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Is it worth getting a new CPU along with a GPU?

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I currently have a semi-weak desktop computer, containing: HD 5670, Athlon II x4 635e, 4GB ram and 500GB harddrive.

 

I was thinking in upgrading my GFX card to a newer one such as HD 6990, or 6890. I'm a little worried though that the processor will be holding down the performance of the computer. Should I upgrade the CPU as well? Or is it good enough to handle what I currently have + a new GPU?

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As with any discussion into computer hardware the question is what are you going to be doing with it?

 

Unless your going to be doing anything too massive then do you need the upgrade?

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It depends on the software you will be running.

 

For gaming you don't need a lot of CPU after the game itself is loaded, most of your load will be on you graphics CPU.

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Indeed if you are looking to increase your gaming performance you probably do not need to upgrade your CPU. But if you are looking to boost openGL accelerated rendering, then I you need to consider upgrading your CPU.

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Is it a factory made computer? What's the model?

 

If not, can you at least tell us the motherboard you have in there and the PSU as well. Maybe they can't facilitate an upgrade without being upgraded themselves.

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If you can afford a new CPU along with the GPU, then why not?

 

Just be sure that you buy a compatible processor for your motherboard (make sure your board/BIOS supports it). Otherwise you may be also looking at a new board and new RAM.

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I'm pretty sure i'm beating a dead horse at this point, but we will need to know what you're going to be doing. Gaming? Photo editing? Video effects?

 

If you're upgrading your GFX, you don't need to upgrade your CPU. Most of the time you wont even notice a big change with your CPU upgrades.

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As most people have answered, we need to know what you are going to do with it. Is it factory made, or did you build it yourself? If you were to upgrade, how much would you like to spend? A lot of new stuff has come with 2012, and the new Intel Ivy Bridge is probably one of the most popular topics as of right now. Also, with the new Kepler architecture comes the GeForce 600 series. Not only that, but AMD has also released their new stuff. If you were to upgrade your GPU for example, I'd probably recommend a 7970 rather then a 6990. However, your CPU is getting a little old and might get bottle necked by such GPUs. Okay so the 7970 is about $560 while the 6990 is about $770. That would leave you with $210 left to use on a new CPU. A i5 2500k is around $245 and would work very well with that GPU. It would most certainly not get bottle necked, and is safe for the future. As it is the 2500k, it is unlocked. You will be able to overclock it to around 4,2/4,3GHz with a cheap after market cooler. So yeah. It's up to you really. The 7970 and i5 2500k would allow you to do pretty much anything you want. You are able to max out every game out on the market, and you should be pretty fine rendering movies and stuff by adding another 2GB of RAM.

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If you plan on using the computer for power gaming, then a graphic card upgrade should come before CPU upgrade.

As I see no problem with your CPU. The video card is the weakest link and it should be paid attention to first.

 

You can also get some performance upgrade by getting a SSD. It will speed everything up from windows boot time, application open time, to game map change etc.

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As with most others, it really does depend on what your doing with it. For example I develop software on my machine, and with that spec I would be leaving the GPU where it is and upgrading the CPU, maybe adding more memory. Whereas Nathan plays his games for example so would probably want a decent GPU and also CPU for his development. It really is dependant on its use.

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Your CPU is quite okay. You don't need to upgrade it. Just upgrade your Graphics Card and make sure your Power Supply can handle it.

 

Always remember that Power Supplies are the heart of every system unit.

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Upgrading the GPU is, generally speaking, easier than upgrading the CPU. Very often by the time that you are tired of your old CPU, a lot of things have changed and the latest CPU won't fit on your old motherboard. From my experience, it will make more sense to improve the performance of your computer in other ways. Other ways would include changing your os.

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If you ahve the cash I dont see why not... More CPU always help.... Plus it might help run games better on that better graphics card ;)

 

End of the day this is what it all comes down to. Money

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Upgrading the GPU is, generally speaking, easier than upgrading the CPU. Very often by the time that you are tired of your old CPU, a lot of things have changed and the latest CPU won't fit on your old motherboard. From my experience, it will make more sense to improve the performance of your computer in other ways. Other ways would include changing your os.

 

Changing your OS doesn't necessarily improve your performance...

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Changing your OS doesn't necessarily improve your performance...

 

You don't think so? Have you tried changing from Windows to Linux? That would be a good way to find out for yourself whether changing the os makes any difference.

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Well today's next gen games are very demanding! Not only they require a decent graphic card but also a ample computing power too :)

Like for example the game GTA 4, its a very demanding game because not only it reuires a high range graphic card like a Radeon HD 6870 1 GB GDDR5, it also requires a decent CPU too like core i processors :)

 

So I would suggest you that if you are buying a graphic card for your P.C. consider upgrading your CPU as well :)

Now with the third generation processors Ivy-Bridge on sale, consider those too!

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You don't think so? Have you tried changing from Windows to Linux? That would be a good way to find out for yourself whether changing the os makes any difference.

Why go that far?

Either downgrade from Vista to XP or Upgrade from XP to Windows 7... That'll show you the light.

Edited by ridwan sameer

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Changing your OS doesn't necessarily improve your performance...

It absolutely does. On some of my old development computers I ran XP on and they actually run faster on Linux or Windows 7. Not sure why exactly, but they do. I know it has something to do with 32bit vs 64bit and how many threads the OS can process at once.

 

Well today's next gen games are very demanding! Not only they require a decent graphic card but also a ample computing power too :)

Like for example the game GTA 4, its a very demanding game because not only it reuires a high range graphic card like a Radeon HD 6870 1 GB GDDR5, it also requires a decent CPU too like core i processors :)

 

So I would suggest you that if you are buying a graphic card for your P.C. consider upgrading your CPU as well :)

Now with the third generation processors Ivy-Bridge on sale, consider those too!

You normally use quite a bit of CPU usage to get the game loaded, but after that it's almost all Video RAM and processing.

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You don't think so? Have you tried changing from Windows to Linux? That would be a good way to find out for yourself whether changing the os makes any difference.

 

Ya know Im playin with ubuntu at the moment, and personally I dont feel the OS is any faster than windows these days tbh.

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Ya know Im playin with ubuntu at the moment, and personally I dont feel the OS is any faster than windows these days tbh.

 

I apologize for not being more specific. I shouldn't have said "Linux" because Linux has many distros and the latest Ubuntu is not a lightweight distro. If you want something lightweight, try Slacko Puppy 5.3.3 which you can get from here:

 

http://puppylinux.org/main/Download%20Latest%20Release.htm

 

It is less than 120Mb in size and can be run totally from a pendrive. It also has support for 3G modems. If all you do is surfing the net, Slacko Puppy is more than sufficient for your purposes. Actually I have a Slacko Puppy on a pendrive with my favorite browser and all my bookmarks and passwords. I use it when I am away from home and I can borrow someone else's computer. Then I boot up from my pendrive and I have everything I need at my fingertips.

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You Really Cant use that CPU if your planning to buy a good mid - HIgh end GPU, because your CPU will Bottleneck performance(CPU cant send fast enough to the GPU) Maybe get a Cheap Phenom II and a a 6770 ip you're on a tight budget but want to play at High settings.

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