I am considering upgrade of my "low-end" s775 system - E5200, Intel P45, geForce 9600GT.
I don't need high-end components, just slightly increase performance, add virtualization support etc...
The shortest way is to pick up some E6500 PDC / E7500 (SLGTE) C2D with virtualization support and higher frequencies and nV GTS250, which is the 55nm revision of famous G92 GPU.
Is it worth those money? I dont see any sense to upgrade to AM2+/AM3, because Phenom II architecture became on par with C2D, which is CPU I already have, and C2D have better power and temperature qualities.
Phenoms II are also far behind Core i5/i7, so I think in case of huge upgrade, it make a sense to go Intel way too.
As usual, "it it worth the money" depends on your usage and needs, and of course on your available money. My current rig is slower than yours and still does everything I need it to do quite fine, and will likely do so for another year until I replace it.
A quad core CPU will give you a huge performance boost if your software actually supports quad-cores (or you're a heavy multi-tasker). Otherwise, getting a new CPU is a waste of money (IMHO).
The GTX260 is faster than the 9600GT, but it draws twice the wattage as well. The performance per watt hasn't increased much as the GTX 2xx-GPUs are based on the same core as the 9600GT.
Are there any specific games or apps where you want more 3d performance? Upgrading the CPU and keeping the 9600GT is an option.
I tried to OC my CPU to 3.25GHz without any problems. But, during few days, my Gigabyte mobo accidentally drops BIOS settings.
If we consider Quad-core as the only reasonable upgrade, I won't buy any Core2quad, because s775 is at the end of its life and higher investments do not have sense. So we are at Phenom II vs. Nehalem crossroads then.
I do not feel lack of performance, but E5200 does not support virtualization, and I would like to play with KVM.
There is also one important thing. DDR2 costs 1.7x more, then one Year ago, when I bought 4GB. DDR3 cost 2.5x more. This is very strange situation because during a year, prices usually drop.
yeah, ram prices are pretty volatile. To be fair, the prices a year ago were basically stealing.
hardware virtualization doesn't come for free, it adds some overhead. In fact, virtualization without the hardware features is sometimes faster. Have you tried virtualbox or even vmware yet? They're easier to use, feature-rich and don't require a hardware upgrade.
It looks like you want to spend a buckload of cash on hardware to play with KVM and for a slight speed-upgrade you don't need yet. Are there any other reasons?
gigabyte boards return to save settings when you press the reset button too often or poweroff while booting. You could even land in a state where you need to clear cmos to be able to oc again. If you know that it is not too hard to avoid, but the system must be tested to be stable under highest load, maybe using prime95 in 2 threads at high priority or other tools that can verify operation. do not oc your ram, thats no good idea and often results in extra problems. also problems appear if you go over fsb 400 (then you have to disable eist to detect full speed, also c1e), so until you keep below and your cpu works it should be fine.
I made myself additional research and AFAIK it is more complicated.
1) Having four gigs of DDR2 memory, It is nonsense to consider any solution with DDR3. The cost of DDR3 is terrible (as well as actual price of DDR2)
2) Intel platform has incompatible socket mishmash including ending s775, actual 1366 and 1156, and upcoming 1155.
3) Actual Intel chipset on the only reasonable upgrade platform LGA1156 support PCIe 1.0 (actually it is gen 2.0 set to run gen 1.0 only) connected via DMI. This make future upgrade with SATA 6Gb or USB 3.0 ad-on card more complicated. DMI as well as PCie gen 1.0 could be bottleneck.
4) AMD chipsets use NB to support all PCIe connectivity and PCIe is Gen 2.0 for all ports.. Thus Any possible ad-on controller would be connected through Hypertransport and PCIe 2.0.
This make me come back to the beginning and consider AMD platform as more upgradable, and capable of using my DDR2 as a bonus. Maybe selling Intel E5200 + Gigabyte P45, and upgrading to AMD+AMD would be right way and very very cheap too.
Yes. It is question of how much is enough. Using one of the slowest dual-core I don't strugle with critical low computational power. 3 years ago, everybody was satisfied with CPU that can't even match my E5200. So is it worth the money?
Somebody above suggested, that only reasonable upgrade would be quad-core. Do you think, it worth money to go much more expensive Intel LGA1156 even if it will lack chipset conectivity near future due to the Intel DMI interconnect, and need new expensive RAM?