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Old April 23, 2011, 04:59 PM
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Default 6950 or a new CPU?

I need some upgrade advice. First off i'm currently running:

- Win 7 64bit
- Gigabyte GA-MA790X-UD4P Motherboard
- Athlon 64 X2 5000+ BE
- 4 gb DDr2-800 ram
- and a EVGA Nvidia 8800 GTS
- 23" Samsung monitor 1920x1080 native resolution

Where am I going to get a better bang for the buck, a CPU or video card upgrade? I was looking at a 6950 1gb (vendor undetermined), or something in the $200-$250 range. Essentially what i'm looking for is more eye candy that what i'm currently seeing.

In past i've always bought Nvidia but the new MB I have is a crossfire board. I'd like to leave the possibility of buying a second Radeon card.


Looking forward to your input

Last edited by Lefty101; April 23, 2011 at 05:06 PM. Reason: incomplete
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Old April 23, 2011, 05:25 PM
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well,both. get a phenom II and a 6950...or just the gpu.
your mobo is a solid one, if it was an older one id suggest upg the lot
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Old April 23, 2011, 09:51 PM
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If your playing games you wont see that much improvement it would be bottlenecked by the 8800gts.
The video card upgrade would be more noticable.
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Old April 23, 2011, 11:21 PM
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If you were to upgrade either one, they will bottleneck each other. Upgrade both and you would not have any bottlenecks. I suggest getting a cheaper GPU than the HD6950 to get a better CPU as well.
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Old April 23, 2011, 11:26 PM
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What's the memory on that 8800GTS? There was 3 models...320MB, 640MB and 512MB. All of varying performance.

However either way, it probably needs upgrading.

I'd suggest getting a Phenom II X2 555 and a GTX460 (be it 768MB or 1GB, whatever fits your budget).
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Old April 24, 2011, 12:28 AM
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AMD Athlon

Sapphire Radeon HD 6790 1GB GDDR5 PCI-E w/ Dual DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort at Memory Express Computers

if you look around you can probably get the 640 under $100 somewhere
and the 6790 i was going to buy myself yesterday till i spotted a pretty good deal on kijiji.
If you are willing to go used there are some good deals to be had in the BST section here.
might make saving for the big upgrade down the road a little easier

hehe you know you got your eye on one of them am3 boards or are planning a bulldozer build
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Old April 24, 2011, 01:22 AM
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I'm going to wager your card is already bottlenecked by the CPU. When I had an E6450 and 8800GTS 640mb, I had to clock the CPU to around 3.4GHz for it not to be a bottleneck, and the C2D architecture is faster than the A64 X2 architecture. Although an HD6950 would probably show more improvement in most games compared to a CPU upgrade, I don't think it would be worth the money without a new CPU as well. You'd be basically flushing cash down the toilet by not getting the most out of the card possible.

I'd say pick up the card plus a Phenom II X2 555 which can be had for around $80 on sale. You even have a solid chance of unlocking it to a quad-core, if your board supports that feature. If you can't stretch your budget that far, go with the X2 555 and a HD 5850/5870/6850/6870.
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Old April 24, 2011, 08:57 AM
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IMHO I would buy a 955BE Buy AMD [HDZ955FBGMBOX] AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Quad Core Processor 3.2GHZ AM3 8MB Cache 125W Retail Box and then get a 560ti NCIX.com - Buy Zotac GeForce GTX 560 Ti 822MHZ 1GB GDDR5 Dual DVI Mini-HDMI DisplayPort DX11 PCI-E Video Card - Zotac - ZT-50301-10M - in Canada or similar


IMHO getting a better cpu alone is not going to do and the same can be said vice versa if you just bought a new GPU. I guess it means that your current cpu/gpu config is well balanced as far as old tech goes and if you make an upgrade both really need to be done IMHO.

Last edited by Phill; April 24, 2011 at 09:02 AM.
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Old April 24, 2011, 09:24 AM
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Thanks for the feedback. Sounds like i'm getting both components . I do have more questions though:

Will I need to re-install Win 7 if I install a new CPU? If a reinstall is required is there possibly a 'repair' option instead of a full reinstall?

You guys spoke of bottlenecks that either the CPU or the GPU could create, just for curiosity sakes is there a program that would show the which components was working at max capacity?

Also CPU wise 2 people mentioned the 955BE is this a decent midrange CPU? How is the 1090T is comparision to the 955BE performance wise?

Thanks again
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Old April 24, 2011, 09:48 AM
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No need to reinstall window w/ new cpu.

tbh... 955BE is good enough for a long while.

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