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Message boards : Number crunching : Should I get a new pc or a 2nd gpu?

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Profile Logan Carr
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Message 45153 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 2:32:38 UTC

Hello all,

I want your input on what I should buy next.

So right now I have 2 computer's and one I'm using with an Nvidia GTX 960 running windows XP. I have one other PC that has a gtx 460 gpu, but rather not use my gtx 460 anymore as it is outdated.

The thing I'm stuck on is should I get a new PC from 2012 for my gtx 960? New for me but from 2012 so I can use windows XP (3rd gen intel processors). It would have a 3.0 pci-e x16 slot and not a 1st gen like my current ones have. Or should I get another GPU for my PC that's not in use? Both have upgraded power supplies that I have bought but they are 1st gen pci-e x16 slots (both pc's are from (2006-2008)

Any more info about the PC's I'll gladly provide. Thanks.



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Message 45155 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 9:12:35 UTC
Last modified: 4 Nov 2016 | 9:36:25 UTC

Hi Logan,

to throw in my two cents... I would recommend getting the PC from 2012 as from your below explanation it is a somewhat modern 1155 board for 3.Gen iCore (=Ivy Bridge CPU) and PCIe3.0 support. And you may want to retire your 10 year old Pentium and Core2 Systems in return.

Intel didn't really improve the speed of their CPUs (aside from the integrated iGPUs) a lot in the last couple of years because of lacking competition. If I may say that, they could have stopped their chip development with Haswell (1150 socket). Their last revolution in my opinion was the 2.Gen Sandy Bridge which is widely and rightly in use as the CPUs (i7-2600, i5-2500K) are still very capable. Ivy Bridge is basically a shrink (1155 socket as well) having more power efficiency and is therefore an acceptable choice (as a second hand unit) for the next 2-3 years despite the age. You may skip Skylake and Kaby Lake (1151) but thereafter I would switch to Cannonlake and let your 1.Gen iCore Systems retire.

The 1155 Ivy Bridge platform will be sufficent to support even mid to high end Maxwell or Pascal GPUs. So in case you decide to sell your old machines (and the old GTX460) and buy a GTX1060 it will work well with Ivy Bridge in my opinion. For now, you could run two of your GTX960 per PCIe3.0x16 (x8 electrical) slots in the Ivy Bridge system.

In regard to the CPU, I would recommend a good mid class i5 to support your GPU. Nothing very fancy (unless you want to run a lot of CPU tasks as well). My suggestion is a i5-3450 or 3470.
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Message 45157 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 9:59:47 UTC

One more thought-provoking Impulse.

Your GTX960 have a current value of maybe 120-130€ per unit, depending on the age. If you sell them both, you could buy a new GTX 1060 6G for the money. Why is that an advantage?

First of all, it is a major advantage if you want to play games now and again, aside from crunching. Even if you operate both 960ies by SLI, the 1060 will surpass them because of the much larger 6G memory.

In regard to crunching, two GTX960 yield 2x 2400 GFLOPs(SP) whereas the GTX1060 6G yields 4300GFLOPs. Which means the 1060 is slightly slower ... but wait. The power consumption drops from 2x 100W to 120W! Which means you could choose a highly overclocked GTX1060 to draw near the 2x GTX960 performance again, but still reduce the energy cost.

From that view, you will even save money by the upgrade.

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Message 45159 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 10:53:45 UTC - in response to Message 45157.

Hello,

Thank you for your input. I do understand what you mean about the gtx 1060, however I'm unsure about getting that because windows XP does not support it. I am also unable to sell any of my computers or gpu's for a lot of personal reasons (wish i could sell them).

I only have 1 gtx 960 right now by the way. I don't know if I worded that wrong or if you meant for me to buy another one.

- Logan

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Message 45163 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 11:16:02 UTC - in response to Message 45159.
Last modified: 4 Nov 2016 | 11:18:47 UTC

Hello,

Thank you for your input. I do understand what you mean about the gtx 1060, however I'm unsure about getting that because windows XP does not support it. I am also unable to sell any of my computers or gpu's for a lot of personal reasons (wish i could sell them).

I only have 1 gtx 960 right now by the way. I don't know if I worded that wrong or if you meant for me to buy another one.
- Logan



Hi again ... sorry, I just had a look into your computer list and assumed that you own all of them. What is the specification of the PC which hosts the GTX960?
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Message 45172 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 14:57:31 UTC - in response to Message 45163.

