3.7Ghz Overclocked i5-750 vs new i5 performance at base clocks? Bottleneck for RX 480?

I'm wondering if my old i5-750 performs well enough when overclocked to make an upgrade to the equivalent current generation i5 processor unneeded.

Are newer CPUs simply more efficient at many tasks that would make my old CPU struggle in newer games at the highest settings? Like, is there certain aspects to the demands of new games that the i5-750 was not designed for, that would cause it to struggle in ways that a new i5 would not?

I'm considering getting an RX 480 as an upgrade at some point, would my i5-750 at base clocks, or when overclocked to 3.7Ghz on all 4 cores be a bottleneck of any significance?

I've played Planetside 2 and noticed that the GPU (my R9 270x) seems to max out to 100% very easily, I'm not sure if it's more important to upgrade my CPU or GPU to get further performance.

I already have 16GB of RAM installed.
21 answers Last reply
More about 7ghz overclocked 750 performance base clocks bottleneck 480
  1. If your existing GPU hits 100% load "very easily" then getting a faster GPU should produce some obvious performance improvements.

    At 3.7GHz, most modern games should still run fine.
  2. It depends on the game. These are some comparisons I found though the old i5 wasn't overclocked. Given that newer i5's run a bit faster at stock and even faster if they too are overclocked, the i5 750 will likely still bottleneck some.

  3. Yeah I watched that video, my guess is when overclocked the i5-750 performs admirably compared to a more recent CPU in most games when paired with something like the RX 480. Perhaps the bottleneck is not significant enough to worry about, I just have to accept that stock clock speeds will be an issue (if I'm running it at stock [with all the mobo's power saving options that don't function when the CPU is overclocked] to conserve my PC's lifespan, which I've been doing when I'm not gaming a lot). I hope that guy releases another video with the i5-750 overclocked!
  4. For now it might be worth getting the rx 480 and trying it. See what your game performance is like and compare it to other benchmarks for the same gpu when paired with other cpu's (often times they use an i7 so gpu performance isn't hindered by the cpu). If your current gpu is often hitting 100% and your cpu isn't then it's fairly safe to say the gpu is the immediate bottleneck. If the cpu is hitting 100% with the gpu only reaching 80% or so then you'll know it's your cpu holding things back.

    I try to hang onto hardware as long as I can as well. My suggestion moving forward is if budget allows try and get a k series cpu when you upgrade. Or if you go with zen once it's available and performance and prices are known see how zen overclocks.

    That is if you think it will become a similar situation as you're in now, keeping hardware as long as possible. Overclocking rarely makes a huge difference at the time the cpu is released, while it's current gen. It's later on when the cpu is showing its age like your situation now, being able to use the cpu for another year or two thanks to being able to overclock it vs if you were stuck with the stock speeds.
  5. I don't place too much value on attempting to future-proof a PC longer than necessary: if I built a PC around the idea of overclocking it, the PC would cost me $150 extra up-front to build and another $100-150 extra in power over its lifespan to run, enough to afford a new CPU five years down the road.
  6. Thanks for the tip on the Zen CPUs, I've never gone with an AMD cpu before, we'll see how they compare when it comes time for that decision. Also thank you for recommending the "K" model CPUs, I didn't know about their further capacity for overclocking. I do remember reading back in the day that the i5-750 was a pretty beastly overclocker for the price, I don't think one was made for the first generation models but I wonder how a K version of the same CPU would compare when overclocked to the limit.

    I'm reluctant to pay for another motherboard any time soon to upgrade to a newer CPU, since the one I have was bought not too long ago (to replace a mobo that died), and I also bought 16GB of DDR3 RAM recently (upgraded from 4GB) which I'm not sure will work on newer motherboards. I don't have the money to buy a new CPU/mobo/cooler for CPU/RAM anyway, I'd rather try to get what I can out of what I have if possible, and feel the RX 480 would likely breathe a lot of new life into my PC. Upgrading to the Zen cpu or any other will be a ways off, but it's good to know it exists. :)
  7. The K/non-K thing started with the Sandy Bridge generation where Intel locked most CPU multipliers and getting a 'K-chip' was the only way to unlock them.
  8. Does that mean the i5-750 was already "unlocked"?

