchased an i5 4670 and I expect it to last at least five years. Given the current rate of 5% - 10% speed bumps each year, in five years the i5 4670 will still be respectably competitive with any of the new processors at that time. Also, the ability of consumer software to make use of faster and faster CPUs is tapering off.

If $250 seems like a lot to you, then you and I use similar economic scales. I spent $170 U.S. on my i5 4670 and I didn't like doing it, but three, four, five years from now I'm going to appreciate the continuing return on the investment - similar to to how I have appreciated the ROI I got out of my previous Phenom II X4 955 that lasted me for four years. And even then, I only upgraded because my dad needed a new system, so I could have kept going with the X4 955. So the moral of the story is to think long term. The i5 processors are the bang-for-buck champions. Ask anyone who got an i5 2500 a few years ago if they regret it - they're still nipping at the heels of today's new i5 processors!

As for motherboards, I used to prefer Gigabyte, but I've switched to Asrock for the last few years (doing builds for the company I work at) and I have not been disappointed at all. Very stable, nice features, usually cheaper than comparable Gigabyte or Asus.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:06 pm

By selecting only cheap low-end components, you will not get a system that meets your primary goal for starting this thread.
twups wrote:I am overdue for a system upgrade. I could use some pointers to get a system that is fairly low power draw but suitable for most games at medium-high settings. I'm way out of touch with what's happening in hardware land.
Even if a low-end system did satisfy you initially, its performance would become obsolete and require replacement earlier than a mid-range PC would.

Get a quad-core processor. Dual-core CPUs cannot handle modern games well. This will only get worse in the future.

Get an SSD for your operating system. Even the slowest 120 GB SSD is two orders of magnitude quicker than a hard-drive.

You can save money by dropping down to 2x4 GiB of memory. If your head hasn't exploded from using just 2 GiB now, you're not going to notice a difference between 8 GiB and 16 GiB in the new system.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:17 pm

Graphics
An R9 270 only consumes ~17 Watts more under load than a reference 750 Ti (that means the maximum power draw difference is 12%).

CPU
I would say it is much, much easier to replace a GPU than a CPU, especially if sockets change (which tends to happen with Intel). A Pentium paired with a decent GPU will probably give you "good enough" gaming performance in the short term, but if you plan on keeping this system for some time and play future games, it might be worth it to invest a little more to get a stronger CPU up front so you can more easily upgrade in the future.

RAM
If you are looking to stretch a budget, getting 8GB RAM instead of 16GB is a better way to stretch your dollars than skimping on a CPU or GPU.

SSD
I suppose you could save money by sticking with mechanical, but the technology is basically proven and reliable, and it will improve system performance.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:39 pm

The G3420 is a very appealing product, it's power consumption and 'bang for buck' factor are unrivalled. It has really good single thread performance, almost the same as an i5-4440 (in synthetic tests), for most games out now single-thread performance is still what counts most. FPS performance is very good which proves the point, the processor keeps up very well with even the i7-4770K (which has higher clock speeds, more cores and more threads), I didn't spot any frametime analysis though it's likely a bigger differential.

While that's true the trend for games at this moment is towards multi-threading, which the G3420 is poor in due to the low core count. The reasons for this trend are twofold; CPU single-thread performance has levelled off in recent years - in spite of die shrinks - so demanding games must look to extra cores for performance, more significant however is that the latest consoles have a high core count (8) but poor single thread performance (~1.7GHz Jaguar cores) so even games which aren't all that demanding are pushed towards being coded for multiple threads.

The G3420 will be fine for the majority of games which are already out, CPU bottlenecking is likely to be a problem for many titles due out this year and beyond which are ported from consoles though. I can't say how bad the bottlenecking might be as at this moment it's an unknown.

An i5 would guarantee good performance in the latest games for the next few years but if you don't mind limited performance in a few games that are already out or limited performance in futures games to save some money the G3420 is a valid risk on a budget. The fact that it fits the 1150 socket limits the damage as you can always upgrade.

That said I would not splash out on 16GB of RAM over a quad-core processor. It does perhaps make some sense for general use since you are sticking with an HDD (I wouldn't do that either), but from a gaming performance perspective a stronger CPU offers a lot while more RAM offers almost nothing.

