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Looking to make some upgrades

Hello all,

Let me start off with my current specs 

CPU: Overclocked Intel Core i5 4690K Quad-Core (4.0GHz-4.7GHz)

Power Supply: 850 Watt Corsair RM850

Motherboard: ASUS Maximus VII Ranger

Graphic Cards: Dual 4GB NVIDIA GTX 970

Memory: 16GB Corsair Dominator Platinum 1866Mhz (2x8GB)

 

This build has hit its 4 year mark, and its black friday/cyber monday, so I think now is the time to upgrade and capitalize on some of the upcoming deals. 

My PC has been being used for gaming & streaming. My biggest hold backs as of recently have been poor gaming performance while streaming, and even whilst not streaming. Im guessing my biggest bottleneck is my CPU.

But to upgrade my CPU, in my understanding I'll have to get a new motherboard and RAM along with it? Since the new MB/CPU's require DDR4 RAM?

Anyways, I've been looking at the i7 8700k. From the research I've conducted, its a good CPU for gaming and streaming. 

My biggest question, which is why I am making this post, is which motherboard should I get? 

Yes i know, I can compare motherboards on my own, but when im looking at the features and specs, I dont know exactly what I'm looking at. I suppose for reference, I want something close to the features my current motherboard is offering. Idk if I'll be overclocking, but a motherboard that has good OC features is something i know nothing about. 

 

These are the MB I am currently looking at: https://pcpartpicker.com/products/compare/3MJkcf,9PtWGX,DXCrxr,tqKhP6/

Asus - Prime Z370-A 

Asus - ROG Strix Z370-H Gaming

MSI - Z370 GAMING PRO CARBON 

Asus - ROG MAXIMUS X HERO (WI-FI AC)

 

Im wondering if im making a good choice with these upgrades and ignoring the GPU upgrade for now because of budget reasons. If doing these upgrades, will my GPU's be a huge bottle neck?

I should also note i game at 1080p

 

Anyways, thanks for taking your time. Hope you guys can give me some good feedback and not troll on this post. Lol. :)

 

 

My list of upgrades here:

 

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@dennisw95

 

When it comes to the streaming aspect, that's mostly on the CPU side of things, though what quality settings are you streaming at? And what games are you having FPS issues in?

 

Most of the Z-series boards in that price class should be fine, but do check on VRM quality. That's really the big key with the Z370 boards.

 

As for the totality of the upgrade, you're kind of in the bad spot as far as upgrades go. If you're trying to stream demanding, modern titles, the 8700k actually still has issues. At least if you want to stream at 1080p from the Gaming system. (Most dedicated streamers use 2 PCs, as the encoding/broadcast process eats up a lot of system bandwidth while playing a game.)

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6 minutes ago, Taf the Ghost said:

@dennisw95

 

When it comes to the streaming aspect, that's mostly on the CPU side of things, though what quality settings are you streaming at? And what games are you having FPS issues in?

 

Most of the Z-series boards in that price class should be fine, but do check on VRM quality. That's really the big key with the Z370 boards.

 

As for the totality of the upgrade, you're kind of in the bad spot as far as upgrades go. If you're trying to stream demanding, modern titles, the 8700k actually still has issues. At least if you want to stream at 1080p from the Gaming system. (Most dedicated streamers use 2 PCs, as the encoding/broadcast process eats up a lot of system bandwidth while playing a game.)

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That is my OBS settings as of right now.

& My main games im having fps issues whilst gaming and also while streaming it is Destiny 2, CS GO, Overwatch, and GTA V. I Can stream WoW fine, but i'd like to be able to enjoy streaming other games. 

 

&& What is the significance of VRM quality?

 

Also, what CPU or upgrades would you recommend given my usages and problems. 

 

Thank you for taking the time :)

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@dennisw95

 

Have you tried disabling the SLI and trying it all with a single card? You should be able to NVENC 720p without much issue with that setup. It strikes me that there's something else wrong firstly, especially if you're having issues with CS:GO. There could be any number of issues in the chain, possibly including an SSD or HDD having trouble.

 

Probably need to figure out a benchmark you can test against to see what's going on. 

 

VRMs are the power control systems on the Boards. It's a big "thing" right now because Intel has gone from 4 cores to 8 cores on their top-end Desktop CPUs, but the boards haven't quite stayed up with the necessary power draw support. 

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1 hour ago, Taf the Ghost said:

@dennisw95

 

Have you tried disabling the SLI and trying it all with a single card? You should be able to NVENC 720p without much issue with that setup. It strikes me that there's something else wrong firstly, especially if you're having issues with CS:GO. There could be any number of issues in the chain, possibly including an SSD or HDD having trouble.

 

Probably need to figure out a benchmark you can test against to see what's going on. 

 

VRMs are the power control systems on the Boards. It's a big "thing" right now because Intel has gone from 4 cores to 8 cores on their top-end Desktop CPUs, but the boards haven't quite stayed up with the necessary power draw support. 

I suppose what I mean is that I want the game to run smoothly while streaming. "Smoothly" meaning getting 120+ frames without having to set ingame settings at low. When I'm playing these games whilst streaming, my CPU is running at almost 100% at all times. 

& What do you mean by benchmark I can test "against"?

 

&& Oh gotcha, where can i find a good standard for VRMs that support certain CPUs?

