What Xeon CPU and motherboard combo is best for gaming?

Wade99

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I'm looking to spend £250 on the motherboard and Xeon processor, this is just one idea for a build and I'm looking for suggestions :) thanks in advance
 

Karadjgne

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Xeon 1230v2 Ivy Bridge on an lga1155 mobo would probably be the cheapest value for $. While newer Xeons are slightly better they also cost more, but don't really perform much better. Best bet would be ebay.uk or something similar.

On ebay.uk now, you can get the 1230v2 for @£100ish, and a decent (don't you dare think of the HP boards, stick with asus/Gigabyte/msi aftermarket boards) lga1155 will run £70ish. That'll leave room for plenty of ram.
 

Wade99

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Thanks I'll look into that :) do you have any experience with the CPU and what I could expect? Also what would be the problem with a generic HP board?
 

bambiboom

Dignified

Wade99,

The principal, desirable characteristic of a processor for gaming is the single-thread performance. That factor is dependent on the clock speed, which is why there are certain processors- Intel marks them with a "K" that can be overclocked to higher rates. Xeons, however, are locked for reasons of stability /reliability in content creation applications and will be more expensive for a lower clock speed that can't be altered. For example, the consumer CPU with the highest average Passmark Single Thread Mark is the Intel i7-7700K 4-core @ 4.2/4.5GHz with a score of 2586 and cost of £328.99 while the highest STM for a Xeon is 2440 using a E3-1275 v6 4-core @ 3.8/4.2GHz at £327.49.

The Passmark "CPU Mega Page " is very useful to find processors according to performance. Go to http://www.cpubenchmark.net/CPU_mega_page.html and click on "Single Thread Mark" to put all processors into order of performance. Then try: "Single Thread Value" to have a sense of the best choices as regards cost/performance .

Categorical Options:

Best Cost Performance Xeon: Intel Xeon E3-1270 V2 Ivy Bridge 3.5GHz 3.9GHz Turbo 4 x 256KB Processor CPU > £140.00 + the LGA1150 Xeon E3 motherboard having the highest rated chipset according to the list above, foro example: ASRock Z77 Extreme4, LGA 1155/Sockel H2, Intel (90-MXGKX0-A0UAYZ) Motherboard > EUR 98.00 Approximately £85.27

The Xeon E3-1270 v2 has a Passmark CPU rating of 9469 and STM of 2071

To find a list of Xeon E3 v2 compatible motherboards, go to Partpicker UK > Start a system build > Choose CPU "Xeon E3-1270 v2" > Select Motherboard > Search motherboards by chipset designation. The performance of LGA1150 motherboards in descending order is :

Z97 chipset
Z87 chipset
H97 chipset
H87 chipset
H81 chipset
Q87 chipset
B85 chipset

Best Cost /Performance: Unless there is compelling reason to use a Xeon and new components, consider buying a used i7-4790 or i7-4790K 4-core @ 4.0/4.4GHz in the £150 range and a new or used LGA1150 motherboard at £100.

The i7-4790K has an average Passmark CPU rating of 11198 and STM of 2530- the second highest.

Best Cost /Performance New: Within the budget of £250, the highest performing new CPU /motherboard combination might be the i3 7320 2-core/4 thread @ 4.1GHz for £150 plus: Gigabyte Intel Z170 Gaming K3 DDR4 ATX Motherboard £98.48

My choice for the best gaming performance within the budget is by far the i7-4790K option.

Cheers,

BambiBoom

HP z620_2 (2017) > Xeon E5-1680 v2 (8-core@ 4.1GHz) / 64GB DDR3-1866 ECC Reg / Quadro P2000 5GB / HP Z Turbo Drive M.2 256GB + Intel 730 480GB + Seagate Constellation ES.3 1TB / ASUS Essence STX PCIe sound card / 825W PSU / Windows 7 Prof.’l 64-bit > 2X Dell Ultrasharp U2715H (2560 X 1440) / Logitech z2300 2.1 Sound

[Passmark Rating = 6166 / CPU rating = 16934 / 2D = 820 / 3D= 8849 / Mem = 2991 / Disk = 13794] 4.24.17 Single Thread Mark = 2252
 

Wade99

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Thanks for the help man :) much appreciated
 

Karadjgne

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Herald
Reason to stay away from pre-built type motherboards is simple. It's not so much the overall performance of the board, with a locked clock cpu like the Xeons, all the boards will perform roughly the same. It's the fact that pre-built boards are proprietary. With HP, Dell, Compaq etc what you'll run into is things like proprietary power connections for the front panel, even the EPS connection and/or 20+4 pin connection can be proprietary, requiring the use of adapters to go from 6pin to 4+4pin or 20+4 to 14pin etc. You'll also find serious restrictions in the bios, so while any aftermarket lga1155 will handle a Xeon, the pre-built often only support a certain range of cpus, notably the K and Xeons will not be supported. So an i5-3570 would be fine, but the i7-3770K would get you a blank screen an a ton of beeps. Aftermarket is designed to be universal, so anyone can buy it/use it. HP only cares to do enough to satisfy its own needs.

When I checked ebay.uk, it was just a quickie search and the best prices and most popular e3 Xeon v2 was the 1230, but a later search did find the 1270 as Bambi suggested. It was a good catch.
If you must have a Xeon, lga1155 for your budget is the way to go, but as said above, a Haswell i7 would be better.

You've got some shopping to do :D

Good luck.
 

Wade99

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I've been shopping around for weeks doing research, its a lot of fun in my opinion especially for price to performance :D Ive also noticed people having very good reviews about the I7 2600k chip, I can purchase this in the UK for £70-80. I'm wondering if this would be a more viable options as the motherboards are readily available and fairly cheap and I could OC to 4+ghz?

 

Karadjgne

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The i7-2600k is Sandy-Bridge lga1155 and to get best performance would need a Z77 lga1155 mobo, same as the Xeon v2's. So yes, you'd get better performance, especially at OC levels by comparison between the slower Xeon and faster i7. However, if sticking with older lga1155, I'd opt for the i7-3770K Ivy Bridge over the i7-2600k Sandy-Bridge. But, the 3770k will run £150-170 and a decent (important for OC levels) z77 will run £150+ which kinda blows the budget.

And then there's batches. Some batches do better than others, and it's hard to argue results. I got the top rated batch and can hit 4.9GHz with little effort at 1.32v on my 3770k.

If time isn't an imperative, I built almost the entire pc in my profile from ebay parts, total cost just under $600 little over 3 years ago (£460), so shopping vrs time invested can get you a great deal, and stay in budget, if you are willing to put the time into it.
 

Wade99

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Maybe I could get the i7 2600K now and then upgrade in the future cause 4 cores 8 threads should be fine for the immediate future and its cheap as hell :D
 

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