I'd also opt for a Corsair over Enermax, but again that's a price/risk assessment.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:43 pm

Just throwing this out there, but if you really really want to pinch some pennies and prolong the usefulness of your system and are willing to get your hands dirty, your motherboard may support the LGA 771 Xeon to LGA 775 socket mod. You could get the Xeon equivalent of a Core 2 Quad Q9650 for less than $50, with 10 minutes of tinkering and a $2 item from ebay.

Obviously you'd still be on an older platform, but the performance increase would be huge and would match a GTX 750 or 750 Ti very well.

Just thought I'd mention it. =)
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 1:04 pm

superjawes wrote:I would say it is much, much easier to replace a GPU than a CPU

Oh, heck yes it is; good point. A less-than-GTX-750-ti would still be a huge upgrade over a 9600 GT, and the savings could be put toward the CPU. Still, best outcome would be staying with the 750 ti and still getting a better CPU, which leads me to....

If you are looking to stretch a budget, getting 8GB RAM instead of 16GB is a better way to stretch your dollars than skimping on a CPU or GPU.

Another very good point. OP even said himself he won't likely use 16 GB (and he's right - anyone who needs 16 GB will know for a fact that they need it). So why - given the limited budget - spend money on something that will go unused? Get 8 GB of RAM and put savings into CPU or GPU.

SSDI suppose you could save money by sticking with mechanical, but the technology is basically proven and reliable, and it will improve system performance.[/quote]
Yes; SSDs are a huge performance upgrade over mechanical.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:31 pm

ozzuneoj wrote:Just throwing this out there, but if you really really want to pinch some pennies and prolong the usefulness of your system and are willing to get your hands dirty, your motherboard may support the LGA 771 Xeon to LGA 775 socket mod.


Thanks I hadn't heard of this. I just spent the last 3 hours researching it and have now bought a pair of E0 X5460s on ebay for a bargain price. I might even get all my money back from selling the Q6600 and spare X5460. I hope I can get one of the X5460s past 4GHz, this G0 Q6600 never broke 3.6GHZ which was disappointing. Wish me luck!

But if it all goes tails up it at least gives me an excuse to do the i5 system upgrade that I really want. :D
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:31 pm

If you are ready to take the plunge on a new build, you should really check out the most recent Tech Report system guide, as recommended. Also, providing some kind of a ball park budget for what you want to spend would help with recommendations.

As far as which core i5 to go wtih, I recommended getting the cheapest Haswell i5 you can find. Paying extra for a faster clocked version won't get you any noticeable gains for casual usage and gaming. If you like Amazon, then this is what you'd be looking at.

For the video cards, the 750 Ti is a good place to start. If you're will to sacrifice a bit of efficiency for a bit more performance, a GTX 660 is a consideration. While the 750 Ti offers better efficiency on paper, I doubt the difference in the hit on your utilities bill will be noticeable.

Amazon currently has Samsungs's EVO 250GB SSD for $140, which seems like a pretty good deal to me. Would make for an excellent boot drive, while having enough room for a few games.

I'd recommend pairing this with an H87 motherboard (should be able to find one with all the features you need for <$100) and 8GB of 1600 MHz ram.

You should be able to find an 8GB kit of 1600Mhz ram for around $80. Such as this

And you may want to get yourself a half decent power supply (this might be a decent starting point - should be sufficient for your needs). Whether or not you need a new case depends on what you're working with now... If it were me, I'd probably upgrade the case as well. But there are plenty of decent cases that can be had for around $50. (For example...)
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:12 am

Finally, the guts of the decision-making is over!

GTX 660 it is! :)
(Gigabyte dual fan model)

I chose it over the more efficient and slightly slower GTX 750 Ti. If I really hate the heat or fans, I can sell it.
Since nearly all dealers/manufacturers are overpricing the GTX 750 Ti a little (It's supposed to retail at 150, right?), I decided on the GT 660 for a few bucks more instead. It sucks far more power though. I stil don't know if I can live with it, but we'll see.

Now the little matter of the CPU.
Well...
You know...
I umm...

