PC upgrade

There are 59 replies in this Thread. The last Post () by Martind Forlon.

  • Hey guys, want ask about next setup:


    MB: MSI Z370 TOMAHAWK
    CPU: Intel Core i5-8400
    Ram: 2x Kingston HyperX Fury 8GB 2400MHz DDR4 CL15
    SSD: Samsung SSD 960 EVO 250GB (plus my old HDD)
    Gpu: MSI GeForce GTX 1060 ARMOR 6G OCV1


    Will this fit together? Is there some obvious weak component? Is worth use other component with similar price? (this setup above is on my maximum budget)

  • First, lemme mention my specialty is budget builds. I generally try to spend as little as possible for the best quality product. Usually i'm looking at early current gen or late last gen equipment, which i feel is still within the "future proof" pool.


    imo, stick another 8GB of RAM in it. Your computer and games will love you. RAM Timings don't make a huge/noticeable difference, so you can always save a few bucks for a small performance difference.


    And unless you're planning to run ED in VR or any other VR game, anything more than a 4gb GPU is overkill.. I have 16gb of Ram and an MSI RX480 4gb and everything runs phenomenally at max settings. It's a VR ready card, but since i'm only running a 4-core CPU, it's not worth spending the other 500-600 bucks on a decent VR kit.


    If anything: Dump as much money as possible in your graphics card and skimp on the parts.


    I mean are you just trying to make a general PC upgrade or do you have something specific in mind you planned on doing with it (besides ED)?

  • I use atm more as 10years old PC with gtx960 card. With some luck I can keep case, cpu coller (same monster as todays) and noctua ventilators and HDDs one 5400rpn and one 7200rpm disk. VR is tempting but that is not for me due various reasons. I want good PC which can be upgraded during next '10' years with single part change. .. It's pc for gaming :)

  • not a bad setup
    however, a few questions


    is there a timeframe when you want top upgrade?
    is there a specific reason why you want that mainboard?


    The choice of the mainboard was the biggest problem for me when I have build my 8700k.
    There are so many out there with different details.
    Most important for you should be to know which devices you want to connect. How many USB3 ports do you need? Is USB 3.1 interesting to you. How many USB2 ports do you need? Do you need and stuff on the front panel of your case? Do you need specific display ports (or is that covered by your graphic card)?
    What about sound? What kind of speakers do you want to connect and which connection type do you want to use for them?


    Is the Network Interface important to you? There are differences in performance and costs between Intel and Realtek chipsets.


    Also if you plan to do the upgrade in a few months a Z370 mainboard might not be the right choice for you.
    Currently for that generation of Intel CPUs you only can get the z370 but in a few months the cheaper H and B versions of the mainboards will be released.
    Since the i5 8400 can not be overclocked (its not a K version) you actually dont need a Z board.
    Here you could save some money that you maybe can use to get a GTX 1070 instead of a GTX 1060.


    Edit by
    errr.... forget the stuff about the GTX 1070.... wtf happened to the prices these days? They are meanwhile more expensive than the GTX 1080 that I got 3 months ago.


    Maybe its worth to think about RAM at 2666Mhz. The CPU in its default settings would support 2666Mhz RAM (everything else is overclocking).
    With 2400Mhz you would actually run below the CPU specifications.
    But thats a matter of money.
    It might have impact on the performance in games (a few FPS more). The biggest performance increase due to faster ram would be if you compress or extract zip files or if you render stuff or do very memory intense calculations. You can find comparisons here:


    The difference isnt that big when you look at the performance.
    If you have the choice between 16GB slow RAM and 8 GB fast RAM then take the 16GB. But make sure that you take 2x8GB then in order to use them in dual channel mode (thats speed boost you would notice).
    1x16GB is slower and 4x4Gb does not make sense on these types of mainboards (and wouldnt be upgrade friendly).


    Generally I would assume that the RAM you have listed above would fit.
    But just to be 100% sure every RAM has a specific identification number. Once you decided on the mainboard it would be best to check the website of the mainboards manufacturer and look for the RAM compatibility list. See if you can find your choice of RAM in that list.
    There are some RAM modules which are only compatible with AMD (for some reason i dont understand).


    What CPU cooler do you have?
    I am asking because not every cooler fits on every CPU.
    Thats actually not a big problem because the i5 8400 comes with a stock cooler that even under full load should keep the temperature below 75°C.
    But... if you already have a better cooler it of course makes sense to use that one instead.



