Author Topic: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?  (Read 12224 times)

chesebert

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Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« on: November 25, 2014, 11:26:19 PM »
My current computer is about 8 yrs old. I have upgrade the computer over the past years and the latest spec is below:

CPU: Q6600 oc to 3400Mhz
Ram: 8GB
Gfx: ATI HD5850

The system is fine for everyday use but is getting very much outclassed by the more recent generations for purposes of blue-ray encoding and photo editing.

I am currently specing replacement parts and would like those to last for the next 8 years if possible with minimum upgrades. However, the total price of the parts are well over 2k, and I am not sure if that amount is justified for non-professional use computer.

CPU: 5960x
RAM: 32GB DDR4
Gfx: Nvidia GTX970
SSD: Samsung 850 pro
Case: Probably something Antec

All other parts will be migrated from the current build.

I am guessing a top of the line Intel quad core based on z97 chip set would cost around 30-50% cheaper. But z97 is EOL with no upgrade path going forward. On the other hand, Intel charge a premium for top of the line chip.

Any ideas on whether the new build should be the best 4 core, the newer 6 core or the top of the line 8 core?


« Last Edit: November 25, 2014, 11:50:12 PM by chesebert »

mveill1

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2014, 03:33:49 AM »
Just a friendly little challenge from me - can I step back and ask why you want to update at all? You state that this is non-professional, so is the photo editing and blu-ray coding a serious hobby? I am guessing it is, just so it's clear why you want to keep up with the machines that have those capabilities.

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2014, 03:44:22 AM »
I wouldn't go to the top of the range because the latest-and-greatest often tend to have problems that have yet to be fixed. I'd go for something that has been around for at least 6 months. I use niche software for my side gig, which means it is very slow and I have always needed a high level machine. Although it is graphics software, it is much slower than  Adobe Photoshop, which I also run. Your specs are a lot higher than I am currently running.

alsoknownasDean

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2014, 03:50:08 AM »
What do you use it for? I'm guessing gaming with the higher-end GPU.

I'd probably aim for mostly midrange stuff, an i5 should be plenty.

Ozstache

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2014, 04:04:53 AM »
Blueray encoding is the only really taxing function you mention worthy of an upgrade, and then only if you do this often enough and is for legit use. In any case, I can't really see the point of getting a GTX970 for the functions you mention; your current video card would probably suffice.

FWIW, I recently upgraded from a similar system to a Z97 based i5 (4 core) 4690K@ 4.5GHz, water cooling, 8G 2400MHz DDR3, GTX770, Sandisk 256GB SSD and it is smoking fast for what I run on it, namely flight simulators and steam games (on sale of course!). Cost me just under A$1200 for the upgrade bits, which probably equates to less than US$1K. Since finishing my Master's last month I've been using it nearly every day for a couple of hours and it is awesome! Maybe something less leading edge, like my setup, would suit you fine too.

Ricky

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2014, 04:09:17 AM »
I think about the only justifiable upgrade you could make is the video card.

Photo editing doesn't warrant that type of upgrade. And I'm not sure why you have a reason to encode so many Blu-Rays unless you're into some type of bootleg business since flash memory is far more efficient.

chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2014, 04:47:19 AM »
I think about the only justifiable upgrade you could make is the video card.

Photo editing doesn't warrant that type of upgrade. And I'm not sure why you have a reason to encode so many Blu-Rays unless you're into some type of bootleg business since flash memory is far more efficient.

I buy blue-ray disks, but I keep a copy (converted) on the computer so I can access all my blue-ray movies on the network.

Also, upgrading the video card at this point would not be helpful as I feel any new card I buy will be bottle necked by the current CPU. I thew the gfx card in there for occasional gaming needs and because I want a new gfx card to go with the new processor :)
« Last Edit: November 26, 2014, 05:02:01 AM by chesebert »

chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2014, 04:57:15 AM »
Just a friendly little challenge from me - can I step back and ask why you want to update at all? You state that this is non-professional, so is the photo editing and blu-ray coding a serious hobby? I am guessing it is, just so it's clear why you want to keep up with the machines that have those capabilities.

Blue-ray ripping and encoding takes considerable amount of time (each taking 8-10 hours or longer on very high quality settings, and should something go wrong, it's another whole day of encoding). I wouldn't say blue-ray encoding is a serious hobby. I tend to buy multiple blue-ray disks at a time once every several months and it takes days/weeks to get through them all, during which time the computer is pretty much useless for other tasks.

Photo editing is a serious hobby and I find LR becomes fairly slow once I start applying multiple layers of brushes and other enhancements to the photo or doing edits on multiple photos at the same time. I would consider downgrading to 6 cores if LR and other photo editing software cannot use all 8 cores.

I also don't want to upgrade again for a long time, and I just feel like Z97 is a dead end at this point.

If the specs are right, I am willing to wait for the price to come down a bit, perhaps in several months.

« Last Edit: November 26, 2014, 05:10:23 AM by chesebert »

alsoknownasDean

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2014, 05:51:15 AM »
Just a friendly little challenge from me - can I step back and ask why you want to update at all? You state that this is non-professional, so is the photo editing and blu-ray coding a serious hobby? I am guessing it is, just so it's clear why you want to keep up with the machines that have those capabilities.

Blue-ray ripping and encoding takes considerable amount of time (each taking 8-10 hours or longer on very high quality settings, and should something go wrong, it's another whole day of encoding). I wouldn't say blue-ray encoding is a serious hobby. I tend to buy multiple blue-ray disks at a time once every several months and it takes days/weeks to get through them all, during which time the computer is pretty much useless for other tasks.

Photo editing is a serious hobby and I find LR becomes fairly slow once I start applying multiple layers of brushes and other enhancements to the photo or doing edits on multiple photos at the same time. I would consider downgrading to 6 cores if LR and other photo editing software cannot use all 8 cores.

I also don't want to upgrade again for a long time, and I just feel like Z97 is a dead end at this point.

If the specs are right, I am willing to wait for the price to come down a bit, perhaps in several months.

1) Does it matter if it's a dead end platform? If you're going to be using the same CPU for eight years, does it matter?

