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Helping with tech questions - TweakTown's Ask the Experts - Page 1


TweakTown's Ask the Experts


AMD FX-8350 or Intel Core i7-4790K for video production/rendering PC?

Question asked by Mike from United States | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | CPUs, Chipsets & SoCs Content | Posted: 2 days, 5 hours ago

I am trying to decide between a FX8350 set up vs a i7 4790K set up.

 

I will use the pc for gaming, graphic design, 3D design and rendering and video editing.

 

I am moving up from a old q6600 system.

 

I don't have to have the best, just something that works well. The less money to spend the better, I can get other stuff I need.

 

My gpu is a GTX660 that will transfer to the new build until I can buy a GTX970 or GTX980.

 

Which pc set up should I go for?


Hi Mike,

 

This is a good question, and something that is easy to answer. The AMD FX-8350 isn't a bad CPU by any means, but for graphic/3D design, rendering and video editing, I would sway toward the Intel quite heavily. Even in gaming situations the Intel chip will be superior, but it doesn't make the AMD CPU a bad purchase at all.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/2/0/201_01_amd-fx-8350-intel-core-i7-4790k-video-production-rendering-pc.jpg

 

Intel's Core i7-4790K is a bloody awesome processor, and something that will do some serious number crunching for you. When you want to jump out of work and into some games, it will handle all of those like the best of them.

 

As for the GPU, the GeForce GTX 660 will be fine until you buy that GTX 970 or GTX 980.

Which GPU should I choose out of the GeForce GTX 970 and GTX 960s?

Question asked by Rakshit from India | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Video Cards Content | Posted: 3 days, 7 hours ago

Hi there,

 

This is Rakshit from India. I am about to buying a GPU, where I'm choosting between 4 GPUs: MSI GTX 970 4GB, ASUS GTX 970 4GB, Zotac GTX 970 4GB & Zotac GTX 960 2GB.

 

Which of these is best for me?

 

I heard a concern of VRAM issue with all GTX 970 is this a serious issue.

 

Plz help me out.


Hi Rakshit,

 

To start it off, any of those four video cards will be a great purchase. You will handle any and all games you throw at it, with the three GeForce GTX 970s being able to handle every resolution right up to 4K. As for the GTX 960, even that would handle nearly every game at 1080p or 1440p at 60FPS with some tweaks to the in-game visual settings.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/2/0/200_01_gpu-choose-geforce-gtx-970-960s.jpg

 

If it were up to me, I'd recommend the ZOTAC GeForce GTX 970 AMP! Extreme Edition. This card handled everything for me right up to 4K without a problem.

 

As for the 4GB of VRAM issue, I wouldn't worry about it. Sure, it's there, but it won't negatively effect many people. I was playing countless hours of Battlefield 4 at 1080p, 1440p and 4K during my testing with it and never ran into a problem. The only time I did was when I cranked everything up to maximum, including AA, and started flooding over 3.5GB of VRAM. There aren't many games out there that will use 3.5GB+ of VRAM at less than 1440p.

 

Hopefully we've helped you out here, Rakshit!

My video card is overheating! What should I do?

Question asked by William from Philippines | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Video Cards Content | Posted: 5 days ago

I have a problem! My NVIDIA GeForce GT 430 1GB video card crashes when I play games like DOTA 2. It starts off okay, with around 60-70FPS but after five minutes the fRAMe rate drops all of the sudden to 20-30FPS then the game crashed.

 

I've taken a look at GPU-Z and noticed that the card is reaching 110C!! What should I do?!


Hey there William,

 

I don't think there's much you can do, as it sounds like there is a serious problem with the cooling set up on the video card. I would suggest a few things:

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/199_01_video-card-overheating.png

 

  • Check for dust, or a built up of dust on your heat sink and fan.
  • Check to see if the fan is still spinning, especially when it's under load (in a game).
  • Swap out the card with another (if you can) and see if the problem is resolved.

 

With you already checking GPU-Z and noticing that it's hitting 110C, I would suspect there's not much you can do apart from replace the entire video card, or the cooler. For a card like the GeForce GT 430, it would most likely be cheaper to replace the card itself.

Should I wait for Windows 10 to be released before buying a new PC?

