AMD/Intel dilemma

Discussion in 'Hardware Discussion & Support' started by Kizo, Dec 25, 2010.

  1. Kizo

    Kizo HHs Valve fanatic

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    Hi,
    I'm building a system for a cousin, and I was wondering if you guys would help me choose between these two systems which I can buy for the similar amount of cash: Intel i3 540/H55 and AMD Athlon X4 640/AMD 880G.

    The components won't change considerably in the next 3-4 years, and the PC would be mostly used for gaming(while it can :))/internet/multimedia purposes.

    Thank you for any thoughts.
     
  2. OldBuzzard

    OldBuzzard DH's oldest Geek

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  3. CJLMTLCA

    CJLMTLCA Ti > IT

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    I agree with OB. Are you going to build it and just hand it over and he uses it? Will you do maintenance and troubleshooting for him? If the system is transparent to him, then YOU decide what chipset you're comfortable building/tweaking/overclocking.
     
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  4. wtourist

    wtourist wtourist

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    Cheapskate that I am I'd look for the best combination deal price wise.
    For me the 880 platform offers more cost effective cpu upgrade, but no one knows what future tech is going..
    I expect video card choice will mean more than intel/ amd preference mb/cpu..
     
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  5. Kizo

    Kizo HHs Valve fanatic

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    Lol :D

    Thanks a lot for the advice, I think this is the solution, the Mobo for the AMD is from MSI, and for Intel its Asus. I think that it's best that I go with Intel for that reason (not that MSI is bad or anything, but Asus is more well known for quality IMO). :)

    Also, nice review, it was helpful, since its conclusion was that 4 cores is only making difference in professional apps (which my cousin won't use), and also the chip we're buying is slighly faster than the one used in the review. (i3 540) :)

    The price is almost identical since the other parts are identical (around 620EUR). :)

    And just for info here are the full system specs:
    Code:
    - CPU:  Intel Core i3 540 Box
    - MB:   Asus P7H55/USB3
    - RAM: Kingston 2GB 1333MHz DDR3 x2
    - GPU: Palit GTX460 768MB
    - PSU: Chieftec A80 500W Real Power
    - HDD: 500GB Western Digital 16MB Sata3
    - Monitor: PHILIPS 231E1SB/00 23" 1920x1080
    
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2010
  6. Stuart_Davidson

    Stuart_Davidson Well-Known Member

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    Should be a nice system and the fact the Intel/Asus board has USB3 is a bonus :)
     
  7. Kizo

    Kizo HHs Valve fanatic

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    Thanks...
    Now we have another dilemma about the GPU since we saw a Sapphire HD6850 for about 25 EUR more... :)
    We know it's about 10% faster and more power efficient, but we'll see, we've kinda stretched too much from originally planned budget (500EUR) :D
     
  8. OldBuzzard

    OldBuzzard DH's oldest Geek

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  9. blibbax

    blibbax nahm8

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    Personally, if it's a gaming PC, I'd go for the Intel solution. It tends to have the performance advantage in games that don't make decent use of 3 or more cores, which sadly is still many.

    I think you'd also get a bit more of an overclock out of it, though I could be wrong.
     
  10. iPlayer

    iPlayer Filled with noobsauce

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    What's the to buy list looking like?
     
  11. Tipstaff

    Tipstaff Well-Known Member

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    The problem with the Athlon II X4 is in the amount of cache it has per core (512kb), and/or the lack of L3 cache. While the i3-530 only has 256kb of cache per core it has 4MB of shared L3 cache, which is why it suprisingly holds it's own so well.

    Kizo, take a look at different sites "combo" or "bundle" deals. Sites like Newegg and NCIX will give great discounts when you buy their preset combos, be it complete systems, motherboard + CPU, motherboard + PSU, and so on. You could save yourself a lot of time and money this way.
     
  12. Teme

    Teme Super Moderator

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    Well he is in eurozone so Newegg is out of the question same applies for NCIX..
     
  13. dltre

    dltre New Member

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    Well, I find AMD is cheap and lacks performance and I like Intel and I think their chips are great. The Problem is that the i3 is only dual core but it is newer and that the AMD Quad core is older and lacks cache as said above earlier.
    I would definitely go with Intel for gaming.
     
