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Upgrade now or wait for Haswell?

DagleDagle Member UncommonPosts: 9

My current system is about 4 years old:

Q9550 2.83 ghz


4GB Ram

GeForce 9800 GTX/GTX+


I don't overclock and generally don't play terribly graphics intense games, WoW mostly but Diablo3/Skyrim if I'm feeling bored by WoW.  I'll occasionally play just about anything that interests me and I don't want to be constrained from trying a game because of my system.  I probably would have upgraded sometime in the past year but I've been playing some older games over the past 12-18 months rather than any new titles (at least for extended periods) so I've not been noticing problems.  


Nevertheless, I've been getting the itch to upgrade my system.  Lets say that I'm not particularly budget confined but at the same time I'm not interested in paying extra for componets just to win an epeen contest.  I've been looking at a system generally around these parameters:

i5 3570

Asus P8Z77-V LX

16 GB Ram

GeForce 670

OCZ Agility 4 256GB SSD w/1 or 2 TB WD hard drive (this is probably a ton of overkill given that I've got near 300 GB free on my current 500 GB HD).


I'm wondering if anyone has heard enough about Haswell to recommend holding out for another 6-9 months for the 'tock' release with a new chipset MOBO.  Most of what I've seen around Haswell seems to suggest that Intel is focusing on improvements mostly for the mobile market (integrated graphics/reduced power consumption) as opposed to gaming desktops.  While I appreciate future proofing is impossible, I'm also comfortable waiting a short time if there is an expectation that the next release is going to be a significant jump up.  Do any of the board pros have thoughts?


  • simonwest80simonwest80 Member Posts: 173

    Gaming wise i wouldnt bother.

    I have that exact same cpu + mobo, and to be honest the differences you will see vs an i5 will be minimal in games.  

    Best advice i would suggest is a new GPU - 670 is a good choice and a SSD, if you can find it by all means get some more ram if you can but tracking down decent DDR2 nowadays is hard and expensive.

  • CaldrinCaldrin Member UncommonPosts: 4,505

    i upgraded from a similar system to an i7 2700k and the difference was amazing, actually used the same graphics cards i had in the old system for a bit but it made gamnig so much better.

    I would think an i5 would priduce similar results..


    Should you wait? i say no if you do that with PC hardware you will be waiting for the next best thing forever..

  • RidelynnRidelynn Member EpicPosts: 7,061

    Will be really hard to tell until we see some leaked info.

    Haswell is the next "tock" in the Intel lifecycle. Ivy Bridge was largely a Sandy Bridge design slightly modified to work on the 22nm process. Haswell will use (more or less) the same 3D 22nm that Ivy Bridge does, but Haswell is not just a rehashed Ivy Bridge, it's supposed to have a good bit of new silicon with it. How that will perform is anyone's guess, as well as how improvements to the manufacturing process will affect performance.

    Most of Haswell seems to revolve around power - that can mean a few things.

    On the surface that generates a lot of talk about Laptops and Ultrabooks, and even some rumors about Tablets. Areas that are really power/heat restrained

    In the enthusiast arena though, we aren't so much power restrained. We don't run off batteries, and can use big heatsinks and plenty of airflow. But that doesn't mean power isn't a big deal: the less power the chip uses, in general, the higher we can crank up the clock. Ivy Bridge wasn't all that much faster, clock-wise, than Sandy, and was a much less aggressive overclocker. Maybe we'll see that change with Haswell - higher stock clocks, more agressive Turbo Boost, and potentially better overclock potential.

    Will Haswell totally and radically redefine the personal computer, to the point that current Ivy Bridge (or even your Yorkfield) are totally irrelevent? No, probably not. I would guess ~15-20%ish stock performance increase over Ivy (that has been the general trend in new CPU releases in the last few generations). Your Yorkfield will continue to perform fairly well, but I can understand the itch to upgrade.

    Haswell is due Q1 2013, but that's very much up in the air, and I couldn't say it would necessarily be worth waiting for, but at the same time, I can't necessarily say that it's worth a whole lot to upgrade your C2Q Yorkfield either. If you've got the itch, then I suppose it would more depend on you.

    This page from Anand talks about probably the most significant changes to the Haswell architecture.


  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,129

    My advice would be, just get something now.  The only important thing coming in the next several months is next week's Vishera, and that's only of interest to people who can't afford Ivy Bridge.

    I don't recall the source, but I thought Haswell was looking more like mid-2013 than early 2013.  It will probably be a little faster than Ivy Bridge, but not massively so.  Most of what Intel has talked about with Haswell is bringing power consumption down, especially idle power consumption.  That's critical if you want to put Haswell in a tablet, and very nice for laptops.  But it doesn't matter in a desktop.

    AMD doesn't have anything worth waiting for, either.  Kaveri and Kabini are their chips for 2013, and Kaveri won't come anywhere near Ivy Bridge in CPU performance, while Kabini is targeted at low power markets, mainly laptops and ultra-cheap desktops.

    On the video card side, there's nothing important coming until 2014 unless you want a faster single GPU card than you can get today--and are willing to pay through the nose to get it.  Nvidia's upcoming GK110 chip will probably be the most expensive GPU chip to produce since sometime around ever, and it's really focused on Tesla cards.  AMD's top chip of the 8000 series and Nvidia's GK114 will probably be a little faster than what you can get today--but only a little and not a lot.

  • DagleDagle Member UncommonPosts: 9
    Thanks for the replies.  You all helped confirm what I was thinking that an upgrade now was the right choice.
  • ShakyMoShakyMo Member CommonPosts: 7,207
    I5 3570k AMD 7850 8gb ddr3

    Affordable and last you a few years.
  • PraedatorisPraedatoris Member Posts: 10
    Originally posted by ShakyMo
    I5 3570k AMD 7850 8gb ddr3

    Affordable and last you a few years.

    Some of us prefer the green team to the red one.  And, the price difference between 16GB and 8 is minimal, so there is no reason to "skimp" on memory.

    OP, don't wait for Haswell.  The only thing I would change is the SSD.  I'm not a fan of OCZ as a brand, and while they may have fixed many of the issues with the Sandforce controllers, I still don't trust drives that use them like those from OCZ or Corsair.  Get a Samsung 830/840 series or a Crucial M4 instead - better drives, and very affordable (I got a 256GB Samsung 830 in a build otherwise the same as yours.)

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