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Old processor: Intel Q9550 still good enough for my use?

By burn3h ยท 11 replies
Aug 31, 2012
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  1. So I purchased the Intel Q9550 about four years ago, and I'm wondering for how long it will hold. I recently purchased a new graphics card: SAPPHIRE RADEON HD7870 2GB PCI-E DVI/HDMI/DP, and I am wondering for how long this old processor can
    last before I have to change it to something better. Any ideas?
  2. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,043   +4,768

    Thats a question that only you can answer for yourself. If you are still happy with it then it is still good enough for your use.

    Personally for Intel CPU's any quad core is still plenty of power for an average user. I might shake my finger at a LGA775 dual core but not a quad.
  3. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,703   +171

    Depends on what you're doing. If you do any sort of CPU intensive work then you'll see a huge benefit if you upgrade to an Ivy Bridge system. For gaming I'd say it's just about ok but by the time Intel release their Haswell processors next year you should seriously consider upgrading.
  4. hood6558

    hood6558 TS Evangelist Posts: 353   +110

    Believe it or not, these CPUs still go for more than an i7-3770K - http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&ke...vpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=b&ref=pd_sl_22valzuwkt_b
    I'm not sure why, but maybe it's because so many users still have the socket 775 platform and this is the top CPU that fits. Check out this chart on high end CPUs http://www.cpubenchmark.net/high_end_cpus.html You may notice that, although the i7-3770K has almost 2.5 times the processing power, the Q9550 costs $50 more RIGHT NOW! If I had one, I'd put it on eBay for $329.99, take the money and buy an i7-3770K. Look that CPU chart over carefully, and note some of the bad *** CPUs between the Q9550 and the i7-3770K, and realize that for the cost of a Z77 mobo and some cheap RAM ($200!), you could have a system 3 or 4 times as fast ( if you sell the Q9550 for $330). Let us know how it works out.
  5. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,043   +4,768

    Thats because these CPU's are getting harder to find and the merchants that do have them are taking advantage of the lack in quantity. In essence from any merchants stand point the supply is lower and the demand is higher unless a total system rebuild is an option.

    I agree with you, personally I would recommend a total system rebuild because a $120 i3 will perform as well or better than any LGA775 quad core processor. The $200 plus dollars in savings would get you the other hardware items needed for the upgrade.
  6. Scavengers

    Scavengers TS Booster Posts: 110   +21

    Somethig to keep in mind is that the last of the Core 2 Quad cpu's (such as your Q9550) were extremely powerfull for their time.
    To this day they still hang close or even outperform the Phenom 2 and FX parts from AMD in many benchmarks, especially games, and people still are building budget to mid range gaming machines with those AMD cpus now.

    And with the q9550 you will almost certainly get a good overclock. I used one in my own gaming PC until I finally replaced it with a Sandy Bridge system I built last year and I can assure you that at 3.7 ghz it had no problem keeping pace in any game I used it for.

    The reason they are still so pricy is because they are drop in performance for millions of old dual core and early series Intel quad cores.

    Seriously. I bet you would be surprised at the performance you get in your games combined with a video card such as your 7870.

  7. hood6558

    hood6558 TS Evangelist Posts: 353   +110

    My brother has a Core 2 Quad Q6600 that he swears is fast enough for him, and he's hanging on to XP as well, but I'm slowly wearing him down with glowing tales of speed and power and bus bandwidth. He's been talking about letting me build his next system. He's an older brother who started fooling with computers 10 years before me, so he knows a lot of stuff I'll probably never know. I'm better with hardware, though (I'm an auto mechanic by trade). He's always had a faster computer than me until now. I feel like I should give mine to him (he gave me my first computer when I had nothing). But I'd rather talk him into building one faster than mine! At least an i7-3770K with 16 GB of fast RAM. Then the balance would be restored.
  8. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,357   +116

    I think the Core2Quad LGA775 platform still packs a punch. Not anywhere near as fast as the latest Intel stuff for sure, but when you're running an SSD its hard to see the difference until you really tax the CPU. I've built plenty of systems using the latest components and they don't feel any snappier in normal usage than my system (Q6600) does -- but they do come into their own when you push them harder, especially those with hyper-threading.

    I'd agree you should be looking to upgrade once Haswell hits retail.
  9. croptonboy

    croptonboy TS Rookie

    As said, it depends what you're doing. If you're doing a lot of video encoding and you want it faster, then upgrade. If it's just for games, perhaps a graphics card upgrade is needed (as you have done), if the system is a generally sluggish, perhaps a SSD upgrade. If it's fine for everything you do, the the answer is simple, no! :)
  10. hood6558

    hood6558 TS Evangelist Posts: 353   +110

    Yeah, by the time my big brother is ready to build, Haswell should be out, and will better justify the upgrade. If he balks at spending the money, I could always sell him my Ivy 3570K and get me a Haswell.....hmmmmm.....yes, I believe I will....oh are you still there, sorry, I went off somewhere for a sec. The thing is, those old LGA 775 chipsets and boards don't have the architecture improvements and bus speeds of a new Z77 board. In particular memory is handled much better now and is no longer a bottleneck or overpriced like DDR and DDR2. I love old hardware that still works (I've restored several P4 and Athlon systems to working condition, with upgrades). But for my main desktop, I'd rather be up-to-date, plus I get hands-on experience with new hardware.
    Arris likes this.
  11. NickF

    NickF TS Rookie

    I have been using an old Q9550 to attempt to upgrade my Microsoft certs to Windows server 2012 and have come across 1 issue. Under Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V does not offer all of its extensions due to its lack of SLAT support. Under Windows 8 it will not even install. Of course if this is not an issue to you then it is still an excellent processor.
  12. klepto12

    klepto12 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,115   +9

    Clock that baby to 3.8 ghz and ride it out lol. In all seriousness sell that bad boy and build at least an i5 3570k system. I Had a q9550 and replaced it with my now current rig i5 2500k and it is a whole new ballgame.

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