Hmm, sorry I didn't specify about that. I have used the same 960 in multiple computers.

The main computer I'm using now is my latest one on my list (the core 2 duo one).
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Message 45173 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 14:59:09 UTC - in response to Message 45172.

It's a dell optiplex 755 desktop
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Message 45174 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 15:12:21 UTC
Last modified: 4 Nov 2016 | 15:12:58 UTC

Here is a comparison of Benchmarks between your E6550 and the cheapest i5 Ivy Bridge (3.Gen) CPU. That picture paints a thousand words. (c)Cpuboss.

Yes, I think an upgrade to 1155/PCIe3.0 is a good idea. Even the cheapest Ivy Bridge Pentium G2010 is much faster than the E6550. Which CPU do you have in mind?


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Message 45179 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 17:23:43 UTC - in response to Message 45174.

I'd prefer a cheaper CPU to save some money but I'm not sure at this point, as the i5 3rd gen looks really good.
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Message 45180 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 18:27:30 UTC - in response to Message 45179.
Last modified: 4 Nov 2016 | 18:32:39 UTC

The G2010 is PCIE2.0 only, as are all the Pentium G2000 Series processors. You would want to future proof better than that.

A 14nm dual core Pentium G4520 (3.6GHz), or the G4500 (3.5GHz) would be a better choice for a basic system with a single GPU; they support PCIE3.0, DDR4 and are reasonable value at around $90. It would be capable of supporting a decent GPU for a good few years.
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Message 45181 - Posted: 4 Nov 2016 | 18:42:36 UTC
Last modified: 4 Nov 2016 | 18:59:42 UTC

I would agree if Logan asked for a general purchase recommendation ... but Logan aimed particularly at a 1155 system in order to run Windows XP on it. Not sure if new Skylake boards will support that old OS fully in regard to drivers.

Yes, the G2010 doesn't support PCIe3 but the i5 CPUs which I recommended below do support it. i5-3330, 3450 or 3470 are available second hand from favorable 60€ (=$65). That is at least what local second hand marketplaces in Austria list it for.
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Message 45185 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 2:14:11 UTC - in response to Message 45181.

I do not think skylake can support windows XP.

Okay so I'm seeing a computer I'm thinking about buying:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/252613758839?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

How does this look for my gtx 960? I already have a power supply I can replace the 265 watt one with.

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Message 45186 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 7:41:18 UTC

Be careful... the Dell Optiplex have special power supplies, special mainboards and special control panels. If you want to exchange the power supply with a regular ATX it won't fit.

So all you could do is contacting the dealer and asking for an alternative model with a better power supply. I would choose 400W or stronger. Also keep in mind that those Dell supplies usually don't provide 6pin GPU (and sometimes not even Molex) connectors. But you need that for your GTX960 by all means.

Also you are very limited in regard to Windows drivers. I did not find XP drivers on the Dell website for this old model yet.

Well, those all-in-one offers look good at a first view... but can cause a lot of problems if you want to upgrade them.

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Message 45187 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 7:52:03 UTC

If I may ask the question ... why do you want to run WinXP by all means? It is no longer supported by Microsoft, no longer patched and therefore a bit of a safety risk.
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Message 45190 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 9:46:17 UTC - in response to Message 45187.
Last modified: 5 Nov 2016 | 9:47:54 UTC

You're right about Skylake, the chipset drivers don't work for XP, at least not without a workaround, but that doesn't make old kit the right path forward.
As pointed out, XP is the anchor in this discussion and makes no sense; it's vulnerable security ways, won't work with lots of newish peripheral components (printers, external drives) and might not work with some internal kit, it isn't Pascal capable so limits you to using yesteryear hardware. Sticking with XP would mean you are upgrading a bit but preventing further upgrades. You just can't future proof a system running XP.
If you want a new-ish system just for crunching/web browsing, Ubuntu x64 16.04 LTS is the better solution; it's not impacted by the W7+ (Vista also not supported by Cuda 8) WDDM overhead, it's free, it's more secure, it's Pascal capable and will likely be upgradable/re-installable to make Volta usable in a couple of years time. Tying yourself down to a defunct OS isn't the answer and will only result in a flawed solution. Also, selling your old kit to help fund your new kit is the correct route. What's the point in keeping the 460, if it's yours? Also, if you're keeping the old XP system, why would your new system need to be XP too?