I ordered a Pentium G3420 :D
I honestly think it will do me fine for the next 1-2 years at least. The benchmarks are pretty impressive for gaming (most games). I won't be doing much encoding or anything like that, so I'm OK with its performance and I know it's weak in apps that use more cores. I'm ready to be burnt at the stake now but I think it's perfect for me. The way I look at it, we should be getting NSA rebates on the i3 and i5 :)

RAM. I got 8GB of Kingston Blu (after noticing 9CL 4GB x 2 set as opposed to the 10CL 8GB x 2 set...and bigger discounts over the Corsair Vengeance).
PSU. Enermax 450W PSU. I'm curious to see how it performs...it appears to have the necessary PCI-E connectors for the card and I hope it's not a featherweight cheapie. I'm prepared to risk it.
No mainboard or case yet but I'll be waiting for the Pentium anyway (it's an in-demand item you see...) so I have at least a couple of weeks to get that. I could have bought some things locally but there is no rush.

I'm just glad the guts have been ordered.
1TB 'ye olde friend' spinning platter HDs will be ordered locally, despite insistence on SSD.
Thanks for all your help. Now time for a late-night victory sandwich and a stretch. Eyes are popping out...
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:41 am

Looks like you'll be alright. Should have gone with an i3 CPU but the G3420 will still be faster than what you have. Enjoy!
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 12:54 pm

That should be fine for just about any game. Games that handle multithreading, and newer games would likely run better with an i3 or a Quad core, but it is hard to beat the price of those Pentiums. I guess the only way to know for sure if you "need" a quad core for your uses is to start with a dual. ;)

The 660 should be a great card though. I replaced a GTX 560 Ti 1Gb with a 660 last year (mostly because my MSI 560's fans were making horrible noises) and it has been a great card. I haven't done a whole lot with it, but the power consumption is surprisingly low at idle. I can't remember the exact numbers but I know the last time I checked, my system was pulling around 60 watts at idle with an i5 2500k (quad) at 4.2Ghz, 8GB DDR3-1333, GTX 660 2Gb, 1Tb Samsung F1 and a Crucial C300 64Gb SSD, all running on a 6 year old OCZ GameXStream 700W PSU. Its hard to ask for more power efficiency than that honestly... :)
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 1:32 pm

As someone that has worked (day job) with SSD's since the first ever consumer models existed, and spinning platters long before that, I would stake my job and reputation on today's SSD's (from vendors with enterprise validation) being more reliable than any spinning disks available.

As long as you get an Intel or a Samsung drive, the failure rates are around 5x lower than most mechanical drives, and they have a lower DOA rate caused by damage in shipping too.
Even in the roughest patch in SSD history (Sandforce SF-2000 series bluescreens) every vendor except OCZ kept their failure/return rates in the single-digits, which is in line with Seagate/WD's track record for spinning disks.

To re-iterate that: SSD's at their very worst were still no less reliable than mechanical drives. Today's SSD's are an order(s) of magnitude more reliable and a machine not using an SSD for the operating system just feels awful. Once you've used an SSD machine, it's agonising to go back to spinning disks beacuse the different is so obvious.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:45 pm

ozzuneoj, with noisy fans...one thing you can do is take their stickers off and usually under the sticker there is a hole where you can insert a drop of oil. Reseal the thing with tape after doing that and it should be back to normal. Though you probably don't want to use that card now :) Often they just use cheap fans with no ball bearings to save a few cents and it's always disapponting to see that. Power consumption of the 660 at load was my main concern (ie. hours of gaming). At idle it should be good as any other and that doesn't worry me much. On the upside, the Pentium processor is a fair bit less on the watts at load, but then it does less work ;) So at least we have some balance. I'm actually excited about getting my little Pentium. I was actually tempted to get the GTX 760 until I saw the power consumption of the card at load. If it sipped similar levels of juice as the GTX 660 I would have bought it. I still feel half-guilty for not getting the 750 Ti because I consider low power usage a sign of advancement and fantastic work by the guys at Nvidia, but oh well.

