i5 2500k still viable?

skunkone

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My video card finally crapped out so I needed to replace it, and one thing led to another and i decided i'd finally upgrade my old rig. This had happened before and I went from an old 8800gts to the 9800gt and it was a good upgrade. At that time I only also upgraded my cpu/mb/ram. Was running an old allendale 1.8 o/c to 3.2 on a zalman cooler. But i never put anything else into it, so it's long overdue. This is how it currently stands.

Current Setup:

AMD Athlon II X3 450 Rana Triple-Core 3.2 GHz Socket AM3 95W -4th core unlocked
GIGABYTE GA-880GMA-UD2H AM3
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) F3-10666CL9D-4GBNQ
BFG Tech GeForce 9800 GT BFGE981024GTGE 1GB 256-Bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16
Thermaltake TR2 W0070 430W ATX12V v2.3 PSU
Western Digital Caviar SE 160GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s HD
COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW
LITE-ON Black 20X DVD+R 2MB Cache SATA DVD Burner
Rosewill RCR-102 52-in-1 USB 2.0 3.5" Internal Card Reader w/ USB port
Asus VE248H Black 24" 2ms Full HD HDMI LED Backlight LCD Monitor
PCI express to SATA III card
970gb storage-6 Sata HD's- various sizes-
(160gb, 250gb, 80gb, 160gb, 120gb, 200gb) 3.5", 2.5"



So far on the way I have:

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) F3-10666CL9D-4GBNQ
ASUS GeForce GTX295
HGST/Hitachi (HUA723020ALA641) Ultrastar 7K3000 2TB 64MB 7200RPM 3.5" Enterprise
SEASONIC X-series Ss-650km ACTIVE PFC 650w X-650 PSU

the ram was cheap at $24 so i figured why not without thinking, i guess i hoped i could use it for the next build. And GPU, HD, PSU were each $50 each because my old TR2 only has an 18a rail which is not the required 50a the GPU needs, and I figured it was time to get rid of all the HD's and consolidate, less heat and power consumption. I heard HGST was reliable. The GPU i thought was a good deal and an upgrade, old tech, runs hot, but still a contender. I run with an open case anyway.

Still left to get

CPU, MB, CASE, SSD.

I'm for sure getting SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 250GB SATA III, i have one in the laptop and it flies.

I wanted to go Mini itx with a cooler master elite 130 build to save space on my desk, but they don't make a board that can support 4 ram slots to use what i have now, wasn't thinking, and not feeling like ordering another set. So now it's just micro atx. Any thoughts on a case and mb in that form factor? I only need usb 3.0, built in hdmi or dvi, 4 ram slots, and o/c options. Don't think i'll ever run sli.

Here is where I am stuck though, do I go
I5-2500K ($200)

3570k
($290)

4690k
($240).

I could even go
fx-6300 BE ($90) or I3-4170 ($120)

Anything would be higher on the hierarchy chart at this point. I know benchmarks show the 2500k is only about 10% slower than the new stuff, but probably 1000% faster than what i got now. But now that I'm looking at those prices, I really don't think i can bring myself to pay $240 or $290, even $200 is a stretch. But if the 2500k is still viable and worth the money over 6300BE prices up to $150, then it's worth considering. I'd like to stay quad core if possible since i multitask on it and always run multiple clients. I've always overclocked, but for now i'll run stock temps till i buy a better cooler or go closed loop. That's a few months down the line, I'd like the option though if once i see my speeds I want to bump it up, that's why I'd go "K". I think any upgrade at this point would make me happy. I'm sure with the SSD, GPU and extra ram overall it will be faster. It's not like i play battlefied or crysis after all, my games are not that graphic intensive. Whatever choice I'd make i probably wouldn't upgrade again for another 5 years, since that's how long i've been rocking what i got and been reasonably happy, though better graphics and less lag would make me so happy.

I currently use the desktop for everything but mostly gaming, once i get it upgraded, i'll use my laptop for everything else business, productivity wise. So that will leave my desktop for just gaming only and the occasional web browsing up to 25 tabs on average. Temps are cool in the room usually 65-70. I would also be watching movies on it and eventually get another monitor, exact same size. I used to overclock the cpu but my psu was holding me back. I feel the lack of ram and aging cpu limit me, the 9800gt held up pretty well considering.

Games played are
Battle of the Immortals x3 clients
WOW
Heroes of the storm
Starcraft
Diablo 3
Minecraft with 30+mods
Torchlight 2
Rocket League
Borderlands 2
Hand of Fate



 

sammy sung

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Really interesting thread, not gonna lie.

It's a shame you already got the 295! I still own two MSI GTX 295's. While back in the day they were excellent(when not used in quad SLI lol) today the scaling is likely worse, though I could be wrong, I haven't used them in a while. The theoretical frame push of a single 295 falls somewhere between a 750 Ti and a 760, looking at my old bench spreadsheets. While consuming way way more power and definitely running quite a bit hotter.

