Worth going to a Quad Core?

By sethbest
Feb 6, 2009
  1. I've upgraded my main system about as far as i can go and am looking into buying a new one. I've been building pc's long enough to know the game on most everything but reading up on processor developement has got me a bit stumped.

    Basicaly- Dual and Quad cores are not being fully utilized yet, but are predicted to be the way of the future, especialy now with 64 bit integration. But I have also read that the multiple cores' are only important for multi tasking, and if you are just looking for performance just focus on speed. Now is this the case because applications aren't utilizing the multiple cores yet, and if i buy a 3-4ghz processor will it be trumped when the dual and quad cores start being fully used.

    Guess i dont want to be where i was when i bought my last pc and everyone said the pci express was dead tech and i should get a agp mobo. Is this the time to wait and see how thigns turnout first? or a good time to buy?
  2. mflynn

    mflynn TS Rookie Posts: 2,655

    I think if all is maxed out now but you are reasonably happy with the performance then I would wait!

    If you are not much of a multitasker then you are correct the 3.4 single core or higher is better!

  3. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 3,481   +44

    Well I upgraded and I thought about a few things, decided it was a good time. Some things I thought about. There's a quad that's affordable that can hit 4ghz easily with no issues. Triple channel offers a considerable amount of bandwidth over ddr2 dual channel. The video cards cant get much better, its coming to a "not so steep curve." I do a lot of gaming and some encoding while I game, so I thought it was a good choice.

    If you dont do a lot of multitasking as mflynn said all these items are a waste. A core 2 duo setup would be fine for any other single task usage.
  4. rev_olie

    rev_olie TS Maniac Posts: 560

    I do allot of multitasking and usually am doing allot of things at once eg homework (Word Access etc) along with Music or Video usually having Email going and browsing the web with the usual antivirus running.

    I have the Intel Core 2 Quad go stepping

    I have it OC'd to 3.0GHZ and runs well. It can go higher but i don't want it to give up on me any time soon.

    Again like the others have for multitasking its really good however if you doing one thing then its not worth the fuss as you can get faster dual core processors for the same price.
  5. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,433   +143

    Well, i can't recommend getting a quadcore just because your using word, playing music, decoding video, and using a web browser at the same time, even single cores could handle that fine.

    I would say...buying a quad won't be worth it this year, or even next year for gaming. When you actually do need quads, you will be able to get one for much less money than if you got one now, probably even octocores, i think the 32nm intel westmere shrink will come in 8 core flavors.

    Quad cores are pretty much only effective in multimedia applications and stuff, even my punny 2.4ghz dual core can run multiple games at once on top of normal applications.
  6. rev_olie

    rev_olie TS Maniac Posts: 560

    Its fantastic for gaming. It you stupidly wanted you can run 3-4 games simulataniously if you needed and it wouldn't falter. Its never gone over 5% load when gaming and delivers truly.

    Its not ONLY good for them its very good at those and can handle everything else brilliantly.
  7. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,433   +143

    Well...ok, they are not ONLY effective in multimedia applications, but generally don't improve gaming performance unless you have three or more graphics cards.

    You can't actually be PLAYING multliple games at a time, if you could, quads would be usefull, but you can't, and simply running the game and minimizing it does not take much CPU power.
  8. sethbest

    sethbest TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 79

    all good tips, thanks for the info everyon.
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