Chrispy_ As someone who has dropped a hard drive and had all his data go bye-bye, I have no arguments with SSDs being more shock resistant. But for a stationary machine with careful installation with no shocks, I still like platters. Plus they are far (far!) better value to me and I could use the extra storage (on the cheap). No doubt at some point we'll reach unlimited write life nirvana though it wouldn't surprise me if that was being held back on purpose like things have been in many other industries (to keep the re-consumption going).
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Mon Mar 17, 2014 11:16 pm

twups wrote:ozzuneoj, with noisy fans...one thing you can do is take their stickers off and usually under the sticker there is a hole where you can insert a drop of oil. Reseal the thing with tape after doing that and it should be back to normal. Though you probably don't want to use that card now :) Often they just use cheap fans with no ball bearings to save a few cents and it's always disapponting to see that. Power consumption of the 660 at load was my main concern (ie. hours of gaming). At idle it should be good as any other and that doesn't worry me much. On the upside, the Pentium processor is a fair bit less on the watts at load, but then it does less work ;) So at least we have some balance. I'm actually excited about getting my little Pentium. I was actually tempted to get the GTX 760 until I saw the power consumption of the card at load. If it sipped similar levels of juice as the GTX 660 I would have bought it. I still feel half-guilty for not getting the 750 Ti because I consider low power usage a sign of advancement and fantastic work by the guys at Nvidia, but oh well.

Yeah, I've been oiling PC fans for almost 15 years, but the fans on MSI's Twin Frozr II that my 560 Ti had were sealed. I remember finding a website where a guy showed how to crack them open with a knife, but he also broke a few in the process, and the fans for this thing were expensive and used a proprietary connector (two fans with connector) so you couldn't even replace them with a similar generic fan. I attempted it but gave up in favor of just getting rid of it.

It only had problems when it was cold, but I live in a place that is commonly below 0F in the winter, and my computer room may be in the 40s to 50s at times due to the age and poor insulation of our house... so it was awful. I sold it to someone in a warmer climate and they've been perfectly happy. I actually broke even on cost of upgrading to the GTX 660 because I sold the bundled game credits on eBay as well. :)

Oh, and my 660 has the stock EVGA nvidia-designed cooler. After the mess I'd gotten into with the MSI TwinFrozr (generally praised as the best cooler design at that time) I just wanted something that never wore out. I've never had one of the blower style fans (not sure what they're actually called) have bad bearings or need oiled, and that includes my 8800GTX that I've had for more than 7 years... my goodness, can you believe they're that old already? :oops:
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Tue Mar 18, 2014 1:17 am

ozzuneoj wrote:Yeah, I've been oiling PC fans for almost 15 years, but the fans on MSI's Twin Frozr II that my 560 Ti had were sealed.

That sucks. I hope that's not indicative of what I get with the Gigabyte GTX 660. Though doing a quick search online, there are heaps of people with fan noise problems on othe model I just bought. Oh no. Fingers crossed.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Tue Mar 18, 2014 8:32 am

twups wrote:Power consumption of the 660 at load was my main concern ... I was actually tempted to get the GTX 760 until I saw the power consumption of the card at load.


Power consumption at load never bothers me unless the machine will be running at load continuously. Power consumption at idle - where components typically spend most of their lives running - is far more important to me. At idle, the 760 and 660 are close enough to the 750 ti for me to call it "close enough".
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Tue Mar 18, 2014 2:20 pm

twups wrote:Chrispy_ As someone who has dropped a hard drive and had all his data go bye-bye, I have no arguments with SSDs being more shock resistant. But for a stationary machine with careful installation with no shocks, I still like platters.

Yeah I think you missed the crux of his argument there

twups wrote:Plus they are far (far!) better value to me

I.. uh.. what we are collectively trying to get through to you is that SSDs actually present a *better value proposition* than HDDs. Sure, when you're scraping the bottom of the barrel to piece a budget gaming PC, it might make sense to get an HDD instead, but for all other scenarios you are shooting yourself in the foot if you don't get at least a small budget SSD for your OS. It's blindingly obvious that you've never had the pleasure of booting up and using a PC that has one, because if you did you'd have seen the added value immediately. That's why friends don't let friends buy a PC without one these days.

twups wrote:and I could use the extra storage (on the cheap).

