Need help with upgrading

By Werner
May 17, 2013
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  1. Hello, hope anyone can help me decide on what to do

    my current setup:

    MOTHERBOARD: ASUS M3A78-CM AM2 + (AMD 780V CHIPSET)

    PROCESSOR: AMD PHENOM 2 X4 955 BLACK EDITION PROCESSOR REV C3 @3.2 GHZ

    GRAPHICS CARD: PowerColor PCS+ HD7870 Myst. Edition 2GB GDDR5

    MONITOR: SAMSUNG LED LCD 23" (1920X1080)

    MEMORY: 2x2GB HYNIX DDR2 800 (DEFAULT TIMINGS)

    My motherboard is almost 4 years old now and obviously the ddr 2 memory is holding back the rest of my system.

    Should I buy an AM3 + motherboard with 8 gigs of DDR3 1600 memory and upgrade to AMD STEAMROLLER next year or just go intel?

    For me the LGA 1155 is a "dead socket" and don't know if it's a wise choice going the intel route.

    With the next gen consoles using all AMD hardware would I be better off sticking with AMD?

    If history repeats itself AMD EXCAVATOR would be backwards compattible with AM3 + I can always hope.

    If I do decide to stay with AMD I will get the following:

    ASUS M5A97 Evo MOTHERBOARD

    Apacer Black Panther 2x4GB DDR3 240-Pin DIMM, 1.5V [DDR12800] 1600 Mhz gaming memory

    I'd appreciate any suggestions

    Thanx in advance
  2. JC713

    JC713 TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 6,680   +870

    Well, DDR4 will become standard in the next 2-3 years, so you will end up in the same boat as you are now. But DDR4 is really just 1.35V DDR3 @ 2400MHz (different chips of course). The AMD FX 6350 (just released) is a great choice on the market right now. I would recommend sticking with either Kingston, Crucial, or Corsair for RAM. Any RAM >1600MHz will do you fine (anything above 1600MHz will provide little to no performance improvements). The next generation AMDs is probably your best choice. Intel will futureproof you longer, but AMD is really stepping up their game.
  3. Werner

    Werner Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Hi, thanx for your unbiased reply I appreciate it, I don't OC so the memory brand should not be an issue and that apacer memory kit is actually very very good. It's not long now before Haswell's arrival so I've decided to wait until then and see what It'll offer in terms of performance over IVY, I would imagine not enough to warrant an upgrade over IVY and it would be foolish to go with LGA 1155 right now, but nevertheless I'll probably stay with AMD cause I like supporting the "underdog" and if I get the AM3 + board I will be waiting for STEAMROLLER
  4. JC713

    JC713 TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 6,680   +870

    Good choice. Keep in mind though, Haswell is a new socket (1150), so it wont work on Z77 boards. AMD has really been improving lately, but I would wait to buy the motherboard since the chipset could get revisions with the release of new CPUs.
  5. Werner

    Werner Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Yes I know that's why I said it would be foolish to go with LGA 1155 right now. That is what I wanted to ask you, in my country only the ASUS M5A97 Evo and the M5A97 is available where the 970 chipset is concerned. on asus's global site there is the ASUS M5A97 Evo R2.0 and the M5A97 R2.0
    what is the difference between those and will asus still provide driver and bios updates for the M5A97 Evo?
    I wanted to get the MSI 970a-G46 but I heard that it has bad quality VRM's and issues with the fx 8 core cpu's but other people don't have issues with it. Should I wait for the R2.0 version of the M5A97 Evo board?
  6. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,749   +1,421

    I disagree. While LGA1155 may not be on the bleeding edge, it still has plenty of processing potential. If you want to wait for the next best thing, thats your prerogative but that doesn't mean purchasing now is foolish.
  7. Werner

    Werner Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    I agree with what you're saying but if I can get an LGA 1150 based motherboard with a i5 4570 for the same price as a 1155 setup it would just make more sense going that route.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  8. chrissof

    chrissof TechSpot Member Posts: 73

    Is DDR 2 really holding back a system compared to DDR 3?how much does it slow you down?after what I´ve read in your post I would stick to that X4,get a 970 chipset board like gigabytes 970 series,add 8 GIG of RAM and you are good to go for a while.wait for major changes in hardware and only then upgrade
  9. JC713

    JC713 TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 6,680   +870

    If he can go Intel why go AMD? (please dont start a flame war.)
  10. chrissof

    chrissof TechSpot Member Posts: 73

    No flame wars,for sure.but why go intel?I´m gaming on a budget for years,always looking to find the best stuff for as little money as possible...thats where AMD kicks in.
    I think that they deliver good performance,relativly good future-proofness(8 physical cores,high clocks...)
    and for gaming that should be the things to consider.sure Intel is looking good in benchmarks,but that is not real-life.I don´t do movies,compressing and so on.why not buy cheaper?
  11. Spykezxp

    Spykezxp TechSpot Booster Posts: 133   +19

    Nothing against Intel, but AMD is great for a "budget" gaming pc build. My current gaming pc uses an AMD FX-6300 and it is better than I thought it would be. I'm on a budget and it was what I could afford at the time. So far it has handled all the games I could throw at it and hasn't backed down yet. I've had both Intel and AMD computers and I'd say go with what you can afford. The ASUS M5A97 Evo is a good motherboard and has room for future upgrades.
     
  12. Werner

    Werner Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Guys thanks for all the replies, I'm just gonna wait and see what Haswell has to offer in terms of performance, should not be much over IVY I would imagine. If I decide to stay with AMD I will be getting the ASUS M5A97 Evo R2.0 (for a bargain) motherboard with a decent 8 gig DDR3 1600 memory kit, keep my Phenom 2 x4 955 and grab a Steamroller when it releases. There has been a lot of talk going around that you'd be better off going with AMD because of the fact the PS4 and XBOX ONE are using AMD hardware and games will be better optimized for AMD. Is there any truth to this what do guys think?
    Also do you think that Excavator might be backwards compatible with AM3+ and or will current and future AM3+ cpu's be compatible with AMD's next Socket whatever that will be?


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