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Old 03-20-2009, 03:54 PM   #1
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Default Would an i7 build be worth my money?

So. Having grown tired of the rebooting problems with my computer (which I have managed to pin on my Gigabyte GA-MA790FX-DS5 motherboard) and seeing that Gigabyte are less than likely to replace the motherboard with one that works because they probably won't be able to prove the issue, I've been wondering whether or not it is worth my money (and time) upgrading to a Core i7 build.

Overall, I was less than impressed with the Phenom 9950 and 790FX chipset as it was, but this issue is really getting on my nerves. I could probably sell this machine (including fault) for ~£500 in the right place. With £600 on top of that, I could get a complete i7 system.

However, is there really such a huge performance increase? All I've been hearing is how good the i7 CPUs, X58 boards and DDR3 triple channel memory kits perform. In particular, power consumption, heat and overclocking potential make the whole package appeal to me. But are things really as good as the reviews say? Would I benefit that much from building one of these systems? I game a lot, do some graphic editing, video editing, recording, programming and I generally enjoy the power that you get from a high-performance workstation.

I guess the real question is, just how much better than the Phenom 9950/790FX combination is the i7 920/X58 combination?

Sorry if I've rambled a little, but this is a little bit rushed so I may have missed some things out completely.
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:13 PM   #2
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

For gaming, the Phenom II series of processors perform better in games. But, they can't compete with the i7 in editing. I'm still using a Q6600 and I do a good bit of editing. I'm fine with the performance I am receiving.
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:13 PM   #3
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

In a word... yes. But only if you warrant the power!

I've been looking at upgrades for my set up. I do a lot of audio production work and need a build that will handle lots of data through-put.

As much as i'd love to stick with AMD the i7 rigs are just out performing the AMD set ups.

I looked at a machine by Scan and it out performs an octo-core rig, 2 X Quad Core Xeon X5355 CPU's, for only £1500.

There just isn't a AMD equivalent out there and i'm starting to need the power to exploit my DAW's.
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:20 PM   #4
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

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Originally Posted by rohan23 View Post
For gaming, the Phenom II series of processors perform better in games. But, they can't compete with the i7 in editing. I'm still using a Q6600 and I do a good bit of editing. I'm fine with the performance I am receiving.
Whilst gaming is going to be the main use of my computer, the editing is also very important to me. Similarly, the ability to test and debug programs will be important, though I'm sure either the Phenom II or i7 could handle that easily enough.

I had considered the Core 2 Quads, but seeing as Intel have already released a new socket-type, I'm thinking that LGA775's time may be limited.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Remeniz
In a word... yes. But only if you warrant the power!

I've been looking at upgrades for my set up. I do a lot of audio production work and need a build that will handle lots of data through-put.

As much as i'd love to stick with AMD the i7 rigs are just out performing the AMD set ups.

I looked at a machine by Scan and it out performs an octo-core rig, 2 X Quad Core Xeon X5355 CPU's, for only £1500.

There just isn't a AMD equivalent out there and i'm starting to need the power to exploit my DAW's.
I would say I warrant the power - I tax my current machine heavily (at least, as heavily as it will let me!). That machine from Scan sounds pretty cool, but £1500 is a little above-budget for an all-at-once purchase. I'd be looking at a base price of £1000 for the basic system, which I would probably end up adding to over time. Plus, the things I'd get in the £1000 system that I've priced up today would probably suit my needs better.

I had heard some good things about the Phenom II but, to be honest, I felt pretty badly stung when the Phenoms and Core 2 Quads were competing and the AMD chips were being thrashed. And everybody does seem to be raving about the i7s.
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:24 PM   #5
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

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I would say I warrant the power - I tax my current machine heavily (at least, as heavily as it will let me!). That machine from Scan sounds pretty cool, but £1500 is a little above-budget for an all-at-once purchase. I'd be looking at a base price of £1000 for the basic system, which I would probably end up adding to over time.
It's a very nice machine, check the link in my previous post, the difference is i'd build it myself - so i'd save a bob or two as all i'd need is the motherboard, CPU, RAM and HSF.

The benchies for it are just crazy! Apparently it 'acts' as an 8 core set up. Together with the high caches and great motherboard chipset it makes for a very special machine.
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:26 PM   #6
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

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Originally Posted by Remeniz View Post
It's a very nice machine, check the link in my previous post, the difference is i'd build it myself - so i'd save a bob or two.

All i'd need is the motherboard, CPU, RAM and HSF.
Yeah. I haven't actually bought a complete system for a long time now. I prefer having the knowledge that I've put it together myself and I like to know that I know the system inside-out.

But for just short of £500 less I can get an Asus P6T Deluxe, i7 920, 6GB RAM, 1GB Radeon HD 4870 and a Creative X-Fi sound card, which I think I'd be happier with.

Four physical cores and eight logical cores? The i7s use Hyper-Threading, don't they?
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:41 PM   #7
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

yep... heres some info on the i7's.
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cpu...5-965-review/1
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Old 03-20-2009, 05:25 PM   #8
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

I think it would be worth your money, they are great gaming CPU's I'd go for it, that is, if I had the money!
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Old 03-20-2009, 05:28 PM   #9
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

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I think it would be worth your money, they are great gaming CPU's I'd go for it, that is, if I had the money!
I guess that's one of the benefits of 75% of my income being disposable. Fortunately, I still have more sense than money.

I guess it's just a case of seeing what Gigabyte say and seeing if anybody wants to buy a gaming PC that reboots itself every now and then under load. :/
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Old 03-20-2009, 05:44 PM   #10
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Default Re: Would an i7 build be worth my money?

I think it depends on whether £600 is a lot to you or not.

But it sounds like your perfectly satisfied with the performance of the 9950/790FX, is it really worth spending £600 more when you don't really need the extra performance?

I would probably just find a replacement for the board.
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