2) Do you need top-end kit? You may find that you can get stuff that does the same job 90% as well for 50% of the cost.

chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2014, 06:22:39 AM »
Just a friendly little challenge from me - can I step back and ask why you want to update at all? You state that this is non-professional, so is the photo editing and blu-ray coding a serious hobby? I am guessing it is, just so it's clear why you want to keep up with the machines that have those capabilities.

Blue-ray ripping and encoding takes considerable amount of time (each taking 8-10 hours or longer on very high quality settings, and should something go wrong, it's another whole day of encoding). I wouldn't say blue-ray encoding is a serious hobby. I tend to buy multiple blue-ray disks at a time once every several months and it takes days/weeks to get through them all, during which time the computer is pretty much useless for other tasks.

Photo editing is a serious hobby and I find LR becomes fairly slow once I start applying multiple layers of brushes and other enhancements to the photo or doing edits on multiple photos at the same time. I would consider downgrading to 6 cores if LR and other photo editing software cannot use all 8 cores.

I also don't want to upgrade again for a long time, and I just feel like Z97 is a dead end at this point.

If the specs are right, I am willing to wait for the price to come down a bit, perhaps in several months.

1) Does it matter if it's a dead end platform? If you're going to be using the same CPU for eight years, does it matter?

2) Do you need top-end kit? You may find that you can get stuff that does the same job 90% as well for 50% of the cost.

Do you have something in mind for (2)?

alsoknownasDean

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2014, 06:29:47 AM »
Just a friendly little challenge from me - can I step back and ask why you want to update at all? You state that this is non-professional, so is the photo editing and blu-ray coding a serious hobby? I am guessing it is, just so it's clear why you want to keep up with the machines that have those capabilities.

Blue-ray ripping and encoding takes considerable amount of time (each taking 8-10 hours or longer on very high quality settings, and should something go wrong, it's another whole day of encoding). I wouldn't say blue-ray encoding is a serious hobby. I tend to buy multiple blue-ray disks at a time once every several months and it takes days/weeks to get through them all, during which time the computer is pretty much useless for other tasks.

Photo editing is a serious hobby and I find LR becomes fairly slow once I start applying multiple layers of brushes and other enhancements to the photo or doing edits on multiple photos at the same time. I would consider downgrading to 6 cores if LR and other photo editing software cannot use all 8 cores.

I also don't want to upgrade again for a long time, and I just feel like Z97 is a dead end at this point.

If the specs are right, I am willing to wait for the price to come down a bit, perhaps in several months.

1) Does it matter if it's a dead end platform? If you're going to be using the same CPU for eight years, does it matter?

2) Do you need top-end kit? You may find that you can get stuff that does the same job 90% as well for 50% of the cost.

Do you have something in mind for (2)?

I haven't really looked into it for a while, but surely there's a decent i5 in the $2-300 range rather than dropping over a grand on a 5960x?

I can't really help with video cards, last time I built a PC was back when Core 2 Duos were the bee's knees.

neo von retorch

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2014, 08:23:31 AM »
This reminds me of MMMs article about being "behind the wave." If you buy the latest, you might spend $2000 on a computer. If you buy last year's latest, you might spend $750. Since your main issue is "tying up the computer" for blu-ray, why not build a much more middle-of-the-road system and leave one system dedicated to blu-ray encoding?

Anyway, I'm actually pretty happy with myself for FINALLY not giving into upgrade temptation. My computer is a Phenom II X4 and I just finally went from 4GB to 8GB this week, for the cost of $43.98. A while back I put a Samsung 840 Pro in there. The SSD is a nice upgrade, and with Samsung cloning software (or Macrium Reflect Free for other brands) you can do it without changing a single other thing on your system.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2014, 11:48:27 AM by neogodless »

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #12 on: November 26, 2014, 09:29:27 AM »
As a tech enthusiast, I would say hold onto your current system.  My i5-2500K in my desktop isn't much faster than what you have, and my GF does outrageously complex photo editing on it (she's a photographer) with no issues at all.  x264 encoding (which I hope is what you're using) can be prioritized so that the computer isn't "useless" while encoding.  I've done x264 encoding on far slower machines in the past (not on my current 3-years-old build) and at your rate of BD-ripping, that shouldn't be a factor.  You can queue stuff up too so that the computer does all the work in the background at low priority so that it doesn't matter how long it takes.

I would bump the RAM up to the max your board can do (assuming you're not maxed at 8GB) and call it a day.  Get an SSD if you don't have one and feel like it.  Revisit in three years.

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #13 on: November 26, 2014, 10:15:36 AM »


CPU: Q6600 oc to 3400Mhz
Ram: 8GB
Gfx: ATI HD5850


CPU: 5960x
RAM: 32GB DDR4
Gfx: Nvidia GTX970
SSD: Samsung 850 pro
Case: Probably something Antec

First, let us all remember that even Mr. Money Mustache himself splurges on things from time to time (espresso machine, for example).  The key here is not to do so randomly or thoughtlessly.  With that in mind, I'm a Sys Admin, and I'm going to go under the assumption that you've given this thought and it's an upgrade you really, actually, truly want to make.  If you haven't given it serious thought, then keep on thinking before you make a decision.

First, the CPU.  The nice thing is, you're going to save electricity moving away from the Q series.  I used to own a Q9550 (bought it used), and my electric bill showed it.  I had to make sure to power the thing off as soon as I was done, because leaving it on would cost me.

But the 5960x, that's an i7 processor that alone will set you back $1000.  I can't imagine having that much parallel workflow that you can actually get the bang out of one-thousand bucks.  I'm running a Intel Core i7-4790, you could get the unlocked 'k' version of this for $300.  I edit photos, videos, compile some light code, run a virtual machine 24/7, and do some heavy-duty gaming (as well as launch Kerbals into space) with that CPU.  So if you're looking to be realistic, I think that's maybe a better place to start.  But you can be the judge, it's your money.  Just be wise with it.

GTX970 - I don't know much about specific video cards on the market today.  Instead, I'll references you over to Tom's Hardware Guide, where they have an updated "Best Video Cards for the Money" article specific to November. 