I might have missed where you mentioned your resolution, but if you're on 1080p, kiss your minimum frame rate good bye. The 896mb of usable video memory is going to max out on just about every title imaginable. If I had to choose a card from the 2xx series, I'd have opted for a single 285. More consistent play

Now whereas your actual question is concerned, the newer platform is worth the little extra money. An upgrade should only be made if the hardware gained would "HAVE" to be upgraded again within the next 3-4 years or so, within reason. Jumping to a 2500K would feel like a world's difference at first. But it won't be long at all before even a decently overclocked 2500K starts to fall pretty far behind on more processor bound titles like the ones we've seen recently.
 

overco

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The 2500k is still a solid processor. Games still quite haven't made it obsolete.
BUT, I would personally grab a 4690k. Still able to run everything fine.

Also, I would not recommend the FX-6300, as it is not a nearly as powerful as a 2500k. Regardless of the so-called "6-cores @3.5ghz+"
 

Tsorg

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I've been using 2500k for almost 2 years (bought on December 2013) and can say that while playing games the load on it very rarely goes over 70% (using MSI Afterburner OSD to view Framerate, load and tempereatures on GPU/CPU) so it has never been a bottleneck for me. At idle it goes for 1.4GHz 25C which sometimes up's itself to 1.8GHz by working programs. While gaming for instance Witcher 3 Ultra at 2560x1080p or Diablo3 DSR'ed to 3440x1440p it goes up to 3.4GHz 72C. I am an overclocker and had GPU and Monitor overclocked but I never had any needs to overclock the CPU. If I were to buy a new CPU in case this one breaks down I would go for i5-4690K.
 

RJMadCat

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The problem with the Ram you bought is that it is slower than the standard atm, should be looking for 1600+ for current motherboards. I have a i7 2600 and it still runs perfectly, so my mobo currently supports 1333 ram, I suspect yours too.

if you want a new mobo and CPU I suggest going for a i5 4690
 

Super_Nova

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The 2500k is an excellent cpu it might be 10% slower but if you overclock (and it overclocks great) it, the gap between the later generations becomes very small. You can still make a excellent pc with a 2500k. that can handle every game it gets thrown at. If you are on a thight budget, then it is a very good choice. If you can spend more however, I would go for the 4690k. since it is newer.
If my 2500k. kicks the bucket I think I will buy a 3770k.
 
I would not buy such an old processor and mobo platform, if I were you...unless the price is extremely good.
i5 2500k is still usable for games today but for some new high-end games, i5 2500k is already near limit.
People from i5 2xxx and i7 2xxx are starting to move to either Hasswell or Skylake.
The platform can still be used today but very long anymore before it became bottleneck.

 

skunkone

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I see what you mean, you would grab the 4690k because budget is not an issue? So fx is out, it's not worth saving $150? So with the specific games I listed that I only play and the requirements i have, you still say 2500k is not enough, spend the extra $40 for 4690k despite higher costs for a MB i assume? Off the top do you know if that platform will still allow the use of my 8gb's of ram? I get that it's newer tech, doesn't have a better roadmap right since i'd still have to do a MB swap if i wanted to upgrade to anything else right? thanks in advance.
 

skunkone

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I'm glad to see a post speaking well on the cpu, it shows promise as the benchmarks show after all. Coming from the 2500k i could see how that would be a good upgrade, but as you can see i have the rana, so from that the 2500k is worth jumping over and going for 4690k? Especially with the modest games I play?
 

skunkone

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I agree 100%, I see that most of the boards for this socket allow up to 2800 o/c most of the time, which means mine is way old. I was just trying to avoid having to get new ram and squeeze what life i could out of these sticks. I can see that there are a ton newer and even ddr 4! wow things have changed. So from my rana, skip 2500k and go for 4690? will there be a major MB cost increase in going 1150 from 1155?
 

skunkone

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well, yeah money is tight, which is why I am getting parts in bits and pieces. I got these so far so i can still keep playing. I'll probably save up to get MB, CPU, SSD and case. I saw a benchmark between the 2500k and 3770k i think and it was pretty close.
 

