Question Should I just upgrade my CPU?

Oct 11, 2019
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So I'm trying to keep a 8-year-old build going to keep up with new games and system requirements. Here are my existing specs:
- I5-2500K
-Asus P8P67 PRO
-GTX 1080
-16 GB Ram
-Corsair H100

My system keeps up with most games but now that Red Dead 2 is coming to PC, I think I need to start addressing my CPU bottleneck. I bought the GTX1080 last year when my 580 died and I'm trying to decide if it's worth it to upgrade to a newer CPU on the 1155 socket or if I'm just spinning my wheels and need to upgrade the CPU, mobo and ram with a newer socket. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
 

LORDPrometheus

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Oct 3, 2014
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Ok well you are bottlenecked to the moon and back by your CPU so i would highly recommend changes. Depending on your price point you have several options for an upgrade however all of them will be a new socket so new motherboard and RAM since you should not stick with a DDR3 platform due to age.

Anything I7 6700k and above will work and looking at the Ryzen 3700x would be a fantastic choice as well. If you would like a build option let me know.
 
Oct 11, 2019
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Thank you for the quick response. I think deep down I know I need to overhaul most of the system and upgrade to a newer socket. I'd love to look at a few options. I've never run an AMD processor before as I've always been an intel guy but I'm open to suggestions.

Thank you!
 
Oct 11, 2019
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So far, I'm looking at a Ryzen 3600, MSI Tomahawk and some Patriot 16GB DDR$-3733. With a new cooler, I can be out the door under $500. Is there anything you would tweak? Considering how long I've gone with my 2500K, is it reasonable to expect I can get another 5-6 years out of this build?
 

LORDPrometheus

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Oct 3, 2014
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Equally fine. You should look for DDR4 8gb modules between 3000 and 3400MHZ and try and find decent timings. In my experience the most reliable brands are Corsair and G.Skill but Crucial XPG and Kingston/HyperX are also usually fine. I would avoid things like ADATA though
 
Your current pc meets the minimum requirements for RED Dead 2.
The recommended requirements are for i7-4770K which is not all that strong.
Your current 2500K has 4 threads and a passmark rating of 6487 and a single thread rating of 1894.
You could just play red dead2 and see how you do.
If you can overclock, you are looking at some 25% more cpu capability.
The recommended 4770k has 8 threads and a rating of 10,007/2251.
Not that I would recommend one as an upgrade.
On the intel side, a Z390 motherboard and a i5-9600K with 6 threads would be 13488/2680.
A i7-9700K has 8 threads and would be, in my opinion the best pure gaming processor when overclocked near 5.0 The intel performance maximizer utility makes overclocking simple:
https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/intel-cpu-auto-overclock-performance-maximizer,6179.html
The problem with ryzen seems to be that they do not seem to be able to reach advertised turbo frequencies or overclock well on all cores.
Few games really make good use of more than 4 threads.
 
The problem with ryzen seems to be that they do not seem to be able to reach advertised turbo frequencies or overclock well on all cores.
Given the small margins by which they fall short, is this really a problem? Is anyone going to notice, say, a 50Mhz, or even 100Mhz shortfall at the peak turbo frequencies, in actual gaming?

Few games really make good use of more than 4 threads.
Is this still accurate with regard to the most recent games?
 
Here is one article on ryzen and boost speeds:
https://www.extremetech.com/computing/297762-survey-many-amd-ryzen-3000-cpus-dont-hit-full-boost-clock
No doubt that in time things will sort out unless there is an underlying design limitation.

As to the assertion about 4 threads, the first thing to note is that word EFFECTIVE.
task manager will distribute cpu activity across all available threads making it look like many threads are needed.
The question is if adding incrementally more threads does that have an impact on gaming fps?
Here is an older study which does seem to include many games that are still frequently played:
Here is another:

Game developers want the max number of potential buyers for their games.
They will not willingly develop games that require many threads to run and limit their market.
That is not to say that there are no exceptions.
Anecdotally, multiplayer games with many participants seem to do better with many threads.
Benchmarking such games is not done because of the difficulty in keeping accurate controls.
 
Current triple A titles definitely use more than 4 threads and game developers also optimize games to accommodate lower end systems (lower core/thread count processors), which is why gamers are able to configure graphical settings for optimal performance based on said hardware. I'm confident there's no game optimized for strictly high core count processors that would limit their market in such a way which is why graphical settings can be adjusted.
However I agree with Geofelt that it would be a good idea to test the current system as it does meet hardware system requirements. If David determines he doesn't like the performance we'll be waiting to assist with any necessary upgrades or builds.
 
Is this still accurate with regard to the most recent games?
Even back in the "all you need for gaming is a quadcore" days the hyperthreaded i7s were pulling ahead of the non HT i5s in many games despite being clocked the same.
https://www.anandtech.com/show/4083/the-sandy-bridge-review-intel-core-i7-2600k-i5-2500k-core-i3-2100-tested/20
Nowadays you'll have a hard time finding a power demanding game that can't utilize at least 6 threads, even if the game only uses 4 threads, you still have the load from background applications which extra cores could take.
The biggest problem of quadcores wasn't even necessarily bad performance but rather the steep framedrops when something cpu intensive like an explosion happens suddenly.
 
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Oct 11, 2019
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Thank you for all the feedback guys. I pulled the trigger on the Ryzen 5 3600, 16gb of memory and an Asus ROG Strix B450-F motherboard. The memory doesn't have the best latency but should be a huge improvement over what I'm running now.
 
Even back in the "all you need for gaming is a quadcore" days the hyperthreaded i7s were pulling ahead of the non HT i5s in many games despite being clocked the same.
https://www.anandtech.com/show/4083/the-sandy-bridge-review-intel-core-i7-2600k-i5-2500k-core-i3-2100-tested/20
Nowadays you'll have a hard time finding a power demanding game that can't utilize at least 6 threads, even if the game only uses 4 threads, you still have the load from background applications which extra cores could take.
The biggest problem of quadcores wasn't even necessarily bad performance but rather the steep framedrops when something cpu intensive like an explosion happens suddenly.
I read the anandtech link you posted.
I think it actually supports my point.
It seems to me that the 2600K and 2500K were performing essentially the same and any differences were accounted for by the higher clock rate of the 2600K.
 
Oct 11, 2019
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I've been doing a bit more research and I'm concerned the ASUS ROG Strix B-450F I bought won't have the updated BIOS I need for the newer processor. If that's the case, how to I update the BIOS if the PC won't boot?
 

Solidjake

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Sep 6, 2019
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I've been doing a bit more research and I'm concerned the ASUS ROG Strix B-450F I bought won't have the updated BIOS I need for the newer processor. If that's the case, how to I update the BIOS if the PC won't boot?
You will have no problems. You can update the BIOS with a USB drive without an OS/bootable drive. Just download the latest BIOS on your current PC or laptop to have it ready. ASUS website shows the 3600 is compatible.

https://www.asus.com/us/support/FAQ/1012815

https://www.asus.com/us/Motherboards/ROG-STRIX-B450-F-GAMING/HelpDesk_CPU/
 
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