No argument there, you can have both you know.. I guess you could still get an SSD to complement your HDD later on, but when you do, you'll look back at this thread and wonder why the hell you've waited that long.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:33 pm

He's leaping forward from 2008... to 2009. :(
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Tue Mar 18, 2014 8:14 pm

I didn't really want this thread to become about SSDs, but since the component choice is out of the way (thanks guys!), let me clarify my (stubborn) SSD position further :)


Firestarter wrote:Yeah I think you missed the crux of his argument there

Not at all. Reliability was a major thing in his post. I simply addressed that point. I am aware about the speed arguments. I am aware of SSDs. I have used them.

Firestarter wrote:I.. uh.. what we are collectively trying to get through to you is that SSDs actually present a *better value proposition* than HDDs. Sure, when you're scraping the bottom of the barrel to piece a budget gaming PC, it might make sense to get an HDD instead, but for all other scenarios you are shooting yourself in the foot if you don't get at least a small budget SSD for your OS.

I think I said earlier that I find my current system perfectly responsive, so that tells you something about how important an SSD would be for me in this rig. My main goal is simply to improve graphics gaming performance so I can play more modern games more effortlessly.

To put things in perspective (and to get my point across further), even if an SSD were the same price and size as a platter drive, I'd still choose the platter drive. No, I am not making that up. Yes, I am serious. I simply don't trust SSDs to my data for the longer-term. In a portable device SSDs have more use to me since their shock resistance and reported lower power use is great, but even then...no thanks. Platters for me. I trust them more. So my particular distrust of SSD outweights any and all advantages SSDs bring to the table. Reliability is something I love and if I don't trust the tech on a long-term basis (rightly or wrongly), forget it. I felt the same way about the Zip drive (remember those?) before the famous Click Of Death became an issue.

Firestarter wrote: It's blindingly obvious that you've never had the pleasure of booting up and using a PC that has one, because if you did you'd have seen the added value immediately. That's why friends don't let friends buy a PC without one these days.

Friends should understand their friends better :)

Actually I have used SSDs, touched SSDs and seen the improvements made with Windows 8 regarding logging off, waking from sleep, app responsiveness too. I've seen the changes with and without SSDs. Just because I have lost touch of the finer points of graphics hardware doesn't mean that I haven't actually used modern devices :) And despite seeing what they bring to the table, I still don't find the value compelling for my particular system. Since I find regular hard drives more than fast enough for my uses.

Firestarter wrote:No argument there, you can have both you know..

I could but would I want to? Becasue I can get thousands of other things insead (camera, phone, etc), or simply not spend anything at all. I regard them as a total waste of money at this point and (only speaking for myself) find their value extremely low. So in that sense I am not in agreement with (perhaps) most enthusiasts. Same with overspending on CPUs for little gain in my usage; I will buy what will do the job and not overspend on what won't. The industry changes fast enough as it is and I don't believe in looking too far into the future to 'future-proof' myself. Though in reality I can spend more, I don't see the point (for my uses). I usually buy what I need (or a little more) but not much else when it comes to computers.

Of course others can and do judge value differently and I'm not about to argue that. I know you guys are looking out for me. It's just that...I find this particular storage tech largely irrelevant for my purposes. I would rather put $100 - $200 more in virtually any other area of a system than buy an SSD, to be perfectly honest with you. Because I consider their value lower than virtually any other area. For example, I'd rather do illogical things like buy 16 or 32GB of RAM than buy an SSD, despite the questionable need to do it. If I had to spend X amount of money, you better believe I'd spend it in the illogical bits of the system, and not the SSD. I don't trust them to hold my data over the longer-term compared to a regular hard drive, so that makes the 'illogical' logical to me. I could be wrong or right (write, hah), but that's how I feel about SSDs. I don't like the very tech they are based on, even though I generally like the move away from shock-sensitive mechanical devices. In a few years some magical new tech will improve SSDs, probably. But until then no speed improvements or shock resistance or lower power use is going to convince me getting one is any better for me than throwing money down the toilet, since I am completely satsified with existing tech and the bang-for-buck of existing tech, even though the existing tech is far from perfect (no technology is). What SSDs bring to the table is low value in my books. IF I didn't have write life concerns I'd find them pretty compelling though. I won't argue it isn't the best thing since sliced bread to others. I can see how many others love them and why they love them. Just not for me though.

Firestarter wrote:I guess you could still get an SSD to complement your HDD later on, but when you do, you'll look back at this thread and wonder why the hell you've waited that long.