BTW. The only Pascal performance upgrade to the 960 is a 1060-3GB (or higher), which is a big jump in performance, but the Pascal's are still quite expensive IMO. The 1050Ti would only roughly match the 960, so it's not really an upgrade in terms of performance, just newer technology & better performance/Watt.
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Message 45196 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 11:53:40 UTC
Last modified: 5 Nov 2016 | 12:05:51 UTC

Yes, the XP is the crux of the matter. Seems that both skgiven and I have reservations in regard to keeping the old operating system. The difference in opinion is maybe that I recommend staying with Windows as the familiarization with Linux takes a while and Linux is not everyones cup of tea.

If you have intended to take your old harddisk out of your old PC, plug into the Dell and run it right away, that was a misbelief as I already wrote. The data transfer will require some more effort I am afraid. With that said, you could just as well move on to a modern operating system and set-up entirely new.

So if you can reconcile with the idea of buying a somewhat new PC I suggest installing Windows 7 which is very similar to XP from the user interface. You will like it. Also the Win7/32 Bit variant will give you the opportunity to run some older software with 16 Bit code embedded, if that is what you need. Otherwise, of course Windows 10/64Bit is the more forward looking OS, if you want to take the chance.

Don't get me wrong, I would anytime prefer Windows 10. But I know from practice that users have their own settled habits and admins therefore have to be mindful of them. You could get a Win7 as a Win10 downgrade so that you can upgrade later anytime when needed.
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Message 45198 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 12:34:28 UTC - in response to Message 45196.
Last modified: 5 Nov 2016 | 12:35:17 UTC

The cuda 8.0 app is x64 only, so if anyone has the x86 version of W7 and wants to use a Pascal, it's not going to happen straight out of the box.
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Message 45200 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 14:18:57 UTC - in response to Message 45198.

The cuda 8.0 app is x64 only, so if anyone has the x86 version of W7 and wants to use a Pascal, it's not going to happen straight out of the box.


No opposition.
But from the below discussion and information I think the initial question

Should I get a new pc or a 2nd gpu?


can be answered. In my opinion Logan needs a new PC first ... as the GTX960 is still a fairly capable mid-class GPU, whereas you get nowhere with the old E6550 processor. Purchasing a Pascal GPU is probably the question after next.

Starting from the XP requirement, the 1155 Ivy Bridge platform is OK in terms of speed. But as mentioned earlier, XP is obsolete, risky and you will not get around upgrading. The Dell you have mentioned is unsuitable anyway as it does not even have 6/8pin GPU power and a much too weak (special) PSU.

From this perspective, keep your GTX960, spend a little more money on the PC and get a new Skylake(1151) + Win7 or Win10 system from a local dealer. For supporting your GTX960, a common Pentium G4400 should do.
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Message 45201 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 14:24:30 UTC - in response to Message 45198.

I basically wanted to put windows XP on my system so there's no WDDM overhead. My plan was to at least have XP until I get a newer 10 series GPU and then I was going to use linux.

In reguards to security updates, I am not concerned about Windows XP whatsoever because I have avast! antivirus installed as well as I only crunch on the computer and rarely go on a web browser.

JoergF,

I'm looking not at the desktop but the minitower of the optiplex 3010. I thought my power supply would fit in that just fine?
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Message 45202 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 14:27:40 UTC - in response to Message 45200.

The cuda 8.0 app is x64 only, so if anyone has the x86 version of W7 and wants to use a Pascal, it's not going to happen straight out of the box.


No opposition.
But from the below discussion and information I think the initial question

Should I get a new pc or a 2nd gpu?


can be answered. In my opinion Logan needs a new PC first ... as the GTX960 is still a fairly capable mid-class GPU, whereas you get nowhere with the old E6550 processor. Purchasing a Pascal GPU is probably the question after next.

Starting from the XP requirement, the 1155 Ivy Bridge platform is OK in terms of speed. But as mentioned earlier, XP is obsolete, risky and you will not get around upgrading. The Dell you have mentioned is unsuitable anyway as it does not even have 6/8pin GPU power and a much too weak (special) PSU.

From this perspective, keep your GTX960, spend a little more money on the PC and get a new Skylake(1151) + Win7 or Win10 system from a local dealer. For supporting your GTX960, a common Pentium G4400 should do.


My power supply has the connector for my GPU.

