Help Me Build My PC Catch-All

Citizen86 wrote:
MannishBoy wrote:

So after reading the 290 reviews, it seems like a card to wait on the OEMs to get their own cooling solutions/non-reference designs on. That fan noise could potentially be eliminated with a better cooler solution.

I only read the HardOCP review, but I don't think they talked about fan noise, it was the 95C heat that is a little scary. Apparently that's reference and safe, but I can imagine that it would heat your case up so much.... wouldn't be so much fun seeing your CPU raise 10 degrees because you stick in a new GPU.

Anandtech talks about the 290 getting a last minute fan speed increase in drivers for competitive reasons, from max speed of 40% to 47% so that it thermal throttles less. So it looks pretty noisy to me.

MannishBoy wrote:
Citizen86 wrote:
MannishBoy wrote:

So after reading the 290 reviews, it seems like a card to wait on the OEMs to get their own cooling solutions/non-reference designs on. That fan noise could potentially be eliminated with a better cooler solution.

I only read the HardOCP review, but I don't think they talked about fan noise, it was the 95C heat that is a little scary. Apparently that's reference and safe, but I can imagine that it would heat your case up so much.... wouldn't be so much fun seeing your CPU raise 10 degrees because you stick in a new GPU.

Anandtech talks about the 290 getting a last minute fan speed increase in drivers for competitive reasons, from max speed of 40% to 47% so that it thermal throttles less. So it looks pretty noisy to me.

Hmm, that does look noisier... and doesn't seem to help much with the thermals... come oooooon aftermarket coolers

Ah, okay, that's explaining why AMD is able to do better than the 780 for less money: they're willing to go to higher run temps, and to emit a lot more exhaust heat. From a gamer perspective, this is typically fine, but pay attention to the cooling and noise levels. There's a reason why NVidia used to get pounded for shipping cards that sounded like hair dryers. If you're going to buy an aftermarket cooler, remember to tally its cost in your mental calculation of price/performance.

If you're using it constantly, like for compute, there's also run cost to consider. In actual practice, though, I'm not sure this is much of an issue. Most gamers won't care, because they won't use it enough to matter, and the AMD chips are so much stronger for actual compute work that the power bill will almost certainly be worth it. They're much better than the consumer NVidia cards in that space.

Citizen86 wrote:
MannishBoy wrote:
Citizen86 wrote:
MannishBoy wrote:

So after reading the 290 reviews, it seems like a card to wait on the OEMs to get their own cooling solutions/non-reference designs on. That fan noise could potentially be eliminated with a better cooler solution.

I only read the HardOCP review, but I don't think they talked about fan noise, it was the 95C heat that is a little scary. Apparently that's reference and safe, but I can imagine that it would heat your case up so much.... wouldn't be so much fun seeing your CPU raise 10 degrees because you stick in a new GPU.

Anandtech talks about the 290 getting a last minute fan speed increase in drivers for competitive reasons, from max speed of 40% to 47% so that it thermal throttles less. So it looks pretty noisy to me.

Hmm, that does look noisier... and doesn't seem to help much with the thermals... come oooooon aftermarket coolers

The reason you don't see much change with the thermals is because the card throttles itself at 95C so that it doesn't exceed that temperature. Setting the fan at a lower speed just means it's going to throttle sooner and performance will be worse. They need better cooling so the card can run at its full potential.

I am thinking of picking up a new GTX 770 to upgrade from my current GTX 570, and I was contemplating using my 570 as a dedicated PhysX card. Does anyone else do this? Are the performance gains worth power consumption?

Rumor has it that the 290 (non x) will list for $399. That is a game changing price.

edit

not a rumor.. confirmed..

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2013/...

Our performance results could not be any more clear. The AMD Radeon R9 290 provides the same gameplay experience and performance as the GeForce GTX 780 in a single-display gaming environment. The R9 290 provided the same performance as the GTX 780, and sometimes was even faster in terms of raw framerates. It is also clear that the Radeon R9 290 is a big upgrade from the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition and GeForce GTX 770.

This is an impressive release from AMD.. especially since..

