Upgrading my gaming PCs...

Divide by zero

Active Member
While this may be more suited to the PC / Processor part of the forum, as I am only interested in gaming then I thought I would try here first.

I have 2 PCs,

PC1) i7 930, 2x GTX 480s.

PC2) E8400, 1x GTX 570.

(Ignore the rest of the components, not relevant here).

My question is this. I am getting a Sandy Bridge i7 2600k + mobo for xmas.

Do I stick it in PC1, then put the i7 930 / mobo etc in to PC 2

Or do I stick it in PC2.

While I know the SB is a better processer with more OC room etc... it doesnt have the tri-channel memory the 930 has.

Therefore, with gaming being my main concern - which way would you go?
 

Hillskill

Moderator/Games Reviewer
4GB of RAM is still more the adequate for gaming.
 

Divide by zero

Active Member
Erm... thanks for stating the obvious there both. :D

Deadringers, I am obviously getting rid of the e8400. But my dont know if to make the SB my main PC or not.
I have 2 gaming PCs, a main one and a 2nd one. I generally use the main one with 3D or my TV, but it's good to have a 2nd one for when I have mates over or the Mrs is playing farmville on my main rig *facepalm*. So you think SB for the main rig and I would be ok losing the tri-chanel memory?

Hillskill, 4GB of ram is generally enough yeah, but the i7 930 uses tri-chanel memory. Which means you are writing to 3 sticks at once and not 2 like with the newer SB. I'm not sure what impact this would have on gaming which is why I asked it here.

Despite my sarcasm, thanks for replying :)
 

Deadringers

Member
Erm... thanks for stating the obvious there both. :D

Deadringers, I am obviously getting rid of the e8400. But my dont know if to make the SB my main PC or not.
I have 2 gaming PCs, a main one and a 2nd one. I generally use the main one with 3D or my TV, but it's good to have a 2nd one for when I have mates over or the Mrs is playing farmville on my main rig *facepalm*. So you think SB for the main rig and I would be ok losing the tri-chanel memory?

Hillskill, 4GB of ram is generally enough yeah, but the i7 930 uses tri-chanel memory. Which means you are writing to 3 sticks at once and not 2 like with the newer SB. I'm not sure what impact this would have on gaming which is why I asked it here.

Despite my sarcasm, thanks for replying :)

you will not notice anything different with the memory mate. just as quick.

Yea SB for the main rig!
 

Hillskill

Moderator/Games Reviewer
Hillskill, 4GB of ram is generally enough yeah, but the i7 930 uses tri-chanel memory. Which means you are writing to 3 sticks at once and not 2 like with the newer SB. I'm not sure what impact this would have on gaming which is why I asked it here.

I know its 3 sticks mate. Thats what I am saying. Only a handful of games address 4GB of RAM and even then its useful for buffering FMV etc. You unlikely to ever see any dramatic rise in FPS, therefore it shouldn't really have an bearing on your decision. I would go with the SB and dual channel everytime.
 

Divide by zero

Active Member
I don't think you understand how tri-channel memory works?!

If you need to dump 1gb to ram, with dual channel it will stick 500mb on each stick... in tri channel it will stick 333mb on each, so when you come to reading back / writing the data, it is a lot faster in tri channel than dual channel. (a very basic explanation there...)

It has nothing to do with how much data you are writing and I am purely concerned about the speed. A system that only needs to write 2 GB will not be faster having more ram, but having more chanels to write to does speed it up.

The new socket 2011 systems have quad-channel memory so you write to 4 at the same time. This gives epic results in some hardcore benchmarks, but had litterally no boost in games. I remember when tri-channel came out though, it did have a boost for games and other real world examples.

Anyways, Deadringers says it's going to be ok so I am not argueing that tri-channel will be better over a faster processor - just making sure we are all on the same page.


EDIT: Link to some info
 
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Hillskill

Moderator/Games Reviewer
Thanks for the info. So in what typical day to day scenario could it benefit outside of gaming? RAM is something I have always treated as "buy more because its cheap" but other then that I have no major motivation to buy high spec or high volume.

EDIT: This excludes my Macs that I use for editing as the benefits are clear there.
 
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Divide by zero

Active Member
The faster your ram (Mhz, channel etc...) then the less wait time you have on this. If you are waiting on stuff being written to memory then it can hold up your other processes.
What other day to day uses... anything. Games, video / photo editing etc... Ram should not just be thought of in space but speed also.

Memory is important, but it is 2nd to CPU. There comes a point where having a faster CPU and slower memory will mean your PC will perform better regardless.

Looking at this: CPUS, you can see that the 2600k bests the 930 by a long shot. Tri-Chanel memory is better than dual channel and with a like for like CPU will be noticably better - but the 2600k is so much faster that I guess it becomes a moot point.

For me buying ram, i always buy faster than needed so OCing is easier. For the SB chips, you dont need to worry about this as you just up the multi and it doesnt touch the ram.

Can't wait till socket 2011 comes down in price though... fast as hell CPUs AND quad-channel memory. Awesome.
 
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Greg Hook

Moderator & Reviewer
There is very little, if any at all properly noticeable difference between different speeds of ram. Just make sure your system is running the RAM at the right timings and you will be fine.
 

..El Nino..

