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Windows 7: Some help with processors please...

24 Nov 2010   #1

Windows 7 x64 Professional
 
 
Some help with processors please...

I am looking to buying a new PC but I am struggling to decide between to processors. Either the i7-930 or the i7-870.

Here's the thing, they are pretty equal so its a toss up of what is more important. Please give me your input. Everything will be appreciated.

Thanks.

Btw: overclocking isn't an issue, if that's any help.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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24 Nov 2010   #2

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit
 
 

I'm running the i7-870 on an Asus board. Assembled it in early August with no problems since.

I also considered the i7-930. The price difference of the chip and the x58 motherboard and RAM was more than my budget could handle.
You can't go wrong either way. There are other similar set ups to mine by users on the forum and others with the 930.

Price seems to be the major difference not performance.

I saved the money and I am well satisfied with the ASUS motherboard combo I have.
The 870 will OC to 3.8GHz with no problem.
I had to try it once.
Not sure of the limit but have heard about them up to 4.0.
So they aren't a dog.

Hope that helps
Mike
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Nov 2010   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

The Intel Core i7-930 and i7-870 processors are really close in most aspects, but the i7-930 has features that only enterprise users, professional video, or heavy gamers might use.
The i7-870 matches or betters the i7-930 in almost all benchmarks – and uses less power!
So unless you have extreme needs, you can save a few quid with the i7-870 and plow it back into more memory or maybe a better graphics card etc.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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24 Nov 2010   #4

Windows 7 64-bit Home
 
 

If you dont want to overclock go with the i7-870.

the 9XX series have unlocked multipliers that are used for overclocking and are really only necessary if you want to extreme overclock to get crazy performance. Even if you are 3-D rendering or running massive processor hog programs an i7-870 will get you by.

also, the 8XX series is on the P55 chipset (LGA 1156) which from my experience (not personal, forums and articles) is more stable than the 9XX series X58 chipset (LGA 1366). You would get triple channel ram with a X58 but from my experience (again reading, not personal) the advantages of triple channel ram are not worth the instability. Unless you want to squeeze every microbyte of performance out of your machine and it is something you enjoy... then by all means go for the X58 triple channel 9XX series.

I currently run an i7-870 and have yet to come close to get it really working hard. (the machine runs smooth!) I was in about the same situation as you and for the reasons i listed above chose to go with my current setup (in lower left) and couldn't be happier.


edit: good read http://tech.icrontic.com/articles/ma...really-better/
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Nov 2010   #5

Windows 8 Pro x64
 
 

When I bought my i7 920, there was no such thing as Core i7 800 series. All I had a choice between was a Core 2 Quad, and a Core i7. Obviously, I wasn't about to drop a lot of money on a dying processor architecture. Given the choice today, I still would have gone with the 920/930. The reason is that it supports both Crossfire and SLI with the X58 chipset. Also, the triple channel memory means it has 6 RAM slots instead of 4, which means up to 24 GB of RAM supported. More future ready and flexible as far as I'm concerned. I'm not saying the 800 series is a bad choice, just not where I wanted my money in.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Nov 2010   #6

Windows 7 64-bit Home
 
 

Saying that the P55 chipset doesnt support SLI/Crossfire is incorrect. It will reduce them to 2x8 slots instead of 2x16 slots but to notice that type of downgrade is not likely. It is more something to be aware of if you choose that route.

if you plan on using xfire/sli ever: Warning: These P55 motherboards will cripple your Crossfire/SLI performance | Hardware Revolution

even if you choose a board that will according to that article "cripple" your setup i still think you would see a performance gain. no personal experience tho. searching for an article or review now.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Nov 2010   #7

Windows 7 X64
 
 

might i ask what this rig will be used for?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Nov 2010   #8

Windows 7 x64 Professional
 
 

Thanks for all your answers, You have all been very helpful. Just to give you some more info:

I do CAD for a living and also a lot of rendering of finished articles (for marketing purposes). My current system is what you see in my system specs. This ok (and only ok) for smaller jobs but absolutely crippled by larger assemblies and all rendering. Then there's the gaming...

Hence the new rig.

My confusion regarding the two processors is this:
The 930 runs at 2.8GHz while the 870 runs at 2,93GHz. That's not too much of a difference. But then I look a bit further and it gets more complicated. The 870 run on less power so I assume it generates less heat but the 930 has a higher QPI (4,8GT/s as opposed to 2.5GT/s on the 870). The 930 also has a higher memory bandwidth than the 870 (25GB/s as opposed to 21GB/s). That alone would put the 930 higher on the list but then I read that the 930 can only run on 800MHz and 1066Mhz DDR3 RAM whereas the 870 runs on 1333MHz and 1600Mhz... and that's a biggie!!!

Now you see what I mean. Both have pluses and minuses and no matter what I choose I will lose out on something somewhere
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Nov 2010   #9

Windows 7 64-bit Home
 
 

i think you would benefit from the upgrade to the 9XX series of processors and the tripple channel ram with the CAD and rendering that you do. sure it may require a little more messing with to get it right (may not too) but for the high end CAD and rendering will always benefit from the top of the line systems.

if money is an issue and you dont want to drop a few bills on a state of the art machine, the 870 will run your CAD without problems as well.

im not a hardware engineer but im pretty sure those comparisons you listed are probably very minute in actual performance

side by side the 9XX series will be faster than the 8XX series, but the 8XX will use less power and runs on a more stable platform. also as mentioned before the 9XX series will overclock more if thats what you want to do.

as you can see from my build i went with the 870 because i wasnt planning on going nuts with overclocking and wanted to keep my first build as stable as possible, as well as keep the price to a semi reasonable level.

for you the choice may be different. i hope i have helped, rather than make your decision harder!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2010   #10

Windows 7 x64 Professional
 
 

Thanks for your reply DE. Much appreciated. I am still unsure about the usable RAM though. If the 930 can only use 800MHz and 1066MHz RAM as opposed to the 870's 1333MHz and 1600MHz won't that slow it down?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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