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Tough Decision. Better Video Card or Better CPU?

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Old 04-10-09, 04:57 PM Thread Starter   #1
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Tough Decision. Better Video Card or Better CPU?


I have two systems in mind each about the same price. Basically, one has a better video card, the other a better CPU. I'm having a hard time deciding which to go with here. Keep in mind I'll probably have whatever system I get for at least 2-3 years. I am a hardcore 'professional' gamer. I want to set the details to max on the latest games at a resolution of 1920x1200 on my 24" wfp 2407 monitor and get the highest possible frame rate, but I also need it to last me a long time. I would greatly appreciate your expert opinions.

Rig 1 (better video card):

cpu: Core 2 Duo E8400 3.0GHz $165
mobo: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3L P45 $94
ram: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2 800 $42
videocard: GeForce GTX 295 $525
psu: CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX $125
Total: $951

Rig 2 (better CPU)

cpu: Core i7 920 $289
mobo: GIGABYTE GA-EX58-UD3R X58 $200
ram: G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 $90
videocard: Radeon HD 4890 $250
psu: PC Power & Cooling S61EPS 610W $105
total: $934

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mb: DFI Lanparty UT nf4 Ultra-D
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video: Sapphire X1900XT 512MB @ 630/775
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Old 04-10-09, 05:07 PM   #2
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I put my vote in for rig #2. I love my i7 and that 4890 is no slouch at all. BUT, take the extra $20-30 and get the tx750 psu in case crossfire is in your future.

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Old 04-10-09, 05:15 PM   #3
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GTX295 is only worth it if you plan to fold.... other wise i would go rig 2....

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Old 04-10-09, 05:24 PM Thread Starter   #4
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That's true. I just realized with a GTX 295 you need as fast a CPU as possible so it isn't bottlenecked. It makes no sense to pair a GTX 295 with a slower processor. Am I right?

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cooling: Laing D5; Maze 4; DD TDX; BIX 2; Panaflo L1a @ 34C/42C
mb: DFI Lanparty UT nf4 Ultra-D
memory: OCZ Gold Edition 2x1GB DDR 500 @ 254Mhz 3-4-3-8
video: Sapphire X1900XT 512MB @ 630/775
hard drive: 2x36GB WD Raptor (RAID 0)
psu: OCZ PowerStream 520W
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Old 04-10-09, 05:27 PM   #5
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I also say go with Rig #2. That X58 motherboard and DDR3-1600 memory is much more futureproof. You will probably not need to upgrade for processor for a long time (if ever, heh) with Core i7.

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Old 04-10-09, 05:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac View Post
That's true. I just realized with a GTX 295 you need as fast a CPU as possible so it isn't bottlenecked. It makes no sense to pair a GTX 295 with a slower processor. Am I right?
if you got the C2D oc'd high enough it wouldnt matter. C2Q/C2D's can match i7's in single card setups. i7 pulls away when you start doing SLI setups, even though that is techincally SLI'd gpu's. the number for the GTX295 in either kind of setup are not that much apart. mainly saying i7 cause its going to have more upgradablility then LGA775 setup.

another thing to consider is that depending on the res/settings you play at. the 4890 will be more then enough at half the cost.

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Old 04-10-09, 06:42 PM   #7
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definately rig 2 imo, 1366 socket and DDR3 and an i7, that way if you ever upgrade again in the future it will most likely only be the GPU. Although as people above me have stated the 4890 is a strong card so even then I don't think you'll be needing any upgrades for awhile.

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Old 04-10-09, 06:47 PM   #8
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I would definitely pick rig 2.

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Old 04-10-09, 08:03 PM Thread Starter   #9
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Thanks everyone. Going with Rig 2.

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cooling: Laing D5; Maze 4; DD TDX; BIX 2; Panaflo L1a @ 34C/42C
mb: DFI Lanparty UT nf4 Ultra-D
memory: OCZ Gold Edition 2x1GB DDR 500 @ 254Mhz 3-4-3-8
video: Sapphire X1900XT 512MB @ 630/775
hard drive: 2x36GB WD Raptor (RAID 0)
psu: OCZ PowerStream 520W
case: LianLi v1000b-w
Monitor: Dell 2407 WFP
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Old 04-10-09, 08:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac View Post
Thanks everyone. Going with Rig 2.
Get the corsair 750 to go with it!!!!!

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Ram: Dominator 3x1gb DDR3 1600 @1656mhz
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mobo: Gigibyte EX58-UD3R F6
Case: Beastly huge HAF 932
PSU: Corsair TX750w
HDD: 80g WD and a 500g Barracuda
Game Viewing Portal: HG281D @ 1920x1200 & HG216D


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Old 04-10-09, 09:37 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac View Post
I have two systems in mind each about the same price. Basically, one has a better video card, the other a better CPU. I'm having a hard time deciding which to go with here. Keep in mind I'll probably have whatever system I get for at least 2-3 years. I am a hardcore 'professional' gamer. I want to set the details to max on the latest games at a resolution of 1920x1200 on my 24" wfp 2407 monitor and get the highest possible frame rate, but I also need it to last me a long time. I would greatly appreciate your expert opinions.

Rig 1 (better video card):

cpu: Core 2 Duo E8400 3.0GHz $165
mobo: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3L P45 $94
ram: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2 800 $42
videocard: GeForce GTX 295 $525
psu: CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX $125
Total: $951

Rig 2 (better CPU)

cpu: Core i7 920 $289
mobo: GIGABYTE GA-EX58-UD3R X58 $200
ram: G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 $90
videocard: Radeon HD 4890 $250
psu: PC Power & Cooling S61EPS 610W $105
total: $934
Always go for the better CPU first.

