Which components should I upgrade in order to speed up my system?

Hi, i have had my current pc for a while now and i have just recently upgraded my GPU from two gtx 660's to one gtx 1060, however my current system is getting a bit slow in general and when loading applications it also freezes a lot. So i'm not entirely sure which component'(s) I should replace to speed it up, i was thinking the CPU or the swapping my HDD's for a faster SSD but i don't want to waste money on something that will only give me a marginal improvement. If you could give me advice on how to upgrade my system that would be greatly appreciated, thanks.

System specs:
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme6
CPU: Intel Core i5 3570K
RAM: (DDR3), Corsair 4GB (X2), Kingston 2GB (X2)
GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB
HDD's
WDC WD5000AZRX-00A8LB0 (500GB)
WDC WD15EADS-00S2B0 (1.5TB)
(C drive) ST1000DM003-1ER162 (1TB)
OS: Windows 10
Reply to jameskennedy
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  1. jameskennedy said:
    Hi, i have had my current pc for a while now and i have just recently upgraded my GPU from two gtx 660's to one gtx 1060, however my current system is getting a bit slow in general and when loading applications it also freezes a lot. So i'm not entirely sure which component'(s) I should replace to speed it up, i was thinking the CPU or the swapping my HDD's for a faster SSD but i don't want to waste money on something that will only give me a marginal improvement. If you could give me advice on how to upgrade my system that would be greatly appreciated, thanks.

    System specs:
    Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme6
    CPU: Intel Core i5 3570K
    RAM: (DDR3), Corsair 4GB (X2), Kingston 2GB (X2)
    GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB
    HDD's
    WDC WD5000AZRX-00A8LB0 (500GB)
    WDC WD15EADS-00S2B0 (1.5TB)
    (C drive) ST1000DM003-1ER162 (1TB)
    OS: Windows 10


    SSD for sure. What are the timings/speed of the RAM?

    Also, maybe the most important, what is your budget for upgrades?
    Reply to LanzoCommando
  2. well freezing isn't going to go away unless you figure out what it is. could be a heating issue, dying hard drive, corrupted windows.

    As said, what is your budget to upgrade, although RAM time has nothing to do with anything in the world.
    Reply to getochkn
  3. LanzoCommando said:
    jameskennedy said:
    Hi, i have had my current pc for a while now and i have just recently upgraded my GPU from two gtx 660's to one gtx 1060, however my current system is getting a bit slow in general and when loading applications it also freezes a lot. So i'm not entirely sure which component'(s) I should replace to speed it up, i was thinking the CPU or the swapping my HDD's for a faster SSD but i don't want to waste money on something that will only give me a marginal improvement. If you could give me advice on how to upgrade my system that would be greatly appreciated, thanks.

    System specs:
    Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme6
    CPU: Intel Core i5 3570K
    RAM: (DDR3), Corsair 4GB (X2), Kingston 2GB (X2)
    GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB
    HDD's
    WDC WD5000AZRX-00A8LB0 (500GB)
    WDC WD15EADS-00S2B0 (1.5TB)
    (C drive) ST1000DM003-1ER162 (1TB)
    OS: Windows 10


    SSD for sure. What are the timings/speed of the RAM?

    Also, maybe the most important, what is your budget for upgrades?


    My RAM timings are
    Corsair:1600 MHz
    Kingston:1333 MHz
    My budget is £250-300 max for CPU and £150-200 for one or two SSD's
    Reply to jameskennedy
  4. 1.run some chkdsk on your drives to make sure no bad sectors are showing up
    2. defrag your drives.

    Since your thinking of upgrading, I would suggest;
    Looking into ram upgrades, your board supports: 4 x DDR3 DIMM slots, DDR3 2800+(OC)/2400(OC)/2133(OC)/1866(OC)/1600/1333/1066 non-ECC, un-buffered, I would get rid of your 4gb and 2gb and put some fresh 16GB 4x4gb DDR3-1600 in there having a mix of ram is not optimal. A nice 4x4 set will be much smoother and lower your pagefile.sys file on your hard drive in size thus making it run smoother and faster.something like CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9 for 121.99$
    an SSD would make your OS snap that o/s so very true, clone you current drive to it and be done! 500gb aren't all that expensive especially if you wait for a special, SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 500GB SATA III 3-D Vertical Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MZ-75E500B/AM 182.99$
    Last I would consider a CPU upgrade not that there is anything wrong with your I5 3570K but you could get more power ouot of an Intel Core i7-3770K Quad-Core Processor 3.5 GHz 8 MB Cache LGA 1155 - BX80637I73770K for 453$