Well-known Member
I covered this issue a while back, only synthetic benchmarks proved triple channel was faster than dual, and obviously they dont count, in some cases dual channel was faster! Don't believe the hype in tri and quad channel.
 

namuk

Distinguished Member
30 Quid for a 6GB Tri-channel branded kit, people payed more for a mouse mat on here,
stick to 4gb though if your playing console ports and chess ect, if not go 6GB.
 

jjgreenwood

Well-known Member
30 Quid for a 6GB Tri-channel branded kit, people payed more for a mouse mat on here,
stick to 4gb though if your playing console ports and chess ect, if not go 6GB.

sounds like SB should go in the one connected to the TV then as I guess that'll play the console ports
 

Divide by zero

Active Member
Nam, sounds like you missed the point in this thread too... I must not explain myself right or something. The question is not about 4gb or 6gb, but dual channel or tri channel. As El Nino explained though, the difference is mainly in benchmarks and less so in real world.

What I have seen now is how much faster the 2600k is over the 930 (link above) and so the 2600k will become my main rig with the 2x 480. Then I will stick the 930 in my 2nd PC and run that with the 570.

What a pain in the arse! That means rebuilding both PCs now.

Thanks all - DbZ
 

semiskimmed

Distinguished Member
What I have seen now is how much faster the 2600k is over the 930 (link above) and so the 2600k will become my main rig with the 2x 480. Then I will stick the 930 in my 2nd PC and run that with the 570.

What a pain in the arse! That means rebuilding both PCs now.

Thanks all - DbZ

thats exactly what i would have done too :D
 

eiren

Distinguished Member
Best RAM is the one with timings that give you much more headroom for overclocking. As you said, real world differences in dual and tri channel memory are minimal if barely noticeable.
 

jjgreenwood

Well-known Member
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eiren

Distinguished Member
apparently paying more for ram only means it looks pretty in most cases

The Best Memory for Sandy Bridge | bit-tech.net

edit bit that matters:

The Best Memory for Sandy Bridge Gaming | bit-tech.net

I think that reviewer has missed the point :laugh:

The faster memory means you can potentially have a higher stable CPU overclock when linking the clock speeds to RAM timings. As he benchmarked them all at 3Ghz CPU clock, then it means he's not really testing anything real world.
 

namuk

Distinguished Member
only drifted over the thread Divide, one reason i just posted what i did as if your cpu can do Tri channel at the prices you can get the kits why not just slap one in as it is a no brainier i could understand if it was 200 quid or something but not mouse mat money:D,
i really do not see the problem there at all mate, even looking at reviews now ect there old and never updated even the Bios posted on the reviews are first or beta release ect, sometimes hardware reviews really get my back up as the attitude is "final" :thumbsdow just like plaints they grow i.e mature :D

also the i7 setup i see you want the 2011 why not get a 980x/990 as you can get them cheaper than the 2011 cpu's thing is the only real difference is the Mem controller which in Quad channel, put one of them in your system and the 2600k will be your second system, everyday/realworld computing you will notice going 6 core just like going 2 core too 4 core :) also the temps are around the same as the 2600k due to the 32nm but 6 core,
if i do replace my 1366 it will be 2011 though without a doubt even with ivy bridge coming which is to replace current SB, Doubt very much prices will drop on 2011 due to the prices of IV are around the same as 1366 release:(. still think the layout of the 2011 mb is daft even though it is the only way.


oh yea El Nino get your hand in your pocket pull out 30 Quid and get a tri mem kit it is Christmas you tight wad :D

Ba humbug




Nam, sounds like you missed the point in this thread too... I must not explain myself right or something. The question is not about 4gb or 6gb, but dual channel or tri channel. As El Nino explained though, the difference is mainly in benchmarks and less so in real world.

What I have seen now is how much faster the 2600k is over the 930 (link above) and so the 2600k will become my main rig with the 2x 480. Then I will stick the 930 in my 2nd PC and run that with the 570.

What a pain in the arse! That means rebuilding both PCs now.

Thanks all - DbZ
 

..El Nino..

Well-known Member
oh yea El Nino get your hand in your pocket pull out 30 Quid and get a tri mem kit it is Christmas you tight wad :D

Ba humbug

:laugh: Sooo true! I'm waiting til next year though, my G.SKill raptors are so pretty though, hmm might just add another single 2gig and go tri.
 

Divide by zero

Active Member
I'm actually not after 2011 Nam, I was... untill I saw the gaming benchmarks. Nothing over the sandy bridge rigs in gaming (loads in other tests though).
Ivy Bridge has been priced up now though, so will probably go to that before the end of next year all being well.
 

namuk

Distinguished Member
:laugh: Sooo true! I'm waiting til next year though, my G.SKill raptors are so pretty though, hmm might just add another single 2gig and go tri.

yea you do get to attached to your memory odd that:confused::D remember the old DDR corsair set i had ages back they had built in Leds for mem usage they looked class when the system was on:cool:

I'm actually not after 2011 Nam, I was... untill I saw the gaming benchmarks. Nothing over the sandy bridge rigs in gaming (loads in other tests though).
Ivy Bridge has been priced up now though, so will probably go to that before the end of next year all being well.

any decent cpu theses days is good enough for games but the newer ones and 6 cores just do not get stressed as all only really in bf3 and you only need a small overclock as well. doubt we will see anything stressful until 2013 onwards when new consoles are released.
 

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