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KJ_A
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Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 11:32 am

I am in need of a system upgrade but unlike the last time I am on a bit of a budget. So I am keeping all peripherals and reusing my CM 690 case, optical drive, and temporarily my 650w PSU. I will replace the PSU when I have the money to do so.

What I consider critical are a new Motherboard, CPU, RAM, and GPU. As you can see in my signature I still have my old Core i7 920 on an Asus P6T board from when I first built my system. The GTX 760 (originally a GTX 275) and Corsair XMS3 12GB RAM (up from 6GB) were past upgrades that also need replacement. I would like to get modern components that offer superior performance to what I have. I was thinking 32 GB of RAM. I would like a processor that is superior on both a per core and multi-thread basis to what I have now and a GPU that I can max out the graphics setting for the majority of recent games as long as I am running the resolution at the 1920x1200 of my existing monitor.

The latest TR System Guide is from January and so is six months out of date. Could I have some advice on what Motherboard, CPU, RAM, and GPU you would recommend?
Core i7 920, Asus P6T, GTX 760, Corsair XMS3 12GB RAM, WD 2003 Black, WD 1501 Black, WD 640 Black, LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray/HD DVD, CORSAIR 650TX, Sunbeam CR-CCTF, HP LP2475w, Logitech Z-5500, steelseries Apex 350, Logitech G500s, CM 690, Win7 Ultimate 64bit
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 12:15 pm

If you can wait a couple of weeks the AMD Ryzen 3000-series reviews should appear. At a guess, the Ryzen 5 3600 and a B450 motherboard are going to be the sweet spot for most people, and that's a $200 CPU in a $100 motherboard. Leaked reviews and sales listings have meant that very little information is unknown at this point. Official launch is in 3 days. You could always go the Intel route but their prices are high, availability is spotty, and their performance advantage over AMD has been whittled away by a never-ending torrent of performance-sapping mitigation patches to fix the security flaws in their current architecture. They haven't been the best productivity choice for a while because AMD give you more cores and threads at any given price point - and their last stronghold (gaming and single-threaded performance) has been beaten at much lower costs in the benchmark and review leaks of the 3000-series.

For games, 16GB RAM is ample and rumours point towards Ryzen 3000-series allowing and benefitting from faster speeds so pick up one of the current deals on DDR4-3600 kits.

As far as GPUs go, The ridiculously-named "RTX 2060 Super" at $400 is going to handle every AAA game now at 1920x1200 and give you some breathing room; The direct competition to that will be the AMD RX5700, announced but due out shortly.

If you're after the sweet-spot for 1920x1200 right now, good options are the GTX 1660Ti at $280ish or a more budget-conscious RX 570 8GB at around $150 which is adequate for now and leaves you some money in the pot to upgrade when needed.

If you're not in a huge hurry, grab yourself a popcorn and keep an eye out over the next few days for reviews of the Ryzen 5 3600 and the RX 5700. Even if predictions are wrong and they don't turn out to be the new standard, they will at least disrupt the market enough to make alternative recommendations hard to guess right now.
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KJ_A
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 1:16 pm

Thanks for the advice. No I am not in a hurry, just in the next six months or so. In fact I was thinking about buying a component a month for four months.
Core i7 920, Asus P6T, GTX 760, Corsair XMS3 12GB RAM, WD 2003 Black, WD 1501 Black, WD 640 Black, LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray/HD DVD, CORSAIR 650TX, Sunbeam CR-CCTF, HP LP2475w, Logitech Z-5500, steelseries Apex 350, Logitech G500s, CM 690, Win7 Ultimate 64bit
 
JustAnEngineer
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 1:35 pm

KJ_A wrote:
I was thinking about buying a component a month for four months.
Please don't do this. There aren't a lot of durable goods that depreciate or become obsolete faster than new PC components that you've purchased but not yet installed. You should purchase your new CPU, motherboard and memory all at the same time. Since installing those components is also going to require an OS install, I would include the Windows license and an SSD in that same purchase. The graphics card is the exception. You can easily upgrade it independently of the rest of the PC.