Tsorg

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In my opinion it's worth it and it comes down primary to two reasons.
Gaming industry, at least for past few years focused mostly on graphics fidelity, this is why CPU like 2500k from Jan 2011 handles so well. My guess is that it will stay that way for at least couple more years, which means if you buy a CPU right now, it will last for quite a while and 4690k is 22nm instead of 32nm. This means it will drain less power and will make your bills lower. By CPUBoss it has 20$ lower costs per year than 2500k. Source: http://cpuboss.com/cpus/Intel-Core-i5-4690K-vs-Intel-Core-i5-2500K so in 2 years you will get your 40$ difference.
 

skunkone

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when you say extremely good, what do you mean. I've seen Buy it now used on ebay for about $170-$200, i might get lucky and get it on auction closer to $100-$150 if i'm lucky, which might make me pull the trigger. I understand people going to haswell or skylake from 2500k, but i'm not even there, i still have athlon x3 rana. so anything is an upgrade.
 

skunkone

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the more and more i see people suggesting it, i'm starting to like it, i just need to see what the price on MB is going to be and if they make an mini itx board that takes 4 ram slots, if so that would be great, if not i'll stick to micro atx and hope it's not that expensive.
 

skunkone

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Tsorg:
very well put sir, best post yet. I can see myself buying the new cpu and keeping it for years like i did with my previous 5 year proc. By then if i save up, i'll upgrade again. And at that point it will just be CPU, MB, RAM anyway. So it's not like i'd be replacing whole system again. But I like the energy difference. You are right, i did read that it runs cooler and less watts. That does essentially pay for the difference. I think I'm now leaning towards the 4690k, I'm going to go look up some reviews and benchmarks on it real quick comparing it to the 2500k and seeing how much better it does.

2500k, take this for example, could be had for cheap..nvm, i missed out at $130, i found a 4690k for $200 new, so that might be the way i go.
 

sammy sung

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Really interesting thread, not gonna lie.

It's a shame you already got the 295! I still own two MSI GTX 295's. While back in the day they were excellent(when not used in quad SLI lol) today the scaling is likely worse, though I could be wrong, I haven't used them in a while. The theoretical frame push of a single 295 falls somewhere between a 750 Ti and a 760, looking at my old bench spreadsheets. While consuming way way more power and definitely running quite a bit hotter.

I might have missed where you mentioned your resolution, but if you're on 1080p, kiss your minimum frame rate good bye. The 896mb of usable video memory is going to max out on just about every title imaginable. If I had to choose a card from the 2xx series, I'd have opted for a single 285. More consistent play

Now whereas your actual question is concerned, the newer platform is worth the little extra money. An upgrade should only be made if the hardware gained would "HAVE" to be upgraded again within the next 3-4 years or so, within reason. Jumping to a 2500K would feel like a world's difference at first. But it won't be long at all before even a decently overclocked 2500K starts to fall pretty far behind on more processor bound titles like the ones we've seen recently.
 


For USD170-200 (€150-180), that is too high for an old processor, especially a second-handed one. I would go better with i5 4690k or i5 6600k for a few more bucks.
I dunno about the prices there where you live but that is already very near the price of a brand new i5 4590, here where I live.
i5 4590 is only 5% faster and can not be OCed but that 2500k is a second-handed one without warranty and unknown condition, and with that price? think again! You do not know how the previous owner OCed it..perhaps it reached heaven already several times without proper cooling...I hope you get the point here...

 

skunkone

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hey, glad you are able to give some insight on the GPU, thanks. yeah it's already on the way, now that doesn't mean I can't still sell it and get another, if that were the case what would you suggest I get that is the same I paid for the gtx295? ($50). Just to make sure, we are talking about the same card that toms in graphics heirarchy ranks 7 levels down from titan Z right? lol, it's soo much higher up that list from my 9800gt i thought i was doing good getting it. I knew heat and power was a challenge so I went with the Seasonic x650 to give it steady juice with that strong 53a rail. Cooling I still need to find a good case and build something that will keep it cool, i'm open to suggestions if you can think of something. I know i could use the help in designing something with airflow as i've not dealt with something so hot before.

Bare with me, you mention 1080p, which yes my monitor is (1920 x 1080 2ms GTG). What exactly do you mean by minimum frame rate? example please as this is the first time if heard that term. I know frames and fps, and I know higher is better and usually obtainable with a better card or lower resolutions.
You mention 896mb, you mean Memory Size 1792MB, Memory Interface 896 (448 x 2)-Bit, therefore 896mb is how "fat" the pipeline is through which the graphics cards transfers data? Or more lanes on a highway, or wider lanes on a highway right? therefore, are you saying the 1792mb of ram isn't enough or is enough but it's slow ddr3 and therefore the card would either need more vram or faster ddr 5 ram to utilize fully the 896bit? I think i understand, at least almost there. I'm trying.

I see your point on the future and how the 2500k would be like pinto to ferrari for me now (rana),
but I might want to get closer to the curve (4690k) since I'm not completely ahead of the curve yet (skylake).