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5 minutes ago, dennisw95 said:

I suppose what I mean is that I want the game to run smoothly while streaming. "Smoothly" meaning getting 120+ frames without having to set ingame settings at low. When I'm playing these games whilst streaming, my CPU is running at almost 100% at all times. 

& What do you mean by benchmark I can test "against"?

 

&& Oh gotcha, where can i find a good standard for VRMs that support certain CPUs?

VRM issues tend to be "requires checking reviews", though most manufacturers tend to have 2 VRM setups. You want the better one, which normally is the more expensive one.

 

On the benchmarking, it could be something as simple as an In-Game Benchmark. Just something that can stress the GPU & CPU enough to see if you can tease out where the trouble is showing up. Testing with 1 GPU. Maybe save the local file to your SSD. Trying to get an accurate understanding of where things really are bottlenecking and/or issues are arising. 

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16 minutes ago, Taf the Ghost said:

VRM issues tend to be "requires checking reviews", though most manufacturers tend to have 2 VRM setups. You want the better one, which normally is the more expensive one.

 

On the benchmarking, it could be something as simple as an In-Game Benchmark. Just something that can stress the GPU & CPU enough to see if you can tease out where the trouble is showing up. Testing with 1 GPU. Maybe save the local file to your SSD. Trying to get an accurate understanding of where things really are bottlenecking and/or issues are arising. 

Okay, I'll try to take a look into that.

 

But in your opinion, what CPU would be the best right now for streaming and getting good 120+fps in game?

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12 minutes ago, dennisw95 said:

Okay, I'll try to take a look into that.

 

But in your opinion, what CPU would be the best right now for streaming and getting good 120+fps in game?

i9-9900k, when they come back in stock in December or i9-7900X/9900X through 7940X. But that's "single seat". 

 

The actual best way is some basic 4-core system with a basic GPU and a pass-through Capture Card. Encoding eats up I/O resources, which is normally the actual bottleneck. CPU might be pegged at 100% but a huge portion of that is Wait Cycles as the CPU has to wait for tasks to process.

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27 minutes ago, Taf the Ghost said:

i9-9900k, when they come back in stock in December or i9-7900X/9900X through 7940X. But that's "single seat". 

 

The actual best way is some basic 4-core system with a basic GPU and a pass-through Capture Card. Encoding eats up I/O resources, which is normally the actual bottleneck. CPU might be pegged at 100% but a huge portion of that is Wait Cycles as the CPU has to wait for tasks to process.

Hmm, im thinking... What if i got the 8700k, then used my old i5 and build a small pc to encode my stream? Would I need a GPU on the encoding PC or?

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2 minutes ago, dennisw95 said:

Hmm, im thinking... What if i got the 8700k, then used my old i5 and build a small pc to encode my stream? Would I need a GPU on the encoding PC or?

Considering the hit on frame rates, it might be worth splitting out the two 970s for 1 in each, but I think you can run streaming systems on the iGPU. Having not spent any time actually fiddling with capture cards this decade, I'm not much of a resource on that one.

 

But, yes, splitting the build in two would make a lot of sense. Get a decent 450w/550w PSU (some real good ones on deep sale right now). Some in some basic storage (SSDs are on deep sale this Christmas season) and build the better CPU into your primary system.

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23 hours ago, Taf the Ghost said:

Considering the hit on frame rates, it might be worth splitting out the two 970s for 1 in each, but I think you can run streaming systems on the iGPU. Having not spent any time actually fiddling with capture cards this decade, I'm not much of a resource on that one.

 

But, yes, splitting the build in two would make a lot of sense. Get a decent 450w/550w PSU (some real good ones on deep sale right now). Some in some basic storage (SSDs are on deep sale this Christmas season) and build the better CPU into your primary system.

This is a real curveball because I've been doing some thinking... Im a college student, and I know a lot of my fellow peers use laptops... 

Say I got a decent laptop, would that be a viable option to use as a streaming PC? My idea is that instead of spending money upgrading my PC components, I could put that money towards a good laptop that I could use for college but also a streaming PC. Is there any precautions i should take with this idea?

Thanks a lot for taking your time with me and all of your insights. 

 

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2 minutes ago, dennisw95 said:

This is a real curveball because I've been doing some thinking... Im a college student, and I know a lot of my fellow peers use laptops... 

Say I got a decent laptop, would that be a viable option to use as a streaming PC? My idea is that instead of spending money upgrading my PC components, I could put that money towards a good laptop that I could use for college but also a streaming PC. Is there any precautions i should take with this idea?

Thanks a lot for taking your time with me and all of your insights. 

 

In theory, yes. In practice? You could burn out your laptop running it that hard. You'd need one with good cooling capacity.

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7 minutes ago, dennisw95 said:

This is a real curveball because I've been doing some thinking... Im a college student, and I know a lot of my fellow peers use laptops... 

Say I got a decent laptop, would that be a viable option to use as a streaming PC? My idea is that instead of spending money upgrading my PC components, I could put that money towards a good laptop that I could use for college but also a streaming PC. Is there any precautions i should take with this idea?

Thanks a lot for taking your time with me and all of your insights. 

 

Streaming isn't my thing, but I think there's a way to broadcast it over a local network. That could run the encode & upload to Twitch, in theory. Thin & Light would be out, in that setup. There are external capture cards, but those are a really expensive solution.

 

The other option is to use the Laptop as the gaming device. Use an external Monitor & keyboard/mouse, then have a capture card in the i7 system to handle the streaming. 

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