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EdwardJamesAlmost
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Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 2:38 am

Hey all,

Even though my current Wolfdale E8400 is alive and well, it's getting long for the first world. In a world of "moar cores" and Twitch.tv tabs that run at 99% CPU usage, I think it's likely time for an upgrade. The question, however, is what that upgrade should it look like, and how long from now it should be done. I'm in the US. Nearest Microcenter is about an hour away.

The current build is an E8400 on a Gigabyte EP35C-DS3R motherboard. This PCI-Express 1.0-capable mobo currently houses a PCI-E 3.0 AMD HD7XXX graphics card, 8GB of DDR3 ram, with a Corsair MX500 power supply. A Corsair SSD plays a primary storage role. It's long since grown out of its multi-purpose rationale (some DVD-encoding here, some media editing there, some RTS and Deus Ex gaming), so a new day is dawning.

With that in mind, I've come up with three options. Feel free to chime in on any one, or modify with your reasoning. Thanks in advance!

1) Replace existing motherboard, CPU, and RAM in existing system. - An H370 motherboard (w/Type-C Gen2 for the phone) would house a Pentium Gold CPU (G5400) and 8GB of DDR4 ram. This would alleviate the PCI-E bottleneck, and I'd be able to enjoy improved IPC performance on a chip that isn't too radical of a departure from the E8400. This option would bide enough time for a newer generation of AMD video cards (Navi?) to hit the market, and allow me to enjoy some recent games at 1080p in the meantime in an older case. I've priced this one out around $240 USD. One piece of outstanding skepticism is whether I'm actually missing anything from not going o a Core iX.

2) Replace the pieces above with Ryzen 2700X, a B450 board (again, Type-C Gen2 for the phone) and 16GB ram, and replace other parts (case, power supply) as needed. - This build would allow me to immediately enjoy some of AMD's best current gen stuff, though I'd still have some vestigial hardware (especially this space-consuming case) in place. This would also allow me the PCI-E bandwidth to take advantage of an RX580 and Freesync. This one isn't priced too pretty, at around $600, thanks to current RAM prices. Add the RX580 and that jumps even higher.

3) Wait until Navi drops, then build an entirely new machine around that. - This way, I'd be stuck with my working Wolfdale build until Su only knows, but I'd have the benefit of having a greater selection of better hardware, and the possibility that prices drop on other components. This option will likely be higher priced than $600, but I'd be OK with that, because I'd be building another computer to last as long as the E8400 builds.

Now for me to take a breath. My thanks in advance!
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 4:41 am

4) Wait for a bit more, and see if you can assemble a Z370/Z390 + i7-9700K/i9-9900K setup instead. That way you'd be able to have a choice between either CPU manufacturer for an 8-core mainstream CPU. You'll also have to add on the cost of a decent air cooler in case of Intel, but it shouldn't be too hard on it as long as you stay within stock turbo ratios - rumour has it that the CPUs will be using soldered IHS again.

If you don't mind not being able to change turbo ratios past stock and a 95W TDP hard-cap, a B360 will also do fine. Just make sure you get something that supports these 8-core CPUs out of the box - at least ASRock has confirmed that they'll be adding such stickers.
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:42 am

Your name made me laugh. If you've lasted on an E8400 for this long, you're obviously not in a hurry and there are no enormous changes to software in the immediate future that are going to make your current E8400 experience suddenly drop precipitously.

The stop gap is as short-term as it seems. You'd probably see a huge difference in performance moving to a G5400 since I saw a massive boost moving from a Q9550 to a 2500K. Whilst improvements since Sandy bridge have certainly been less dramatic than they were in the jump from Core2 > Nehalem > Sandy Bridge, the jump for you will be double the threads and double the performance-per-thread. The problem is that 2C/4T CPUs are already showing a massive disadvantage in many games, and even the true quad cores are showing a significant, if not quite as dramatic performance deficit.

The deciding factor should be whether you enjoy high-fps online twitch gaming or whether you prefer the less intense pace of single-player and more casual online gameplay.

Essentially, AMD CPUs are the best overall option right now for everything except twitch gaming, and there won't be any major changes there for a year or so. You get more cores and threads than Intel and at lower prices on an architecture that game developers are coding for first and foremost (consoles) Their IPC is 5-10 lower than the latest Intel stuff and their clockspeeds are another 10% or so lower when comparing equivalent models, but not only do they meet the bar for "enough CPU to shift the gaming performance bottleneck to the GPU instead", they are also blisteringly fast at everything non-gaming. That's what more cores does, in a lot of workloads. When you throw in the reduced exposure to Spectre and Meltdown variants that are sapping valuable IPC from Intel's finest and the AMD performance improves, relatively.

