Want your input on my bottleneck(s) and future upgrades

By mopar man
Jul 17, 2010
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  1. Okay my fellow techies. I recently got a job and FINALLY got around to building my rig. I was on a bi-weekly budget and needed the computer ASAP, so I bought the parts over a month and a halfs time.

    This is what I ended up with:

    Foxconn M61PMP-K AM3 NVIDIA MCP61P Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

    AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition Heka 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Processor HDZ720WFK3DG

    CPU Fan:
    ZALMAN CNPS7000C-AlCu 2 Ball CPU Cooler59616041

    SAPPHIRE 100284L Radeon HD 5750 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card58994536

    APEVIA ATX-JV650W 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Power Supply

    Crucial 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 (PC3 8500) Desktop Memory

    Western Digital Caviar Blue WD10EALS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

    I salvaged an old Nemesis case from a buddy so I could get it built faster.

    Now, I know I need another stick of ram for a total of 4Gigs, which is plenty for me for a while...

    What I'm uncertain about is where I should plan on upgrading in the future. I'm pretty disappointed with the 5750's DX11 performance in Metro, and I'm hoping it's my lack of ram, but in Darkfall (www.darkfallonline.com) i'm getting about 30 fps with shadows enabled on max settings.

    What else should I consider upgrading? I can't unlock the 4th core on my x3 (a factor I didn't take into consideration) because my bios doesn't support it. At least, not the current version anyway.

    A note on the motherboard...
    For the price, it's a pretty decent piece of hardware. It does have the ability to overclock, but not to change voltages. Overclocking comes in the form of a program on the utilities CD that allows you to overclock dRam voltage and PCI-E clock speed.

    So...What do you guys think?
  2. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,318   +117

    I'd go with a corsair 450w.

    Also, I'd use an Athlon II X3 instead, save about $20 - $30.

    Wait what; you've listed a 2gb kit but you'r planning on 4gb?

    I'm in a rush, I might not be thinking this through 100%.
  3. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492


    Sorry, I failed to push the point that that's what I've already purchased and built. It's what I'm running now. :) I need to update my system specs....

    I plan on buying another 2GB stick to cap my Mobo out at 4GB. It's supposed to be limited to 4GB, but I've heard that's just a gimmick...
  4. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,867   +74

    Hi Mopar,
    do you have a budget for this upgrade?
    you need the 750 SB or better for the ACC function to try and unlock the 720.


    About $100.00 seems to be the threshold to get a board with the 750 SB
    adding another 2GB for 4GB of ram is always a good idea.
    don't feel bad about Metro 2033, the games is a ***** graphically if you want to play at high detail.
  5. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 8,390   +205

    I think so too. I don't actually have one but I placed this motherboard in a Newegg wishlist for a potential budget micro ATX PC. I really think you should get a better graphics card. I don't feel yours is a particularly good gamer. Don't get me wrong. I'm not trying to denigrate your card, just saying that it could be better. As to which one, how much are you willing to spend on a card?

    Also, your single RAM module is running in single channel mode. Your motherboard supports dual channel so when you get the 2nd RAM module, you'll get a bit of a speed boost with dual channel.
  6. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    I don't plan on upgrading immediately, but I'm looking to see what I need and then I'll determine my budget as I'm gonna be buying a laptop soon, and will have to do so with monthly payments.

    I was thinking that you had to have ram that specifically supported Dual Channel mode?

    And yeah, I'm very disappointed with the 5750's performance, so I will probably upgrade sooner or later, but not till I must.

    Is it really worth buying a new mobo for the 4th core, or just upgrading to an x6 in the future?

    And by the way, I paid $50 for that motherboard.
  7. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,318   +117

    Nah, probably won't work anyway.
  8. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    Okay, so I'll probably just buy an X6. First things first is the ram though.
  9. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,392   +16

    The 5750 was not designed to run Metro 2033 maxed w/ DX11 and even high-end cards struggle to give you playable frames. For what it offers the 5750 isn't a bad deal for a mid-range albeit a little high in price imo.

    If you are looking for a new card replacement the best bang for the buck at the moment is the latest GTX 460 which starts at $199. It offers quite a bit for its price and has a lot of OC potential. Just don't expect to play Metro 2033 maxed in DX11 either as it struggles with it like all cards do :p .