Question asked by Sonya from Australia | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Software Content | Posted: Feb 12, 2015 11:21 am

Hey there TweakTown,

 

I'm in the market for a new Ultrabook to replace my Windows 7 PC, but I've heard that Windows 10 is coming out later this year. Should I bite the bullet and buy a Windows 8/8.1 machine now, or wait until Windows 10 is released?

 

My current laptop is working fine, but I want something a bit faster, with a higher resolution screen and maybe touchscreen support.

 

Thanks!


Hi Sonya,

 

If Windows 10 were over a year away, I would recommend waiting. If your current PC was having issues, and/or about to die, I'd recommend purchasing now. But, if your PC is working fine, and you don't have a dire need to rush out and get one, wait it out.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/198_11_wait-windows-10-released-before-buying-new-pc.jpg

 

Windows 10 is expected in the second half of the year, so we should start to see Windows 10-powered devices at Computex in June, if not it shouldn't be too much after June that we'll start to see proper Windows 10 products unveiled.

 

My advice? Wait. Your PC is still working, and Windows 10 should deliver a new experience that Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 skipped over. If your PC dies in the meantime, purchasing a Windows 8.1-powered Ultrabook isn't going to be a bad thing, as you'll get an upgrade to Windows 10 when it comes out, anyway.

The fan on my video card is broken, what should I do?

Question asked by Isiac from United States | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Video Cards Content | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

I have a GALAXY NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 1GB video card. At some point while in storage dust got in the card and the fan stopped working properly causing my computer to shut down if I didn't make sure the fan was spinning.

 

This lead me to remove the already partially dislodged fRAMe to remove the fan to clean the fan itself.

 

This solved the problem but now I can't really get the fan to stay on the card...

 

The card gets warm so tape won't work and I'm wary about using glue.

 

What's the best way to keep the fan fRAMe on the card?


Hey there Isiac,

 

If the fan itself is broken, which by the sounds of it, it sounds like it is. You have a few options here, which we'll walk you through now.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/197_09_fan-video-card-broken.jpg

 

First, you could replace the heat sink and fan - which will need to happen if you want to have it 100% fixed. This will cost you $40-$50 or more, depending on the type and quality of product you want to buy.

 

You've said that the card doesn't work unless the fan is spinning? How hot is the card getting? Is there anyway you could mount a fan near the side of your computer, or inside of your case? This way you could continue to use the computer without having to buy a new HSF or a new GPU.

 

Third, replace the entire video card. This is the most expensive option, but you get a brand new card, with a brand new cooler, and a full warranty.

Should I upgrade to the new GeForce GTX 960?

Question asked by Steven from United States | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Video Cards Content | Posted: Jan 26, 2015 6:15 am

Hello TweakTown!

 

I've been waiting for NVIDIA to release a mid-range GPU since they announced the GTX 970 and GTX 980 cards last year, but couldn't afford either. Now that the GeForce GTX 960 is here, do you recommend it? I mostly game at 1080p, but I've been thinking about buying a 1440p resolution monitor. Is there a good upgrade path there? Keep in mind I'm upgrading from an old GeForce GTX 660 video card.

 

Regards,

Steve.


Hey Steve!

 

After a long time away from our Ask the Experts section, we're back to answer questions and you're first on the list with this new question. Yes, definitely, 100%, yes. The new GeForce GTX 960 is a winner in our books, and for just $199-$209, you're getting yourself a card that is more than capable at 1080p.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/196_01_upgrade-new-geforce-gtx-960.jpg

 

In our review, we found that 1080p and 1440p performed great - but at 1440p if you want 60FPS+ you'll need to adjust the detail settings in some games. As for power consumption, you're looking at less than 250W total system power consumption, which is another great thing about the Maxwell-powered GTX 960.

 

You can feel free to buy a GTX 960 without regret, you will absolutely love it, especially moving from the old GTX 660!

Which GPU should I buy with a budget of $1500?

Question asked by Chazzy from United States | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Video Cards Content | Posted: Aug 21, 2014 6:25 am

I confusing to choose a 'plethora' GPU around the market these days.

 

I like gaming and audio/video editing. I already do research at any web reviewer, but still I didn't got any idea.