I don't think this will ever happen. I am 'longevity concerned' about SSDs and I don't yet trust the tech for daily random writing and reading of my data. So you could really try to convince me 1,000 ways that they are the best thing since sliced bread and I still wouldn't be interested because I consider platters magnetically writing on rapidly spinning discs a more stable and mature technology after literally decades of refinement (and despite suffering hard drive failure on some of these too). Of course each technology has their pros and cons (including optical media of various types) and of course each of us perceive value differently.

I'm happy to see so many of you like them (and like them enough to recommend them highly to me). They still represent a very interesting technology to me but ultimately are a low-value item that I'd never spend on until the tech improves, both in terms of reliability of the written data and the cost. So in that sense, they are not 'ready' to me. However illogical it may seem to some of you convinced of their benefits and using them daily :)
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Tue Mar 18, 2014 10:31 pm

I get what you're saying about the SSDs. I didn't use them either until recently, and as I said above, I still don't believe they're a requirement for a gaming PC. I actually don't have any games on my SSD, but that's mostly due to the fact that my Steam library is over 500GB. I'm not going to spend big bucks on a 750-1TB SSD just to shave a few seconds off level load times. I dare go so far as to say that using premium SSD space to store games is a waste of money.


ozzuneoj wrote:That sucks. I hope that's not indicative of what I get with the Gigabyte GTX 660. Though doing a quick search online, there are heaps of people with fan noise problems on othe model I just bought. Oh no. Fingers crossed.

Which Gigabyte 660 did you get? I've got the GV-N660OC-2GD, and it does indeed occasionally get a strange oscillation thing going on with one the fans when the forces and planets align in just the right way. It usually goes away on its own (or when the fans spin down), but a very soft tap in the center of the fan will also set it right. The fan is clearly not "bad" per se, because it's dead silent during idle, and pretty quiet under load the vast majority of the time. It might just be a quirk with how I have it mounted in my particular case, or there could be a very simple fix. I've been too lazy to look at it closer.
i5 2500k - P67 - GTX660 - 840 Pro 256GB - Xonar Essence STX - Senn HD595's
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:04 pm

I think your concerns about SSDs and relative faith in HDDs are irrational. But the only concern I have for you is whether or not you are backing everything up? I hope you are.

The only real gaming advantage a SSD gives is loading into multiplayer games a little faster - that can help you grab the vehicle you want before anyone else in Battlefield for example. Beyond that an SSD offers nothing for gaming and you're wise to spend the money elsewhere if gaming is your only significant use case. The GTX 660 should meet your aim of "medium-high settings" at 1080p for quite some time.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Wed Mar 19, 2014 2:07 am

twups wrote:I find this particular storage tech largely irrelevant for my purposes. I would rather put $100 - $200 more in virtually any other area of a system than buy an SSD, to be perfectly honest with you. Because I consider their value lower than virtually any other area. For example, I'd rather do illogical things like buy 16 or 32GB of RAM than buy an SSD, despite the questionable need to do it. If I had to spend X amount of money, you better believe I'd spend it in the illogical bits of the system, and not the SSD. I don't trust them to hold my data over the longer-term compared to a regular hard drive, so that makes the 'illogical' logical to me. I could be wrong or right (write, hah), but that's how I feel about SSDs.

Well, if you choose to disregard the most important development in PC technology of the past few years just because you have a gut feeling (despite all the evidence to the contrary), then it's your loss I guess.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Wed Mar 19, 2014 1:42 pm

The Egg, I got the same GV-N660OC-2GD http://www.gigabyte.com.au/products/pro ... x?pid=4361 . Of course after buying it I took a closer look at the Gigabyte page and noticed they make far more models. I guess there's always something to worry about with fans. Thanks for the tip.

puppetworx, at the risk of starting another storage war, I back up to another HD as well as optical formats like DVD and Blu-Ray (which I only bought into last year, after the predictable price drops on both drives and media, as well as the necessary time to make refinements on the new tech). So my buying habits are pretty consistent, if a little illogical. I tend to wait for expensive tech to become cheap tech and I tend to take advantage of refinements.

