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View Full Version : Need help upgrading (CPU bound) PC for better framerate.


Fleegsta
2013-05-17, 07:50 PM
I'll try and keep this short and concise:

Basically, I want the cheapest set of upgrades that would allow me to play the game on Ultra everything with a 30 (preferably 40) fps minimum (meaning in the largest of battles) on my 1080p monitor. I'm willing to overclock and whatever else if ideal. I have no limited budget - I have quite a bit of extra cash saved up, I'm not looking for the best build to satisfy a specified price, but rather the opposite; the cheapest build to satisfy a specified performance. Keep in mind I'm still fairly newbie at PC building, so please be specific, concise, and detailed (especially on terminology, easily confusable part names, risks and requirements, etc).

My current PC build has been able to run every other modern game
so far on ultra with a 30 fps minimum (excluding occasional spikes from loading stuff) no problem. It was custom built by me a bit over 2 years ago and as proved quite the beast at getting the job done.. up until this one game.

In PS2 (running gamebooster, unparked cores, CPU efficient game settings (except draw distance)) my fps varies dramatically (and seemingly randomly) from 20-65 when alone (usually only drops below 35 when certain events happen). In large battles, it varies from 1-20, making it impossible to play competitively like I naturally like to do.

My Current Specs:
Processor: Pentium(R) Dual-Core CPU E5300 @ 2.60GHz (2 CPUs), ~2.6GHz
RAM: 4 Gig (EDIT: DDR2 I'm pretty sure, as the mobo slots are DDR2)
Video Card: AMD Radeon HD 6870
Video Memory: 2388MB
Power Supply: 700W
Operating System: Windows 7 64-bit
EDIT: Motherboard: ASRock G965M-S (http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/G965M-S/)
(I have no idea what fan I have.. Forget how I'd check that, can't seem to find the boxes and apparently not listed in dxdiag).

I assume the primary problem is my CPU.. I highly doubt my video card would need replacing as it's fairly top tier and was a recent upgrade when StarCraft 2 came out to run it on ultra (which it does flawlessly). Plus GPU's are expensive and I'd hate having to upgrade this pretty damn good one. Not to mention I just realized it's the recommended GPU in the game's recommended settings.

So again, what would be the cheapest set of upgrades to get me a 30 (preferably 40) fps minimum in any and all scenarios (including large scale battles) on ULTRA everything.

And, if it matters, I don't ever turn vsync on in any game. I don't even understand why it exists.. When it's not causing input lag it seems to do absolutely nothing anyway. Motionblur would be nice but I might end up turning it off for competetive reasons anyway (as I often do). EDIT: Oh yeah, and despite my competetiveness, I want to be able to keep shadows on.. It just makes the game look so much better it's worth it for me.

Stick Pin
2013-05-18, 12:14 PM
I don't know a whole lot, but I see 2 things you need. Some more Ram, CPU should be an I5 or I7. I'm looking into a new MB so I can get a newer CPU. I have 2 Nvidia 570sli and am getting the same FPS you get.

MrKwatz
2013-05-18, 01:31 PM
I would get a new mobo - z77-v ($175) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131820), cpu - 3570k ($220) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116504), cpu cooler - 212+ ($30) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103065), and ram - 8gb ($70) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233186). You can easily overclock (http://www.overclock3d.net/reviews/cpu_mainboard/gigabyte_z77_overclocking_guide/1) the CPU to 4.0-4.4ghz. There are plenty of cheaper mobos if you want to reduce cost, and there are lots of deals (http://slickdeals.net/newsearch.php?forumchoice[]=4&forumchoice[]=9&forumchoice[]=10&forumchoice[]=13&forumchoice[]=25&forumchoice[]=30&forumchoice[]=38&forumchoice[]=39&forumchoice[]=41&forumchoice[]=44&forumchoice[]=53&forumchoice[]=54&q=3570k&showposts=0&archive=0&firstonly=1) on CPU/mobo combos, those prices are just MSRP.

With my 3570k @4.4ghz and GTX 670 I run at ultra with FPS usually in the 45-60 range (capped in ini to 60, and I am often GPU limited) and never dropping below 30 at any time. Shadows on medium, AO, motion blur, and renderquality set to 1.22 (on a native res of 2560x1440)

Intel's new processors are coming out in June but it's an iGPU focused update, so you can wait if you want but it may be a little bit more expensive for very minimal gain.

Fleegsta
2013-05-18, 08:39 PM
I would get a new mobo - z77-v ($175) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131820), cpu - 3570k ($220) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116504), cpu cooler - 212+ ($30) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103065), and ram - 8gb ($70) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233186). You can easily overclock (http://www.overclock3d.net/reviews/cpu_mainboard/gigabyte_z77_overclocking_guide/1) the CPU to 4.0-4.4ghz. There are plenty of cheaper mobos if you want to reduce cost, and there are lots of deals (http://slickdeals.net/newsearch.php?forumchoice[]=4&forumchoice[]=9&forumchoice[]=10&forumchoice[]=13&forumchoice[]=25&forumchoice[]=30&forumchoice[]=38&forumchoice[]=39&forumchoice[]=41&forumchoice[]=44&forumchoice[]=53&forumchoice[]=54&q=3570k&showposts=0&archive=0&firstonly=1) on CPU/mobo combos, those prices are just MSRP.

With my 3570k @4.4ghz and GTX 670 I run at ultra with FPS usually in the 45-60 range (capped in ini to 60, and I am often GPU limited) and never dropping below 30 at any time. Shadows on medium, AO, motion blur, and renderquality set to 1.22 (on a native res of 2560x1440)

That sounds pretty good.. One question though, why a new mobo? I assume one of those parts would require a mobo of specific type or of certain quality?