I guess my only concern is that if A. my power supply can fit in the minitower and B. If there's a 24pin ATX power connector (which I believe there are on all newer models)

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Message 45203 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 15:08:54 UTC - in response to Message 45201.

I basically wanted to put windows XP on my system so there's no WDDM overhead. My plan was to at least have XP until I get a newer 10 series GPU and then I was going to use linux.


Well... in that case ... maybe I took that XP requirement too serious. If you don't have reservations against Linux, why don't you work with it right away as skgiven suggested?

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Message 45204 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 15:52:56 UTC - in response to Message 45202.
Last modified: 5 Nov 2016 | 15:54:16 UTC

I guess my only concern is that if A. my power supply can fit in the minitower and B. If there's a 24pin ATX power connector (which I believe there are on all newer models)


I have a Dell Optiplex 790 MT here (1155 base, i7-2600).

The board has the usual ATX2.2 24pin + 12V-P4 sockets. It is a special PCB and works with the genuine Dell control panel only. No way to figure out the pin layout of the edge connector and no such information available in the web.

But the power supply does not look special to me... it has usual ATX size and no particular connectors for the panel. So your ATX PSU could possibly work in the Optiplex 3010 ... but don't nail me down on that. You may want to call Dell customer service to be on the safe side.
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Message 45206 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 16:03:00 UTC - in response to Message 45203.

I basically wanted to put windows XP on my system so there's no WDDM overhead. My plan was to at least have XP until I get a newer 10 series GPU and then I was going to use linux.


Well... in that case ... maybe I took that XP requirement too serious. If you don't have reservations against Linux, why don't you work with it right away as skgiven suggested?



I don't have enough money for a decent skygiven PC at the moment otherwise I'd gladly buy a really high end one with Linux.
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Message 45207 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 16:03:38 UTC - in response to Message 45204.

I guess my only concern is that if A. my power supply can fit in the minitower and B. If there's a 24pin ATX power connector (which I believe there are on all newer models)


I have a Dell Optiplex 790 MT here (1155 base, i7-2600).

The board has the usual ATX2.2 24pin + 12V-P4 sockets. It is a special PCB and works with the genuine Dell control panel only. No way to figure out the pin layout of the edge connector and no such information available in the web.

But the power supply does not look special to me... it has usual ATX size and no particular connectors for the panel. So your ATX PSU could possibly work in the Optiplex 3010 ... but don't nail me down on that. You may want to call Dell customer service to be on the safe side.


No worries I'll look into it and I'm not going to hold anyone on anything.
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Message 45208 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 16:07:22 UTC - in response to Message 45206.

I don't have enough money for a decent skygiven PC at the moment otherwise I'd gladly buy a really high end one with Linux.


Well... if I may ask that, how much do you want to spend? As there are also other favorable alternatives, e.g. Haswell systems.

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Message 45210 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 16:19:10 UTC - in response to Message 45208.

I have $220 dollars but I'm wondering at this point in time if I should just wait until I can get a better PC compared to mine and the one I was looking at. It seems like that would be the best thing to do.
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Message 45212 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 16:27:12 UTC

Well...

Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future [Niels Bohr]

I wish you all the best!
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Message 45221 - Posted: 5 Nov 2016 | 20:16:51 UTC - in response to Message 45212.

Thanks. I'll have to think it over a couple of days.
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Message 45282 - Posted: 16 Nov 2016 | 17:20:49 UTC

And now for something totally different...

How about a new desktop running windows 10 so you have a decent desktop. Do you do anything on your desktop that needs more than onboard video?

Then, drop linux on your old system and stuff it in the corner.

That's what I did. Then I did it again, and again ;)

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Message 45286 - Posted: 16 Nov 2016 | 22:23:26 UTC - in response to Message 45282.

That's a good idea but I rather not use windows 10 as of now due to the WDDM overhead.

I have also decided that since this Pentium D machine is working, I will use it till sometime next year, then upgrade big time. I will look into upgrading options later on this year in December sometime.

Thanks

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Message 45287 - Posted: 16 Nov 2016 | 22:24:43 UTC - in response to Message 45282.

And now for something totally different...

How about a new desktop running windows 10 so you have a decent desktop. Do you do anything on your desktop that needs more than onboard video?

Then, drop linux on your old system and stuff it in the corner.

That's what I did. Then I did it again, and again ;)


unless you mean linux on the new windows 10 desktop
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Message 45299 - Posted: 17 Nov 2016 | 15:04:21 UTC

Just use linux!