Firestarter, to me the 'results' are far from conclusive and SSDs can and do die for reasons other than write life too (and reasons other than reported by the drive), and they seem to have more firmware/controller-related incompatibilities and in general manufacturers are working out the tech and trying things they haven't tried before, with the predictable refinements and improvements that follow from that. How is retaining data long-term without power too? What about other environmental concerns? And on top of this all they are still low value per gigabyte and hardly necessary in a desktop gaming rig. I've long since stopped caring about getting the latest and greatest stuff and instead want something that works to my satisfaction and that's it. Platters for the win. But please keep buying so that cost per gigabyte keeps going down and investment in better firmware and controllers and memory tech can continue, and I'll buy one when they bundle them in entry-level laptops. I'll consider that the right time.

Speaking of entry-level laptops...no entry-level 15.6-inch laptops use SSDs yet. If the reliability (and power usage) is so much better, I'd expect to see more SSD action in portables soon, particularly the entry-levels where most of the unwashed masses dwell and abuse their gear. It should reduce warranty claims on the devices for the manufacturers, which should save them some money. But for some reason basically all entry-level laptops are sticking to mechanical drives, despite portable action being a big strength of SSDs. Of course cost is a large factor in their non-acceptance here and so is the amount of gigabytes on offer here looking a tad anaemic on the specsheet and marketing materials (ignoring any other concerns a customer might have). Assuming these reasons are preventing the manufacturers from using them here, these are the very same reasons I haven't bought one yet. I'm too cheap for that :) and... I demand more from the storage specsheet and I don't have half as much tech lust as I used to. Performance concerns don't interest me IF my needs are satisfied with current drives (and they are). It would be different if they weren't.

Though admittedly I am VERY interested in the new direction Nvidia is taking with their new graphics chips. The more I read the more I lust after knowing what they will do next.

I think they have made a god-like move with their low-power stuff, even though I chose the power-sucking GTX 660. I still have lust to own the GTX 750 Ti, just to have a low-power chip of roughly similar performance. Yum. I am glad I have gotten up to speed with what they're doing now because I'm very excited to see where they go next. I'd spend more on their stuff than I would on a boring expensive CPU upgrade or SSDs, since my focus is mainly gaming and bang-for-buck in gaming. Things are looking up. I have even relaxed my aversion to black cases a bit, after looking at some of them. Even though I still think the world made a WRONG MOVE by moving away from computers being whitegoods, in general.

My aversion to gloss still stands though.
:)
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Wed Mar 19, 2014 2:21 pm

twups wrote:...SSDs can and do die for reasons other than write life too...firmware/controller-related incompatibilities and in general manufacturers are working out the tech and trying things they haven't tried before, with the predictable refinements and improvements that follow from that.
This argument is stuck in 2008...well maybe not that long, but these concerns were addressed and fixed years ago.

twups wrote:How is retaining data long-term without power too?
I have not heard of any issues.

twups wrote:What about other environmental concerns?
Don't get it wet and don't feed it after midnight.

twups wrote:And on top of this all they are still low value per gigabyte and hardly necessary in a desktop gaming rig.
No one is saying that they are high value per gigabyte, but we are saying that the value of cost/performance increase is. Even if the impact to gaming is minimal, you will see across the board perfrmance boosts to Windows. Here's a quote from the System Guide:

Current System Guide wrote:Budget buyers may not be able to afford an SSD, but everyone else should spring for one and get an auxiliary mechanical drive for their mass-storage needs. Solid-state drives offer huges improvement in transfer rates and load times, which are more than worth the extra expense.
No one can force you to buy a SSD if you don't want to, but your concerns about the tech aren't really holding water. These things are reliable, good value (for performance), and fairly mature, despite the relatively low cost/GB when compared to mechanical drives (which are still getting density improvements, I might add).

twups wrote:Speaking of entry-level laptops...no entry-level 15.6-inch laptops use SSDs yet.
I might add that all tablets are using flash memory (the same technology as SSDs). But entry laptops aren't skipping SSDs because of reliability. They're skipping them because 1TB mechanical drives are dirt cheap, and that can still be a selling point.
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Re: I'm stuck in 2008 (Nvidia 9600 GT). Recommended upgrade?

Postposted on Thu Mar 20, 2014 11:46 am

If the guy doesn't want to buy an SSD, leave him alone, people. It's his preference.
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