Sidenote, if I were to get LG 25UM57-P, since the gtx295 claims 2560 x 1600 my desktop would be 2k but not all games unless it supports it correct? otherwise it would look tiny and windowed? thanks in advance.
 

skunkone

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I agree totally. That price seems high for something used. And your right, 90% of the 2500k's i've come across all say used-overclock to 4.5 or overclocked but on water. There is a huge risk spending that kind of money on something that has been pushed that much for years, even if it is 'K" and is made for that.
So used 2500k-$200=overpriced but new 4690k-$200=good deal? cause i've seen them for that price as of now.
makes sense, safer new buy, newer tech, lower energy bill, better lifespan on newer mb upgrade path (ram, chipset)

 

sammy sung

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The GTX 295 is a dual card GPU. Meaning two processing units on a single PCB. Like in other crossfire/SLI situations, both cards have their individual video memory, however in these set-ups the memory is not stacked, meaning only the full memory of any one card is used. This is because the cards take turns rendering pixels(which can cause micro stutter)

Because of this the stated 1792mb VRAM becomes a usable 896mb, which at 1080p(the higher the res the more video memory it'll use up) is a gimp. Once the game reaches a point where it's needing to draw more resources from the card's allotted memory, but the card is already pressed to the ceiling, you begin to see more throttling. That in tandem with the micro stutter you receive from the SLI configuration, your minimum frame rate(the lowest FPS you will witness at any given time) will drop pretty hard.

Not to mention that the GTX 295 is a DX10 card utilizing GDDR3 memory. Any DX11 or DX12 exclusives won't even work with this card.

These days I'd rather just buy current, lower end components, than old high end stuff. In the same way that Haswell/Skylake i3's wipe the floor with say a QX9770. Also for the same reason you wouldn't buy an old CRT Plasma screen TV over the kind of units we're used to seeing now.

Also, take most of our site's tier lists(with the exception of the power supply one generally) with a grain of salt. The graphic card list in particular is more of a point of reference, and really gauges lots of match-ups in a relative sense, rather than objectively placing cards where they'd best fit performance wise(taking draw backs into account). It also doesn't consider price and availability at all either. While that list has the 295 tiered along side a GTX 660 and an HD 7850, those two cards will out pace the 295 at 1080p all day long, with a much nicer minimum frame rate.

That's a tough budget for a decent case. But I'd look for something that already comes with adequate fans that don't need to be replaced. Something like this

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

Case: NZXT Source 220 ATX Mid Tower Case ($47.99 @ Directron)
Total: $47.99
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-08 14:38 EDT-0400
 

skunkone

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That's a tough budget for a decent case. But I'd look for something that already comes with adequate fans that don't need to be replaced. Something like this

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

Case: NZXT Source 220 ATX Mid Tower Case ($47.99 @ Directron)
Total: $47.99
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-08 14:38 EDT-0400[/quotemsg]


wait, i think you might have read it wrong, $50 is what i paid for the gtx295, I said what would you suggest i get in place of that card for the same amount of money ($50). It's either i keep the card unless i can sell this one and find another for the same price.

now the case I'm be ok with spending up to $100 if it's micro atx and has nice airflow inside. Example-SilverStone Temjin Series TJ08B-E
just not sure if i can use my 4 sticks of ram without it hitting the hard drive. I wouldn't mind adding Noctua NF-S12A PWM 120mm Case Fan to the rear.
 

sammy sung

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Oh

Well, there's definitely nothing new for $50. Used however there's no telling what you can find via ebay/craigslist/amazon. Likely nothing too much better than a 295 though. If you could find a 480 or 580 and haggle down the price that might be a stronger option. I've seen people selling regular 660's pretty cheap too
 

Tsorg

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As for side note I've bought myself a LG 29UM67-P this week and even with a little backlight bleed it's a superb gaming monitor. 25" ultrawide in my opinion is a bit too small for gaming and I think that you will crave for bigger size over time. The model I've mentioned is 29" which is a perfect size for 2560x1080p with very good pixel density and features like Freesync works even with Geforce cards (the screen tearing still happens but the native refresh of your monitor goes to 75Hz by default which made my gaming experience more smooth).

A little trivia with gaming at over 60Hz, at first when I tried 75Hz the games felt much more smooth than at 60Hz and I've found that my fps threshold is about 63-64FPS. When my fps drop below that I always take notice of it, guess my eyes acommodate to it.

 

-k means it is meant for oc but it does not tell you how the previous owner OC it e.g if he even picked a good cooling system, etc. This is one of the risks for going after a second-handed items.
If you can get a brand new i5 4690k for USD200 or even above that, I would pick i5 4690k rather than that second-handed 2500k.
Warranty, newer tech, lower energy bill, etc, are reasons enough to get at least the i5 4690k, if you can still afford it go even further for i5 6600k for the better mobo chipset. If not, i5 4690k is already good.
i5 6600k is about equal to i5 4690k but the Z170 is quite a lot better than Z97 in term of features e.g. DDR4 support.


 

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