    The SSD is a charm... I have the same and I love it.
    I think all Z370 boards have a good M.2 support... I think the H and B boards also will provide good M.2 slots.
    You shouldnt think too much about if the M.2 slot on these boards is shielded or not. Unless you read/write EXTREME large amounts of data regulary on your disk you wont even notice a temperature problem with the NVMe drive (no matter if you have shielding or not).



    Something not covered yet... what PSU do you have?
    I wrote that your current PC is like 10 years old. I know that older PCs sometimes still have 300watt power supply and in very rare cases not even modern 6+2 connectors for graphic cards.

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  • oh and one more thing about your choice of graphic card
    its a nice choice of the gtx 1060, it has a nice turbo boost and good cooling. Most of the time you wont even hear the fans as until 60°C its passively cooled.
    with 27,5 cm length it should also fit into every PC case.

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    Only dead fish swim with the stream.
    Don't discuss with idiots. They only drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience there.


    This is ten percent luck,
    Twenty percent skill,
    Fifteen percent concentrated power of will,
    Five percent pleasure,
    Fifty percent pain,
    And a hundred percent reason to remember the name!

  • Time-frame for upgrade is rather short (few months) ... RL (read wife) is not against, so I not want wait too long :D (shorter time is better ...)
    MB choice was random (checked what my shop have for chosen CPU), in local shop there is 130E for this one
    I need USB slots on PC back only, and I need 4 slots (ideally 4xUSB2.0 and 2.USB3.0) - hotas needs 2 slots, mouse 1x and next one (one from 3.0) I use for phone (used as router on 4G internet ... have unlimited data there :D )
    Sound is ok only build in, I use headphones with microphone.
    Overclocking is nothing what I want to do now, if there in the future will be need for more graphic power, I can buy that 1070 card (they are really pricey atm ... :( ). ... Question is if go for version with 3 or 6 Gb of ram ... ED from what I have read like more gpu ram, so 6 can be for this game better choice even if there is 50% price difference ... 260 vs 390Eur ...
    CPU cooler which I have is Gelid Solutions Tranquillo with 12 cm noctua very silent ventilator (I think it is better as stock cooler)
    my power supply is Seasonic Energy Knight SS-500ET, T3 500W, here I'm not sure if it is enough for chosen GK and dunno about its plugs ...

  • hmmm
    ok... on the graphic card I would clearly advice to go with the 6gb version since modern games easily reach 3-4 vid memory on high and ultra settings.
    The difference between 3gb and 6gb version is not just the size of the video memory... the 3gb version also has a lower amount of shader units and should perform ~10% worse than the 6gb version (worse if the memory limit has reached).


    Your cooler is actually not bad. A single tower cooler is perfectly fine for that CPU. However, it depends on which version of the Gelid Solutions Tranquillo you have.
    The CPU fits into a LGA 1151 socket... this type of socket is supported since Rev. 3 of the Gelid Solutions Tranquillo.
    Earlier versions support up to socket 1150. I am not 100% sure about the exact differences in these specification or if this is just rebranding of the cooler to tell the customers that it supports socket 1151 aswell.
    If you still have information about which version of the cooler it is you can check its compatibility. Rev 3 and Rev 4 for sure work with that CPU + board. Earlier versions might also work but I wouldnt be able to guarantee that.
    But like I said... if it doesnt work... the i5 8400 comes with a stock cooler that you can savely use.
    Under full load it should keep the temperatures at 70-75°C. I sometimes reach 80-90°C on my 8700k under extreme loads while rendering stuff. As long your temps dont go over 95° for a longer period of time you should be fine. Thermal throttling starts at around 105-115°C so you ~40°C away from critical temps even under full load.
    The nuctua cooler you have is great. One of the best types of coolers available.
    I think even if you use the Intel stock cooler you can put the noctua fan on that. I think that would cool even better.


    Update on the Gelid Solutions Tranquillo: you can easily tell which version it is. Rev2 has this V shaped backside while Rev 3 and Rev 4 have an inward curved design

    If you have Rev3 or Rev4 you could even try putting 2 fans on that tower cooler in a push-pull configuration for additional cooling. (example below is for a liquid cooling radiator but the principle is the same)




    The PSU is perfect for that setup.
    The graphic card you have selected above requires one 8 pin (6+2) connector and thats exactly what this PSU has. You wont be able to put a 2nd graphic card into it and to be honest I wouldnt even advice to do that, given the fact that you would need a mainboard with SLI support and the games also would require to support SLI (which most games dont).
    If you ever want to upgrade to a more powerful graphic card in distant future you might also need to upgrade your PSU since e.g. GTX 1080 cards and higher require two of these connectors. But for this GTX 1060 its perfectly fine.
    And the 500 Watt is perfect the way it is. The graphic card will need 120Watt at full load and the CPU if I remember that correctly needs 65 Watts. To that you can add roundabout 100 Watt (thats just a guess, it depends on all your other devices and HDD) for the rest of the system. Overall 300 Watt.
    That PSU has a bronze certification, so about 80% efficiency.... you are not even getting close to the point where this PSU starts running inefficient.



