A typical upgrade help post!

Associate
Joined
28 Dec 2020
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3
Hi guys,

I'm looking to upgrade my PC. Last I fiddled with it was around 4 years ago so definitely time for some tuning.

Here are my specs.

Operating System
Windows 10 Home 64-bit
CPU
Intel Core i7 4790K @ 4.00GHz
Haswell 22nm Technology
RAM
16.0GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 933MHz (10-11-10-30)
Motherboard
Gigabyte Technology Co. Ltd. Z97X-Gaming 3 (SOCKET 0)
Graphics
Acer XB280HK ([email protected])
Intel HD Graphics 4600 (Gigabyte)
4095MB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (MSI)
SLI Disabled
Storage
111GB Samsung SSD 850 EVO 120GB (SATA (SSD))
1863GB Crucial CT2000MX500SSD1 (SATA (SSD))

I'm looking at a budget of around £600

Thanks my dudes!
 
Soldato
Joined
1 Apr 2014
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Aberdeen
4095MB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080

Are you sure about that? I thought they had 8 GB VRAM.

I'm looking to upgrade my PC. Last I fiddled with it was around 4 years ago so definitely time for some tuning.

Actually, unless your CPU is a bottleneck, don't bother. That's still a respectable CPU and prices are very high right now. To upgrade it you would need to get CPU, motherboard, and RAM. THe GPU is a different matter: wait until supply catches up and then grab a RTX 3070 Founders Edition.
 
Associate
OP
Joined
28 Dec 2020
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Hi all - thanks for the messages.
Will respond to you in turn.

Are you sure about that? I thought they had 8 GB VRAM.



Actually, unless your CPU is a bottleneck, don't bother. That's still a respectable CPU and prices are very high right now. To upgrade it you would need to get CPU, motherboard, and RAM. THe GPU is a different matter: wait until supply catches up and then grab a RTX 3070 Founders Edition.

That is what it came up as on Speccy. Unsure what you mean by CPU as a bottleneck - I'm not massively techy. So you reckon just upgrade the GPU and leave the others for now?

At 4K maybe just upgrade gtx 1080? 3060ti up, oh and your mobo takes faster RAM, up to 3200, may help a bit?

Thank you for the GPU upgrade suggestion. What do you mean about the motherboard taking faster RAM? Do you mean i upgrade the RAM modules I have from 16b to maybe 32?

You could go for a cpu , motherboard and memory upgrade or gpu, whats you gaming at ?

Would all of these be within the budget of 600? Would it be better to focus on upping the motherboard, ram and CPU or to just get a better GPU in your opinion?


Thanks in advance!
 
Soldato
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West Side
Upgrading your cpu, motherboard and memory will give you a decent performance boosta and a more well rounded system but if your gaming at 4k the gpu does most of the work.

Is your system lacking in any area do you need more fps ?
 
Soldato
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Aberdeen
Unsure what you mean by CPU as a bottleneck - I'm not massively techy.

To determine whether or not your CPU is a bottleneck - that is, if the CPU is holding you back - is very easy. If you have a second monitor just fire up Task Manager and go to the Performance tab. Change the graph to view logical processors. Play your games and do your work and see if the CPU or any core on the CPU hits 100%. You can do the same with the GPU. One hitting 100% without the other means a bottleneck. If you don't have a second monitor you can do this in MSI Afterburner, but it's more complex.

So you reckon just upgrade the GPU and leave the others for now?

Subject to the above, but yes, that's my expectation. Gaming at 4K is usually GPU-limited.
 
Soldato
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Thank you for the GPU upgrade suggestion. What do you mean about the motherboard taking faster RAM? Do you mean i upgrade the RAM modules I have from 16b to maybe 32?
With your current system you are unlikely to need more than 16GB of RAM, but if you can find 16GB of 3000/3200 DDR3 you may get a boost.
For 4K gaming best bet is to 'find' an RTX 3070 now and upgrade rest of system later. You should get around £200 for gtx 1080 btw. Good luck.
 
Associate
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18 Sep 2012
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176
To determine whether or not your CPU is a bottleneck - that is, if the CPU is holding you back - is very easy. If you have a second monitor just fire up Task Manager and go to the Performance tab. Change the graph to view logical processors. Play your games and do your work and see if the CPU or any core on the CPU hits 100%. You can do the same with the GPU. One hitting 100% without the other means a bottleneck. If you don't have a second monitor you can do this in MSI Afterburner, but it's more complex.



Subject to the above, but yes, that's my expectation. Gaming at 4K is usually GPU-limited.


Could HWMonitor be any good for this sort of monitoring what with the sticky max values?
 
Associate
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I just use Task Manager to monitor the load; HWMonitor is useful for monitoring temperatures and the like

Sorry, I should have also said if there's no second monitor would HWMonitor be useful for the load readings it shows etc especially as they are sticky? I suppose you could just task swap with Task Manager as well as you get 60s worth of readings?
 
Soldato
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Drop your cash on a GPU as at 4K that's where you will get the most performance per £££.
 
Associate
Joined
18 Sep 2012
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176
Your best bet is MSI Afterburner.

I do use Afterburner with RivaTuner, but never really thought to look at the loads as I was focused on the FPS. Is this what you mean?

ARMA3.jpg

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Associate
OP
Joined
28 Dec 2020
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3
Thanks all for the help!

I have been looking around at a 3070, but everywhere seems sold out as all hell.

I was toying with the idea of holding off on that for a bit till they come back in stock and upgrading my motherboard so I can put some DDR4 Ram into it. My current one can only do DDR3.
Will probably set me back maybe 300 for those bits, then hold off on the GPU for a while.

I think the CPU is still pretty good for now?
 
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