Help me pick a new CPU - Socket AM3+

#1 Posted by Irishdoom (394 posts) -

So's I rebuilt most of my PC about a year ago, and I saved some cash on the CPU by getting an older AM3 socket CPU (Athlon X3 455) with the intention of replacing it later, as I got a Mobo with an AM3+ socket. Well, my birthday is coming up, and I think it's about that time. Tom's Hardware actually failed me a bit, since their gaming CPU recos past $100 are all Intel. What's the best AMD CPU I can get in the neighborhood of $150?


#2 Posted by BigBoss1911 (2704 posts) -

#3 Posted by Mike (15330 posts) -

One of my machines has an 8120 in it. Great CPU and easily overclockable as well.

#4 Posted by Irishdoom (394 posts) -

I'm currently debating between the 6300 and the 8120.

The 8120 obviously is 8 core rather than 6, but it's also a Bulldozer chip where the 6300 is piledriver. The price is nearly identical right now on Newegg ($5 more for the 8120.) I don't know that I do anything that will really take advantage of those extra cores, and I've heard Piledriver is significantly better than Bulldozer. Tough decision!

#5 Posted by GiroMindTricks (79 posts) -

If you're just playing games you don't really need any more than an quad core. I have an FX-8120 @3.8Ghz and it only uses more than 4 cores when doing video compression or other CPU intensive stuff. If I could go back I would probably just get a 4 core and put the money towards other things.

Also, make sure to update your BIOS before you take out your old CPU. Most AM3+ motherboards don't natively support FX series CPU's and need a BIOS update to support the latest chips.

#6 Posted by Chrjz (407 posts) -

Updating your BIOS is a good call; you'll want to do that before taking your old chip out.

If your gaming you do not need more than 4 cores so it makes more sense to have higher GHz instead of more cores. The 6 core processors look good but you can also get a 4 core @ 4.2GHz...

#7 Posted by Devildoll (965 posts) -

amd's new bulldozer cpu's arnt really like traditional cpu's though.

modules instead of cores and all that jaz, an old Phenom II beats a bulldozer core for "core" clock for clock, its just that the bulldozers usually have twice as many.

a 8350 seems to be pretty decent though.

#8 Edited by Franstone (1295 posts) -

Go big or go home.

Once the next gen consoles come out more games will start using more cores and you'll prob have some regret.

Esp after PC stomps on the consoles 6 months to a year later.

Edit: I haven't read it too much detail about the differences in those CPUs but thinking games are only gonna use 2-4 cores for that much longer is probably wrong in my opinion.

#9 Edited by Devildoll (965 posts) -

@Franstone: the time to buy cpus with more cores is when games start to work that way, not before.

its rarely effective to buy for the future, just upgrade when your stuff starts to get weak.

#10 Posted by Franstone (1295 posts) -

@Devildoll: You don't need to upgrade your CPU that often, why set yourself up to be behind the times, maybe he doesn't want to drop cash on a new CPU in the next year or two.

Like I said, my opinion and that is yours.

: )

#11 Posted by Irishdoom (394 posts) -

I ordered the FX-6300 this afternoon. No, the extra couple cores don't matter much now, but the price difference between the quad and hexa was 10 bucks. I ultimately decided I wanted the new Piledriver architecture and NOT the bulldozer chip. Mostly because the PIledriver is one of my favorite all-time wrestling moves. I try to make many of my decisions based on wrestling.

#13 Posted by OldManLight (1103 posts) -

piece of advice, make sure to consult your mobo manufacturer's compatibility sheet to make sure anything you're looking at is supported. happened to me after i just upgraded. I was still able to make it boot but i was scared to death i'd fry the board the CPU or both the entire time.

#14 Edited by Devildoll (965 posts) -

@Franstone: We are probably recommending the same cpu, the 8350.

the reasoning for getting it differed, you should buy for now, not what might happen within the cpu's lifespan.

i dont upgrade cpu's often, im still rocking my i7 920 from 2008, i didnt go for a hexa, granted they got released later, but the gaming lifespan is most likely going to be cut off at roughly the same date.

thats the kind of futureproofing i dont advise.

@Irishdoom: yeah thats a 2nd generation bulldozer,

As i said before the way they are built, they share certain resources between two "modules" which makes em kinda 1/2 cores per advertised core in some cases, which is why an octo is regarded as a traditional quad.

