PC Upgrade - Looking for advice


Ah, I totally missed that. Thanks!


Sounds like the K series of gaming CPU’s will have these fixes at the hardware level from manufacturing.

In particular, it’s the new K-series of gaming CPUs that are receiving the fix. Those chips come with changes at the hardware level and should be far more secure against the kind of attacks that Spectre and its ilk have brought to light in recent years. Although they are still based on the same 14nm node that has dominated Intel’s chip designs since 2014, these would be the first ones to come with a fix for these sorts of bugs at the hardware level.


I’m super grateful for the sage and timely advice, Scott. I hadn’t realized the K-series would be shipping this soon. Oh, and a co-worker also says thanks.

My new case and motherboard arrived today. Apparently motherboards these days do not ship with screws included. Well, just the standoff screws, anyway. It’s been so long since I’ve monkeyed around with a motherboard (everything but for the past 8 years), all my screws are in storage somewhere, so I had to buy a set of them. Sheesh.


The screws always comes with the cases. You’d be lucky if you get more than 2 SATA cables in a motherboard box.

I’ll be getting the 9700k as soon as it’s available here. Maybe even the 9900k, depending on the price. Not that I’m the one who’s paying, but I feel guilty whenever the hardware I’m getting is too expensive.


No mb screws included with the case, either, minus the standoffs. Searched the box twice. Obsidian 500D.

Edit: Turns out Amazon forgot to throw the accessories kit (which includes the mb screws) into the box. They’re shipping me another case, this time with the accessories kit, with a free return shipping label. I’ll just leave the replacement case in the box and ship that back.

Edit 2: Bah, found the little kit tucked into one of the niches on the back side. Not that anyone cares. Very sneaky, Corsair.


The 9th gen (aka skylake refresh refresh refresh refresh with more cores) intel chips supposedly do have hardware mitigations against one class of meltdown and one of spectre, but it’s still unknown just how much that improves performance. I wouldn’t buy one until the actual reviews come out. I have hopes that Anandtech will specifically test that.

For gaming purposes the i5 9600K will probably make more sense, but that isn’t guaranteed as Intel also messed with the L3 cache and it’s shared across all cores.


What do you mean by “improves performance”? You mean the mitigations could potentially limit performance?


Yeah, existing CPU’s that have been fixed are slower because (as I understand it) the original cause of the security weakness was one of the ways the CPU’s were very fast. Now that it’s patched, that avenue of performance is closed off to the CPU’s. Since the new i-9000K series have addressed the issue through hardware, they are regaining some of that lost speed (plus being just generally faster). That’s my read on the situation, I’m not an expert.


Anyone who’s thinking of upgrading and doesn’t want to be like me and buy the expensive new stuff, I’m gonna have a “why are you even upgrading this?**” quad-core/8-thread Core i7-7770K + Asus Strix Z270 combo available at used prices once my i9-9900K arrives.

Plan to post it in the used hardware topic once I get my new CPU installed, but if you’re interested, DM me.

** Why? 16 cores+video editing! And buying myself divorce presents!


You don’t even need to ask rhetorically - everyone in this thread gets it. :)


Cool idea.
There should be registries for that, just like weddings.
After all, divorces tend to be much more expensive than weddings.


Scott, are you still going with the ASRock H370M Pro 4 motherboard? I think it only supports 8th gen Intel processors (you were getting a 9th gen). Even if it can be flashed to be made 9th gen compatible, you’d need a CPU to flash it (I think).

I made this mistake, when on impulse I decided to upgrade my CPU to the 9700k instead of an older (but still newer to me) 8th gen, after having already purchased a Gigabyte Z370M:

Currently back to the drawing board on selecting a new mb.


I was honestly wondering about this. I was going to contact the manufacture and ask, sometimes you can flash a new BIOS directly on the motherboard with a USB stick, but it’s a step I’d rather not have to worry about. If a 9th gen mb is available I’ll grab that, but honestly looking around (a few weeks ago) like I was, I ONLY could find 8th gen’s that were compatible, nothing out of the box it seemed like?

EDIT - It looks like the board I had ear-marked can be flashed via the BIOS.


Ah, maybe it uses UFEI? My Gigabyte lacks that, I believe, so I’ll probably be sending it back and replacing it with an ASRock Z390 Extreme4.


Let me know how that works for you - I’m not married to the 370 or anything, and for $100 more it would be nice to have a more feature rich board.


Z390 ordered! Should arrive early next week, probably still well ahead of the 9700K which seems to be stuck in Amazon limbo.


Which flavor of Z390 did you end up ordering? There are several, and I’m having a hard time picking one. The big two are very expensive, but have features I’ll never use like dual-gigabit ethernet ports or the ability to really regulate voltage for high end over clocking. I was looking at this one, as it seems to do everything I need but it lacks a wi-fi or bluetooth:

But it DOES have a second M.2 slot so I thought I might grab this M.2 wifi/bluetooth adapter. Sometimes I like the option of connecting my iPhone bluetooth headphones to my PC, and for $15 I think this gets the job done.


They sure have a lot of flavors! I was a little baffled myself at first and decided to go with the Z390 EXTREME4 ($195.07):

The wifi adapter you linked only offers up to 867 Mbps. The 9260 can do a gigabit:


Oh, I really only want it for the blue-tooth, but that’s a good note. I may as well get the one with faster wi-fi in case I find myself needing/wanting it for some reason (like if I want to hook my PC up to my TV, for example).

I wishlisted the Extreme 4 board you picked up, it was only $30 more than the one I had been looking at, let me know your thoughts on it when you get the build done, I won’t be putting my order in until early December or so, I think.

Also, I had read that going with faster RAM is a good idea with these CPU’s as they can actually take advantage of higher (up to 4Ghz, for example) speeds, so I dropped the 3200 I had wishlisted and upgraded to 4000 for a little extra.


Damn it! :) 3200s shipped back, 4000s ordered. (2x8GB)

I’ll let you know when it’s all built out. I’ll have everything but the CPU installed by Wednesday. God knows when the CPU will ship.