Take some of the R9 290X specifications and scale those down to the R9 290. As previously mentioned, not all qualities of the 290X have been scaled down though. Many qualities remain at full R9 290X strength. The same GPU process, and transistor count is present on the R9 290 as the R9 290X. The same memory bus configuration is in place. You will find 4GB of GDDR5 on a 512-bit memory bus at 5GHz, just like the R9 290X. That means the memory bandwidth is exactly the same between the two video cards at 320GB/sec.

You will also find the same number of ROPs; 64 ROPs on both video cards. The R9 290 is in many ways like the R9 290X, and should provide excellent high resolution and AA performance.

The only thing I don't like about it is the heat. They say their review card hits 95C pretty constantly. I get that those temps are within spec for the card, but... I don't like it. I've got my case set up in a way that keeps my 670's at about 75C or below. 20C is a huge difference in heat output. Don't know if I can do those in my house in the summer time.

EriktheRed wrote:

I am thinking of picking up a new GTX 770 to upgrade from my current GTX 570, and I was contemplating using my 570 as a dedicated PhysX card. Does anyone else do this? Are the performance gains worth power consumption?

With a newer Nvidia card, I don't know if it's necessary. I think you should be able to enable full PhysX without turning down any graphic settings on all games that have it at 1080p, probably even 2560x1440 if you have a monitor that size.

Thin_J wrote:

The only thing I don't like about it is the heat. They say their review card hits 95C pretty constantly. I get that those temps are within spec for the card, but... I don't like it. I've got my case set up in a way that keeps my 670's at about 75C or below. 20C is a huge difference in heat output. Don't know if I can do those in my house in the summer time.

Best wait for non-reference cooling then.. downside is the companies will probably jack those versions up price wise fairly high.. I'm probably going to water cool mine as soon as I do my research and figure out what setup makes the most sense.. I'm not big on high maintenance water cooling but I understand its gotten loads better with Corsair's cases as you can easily mount the units outside for easy servicing.

Couple really adventurous types have bolted on 7970's aftermarket coolers and saw substantial temp drops (68-78) as well as noise @ load... But the VRM cooling right now in those isnt up to snuff and the cards VRM's are going nutso. I'm sure the Aftermarket Air cooling guys will eventually update their products for 290 specific cooling.

Citizen86 wrote:
EriktheRed wrote:

I am thinking of picking up a new GTX 770 to upgrade from my current GTX 570, and I was contemplating using my 570 as a dedicated PhysX card. Does anyone else do this? Are the performance gains worth power consumption?

With a newer Nvidia card, I don't know if it's necessary. I think you should be able to enable full PhysX without turning down any graphic settings on all games that have it at 1080p, probably even 2560x1440 if you have a monitor that size.

That 570 will be overpowered for it, but it's not like it's going to run full bore when used as a dedicated PhysX card. I'd totally use it for that purpose assuming you have a 750W PSU or higher (You might be able to get away with a 650W PSU). Looks like you can get $75 to $100 for them on Ebay. To me, that wouldn't be worth the hastle. I'd just use it as a PhysX card for fun. Whenever you have a game that has those different levels of PhysX settings, you'd be able to just crank it knowing it wouldn't affect your performance.

I played around with my SLI setup a little bit with Borderland 2 going between SLI and a dedicated PhysX card. In the end, just using SLI worked fine. I don't know what the actual performance hit PhysX will cause when pushing a graphics card to the limit.

Hope its OK if I ask this question here.

I installed my OS to a 128GB solid state drive, leaving little room for games. I frequently move my current game to the drive using symbolic links from the main HDD to avoid uninstalls/re-installs. My question is, will there be a speed hit using symbolic links vs installing the game to the drive? That is, does it have to access the HDD before each read, reducing the speed of the ssd?

Schmutzli wrote:

Hope its OK if I ask this question here.

I installed my OS to a 128GB solid state drive, leaving little room for games. I frequently move my current game to the drive using symbolic links from the main HDD to avoid uninstalls/re-installs. My question is, will there be a speed hit using symbolic links vs installing the game to the drive? That is, does it have to access the HDD before each read, reducing the speed of the ssd?

Nope.

tuffalobuffalo wrote:
Schmutzli wrote:

ssd

Nope. :)

Great! Thanks.

Battlefield 4 went from 2 minute load times to 20 seconds, so I guess that bears out.