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-card-review,3107-8.html

SSD - Do what you will here, these are coming down in price and they do offer a huge performance increase for the money. 

Case - Can you just use the current case? 

RAM - 32GB?  That's a lot.  I have 32GB in my system because my company gave me 32GB to use.  Before, I had 8GB and 16GB.  32 is overkill for most people.  Are you going to be running a ton of VMs with each assigned 8GB or something? 

Also, you didn't mention power supply.  You'll probably need a new one.

Just my two cents on the hardware specifics, since everyone else will likely talk finances with you.  And don't ignore them either, it's a valid point.  You've laid out the basics for a $2000 machine here.  If you can justify it, then that's your business.  Just remember, people ALSO justify taking out a 24.55% APR loan on a $29,995 Ford Mustang.  They ALSO justify renting a couch from Rent a Center at $29.85 per week. 

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #14 on: November 26, 2014, 10:39:34 AM »
It's been a while since I've done video editing and encoding, but it comes down to the exact program you're using. Is it:

1. Multithreaded? How well? You can test this by disabling cores in the BIOS and seeing how well it scales across 2 or more cores versus a single core. Some programs are really well coded, others not so much.

2. Is it GPUcompute enabled? If so, for which vendor? Not sure if this is still the case with current gen, but it used to be some programs were very highly optimized for either AMD or Nvidia, usually Nvidia. If so, the GPU is going to be light years faster than even the top flight CPU.

The other solution is to stop spending so much money on Blurays ;) If you're buying that many movies that 1 day of encoding per disc takes "so much time" I'd suggest reevaluating your spending priorities.

For gaming, you'd see a benefit to modernizing the CPU to a semi-recent quad core of Sandry Bridge or newer gen. You could upgrade the GPU as well, but what benefit you see really comes down to what games you're running. I'm a huge fan of very graphically intense mods for screenarchery (think Dead End Thrills if you're familiar with the site) so when I last upgraded, I went top flight single GPU as the micro stutter of multi-GPU set ups was still a huge issue then. Not sure if they've ever fixed that.

Ozstache

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #15 on: November 26, 2014, 03:12:57 PM »
2) Do you need top-end kit? You may find that you can get stuff that does the same job 90% as well for 50% of the cost.

Do you have something in mind for (2)?

Did you not see my post above where I describe my new system that meets this requirement?

chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2014, 04:42:45 AM »
OP here. Thanks all for the suggestions. I have decided to postpone the upgrade for now. Given my usage pattern, I think I will need at least a 6 core part (5820k or better). Although the price of 5820k is reasonable, x99 mobo and fast DDR4 still have quite a bit of that top-of-the-line premium that need to get trimmed.

In the mean time, I have decided to use some of my elbow grease and lap that old Q6600 of mine. After half an hour of lapping the IHS and water block, I was able to get the core up to 3.8ghz and another 10% or so on the RAM. All in all, about 15% increase in performance from where I was before. I will however still get that SSD, which will really help the photo processing work and can be migrated to the new machine when I finally put that together sometime next year (at hopefully a more reasonable price).   

Guses

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2014, 05:51:18 AM »
Another suggestion here:

Instead of spending 1.5-2K every 8 year, why don't you look at getting something more mid range and upgrading more often, as needed?

Looking on craigslist, there are a bunch of systems out there that outperform yours for 200-300$. If you sell your old hardware, your out of pocket will be 100-200$.

An old generation Core i7 920-940 probably smokes your Q6600, consumes less power and can be had for the price range quoted....

chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2014, 06:44:53 AM »
I don't live in the states anymore, so no convenient way for me to sell and buy new/used. My old routine was to sell my old stuff on forums and buy BF deals or from forum members - it was a few hundred every few years and life was good. Part of the cost of not living in the states.

Given that my system is so old that the resale value (other than 5850 for the mining crowd) is probably crappy even on ebay.

I ran some benches and I think my system is about at i5 2500 stock level. I think I can get another 8-10 months out of it.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2014, 06:50:31 AM by chesebert »

BlueMR2

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2014, 12:27:47 PM »
It's really hard to multi-thread *most* applications.  There are some exceptions (graphics and video) that will thread well, but even in those cases it's normally just the long running batch processes that will thread (like things you leave running overnight).  For most people, 4 core is 1-2 cores more than they need.  For home users who complain about slow computers I will recommend a current generation chip with the highest clock speed (which typically is the lowest core count, you generally can't have both due to heat dissipation issues).  This gets you the best user experience while you're actually AT the machine's controls, and the long running processes just run longer overnight...  :-)

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2014, 04:38:08 PM »
I think your entire premise is a bit off. You want a computer that will still be decent in performance 8 years from now. Even if you got the top of the line parts today, that's not going to happen.

So from that perspective, just get what gives you the best bang for the buck. Which in today's market, is a 4 core, and hyperthreaded if you run applications that can be threaded (but not necessarily if it has been implemented today. You're concerned about 8 years from now). Video encoding is certainly one such application.

It's really hard to multi-thread *most* applications.  There are some exceptions (graphics and video) that will thread well, but even in those cases it's normally just the long running batch processes that will thread (like things you leave running overnight).  For most people, 4 core is 1-2 cores more than they need.  For home users who complain about slow computers I will recommend a current generation chip with the highest clock speed (which typically is the lowest core count, you generally can't have both due to heat dissipation issues).  This gets you the best user experience while you're actually AT the machine's controls, and the long running processes just run longer overnight...  :-)
But this is exactly why it's important to know what kind of applications the OP runs. Yes, it's true that most people don't need a quad core. But how do we know cheesebert is one of most people? (And in fact, cheesebert isn't, as cheesebert wants to run video encoding).

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #21 on: November 30, 2014, 06:59:20 PM »
Get below top of the line. There is no need to pay that price premium. You could spend less than a grand and still get a very nice bump from what you have now. Upgrade again a few years down the road, that's your best bet long term, if you even need to again. Over the years I've found that to be the best option. mobo/processor/ram every few years. why the new case?

