Is this the best build for gaming and workstation? Advice needed

MozzaGamer

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I’m looking to build a 4k powerful gaming pc. I already have a gaming pc but having thought to upgrade my current pc it will cost a lot so I may as well build a new pc. Please give me advice if this build will last 4-5 years at least before needing to upgrade again and I’m open to change any parts if needed. Guidance on the best CPU for gaming and rendering/video editing/workstation are much appreciated too. Below is my “planned” build. My current pc is in my sig if anyone wants to have a look at it.

Link to my “planned” 4k build here: https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/list/bKdzw6

That link has the major stuff, sound card will be sound blaster Z not ZX. The same sound card I have in my current pc.

Price to be exact: £4777
With the acer predator x27 monitor costing £1760 the total amount will be: £6537

I can buy a soundbar + subwoofer for around £100 as it may be needed.
 

MozzaGamer

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I’m sure you’ve seen my current build in my signature. Do you think it’s worth getting a new pc for 4k hdr gaming and movies? And I could use my current pc for the wide screen space and general stuff? Because upgrading my current rig would cost £3060 for the rtx 2080 ti and 4k monitor which would only last 1-2 years given my old cpu and other parts. So I figured I may aswell build a new pc since it’s expensive enough to upgrade my current rig for 4k stuff.
 

volkgren

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Seems like you are way over budgeting. But if you like the good stuff and want to spend the money who am I to talk you out of it. My build is double the price it should be. Your i7-6700K would be good enough for 4K gaming and if you did decide to upgrade in 1-2 years it shouldn't cost anywhere neat that much and there will be newer and better CPUs out by then. The i9-9900K right now is a pretty good CPU since you have the budget. It will be faster at gaming than the i9-9940X.
 

MozzaGamer

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Thanks for your input. Can you explain to me why and how the 9900K will be better and faster for gaming and workstation stuff like editing videos rendering etc than the 9940X or any cpu along those lines? As I’m trying to invest in a CPU and overall gaming build that will be future proof. And hopefully the pc will last me 4-5 years before I need to upgrade again.
 

MozzaGamer

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But the 9940X is faster than the 9900K because it has more cores, threads and and is pretty much the top tier of CPUs. I fail to see how just the gaming aspect alone how a 9900K performs better than a 9940X or XE series? For rendering and all of that yes K CPUs are weak in that department but I fail to understand how K series are better for gaming when they’re not faster?
 

logainofhades

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I would probably go with threadripper. Going to multitask better, and at 4k, the gaming differences would be minimal. It's considerably cheaper as well.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: AMD - Threadripper 2950X 3.5 GHz 16-Core Processor (£814.39 @ CCL Computers)
CPU Cooler: NZXT - Kraken X72 Liquid CPU Cooler (£182.05 @ More Computers)
Motherboard: ASRock - X399 Taichi ATX TR4 Motherboard (£261.59 @ Amazon UK)
Memory: Corsair - Vengeance RGB Pro 32 GB (4 x 8 GB) DDR4-3000 Memory (£267.07 @ CCL Computers)
Storage: Samsung - 970 Evo 500 GB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive (£109.98 @ Aria PC)
Storage: Samsung - 860 Evo 2 TB 2.5" Solid State Drive (£299.59 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Video Card: Zotac - GeForce RTX 2080 Ti 11 GB GAMING AMP Video Card (£1170.79 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Case: Corsair - 780T ATX Full Tower Case (£179.95 @ More Computers)
Power Supply: EVGA - SuperNOVA G3 (EU) 1000 W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply (£119.99 @ CCL Computers)
Optical Drive: Pioneer - BDR-2209 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer (£123.00 @ Amazon UK)
Sound Card: Creative Labs - Sound Blaster Zx 24-bit 192 kHz Sound Card
Total: £3528.40
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2019-01-22 21:36 GMT+0000

 

volkgren

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K-series CPUs have the highest frequency out of all Intel CPUs. That is how it is faster for gaming, because games can only use so many threads (typically 8 cores and 8 threads is the sweet spot for gaming today). More cores and threads than 8 will only help in a select few number of games. Like 1 or 2 games, literally. Every other game will benefit from the 5.0GHz boost of the 9900K more than they will the 14 cores of the 9940X at a max boost of 4.4GHz. Even both overclocked, the 9900K overclocks to a higher frequency than the 9940X. K-series have always been faster in the frequency department. X-series offer overclocking and more cores, but more cores come at a compromise of more heat and power required, so they tend to lose some of the high-end frequency.

Look at the single-core and quad-core speed difference. https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i9-9900K-vs-Intel-Core-i9-9940X/4028vsm641326

Saying one is faster than the other depends on the workload. A Corvette is faster than a Semi-truck; but what if you are measuring how fast it can move 80,000lbs of something? That is when the 9940X is faster than the 9900K, when a lot of work is needing to be done. But just gaming, the higher frequency will get the job done quicker.

