Upgrade: AMD FX-9590 & ASUS Sabertooth FX990 R2.0
It has been 6 years since I upgraded my pc. My previous setup was an Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 which in all honesty has served me well throughout the years. The truth is that I am bit of a computer geek, I would upgrade my PC every 6 months, actually I was a FPS freak. I refused to own a PC that would drop below 60fps in my favorite games. Then Crysis came out and I gave up ;).
A week ago I decided to take the plunge and upgrade my PC to cope with the latest games:
CPU: AMD FX-9590
Motherboard: ASUS Sabertooth FX990 R2.0
Ram: Kingston HyperX 16GB(2x8GB) 1600 DDR (KHX16C9T3K2/16X)
The icing on the top was an Intel SSD drive (300GB S3500)
First impression is that it was blinding fast for Windows + apps. Probably down to the SSD in all honesty. The AMD FX-9590 is definitely a beast in terms of raw horse power. Bang for buck I can’t fault it. Performance, very satisfied… The bottleneck is now my graphics card (ATI Radeon 6870) that I will probably upgrade within a year or so.
However… I have had some trouble with this setup. The problem lies with the processor load temperatures. I am using an air cooler (Noctua NH-U14S): This is a beast of an air cooler, at the time of purchase it was the best performing tower cooler.
I get around 42c idle & 72c load (bear in mind this is summer time in the UK, ambient temperature is around 24c).
Watching movies, general ‘application’ usage I had no issues. When it came to gaming, my pc would completely freeze. No BSOD or restarts, just a frozen screen with no mouse cursor or keyboard feedback. A hard reset would remedy the problem.
After hours of scouring the internet for problems and solutions, tinkering with BIOS settings and so forth, the fix was to reduce the CPU frequency from the stock 4.7GHz to a mere 4GHz. I have put it down to overheating & excessive power consumption. That is a short term fix since AMD recommend sufficient cooling. I do not think an air cooler will suffice (ps I have adequate air flow in my case – one cold air intake in the front, 2 fans blowing hot air out from the top and side – cables are neat and do not hinder air flow).
A long term fix will involve a open loop water cooling solution and some fans over the motherboard chip-set heatsinks. That itself is another project!
The Good Bit
Okay so I am a website developer, I have my own VPS server along with what work offer in the likes of Linode and Digital Ocean (SSD based VPS). I also have my own 1U rack mount server that I used for local debugging at home when I have no Internet.
My new desktop BLOWS THEM AWAY. For instance, large Magento database restores from MYSQL dumps are noticeably quicker. Loading a Magento Page without any kind of caching enabled is probably at least 5 times faster than my developer boxes and faster than work’s live production server (Granted it’s a single user on a single machine but still I was pretty impressed).
I think this will definitely increase my productivity instead of waiting around for the likes of xdebug to kick in… We all know how slow that can be with Magento 😉