    Regarding the board you have MANY options.
    You can get boards for 90€ already. Most boards have 4 USB 3.1 ports and 2 USB 2.0 ports. 6 SATA ports for HDDs/SSDs.
    The cheaper boards often just have one M.2 slot so putting a 2nd NVMe drive into the PC will only be possible if you have a PCIe card adapter. Question is if you ever want to put a 2nd NVMe drive into that PC (thats hard to predict).
    It really depends on what you need. Here is a small overview of all z370 boards and their features.
    Z370 Motherboards (LGA1151v2 for Intel 8th-Gen Coffee Lake CPUs) Comparison - Google Tabellen
    The Tomahawk you selected has a few advantages over the very cheap boards.
    It has relative good VRMs and a good heatsink design for those.
    It also had a pretty decent heatsink for its chipset.
    Most important it has a steel armor PCIe slot that is stable enough to hold heavy graphic cards.
    It has plenty of LED stuff if you care for that (bling bling). It also should have connectors for front USB and front audio.


    There is just one final question about the mainboard. Does it fit into your PC case?
    I know that question appears stupid... but you wouldnt believe how many people tried to put a ATX mainboart into mATX or mini-ITX case.

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    Only dead fish swim with the stream.
    Don't discuss with idiots. They only drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience there.


    This is ten percent luck,
    Twenty percent skill,
    Fifteen percent concentrated power of will,
    Five percent pleasure,
    Fifty percent pain,
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  • THX much OP! I would gladly add more thanks if single post allowed it :) . It's much more easier upgrade a PC with such detailed analysis.

  • np, if you have further questions i probably can help

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    Only dead fish swim with the stream.
    Don't discuss with idiots. They only drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience there.


    This is ten percent luck,
    Twenty percent skill,
    Fifteen percent concentrated power of will,
    Five percent pleasure,
    Fifty percent pain,
    And a hundred percent reason to remember the name!

  • The Coolermaster Hyper 212x Dual Fan CPU Cooler is literally the best traditional CPU cooler (i.e not liquid) on the market for it's size, performance and price. I have it thrown in mine and the noise my case produces is a VERY tolerable noise under load. Not quite to be a whisper but not loud enough to need to talk over my computer while under load. that said, i can't speak for avg temperature of my CPU under different circumstances, but i think it's good enough to where my system isn't affected by 30-40c temperatures playing Arma on a populated server. I also am not one of the people who have their computers on all the time. It saves energy and reduces undue wear on your system from idling for 8-10 hours or more. yeah there's "Standby" mode but it's just better to shut it down when you got to bed at night. I only run a single 1TB HD and my boot up times are around 30 seconds from a cold start.


    I will also mention that i have a full size ATX Asus board and the only grip i have with this particular cooler is that the arrangement of the RAM slots won't allow the second fan (in addition to the fact i don't wanna have to deal with cable management. It took me two hours to get my computer completely wired while maximizing airflow and reducing the mess of wires annnnd I don't plan on snipping those zip ties anytime soon...


    The Coolermaster Hyper 212X Dual fan is also VERY Overclock friendly if you're into that kind of kinky nonsense. I have factory OC on my AM3+ cpu at 4.20Ghz (because duh) and i don't have as many crashses or issues as others might


    This reminds me, i gotta go get a can of air.....

  • lol don't ask me, I use Win XP, that must say something

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  • But isnt the Hyper x212 a single Tower cooler?
    How can that be too big for ram slots?
    I would expect such problems from dual tower coolers or one single block coolers (which outperform single towers).


    I think that the coolermaster x212 is one of the best choices in that price category but if you just focus on cooling performance you can find better ones.
    e.g. the Noctua Nh-U14S is a really great performing single tower cooler. But it is also a multiple times more expensive than the coolermaster.


    Generally I think Noctua has the best set of air coolers on the market. Meanwhile you can buy even black Noctua fans for the NH-D15 that you can even customize. So you are not longer bound to the ugly brown default versions (which still perform much better than the fans of other companies).
    The NH15 since years belongs to the best air coolers but its dual tower design makes it big and also causes problems with high-profile RAM modules. I think the NH-D15S should be more compatible in this area due to the asymetric heatpipe design.