On the GPU front, AMD are performance-competitive but not efficiency-competitive. They make up for that with Freesync and given that the popular cards right now are the RX580 and Vega56, a modest-refresh Freesync monitor that tops out at 75Hz or 100Hz is a good pairing, IMO. It's not 240Hz G-Sync but it also doesn't come with any of the additional cost. If you want large-format, 1440p with VRR, Freesync will save you the cost of a good GPU. Like, there are genuinely equivalent high-end screens that are $300-350 cheaper without the '$200' G-Sync tax.

Intel's advantage is at the clockspeed and IPC end. There's little point buying Intel unless you're running into games that are bottlenecked by the speed of a low number of threads. This is mainly (but not exclusively) high-refresh gaming and where the Ryzen is getting 130fps, the i7-8086K is getting 170fps. If you're going down that route, you probably need to invest in a GTX 1080 or 1080Ti along with a 144Hz+ G-Sync display, then decide if you can reach vsync reliably enough in your game to disable G-Sync and use the strobing backlight instead. My own G-Sync display was sold off about 6 months ago and it was only a 1080P TN Acer model, but from that experience, ULMB stobing is the best option for high refresh gaming by far. VRR (Freesync/G-Sync) are much more significant below 60Hz.

So,

The finest gaming experience you can have, IMO, is an Intel i7-8086K with a 240Hz strobing display. Whilst that doesn't mandate Nvidia/G-Sync, that's certainly where the majority of your purchase options for 240Hz strobing displays lie. You should wait for the 8-core i9s to launch, and also the Nvidia 1180/2080 or whatever they're going to call it.

For everyone who is perhaps not aiming at the 240Hz market, AMD have more performance per dollar in both the CPU and GPU markets, as well as offering VRR for free (and you really really *DO* want VRR with anything other than a high-refresh display). There's no need to wait, unless you want to wait for maybe 6-9 months for Navi and 18 months for Zen 2.
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:34 am

Whether you do #1 or #2, I would like to really encourage you to drop the 10-year-old power supply while you're at it. 80-plus Bronze units from Seasonic or EVGA are only going to run you $40-50 and I would hate to see your aged PSU take out shiny new hardware when it finally decides to go.

Have you considered #1.5 which is a Ryzen 5 2400G, 16GB of fast memory, and a B450 motherboard? Or maybe even a Ryzen 3 2200G, if you're feeling particularly thrifty. I can only speak about the faster one, but the 2400G's onboard graphics are plenty for some light 1080p gaming. Diablo 3, StarCraft 2, even Battletech run pretty well on the integrated graphics for me. You'd be able to bide your time but you'd get a dramatic performance increase and an easy upgrade to a discounted Ryzen 2700X in the future when you're ready to buy a graphics card.
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:57 am

Ryzen 5 2600X + B450 Aorus M + 16 GiB DDR4 = $425 +tax

With Precision Boost 2, AMD's second-generation Ryzen CPUs offer even better performance for multiple threads than first-generation Ryzen.
https://techreport.com/review/33531/amd ... s-reviewed
https://techreport.com/review/33568/gam ... ryzen-cpus
https://techreport.com/review/33719/amd ... u-reviewed

Micro Center's in-store CPU deals are attractive.
$270 AMD Ryzen 7 2700X with Wraith Prism cooler ($330 at Newegg)
or $190 AMD Ryzen 5 2600X with Wraith Spire cooler ($230 at Newegg)
The Ryzen 5 has only 6 cores /12 threads, but it offers almost the same per-thread performance for $80 or $100 less than the 8-core/16-thread Ryzen 7. If you keep this system for as long as you have kept the Wolfdale going, that difference is less than 70¢ a month. :lol:

Micro Center will sweeten the deal by offering an additional $30 discount if you bundle your new CPU with specific motherboards, but there are no micro-ATX or mini-ITX bundle deals for the 2700X or 2600X. Of the first wave of micro-ATX motherboards with the B450 chipset, the $85 (or $87) Gigabyte B450 Aorus M has the best arrangement of PCIe slots. If you need to install more than two double-width PCIe X16 cards plus a PCIe x1 card that would fit into that micro-ATX motherboard, then the Gigabyte X470 Aorus Gaming 5 WiFi is just $140 -20MIR in a bundle (vs. $184 at Newegg) but that's quite a bit more expensive than a B450 option outside of the bundle.