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #22 on: December 04, 2014, 02:04:34 PM »
Upgrading to the top end and holding for 8 years is less efficient money and power-wise than getting a tier down every 3-4 years.

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #23 on: December 04, 2014, 03:44:14 PM »
Electrical and computer engineer here. Worked for intel on server chips. Own a 4960x (got for free - $1000 retail) and around $2k on the rest of the PC...

Unlike daily who usually shows up, my expertise is on the design side of things, not the IT side.

So, now that we're past the qualifications and caveats, here is my opinion:

The major emphasis in the past couple years on the PC side, which will likely continue for at least the next several years, is performance/watt not raw performance. This means that actual IPC might increase 5%, and clock speed 5%, giving a 5-10% single-threaded performance increase every year. On the other hand, the performance/watt goes up, like, 25% or more - depending on the configuration and use case, as much as 50%. This means you can buy roughly the same laptop with 3 more hours of battery life, or one that weighs less and charges faster.

But if you have a PC, your electricity costs are fairly low and you don't care as much about perf/watt, certainly not to the point where you can expect to upgrade 3 years from now. As such, I advocate spending the extra 20% to make your system last an extra two years. It is likely you'll keep your PC for 5 years or more. The price difference in CPU to enable this is about $50-100, depending on what you buy. You can usually get away with an integrated GPU (unless you want an i7 extreme - which doesn't have an iGPU) to save on cost. RAM can always be upgraded later, as can your storage.

In my opinion, the best bang for buck for the next 5 years is an i7 - like the i7 4790k - with a smallish SSD, a large HDD, and 16GB of RAM. Unless you game, stick with no external GPU (one can always be added later.) A normal cooling system (cooler master hyper 212 evo), a decent power supply (semi-modular, 600W), a non-flashy case (I like Corsair), and your system is built for around $800. It is upgradeable with GPU and more RAM and more storage later. It will last in its present configuration for 5 years at least, likely significantly more.

So with due respect, reb, I disagree: your logic was correct in the past, but it is no longer. Performance has mostly peaked for consumer computers, as most of your available threads (likely 6/8) will be idle 99% of the time even during heavy use, at least until software better takes advantage of multiple logical cores. I'd be comfortable saying that to make a 4-year-computer last eight will cost maybe 20% more, with another 10% at the 4-year-mark to just add more memory or faster storage.

You may in the future want a 4k monitor to make your eyes happier, which at high framerates will probably mean a $100 gpu or so. But unless you game, not today.

(Caveat: if your video encoding software is good at actually using GPU performance, then you might want one. I got one just for GPGPU usage.)

Notes: yada yada, my opinions don't represent anything my employer has to say, and I only speak to my general knowledge of computing trends and public data, and not internal details of things like roadmaps. Grain of salt. And so on.

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #24 on: December 05, 2014, 09:40:35 AM »
I had a similar PC as you. Pre-mustachianism, I built a gaming PC 6 years ago, Phenom 9850, GTX595, 8gb ram, 600 watt psu, 8 fans on the case, first blue ray player, etc. It was incredible at the time, noisy as none other, and burnt a lot of electricity... you could feel the heat coming off. The PSU burned out last year, so I replaced that, and last month the GPU died. I could keep replacing parts, but it's not worth it anymore.

Challenge your assumptions that you need to buy blue rays, or that you need to rip them all to terabytes of storage. 25$ blue rays add up fast, that's 3 months of streaming netflix for one 2hr video! You don't need a top of the line PC to edit photos... Make a list of everything you want to use this for, & check if there are cheaper ways to do what you want to do. If you take ripping bluerays off your list, you could drop your PC requirements/price a lot!

Here's what I looked for in my purchase, and why:
The markup from i3 to i7 is absurd, it would have added another 300$ to my total price. You don't need anything greater than i5.
15 watt CPU's are incredible for power savings. Going from 600 watt PSU to 35 watt PSU saves $, I approximated full ROI of purchase price in a few years.
SSD is huge. My old PC was bottle-necked with the hard drive. This i3 build has better overall performance even though the CPU is a little slower.
I personally came to the conclusion that blue rays are a complete waste of $, so the new PC has no disc drive. I stream anything I can find for free. Hulu is great for desktop users. You don't have to pay subscription to use it. Sure selection is a little lower, but it's free. There are many other sources of streaming for cheap.

I ended up getting a gigabyte mini-pc, i3 4010U (15 watts), Crucial 240 gb SSD, Crucial 8gb ram, 4xUSB3.0 ports, Intel 802.11AC/BT4.0. Total was ~500$. It's a tiny box mounted on the wall behind my monitors, no more giant tower under the desk. It is incredibly quiet with one small fan running. Cables are streamlined, fans aren't caked full of dirt, etc. My ideas of what I need have changed a lot since reading this forum.

DK

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #25 on: December 06, 2014, 10:08:55 AM »
For an example, here's the one I built about a year ago for a little over $500. Still very fast. I can also run a 27in and 19in monitor with just the on processor graphics, they have made huge leaps in the later gen chips where they compare to having an actual graphics card. This has a 6.6 WEI, only because of using the on processor graphics, otherwise it be a 7.6.

Gigabyte H87 LGA 1150
Intel Core i5-4570 Quad-Core Desktop Processor 3.2 GHZ 6MB
Samsung Electronics 840 EVO-Series 120GB
Corsair Vengeance Blue 8 GB (2X4 GB) PC3-12800 1600mHz DDR3
Antec VP-450 450 Watt

DK

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #26 on: December 06, 2014, 04:45:19 PM »

In my opinion, the best bang for buck for the next 5 years is an i7 - like the i7 4790k - with a smallish SSD, a large HDD, and 16GB of RAM. Unless you game, stick with no external GPU (one can always be added later.) A normal cooling system (cooler master hyper 212 evo), a decent power supply (semi-modular, 600W), a non-flashy case (I like Corsair), and your system is built for around $800. It is upgradeable with GPU and more RAM and more storage later. It will last in its present configuration for 5 years at least, likely significantly more.

^^^^^^^this. if i were planning to build an over the top system, that would last a long time and do virtually anything thrown at it, pretty much exactly what i would put in it.