    I went with Thermalright Le Grand Macho RT which is cheaper than a dual tower cooler but offers nearly the same cooling performance (in some cases even better).
    That cooler also has a asymetric shape which prevents compatibility problems with RAM and the upper PCIe slot.
    This thing is a heavy beast of single tower block cooler. I think its the largest block you can put into your PC.


    The backwards shift of the heatpipes move the whole cooler closer towards the case and also a bit upwards. So there isnt any problem with the RAM.
    However, the space beween cooler and backside of the case is very thin. But that not really a disadvantage because it sits right infront of the 120mm case cooler (with only 1-2mm space) which blows the hot air out of my case. So its like having a push-pull configuration.
    The sheer size of that thing allows it to operate mostly passive or with just low air pressure. The default fan speed is set to just 300rpm which makes this very silent. On full load it goes up to 1300rpm which isnt loud either.
    With 50-60€ for it I considered it a well done invenstment since I get the cooling performance of a high-end double tower cooler at the costs of a mid range cooler.
    For a Noctua NH-D15 you at least have to pay 80-90€ and that for maybe 2-3°C difference.

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    Only dead fish swim with the stream.
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  • I have full ATX case (have there M4A77T/USB3 Asus MB) so there should be not issues (I hope :) ). But there is one other thing which I'm not sure about and it is windows which I have ... it was originally purchased in 2010 as Windows Home Premium CZ 64bit OEM (have installation CD) and is installed now as Win 10! on my 7200rpm HDD. I ofc want have system installed on new SSD (plus have mentioned old HDD in PC too) and this whole PC is practically new one ... question is: can be my windows used/transferred or not?


    EDIT: I've contacted local win support and they said that it should be doable. Technician suggested install Win7 on new PC, activate these (if troubles contact support) and then proceed with upgrade to Win10. .... hmm, this part of making new PC working may be not going easily :/

  • Well, to be honest I am not sure about windows.
    I had the same worries when I switched PCs... but well...


    Lets put it this way.
    I have read that you can not transfer a Windows 10 license that is based on a Windows 7 OEM installation because this is just a digital created key. This simply wont work.
    Installing Windows 7 and then doing an upgrade to Windows 10 might work. Microsoft is right about that. Officially these upgrades are no longer supposed to work (Microsoft announced that users can do these upgrades within 1 year after the Windows 10 release) but technically Microsoft never disabled the upgrade function. So the upgrade clearly will work. It will create a new digital license and activate Windows 10.
    That was the good news for you.
    Now to the bad news.
    When you Windows 7 disk was created, NVMe SSDs didnt exist. Therefore your Windows 7 does not have the drivers that it would require to be install on your 960 EVO.
    It simply wouldnt detect this SSD during the Windows installation. Windows 7 simply doesnt have the required drivers on the disk.


    Now you have multiple options:
    1. There are tools which allow you to create a Windows Boot USB stick and then you can update that Boot USB drive with NVMe drivers.


    2. And thats how I did it. I created a windows 10 USB boot drive (not windows 7) using the Media creation Tool that Microsoft offers. Thats the same tool you have used for the update from windows 7 to windows 10. I started the Windows 10 installation and at the point where it asked for the Windows 10 product key I have entered a Windows 7 OEM product key. Since an update some months ago Windows 10 also accepts Windows 7 keys. So I did a clean fresh Windows 10 installation right onto the NVMe SSD using a Windows 7 key.
    I am not sure if that works with keys that already have been used. I simply did buy a new Windows 7 OEM key online for 6€. You can get such old Windows 7 keys on Amazon, Ebay and other software trader sites. Meanwhile you also can buy Windows 10 keys for similar prices.
    The advantage is that you have a clean Windows 10 copy instead of an upgrade. The upgrades usually contain junk from windows 7.


    If you go with option 1 I would advice you to put the USB stick in a USB2.0 port (the black ones) because... well... Windows 7 also does not know what USB 3.0 is. These drivers are also missing on the original windows 7 disk.
    Another thing you need to consider when installing Windows on your PC is that you install it in UEFI mode. Just make sure that in the UEFI/BIOS the first boot device is set to your Samsung SSD and that it is labeled as UEFI. That might look different depending on which mainboard manufacturer you choose.
    Usually you should be able to set the boot order and also if the drive should boot as UEFI device. The UEFI setting is important because windows can boot faster and has a better file system on your drive.