I do not believe that you should spend money on a wimpy Pentium Gold build. Your Intel options should be the 6-core/12-thread Core i7-8700K or a future 8-core/8-thread Core i7-9700K.

DDR4 prices have been dropping very slowly since the crypto-currency bubble has finally begun to collapse. Memory prices are still elevated significantly from where they were a couple of years ago. 16 GiB of memory will set you back $170 at Micro Center (or $150 at Newegg) as 2x8 GiB of PC4-25600 G.Skill F4-3200C16D-16GV (DDR4-3200, 16-18-18-38, 1.35 V).

Take a look at SeaSonic's Focus Plus line of power supplies.
$115 -25MIR SeaSonic Focus Plus Platinum SSR-650PX
or $80 -15MIR SeaSonic Focus Plus Gold SSR-550FX
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:02 am

Chrispy_ wrote:
Essentially, AMD CPUs are the best overall option right now for everything except twitch gaming, and there won't be any major changes there for a year or so. You get more cores and threads than Intel and at lower prices on an architecture that game developers are coding for first and foremost (consoles).


Consoles don't have Zen cores. They have Jaguar which is based on the happy crappy Bobcat architecture which is completely different. Game developers certainly aren't "coding for first and foremost" AMD in the PC space (which is the subject of discussion). Why do you think Intel CPUs perform so, so much better for gaming despite having fewer cores? Why do you think AMD demo their latest GPUs with Intel CPUs?

Why do you think Intel CPUs cost more? The truth hurts.
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:10 am

Chrispy_ wrote:
Essentially, AMD CPUs are the best overall option right now for everything except twitch gaming, and there won't be any major changes there for a year or so. You get more cores and threads than Intel and at lower prices on an architecture that game developers are coding for first and foremost (consoles) Their IPC is 5-10 lower than the latest Intel stuff and their clockspeeds are another 10% or so lower when comparing equivalent models, but not only do they meet the bar for "enough CPU to shift the gaming performance bottleneck to the GPU instead", they are also blisteringly fast at everything non-gaming. That's what more cores does, in a lot of workloads. When you throw in the reduced exposure to Spectre and Meltdown variants that are sapping valuable IPC from Intel's finest and the AMD performance improves, relatively.

Cores and threads are only valuable when put to use; for a user whose tasks cap out at 8 threads a 16-thead system will offer no advantage. The "console home architecture advantage" is a nice-sounding theory until it manifests itself in the wild; we never saw bulldozer take the lead on consoles that used AMD chips. TR's benchmarks don't necessarily characterize either chip as "blisteringly fast" over the other in benchmarks; it really depends on the user's application of choice. Blender and fluid dynamics will give you wildly different results.

Realistically, I'd wait to see where the price/performance sweet-spot is in a few months and grab that, regardless of vendor "flavor." A V56/1070ish GPU and 144Hz display will also knock your socks off if you're a gamer.
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:13 am

Pancake wrote:
Chrispy_ wrote:
Essentially, AMD CPUs are the best overall option right now for everything except twitch gaming, and there won't be any major changes there for a year or so. You get more cores and threads than Intel and at lower prices on an architecture that game developers are coding for first and foremost (consoles).


Consoles don't have Zen cores. They have Jaguar which is based on the happy crappy Bobcat architecture which is completely different. Game developers certainly aren't "coding for first and foremost" AMD in the PC space (which is the subject of discussion). Why do you think Intel CPUs perform so, so much better for gaming despite having fewer cores? Why do you think AMD demo their latest GPUs with Intel CPUs?

Why do you think Intel CPUs cost more? The truth hurts.

To be fair, the difference in benchmarks is generally not noticeable unless you're throwing serious GPU oomph at your games or running at a >60Hz refresh rate.

That said, most review sites focus on repeatability over stress in their gaming tests and future games may not be so forgiving, so it's good to lock in as much performance as you can when you build. You shouldn't build for walking down the same stretch of corridor eight times in today's games but rather a 30-person fracas in games released five years from now.
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:29 am

Pancake wrote:
Why do you think Intel CPUs cost more? The truth hurts.

Because Newegg says so:

  • i7-8700K = $360, R7 2700X = $330
  • i5-8600K = $260, R5 2600X = $230

Intel Z370 boards are an extra 30% more expensive than B360 boards, comparing like brand/model (eg Asus Prime)
Intel's stock coolers are utterly worthless, so you need to spend at least another $40-50 on a cooler, which just isn't the case for AMD's Wraiths.

