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Best gaming cpu/mobo combo cost wise?

draemn

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Just wondering if anyone happens to have some general knowledge on what's the best cost efficiency combo for gaming.

Last time I checked, B550 prices were really high and zen 3 ended up being pretty expensive and overkill for my needs, so I'm stepping away from going that route. That makes me think that B450 (if you can even find stock) with a ryzen 3600 would be a great combo. I haven't even looked at the intel side of things, but basically doing a new build and want a CPU that's around the 3600 level of performance (the 3300x was on my list until I realized the thing is never in stock) and want to over-clock on air. I don't need 8 cores, 6 is just fine.

Edit: upon further research, I'm leaning towards the R5 3600 still offering the best value for high end gaming. Intel just doesn't compete against the 3600. There has also been a significant improvement in offerings for budget B550, meaning some boards now compete with B450 on cost.

As far as motherboards go, I'm looking at either $110 on the low end with B450 if I really want to go budget and still over-clock. On the high end, I'm not seeing any reason to go past the $170 price point except maybe a few bucks for front panel usb-c support. $170 seems to offer a lot of good options for over-clocking boards, with the B450 Tomahawk being the one to beat. I've also come to the conclusion I don't care about pcie 4.0 over 3.0 since I plan to get a 3070.


B450 options:
asrock b450 pro4 ATX or mATX - real budget build, but it will run a 3600 @4.1ghz, has PCIe x1.0 as top slot $110 or $90
Asus rog strix b450-F gaming atx - improved VRM and very stylish, has PCIe x1.0 as top slot $170
MSI b450 tomahawk max atx - considered one of the best over-clockers in the b450 series $175

B550 options:
msi b550-a pro atx - adds in usb-c front panel, decent VRM for overclocking $190
asus tuf gaming b550m-plus - adequate overclocking, has PCIe x1.0 as top slot $150 (if it actually were $150, not sure where I got this price)
msi b55m pro-vdh wifi - adds in usb-c front panel, decent VRM for overclocking $145
 
Last edited:

Bond007

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Sounds like you have pretty much answered your own question. B450 and 3600 is still a great setup for the vast majority of people. B550 is more expensive, but it is mostly because manufacturers seem to have raised the bar on most models. This has left a gap in basic/budget boards.

Personally I would wait until black Friday, since I expect you will find some great prices on ryzen 3000 CPUs as the new ones are released. For a gaming rig, the IPC gains of ryzen 5000 may justify the cost. It is just a matter if you want to take the higher cost now, or possibly have an upgrade itch sooner.

You can't win them all. Personal call.
 

djbrad

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If you don't plan to overclock, a good basic a520 motherboard will do the job and will be compatible with ryzen 5000 without flashing a bios with an older cpu.

I tend to look for one with bios flashback now, as you can update the bios without a cpu.
 

draemn

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I think A520 is out, I do want to over-clock a bit and even though some A520 do support over-clocking, it's quite a limited chipset and it'll be a lot more limiting to work on/connectivity.
 

draemn

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right now I'm leaning towards the B450 board: https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/product...us-elite-atx-AM4-motherboard-b450-aorus-elite
or

I did find a few B550 boards in the same price range (very few though), is there any reason I would want to pick B550 over B450? Nothing jumped out at me as really being necessary on the B550 for "future proofing." The hard part is also doing the research to check that I can do some modest over-clocking on the chosen motherboard.
 
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Izerous

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NVMe raid 0 in thoery woudl benefit from the pci generational improvement but JBOD I don't think saturates it yet fort the board to be the bottleneck vs the drive. Someone please correct me if there is a single drive that can currently saturate it.
 

lowfat

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draemn

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Isn't PCIe 4.0 on the CPU, so popping in a zen 3 chip in the future would give you 4.0?

But really, 4.0 isn't that big as from what I've ready the 3090 gets a whopping 3% improvement going to gen 4.0
 

Sagath

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Isn't PCIe 4.0 on the CPU, so popping in a zen 3 chip in the future would give you 4.0?

But really, 4.0 isn't that big as from what I've ready the 3090 gets a whopping 3% improvement going to gen 4.0
Negative, cpu + mobo must support it.

Also, there may be significant improvement with the new direct GPU/SSD technologies leveraging the additional speed capability of PCIE4.

We also just learned today that a 500 chipset + 5000 CPU + 6000 GPU will have proprietary uplift technologies baked in, too. This could be a factor of chosing 500 over 400, if you're going amd cpu+gpu too.
 

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