*PS: Saying K-series are weak at rendering is somewhat misleading. It depends on the rendering requirements and expectations. For most home/personal users they are still quite strong for rendering, especially the 8th and 9th-gen i7 and i9.
 

MozzaGamer

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That's a good build but I have never had an AMD CPU in any of my builds. I have always thought that Intel are better than AMD and because of the Meltdown and Spectre issue that was circulating around about the AMD cpus. Although I have never looked into AMD specifically.

I understand Intel overprice their products and AMD undercut their prices. But performance matters most at the end of the day, and I'm looking for a CPU that will last me 4-5 years before I have to upgrade again. If I invest a lot of money in a new rig, I want it to be of great value and last a while. There is no point spending £6000 on a rig then 1-3 years down the line it can't even keep up with maxing out most games or game in 4K 100 fps+ smoothly.

Apart from that the acer predator x27 costs £1760. No other 4K monitor has the specs that monitor has that is cheaper.

It boils down to the CPU I guess. I want to go all out so either an i9 9940X as I want max performance for gaming and rendering/editing/creating videos and workstation tasks. Or I go for the fastest AMD cpu which is the 2990WX that holds 32 cores am I right? Going from 4-6 cores to 32 I wonder what will the difference feel like. Especially for gaming/workstation. Thanks for your input!





Well with my i7 6700k rendering is slow, especially when rendering ultrawide or 1 hour+ 1080p videos. Rendering takes 24+ hours lol. When I had a rig with an i7-3960X which I believe is a 6 core cpu, rendering definitely was A LOT faster and comparing the two cpus I can feel the difference. Very insightful post though buddy! Thank you!

EDIT: Also for gaming, are you basically saying the overclock in GHz more = better for gaming and is this higher frequency you speak of the overclock advantage only? because none of my past cpus were able to hit 5.0 GHz. Only when I had the i7 2600k it was able to get to 4.7 or 4.8GHz.

EDIT2: Forgot to mention this. Does gaming only rely on single core usage/speed rather than multi core usage/speed? so faster/higher single core speed cpus are technically better for gaming? As I'm unsure if this is true or not.
 

volkgren

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The stock clocks of the 9900K are higher; 3.6GHz - 5.0GHz vs 3.3GHz - 4.4Ghz

As I said, gaming typically uses up to 8-threads. More can help a little, but not as much as faster clock speeds.

If you are rending 1 hour+ videos, then you would benefit form more cores. Don't let me talk you out of it. I'm just saying, the 9900K will be slightly faster in 99% of games. But they are both going to be pretty darn fast in games.
 

MozzaGamer

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And the AMD 2990WX 32 core cpu? Also not as fast as the 9900k is for gaming? That edge the 9900k has over the X or XE cpus for gaming definitely bugs me. It boils down to how little or how much is the 9900K better or faster for gaming over the others? A link to a test between the 9900k and other cpus would be great if possible. Because I want max gaming performance and max workstation performance over any other cpus. Throw that cpu at me and I’ll call it a day lol. You’ve been a great help and have taught me a bit about how the cpus differ for gaming which I appreciate! So thanks for that.
 

volkgren

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Well you can search for more benchmarks. I just found this of the i9-9980XE, but then again it has an even lower base clock than the 9940X, so it's gaming performance is probably slightly lower. Either way, the gaming performance isn't much different, but Intel did purposefully make the i9-9900K the fastest gaming CPU in the world.

Intel i9 9980XE vs i9 9900K Benchmarks | Test Review | Comparison | Gaming | 13 Tests - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQ57WyzfIHU

 

MozzaGamer

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Thanks for posting the video. The only drawback I have with the 9900K is the workstation side of things. As I see for gaming specifically when overclocked to “5.0GHz” it shines past the X and XE series. That is in 1080p. For 4K gaming after research I’ve been reading that the 9900k cpu does not shine and the X and XE cpus are the same with that resolution. But 4K is where the GPU shines. I have yet to actually see benchmarks for the 9900k for 4K games. Why would someone invest in a 9900k cpu if they are to only game in 1080p? An i5 from 2014 can run 1080p games on max comfortably.

So I’m stuck on what CPU to choose basically. All other components like choosing an rtx 2080 ti, 32gb ram etc I have indeed settled with. Choosing a future proof CPU is a tough choice because say you want to upgrade your rig down the line. You (gamers) and like myself with my current rig face the ultimate issue of having to get a new build because of the CPU & mobo having compatibility issues with future CPUs. If only we could just buy a new CPU and fit it with our current builds and it be that simple. We wouldn’t have to come to making a totally new build. I’ll keep thinking what CPU to go with that is future proof but I just feel like the 9900k will be like the 6700k, 3960X, 2600K where after 2-3 years it will be the bottleneck and annoying holding me back from a quick further upgrade.
 

volkgren

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1080p gaming is more demanding on the CPU than 4K gaming because the GPU reaches higher frame rates.