Schmutzli wrote:
tuffalobuffalo wrote:
Schmutzli wrote:

ssd

Nope. :)

Great! Thanks.

Battlefield 4 went from 2 minute load times to 20 seconds, so I guess that bears out.

That's the way to always get your vehicle of choice at the beginning of the round

Quick Windows 8.1 question: Did they improve the multi monitor support from the release candidate versions? I have 3 monitors on my desk. There is one 2560x1440 monitor in the middle with 2 1920x1080 monitors on either side. Is it possible to boot such that the metro screen with tiles displays on a side monitor, the regular old desktop with start button displays on the middle monitor, and the third monitor just displays extra desktop space?

My question is, will there be a speed hit using symbolic links vs installing the game to the drive? That is, does it have to access the HDD before each read, reducing the speed of the ssd?

Well, it would, but Windows does a good job of caching drive data in memory, so while it takes a teeny extra fraction of a second to parse its way through the memory structures related to the shortcut, it's not going to be constrained by the physical speed of the drive.

There is, in other words, a little extra overhead, but it's so tiny that it would probably be impossible to measure.

Just saw there is a fluid bearing Zalman HSF for $10 AR @ Newegg that seems to review pretty well. It's a degree or two off the 212 EVO, but at $10, that's still a pretty good deal.

Can't wait for my new parts to get here. AMD, I will miss you and your decent chips at good prices but C'MON! You got nathin' I want right now. I'll come back and check in on you, AMD, when my Intel CPU gives up its ghost. (hopefully not soon).

BTW do Intel CPU i5s come with CPU paste or a strip? Or do I have to buy Arctic Silver separate or something.

BTW do Intel CPU i5s come with CPU paste or a strip?

The stock cooler will come with some thermal stuff pre-applied. You just basically stick the four posts through the holes in the motherboard, and it'll goop the processor up properly. Aftermarket coolers will come with a small tube of something: if you want something better, Arctic Silver is really excellent, and not terribly expensive. It's not the absolute best goop on the market in terms of thermal transfer, but it's not too far off, and it never dries out, so it's good for the life of the chip.

But if you're using the stock cooler, don't bother, the TIM on it is fine.

AMD, I will miss you and your decent chips at good prices

I miss them too, and I so very strongly hope they get back in the game. I'm happy to see that they're doing well on the video card side, lately.

MannishBoy wrote:

Just saw there is a fluid bearing Zalman HSF for $10 AR @ Newegg that seems to review pretty well. It's a degree or two off the 212 EVO, but at $10, that's still a pretty good deal.

For ten dollars, that's a huge chunk of metal. With heatpipes, even. Shame it's via a rebate, though, I hate those.

Malor wrote:
BTW do Intel CPU i5s come with CPU paste or a strip?

The stock cooler will come with some thermal stuff pre-applied. You just basically stick the four posts through the holes in the motherboard, and it'll goop the processor up properly. Aftermarket coolers will come with a small tube of something: if you want something better, Arctic Silver is really excellent, and not terribly expensive. It's not the absolute best goop on the market in terms of thermal transfer, but it's not too far off, and it never dries out, so it's good for the life of the chip.

But if you're using the stock cooler, don't bother, the TIM on it is fine.

AMD, I will miss you and your decent chips at good prices

I miss them too, and I so very strongly hope they get back in the game. I'm happy to see that they're doing well on the video card side, lately.

Yup. I'm still rocking my XFX Radeon 6870 vidja kard. I really hope they come back with a great alt to Intel's expensive and powerful chips.

EDIT: Hmm, I've read on teh best tech blog in the world (this thread! kudos!) AMD is building stuff for consoles?

Malor wrote:

Shame it's via a rebate, though, I hate those.

Haha. I hate them too. I almost refuse to acknowledge them in protest, but in the end, if I happen to buy something with a rebate, I'll send the damn thing in.

Might be some trouble with those new ATI cards:

There is a downside to this performance, however: noise. AMD originally planned for the 290 to go up against Nvidia's $399 GTX 770. The 290 handily beats the 770—but thanks to Nvidia's price cuts, the 770 is no longer a $399 card. To keep the 290's performance looking good, AMD has had to make its fans spin faster, giving it more thermal headroom and allowing its GPU to run faster.