    Just something else random I found, and perhaps out of the scope of this topic, but there's a thing called Multi-GPU for DirectX 12... will this work for older cards like my HD 5870? I was thinking of selling it but I could possibly use it with my R9 270x, and then switch out the HD 5870, either give it to someone else or sell it, and then combine the 270x with the RX 480 later.

    I'd have to dual boot a copy of Windows 10 (which I do not own) with my Windows 7 installation (which I refused to give up the license for to have a copy of Windows 10), in order to run DX12, but it might be worth keeping the cards around for. All I'd need at the moment is to pay for a copy of Windows 10, assuming dual booting is as simple as creating a separate partition, and making sure I've enough space on my 2TB HDD.

    I'd probably be using Windows 7 for daily use, and older games that are better supported, and Windows 10 for all other games that run better on it.
  9. I would definitely prefer if they simply dropped DX12 and went with Vulkan so I didn't have to bother with Windows 10 at all though! :D
  10. AMD dropped driver support for anything older than the HD7000 series in their newer drivers, so you can probably forget about explicit multi-GPU support in DX12 with an HD5xxx series GPU.

    If explicit multi-GPU scales similarly to SLI and CrossFire, then attempting to combine two GPUs with drastically different performances is going to completely mess up performance and you will be much better off using only the stronger GPU on its own.
  11. I can't think of anything more to add at the moment, so thank you both for your help. :)
  12. Oh something just came to me, I've an HX650 PSU, would that be enough to drive the RX 480 with the i5-750 OC'd to 3.7GHz+? I'm guessing it should be fine. Is there any clear indication of when you've pushed your PSU beyond its limits?

    I was considering manually overclocking the CPU to see how high it can go, I've never tried it before but I'm sure there's plenty of old instructions out there for this CPU. If I can hit 4.2GHz or something that would be pretty sick. This heatsink & aftermarket thermal paste has always kept the chip nice and cool so I think I'm good on that end. Up to now I just use the highest performance method my mobo has for automatic overclocking, which gives me higher RAM speed and the 3.7GHz.

    When people want to downclock their computer assuming they're not going to do heavy gaming on it for a while, to let their components have less stress, should you save all your OC settings on a piece of paper or something? Voltages and such that you can just set again quickly without memorizing. I'm not sure if there's a way to save a profile in the bios.

    I think the model is P7P55D according to Open Hardware Monitor. Looks like I only have a secondary 4x PCI-E slot for a secondary card as well, as opposed to the 8 x 8 slots on the P7P55D Pro model it replaced.
  13. The HX650 will have no worries, its a workhorse of a psu. You'll know exactly if you hit its limits, it shuts down.

    Every bios I've run across recently has some sort of profiling. It's usually under the very last tab somewhere. You can save multiple different profiles for different OC settings. So you could save the 3.7, save the 4.2 and a default and switch between at leisure. Depending on if your bios has this option of course. Much faster and easier to just take some photos than writing down all those settings.

    x16/x4 is common on the low grade boards and my Asus has a kicker, if I use the top pcie x1 slot it shares bandwidth with the second pcie x16 so bios runs the slots as x16/x2. It'll only run the top x1 at that setting, otherwise it's disabled for x16/x4. Not a problem for most
  14. Sounds great. The person who recommended that PSU to me was a techie fellow I met in Planetside 2 actually, he seemed to be almost aroused when extolling the value of that PSU. lol

    That was after my previous PSU died on me, a relatively low quality one it seemed to me, comparing the two.

    Mobo's fine for one card at least with the 16x slot I suppose, I've heard that one RX 480 is perfect for basically anything you want to run at 1080p so, I'd probably be all set once I've got that. I've considered getting the 8GB version for the fact that it is possible I'd want to try running games with texture mods and such, and it might help extend the life of my PC for newer games that push that sort of limit. I've heard at least one game will take you close or just beyond 4GB VRAM by itself without mods, I've forgotten the name of the game, I read it earlier today. I'd probably pay the extra for the 8GB instead of the 4GB when I get that card just in case.

    The 16GB RAM upgrade (from 4GB) has definitely come in handy when I want to leave my browser open, and however many other programs. Start up Planetside 2 which can take you close to 7GB with nothing else running assuming a fresh boot with graphics at low settings, or have the computer on without rebooting for 2 weeks resulting in programs slowly consuming the RAM more and more, and being able to comfortably take 11+ GB of RAM usage no sweat, with no impact on the gaming experience that I've noticed (other than software bugs that eventually seem to occur that only seem to be resolved with a fresh OS boot, usually around 2 weeks that I've noticed).