    Btw. non-OEM versions of Windows 7 that were upgraded to Windows 10 dont just create a digital Windows 10 product key. They create a key that can be transfered to other PCs. You would have to call the Microsoft customer service and request a transferal (dunno how exactly they do that).

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    Only dead fish swim with the stream.
    Don't discuss with idiots. They only drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience there.


    This is ten percent luck,
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  • a very interesting thread :thumbup:


    and since we have some experts here, i need some information as well.


    as some of you might remember i am really fond the game series Wolfenstein. last year the latest part (Wolfenstein II - The new Colossus) was published and i was really excited about it. but unfortunately the requirements don't fit with my computer. one year ago i bought a new PC (around 650 €) and i expected that i can play such games, but now i'm confused.


    here are the minimum requirements for this game:
    CPU: Intel Core i7-3770/AMD FX-8350 or better
    RAM: 8 GB
    OS: Win7, 8.1, or 10 (64-Bit versions)
    VIDEO CARD: Nvidia GTX 770 4GB/AMD Radeon R9 290 4GB or better
    FREE DISK SPACE: 55 GB


    here is my hardware:
    OS: Win10
    mainboard: ASUS A68HM-PLUS
    CPU: AMD Quad-Core A8-6600K (from min 1,9 GHz to usually 3,9 GHz to max 4,2 GHz)
    RAM: 2 × Elixir 8 GB DIMM DDR3 (11-11-11-28 5-39-12-6 4T, whatever that means), with 2 × 800 MHz
    VIDEO CARD: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 Ti 2 GB
    SSD: Samsung 850 EVO 250 GB (really good choice, boot time is 30 seconds :cool: )


    here my questions: is it possible to play this game halfway comfortable or do i need some upgrades? i would expect a better video card would make it?

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  • i would upgrade your graphics card at the least, Denne. It'll run most stuff but it will be tough on your system overall. The general rule of thumb as far as "what do i upgrade to" is Nvidia has higher quality parts and performs better but at a much higher cost$. Radeon also produces quality cards, but it comes down to brand of manufacturer (asus, MSI, EVGA etc) and they are definitely more budget friendly. The RX580 4GB card runs about $220-$250 and it's about on par with a 1050 or 1060. Upgrade to what you need and not what you want. If you don't plan on mining bitcoins or doing VR (if greater than 4-cores), theres no reason for an 8GB monster video card that breaks your mobo.


    @OP-R8R Newegg sells the 212x with a second fan as an option as well as other various models with LEDs or different colors. i.e gimmicky stuff. When i built my PC, i placed the PSU upside down by accident which made wiring everything that much more difficult especially since i had the goal of reducing visible wires. Theres at least or 2 or 3 issues that preventing me from attaching that second fan because i placed the PSU in wrong. I can't remember if i ever went back to fix it. i really don't need the second fan because i'm not Overclocking and in the end, it'll be more hassle than it's worth trying to attach it then recombobulate the 4-pin connector i had to unnecessarily reroute because my dumb ass doesn't know how to wire a computer lol. It would be easier to take a picture and upload it that try and describe it

  • if you dont use the fan thats ok... the difference in temps is just a few degrees... not much to worry about


    about the wolfenstein stuff... well like portalearth wrote the graphic card could be a problem. Putting the speed difference between gtx 750 and gtx 770 aside the 2gb video memory might be a problem. In the game your graphic card will probably stutter a bit because it tries to load additional textures while removing other textures.


    The minimum requirements for the CPU are also not met. Eventhough the i7-3770 has a lower clock speed compared to a A8-6600K it outperforms it by more than 50%.


    You can try your luck but i have my doubts that you will have much joy playing the game.

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    Only dead fish swim with the stream.
    Don't discuss with idiots. They only drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience there.


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    Fifteen percent concentrated power of will,
    Five percent pleasure,
    Fifty percent pain,
    And a hundred percent reason to remember the name!

  • you definitely want to think about putting more money into your graphics card in general. Your wallet and gaming experience will thank you. I'm not saying you selected a bad card, but it's something i always tell people they should go all out as much as possible on the graphics car

  • most games put their focus on rendering stuff - therefore they need a good graphic card
    thats the main focus nowadays


    however some games are more focused on CPU performance
    they are the minority but they exist

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    Only dead fish swim with the stream.
    Don't discuss with idiots. They only drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience there.


    This is ten percent luck,
    Twenty percent skill,
    Fifteen percent concentrated power of will,
    Five percent pleasure,
    Fifty percent pain,
    And a hundred percent reason to remember the name!