  14. Tipstaff

    Tipstaff Well-Known Member

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    Other dealers have similar combo/bundle deals too. I just used Newegg and NCIX as 2 examples.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2010
  15. Kizo

    Kizo HHs Valve fanatic

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    Hi guys,
    sorry I haven't been able to respond in a while, I had a lot of work...
    However I managed to buy most of the parts yesterday.

    This is the final list:
    Code:
    - CPU:  Intel Core i3 540 Box
    - MB:   Asus P7H55/USB3
    - RAM: Kingston 2GB 1333MHz DDR3 x2
    - GPU: Palit GTX460 1GB SONIC
    - PSU: Chieftec A80 500W Real Power
    - HDD: 500GB Western Digital 16MB Sata3
    - Monitor: Philips LED 226CL2SB 21.5" 1920x1080
    Notice that I changed the regular GTX460 768MB with the Palit's 1GB GTX460 Sonic edition. I couldn't get my hands on a HD6850, hopefully the performance is similar (can someone please confirm this, or give an opinion?), but as I found in a techpowerup review, the power draw on the GTX460 is about 35-40W higher (hope the PSU can handle it).

    @OldBuzzard: I know that AMD has mobos that support USB3 (more than Intel, in fact), I had one for my optional AMD build. ;)

    Will post pics as soon as I can.
    Thank you for all the thoughts and help.

    Edit: Guys can anyone tell me if a SATA3 HDD works on a SATA2 mobo? Have I made a big mistake with this?? Haven't checked the mobo before buying if it supports SATA3 and it doesn't.

    Edit2: It will work, I found my answer at www.serialata.org .
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2010
  16. blibbax

    blibbax nahm8

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    Yeah, SATA is backwards compatible.

    Nice build you'll have there, and although I haven't heard of that specific PSU model, any decent 500W should be more than enough. You could get away with a 400W on an i3+single GPU system.

    Edit: I forgot to say, please post pics when it's done :p
     
  17. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

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    fyi... with the intel i3 540.... your going to be CPU limiting your graphics card a fair bit....

    Generally the highest GPU you'll want for that CPU will be a ATI 5770 at MOST... i found sticking something higher in just ... didn't see any real advantage until i moved to a intel i5 cpu...

    And don't get anything less then a 500 watt psu with a minimum total amps across 2x 12v rails being 36-40amps... Coolermasters Extreme PSU 500watt is a good place to start.

    And the P7H55-M Pro is a great motherboard....

    Personally with the very little dollar difference among the hardrives...... grab yourself a 640gb WD Caviar Black 64mb sata drive.... they are lightning fast
     
  18. Kizo

    Kizo HHs Valve fanatic

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    Some pics... sorry about the quality (iPhone 3G)

    Edit: @Judas Total amp on 2x12v is 40A Judas, and I thought the same about the bottleneck, if you see my previous post, you'll see that I initially planned a slower card, but since the monitor is 1080p and this CPU is very good at games (see links below) I thought the bottleneck would be minimal, of course more noticeable on CPU intensive games. Anyway, hope we didn't make a VERY bad choice. :) (maybe we can OC it in the future, I hear these go to 4GHz on air ;) )

    Links: Link1, Link2, Link3

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2010
  19. blibbax

    blibbax nahm8

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    I think at 1080p with a tasty overclock the bottlekneck will be minimal in most modern games.

    Gz on your new PC, and... buy some case fans and CPU coolage :p
     
  20. Kizo

    Kizo HHs Valve fanatic

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    Thanks mate, but it's really my cousins PC. I just had the fun of assembling it. :)

    About the cooling, I plan to put some case fans, but it's winter still, so no need to hurry. ;) The temps are acceptable, in about 18-19C room CPU: 33 idle, 44-46 load, GPU: 34 Idle, around 65-67 load.

    Also some quick numbers. I installed Win7 and everything, and tried Crysis Warhead for bechmark purposes :).

    With all settings on Gamer, except Shaders:Enthusiast , 1080p, 2x AA, VSync On we get 32-42FPS depending on environment, with dips to 25-26FPS. Nothing was OCd.
    Sorry I can't prove this with a screenshot, but I am no longer at my cousins, and we didn't use benchmark tools, just plain in game monitoring by ourselves. ;)
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2011

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