BlueMR2

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #27 on: December 07, 2014, 11:52:49 AM »
I think your entire premise is a bit off. You want a computer that will still be decent in performance 8 years from now. Even if you got the top of the line parts today, that's not going to happen.

I'd have to disagree with that, seeing as I'm using a computer I built in 2003 as my main machine.  It was made with near top tier components, just adding RAM, swapping video cards and hard drives over the years.  A few months ago I was playing full screen online flight combat games at 30fps+.  Today's technological improvements seem to have actually slowed down (or at perhaps the demands of software have?).  Friends buying bargain replacement computers every 2-3 years are easily surpassing that mark without complaints now.  We may be on a plateau.

Dodge

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #28 on: December 07, 2014, 12:14:00 PM »
I tend to buy multiple blue-ray disks at a time once every several months and it takes days/weeks to get through them all, during which time the computer is pretty much useless for other tasks.

I vote for keeping your current computer.  I've done a lot of encoding over the years, just set the priority of the process in Task Manager to the lowest setting, and you can use the computer just fine.  Sure it will take longer to encode, but you only do this one every few months, and it's running overnight anyway.  I don't think speeding up this process will increase your quality of life at all.

johnny847

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #29 on: December 07, 2014, 03:24:30 PM »
I think your entire premise is a bit off. You want a computer that will still be decent in performance 8 years from now. Even if you got the top of the line parts today, that's not going to happen.

I'd have to disagree with that, seeing as I'm using a computer I built in 2003 as my main machine.  It was made with near top tier components, just adding RAM, swapping video cards and hard drives over the years.  A few months ago I was playing full screen online flight combat games at 30fps+.  Today's technological improvements seem to have actually slowed down (or at perhaps the demands of software have?).  Friends buying bargain replacement computers every 2-3 years are easily surpassing that mark without complaints now.  We may be on a plateau.
I do not consider 30fps+ decent performance. Also, you're saying you added and swapped out parts over the years. Not a fair comparison.
And you're saying that bargain basement computers are still up to snuff 2-3 years later. That's a different time horizon than 8 years.

notquitefrugal

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #30 on: December 07, 2014, 06:46:06 PM »
16 GB of RAM, maybe, but 32 GB is insane unless you're doing some ultra high end video editing... I upgraded my iMac to 16 GB and it is overkill. I've never seen the amount in use exceed 8 GB on the activity monitor.

chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #31 on: December 10, 2014, 11:16:34 PM »

In my opinion, the best bang for buck for the next 5 years is an i7 - like the i7 4790k - with a smallish SSD, a large HDD, and 16GB of RAM. Unless you game, stick with no external GPU (one can always be added later.) A normal cooling system (cooler master hyper 212 evo), a decent power supply (semi-modular, 600W), a non-flashy case (I like Corsair), and your system is built for around $800. It is upgradeable with GPU and more RAM and more storage later. It will last in its present configuration for 5 years at least, likely significantly more.

^^^^^^^this. if i were planning to build an over the top system, that would last a long time and do virtually anything thrown at it, pretty much exactly what i would put in it.

Came to my senses on the rig and went with the following parts:

i7 4790k
Z97 board
16GB RAM
512GB SSD
r9 290 (not really necessary but should last me for a long time)
Corsair H100i
Antec p280 case

total cost $1400 ($100 more than newegg prices, but I don't live in the states...)

Will reuse all HDs from old machine, power supply, optical drives, fans and other misc things.

Old machine will be re-purposed (with a cheaper PSU) for HTPC/NAS 

DK

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #32 on: December 11, 2014, 06:39:38 AM »
nice! that thing should fly. Samsung SSD?

I probably would have saw how the onprocessor GPU worked before buying a card, but at least you didn't spend what you did on only a CPU.

gimp

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #33 on: December 11, 2014, 10:44:46 AM »
Seems like a solid choice. Fairly similar to mine (lesser GPU, the 280; more RAM; bigger CPU, h110 instead of h100i). I expect mine to last long enough that I need to replace the psu and/or mobo due to capacitor aging.

I expect chesebert got the r9 for video/photo/etc editing (as well as some programs' gpgpu capability), or running multiple monitors or just very large resolution monitors. 4K is absolutely the way of the future, which means anyone who gets more efficiency from it will have two sitting side-by-side... as much as I love intel integrated graphics, I'd want a real gpu for that rig.

Scandium

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #34 on: December 11, 2014, 12:27:13 PM »
Glad you came to your sense, but still a bit overkill IMO.
Why the i7 over an i5? Just for hyper-threading? I have an i7 and have seen jack all in terms of performance when I ran benchmarks with HT on/off. Save $100 and get an i5 4690k. OC can make up the clock speed difference.
I don't see much difference here worth worrying about:
http://anandtech.com/bench/product/1261?vs=1260

A $100 water cooler?! That performs hardly any better than a $30 air cooler (hyper 212 mentioned earlier)? Save the money.

I have 32GB RAM and 6 cores at work and it's a complete waste, nothing I do (or that you will do) take advantage of it.

I think a smaller SSD and a spinning disk is cheaper and better but whatever. About the same price.

This should be around $700, plus the GPU and case. This is more or less the upgrade I plan myself soon, on a 6 year old PC.

ps: I'd tell you to stop wasting money on blurays and use netflix instead but that's another discussion..

skunkfunk

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #35 on: December 11, 2014, 12:54:47 PM »
Top of the line stuff you're looking at is a waste, man. You can churn through mid-high-grade stuff every few years far cheaper than it would be to buy top-of-the-line and nurse it along for twice that long, IMO.

chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #36 on: December 11, 2014, 11:53:48 PM »
Seems like a solid choice. Fairly similar to mine (lesser GPU, the 280; more RAM; bigger CPU, h110 instead of h100i). I expect mine to last long enough that I need to replace the psu and/or mobo due to capacitor aging.

I expect chesebert got the r9 for video/photo/etc editing (as well as some programs' gpgpu capability), or running multiple monitors or just very large resolution monitors. 4K is absolutely the way of the future, which means anyone who gets more efficiency from it will have two sitting side-by-side... as much as I love intel integrated graphics, I'd want a real gpu for that rig.