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Message 45423 - Posted: 28 Nov 2016 | 22:16:30 UTC - in response to Message 45299.

Hey all,

I see that the holidays are coming around, so that means some extra money for me.

The thing that I haven't asked though for this project in depth enough is about the pci x16 bandwidth. So right now I still have my old dell PC. I know the pci slot in it is not a 3.0. My main question for this project:

Is it TRULY worth it to buy a new PC for a pci x16 3.0? Does the system performance increase a lot, or only a little for this project and my gtx 960 gpu?

Thanks.


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Message 45424 - Posted: 28 Nov 2016 | 22:17:32 UTC - in response to Message 45423.

I just do not want to buy a complete different system if the performance isn't a huge difference.
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Message 45425 - Posted: 28 Nov 2016 | 23:29:23 UTC
Last modified: 28 Nov 2016 | 23:30:25 UTC

I doubt that PCIe3x16 will give the GTX960 a significant boost... your current PCIe2x16 = PCIe3x8 should be sufficient. But it is rather the Pentium D CPU which gives me headache. This one is very slow.

My suggestion is to save the money and wait until AMD Zen and Intel Kaby Lake arrive on the market and the delivery and pricing situation improved. I would expect it by summer 2017. Before that, you'll pay "early access" prices for Kaby Lake which basically is just yet another refresh.

Later next year you can choose between the new Intel 1151 platform ... or Zen/Summit Ridge/AM4 ... or even make a Haswell/1150 bargain. The latter isn't a bad thing either.
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Message 45426 - Posted: 29 Nov 2016 | 3:13:45 UTC - in response to Message 45425.



Does the CPU really matter if the project runs off of my gpu? I don't understand how a newer one would be much of a difference. How about RAM?

I have just seen this on ebay and it looks pleasing:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/371801736019?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

I would put my spare 600 watt psu in the PC, replacing the 400 watt psu that comes with it.

If CPU really does make a big difference and if ram does too, wouldn't this be a good match? Considering it's skylake and has ddr4?




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Message 45428 - Posted: 29 Nov 2016 | 9:25:40 UTC - in response to Message 45426.

Importance of CPU varies with the project. Broadly speaking, the CPU "feeds" the GPU with data and therefore the load depends on the number of data blocks, the number of interrupts or "messages"/time (unless polling used), kind of memory access and the total block size.

More precisely, the CPU and GPU performance must be well balanced and faster cards require allocation of a full CPU core by the SWAN_SYNC Parameter. In your case, the GPU isnt too fast, but the CPU is slow on the other hand. PCIe2.0x16 is fast enough and should not be the bottleneck.

Having said this ... the D820 Pentium D was released in 2005 when PCIe1 was still on market. You do have a PCIe2 capable board, don't you?

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Message 45429 - Posted: 29 Nov 2016 | 9:44:43 UTC
Last modified: 29 Nov 2016 | 9:53:45 UTC

Besides.. the eBay offer does not include HDD, OS, DVDRW. As a workable system the price increases up to 500$ quickly. So it is not as cheap as it seems.

And please keep in mind that you have to set-up the OS entirely new (or work a fiddle at least), as you cannot just take your HDD out and attach to the new board. The SATA drivers will not match.

By the way, please get 8GB DDR4 for use with a 64Bit OS. And I would spend the extra 36$ for the faster G4500. It's worth it.

PS: dont worry about the PSU, the 400W will suffice even for a i7-6700 & GTX1060...
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Message 45431 - Posted: 29 Nov 2016 | 11:53:37 UTC - in response to Message 45429.

I do not know if my pci slot is a 2.0, I assumed it was. The computer I'm using came out in 2007.

I forgot to mention about the OS. I happen to have a few spare hard drives and I have a dvd drive as well. I plan on using Ubuntu though which can use a usb stick to install.

I also have a windows xp, vista, 7, and 8 disk in my drawer just in case.

My fault for not including the details
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Message 45432 - Posted: 29 Nov 2016 | 11:54:11 UTC - in response to Message 45431.

And I have a few product keys
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Message 45440 - Posted: 29 Nov 2016 | 21:22:15 UTC

As I wrote below, don't jump the gun. There are quite a few new generations of CPUs to come up soon.

