• Competitor rules

    Please remember that any mention of competitors, hinting at competitors or offering to provide details of competitors will result in an account suspension. The full rules can be found under the 'Terms and Rules' link in the bottom right corner of your screen. Just don't mention competitors in any way, shape or form and you'll be OK.

Would an i3 be a Bottleneck for Gaming?

Soldato
Joined
10 Sep 2008
Posts
11,972
Location
Bangor, Northern Ireland
Hey guys,

I just upgraded my old workhorse HP desktop from an old E6300 C2D to an i3 550 Clarkdale complete with DDR3 mobo and 4 gigs of RAM. I really only used it for 3D building modelling for work, so it has been a very worthwhile upgrade as it now performs brilliantly.

However, ive decided i might as well upgrade it a bit further with a new PSU and GFX card (possibly 6870) so that I can get back into the glorious world of PC Gaming. My question for you is would my i3 now be considered a bottleneck compared to say an i5 since its only dual core? Or would the difference not be hugely noticeable?

Thanks :)
 
Soldato
Joined
19 Apr 2003
Posts
13,476
Depends on the game - as more and more games are starting to be produced that will utlise 4 cores.

However, there are far more games (for now) which run on 2 cores and an i3 coupled with a 6870 should munch its way through most of them with ease (depending on screen res and settings etc.) Even the games that use all 4 cores will be playable but you may need to make a few comromises in settings with new releases.
 
Soldato
OP
Joined
10 Sep 2008
Posts
11,972
Location
Bangor, Northern Ireland
Depends on the game - as more and more games are starting to be produced that will utlise 4 cores.

However, there are far more games (for now) which run on 2 cores and an i3 coupled with a 6870 should munch its way through most of them with ease (depending on screen res and settings etc.) Even the games that use all 4 cores will be playable but you may need to make a few comromises in settings with new releases.

Thanks Plec, i kinda figured it would be ok for now but not great for future games. For all the difference in price i think i might as well just upgrade then, got a few old bits to sell as well which should help make up the difference :)
 
Soldato
OP
Joined
10 Sep 2008
Posts
11,972
Location
Bangor, Northern Ireland
I have a Core i3 2100 and a HD5850 1GB which runs games fine at 1680X1050. Have you tried overclocking the Core i3 550??

I have it running at 3.9GHz at the minute, though I still havent bought my gfx card yet so i dont know if its much of an improvement over stock speeds as i havent tried any games yet. Ill be playing at 1900x1080 though...
 
Soldato
Joined
9 Nov 2009
Posts
22,251
Location
Planet Earth
I have it running at 3.9GHz at the minute, though I still havent bought my gfx card yet so i dont know if its much of an improvement over stock speeds as i havent tried any games yet. Ill be playing at 1900x1080 though...

How about you buy the graphics card first and see how things go with the games you are playing??
 
Soldato
Joined
6 Feb 2010
Posts
14,358
Yea. An overclocked i3 550 overclock to around 4.0GHz should be fine for majority of the single GPU cards, and it shouldn't really bottleneck a 6870, unless the game is poorly coded.

However, I would suggest you get a 3rd party CPU cooler (if you not already have one) and push the overclock of the i3 higher...4.3-4.5GHz is achievable.
 
Last edited:
Soldato
Joined
27 Mar 2004
Posts
14,081
Location
Between Realities
You guys saying to get a 2500k, Are you kidding me? the guy has just upgraded to an I3 550!?! If anything, he should go with a 750/760. But he may not even need that! Guys that tell people to spend money without the need, thats not advice!! Especially when you're telling the guy to get a new motherboard! The I3 will probably be enough for your needs, but if not, a 750\760 is an easy enough upgrade path.
 
Top Bottom