Advice for a new desktop.


BUMP, just to ask, what is considered a good, useful, mostly future proof CPU by you guys.

I’m looking to source the components and start building this as a Christmas present to myself, especially as I won;t have any actual holiday at Christmas, and understand that the CPU is arguably the most important thing and, important to note, quite hard to upgrade iirc, at least compared to adding in or changing a stick of memory.

What’s the realistic/relevant difference (see below) between an i5 and an i7?

For reference/reminder:

Budget starting at £1000 (but am living in the Canary island so factor in extra for transportation) but upto £1500.

Needs to last about 5 years, and play games such as Total War, D:OS2 etc. Doesn’t need to play anything more graphically demanding.


For gaming in the next 3 years, I think a Core i5 is good enough.
But since you are taking future proof, I’d think maybe 8 years or more, i7 is a better bet, of course.

Honestly though, if budget is tight, I’d go with i5 and get a better GFX in order to stretch it to 5 years…


The i3 is just as fast at games, and often faster, than an i7.

This tends to fall on deaf ears however, and most people here like having i7’s because they’re more expensive (and there’s nothing wrong with that).

Also consider AMD.


I set a budget for the PC, pick parts that fit the budget, and then purchase. If the price is fixed then the math gets a lot easier on which part to purchase. Which processor? The best one that is $175 +/- $25. Makes life easy if you spec everything first.


Aren’t there certain games that run better with more cores, though? What about Planet Coaster?


Sure, examples can be found, and more cores will be much better at multi-core CPU benchmarks, too (tongue in cheek).

But other games, maybe even most games, run better with faster cores instead of more cores. Out of the five games that Anandtech tested, the i3 did just as well if not better on all five. To me this means that at the same price, in i3 is fine. At half the cost, it’s somewhat of a no-brainer. Remember its still dual core / four thread.

Edit: actually the new i3 is quad-core too, not 2/4 as I thought.


I’m gaming with an i7 from 2012. While I upgraded to a SSD and the GPU twice in those years, I see no reason moving to a later generation CPU until my motherboard dies and I have no choice.

Waiting for the 8th Gen CPUs to come next month, I believe, and getting a six core i5 or i7 with hyperthreading, sounds like the smart choice for future proofing.


Six cores, and future proofing? Like I said, spend your money on your hobby, nothing wrong with it. But recognize that Intel is litterally inventing a new word to try and convince PC gamers to buy these things: mega-tasking.

The primary scenario envisioned by Intel is of a gamer playing at 4K resolution while also encoding a (4K) recording of his or her match and streaming on Twitch at the same time.

I’m in the same boat, actually. I have the urge to upgrade my i3 from 2011, but all the games I play run great. I’ve also upgraded the GPU twice in those years. I might go for an upgrade anyway out of boredom.


Any thoughts on the new coffee lake processors? Or too early to ask?

My laptop has an i7 so I think I’d probably want another i7 at the least.

In my ignorance I’m not entirely sure it’d matter as I’d be going from laptop to desktop so would have a better computer anyway?

EDIT. RPS has some thoughts.


Hmm, I read the RPS link, thanks. Basically this is an architecture change and next year is a process shrink. One way to interpret it is that this is a better year for desktops (for the performance bump) and next year is a better year for laptops (due to the efficiency bump). So Coffee Lake desktop could be a good idea.

I love the look of the i3, personally, at 4Ghz vs 2.8 I think it’s probably faster at gaming (and almost everything else) than the more expensive i5, per my posts above. The 3 also has a doubling of cache while i5 is a 50% improvement - not an expert on how it works, but the cache is important too.


I wouldn’t buy a dual core CPU. The new coffee lake i3 has four cores now-- that’s the gaming CPU to beat.


The motherboard on my PC is getting increasingly flakey, and I need to start spec’ing a new machine tout suite. Budget this time. Per TechReport’s current guides:

AMD Ryzen 5 1600 + cooler
Gigabyte GA-AB350 motherboard
2x4GB DDR4-2400 (maybe more)
GeForce GTX 1060

Since I’ll be keeping my existing case, power supply, storage, and various cards, I’m looking at ~$700, plus build cost.

So, just how impossible will it be to migrate the Windows 7 install along with the SSD from my existing rig?


Is it actually available?


It was just announced last week. Release date is Q4 2017 which have zero doubt they will miss as it’s essentially yet another Skylake refresh just with more cores.


Okay, so I’m leaning towards this.

At a glance:

Athlon 64 processor, 6 core, 3.3. ghz
gtx 1060 3 gb graphics card (not the best but a step up from the current 780m model I have)
32 gb ram ddr3 (I can upgrade or add more in a year’s time)
2 tb hardrive. (I don’t need this much space but there isn’t an option to put in an ssd, unless I configure it from scratch at the vendor’s own website, which ends up costing quite a bit more)


BBB, that’s similar to one I just got, but everyone I talked to before buying mine said to get the 6Gig 1060, and the most ram you need is 16Gig.

Oh, and a SSD drive to hold the OS is just brilliant. From like a minute or two to boot up before, to 3 seconds.

At first glance I thought this one was a better deal, but then I realized yours has a monitor and stuff as well and is still a little cheaper.


This is me. On an I3 and on 3rd video card since buying, can play what I like (Total Warhammer, xcom, etc) at 1440p with no issues. I cannot justify the upgrade at this time, though the techno lust does get difficult at times.


Hey, I went shopping around Amazon a bit more and ended up going slightly overbudget (I had an upper limit of 2000 euros, which is 1700 pounds by rough reckoning, and with the monitor and keyboard - already have mouse- the total was about that), because I realised I had -considerably- overpaid on my credit card. I ended buying this.

because it had more RAM and an SSD.

I had to refund TW:Warhammer2 today because it took about 3 minutes to load a battle. Loading times slower than they were for TWW1. That’s what’s pushed me to an SSD.


Nice, BBB. I think you’ll find the SSD to be a huge difference maker. Grats!


What’s the term for when you’ve just bought something and you don’t quite regret it but you find yourself wondering if you have indeed gotten a decent deal or if you’ve overpaid.

There are just so many…options…out there! :(

1st world problems…