A few months ago I bought a new GPU (1060 GB) and my performance got higher from that. But now I see my CPU is not enough for what I am doing on my PC.

So what I do on my PC? Play games. This part is quite good. I can run most of games in almost full settings (GTA 5 etc) but my CPU is on 70-90% of usage. In PUBG it's around 80-95% (Low setting except render distance).

I like streaming Recently I started streaming again. And since I have second monitor I can see that most times my CPU is 80-100% depending on which game I am playing. Right now I encode the video with the GPU (nvidia nvec), so GPU is taking the hard part but still OBS need something to do, so mostly it takes 10% of usage. I stream in 720p60fps (Internet doesn't allow me to do 1080p30fps or higher). During the streaming I also host MP games (strategy games) and run some background programs like Chrome, Discord, Bots for Chat, etc.

Time to time some fans they can see that streaming is laggy and I see in OBS that is buffering and losing frames. I don't want to go lower on quality settings. I just want to have nice picture for the viewers.

Photoshop, video editing, rendering. For pictures and graphics I am using Photoshop. It currently seems like I have enough power. For editing and video rendering, I don't think there's enough power. It takes a long time to make a 20 minute video, like 40-50 minutes to render in fullHD. Just for fun I am rendering Also fractals, but it's not important.

So I believe that it's not good to have CPU at 80-100% usage all the time.

My current build

  • CPU: Intel Core i5-3550p
  • GPU: Nvidia GTX 1060(GB)
  • RAM: 16 gigabytes 1600MHz (two slots)
  • MB: Asrock Z77 pro3
  • Drives: 1 TB Western Digital(Other data) and 120GM SSD kingstone (OS programs some games) PSU: Corsair 600 Watts

Budget: Well this is the hard part. I can use around 500-700 dollars depending on the CPU (that's why the range explaining below).

My opinion. Since I have an old CPU (maybe causing the issue) I also need a new MB and RAMs, so the budget includes those things. Now I am considering Intel Core I5-8400 or Intel Core I7-8700. Between those there is a difference of around 200 dollars (which is the reason for a 500-700 budget). I am not sure if the power of I7 is worthy to spend money on it for what I am doing on pc most of the time.

Last words: I want to buy a new HW for the next 4-5 years. Also, I don't like CPU with K version, because I never do overclokings and I like coolers that comes with CPU (good experience Intel-3550p). At the same time, I am not fan of AMD because I had a bad experience with them.

  • Do you care about having the additional flexibility/quality offered by software encoding, or is NVEC good enough? Would you be fine with a K/X skew CPU if you didn't have to overclock it? Would you be fine with a one-button overclock? Why don't you like AMD?
    – JMY1000
    Dec 27 '17 at 9:15
  • NVEC seems to be ok now, but never know what will happen in future. Well K/X are extra money and if i will not oberclock its waste of money right? One-button overclock never hear about that. I dont like AMD cuz drivers and support for SW. My friend has AMD and has only issue with it. But if you give me some good reasons maybe i will switch to AMD
    – Fremen
    Dec 27 '17 at 10:43
  • K/X would be wasted if you're not overclocking, but depending, it might be your only option if you end up with software rendering and want to stay Intel on (read: X299 platform.) One button overclocking is becoming fairly common on newer boards. For your workload, it seems like Ryzen/Threadripper's high core count would be extremely enticing. I'm not sure what driver/support issues your friend ran into (it's the same CPU architecture after all); all issues I'm aware of are either fixed or are in the realm of server related features.
    – JMY1000
    Dec 27 '17 at 10:54
  • If you plan on using NVEC though, I'm questioning why you even need a CPU upgrade. Wouldn't you want a GPU upgrade?
    – JMY1000
    Dec 27 '17 at 10:55
  • Well the reason is that i am worried about this CPU most of time 80-90% usage.
    – Fremen
    Dec 27 '17 at 11:44

Since you are going to upgrade your CPU, you should consider AMD. I don't know what problems you encountered in the past, but the latest Ryzen CPUs are well worth their price.

I had the same hesitation but I bought the 2700X to give it a try - paired with an x470 board. It's a beast, it can do rendering, streaming, gaming, all at the same time. I believe it's the most VFM option these days - hands down. And the best part is some new AMD technologies that allow the CPU to reach its maximum overclock abilities automatically, without tweaking a single setting. (note: I am affiliated with this site)

Intel has a bad availability these days, so prices have gone way high for their value. That said, a 8700K would also cover your needs - consider it being the same as 2700X performance-wise.


Have a look at this link. Your CPU needs a good upgrade, as you said. Since you want something for a few years ahead, I would recommend an something like i7-6700 or newer. Because you said you had a budget, don't look at the X-series. These things are just overpriced I think. But since you are at it, consider upgrade RAM as well.

Here are my recommendations:

  1. ASRock z370 PRO4 for $145 USD

  2. Intel i5-8600k for $321 USD

And just consider upgrading RAM to like 32GB if you want

  • I'm going to question this. Especially given the availability of the 8600K right now, the fact that it only gives a 2c/2t upgrade, the extremely high price of DDR4 right now, the fact that he's using NVEC, and the relatively low cost of Ryzen/Threadripper, I don't think the 8600K is a good choice.
    – JMY1000
    Dec 28 '17 at 4:35
  • @JMY1000 Well the thing is I am not too familiar with "non-Intel" CPU's so my experience is limited but thanks for the advice :)
    – TGamer
    Dec 28 '17 at 6:50

The used market is awash w/nice OC mboards and CPUs. Intel's i7-980X cpu in their DX58XSO will save you $$$ and enable you to use your GTX1060. The chipset on the DX58SO has OC performance adjustments for bus, cpu, mem, etc., in BIOS. All this is available on the used market for pennies on the dollar. Some places even sell warranties for a little cash. You already know some research/reading the specs to assure this will fit your need is a MUST DO!. :-) Your DDR3 1600Mhz will wrk in the board and perhaps can be OCd. Look to possibly find an improved monitor for high refresh and Mhz to shoot at 38xx X 26xx DPI. AS you have mentined, BUDGET determines the buy :-). Happy unprades and good succes. TTYL Martin in G'ville

  • I'm going to disagree with this choice too–not because I dislike used hardware but because of the compromises you make on the X58 platform: either you max out at a locked hex-core xeon, or a quad-core i7. While neither of these are bad persay, I don't think it's the right option, since it forces a choice between single threaded performance and a higher core count. OP also clearly has the budget to spend on a better system. That's not to say something like the X5650 can't game–they most definitely can–I just don't think it's the best choice.
    – JMY1000
    Jan 3 '18 at 5:34
  • Sidenote: Having used Intel's desktop boards, really not a fan. They tend to be fairly cheap but also fairly locked down. For example, the DX58SO is capped at 16GB of memory rather than the usual 24GB.
    – JMY1000
    Jan 3 '18 at 5:36

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