#15 Posted by Irishdoom (394 posts) -

Yeah, my Mobo should be fine, I may have to update the BIOS before I pull the old chip though. I considered the 8320, but decided the extra $40 to get there was too much. I don't need the thing to scream or anything, I just want a decent upgrade that'll last me a couple years. I'm pretty sure this will.

#16 Edited by Franstone (1295 posts) -

@Devildoll: Yea well this isn't a case of maybe games will use more cores someday because they WILL.

That mentality might work for lets say the Windows Phone app store (a la Will Smith) in hopes that someday it will be great.

Games WILL use more cores.

If you're gonna buy a CPU now at this late in a console generation and have no intention/desire to upgrade again anytime soon, you might as well go for it.

By the time he really needs to upgrade from whats available today there will most likely be entirely new sockets/motherboards/CPUs required to get to that next level.

I personally would rather have more power than less.

#17 Posted by MeierTheRed (5040 posts) -

@Irishdoom said:

I ordered the FX-6300 this afternoon. No, the extra couple cores don't matter much now, but the price difference between the quad and hexa was 10 bucks. I ultimately decided I wanted the new Piledriver architecture and NOT the bulldozer chip. Mostly because the PIledriver is one of my favorite all-time wrestling moves. I try to make many of my decisions based on wrestling.

I think you made a good choice there, i read a PC Focus review of it last week, and they had good things to say about it.

#18 Posted by Devildoll (965 posts) -

@Franstone: but do you know that this will happen within the am3+'s viable lifespan?

ps3 has had 7? cores since 2005 or whatever, and games are using like 2-4 cores now in 2013.

might be because the 360 and wii weren't as threaded, but i still have a feeling things wont change dramatically when the next gen consoles hit either, of course, it might happen, might not, no one can promise either way within the am3+'s lifespan anyway.

Who doesn't want more power rather than less, i want more power for today though. example would be buying a Phenom II X6 1055T instead of a Phenom II X4 970, favoring more cores over frequency. cause games of the future might use more cores.

or buying a graphics card at a certain price-range but favoring higher memory amount over computing power, (lets say a 4 GB 660 over a 2GB 670) cause games of the future are going to need more vram.

#19 Edited by Franstone (1295 posts) -

@Devildoll: Using the PS3 as an example is laughable actually...

What you're basically saying to me is your mentality is equal to that of the designers of the WiiU which will be blown out withing a year or so.

(Not to knock on Nintendo since I've got the utmost respect for that company and their IPs and it's great that their "next gen" console is finally this gen.)

Yes, aim low, spend money on things for only today and not for tomorrow, so they can be replaced even sooner, great plan.

It's more common in the PC world to replace your GPU sooner than your CPU, why handicap yourself so soon when we all know games are going to start taking advantage of more cores.

There are games out there now that can take advantage of 4 cores, do you think it's going to stop there?

The long stagnant life-cycle of this generation of consoles is limiting that and we all know it.

I'd rather get more cores now (on an existing motherboard for less money) and make it last as long as possible and upgrade my GPU which is more important than feel the need to upgrade BOTH sooner.

Opinions are great and we are all allowed to have our own.

That is mine and once again that is yours, so I will no longer defend mine in a back and forth denial of the future that we know is coming.

Some people keep the same CPU for far longer than 2, 3, 4, or even 5 years and I can bet you that games will use more than 4 cores by 2017 or 2018.

Edit: When it comes down to a matter of a measly $50-$100, go bigger...

Double Edit: I'm drunk

#20 Edited by Devildoll (965 posts) -

@Franstone: why is it laughable? its one of the primary games platform that developers have to consider when building an engine or game.

even though the probably look at the 360 first, they sure as hell arn't speccing for pc's, at least not multipat titles.

ive never said aim low.

check the examples ive stated above, i say x4 970 in favor of x6 1055 and 670 in favor of a "futureproof" high vram 660.

if you've read my previous replies, you've noted that im still rocking a i7 920, i could have gone "future proof" and bought a hexa, but i doubt that would have survived any longer than this quad, since the architecture will be shit by the time that happens, and a more current alternative will be available with shitloads more horsepower per dollar when that day comes.

I haven't read anything lately indicating a certain move towards games using more cores than 4, so i cant really agree on you on the "we all know" statement.

how long have there been quads? since 07. that's five years. and developers are just now catching up (kinda). BF BC2 being like the first game that didn't run properly on a decent dual-core

as stated, we both probably reccomend the 8350, but for different reasons, i really dont know how long the lifespan of this cpu will be, but it seems to be amd cpu to get today.

ill stop typing now too then ;)

Edit: I just got home from the pub too.

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