Also, would any brand/type of ram be fine, so long as it's 8+ gig?

EDIT: After a bit of thinking about it, I think I'd rather not overclock even if it means a pricier CPU.. I'm just not sure I trust myself to successfully and safely pull it off without fuckin up something somehow.. It'd just be one more thing that could go wrong.. So what would be an alternate to overclocking while still getting the same performance? Any even better CPUs?

EDIT AGAIN: I found the book for my motherboard. It seems to be this: http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/G965M-S/. Would this be fine or would I still have to upgrade it?

MrKwatz
2013-05-19, 01:09 AM
Different intel CPU gens have different sockets because of different power requirements among other factors, they cannot be interchanged. You may also need to look up your PSU and make sure it's compatible with socket 1155. OCing is extremely easy, though time consuming. It's a very automated process with just a few user options that are touched, and there are all sorts of automated protection systems that makes it near impossible for you to damage the CPU. Read through a few guides and you'll do fine. Basically you just input the numbers they tell you to in the guide (multiplier usually stays at 44 and the voltage will be what you have to test), test it for stability through an automated process, go down to the next number, test again, and then keep going down until you find your lower limit of stability, bump up the voltage a bit and test again to make sure it's stable and you're done. There's isn't another option beyond paying hundreds more for an 3930k + x79 mobo, or just stay at the stock 3.3ghz clock of the 3570k and judge for yourself whether you need to pursue OCing for your desired performance.

Fleegsta
2013-05-19, 01:28 AM
Different intel CPU gens have different sockets because of different power requirements among other factors, they cannot be interchanged. You may also need to look up your PSU and make sure it's compatible with socket 1155. OCing is extremely easy, though time consuming. It's a very automated process with just a few user options that are touched, and there are all sorts of automated protection systems that makes it near impossible for you to damage the CPU. Read through a few guides and you'll do fine. Basically you just input the numbers they tell you to in the guide (multiplier usually stays at 44 and the voltage will be what you have to test), test it for stability through an automated process, go down to the next number, test again, and then keep going down until you find your lower limit of stability, bump up the voltage a bit and test again to make sure it's stable and you're done. There's isn't another option beyond paying hundreds more for an 3930k + x79 mobo, or just stay at the stock 3.3ghz clock of the 3570k and judge for yourself whether you need to pursue OCing for your desired performance.

Alright perfect! Thanks a lot for the info, you've been very helpful and descriptive.

Ailos
2013-05-19, 12:33 PM
Your CPU/RAM is the biggest contributor to your lousy framerate. Yes, you're going to need a new i5, but given that Haswell is around the corner, wait for that, if you can.

With the new Haswell i5, you'll need some high-speed RAM (at least DDR3-1866) - you can buy that now, if you want, since prices seem to be on the upswing and will likely go up after Haswell's release as more people will be upgrading to higher-performance parts. And of course an LGA 1150 motherboard.

Your power supply, video card and other such components should be perfectly compatible with the new motherboard, CPU and RAM. You probably won't even have to re-install the operating system (just install chipset drivers once you turn it back on).

Fleegsta
2013-05-19, 07:33 PM
How much better would the haswell be than the 3570? (Specifically, estimated increase in framerate)

I'd probably wait a few days after release to see what reviews and other users have to say about it to really get an accurate idea.. I wonder how much more the price would be.. Also wonder if (and how much) the 3570's price would drop afterwards..

Ailos
2013-05-19, 11:10 PM
It'll probably be around 10% improvement in general, but I suspect that for PS2 it'd be particularly large improvement (~10 FPS extra or so) in large part because its memory bandwidth will be larger, and memory bandwidth is the big bottleneck for PS2.

Traak
2013-07-01, 12:36 AM
And, remember, it isn't overall average framerates that are the most critical measure, it's the minimum framerates. If you have 40fps on average, and 39 at the worst, you are doing much better in overall playability than you are with 120fps on average, and 10fps at the worst, which is usually in the heaviest combat directly involving you.

I wonder if it is possible to cap your maximum framerates, so your response in times of heavier load are snappier, because instead of the video card having to offload 240 frames worth of rendering in the two seconds that a firefight takes, and tripping over itself because of all that buffered data it is now dealing with, what if you could instruct the card to only buffer data and paint the screen at 60fps instead?

I wonder if that would result in reduced latency in critical situations.

johnukguy
2013-07-06, 03:19 PM
You'll get far more bang for your buck with an AMD FX 8350.

Rbstr
2013-07-08, 10:11 AM
No you don't. It costs the same as an I5 4570 and offers marginally better multi-threadded performance at the cost of worse single-threaded performance.

Ailos
2013-07-08, 07:04 PM
You'll get far more bang for your buck with an AMD FX 8350.

No you don't. It costs the same as an I5 4570 and offers marginally better multi-threadded performance at the cost of worse single-threaded performance.

Also, Vishera still trails on the energy efficiency side of things. It looks nice on paper when the processor has higher stock frequencies, but it really does absolutely nothing for a gamer when these higher frequencies are achieved at the expense of overclocking headroom and the processor consumes twice the juice (and produces twice the heat) in the effort to only kinda match the performance.

PS2 prefers Intel. Deliberately or not, that's where you'll have the better experience.

Traak
2013-07-08, 09:52 PM
Well, Intel did what it took to come back in the desktop processor market and has been mopping the floor with AMD since the Core lineage started.