Other than that, Chrispy_ mentioned the excellent new hardware options (Ryzen 5 3600 or Ryzen 7 3700X CPUs and Radeon RX 5700 or GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER graphics cards) that will be arriving in the next two weeks.
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 1:46 pm

If money is really really tight, another option would be to wait until the RyZen 3000 series is released, then see if you can get some clear-out deals on a RyZen 2000 series CPU and corresponding 400 series motherboard. The performance would not be as good as the 3000 series, but would be a definite step up from your 920.
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just brew it!
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 2:43 pm

JustAnEngineer wrote:
KJ_A wrote:
I was thinking about buying a component a month for four months.

Please don't do this. There aren't a lot of durable goods that depreciate or become obsolete faster than new PC components that you've purchased but not yet installed.

The only way it potentially makes sense to do it piecemeal like that is if you're aiming to put together something based on slightly older tech to save some cash, so the parts are already a couple or more years old. In that case, sure, buy stuff when you see a good deal or closeout sale on something that's compatible with the planned build. But it doesn't sound like that's what you're trying to do here.

I tend to screw myself by buying parts fully intending to build now, then getting busy and not building the system for months. So by the time I actually do the build, I could've gotten the same parts for less, or better parts for the same price. You'd think I would've learned by now. Case in point: I've had the parts for a Ryzen 2700X build since late winter. It's still just a pile of parts. Maybe I'll finally get around to building it this weekend...
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 2:57 pm

just brew it! wrote:
JustAnEngineer wrote:
KJ_A wrote:
I was thinking about buying a component a month for four months.

Please don't do this. There aren't a lot of durable goods that depreciate or become obsolete faster than new PC components that you've purchased but not yet installed.

The only way it potentially makes sense to do it piecemeal like that is if you're aiming to put together something based on slightly older tech to save some cash, so the parts are already a couple or more years old. In that case, sure, buy stuff when you see a good deal or closeout sale on something that's compatible with the planned build. But it doesn't sound like that's what you're trying to do here.

I tend to screw myself by buying parts fully intending to build now, then getting busy and not building the system for months. So by the time I actually do the build, I could've gotten the same parts for less, or better parts for the same price. You'd think I would've learned by now. Case in point: I've had the parts for a Ryzen 2700X build since late winter. It's still just a pile of parts. Maybe I'll finally get around to building it this weekend...


Wow. That's all I can say about that.
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CScottG
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 3:47 pm

just brew it! wrote:

I tend to screw myself by buying parts fully intending to build now, then getting busy and not building the system for months. So by the time I actually do the build, I could've gotten the same parts for less, or better parts for the same price. You'd think I would've learned by now. Case in point: I've had the parts for a Ryzen 2700X build since late winter. It's still just a pile of parts. Maybe I'll finally get around to building it this weekend...


I've done this as well..

-and it's not just that problem.


More than a few builds I've done (over the past 25 years), something went wrong with one of the 3 components (*return and replace): CPU (almost never), RAM/system-memory (a couple of times), and Motherboard: FREQUENTLY.

You need all 3 to figure-out what (if anything) has gone wrong.

*the BIG problem here is returning the items after a month (and sometimes less than that), even if only to get "identical" replacement parts.


I've also had problems with storage (SSD, and far more-so: Hard Disks), but often the storage goes bad after the return period. (..though with some of those hard disk purchases the items started "clicking" right away - likely from shipping/poor-handling.)


One of the nicer things here is the OS..

If it's a Linux distro it's probably free-to-use, and if it's Windows 10 then you've got an almost indefinite "Trial" period (before you have to put in a valid key): so that's something that can be "put-off" purchase-wise while still allowing the use of it during your system assembly/hardware-check.
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Jul 04, 2019 4:06 pm

Yeah, the returns issue is potentially problematic as well, though I tend to research my purchases pretty carefully and/or buy only brands I've had very good luck with in the past, so I haven't had to return many parts. Hopefully the current build goes without incident, since I'm gonna be relying on manufacturer's warranty at this point.