 

At least at 2560 X 1440 res my GPU can give a solid performance. as I see there is no GPU for now can give a solid performance for 4K gaming.

 

I hope an advise from you, according I have budget around $1500 for my GPU.

 

Which is better a Sapphire OC R9295 X2 OR Crossfire MSI R9 290X Lightning OR 2 WAY GIGABYTE GTX780Ti GHz Edition.

 

here is my system:

 

1. gigabyte z97x g1 gaming wifi bk

2. intel core i7 4790k

3. (4X8GB) corsair vengeance pro

4. intel SSD 730 480 GB

5. evga 1200w p2 PSU

 

 

 

Thanks.


Hi there Chazzy,

 

This is a great question, and I'm sure I'm going to be hit by quite a lot of flack when I post this up to the site. But, here we go. You're running a 2560x1440, or 1440p display, and you want some serious gaming performance, with a great budget to spend - $1500.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/194_18_which_gpu_should_i_buy_with_a_budget_of_1500.jpg

 

All three options you've provided me with are great, you could choose any single one of them, and you're going to get not only a kick ass gaming experience, but an amazing all-purpose GPU setup. Let's start by taking one of the options away: the Radeon R9 295X2 option.

 

The reason is, it has an all-in-one watercooler, something that isn't as easy to setup as a install-and-forget GPU like the other options you've given me. The Radeon R9 295X2 is a great GPU, don't get me wrong, but if I had to choose between two faster GPUs than a dual-GPU offering, I would nearly always choose the dual-GPU setup.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/194_12_which_gpu_should_i_buy_with_a_budget_of_1500.jpg

 

Now the decision is between the Radeon R9 290X Crossfire setup and the GeForce GTX 780 Ti SLI setup. But this is where I'm going to do things a little different. Normally I'd tell you to go for one over the other, but I'm going to tell you to choose either the Crossfire, or SLI setup because both of them are going to give you very similar results.

 

Personally, I would be happy with either of those setups, and I currently have two setups powered by virtually the same GPUs. I have one setup with Radeon R9 290Xs in Crossfire, with another running GeForce GTX 780s in SLI. I love both of the setups for different reasons.

 

No matter what you choose, you've chosen three different options that will ensure you have a great gaming experience - and something that I find funny is that you said "there is no GPU for now" that can give you "solid performance for 4K gaming" yet all three of these options will. If you wanted to game at 4K, you'll be fine on any option you've said here today.

Which monitor upgrade should I go for? 4K or 1440p at 144Hz?

Question asked by Corey from Australia | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Displays & Projectors Content | Posted: Aug 6, 2014 5:50 am

Hey TweakTown,

 

Right now, I use a Samsung S27A950D, which is a 1920x1080 panel at 120Hz. I love to play games, and I really enjoy the fluidness of the 120Hz on the Samsung monitor I have now. But, I have a friend who owns the ASUS PB78Q, which is a 2560x1440 display with a 60Hz refresh, and the higher resolution is really tempting.

 

I've been looking at buying one of two monitors, either a decent 4K monitor, or the new ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q gaming monitor. The best part about the ASUS ROG Swift monitor, is that it has a resolution of 2560x1440, but a refresh rate of 144Hz thanks to its NVIDIA G-Sync technology.

 

I have two GeForce GTX 780s in SLI, and would like to know what you think I should do - go for 4K, or the 144Hz monitor?


Hey Corey,

 

This is a really great question, as this is a crossroads for most people - the pixel heavy 4K monitors, or the refresh rate smoothness that 120Hz and beyond provides. I personally have both in my office, 120Hz TN-based panels, and high-end 4K panels, and to tell you the truth, I love both.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/193_08_which_monitor_upgrade_should_i_go_for_4k_or_1440p_at_144hz.jpg

 

You've got two great options here, but I think if you're playing games more than anything, you should really go for the ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q. Until that monitor, I would've found it very hard to recommend you getting a 120Hz monitor, as they were all 1920x1080, apart from some non-name brand panels.

