Gamers: Do You Need More Than An Athlon II X3?

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DSpider

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Well, considering game developers first optimize the code for the Xbox 360 (with its THREE core CPU, go figure) and then for the PS3 (one central core and 7 small ones, of which one or two are locked or hidden, I think)... it's kinda obvious next-to-recent games can run pretty much ok on the x3 440. HOWEVER, in a year or so I may wish I got a quad core instead. Next next-gen consoles are around the corner (Xbox 720?) and future games' code may be distributed more efficiently on a hexa core, 8 threads, etc.

I'm considering purchasing a 440 because I missed A LOT of games over the years (still rolling on an AthlonXP 2200+, Geforce 4 MX440, 2x245 MB DDR1...) and have a lot of catching up with a lot of DirectX 9.0c titles, pixel shader 3.0, etc.

When the time comes, I could just upgrade the CPU, add an extra 2 GB of RAM (or 2 x 4 GB once 4 GB DIMMs are more common). Wonder if I can sell the 440 after it serves its purpose... Most people would probably stay away from used CPUs. I know I would. Who knows how much the guy clocked it and for how many months it stayed at 4 GHz... :) But considering it doesn't cost that much now, it probably won't sell for much in a couple of years either.
 

psiboy

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@ Dspider... man you likely wont be able to upgrade anything at all! Your motherboard wont handle a newer cpu... different sockets and all... just build a new box!
 

DSpider

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Of course I need to change the platform. I wasn't talking about upgrading my current rig, I was talking about upgrading my FUTURE rig when an x3 won't cut it.
 

ronka

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i cant imagine if one could buy 2x 5870.. but could not afford better CPU than 440 :)

the story is too unrealistic
 

randomkid

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Not at all. The conclusion say that if you will have only 1x5850/5870 GPU, the X3 440 will do just fine. The more powerful processors will still be recommended if you got more than that.
And that makes perfect sense to me...
 
G

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To be honest, I would have loved to seen how much of a difference would be visible in games that are notorious for their heavy CPU usage.

Examples:
*Microsoft Flight Simulator X
*X-Plane
*IL-2 Sturmovik 1946
...or even Halo: Combat Evolved or Halo 2 PC.

Something to also consider is that in some cases, performance per core is a more important variable than the total performance of the processor, because not all games - especially old venerable ones like IL-2 - support threaded processing.
 

vexun11

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I almost got one of those but I decided to not eat out for a week and not spend money on anything I didn't need and put that saved money towards it and got an i7 930
 

rana_kirti

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So guys what would be a Better path....???

1. Get Athlon X3 440+5850 and then when it cant play games at 1980x1020 then upgrade Cpu+Gpu+Mobo....??

or.

2. Get i7 930+5850 and then when it cant play games at 1980x1020 then add another 5850...??
 

DSpider

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There's also the upgrade path of the AM3 platform. If you grab one with a newer chipset (like the 8xx series) you may sell the x3 and get a second-gen x6. The x3 is pretty cheap so you won't lose much.

If you go the i7 way you could sell the 5850 and grab a second-gen Fermi. On i7 you'll also probably get 6 GB of RAM instead of 4 like on AMD. You may not need more RAM now, you may not need more later either. The way I seet it the ball is in the console park. Once the next next-gen consoles come out then we'll see.

The new AM3 chipsets have NATIVE support for SATA III and USB 3.0, Intel said not this year. So you should probably consider that too if you plan on getting an SSD in the near future (I know I am).
 

DSpider

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Oh, and while CPU cores may not matter much now (majority of the games are dual-core optimized) it may matter one or two years from now when next next-gen consoles pop up. Like the performance boost from a cheaper quad instead of a higher class dual-core I've read about on TH. The more code is distributed to more cores, the more efficient the game should perform.

Right now a quad is the norm and I would go with AMD on this one, with a newer chipset (8xx) that supports the Phenom II x6 for a future upgrade. The Intel hexacore (i7 980x) is very high priced and I don't see Intel releasing cheaper hexas on socket 1366 because next year they plan to change sockets (again) with LGA 1155 instead of LGA 1156 and LGA 2011 instead of LGA 1366...
 

cleeve

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[citation][nom]rana_kirti[/nom]So guys what would be a Better path....???1. Get Athlon X3 440+5850 and then when it cant play games at 1980x1020 then upgrade Cpu+Gpu+Mobo....??or.2. Get i7 930+5850 and then when it cant play games at 1980x1020 then add another 5850...??[/citation]

You forgot option 3:

Get Athlon X3 440+5850 and then when it cant play games at 1980x1020 then add a second 5850 and use the money you saved on the CPU in the first place to get a Phenom II X4
 

rana_kirti

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Cleeve.... Thanks for the tip of Option no. 3...

However What would be better... when the Athlon X3+5850 cant play games at 1980x1020...

1. To get a Phenon II X4 + add another 5850

or

2. To get a Phenom II X4 + Replace 5850 with another GPU of that time that will be able to play games of that time at 1980 x 1080

The reason for asking is that...

If i go with "Option 1" in mind then i will have to buy/start with a Crossfire Mobo along with my Athlon II X3 at this point in time so that i can add another 5850 to it later....

However if i go with keeping "Option 2" in mind then i can currently start with a non Crossfire/Cheaper AM3 Mobo which will save me money.

Also if i go with "Option 2" of a Single 5850 now and replace it with a Single
5850 equivalent of that time or rather any card at that point in time which would be able to play games at 1980 x 1080 then i can start with a "Micro ATX AMD Motherboard" and have a much Smaller Case on my Desktop with a Single Card Solution.

Is that a Good Idea...???

So then considering the above mentioned equations... which path do you suggest that i take...??

Also i see that all the benchmarks at 1980 x 1080 were done with AA & AF turned "OFF". If AA & AF be turned "ON" would it then make the Athlon X3 not capable of giving Respectable Minimum & Average FPS....??

Thanks in Anticipation...
 

DSpider

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[citation][nom]Brokencage[/nom]hmmm you test a tri Channel cpu with L3 cache against a dual channel cpu with 1.5MB of L2 cache & no L3??LMAO[/citation]
They did some tests a few months back with and without the L3 cache to see if it really helps and it didn't. Not in gaming anyway. Not by much. So if you can put that money somewhere else (like better graphics or some other component in the build) why not ? By all means, get a cheappy CPU. Just don't get stingy on the PSU. I'm on my third no-name "octopus" in 5 years. All from different stores. And a better case (you'll thank me later).
 

joeyck

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persoanlly the AMD "low End" CPUs (which r really high end :p) are great no reason for an i7... also u have a lot of OC head room with the x3 440 and shoot u can even even unlock would be nice ya no? i would pair the x3 440 with a 5770 /4850 / 4870 / 4890 / GTS 250 / GTX460 / all the 200 series Nvidia's

x3 44o is a creat budget tri core possible quad core w/ a possibility of unlocking cache.
 

ohseus

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[citation][nom]dgingeri[/nom]you guys didn't test World of Warcraft. Currently, it is extensively CPU intensive, and I don't see that changing. [/citation]

The problem with trying to test WoW is that it is affected by far more than just CPU/Video. Performance in it is going to be subject to your current latency and the number of people in an area and how many spells they may be casting. In a game such as Crysis a level is not goiong to change significantly.
 

ohseus

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I, for one, would be curious to see a phenom used in the same test for the sake of seeing the the difference the 4th core and an L3 cache make.
 
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