I got the r9 290 after I saw the new omega driver, which has a ton of goodies like virtual super resolution and 5K support, as well as better video rendering performance. Where I am at r9 290 is the same price as r9 285, and is only $40 more than r9 280. GTX 970 on the other hand costs $140 more, which didn't make much sense. I believe r9 290 is the best value based on my local market prices.

I don't think water cooling will be that important for me at this point given I only want to do mild overclock. However, once we are 5-7 years out and the machine is showing its age, I will probably lap the CPU and go for more extreme OC. I think the difference of 5-10C will be a big deal.


chesebert

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #37 on: December 12, 2014, 12:03:22 AM »
Samsung costs too much where I live; Crucial is more reasonable priced and is fast enough for what I do (I have been reading bunch of benchmarks for Lightroom and I think Crucial is just as fast in that application).

I would use my ancient HD5850 (which is a very good card once OC to 7850 speed) before I touch the onboard graphics....

nice! that thing should fly. Samsung SSD?

I probably would have saw how the onprocessor GPU worked before buying a card, but at least you didn't spend what you did on only a CPU.

Jack

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #38 on: December 12, 2014, 09:37:04 AM »
Glad you came to your sense, but still a bit overkill IMO.
Why the i7 over an i5? Just for hyper-threading? I have an i7 and have seen jack all in terms of performance when I ran benchmarks with HT on/off. Save $100 and get an i5 4690k. OC can make up the clock speed difference.

Even an i5 is overkill compared to an 8-core AMD FX chip, especially for embarrassingly-parallel things like video encoding!

The only things Intel chips are better at than AMD chips are single-threaded performance (and even then, AMD chips are just as good on a per-dollar basis; Intel just has a higher high-end) and performance per watt.

Hell, my computer (which I use for things like gaming) is just a 4-core Phenom II or something and its CPU is more than enough. In fact, the only things I have even a slight desire to upgrade are the RAM (from 8 GB to 16), the video card, and the monitor (to 4k).

FarmerPete

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #39 on: December 12, 2014, 09:44:22 AM »
Two words of advice from someone who seems to have a similar setup as you.  First, I've been converting as much of my discs to Vudu as possible.  Vudu has a "Disc-to-Digital" service that you can do from your home.  All you need is a computer, their software, a Vudu account, and a DVD drive or Bluray drive if you want to convert Blurays.  It takes about 1 minute per disc.  If compatible, you can get a digital copy of the movie for very cheap.  It's $2 to convert a DVD to Vudu as an SD copy of the movie or a Blu-Ray as HDX copy.  If you have a DVD, you can pay $5 to upgrade it to HDX.  If you do 10 discs or more at once, you get 50% off the entire order.  In other words, you can get a digital copy of a Blu-Ray for $1.  Why pay $1 when you can "rip" the BluRay for free?  Because it's not free.  I've personally got a 6TB RAID array, and even compressed, a Blu-Ray takes 6-15GB of storage.  The raw cost of the storage, the electricity to run it, and the mental stress that it entails is worth paying $1 a movie for.  I took some of my old DVDs and paid the $2.50 to upgrade them to HDX.  Things like the LOTR Extended discs.  The nice part about Vudu is that it allows you to easily stream and download movies on to your mobile devices.  That means that instead of having to run a DVDFab/Handbrake job to convert that 10GB movie into a small size for your phone, you can just open your Vudu app, go to your library, and click "Download".  600-1000 meg download later, you've got the entire movie on your phone and ready to view on a plane/car/train/boat/WiFi-Free-Zone.  If you HATE Vudu because Walmart is the devil, Vudu is a UltraViolet provider, so all of your movies are accessible through any UV partners (Flixster).

My second word of advice is please don't use your old PC as a HTPC.  Unless you get your power included in your rent, keep it off for 23 hrs a day, or have abundant solar power, you'll be MUCH better off getting a low power device.  Buy or borrow a kill-o-watt device and see what your old rig is using up.  I used to leave my gaming PC on 24/7.  I hooked up my kill-o-watt to it and saw that it was drawing 250 watts at idle.  That equates to $0.72 a day and $263 a year for IDLE use.  Modern processors are SOOO much more efficient.  I have an i3-2100 based system as my HTPC.  That HTPC has 4GB of ram, a 128gb SSD, TV Tuner, Bluray drive, and a 1TB WD Green HD.  I know it idles at under 50 watts.  That's a much more reasonable $53 a year.  It pulls double duty as my DVR for OTA recording and it does my Bluray/DVD ripping when I can't convert to Vudu.  For the record, using DVDFab, it can do a Bluray rip in 4-6 hours.  Perhaps you do a more intensive format than me, but it really doesn't take long to do one with the i3 processor.  The SSD really helped performance more than anything.  I use the 1TB for my DVR storage and I dump my rips there before transferring them to my server. 

A HTPC doesn't need much power.  Depending on what you want to use it for, I've heard a lot of good things about using a RaspberryPi as a HTPC.  If I really wanted a Windows PC, I would go with something like this from Lenovo http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/desktops/lenovo/q-series/q190/?redir=y&redirsrc=4  That's $200 for a new system, it's tiny, and you'll never get a DIY desktop anywhere close to that low power draw.  Only downsides is no-optical and no way to add a TV tuner.  Since you are digitizing all your movies, the lack of a disc drive should be a non-issue.  For computers without optical drives, I tend to just share an optical drive over the network.  That works great for my wife's laptop.  Otherwise, an external USB DVD drive can be had for cheap.  For the TV tuner, if that's a necessary item, you can get the HD Homerun which is a networked tuner.  I've heard great things about it.

johnny847

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #40 on: December 12, 2014, 10:06:28 AM »
The only things Intel chips are better at than AMD chips are single-threaded performance (and even then, AMD chips are just as good on a per-dollar basis; Intel just has a higher high-end) and performance per watt.
Emphasis mine. Considering the OP is planning to try to keep the PC for as long as possible, it's quite possible that the cost savings from better energy efficiency can surpass the initial cost.