The worst ones are the transition points where you move to an incompatible new tech. New CPU socket, DRAM generation change, or storage interface (e.g. SATA -> NVMe), since you have nothing else you can swap in to troubleshoot unless you buy or borrow another one.
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KJ_A
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Sun Sep 08, 2019 3:28 pm

Okay, finally getting back to you. I am looking at an AMD RYZEN 7 3700X CPU and a GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER graphics card.

What advice do you have on a specific motherboard and RAM chip set to go with them?
Core i7 920, Asus P6T, GTX 760, Corsair XMS3 12GB RAM, WD 2003 Black, WD 1501 Black, WD 640 Black, LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray/HD DVD, CORSAIR 650TX, Sunbeam CR-CCTF, HP LP2475w, Logitech Z-5500, steelseries Apex 350, Logitech G500s, CM 690, Win7 Ultimate 64bit
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Sun Sep 08, 2019 4:03 pm

Did you consider a Radeon RX 5700XT? For the same price, it outperforms the GeForce RTX 2060SUPER.
https://techreport.com/review/3464684/n ... -reviewed/


For memory, what do you think of these options?
$150 2x16 GiB G.Skill F4-3600C19D-32GVRB (DDR4-3600, 19-20-20-40, 1.35V)
$140 2x16 GiB Crucial BLS2K16G4D32AESE (DDR4-3200, 16-18-18-??, 1.35V) - use code EMCTETW45 for $17 off
$140 2x 16 GiB Crucial BLS16G4D32AESE (DDR4-3200, 16-18-18-??, 1.35V) - use code 72SEPSL48
i7-9700K, NH-D15, Z390M Pro4, 32 GiB, RX Vega64, Define Mini-C, SSR-850PX, C32HG70+U2407, RK-9000BR, MX518
 
KJ_A
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Sun Sep 08, 2019 4:54 pm

Okay, on the RAM sets, those look good. Also it seems I was misreading the graph over on the review page for the GPUs. The only thing is, I have never had an AMD GPU before so I am on the fence about switching brand.
Core i7 920, Asus P6T, GTX 760, Corsair XMS3 12GB RAM, WD 2003 Black, WD 1501 Black, WD 640 Black, LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray/HD DVD, CORSAIR 650TX, Sunbeam CR-CCTF, HP LP2475w, Logitech Z-5500, steelseries Apex 350, Logitech G500s, CM 690, Win7 Ultimate 64bit
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:43 am

The general consensus on all the review sites is the 5700 and 5700XT are the bang-for-buck champs at present. The RTX cards are certainly not bad cards, but you're spending more than you have to if you get them instead of the Radeons.

Just make sure you buy a model with a custom cooler, not the reference blower.
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Tue Sep 10, 2019 1:58 pm

Is there a need for 32GB of RAM instead of 16GB? Especially if it's a 4-slot mobo.
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:11 am

meerkt wrote:
Is there a need for 32GB of RAM instead of 16GB? Especially if it's a 4-slot mobo.


Agreed -- more than 16GB is really only needed if you're doing something memory intensive (video editing, photo editing with very large images, large databases, that sort of thing). As an example, when I'm gaming at 1440, my overall RAM usage typically tops out at around 12 GB. For general use and games 16GB is more than enough.

If you have a motherboard with 4 ram slots, you can get 2x8GB relatively inexpensively. Then if you find you really do need 32GB at some point down the road, you can easily add another 2x8GB (probably even cheaper at that time).
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Thu Sep 12, 2019 10:52 pm

If you're looking for a premium X570 motherboard, how about:
$190 Asus TUF Gaming X570-Plus

If you're looking for an inexpensive B450 motherboard, how about:
$90 ASRock B450M Steel Legend
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KJ_A
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:37 pm

Core i7 920, Asus P6T, GTX 760, Corsair XMS3 12GB RAM, WD 2003 Black, WD 1501 Black, WD 640 Black, LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray/HD DVD, CORSAIR 650TX, Sunbeam CR-CCTF, HP LP2475w, Logitech Z-5500, steelseries Apex 350, Logitech G500s, CM 690, Win7 Ultimate 64bit
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:30 pm

Those generally look good to me.