Game developers for consoles are using AMD custom silicon that matches neither AMD nor Intel's current desktop solutions; I'm not implying that consoles were running Zen architecture five years before it was released, that would just be ridiculous!

What I mean by architecture in this case is the AMD APU-like design of consoles that necessitates developers use AMD-optimised tools and compilers, making using of GCN to offload as much as they can from the CPU to the GPU, splitting their code so that runs across more cores. There's no denying that the current generation of consoles are still CPU-limited and as such, developers are forced to write in such a way that more threads are used. The fact that some game engines still run fine on four threads is no guarantee that they all do. There are hundreds of sites and vloggers who demonstrate with video/FCAT/frametime evidence that when a game does run out of threads, the performance tanks.
Last edited by Chrispy_ on Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:42 am

Chrispy_ wrote:
Pancake wrote:

Because Newegg says so.
  • i7-8700K = $360, R7 2700X = $330
  • i5-8600K = $260, R5 2600X = $260
Intel Z370 boards are an extra 30% more expensive than B360 boards, comparing like brand/model (eg Asus Prime)
Intel's stock coolers are utterly worthless, so you need to spent at least another $40-50 on a cooler, which just isn't the case for AMD's Wraiths.

I'm surprised to write that I have 2 Ryzen PCs in my house. I haven't had a system with an AMD CPU since the 6 core phenom, but here I sit with a low end system with a 1500, and a gaming system with a 2700+ and a 980ti. My main rig is still intel, an i9 7900x OCed to 4.6 that I built last year, but I didn't expect to be buying AMD at all, and here I am writing this post and not even lying.
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:06 am

The Intel fanboys are desperately clinging to the IPC thing and if you use the traditional average framerate measurement method on some low-threaded FPS games and cherry-pick your graphics settings to specifically exaggerate the difference between AMD and Intel, Intel will have a commanding lead.

That's because Intel's IPC at 5GHz is better for this situation than AMD's IPC at 4.2Hz.
I genuinely don't think AMD will overtake Intel in the IPC race, nor the clock race - at least not until Intel's own R&D efforts are dwarfed by AMD's.

The bonkers part about people who get upset when you dare speak out against Intel is how they're clinging to the past. low core counts are in the past, even smartphones have more cores than most Intel desktop PCs these days. Whether you accept it or not, software is becoming more and more multi-threaded by the day and Consoles (and by extension, the latest game engines) are also moving in that direction.

Intel's cheapest high-frequency, high-thread consumer product is the i7-8700K. The next step down runs at a paltry 3.2GHz base clock and is a locked processor. Below that and we're already wallowing in the misery of just six threads. - So $343 for the CPU + $105 for a Z370 board + $30 for a CM H212 cheapo cooler = $478. AMD's equivalent product to the 8700K is (would you believe it?) the R5 2600X. It's unlocked, it boosts to 4.2GHz, and it has the same 6C/12T. The thing is, the equivalent package costs just $295. That Intel premium is a 63% higher price, and you are NOT getting 63% more performance. Not even close. Maybe 25% in some convoluted scenarios.

Now, as a gamer (arguably the main reason to choose Intel for a desktop CPU at the moment) Can you afford the best GPU on the market, or are you making a compromise on your GPU because you're $180 poorer for not choosing AMD? Yeah, in the real world, most people don't have infinite money. Money no object, Intel is the best gaming platform. They also have a compelling product in the i5-8400, if you're looking solely at gaming and are so tight for budget that you would otherwise be looking at an i3 or Ryzen5 quad core. Given the cost of DDR4 these days, I don't think that's as big a market as it used to be, because builders on an extremely tight budget are just choosing not to buy at all right now.

For everyone else who is budget-constrained and gaming, that $180 that isn't being spent on an Intel CPU is going on a graphics card upgrade and it'll make FAR more difference to the experience than the CPU choice.
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:56 am

Go all the way on a good system build or wait until you're able to do that, I say. Stopgap upgrades with cheap components made sense a decade ago when whatever you bought was gonna be obsolete in 18 months, but thanks to CPU stagnation you're just throwing money away if you don't go for good components. Pentium is fine if all you care about is web and email, but you want more cores if you're gaming due to OS bloat eating up a lot of CPU resources and developers slowly, finally starting to figure out how to do multithreading. An i5 or comparable Ryzen is a good starting point. Both companies' midrange-and-up performance is up to snuff for typical PC activities; Intel does still have an IPC advantage but it's not nearly as severe as it was a few years ago.