    I've yet to go over 12GB of RAM I think (I might have artificially forced it by opening 100 tabs in Chrome one time), but I'm sure I could get there if I left enough programs running, and at least I'm all set for what demands might come from future games RAM-wise. I'm lucky I bought the Windows 7 Home Premium version and not something lower when I bought the OS, otherwise I'd be stuck with 8GB max. The Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate versions could take 192GB of RAM apparently. Only the 64-bit versions of the OS of course.

    I'm getting this monitor btw:

    AOC G2260VWQ6 - http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824160275
    I got it for 53% off for $150 vs $320 Canadian normally (I think I might have noticed another store with a cheaper base price though, like Amazon, but they don't take PayPal). I think this monitor was released around August of last year. Seems pretty sweet, and I'll have Freesync once I replace this GPU, R9 270x doesn't support Freesync. :(

    I made another topic about my issues with the previous monitor I bought (and am returning), AMVA+, at least on the cheap and, I'm not sure if the same issues aren't present on higher $ models, they simply aren't the panel for me. They've a lot of good qualities but dat response time, and those dark transitions, they too dang slow. I've never used an IPS but I didn't want to risk it having ghosting or blur, or response time that I could notice. I've always had sharp eyes, and never needed a prescription, so I didn't want to take the chance, plus I like having an edge when I'm competing, even if it is for fun. The 53% off a $320 gaming monitor was just too good to pass up. I'd love the increased image & color quality of an IPS (and the viewing angles), but to be honest I'm kinda hoping this monitor will tide me over until 144Hz OLED monitors become affordable (and don't have any burn-in issues), then I might upgrade the whole dang PC! :D :D

    Especially if it's a 4K monitor. ;)

    Monitor topic link: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/id-3143616/amva-panel-benq-gw2270-issue-dark-scenes-games-advice-replacement.html
  15. I also found a review for this monitor (AOC G2260VWQ6) the other day, comparing it with others:

    It has almost perfect 6500K color reproductions apparently (their graphic claimed 6513K, it's a TN panel), at least compared to the other monitors it seemed impressive, they show the data in an image on the "Test results color temperature and color fidelity" page. I've heard that newer TNs of higher quality can potentially have very good color, but not IPS good, compared side-by-side, after both have been fully and accurately calibrated.

    For your convenience if you wish to see that graph and a few others, the "Test results color temperature and color fidelity" page:
  16. Timekeepsonslippin said:
    I've yet to go over 12GB or RAM I think (I might have artificially forced it by opening 100 tabs in Chrome one time), but I'm sure I could get there if I left enough programs running, and at least I'm all set for what demands might come from future games RAM-wise.

    You don't want to reach 100% RAM utilization by software since that leaves no RAM for the file system cache. With the swapfile enabled, Windows will swap stuff out to make room for caching before that happens, which will cause unnecessary wear on the SSD/HDD. If you disable the swapfile and fill the RAM with software, application performance gets dragged down from having to reload frequently accessed files directly from storage instead of file system cache.

    How much spare RAM you need to keep all of your simultaneously opened software happy depends on how much frequently accessed data needs to be cached.
  17. Are you saying I should disable my swapfile to prolong my HDD lifespan or something? I don't currently have a SSD but would it help to do it with that if I'd my OS installed on it? Not sure how people normally have their HDD/SSD partitioned and configured since I've never done it. I've got a 2TB 7200RPM HDD I believe. The swapfile is set to automatically size itself afaik. I've tried multiplying by 1.5x (I think) and setting that to the min and max before too but I don't think that's how it is right now.

    It does sound like it's a good thing to have more than enough RAM though so that the swapfile is not engaged as much.
  18. No, you don't need to disable the swapfile. You just need to be aware that 100% RAM utilization is not something you will usually want to get to or stay at.

    I always set the swapfile on my PC to fixed size since I have noticed Windows continuously resizing the stupid file even when it isn't used much when left to size it on its own. I would have disabled it (I have 32GB RAM) but some of my software attempts to reserve memory directly against the swapfile and runs into severe performance issues when there is no swapfile for them to do so.