My opinion, the gaming advantage of the 9900K isn't as much as the rendering advantage of the 9940X. As you said, 4K gaming will have even less of a difference than 1080p gaming.

I don't know if the 9900K will be like the 6700K, etc. I think we just stepped on to the cusp of 8-core gaming. But like you say, what will it be in 2-3 years? I think the 9900K will be okay, but I would worry about the 9700K because it doesn't have hyper-threading.
 

logainofhades

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The higher core count threadrippers really do shine in certain multitasking workloads, without a doubt. I haven't seen any 4k benchmarks, for them, though. Generally 4k GPU matters more. Threadripper actually games better, than I initially thought, looking at some info out there, @1080p.

https://www.techspot.com/review/1678-amd-ryzen-threadripper-2990wx-2950x/page5.html
https://www.pcworld.com/article/3305360/components-processors/how-the-32-core-ryzen-threadripper-is-suddenly-a-lot-better-at-gaming.html
 
The fact of the matter is, there will be no difference between the i9 9900k and the i9 9940x in gaming at 4k resolution. No difference what so ever due being graphics card limited at that resolution. My choice would be the i9 9940x, as you'll get more overall longevity out of the system (In years) with your content creation tasks and gaming performance as games continue to optimize for multi-core performance. Either way you're going to spend a lot of money going Intel, so you might as well invest logically and for your use case the clear winner is the i9 9940x because it suites your needs across the board, in both single and multi-core performance.
 

volkgren

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That is interesting the TR 2950X beating the 2700X in gaming. I'm just now seeing it actually has a 4.4GHz boost while the 2700X has 4.3Ghz. Impressive. As that one article stated, if you are rendering 90% of the time then Threadripper is a good choice. But if gaming 90% of the time then there are better options, particularly with Intel if you ask me since they do typically perform faster in gaming.

*Edit: Just to restate my earlier opinion; I also agree that there will be little to no difference at 4K between the 9900K an 9940X, making the 9940X a better choice for your use.
 

MozzaGamer

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Thanks for your responses guys. Now I have the 9940x as my prefered CPU choice. Do you guys think AMDs flagship CPU the 2990WX is better in gaming and as a workstation than the 9940X ? I’m only asking this because the 9940X does cost a lot but the 2990WX costs around the same price. If the 9940X is better for gaming but not better as a workstation then I’ll most likely choose the 9940X because I’m sure the 9940X can render 4K videos and hour long videos extremely fast.

Once I get feedback for my question above I’ll probably post my build one last time so anyone can confirm if I should go with ordering it. The 4k monitor I will order from another website and I was debating whether to order another sound bar for my new build but I may just use my current soundbar for my new rig and my current rig just use onboard audio whenever needed. As I will have enough cables all over the table and what not from my current rig. And I wont use my current rig for gaming or movies so I don’t really need another soundbar and subwoofer.

Got another question. Do I need a sound card to plug the razer leviathan soundbar into? Or can I just plug the soundbar optical cable into the onboard motherboard instead? Does it actually make a difference whether you get a soundcard or not? Just curious because if a soundcard is not needed then I can get an internal capture card instead.
 
At 4k resolution you won't notice a difference between processors from R7/i7 and up in gaming. For workstation tasks, intel's superior single core performance and architecture will beat out AMD in many content creation in many tests. However the gap is closing rapidly as the 3rd generation Ryzen is right around the corner. If you can afford the 9940 and you aren't budget restricted, i'd choose that processor for your use case.
 

volkgren

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OP is concerned with render time which benefits from more cores/threads. The TR 2990WX would squash the i9-9940X in render time due to it having over twice the amount of cores. But the 9940X is still a great rendering chip and will perform slightly better than the 2990WX in gaming.

Synthetic low-key reference (UserBenchmark.com)shows around 20% faster single-threaded performance from the 9940X, and 72% faster multi-threaded performance from the 2990WX.

I think the thing for you to do is sift through all the benchmarks you can find from the professional reviewers (Gamer's Nexus, Paul's Hardware, Linus TT, Hardware Unboxed, Digital Foundry, etc. etc. etc.) and maybe even some YouTube comparisons so you can see for yourself the difference in the two or whichever CPUs you want to buy. It's too much money to spend to not know exactly for yourself.
 

MozzaGamer

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One question I totally forgot to ask at the beginning was what’s the best cooling solution? I’ve never had a water/liquid cooled PC before. I’ve only ever had air cooled rigs. I was wondering is liquid cooling superior to air cooling and for gaming/workstation is it best? I heard after 2 years you have to get all pipes/parts and liquid replaced. Is this true, if so is it the best choice out of the two? And is the maintenance nothing to worry about? Thanks again guys!
 

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