This allows the 290 to more or less match the $499 GTX 780's performance (while still being $100 cheaper), but it also means that it's a noisy beast. Both 290 and 290X suck down a lot of power, too.

Worse still, Tom's Hardware is reporting that retail cards are struggling to run as fast as they should. 290X cards are meant to run the GPU at 1GHz and the fan at no more than 40 percent while keeping below a temperature of 94°C. The site tested retail cards that are dropping to just 727MHz. These cards are also seeing their fans run at more than 40 percent as they struggle to stay below their thermal limit.

This means that in practice, the R9 290 review units are running faster than at least some R9 290X retail units.

AMD has told Tom's Hardware that there's something wrong with the retail cards, but at the moment there's some uncertainty over just how well they perform.

EDIT: Hmm, I've read on teh best tech blog in the world (this thread! kudos!) AMD is building stuff for consoles?

Um, not directly, they licensed chip designs to both Microsoft and Sony. AMD CPU/GPU combos are powering both the XBox One and the PS4. But the companies bought the rights to the design, so AMD doesn't actually make the chips.

So, there's a couple things going on there. The beta drivers that were available when the 290X cards were launched and reviewed locked the fan speed at 40%. The cards throttle at 95C so if the 40% fan rate isn't enough to keep the card below that, it fails to reach it's potential. A few review sites have said they plan to revisit their 290X reviews with newer drivers and higher fan speeds to see if/how they change. I'd also expect the 290X to generate a bit more heat than it's little brother so a simple fan speed increase isn't likely to solve the issue like it does for the 290.

The reviews being done on the 290 cards are newer and limit the fan to a max of 47%. The reviews I've seen show that's the sweet spot for that card. If the fan is reduced to 40% (like the older driver did) then performance is less than it could be. With the newer driver and the slightly higher 47% fan speed limit it's able to perform at the desired 947Mhz clock speed. Manually setting the fan speed to 100% has no increased performance.

One thing that's completely uncontested is that the reference cooler is a noisy piece of sh*t and provides insufficient cooling. I don't think we'll see the 290X run at it's 1000Mhz clock without a better aftermarket cooler... and until we see those numbers there's no telling what the real performance difference is between a 290 and 290X. What is known is that the 290 is a pretty amazing value proposition since it matches or exceeds the GTX 780 for $100 less.

Malor wrote:
EDIT: Hmm, I've read on teh best tech blog in the world (this thread! kudos!) AMD is building stuff for consoles?

Um, not directly, they licensed chip designs to both Microsoft and Sony. AMD CPU/GPU combos are powering both the XBox One and the PS4. But the companies bought the rights to the design, so AMD doesn't actually make the chips.

But they are producing chips inside their consoles based on AMD's designs?

But they are producing chips inside their consoles based on AMD's designs?

Yes, absolutely. They're using relatively slow CPU cores, but a lot of them, and then each has a different variant of AMD's onboard video.

All XBox and PS4 gaming in the next generation will be running on AMD CPUs and AMD graphics.

Both the 290 and the 290x need better cooling.. there is nothing wrong with physically with the card. You can achieve the rated and above rated performance running at Ultra (which [H] has done for all their reviews) but note that naturally this means the card will heat up and consume more power.

I suspect we will see aftermarket cooling show up ASAP as the various OEM's move to fill this void. Some people have watercooled their 290x's and the headroom on the card is amazing... and the temps stay very reasonable for the performance. So right now the reference cooling is actually holding BACK the card from its true potential simply because of the heat... even at Ultra BIOS levels.

And its not the GPU or the Memory that is the issue with heat.. its the VRM's

It's been a long time, but I seem to remember ATI X900 and X1900 cards running at over 100deg according to PC Gamer.

Quick question for a friend. Will a GTX 760 work in a PCI E 2.1 slot? I know the 760 is 3.0 so I'm working if it will bottleneck with 2.1 or not work at all.

TempestBlayze wrote:

Quick question for a friend. Will a GTX 760 work in a PCI E 2.1 slot? I know the 760 is 3.0 so I'm working if it will bottleneck with 2.1 or not work at all.

It will work fine. Tests done on the different PCIe versions have always shown performance differences so minimal they're not even worth considering.