    Before I got my current PC, I had 8GB of RAM in my Core2. The various software I was running all the time at the time consumed most of that 8GB leaving nothing for caching, so I had to split my software and swapfile across three HDDs to keep performance barely bearable. When I upgraded to my i5 with 16GB RAM, my software immediately consumed about 3GB extra RAM and the rest by the file system cache. This was still not enough to keep all of my software's frequently accessed data in cache, so I went to 32GB to practically eliminate disk reads after stuff has been loaded for the first time.
  19. Thank you, I changed my Pagefile to 1.5 x 16GB. That gives you 24GB, multiplied by 1024 = 24576MB Min/Max Pagefile, 3MB above the recommended.

    I remembered some tip I read years ago about deleting the Pagefile so that you can make it again fresh, I'm not sure if that helps at all but this was my method.

    A website advised I defragment my HDD before I remake the Pagefile so that it would be a single contiguous file upon creation. I went overboard and used the Quick Defrag to make sure there was no fragmented files during all the steps I could think of.

    I used O&O Defrag 17 to do a Quick Defrag (it's fast), then turned off the Pagefile and rebooted.

    I then did another Quick Defrag, and set the Pagefile Min/Max to 24576MB.

    I rebooted, logged into my account, made sure everything was loaded by opening a program and running it (I also did this after the previous reboot), closed that, and did another Quick Defrag.

    I set the computer to run a Boot Time Defragmentation (usually doesn't last long if you've already run a Quick Defrag) to get the files that can only be accessed during boot defragmented.

    Then I stopped the madness.

    I have no idea if I would have been just as well off simply doing a Quick Defrag once, setting my Min/Max Pagefile size to 24576MB, rebooting, logging in and setting the Boot Time Defragmentation, followed by another boot, but it's done now, and it didn't take that long. I'm a bit concerned about the Boot Defrag interfering with the Pagefile resize, that's why I would choose to separate the two between boots. I don't know how these things actually interact so I'd play it safe.

    One last thing for now, I was reading a bunch of opinions yesterday about whether keeping the computer on all the time or turning it off at night was more beneficial to the life of components. Many people tried to cite the way the platters on the HDD can be damaged through cold boots, but others said most problems have been resolved with more recent tech, including issues with the extremely short initial surge your computer receives the instant you press the power button (I have a good surge protector I believe, if that makes any difference). Some people seemed to believe rebooting was also bad for the PSU, I'm assuming this is cold boots and not Restarts.

    Some argued that the expanding and contracting of all chip components and especially mechanical parts is damaging, and that variation in temperature and operating speed were more damaging than a continuous usage state. Others suggested that it was more damaging and reduced the lifespan more to continuously keep the PC turned on, especially fans (I have had to oil the bearings on more than one occasion due to noise).

    I've been leaving mine on most of the time lately but I'm not totally certain if I should at least set my computer to enter sleep mode 45 minutes after I've been inactive in case I fall asleep. As I understand in sleep mode the only thing active is your RAM drawing a small amount of power to keep the computer in a ready state to continue, which technically means your RAM will be degrading at least a little bit through use I think. I'm also not entirely certain during how much time away I'd be best off turning it off completely, and I don't know if I might be away for an hour if I should set the computer to Sleep mode (assuming there are things on the browser that I don't want to close for example) before I leave, as far as conserving the lifespan of the PC components most effectively.
  20. A 24GB permanent swapfile is a little overkill, your system will long have become unusable if you ever needed that much swap space and you would be much better off upgrading to 32GB RAM if that ever happened. You should be easily able to safely reduce that to 12GB or even 8GB. On my PC, I set the swapfile to 4GB, just enough to keep my software that insists on using the swapfile even when I have 20GB of free RAM available happy.

    As for leaving the computer on 24/7, I do it mainly for convenience and because I often run torrents and software updates overnight. I wouldn't worry about the "surges" from turning on the PC since the PSU is always on 24/7 unless you use the hard switch at the back or some other means of physically disconnecting the PSU from AC power. Modern HDDs have inherited most of the start-stop enhancements from laptops, I wouldn't consider them particularly susceptible to start-stop issues. That said, they aren't designed to get cycled on/off every few minutes either.

    I wouldn't worry about thermal cycling either: even if you don't turn off your PC, the CPU still cycles between ambient temperature to 50-70C while under load due to thermal resistance between the die and heatsink anyway and this cycling can happen several times per minute already. I wouldn't recommend putting the PC to sleep every time you walk away from the keyboard but two or three times a day shouldn't hurt any worse.
  21. You've been very gracious, thank you for the help. :)
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