    RAM would be the best thing to upgrade first indeed. But the CPU you have is good no need to get an X6 so soon. You can probably wait it out for some time till you need to move on and by then there will be better options around.
  10. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,318   +117

    Not worth it...I think the Phenom II X3 720 is great.
  11. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    Ahh okay, see, My biggest and only REAL complaint is that I cannot run Darkfall with Shadows... I'm hoping it's the RAM. What do you think?
  12. Relic

    Relic TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,392   +16

    The minimum system requirements for Darkfall;

    Operating System: Windows XP, Vista
    Processor: 2.5GHz Pentium 4, or equivalent
    RAM: 1GB for Windows XP, 2GB for Windows Vista
    Graphics Card: 128MB PixelShader 2.0 support
    Hard Drive Space: 12 GB Free Space Minimum

    I can't say for sure but really the only thing lacking is your RAM. From browsing around I read many running with less of a system then yours so you should be good. However I read complaints by some with higher end systems then yours getting serious lag during siege (which I assume is huge pvp battle) when shadows was enabled. Most recommended turning them off or you won't be able to play properly. My experience from playing other MMO's in huge battle situations is similar, that it's very difficult to run everything maxed with hundreds of other players.
  13. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    Yeah, sieges run commonly at about 100 people+, and yes, I do lag. I even lag with shadows off.

    I'm going to assume the GPU would help a ton during sieges? I'm honestly not sure what would be used most during that...
  14. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    Okay update... I've found that the Foxconn utility used to overclock my cpu (BIOS has no overclocking ability) actually slows the computer down, for example causing CS:S to shoot down 10 fps boosting from 2.8 to 3.2 (it won't go higher without freezing).

    And so now, I'm getting approximately $2500 in a couple weeks, what should I upgrade?

    I'm thinking about getting a 460 or something similar to beat the 5750, as I get lag in games such as Mafia 2 (when maxed out) every now and then, and with Apex physics, it absolutely kills my FPS.

    What do you think?
  15. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,318   +117

    $2500 USD is quite a lot.
    IMO the 460 isn't a big enough upgrade to warrant upgrading to it from a 5750.
    EDIT: Damnit I though it said 5830.
  16. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,867   +74

  17. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    I meant, I have access to 2500, but only want to spend a certain amount on my hobbies xD Sorry. And yeah, I was thinking it would be. Monitor wise I was looking at Samsungs monitor here:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824001424&Tpk=samsung b2330hd

    Think that's a good monitor? I'll be in a dim room with dark walls (dark blue to be exact) So glare issues shouldn't arise...

    Thanks for the input!


    I've determined I'm not sure if the 460 will meet my standards. I'm hoping for proper FULL 1080P gaming, so is the 470 going to be a necessity? I have an AMD X3 2.8ghz processor, and can't over clock it properly (terrible motherboard...), so would it bottleneck it?
  18. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,318   +117

  19. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    My post must have not went through yesterday...

    See, that deals now gone, but I didn't have the money atm anyway. It looked good though. If anyone knows a common monitor chosen by gamers in the 250=300 price range, I'd love to hear input.
  20. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,867   +74

    1080p resolution is 1920 x 1080, the same number of pixels as say a 24" monitor. It does not matter if you are running a 1080p 50' monitor, a pixel is a pixel is a pixel. the 460 will handle 1920 x 1080 resolution handily, and thus a 1080p television.
  21. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,280   +23

    mopar man, I advise grabbing a GTX 460, preferably from EVGA. It's well worth the price IMHO, and I'm in the market for one as well. Also, if you have some more cash to spend, try getting a better cooler like the Tuniq Tower 120 or the Xigmatek HDT-S1284 (with the backplate) so you clock your CPU higher.

    For a monitor, I prefer buying an Acer, LG, Dell or Samsung LCD.
  22. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    But i've noticed that charts are showing the 460 lacks the ability to run higher resolutions on high settings?
    thats what i worry about...
  23. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,318   +117

    1920 x 1080 isn't that high, obviously the gTX460 doesn't keep up with the big cards, but I think you'll be happy with it on a 24' monitor as long as you get the 1GB version.
    Thats a subjective statement though.
  24. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,280   +23

    It runs @ 1920x1200 reasonably well and beats up pretty well on the ATI equivalent. If you really need that extra bit of performance, go for a GTX 470\HD 5850; the GTX 470 can usually be had cheaper than the ATI card with rebates and free games.
  25. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Topic Starter Posts: 1,492

    I'm wanting to upgrade my motherboard. I want the ability to unlock/overclock my x3 720 and the future upgrade potential. I just purchased a 460 (Superclocked and the AR version so I have the lifetime warranty and step up option).

    My question is now, what motherboard should I go with? I'm looking at the ASUS M4N98TD EVO, but I'm not sure as to whether it supports AMD Overdrive and I'm getting very confused with information in this area being spread across the internet like salt in a haystack...

    Anyone know anything?

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