    just thoughts on your question. you failed to mentioned your power supply what is it looking like ?
    Reply to The Paladin
  5. ah your British... sorry missed that post as I was posting myself.
    then looking at ariapc.co.uk real quick there is 16GB (2x8GB) Corsair Vengeance Jet Black Low Profile 1600MHz CL10 DDR3 Dual/Quad Channel Kit [CML16GX3M2A1600C10] £97.20 inc. VAT

    and SSD 500GB Samsung 850 EVO Solid State Drive - MZ-75E500BW/EU for £142.80 inc. VAT
    Reply to The Paladin
  6. Get the same brand-same speed of RAM always, to avoid issues... Your system is more than likely running at the lower, 1333. Not bad but also not great by any means. Check this link out as a ref for RAM choices, BUT can probabaly be found cheaper on eBAY in the UK: http://uk.crucial.com/gbr/en/compatible-upgrade-for/ASRock/z77-extreme6#memoryResults

    I'd recommend 8GB min, 16GB is the "new" ideal amount for any gaming rig now. 1600 speed will do, as the difference between it an DDR3 1866 is not substantial enough to warrant paying a much higher price if you're on a budget.

    And yes, a SSD for your OS will improve things and then dividing/placing the non-OS programs/folders/items on the remaining drives you have. You may want to run ERROR-CHECKING on those other drives firstly, especially if they are dated... Also, doing some Windows OS maintenance will help on your existing drives by running the following on ALL DRIVES; Disk Cleanup, Disk Defragmenter and download and run CC Cleaner.
    Reply to Sam Hain
  7. The Paladin said:
    1.run some chkdsk on your drives to make sure no bad sectors are showing up
    2. defrag your drives.

    Since your thinking of upgrading, I would suggest;
    Looking into ram upgrades, your board supports: 4 x DDR3 DIMM slots, DDR3 2800+(OC)/2400(OC)/2133(OC)/1866(OC)/1600/1333/1066 non-ECC, un-buffered, I would get rid of your 4gb and 2gb and put some fresh 16GB 4x4gb DDR3-1600 in there having a mix of ram is not optimal. A nice 4x4 set will be much smoother and lower your pagefile.sys file on your hard drive in size thus making it run smoother and faster.something like CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9 for 121.99$
    an SSD would make your OS snap that o/s so very true, clone you current drive to it and be done! 500gb aren't all that expensive especially if you wait for a special, SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 500GB SATA III 3-D Vertical Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MZ-75E500B/AM 182.99$
    Last I would consider a CPU upgrade not that there is anything wrong with your I5 3570K but you could get more power ouot of an Intel Core i7-3770K Quad-Core Processor 3.5 GHz 8 MB Cache LGA 1155 - BX80637I73770K for 453$

    just thoughts on your question. you failed to mentioned your power supply what is it looking like ?


    Thanks, for the detailed reply, I have run chkdsk and all of my drives are healthy with no bad sectors, i have Glary utilities that defrags my drives every week so they are fine. i'll probably go with your recommendation of switching to the vengeance RAM, however what real world improvements will I actually see from this upgrade, I mainly browse on chrome and game. I'm not going to upgrade my CPU to the i7- 3770K as it's quite expensive. The samsung SSD looks affordable but would it be worth switching it for a 1TB version with the extra price. My PSU is a EVGA 750W SuperNOVA NEX750B Bronze.
    Reply to jameskennedy
  8. yes I would go ram and ssd and see how it turns out, also run HWINFO on your system to see temps on CPU/GPU, run a couple of minute a game then exit game and look at HIGH and LOW indicator for CPU/GPU make sure nothing running amok there (throttling ?)
    Reply to The Paladin
  9. before every just assumes its ram because they're running 2 different kinds, that doesn't automatically mean its the RAM. Honestly, I've ran miss matched ram sets with more success than failure for almost 30 years. if you're convinced it's the ram, they could remove 1 chip and try the solo chip. Everything was fine before they upgraded GPu's, so not sure why everyone is focused on their mismatched RAM chips.

    What PSU do you have? Did you uninstall your old drivers before putting the new card in?
    Reply to getochkn
  10. getochkn said:
    before every just assumes its ram because they're running 2 different kinds, that doesn't automatically mean its the RAM. Honestly, I've ran miss matched ram sets with more success than failure for almost 30 years. if you're convinced it's the ram, they could remove 1 chip and try the solo chip. Everything was fine before they upgraded GPu's, so not sure why everyone is focused on their mismatched RAM chips.

    What PSU do you have? Did you uninstall your old drivers before putting the new card in?