FarmerPete

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #41 on: December 12, 2014, 10:25:07 AM »
I've been looking at replacing my performance PC for some time now.  This discussion has me wondering what I should do.  Current system:

Intel i7-920 (First gen i7)
Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD3R LGA 1366 Motherboard
Sapphire Toxic Radeon HD 4870 512MB PCI-Express 2.0 x16
G.Skill 6GB Triple Channel memory (2GBx3) DDR3 1333
7200 RPM 256GB Hard Drive

Until reading this, I had planned on going with an i7 processor and the best bang for buck graphics card in the $150-200ish range.  Really though, I don't game that much.  I could probably get away with just replacing my graphics card and maybe an SSD.  Total cost $300 or less.  The only real downside is that my system still will draw an ungodly amount of power.  Oh well.  :-)

Scandium

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #42 on: December 12, 2014, 10:52:06 AM »
I've been looking at replacing my performance PC for some time now.  This discussion has me wondering what I should do.  Current system:

Intel i7-920 (First gen i7)
Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD3R LGA 1366 Motherboard
Sapphire Toxic Radeon HD 4870 512MB PCI-Express 2.0 x16
G.Skill 6GB Triple Channel memory (2GBx3) DDR3 1333
7200 RPM 256GB Hard Drive

Until reading this, I had planned on going with an i7 processor and the best bang for buck graphics card in the $150-200ish range.  Really though, I don't game that much.  I could probably get away with just replacing my graphics card and maybe an SSD.  Total cost $300 or less.  The only real downside is that my system still will draw an ungodly amount of power.  Oh well.  :-)

Ahoy fellow 920 owner! Like you I have some upgrade lust I've successfully put of for a few years. I keep pricing out a new CPU upgrade, but it usually doesn't seem worth it. The 920 just feels good enough still. Maybe once broadwell is out next year is the plan now.. There appears to be a decent speed improvement going to haswell:
http://anandtech.com/bench/product/47?vs=1261
I have upgraded the GPU (6950) and an SSD. That really makes the most difference. Can get an SSD for under $100 now! Even the slowest one will be miles better than any HDD.

My reason to upgrade is mainly to get something quieter and less power hungry. I plan to make a near-silent system. Fractal case, low power CPU and something like a 750ti GPU. Like you I don't game much, and usually older stuff anyway (TF2, Civ4).

Jack

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #43 on: December 12, 2014, 10:57:09 AM »
The only things Intel chips are better at than AMD chips are single-threaded performance (and even then, AMD chips are just as good on a per-dollar basis; Intel just has a higher high-end) and performance per watt.
Emphasis mine. Considering the OP is planning to try to keep the PC for as long as possible, it's quite possible that the cost savings from better energy efficiency can surpass the initial cost.

Nope. He was talking about getting an Intel i7-5960X ($1050 and 140W TDP), whereas my suggestion is something more along the lines of an AMD FX 8320E ($150 and 95W TDP) or even an AMD FX 9370E ($200 and 95W TDP). I don't care how damn efficient that Intel chip is (at idle, since it draws more power than the AMD does under load), the AMD chip isn't going to use an extra EIGHT HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS of electricity!*

Even a top-of-the-line AMD FX 9590, with a ridiculous 220W TDP, doesn't cost nearly enough ($245) for the i7 to break even.

For the price of an i7-5960X, you could buy and upgrade AMD chips four times!

High-end Intel chips are so mindbogglingly expensive compared to AMDs that you either (A) need to have some very specific need to run a particular pathologically-unparallelizable algorithm as blazingly fast as possible or (B) need to be completely insane to even begin to consider one.

(*I did the math: For that to happen, the AMD chip would have to be drawing 86 more watts than the Intel chip every second of every day for the entire 8 year period, assuming 14.1 cents per kWh which was the national average in September 2014.)

(Note: all prices are from NewEgg)
« Last Edit: December 12, 2014, 11:39:16 AM by Jack »

gimp

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #44 on: December 12, 2014, 11:28:45 AM »
Ask ten people, get eleven opinions.

Intel vs AMD arguments never get old, and are as stupid as they always were. Buy AMD for cost. If you want to spend money, buy Intel. Or, better yet, if you want cheap, just get an atom - they're quite nice these days, and you might find one for like $40, except they're not socketed.

The 4960x or 5960x is a halo product. It is not intended to be bought in quantity. It costs a thousand bucks because it can. On employee discount, they were around $440. (The 4770k/4790k are around $180.) There's no point arguing about its specs or cost because it's so far outside the normal conversation that the arguments are irrelevant; you buy it because you have legitimate need for a workstation or because you have cash to burn (or if you get it for free like I did.) On the other hand, the lowest-end i7 extreme is just for cheap workstations with no on-die graphics and is a legitimate competitor to the highest i7 (4790k today).

It'd be like talking about how silly it is to buy, I don't know, a Bugatti. Nobody buys it because it's a reasonable thing to buy. It exists as a halo product. You buy it because you can.

If you want to talk tech, though, Intel's 140W TDP is not the same as AMD's - Intel's chips are far better at clock gating and power gating to reduce average power consumption. You would have to compare total power consumption, per chip, per task/benchmark, and you'd also have to figure out the power consumption of the rest of the system to compensate (mobo + everything on it). TDP is nearly meaningless these days, TDP is the number which the board needs to handle, the PSU needs to supply, and the cooler has to cool over long periods. Over short periods, TDP can be massively exceeded. TDP is what happens when you launch a task to fill up the CPU and leave it for an hour. This is why most chip vendors - TI, Samsung, Qualcomm, etc - don't publish TDPs as such; they publish spreadsheets with a bunch of variables where you can figure out approximate TDPs depending on usage scenarios.

PS, broadwell is not socketed really. So you're not going to see socketed broadwell. Broadwell is also a clusterfuck because they gave the design to the Bangalore team. Quite a few broadwell products are shipping but they are of course all soldered to laptop/tablet/convertible motherboards. Broadwell will mostly skip the desktop. You're thinking of Skylake which will be socketed.