Better CPU-->Better PSU--->THEN Better Video Card.

That's like the Divine Order.

You should lose your immortal soul if you don't follow that order.

Because you might not even get all you could out of a future video card if you got a weak CPU.

I started out with an E6400, then switched to P45 and an E8400, then picked up a 750TX, now I have a 260GTX. That's the only way it would've worked.

Now I don't have to worry about a damned thing until i7 boards come down in price. (I was never a high-end gear kinda guy, you'll never see me with a 295gtx and a quad core because, by the time their prices become reasonable, they'll have an equally price mid-range card that can kick its ass. i.e. the 8800GTX vs 260GTX 216.)

First of all there isn't a game on earth right now that would max out a 295gtx unless you're running higher than 1920x1080. So you're better off with a 4890 until the next generation arrives... whenever THAT's going to be...

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Old 04-10-09, 09:38 PM   #12
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One problem with rig 2: The 4890 is no way no how worth $100 more than a 1GB 4870. (OK, $75 more. Still not even close in value.)

edit: Oh yeah, buy.com seems to be the best place to get Corsair PSUs. TX750W is $90 after rebate there, http://www.buy.com/prod/corsair-750w...206178325.html

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Old 04-10-09, 09:44 PM Thread Starter   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henzo View Post
Get the corsair 750 to go with it!!!!!
Yeah I'll chip in the extra 20 dollars and go with the Corsair 750TX.

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cpu: A64 3700+ San Diego 2.2Ghz @ 254x11=2794Mhz; 1.55v
cooling: Laing D5; Maze 4; DD TDX; BIX 2; Panaflo L1a @ 34C/42C
mb: DFI Lanparty UT nf4 Ultra-D
memory: OCZ Gold Edition 2x1GB DDR 500 @ 254Mhz 3-4-3-8
video: Sapphire X1900XT 512MB @ 630/775
hard drive: 2x36GB WD Raptor (RAID 0)
psu: OCZ PowerStream 520W
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Monitor: Dell 2407 WFP
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Old 04-10-09, 11:37 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac View Post
Yeah I'll chip in the extra 20 dollars and go with the Corsair 750TX.
Yeah the hell with a B.S. 610 watt PPC&C piece of crap...

The peace of mind that comes with the Corsair is PRICELESS.

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Old 04-11-09, 12:53 AM   #15
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not to mention the corsair psu's look pretty stylish too

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Old 04-11-09, 01:06 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rainless View Post
Yeah the hell with a B.S. 610 watt PPC&C piece of crap...

The peace of mind that comes with the Corsair is PRICELESS.
*throws pie in face, then runs*
says you old man!!! :P

just messing, never had a problem with my older PCP 510DLX. from what i read though PC&P has gone down a bit since being bought by ocz. i need to break down and buy two new fans and mod this 510DLX.

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Old 04-11-09, 01:12 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsnowflake View Post
not to mention the corsair psu's look pretty stylish too
Once you open that Corsair box: GAME OVER!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evilsizer View Post
*throws pie in face, then runs*
says you old man!!! :P

just messing, never had a problem with my older PCP 510DLX. from what i read though PC&P has gone down a bit since being bought by ocz. i need to break down and buy two new fans and mod this 510DLX.
I don't know what they WERE... but I know they aren't **** now. Bland, uninspired, and underpowered... not entirely unlike OCZ's power supplies themselves.

I remember everybody was going "Powerstream!" this... and "Gamestream!" that when I first came here. And one by one they were dying off. People started going for the last of the good Power PCs and the more reliable Silverstones, then along came Corsair and that's pretty much all you see today.

GET WIT THE TIMES young buck!

Holla!

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Core 2 Duo E6400 @ 3.8ghz 1.525v
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Corsair 750TX PSU
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Old 04-11-09, 01:20 AM   #18
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why? my powerstream 520 and 510dlx are still kickin!! beats spending another 80-90 for the psu's... what i really want are high EFF 500-600 watt psu's but yea good luck with that...

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Old 04-11-09, 02:26 AM   #19
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Quote:
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why? my powerstream 520 and 510dlx are still kickin!! beats spending another 80-90 for the psu's... what i really want are high EFF 500-600 watt psu's but yea good luck with that...
I'd still be rockin' my Blustorm if it had more SATA power connectors...

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Core 4 Q9550 @4003mhz 1.30v
Core 2 Duo e8400 @ 4.6ghz 1.328v (E0 Stepping)
Core 2 Duo E6400 @ 3.8ghz 1.525v
Asus P5Q Pro 2002m @ 515x9 .63x 1.52
OCZ Fatal1ty Edition 4GB DDR2 5-4-4-18 @ 2.18v w/OCZ XTC Ram Cooler
Corsair 750TX PSU
Sparkle 260 GTX (65nm, 216) 696c 1512s 999mem
BLOCK: Swiftech Apogee GTZ RAD: BIXII REZ: MCRES-Micro rev2 PUMP: Pondmaster 750 FAN: 2 HS Yates CONTROLLER: Modified Evercool WC-202
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Old 04-11-09, 03:31 AM   #20
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GTX295 is only worth it if you plan to fold.... other wise i would go rig 2....
Why do you say that? Is the GTX295 bad in games?

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