Bear in mind that AMD and Nvidia are both gearing up for a new generation of GPUs so it may make sense to hold off on that part. Or cryptocurrency mining could pick up again and they'll get scarce again, it's a bit of a crap shoot.

If you're on a really tight budget and need to do a full replacement of everything, take a look at off lease corporate workstations rocking Haswell era components. Never touch used consumer-peasant hardware, but the enterprise stuff is built to last forever and this option will get you most of the way to current-gen performance for about 400 bucks. Just be wary of nonstandard form factors.
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:06 am

I keep telling myself I'm gonna get back into gaming, and have even acquired most of the parts I need for a new-ish gaming rig. Life and work keep getting in the way, so the parts still sit, and I continue to use my trusty AMD FX-8350 as my primary desktop. If CPU/GPU tech was moving faster, I'd be worried the gaming rig will be obsolete by the time I finally put it together... but the way things are going, it'll probably just be "slightly dated". :lol:

Edit: Moderately amused that Newegg still has the FX-8350 in stock, for $90. Who is still buying these things at retail?
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:31 am

just brew it! wrote:
Edit: Moderately amused that Newegg still has the FX-8350 in stock, for $90. Who is still buying these things at retail?


Probably people that were running an FX system with less than 8 cores. Or something.

I suspect $90 might be still be an upgrade considering that, but I'm not so clear on how it actually pans out these days. Most CPUs are probably fine in most office/Internet work/play, so I think it's probably something else that made having 8 cores "better".

Or maybe it's just that it has 8 cores compared to what they had.

Back on topic: this is probably a very good time to hold off a bit longer, to wait for either Intel or NVIDIA to drop the news of their new CPU/GPUs.
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:49 am

Noinoi wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Edit: Moderately amused that Newegg still has the FX-8350 in stock, for $90. Who is still buying these things at retail?

Probably people that were running an FX system with less than 8 cores. Or something.

I suspect $90 might be still be an upgrade considering that, but I'm not so clear on how it actually pans out these days. Most CPUs are probably fine in most office/Internet work/play, so I think it's probably something else that made having 8 cores "better".

Or maybe it's just that it has 8 cores compared to what they had.

It could also be that the high price of RAM has kept some people on DDR3 platforms long past their "best by" date. That's certainly been a factor in why I haven't put together a Ryzen box, and continue to use the FX-8350.
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:32 pm

EdwardJamesAlmost wrote:
Hey all,

Even though my current Wolfdale E8400 is alive and well, it's getting long for the first world. In a world of "moar cores" and Twitch.tv tabs that run at 99% CPU usage, I think it's likely time for an upgrade. The question, however, is what that upgrade should it look like, and how long from now it should be done. I'm in the US. Nearest Microcenter is about an hour away.

The current build is an E8400 on a Gigabyte EP35C-DS3R motherboard. This PCI-Express 1.0-capable mobo currently houses a PCI-E 3.0 AMD HD7XXX graphics card, 8GB of DDR3 ram, with a Corsair MX500 power supply. A Corsair SSD plays a primary storage role. It's long since grown out of its multi-purpose rationale (some DVD-encoding here, some media editing there, some RTS and Deus Ex gaming), so a new day is dawning.

With that in mind, I've come up with three options. Feel free to chime in on any one, or modify with your reasoning. Thanks in advance!

1) Replace existing motherboard, CPU, and RAM in existing system. - An H370 motherboard (w/Type-C Gen2 for the phone) would house a Pentium Gold CPU (G5400) and 8GB of DDR4 ram. This would alleviate the PCI-E bottleneck, and I'd be able to enjoy improved IPC performance on a chip that isn't too radical of a departure from the E8400. This option would bide enough time for a newer generation of AMD video cards (Navi?) to hit the market, and allow me to enjoy some recent games at 1080p in the meantime in an older case. I've priced this one out around $240 USD. One piece of outstanding skepticism is whether I'm actually missing anything from not going o a Core iX.

2) Replace the pieces above with Ryzen 2700X, a B450 board (again, Type-C Gen2 for the phone) and 16GB ram, and replace other parts (case, power supply) as needed. - This build would allow me to immediately enjoy some of AMD's best current gen stuff, though I'd still have some vestigial hardware (especially this space-consuming case) in place. This would also allow me the PCI-E bandwidth to take advantage of an RX580 and Freesync. This one isn't priced too pretty, at around $600, thanks to current RAM prices. Add the RX580 and that jumps even higher.

3) Wait until Navi drops, then build an entirely new machine around that. - This way, I'd be stuck with my working Wolfdale build until Su only knows, but I'd have the benefit of having a greater selection of better hardware, and the possibility that prices drop on other components. This option will likely be higher priced than $600, but I'd be OK with that, because I'd be building another computer to last as long as the E8400 builds.

