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Looking For Upgrade Help: RAM, Processor

Post Date: 2014-12-17

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Germaximus View Drop Down
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  Quote Germaximus Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Topic: Looking For Upgrade Help: RAM, Processor
    Posted: 17 Dec 2014 at 3:09pm
Hello everybody,

I bought a PC a little over a year ago from Digital Storm. I have loved it and have recommended all of my friends and Twitch viewers to check DS out whenever questions about my PC or general PC talk comes up.

It seems it may be time to upgrade, though. And I don't have a tiny clue exactly how to do it. I'm not sure what will be compatible with my components and I can't afford to mess around buying parts that will not work with my setup. (I buy pre-built because I know nothing about computers.)

My motherboard is ASUS Z87-C (Intel Z87 chipset). I'm looking to upgrade my processor. One of the fine folks at DS recommended I look into i7 4770K, i7 4670K. Not the new ones such as 4790K or 4690K.

I'm also wondering if there is a specific block of RAM that I need to look for that will be compatible with my motherboard and such? Or will any RAM piece do?

Also, is it possible to upgrade my motherboard? If so, what should I look for? I'm a gamer and want to run every game at the highest possible settings. (If I need to upgrade motherboard to run a better video card/processor. I have no idea.) My video card is currently a GTX 770 with 4gb VRAM.

Thank you very much for your time.

Edited by Germaximus - 17 Dec 2014 at 3:12pm
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  Quote bprat22 Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 18 Dec 2014 at 4:13am
Hi Germaximus.... You didn't mention your cpu, but unless you're looking to get into Sata Express or M.2 storage cards, there is no benefit upgrading from Z87 to Z97 chipset for a gaming rig. If you want hyperthreading for other than gaming, and you have a i5 cpu, then a i7 upgrade would help.   The new Z97 does allow for the future Broadwell cpu, but that would be the time to upgrade if needed.

For ram, 8gb is still fine for most gaming. If you want to add ram, best bet is to go to a site like Crucial.com for an example and use there memory compatibility tool to check your system.   Or just get ram with the same specs, like 1.5 volts at 9-9-9-24 as an.example. CPU-Z can be used to see your specs.

The gtx 770 is an excellent card. Don't know your monitor resolution but if you need more, the latest gtx 970/980 will give you a 20-30% better frames.

For most, what you have should game great for the near future, assuming a single 1920x1080 monitor.   You can certainly upgrade the mobo but no real benefit unless there's something specific you need.

Hope this helps.

Edited by bprat22 - 18 Dec 2014 at 4:17am
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Germaximus View Drop Down
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  Quote Germaximus Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 18 Dec 2014 at 8:16am
Oh hm thanks! I totally forgot to mention my CPU. It is i5-4570.

One of the main reasons I'm looking to upgrade is because I live stream and it puts more pressure on my CPU apparently.

Should I upgrade the RAM or CPU or both? My RAM is currently 8GB but newer games like Assassin's Creed Unity (I hate Ubisoft now for their poor optimization) still have issues while live streaming.

Edited by Germaximus - 18 Dec 2014 at 8:18am
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  Quote  Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 18 Dec 2014 at 8:36am
Take a look at AverMedia's Live Gamer HD or Game Broadcaster HD to off-load processing of the live stream from your processor. These Avermedia cards do take a bit of power, so hopefully your power supply was a bit overspec'd for your current components. Disclaimer: I have not used these cards so I can't speak to how well they work, but I have used one of their TV tuner cards and it worked well (but I did have a PSU issue with it).

These are PCI-e cards that will fit into the expansion slots on your motherboard. When you get a card, turn your computer and power supply of (there is a switch on the power supply by the power cord). Make sure you're free of static electricity (don't work on a carpet and touch a large conductive grounded object). Then take the side panel off so you're looking at your motherboard. Find a free PCI-e slot you can fit your card in. Take a screw driver and remove the blank slot cover. Insert the card and screw down. Replace side panel and turn computer on. After you've booted into you O/S, insert the driver CD and install the necessary drivers for the card. It might need to restart, but otherwise good to go. There may be one or two other steps to follow with HDMI cables, but they should be laid out in setup instructions.
"In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is." - Yogi Berra

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  Quote Germaximus Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 18 Dec 2014 at 8:54am
I actually recently got the Live Gamer Portable. One thing I've noticed right away is how it automatically switches my TV from being my main monitor and I have to mess with that which is annoying. And getting the LGP recognized on OBS is another issue sometimes.

Would upgrading the CPU or RAM not really help stream straight from the CPU?
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  Quote  Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 18 Dec 2014 at 8:57am
If a dedicated streaming device won't work, I'd look into using NVIDIAs streaming capabilities in the GeForce Experience program.
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  Quote bprat22 Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 18 Dec 2014 at 9:00am
I don't stream, but my understanding is to get the best cpu you can. The advantage of a i5-4670k over your 4570 is that the K chip can be overclocked with the right after market cooler.   Faster clock speed equals faster work getting done.    The i7-4770k is better still, being hyper-threading and able to do the multi tasks smoother.

Not sure of ram usage. 

Others that stream might be able to give you actual results. 

Changing your cpu can be expensive and some degree of work if your not pc savy. 




Edited by bprat22 - 18 Dec 2014 at 9:02am
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Germaximus View Drop Down
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  Quote Germaximus Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 18 Dec 2014 at 9:34am
I had used Nvidias live streaming platform for a bit before moving on to OBS. The thing about Shadowplay is that you cannot really customize the overlay so it's kinda lame.

Thanks very much for your answers, guys! I'll probably end up upgrading both my CPU and RAM. The minimum requirements for the Highest Recommended settings of RAM just keep going up.

I can't even run Shadow of Mordor with Ultra Textures without stuttering while not live streaming. /sigh

Edited by Germaximus - 18 Dec 2014 at 10:25am
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