I recommend to wait a little until Kaby Lake and Summit Ridge are released (January) and easily available (spring 2017). Then the prices will cool down and you could make a real good bargain on Haswell or Skylake systems.
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Message 45441 - Posted: 29 Nov 2016 | 22:35:30 UTC - in response to Message 45440.

Sounds like a plan, thanks!
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Message 45703 - Posted: 13 Dec 2016 | 18:30:20 UTC - in response to Message 45441.
Last modified: 13 Dec 2016 | 18:31:35 UTC

Apparently AMD's Summit Ridge (Zen) CPU's are due in Q1 (Jan - Mar 2017). The high end CPU's are rumoured to be called Ryzen with the server processors expected to support 64 PCIe lanes at PCIe3 (per socket).
We might see that scaled down to 32 lanes for mid range processors (only expected to support two GPU's), but if they support 64lanes for high end/enthusiast CPU's Intel will have a fight on their hands in the high end gaming/crunching processor market, if not the mid-range and server market too.
It's already known that AMD will support PCIE3, DDR4 and their CPU's cache will be much faster than previous generations - less chance of GPU bottlenecks.
Anyway, when AMD release their Zen processors and when there are enough around (which might not immediately happen) we should see sufficient competition to force better performance products at lower prices. Worth waiting for.
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Message 45707 - Posted: 13 Dec 2016 | 19:12:42 UTC - in response to Message 45703.

Apparently AMD's Summit Ridge (Zen) CPU's are due in Q1 (Jan - Mar 2017). The high end CPU's are rumoured to be called Ryzen with the server processors expected to support 64 PCIe lanes at PCIe3 (per socket).
We might see that scaled down to 32 lanes for mid range processors (only expected to support two GPU's), but if they support 64lanes for high end/enthusiast CPU's Intel will have a fight on their hands in the high end gaming/crunching processor market, if not the mid-range and server market too.
It's already known that AMD will support PCIE3, DDR4 and their CPU's cache will be much faster than previous generations - less chance of GPU bottlenecks.
Anyway, when AMD release their Zen processors and when there are enough around (which might not immediately happen) we should see sufficient competition to force better performance products at lower prices. Worth waiting for.


+1

I definitely think it's worth it to wait for AMD's new offers, if anything intel's prices will lower if you don't want AMD. Personally this time around AMD's offering look very very appealing.

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Message 45734 - Posted: 15 Dec 2016 | 1:32:24 UTC - in response to Message 45703.
Last modified: 15 Dec 2016 | 1:33:01 UTC

Apparently AMD's Summit Ridge (Zen) CPU's are due in Q1 (Jan - Mar 2017). The high end CPU's are rumoured to be called Ryzen with the server processors expected to support 64 PCIe lanes at PCIe3 (per socket).
We might see that scaled down to 32 lanes for mid range processors (only expected to support two GPU's), but if they support 64lanes for high end/enthusiast CPU's Intel will have a fight on their hands in the high end gaming/crunching processor market, if not the mid-range and server market too.
It's already known that AMD will support PCIE3, DDR4 and their CPU's cache will be much faster than previous generations - less chance of GPU bottlenecks.
Anyway, when AMD release their Zen processors and when there are enough around (which might not immediately happen) we should see sufficient competition to force better performance products at lower prices. Worth waiting for.

Funny you should mention Zen, here's a new (12/13/2016) and interesting video by AMD talking about Ryzen.
On schedule, fast, efficient and it looks like the first Ryzen will be on the desktop (skip to 20:00 on the video):

https://youtu.be/4DEfj2MRLtA

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Message 45757 - Posted: 16 Dec 2016 | 11:55:54 UTC - in response to Message 45734.

8cores/16threads for 95W that matches (in carefully selected performance areas) a 16thread 140W Intel CPU costing £1100 is noteworthy because performance ways its competitive, in terms of power usage it's very competitive and no doubt the price will be lower.
Didn't see any mention of PCIe lanes. So they are keeping the lid on that.
The 4MB L2 cache is low but the 16MB L3 cache will likely help support GPU compute/reduce multi GPU bottlenecking in that area, and hints that the PCIe lane count will be high rather than low. While PCIe lane support for Ryzen might depend on how good the CPU actually is, AMD need to give us 64 PCIe lanes; they will be competing with 200-series Intel based systems which are likely to increase PCIe lane count as well. At the i3/i5 end of the markets we might even see better PCIe support from both Intel and AMD.
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