    I'm probably going to upgrade to the RAM anyway, but do you think i will get noticeably better performance from the upgrade, i.e. better FPS in games and more chrome tabs open.
    I have a EVGA 750W SuperNOVA NEX750B Bronze. I believe I did not uninstall the drivers before installing the gtx 1060 however, I think geforce experience did that for me when I installed the new driver.
    Reply to jameskennedy
  11. you already have 12GB of RAM. It will do nothing for FPS at all going to 16GB. Zero. If everything was ok before the GPU upgrade, then a clean drive wipe might be in order.
    Reply to getochkn
  12. The Paladin said:
    yes I would go ram and ssd and see how it turns out, also run HWINFO on your system to see temps on CPU/GPU, run a couple of minute a game then exit game and look at HIGH and LOW indicator for CPU/GPU make sure nothing running amok there (throttling ?)


    Agree with this.

    1. SSD with a fresh install of OS / current drivers (DONT install a VGA driver, just use your GPU's current release)
    2. Then RAM. *get faster RAM, 2X4 or 2X8, or a second match set of 1600mhz to match the higher speed you have now, not a fan of mixing RAM brands/speeds/etc
    3. Then if still no go run the monitoring software to branch out and try to find the issue.

    I don't think you'll make it to step 3 though if you do 1 and 2. Good luck!
    Reply to LanzoCommando
  13. jameskennedy said:
    but i don't want to waste money on something that will only give me a marginal improvement.


    Yet everyone insists buying more ram will fix your problem. The difference between 1333 ram and 1600 ram in gaming? Zero. None. But I'm in the minority here and everyone is fixed on your ram being the issue, so your call. I'm done fighting the majority mob.
    Reply to getochkn
  14. ^ LoL.

    He says his system is slow IN GENERAL and freezes trying to start applications (RAM or disk errors). Nobody is talking about the difference in FPS between 1333 and 1600 RAM.

    What we are saying is maybe mixing RAM isn't the best idea? Or at least I am. And why would you match the slower set? I can promise I noticed a difference in my GENERAL SYSTEM SPEED by going SSD and 2400 RAM.

    But hey. That's just me.

    1. SSD with fresh install of Windows.
    2. RAM
    3. Troubleshooting.

    ZERO to do with games.
    Reply to LanzoCommando
  15. getochkn said:
    before every just assumes its ram because they're running 2 different kinds, that doesn't automatically mean its the RAM. Honestly, I've ran miss matched ram sets with more success than failure for almost 30 years. if you're convinced it's the ram, they could remove 1 chip and try the solo chip. Everything was fine before they upgraded GPu's, so not sure why everyone is focused on their mismatched RAM chips.

    What PSU do you have? Did you uninstall your old drivers before putting the new card in?


    Correct, mismatched RAM *does* frequently work together. But someone who is posting here with a problem *already has a problem*. The number of people having heart attacks right now is a very low percentage, but the percentage of people currently in emergency rooms with chest pain symptoms that are having heart attacks right now is a much, much higher percentage. When X person is in a hospital with severe chest pain, "most people aren't having heart attacks!" is not a very good diagnostic procedure.

    In this case, we know *something* is wrong because the person is posting about a problem. In that case, we go from the most likely/least expensive solutions before we address the less likely/most expensive ones. The first obvious thing to look at is mismatched RAM timings as it's both the most likely problem from the behavior given and likely the least expensive problem that is the easiest to test. This is how triage is supposed to work for PC repair.

    So the fact that mismatched RAM will work together very frequently is irrelevant when faced with an actual problem. *Every* part in a PC is less likely to fail than work properly, should we send the OP on his way saying "most computer components work, so you probably don't have a problem?"
    Reply to DSzymborski
  16. Well taking our the 2x2 sticks and running the system and seeing what is happening would be a good pre-diagnostic step rather than telling them to buy more RAM, buy more RAM.
    Reply to getochkn
  17. I wouldn't buy RAM first either, and definitely dropping the 2X2 mismatched set, and seeing what happens, would be a good idea, BUT he is asking what are ways to speed up his general system stuff, meaning more "snappy" type applications and quicker loading, so what are the best ways to accomplish this?

    SSDs and FASTER/BETTER RAM.

    So, logically, if a dude is asking what to upgrade, that's what we would recommend no?
    Reply to LanzoCommando
  18. Faster RAM isn't going to speed the system in any measurable way. Do you think 1333 vs 1600 is something anyone notices other than some synthetic benchmark? I'd reinstall windows honestly as the first step. Considering they have a 3xxx series chip, it may have been a while since they wiped their system. They didn't even uninstall the old drivers first as stated between video card swaps.

    anyways, I'm done.
    Reply to getochkn
  19. getochkn said:
    Faster RAM isn't going to speed the system in any measurable way. Do you think 1333 vs 1600 is something anyone notices other than some synthetic benchmark? I'd reinstall windows honestly as the first step. Considering they have a 3xxx series chip, it may have been a while since they wiped their system. They didn't even uninstall the old drivers first as stated between video card swaps.

    anyways, I'm done.


    Of course not, but if you're going to match the RAM why would you go with the lower speed? Will I notice a difference in 2400 and 1600? Pretty sure, but I already answered that above as well.