Now for me to take a breath. My thanks in advance!


From a fellow guy that was stuck with that dilemma some time ago (also had an E8400), I will give you a fourth option you weren't expecting.

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/LGA775- ... 14744.html

Replace your processor with this and you are golden until Ryzen 3000 arrives with 7nm goodness. That's exactly what I did. Also OC'ed the chip a bit upping the FSB to 400mhz (I have 800Mhz DDR2). Working perfectly in Gigabyte EP45-DS3.

If you have any question about how to do that, just ask although google can answer all you need to know about this.
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:46 pm

I like option 2's general direction. The stop-gap (1) will show its low-end nature pretty quickly, and waiting (3) won't get you that much relative to the improvements that have already happened since you built/upgraded your current system.

Aside from 2C4T and 8GB of RAM being weak for the long haul, Pentium Golds don't support AVX at all. If you're getting by with a C2D, it'll still be a huge upgrade, but its future-proofing value is close to zero. If we knew the perfect hardware for you was right around the corner and the C2D was still too weak to tolerate in the meantime, it could be a decent choice, but hardware just doesn't advance that fast anymore and waiting doesn't get you much.

A 2700X-based system may be a bit pricier, but it's the kind of system that could likely last you another decade. If it softens the immediate price tag, GPU upgrades don't need to be synchronized with anything else (and upgrading GPUs twice as often as the rest of the system may be a good strategy anyway).

If the 2700X-based system is just a bit too pricey, I'd second Chrispy_'s suggestion of a 2200G/2400G, probably with the same mobo and RAM you'd get for the 2700X. Those will on their own stay workable far longer than a Pentium Gold, and Zen2 will probably drop right into the same board when it comes out (if that's one of the things you were interested in waiting for). On the Intel side the equivalent strategy would be going from an i3-8100 to a 9700K, but unless you're getting into twitchy gaming and HFR monitors AMD is probably better for this.

Current consoles may not bear much resemblance to Zen, but 9th-gen consoles will almost certainly be using it. Zen may not be a top optimization target for game devs right now, but it will be by the time a 2700X is showing its age.
 
Chrispy_
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:59 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Edit: Moderately amused that Newegg still has the FX-8350 in stock, for $90. Who is still buying these things at retail?


Clearly nobody at all, otherwise they'd have gone out of stock ;)

just brew it! wrote:
It could also be that the high price of RAM has kept some people on DDR3 platforms long past their "best by" date. That's certainly been a factor in why I haven't put together a Ryzen box, and continue to use the FX-8350.


Myself and others at work come down on this side of the fence. If you only want 8GB then DDR4 prices aren't too significant but ideally my home workstation needs more than the 32GB it has and the HTPC ran out of RAM frequently when it only had 8GB. I know I bought Kingston HyperX Fury DDR3-1866 16GB kits for £42 a couple of years ago. I have the invoices for a few hundred kits. That means that my 64GB of DDR3 at home could have been replaced in its entirety by faster DDR3 for just £168.

£168 today doesn't even buy one kit of DDR4 worth having. It'd buy me a couple of 8GB sticks but that's wasteful of the motherboard slots because I'd then have to throw them away if I wanted more than 32GB RAM which would be the entire point of the upgrade in the first place.
Last edited by Chrispy_ on Sat Aug 11, 2018 2:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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just brew it!
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 2:06 pm

Chrispy_ wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Edit: Moderately amused that Newegg still has the FX-8350 in stock, for $90. Who is still buying these things at retail?

Clearly nobody at all, otherwise they'd have gone out of stock ;)

Maybe AMD still has a warehouse full of them that they're trying to get rid of, and keeps convincing Newegg to take more by dropping the wholeseale price!
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
setaG_lliB
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 4:32 pm

madtronik wrote:
From a fellow guy that was stuck with that dilemma some time ago (also had an E8400), I will give you a fourth option you weren't expecting.

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/LGA775- ... 14744.html

Replace your processor with this and you are golden until Ryzen 3000 arrives with 7nm goodness. That's exactly what I did. Also OC'ed the chip a bit upping the FSB to 400mhz (I have 800Mhz DDR2). Working perfectly in Gigabyte EP45-DS3.

If you have any question about how to do that, just ask although google can answer all you need to know about this.