 

The ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q has the high-resolution you're after - 2560x1440 - and while it's not 3840x2160 or 4K/Ultra HD, it is a huge step up on 1080p. You mentioned that you've seen your friend's 2560x1440 ASUS panel, which is a great monitor in itself. I actually have that panel sitting here at home, and I really love it. I'm in the process of acquiring one of the new ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q monitors myself, too.

 

4K is great, but the 60Hz part of it is really limiting. Then you have to have the GPU power sitting behind you to drive 3840x2160, which isn't easy. Your GeForce GTX 780 SLI setup should handle it, but you'll be hitting your 3GB of VRAM limit pretty quickly. Performance wise, driving 144FPS+ at 2560x1440 isn't going to be easy either.

 

At the end of the day, I think the ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q is the one for you, unless you really want the 4K monitor. I think it'll be a better transition, as you'll receive a huge injection of additional pixels thanks to the 2560x1440 resolution, and continue using the great high refresh rate.

 

One thing though: it's an NVIDIA G-Sync monitor, so you're going to need to have two high-end NVIDIA GPUs to properly drive it. Your GTX 780s will do, but with the money saved not going for a 4K monitor, I would wait and see what NVIDIA launch next month, as you could sell your 780s and grab yourself some brand new fresh-out-of-the-oven GeForce GTX 880s.

Which smartphone should I buy? Sony Xperia Z2, LG G3 or Galaxy S5?

Question asked by Akshay from India | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Mobile Devices Content | Posted: Jul 23, 2014 3:55 am

Hi,

 

I'm wanting to purchase a new smartphone, but I'm stuck between deciding on the Samsung Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z2 and the new LG G3 smartphones. Right now, I'm using the Galaxy S4 from Samsung, and I have no issues spending more money if I get the best phone for me, which one should I buy?


Hi Akshay,

 

I have all three of those smartphones sitting next to me, and I love parts of each of them. If I had to choose between them all, I think I would push you toward the LG G3. The G3 is the latest out of all of them, has less UI bloat, and some truly great specs and features.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/192_08_which_smartphone_should_i_buy_sony_xperia_z2_lg_g3_or_galaxy_s5.jpg

 

For one, we have a 5.5-inch 2560x1440 screen, much higher than the Full HD 1920x1080 displays on the Xperia Z2 and Galaxy S5. LG's rear-facing camera is laser-focused, which doesn't do a huge job to make it stand out from the rest, but it does a damn good job at snapping photos and taking video. I think the G3 camera is one of the best out right now, especially when you're shooting 4K video and watching it on the 1440p display.

 

Since you've already got the Galaxy S4, it will be a little harder shifting to the LG or Sony smartphones if you're tied into the Samsung account on your phone. If you are using more Google services, and aren't tied deeply into Samsung apps, the move will be easy. In that case, I think you will really love the G3.

Does NVIDIA's SLI technology improve Blu-ray playback at all?

Question asked by Vipin from India | Answered by Anthony Garreffa | Video Cards Content | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 3:29 am

By using NVIDIA's SLI technology, will I notice any improvement in my video quality for Blu-ray rips? On fast scenes, it appears as though I'm missing something on the screen, with my monitors refresh rate of 60Hz. I'm using the NVIDIA GeForce GT 610 GPU.

 

If SLI technology helps improve the video playback, can you tell me what I have to do to get it performing better?


Hi Vipin,

 

I would say that the problem you're experiencing is due to your machine - maybe software, or your CPU not able to keep up. Your question is cryptic, so I'm going to presume that you're getting a fRAMe rate drop during intense/fast moving scenes.

 

TweakTown image asktheexperts/1/9/191_06_does_nvidia_s_sli_technology_improve_blu_ray_playback_at_all.png

 

This could be due to the Blu-ray rip you're using, have you tried a genuine Blu-ray?

 

Secondly, your monitor refreshes at 60Hz, or 60 times per second, while your Blu-ray movies (no matter if it's a rip, or a genuine image or Blu-ray disc) run at 24Hz, or 24FPS. So it would have nothing to do with your monitor, or its refresh rate.

 

If it doesn't happen on all movies, and just during the intense/fast moving scenes, I would try a different movie file to see if it happens. I'm presuming you're using .mkv files, so maybe try an .avi file to see if there's still a problem. You could also try downloading a codec pack, or if you have one, an alternative codec pack.

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