How much of a bottleneck would it be

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How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Wed Aug 22, 2012 2:13 pm

So with the recent price cuts from the 660ti having landed I'm seriously considering a new video card. I have been watching the 7850/70 and the prices are finally where i like them. Now i come to my dilemma after a handful of searches turning up nothing concrete i figured someone here might have a similar setup or have a better idea than myself about the limits of my current CPU.

Currently rocking and Athlon II x4 630 OC to 3.5Ghz stable. Would this be enough of a bottleneck to make something like a 7850 a waste of money? I really have no desire to update my cpu or motherboard and yes i know doing so would alleviate any bottlenecks i might have with the current system. I don't play many demanding games mostly DOTA 2 Diablo 3 CS:S MINECRAFT. All of the games run fine on my current setup but my gt240 is starting to show it's age and isn't going to get better as we go forward. The update is more of a want than a need.

My system specs are in my Sig

Thanks for the comments, also figured Processors was best but if Graphics was more appropriate feel free to move mods.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:16 pm

Your Athlon isn't going to be much of a bottleneck. I would say it's a fine investment to grab one of the new Radeons, however you might want to check your power supplies. With your current rig, 400w is right around what you need. The Geforce GT 240 sips power compared to the 7870 or 7850.

Check out http://images10.newegg.com/BizIntell/tool/psucalc/index.html to help you calculate your power needs.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:21 pm

That's what I was thinking. A fast quad core should be solid for some time...I just wasn't sure if there were other limitations of the Athlon. You do have DDR3 memory, too, so a good GPU will probably be a great upgrade.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:33 pm

derTorbs wrote:Your Athlon isn't going to be much of a bottleneck. I would say it's a fine investment to grab one of the new Radeons, however you might want to check your power supplies. With your current rig, 400w is right around what you need. The Geforce GT 240 sips power compared to the 7870 or 7850.

Check out http://images10.newegg.com/BizIntell/tool/psucalc/index.html to help you calculate your power needs.



The power supply should be fine it's got 30A on the 12v line and a dedicated 6 pin connector. TR's review of the [url]7850/70 http://techreport.com/articles.x/22573/11[url] shows a measly 172 watts during load with an i5-750 (also a 95w Processor) granted i OC my cpu, they should be very comparable in power draw.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:39 pm

The extent of a "CPU limitation" depends on what games you're playing and what resolution you're playing them at. MMO games like Starcraft II and Skyrim can show CPU weaknesses pretty well and lower resolutions put more weight on the CPU to keep up with the GPU. Here's a good article to read since it compares many CPUs in a variety of games.(they use a 7970 to elminate GPU bottlenecks) At the end of the day though, yes, you've got a good enough CPU to enjoy the frame rate bump of a new GPU.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Wed Aug 22, 2012 5:34 pm

That is an excellent link and exactly the kind of info i was looking for. I guess it really does just depend on the game. Wonderful help gerbils, many thanks!
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Fri Aug 24, 2012 5:54 am

There is a fixed amount of intelligence on the planet, and the population keeps growing :(
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Fri Aug 24, 2012 6:13 am

Note that although the article shows that Intel's mid-range and high-end processors perform better than AMD's, it also shows that all of the tested processors are fast enough for gaming at 1080p.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Fri Aug 24, 2012 7:23 am

JustAnEngineer wrote:Note that although the article shows that Intel's mid-range and high-end processors perform better than AMD's, it also shows that all of the tested processors are fast enough for gaming at 1080p.

I suppose it depends on the definition of "fast enough". I like smooth myself.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Fri Aug 24, 2012 7:22 pm

morphine wrote:I suppose it depends on the definition of "fast enough". I like smooth myself.
"Speed costs money. How fast do you want to go?"
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Sat Aug 25, 2012 11:25 pm

JustAnEngineer wrote:
morphine wrote:I suppose it depends on the definition of "fast enough". I like smooth myself.
"Speed costs money. How fast do you want to go?"


200 dollars fast? :D

I was very happy TR did that CPU review because it's another take on the information i was trying to find. Like i said my current game selection makes my requirements pretty low. It really was more of a 'when will my cpu limit me' kind of question. Seems like the best answer really is it depends on the game. It's certainly disheartening to see the results though. Intel so dominantely wins all of the tests.

I can always just move a GPU to a new build in the future, anyway.

Does anyone know of this new article is going to be a regular thing with each new generation? I found it to be incredibly useful for making a decision on upgrading.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Sun Aug 26, 2012 1:53 am

Nice, I am running a GT240 myself, only in this case my CPU is an i7-875K (yes, I have been waiting for a good card at a nice price for this long).
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Fri Sep 14, 2012 11:00 am

Quick update: Went ahead and purchased an MSI 7850 twin frozr III for cheap off ebay. Once i receive and install and everything is working I'll have to do a follow up on how well my setup works. Thanks again for the input. I figure there must be some other people out there that could benefit from someone with first hand experience with my setup.
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Re: How much of a bottleneck would it be

Postposted on Thu Sep 20, 2012 1:52 pm

Alright my new baby showed up and after verifying i didn't have a dud from an eBay seller the verdict is in. With my current selection of games i have no problem maxing everything with frame rates normally above 60. This wasn't really a surprise as all of my games are less than demanding. The most punishing game I've tried is Just Cause 2. It runs buttery-smooth and with the in game 'benchmarks' i was seeing 80+ FPS. I noticed a increase in CPU usage, not surprising, but none of the games keep it above 70% constant. Obviously there is more heat and my temps have gone up but this card stays incredibly cool. Everything runs fine off my PSU even with my CPU overclocked and slightly overvolted.

I also messed around with the sliders in catalyst control center and for giggles put the core clock to 1ghz. Not a problem. I didn't extensively run it at that speed but noticed no problems.

Hopefully this helps anyone with similar specs if they were wondering the same thing as myself. Also thanks again for the input everyone.
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