That's actually not a bad idea. I upgraded an old E8600 based system with a Q9550 for only $20. The 45nm Core 2 Quads and Xeons are great overclockers. Mine effortlessly runs at 4.25GHz on a 2GHz FSB, and at that speed it "feels" nearly as fast on the Internet as my main system, a 4.6GHz i7-4930K. Of course, it helps that the C2Q has 16GB of DDR3 as well as an 840 Pro and GTX 970 inherited from my main system.

If your board lets you overclock, a cheap Xeon or C2Q would be a good upgrade and easily hold you over until... Ryzen 3000, say.
 
e1jones
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sat Aug 11, 2018 4:53 pm

EdwardJamesAlmost wrote:
The current build is an E8400 on a Gigabyte EP35C-DS3R motherboard.


Ah, that brings back memories... I had the same processor & a DS3P motherboard until January 2017 when I finally got fed up with the BIOS chip needing to be jumped (I was happy for the dual BIOS!) every time I rebooted. Accidental patches or whatever ... ugh :( For maybe $45-50 I could have replaced the board off Ebay but that wouldn't have gotten me much further, since the new BattleTech game was coming and it probably would have been very sad.

If I'd waited a little bit I might have been able to catch the first wave of RyZen processors... but instead I built the computer listed below. I guess it's just as well I built when I did because right after RAM & video card prices doubled practically overnight.
Gigabyte Ultra Gaming Z270 - i5 7600 - CORSAIR Vengeance LPX 16GB - EVGA SuperNOVA 550 G2 - GIGABYTE Windforce GTX 1060 6GB - Crucial BX100 500G
 
Pancake
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:06 am

Chrispy_ wrote:
The Intel fanboys are desperately clinging to the IPC thing and if you use the traditional average framerate measurement method on some low-threaded FPS games and cherry-pick your graphics settings to specifically exaggerate the difference between AMD and Intel, Intel will have a commanding lead.


Or it could be simply a reasonable summation of what reviewers on pretty much all hardware/game review sites have concluded - including this here august website. An Intel solution is the price AND performance choice for gaming. No need to make fake stuff up.
 
Kretschmer
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sun Aug 12, 2018 8:17 am

Chrispy_ wrote:
The bonkers part about people who get upset when you dare speak out against Intel is how they're clinging to the past. low core counts are in the past, even smartphones have more cores than most Intel desktop PCs these days. Whether you accept it or not, software is becoming more and more multi-threaded by the day and Consoles (and by extension, the latest game engines) are also moving in that direction.

This is another post chock full of misinformation and/or wishful thinking.
(1) Smartphones don't have eight equal cores like x86-64 desktop processors. Four cores are weak with low voltage, while the other four offer performance at the price of more power draw. For heavy apps, flagship smartphones are quad-core, which doesn't bolster your argument.
(2) Consoles have been "moving in AMD's direction" since Bulldozer flopped and people started arguing that the FX8150 would catch up in games as they became more threaded. Yet here we are almost seven years later and Intel took the lead in every TR benchmark with their designs "firmly clinging to the past." Hell, advocates have been predicting threadcount supremacy in games since the Playstation 3 and its cell processor debuted in 2006.
(2A) In fact, my puny old 4-core i7-7700K with DDR4-3200 beat an eight-core R7-2700X with DDR4-3400 in 80% of TR's game benchmarks (the outlier being a 5.5-year-old game that TR only includes due to its affinity for multithreading, not its playerbase.
(2B) Also, the pitful, obsolete i5-8400 beat up the R7 2700X in 80% of the game benchmarks, too, despite retailing for over a third less and having a measly 6 threads to play with. (Again, the outlier being the "artificially included" Crysis 3. It really should be 100%.)

Look, I think that Ryzen 2 chips are a fine choice and one that would tempt me if I was building today. But all software isn't going to magically scale with the number of threads in a desktop AMD CPU, and asserting that users should default to as many cores as possible is not optimal advice. Individual tasks - yes, even outside of games - vary in their responsiveness to core scaling. For the CPU-intensive things I do (games, photo editing, Excel) I would notice another 400Mhz more than I would four additional cores. For example, Lightroom scales well to four cores, a bit to six cores, and plateaus at eight cores. Photoshop is even worse. For many users at a given budget, fewer faster cores will do better than throwing cores at their problems, and wishing that the rest of the world will catch up to AMD's CPU offerings is putting the cart before the horse.

