Originally Posted by renethx /forum/post/12830917
There is no way to compare Dell with the upgrade plan I suggested. The price of a refurbished system depends on what components are used. That of Pentium DC 2.2GHz (which I consider minimum for future PC as there are lots of HD contents that requires CPU decoding power) and 2GB RAM is around $400. 250W PSU is crappy (proprietary connector, no way to reuse it) and no video card is included (add another $100).
I think there's a way to compare it
While you're likely absolutely right about the Dell PSU (I actually didn't know they were doing prop. connectors now, as in the past all their boards were Intel reference boards I thought) so it probably can't be reused, I think the LGA775 with C2D support is still a better idea. I mean for $44 more, even not being very upgradable, the CPU still has more potential. I'm not really sure if a Pentium E at 1.8 will outrun a dual-core Opty at 2.6, I would think it would be close. Plus with LGA775 you have a huge upgrade path on the CPU, with the Opteron you're at a dead end. You could sell the E2160 for $50 or so (maybe even more) and throw in any of the C2Ds out there at the moment. The current system/componets, even after adding those $$$ to upgrade it you're still at an eventual dead end that comes sooner than the Dell system in some respects.
But then I guess the Dell stock board is a waste anyway because there's really no need to get rid of the E2160 where on any other board you'd get at least near to 3GHz out of it overclocking...
You could reuse the upgraded PSU you suggested, no doubt, with any other board later on. I'm not really recommending one way or the other here I guess, just saying the Dell system is still an option in some respects.
I think there's still two ways of looking at it anyway.
Originally Posted by ZenerDiode /forum/post/12831008
why is 2.2ghz the min for future use? The heavy decoding is offloaded to the GPU anyways. My dc 3800+ has been able to handle everything thrown at it with the help of a $30 8400GS video card.
I would actually recommend a C2D greater than 2.2Ghz though, myself! I would say you need a C2D OC'd to at least 3.0 GHz, or a C2Q/quad core CPU instead. The Opty at 2.6, that isn't going to cut it I don't think. If you run into HD problems (if you care about HD) you're gonna have to either OC that Opteron (if it isn't already) or go towards an Intel platform, if necessary.
Just as an "HD hitch" example (rather lengthy but just so you get the idea)...
At stock clock on an E6660 I can't play RE3 BD back without stuttering issues. Now PDVD indicates DXVA in use and it's a AVC/h.264 movie and I have an X1950pro that allegedly accelerates AVC.
The X1950 can't accelerate as well as the Nvdia 8400/8500/8600 or the ATi cards with UVD I guess, but it's still supposed to accelerate it (whether it actually does in my case I'm not sure) However I get ~50% on both cores on most AVC encoded Blu-ray discs, but
RE3 is profile 1.1 which PDVD does not support yet. Despite the bitrate being similar to other AVC movies, at 2.4Ghz my C2D hasn't got a chance in hell on that movie! Either DXVA is not working and/or something with [the lack of] profile 1.1 is seriously messed up. I'm just saying that it won't work because I tried it at 2.4 as someone was experiencing problems on an older Pentium D so I wanted to see what was going on...
I'm actually lightly OC'd on the E6600 to about 3.2GHz so the cores handle it... But just barely, at 80-100% most of the time. If you were trying to play this movie with your Opteron or A64 x2 it would be either a very frustrating or very funny experience (depending on your sense of humour).
Right now, using PDVD (one of the only programs for BD at the moment) movies like RE3 require relatively high CPU performance. Now we know the problem is PDVD--when the lazy Cyberlink clowns get around to updating it, it'll probably be fixed; but when will they fix it? At least I can watch the movie now whereas some others can't. Even once they update it, what happens with Profile 2.0 movies start appearing? The same thing? Another wait for months before Cyberlink (or whatever company) updates while things like HA don't work at all? Then you're stuck.
As long as you stay out of the 1080p/BD/HD-DVD area though, you'll never have a problem, that's for sure. But there is something to be said for more processing power--it's always handy to have because you never know when you'll need it