    You took on this whole RAM war yourself.

    1. SSD with a fresh Windows install and only the 8GB 1600.
    2. Not "snappy enough" then speed up the RAM or get some with better timings.
    3. Move on into other options or upgrades.

    1 and 2 are the cheapest options with the largest effect.
    Reply to LanzoCommando
  20. LanzoCommando said:
    getochkn said:
    Faster RAM isn't going to speed the system in any measurable way. Do you think 1333 vs 1600 is something anyone notices other than some synthetic benchmark? I'd reinstall windows honestly as the first step. Considering they have a 3xxx series chip, it may have been a while since they wiped their system. They didn't even uninstall the old drivers first as stated between video card swaps.

    anyways, I'm done.


    Of course not, but if you're going to match the RAM why would you go with the lower speed? Will I notice a difference in 2400 and 1600? Pretty sure, but I already answered that above as well.

    You took on this whole RAM war yourself.

    1. SSD with a fresh Windows install and only the 8GB 1600.
    2. Not "snappy enough" then speed up the RAM or get some with better timings.
    3. Move on into other options or upgrades.

    1 and 2 are the cheapest options with the largest effect.



    I've just bought a Corsair Force Series LS 60GB SSD, and i'm planning to migrate my OS to it and use it solely as a boot drive. I'm also going to ditch the slower RAM for another set of Corsair 2X4GB and see how that goes.
    Reply to jameskennedy
  21. Should have bought a bigger drive. Windows and a few updates and you're 40-50GB gone already and that drive is full.
    Reply to getochkn
  22. getochkn said:
    Should have bought a bigger drive. Windows and a few updates and you're 40-50GB gone already and that drive is full.


    What size would you recommend for Windows 10 only drive?
    Reply to jameskennedy
  23. jameskennedy said:
    getochkn said:
    Should have bought a bigger drive. Windows and a few updates and you're 40-50GB gone already and that drive is full.


    What size would you recommend for Windows 10 only drive?


    125 or so. SSDs work better with headroom anyway and those size drives are not expensive. Buy it now or pay the price later...in frustration AND money.
    Reply to LanzoCommando
  24. LanzoCommando said:
    jameskennedy said:
    getochkn said:
    Should have bought a bigger drive. Windows and a few updates and you're 40-50GB gone already and that drive is full.


    What size would you recommend for Windows 10 only drive?


    125 or so. SSDs work better with headroom anyway and those size drives are not expensive. Buy it now or pay the price later...in frustration AND money.


    Ya, I have 120 and almost wish I went 250GB. Even with 120 you have to be careful that nothing gets downloaded to it, all your pic's and documents are switched over, etc.
    Reply to getochkn
  25. getochkn said:
    LanzoCommando said:
    jameskennedy said:
    getochkn said:
    Should have bought a bigger drive. Windows and a few updates and you're 40-50GB gone already and that drive is full.


    What size would you recommend for Windows 10 only drive?


    125 or so. SSDs work better with headroom anyway and those size drives are not expensive. Buy it now or pay the price later...in frustration AND money.


    Ya, I have 120 and almost wish I went 250GB. Even with 120 you have to be careful that nothing gets downloaded to it, all your pic's and documents are switched over, etc.


    I've got a 250 pretty much for that reason. Windows, monitoring software, a couple core programs, and headroom. I think 250 is a little overkill but I splurged on a nvme Samsung and that's the smallest they had anyway I think. Hell I can't remember. Got caught up in the hype and pulled the trigger on it.

    Just picked up a second M.2 Samsung 850 evo for my secondary storage, 1TB, but apparently my M.2 sockets are PCIE only. SPECTACULAR.

    I'm just going to return it and buy a cheaper Crucial 1TB SSD in the standard box form. Frustrating but it'll save me some dough and luckily I still have a spot for one conventional SSD even though I removed my HD bay last night.
    Reply to LanzoCommando
  26. getochkn said:
    LanzoCommando said:
    jameskennedy said:
    getochkn said:
    Should have bought a bigger drive. Windows and a few updates and you're 40-50GB gone already and that drive is full.


    What size would you recommend for Windows 10 only drive?


    125 or so. SSDs work better with headroom anyway and those size drives are not expensive. Buy it now or pay the price later...in frustration AND money.


    Ya, I have 120 and almost wish I went 250GB. Even with 120 you have to be careful that nothing gets downloaded to it, all your pic's and documents are switched over, etc.


    I've replaced my 60 GB SSD with a 120 GB Kingston Hyper X SSD. The performance issues are solved; much faster load times, snappier application load times etc. However should I still upgrade my RAM to a set of 16 GB. Also what signs will i see whenever I need to upgrade my CPU as my I5 3570k is quite old now.
    Reply to jameskennedy
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