I also look forward to seeing your strategy when both flagship offerings are 16-thread parts. :D
 
M3rcy
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:04 pm

JustAnEngineer wrote:
Ryzen 5 2600X + B450 Aorus M + 16 GiB DDR4 = $425 +tax

With Precision Boost 2, AMD's second-generation Ryzen CPUs offer even better performance for multiple threads than first-generation Ryzen.
https://techreport.com/review/33531/amd ... s-reviewed
https://techreport.com/review/33568/gam ... ryzen-cpus
https://techreport.com/review/33719/amd ... u-reviewed

Micro Center's in-store CPU deals are attractive.
$270 AMD Ryzen 7 2700X with Wraith Prism cooler ($330 at Newegg)
or $190 AMD Ryzen 5 2600X with Wraith Spire cooler ($230 at Newegg)
The Ryzen 5 has only 6 cores /12 threads, but it offers almost the same per-thread performance for $80 or $100 less than the 8-core/16-thread Ryzen 7. If you keep this system for as long as you have kept the Wolfdale going, that difference is less than 70¢ a month. :lol:

Micro Center will sweeten the deal by offering an additional $30 discount if you bundle your new CPU with specific motherboards, but there are no micro-ATX or mini-ITX bundle deals for the 2700X or 2600X. Of the first wave of micro-ATX motherboards with the B450 chipset, the $85 (or $87) Gigabyte B450 Aorus M has the best arrangement of PCIe slots. If you need to install more than two double-width PCIe X16 cards plus a PCIe x1 card that would fit into that micro-ATX motherboard, then the Gigabyte X470 Aorus Gaming 5 WiFi is just $140 -20MIR in a bundle (vs. $184 at Newegg) but that's quite a bit more expensive than a B450 option outside of the bundle.

I do not believe that you should spend money on a wimpy Pentium Gold build. Your Intel options should be the 6-core/12-thread Core i7-8700K or a future 8-core/8-thread Core i7-9700K.

DDR4 prices have been dropping very slowly since the crypto-currency bubble has finally begun to collapse. Memory prices are still elevated significantly from where they were a couple of years ago. 16 GiB of memory will set you back $170 at Micro Center (or $150 at Newegg) as 2x8 GiB of PC4-25600 G.Skill F4-3200C16D-16GV (DDR4-3200, 16-18-18-38, 1.35 V).

Take a look at SeaSonic's Focus Plus line of power supplies.
$115 -25MIR SeaSonic Focus Plus Platinum SSR-650PX
or $80 -15MIR SeaSonic Focus Plus Gold SSR-550FX


I think this is your best advice right here.

Step down to a 2600X to save some $$$ and if you find that you really need/want more cores leaked roadmaps show 7nm "Zen 2" chips scheduled for 2019 that might make for a reasonable upgrade (and you can Ebay the old CPU to recover some of the cost). An advantage of investing in the AMD platform is upgrading to new generations of CPU is less likely to require a motherboard upgrade.
 
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Tue Aug 14, 2018 4:37 pm

Wait till the week of Thanksgiving (if you're in the US) and build it "right"

Intel 9th gen should be out by then (rumored October launch) so it could put some downward pricing pressure on AMD
RAM has been steadily creeping down, a little more time never hurts
You're most likely to be able to get every component on sale during that week
There are Visa and/or Mastercard promos on newegg that week that could save you an extra $25 per $200 worth of components
Main: i5-3570K, ASRock Z77 Pro4-M, MSI RX480 8G, 500GB Crucial BX100, 2 TB Samsung EcoGreen F4, 16GB 1600MHz G.Skill @1.25V, EVGA 550-G2, Silverstone PS07B
HTPC: A8-5600K, MSI FM2-A75IA-E53, 4TB Seagate SSHD, 8GB 1866MHz G.Skill, Crosley D-25 Case Mod
 
Takeshi7
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Re: Do a stop-gap build? Or go whole hog? ("Pentium Gold" v. "Ryzen," and other curiosities)

Tue Aug 14, 2018 5:10 pm

If I were you, I'd just get a Ryzen 2200G, an ASRock AB350 Pro4 (because it's cheap and ASRock is the only B350 board that has the 2nd PCIe x16 slot hooked up to that good PCIe 3.0 from the CPU), and the bare minimum amount of DDR4 RAM you need. That combined with the hardware you have should be enough to at least tide you over for a while.

Then the real build comes after the next generation of consoles is released. I always wait until the next generation of consoles is released, and then I build my gaming PC to be a bit more powerful than the consoles. That way I will have a PC that can play that entire generation of games. I've built PCs in the middle or end of console life cycles and just regretted how quickly it becomes obsolete after the new consoles are released.

At least this way you'll have a huge upgrade path with AM4

That's my suggestion.

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