Once again, I would ask if 32GB is necessary. If you have a task that you intend to do right away that requires that much RAM then fair enough, but if you're just thinking in terms of future-proofing, you can save a little money by going 2x8GB and fill in the other 2 slots if/when you need it.
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:48 pm

RAM is relatively cheap right now; I see no harm there. The $200 motherboard stands out to me. I'd be looking to knock it down $50-80 if possible.
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:13 pm

You might want to upgrade sooner than later. Word on the block is that TSMC's 7nm process is experiencing unexpected demand and limited supplies. They will inevitability be price hikes for current AMD SKUs. It is unlikely demand will alleviate on Intel side.
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KJ_A
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Tue Sep 17, 2019 4:06 pm

I have the above items in my New Egg shopping cart right now. I just want to finalize my motherboard selection.

I would like a motherboard with on board High Definition Audio, and a similar number of I/O ports and connectors (USB, SATA, S/PDIF Out, ect.) as the "Asus P6T" that I am replacing has.

Here is a link to my present MB's specs. https://www.asus.com/us/Motherboards/P6T/specifications/
Core i7 920, Asus P6T, GTX 760, Corsair XMS3 12GB RAM, WD 2003 Black, WD 1501 Black, WD 640 Black, LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray/HD DVD, CORSAIR 650TX, Sunbeam CR-CCTF, HP LP2475w, Logitech Z-5500, steelseries Apex 350, Logitech G500s, CM 690, Win7 Ultimate 64bit
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:05 pm

The Egg wrote:
The $200 motherboard stands out to me. I'd be looking to knock it down $50-80 if possible.
The cheapest X570 motherboard available is $150. Of course, the Ryzen 7 3700X and the memory selected are both compatible with a $65 B450 motherboard, if you don't want PCIe 4.0.

If you believe that 16 GiB of memory will be enough, it's available for $76.
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The Egg
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:51 am

I'm really not a big fan of X570, with its annoying 40mm active cooling and high prices. Just feels like an overall unpolished product, and PCIe 4.0 won't be a factor for some time unless you're planning to use enterprise-class SSDs. If you can get a solid B450 board for $65-85, I'd probably go that route. Heck, at that price you could almost just buy another board later if a better chipset gets released (and you feel it necessary).

Regarding ports, I've been noticing that even as prices go up, more and more boardmakers are removing external SPDIF connections from the rear I/O. One example is the near-identical B450 cousin to my H370M Plus, but it's really most everything below the stupid-expensive models now. When I built my new system last year, somehow it completely slipped my mind until it came time to connect my DAC. I ended up having to buy a cheap breakout board, since they included no solution. Annoying, but it's also not worth spending an additional $100+ for one feature. On the bright side, I'll already have my breakout board next time, and won't have to worry about it (beyond making sure they still have an internal header).

I also use a similar breakout slot for eSATA ports. Much more reliable to use regular internal SATA ports from the main chipset than some stupid 3rd party controller with flaky drivers. I usually connect to the least accessible (for instance, sideways-mounted) SATA ports so they can be useful for something.
 
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Re: Need Advice On An Overdue System Upgrade.

Wed Sep 18, 2019 4:50 am

I agree that it's annoying that X570 socket AM4 motherboards have been priced into the same range as Z390-equipped LGA1151v2 boards, but when AMD matched (and in several ways exceeded) Intel's desktop performance, their motherboard partners realized that they could match prices, too.

It's the PCIe 4.0 capability that has also ontributed to the cost of X570 motherboards. To ensure signal integrity with the higher speed, higher-end X570 boards use 6 layers. 4-layer printed circuit boards are much easier & cheaper to produce than boards with more layers.

Here's a table of 266 motherboards, if you're wanting to search for specific features for your application:
https://forums.tomshardware.com/threads ... s.3110172/
The offerings in the $360 range seem to check all of the boxes except that the price is ridiculous.
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