Oh, and the old single- versus multi-threaded performance argument. One, it's fairly silly to argue that AMD has better multi-threaded performance. Since it's a question of specs, you can see pretty easily... 8 cores is as much of a misnomer as thinking that 4 hyperthreaded cores are really 8 cores; both share resources. Two, cores are also not apples-to-oranges comparisons, despite Nvidia's claims to the contrary - an 8-bit ALU is not a core - and you'd have to study the architecture to figure out what's better for what. We're talking differences in out-of-order engines and buffers, how many ports it has, how wide each core is, what instructions it enables and what ones you're likely to use, how much cache is available, and so on... and so on... Three, most of your programs are single-threaded, will remain single-threaded, and bottlenecks are single-threaded performance. Both AMD and Intel can turbo cores briefly to help with this. They can do fun stuff like turbo a single core, then when it heats up transfer the entire process to another core. Of course, memory access then often becomes the real bottleneck: how fast can they get and push data? That's why overclocking like crazy is usually pointless; your chip runs faster but it still takes the same amount of time to get data from main memory so you're sitting there with your thumb up your ass burning power.

TL;DR: Chip design guy tells you chip design is super complicated and can't be summarized with platitudes when hard-to-understand specs change every year.

FarmerPete, your current rig is pretty decent as is. Where are you being held back? That's the main question. I'd probably upgrade RAM first. My system is constantly using 10+ gigs and having a lot helps.

FarmerPete

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #45 on: December 12, 2014, 11:57:47 AM »
FarmerPete, your current rig is pretty decent as is. Where are you being held back? That's the main question. I'd probably upgrade RAM first. My system is constantly using 10+ gigs and having a lot helps.

Certainly HD is an issue.  SSD would fix that.  The only downside of my current system is that it only has SATA 3GB ports.  I guess I could get a PCIe SATA board if the performance wasn't where I wanted it.  Video card is also potentially an issue.  I'm wanting to play Dragon Age 3 at some point, and my card is THE minimum specs for the game.  I suppose I could see how it plays, but I'm skeptical it will be good.  Both issues can be remediated without an entire new system.  The only other downside is power usage.

I suppose I could get a cheaper video card than I had thought like the GeForce GTX 750 1GB for $80 after MIR right now.  I could then get a good SSD.  The idea being that I keep on using my current computer 1-2 more years.  Downside of that is that I may need to ditch the video card when I do a replacement later, but I should be able to reuse the SSD.  Looking at "http://gpuboss.com/gpus/Radeon-HD-4870-vs-GeForce-GTX-750"  That might be a decent enough GPU upgrade.  Of course, I could always get the game and see how it plays on my current GPU before spending large amounts of money on upgrades...

Scandium

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #46 on: December 12, 2014, 01:15:45 PM »
FarmerPete, your current rig is pretty decent as is. Where are you being held back? That's the main question. I'd probably upgrade RAM first. My system is constantly using 10+ gigs and having a lot helps.

Certainly HD is an issue.  SSD would fix that.  The only downside of my current system is that it only has SATA 3GB ports.  I guess I could get a PCIe SATA board if the performance wasn't where I wanted it.  Video card is also potentially an issue.  I'm wanting to play Dragon Age 3 at some point, and my card is THE minimum specs for the game.  I suppose I could see how it plays, but I'm skeptical it will be good.  Both issues can be remediated without an entire new system.  The only other downside is power usage.

I suppose I could get a cheaper video card than I had thought like the GeForce GTX 750 1GB for $80 after MIR right now.  I could then get a good SSD.  The idea being that I keep on using my current computer 1-2 more years.  Downside of that is that I may need to ditch the video card when I do a replacement later, but I should be able to reuse the SSD.  Looking at "http://gpuboss.com/gpus/Radeon-HD-4870-vs-GeForce-GTX-750"  That might be a decent enough GPU upgrade.  Of course, I could always get the game and see how it plays on my current GPU before spending large amounts of money on upgrades...

Is 3GB/s ports really a problem? I was under the impression that this just made a difference to chart-scrutinizing lunatics. I put an SSD in my LGA 1377 mobo with only 3Gb/s ports and it seemed plenty fast.. It's random access, not sustained read/write that make SSD systems faster.

johnny847

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Re: Computer Questions :4, 6 or 8 cores for the next 8 years?
« Reply #47 on: December 13, 2014, 08:49:08 AM »
The only things Intel chips are better at than AMD chips are single-threaded performance (and even then, AMD chips are just as good on a per-dollar basis; Intel just has a higher high-end) and performance per watt.
Emphasis mine. Considering the OP is planning to try to keep the PC for as long as possible, it's quite possible that the cost savings from better energy efficiency can surpass the initial cost.

Nope. He was talking about getting an Intel i7-5960X ($1050 and 140W TDP), whereas my suggestion is something more along the lines of an AMD FX 8320E ($150 and 95W TDP) or even an AMD FX 9370E ($200 and 95W TDP). I don't care how damn efficient that Intel chip is (at idle, since it draws more power than the AMD does under load), the AMD chip isn't going to use an extra EIGHT HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS of electricity!*

Even a top-of-the-line AMD FX 9590, with a ridiculous 220W TDP, doesn't cost nearly enough ($245) for the i7 to break even.

For the price of an i7-5960X, you could buy and upgrade AMD chips four times!

High-end Intel chips are so mindbogglingly expensive compared to AMDs that you either (A) need to have some very specific need to run a particular pathologically-unparallelizable algorithm as blazingly fast as possible or (B) need to be completely insane to even begin to consider one.

(*I did the math: For that to happen, the AMD chip would have to be drawing 86 more watts than the Intel chip every second of every day for the entire 8 year period, assuming 14.1 cents per kWh which was the national average in September 2014.)

(Note: all prices are from NewEgg)
If you read my posts above, I never suggested getting a 5960X. I suggested a 4770K. And I completely agree with you, getting a 5960X is stupid.
My point is that you cannot blindly state that all Intel chips will never come out ahead in terms of energy costs without knowing what the OPs computing habits are. I said it's quite possible. I never said it definitively is or is not true.

Ask ten people, get eleven opinions.

Intel vs AMD arguments never get old, and are as stupid as they always were.
Hahaha so true.