Answered Unexpected upgrade budget - how to spend it

Discussion in 'PC Gaming & Rigs' started by Presuming Ed, Jun 23, 2015.

  1. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    Hi,

    I need some help with spending some unexpected bonus budget of around £800.

    I currently have an i5-2400 and an 8gb MSI 290x. 16gb RAM in the PC.

    All I play are racing games, it's likely to stay this way. Around £200 of that budget will have to be put aside to put towards a VR headset when they're available. So my sole use for the gaming PC will be to play racing games using a VR headset. Secondary, before the headset comes out I'm likely to end up with a 3 monitor setup so would like to be able to support resolutions for that too.

    Issues with my current setup that I'm aware of
    • the processor is slightly under the recommended spec for the Rift
    • the processor and motherboard are LGA1155. I was considering getting a second hand processor that would fit the motherboard and meet the spec requirements before this windfall
    • the motherboard has only 1 PCI 2 x16 socket
    • the case is a bit rubbish
    So my options are limited - I can't get another 290x and go crossfire as I don't have enough sockets on the motherboard. A new motherboard, processor and 290x (and probably power supply) will push the budget a bit.

    Does anyone have any suggestions for the best solution for my requirements?
     
  2. Best Answer:
    Post #10 by SH Dan, Jun 25, 2015 (1 points)
  3. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    Hi,

    As you should be aware LGA1155 is EOL, So you could be restricted to a second hand CPU.

    1. Look around and see if anyone still has some stock of 1155 socket processors, try looking into a i5-2500k as this should be able to OC nicely, again as 1155 sockets are EOL you might be restricted to getting a second hand CPU. If you want you could also look into an i5-3570k it's important to get a overclock-able CPU to get the most out if it.

    2. Upgrade your mothboard to 1150 socket, and get try and get a i5-4690k, again you could look for a second hand motherboard and CPU. Then look into getting a second R9 290x (Not that important) and of course a new PSU, and if you budget allows for it get a new Case :)

    Personally I would go for option two.

    Only downside to option two is you are basically buying a whole new system.

    Hope this helps.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2015
  4. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    Hmm thanks - option 2 is tempting, the downside you mention is also kind of a plus!

    Looks like I can pick up a suitable motherboard for around £62 -

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/giga...-ddr3-pcie-30-(x16)-2-way-crossfirex-hdmi-atx

    And I note your point about a second GPU not being that important - it meets the recommended spec for the Rift. But at least this way I give myself the option to add one further down the line, maybe pick one up second hand.

    If I hold off the GPU I can look at power supplies (although from memory I think my current one is pretty decent and around 600w so would only need upgrading if I add another GPU) and maybe an SSD will fall within budget.

    Thanks.
     
  5. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    I agree with you about the downside I mentioned is also a plus :)

    Overall that motherboard looks like something that would be suitable for you.

    Another thing to consider would be just upgrading the GPU to something with a little more kick. If you did this then you could sell your current GPU, keep your current PSU overall this might be more cost effective. (Depending on how much you are able to get for your current card) Although with the current costs of a R9 290x this might not be the best way to go, you would need to look into this a little more and see if this is something worth considering.

    In regards to the SSD, If you haven't got one dedicated to games already it is well worth considering.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2015
  6. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    Sorry just one more question - I'm on the lookout for a cheap 2nd hand 290x - not rushing into anything, just pick one up if I see a bargain. The one I have is 8gb but I guess that doesn't matter - it would be OK to pick up a 4gb one?
     
  7. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    I believe you can do it but you'll only be able to use 4GB of the 8GB from your current card.

    My advice would be get another 8GB one again. If you're looking to use all the VRAM.
     
  8. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    Thanks. I've come to a decision. My current gaming PC is essentially the product of me doing the minimum to get up and running and I want to stop that trend. The current processor was liberated from an old office PC, I got a bit lucky with the GPU in that all I could afford at the time was a 270x but that broke after a few months and I got a refund, by which time I had enough to buy the 290x.

    So I'm now thinking about getting an i7-4790k, motherboard and 250gb SSD drive. These are essentially all I'll need. That leaves £400 in the kitty for the VR device. At the end of the year, if I feel I need extra GPU power, a straightforward upgrade - PSU and crossfire GPU - will be possible.

    So around £400 for the processor, a z97 motherboard and 250gb SSD. Seems a sensible way of blowing some bonus money?
     
  9. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    Blowing some money? consider it an investment with absolutely no return profit just hours of entertainment.:D

    Looks like you've got it all planned :), although I would say is a 250GB SSD going to be enough for games?
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2015
  10. boltlock

    boltlock
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    Yeah I'd be looking at a minimum of 512GB these days especially with the size of some games.
     
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  11. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    Best Answer
    Agree that he should be looking at 512GB at minimum for gaming. (If budget allows for it)

    Although it also depends on how many games he plays, if he doesn't have many then a 250GB should be fine. At least until he gets another "Unexpected upgrade budget" :)

    And as he said before "All I play are racing games".
     
  12. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    Yep full marks @SH Dan for remembering my original ramble - all I have are Assetto Corsa, Project CARS, RaceRoom and WreckFest. So I'll stick with 250mb for now - I have a few spinners too for old fashioned bulk storage.

    Thank you both very much for your guidance - I'll be putting the order in today and building tomorrow so will report back on progress, if I can tear myself away from Donnington Park for long enough that is.

    I'll be very interested to see the difference thw switch from an i5-2400 to this processor has on performance. In my ignorance I've been of the opinion that the CPU can't really affect framerates, that's all down to the GPU. So my expectation is low but I'm prepared to be pleasantly surprised.
     
  13. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    250mb isn't going to get you very far :D. Some games are very hard on the CPU and some aren't. Good luck and look forward to hearing your progress :)
     
  14. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    Ha OK I'll listen to the experts - any tips for a good value 500gb drive? Manufacturers to avoid?
     
  15. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    250GB is fine for your games, you said 250mb in your last post. :D

    One of the best manufacturers are Samsung by the way :)

    sorry for confusing you :)
     
  16. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    Ha too much reminiscing in the 'they don't know they're born' thread obviously! I did once try to chain a bunch of 10mb SCSI drives together but thankfully those days are long gone.
     
  17. Presuming Ed

    Presuming Ed
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    So all done. Thanks both. Am pleasantly surprised by framereates - I'm still at 1920x1050 as I can't get near the 4k 48" TV sat in the living room which is a shame. pCARS with cars and track up to ultra was still managing around 70-100 fps at Monza in a 20 car AI race. Assetto is up in the 150s with just about everything up to full.

    Bring on the rift / Vive. I'm ready!
     
  18. GMC79

    GMC79
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    Yeah the cpu still has to be good and can affect frames a lot if not quite up to it. Back when i was on my HD7950 and my x3 phenom at 3.5ghz games like far cry 3 for example at my settings was getting around 40-50fps, once i stuck the 4770k in the frames almost doubled. Good to hear it's better and was defo the way to go with the budget.:smashin:
     
  19. SH Dan

    SH Dan
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    :D I agree with GMC79 that it was the way to go.

    Enjoy your new gaming experience :)
     

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