6700k paired with 3080 (bottleneck?)

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Oct 31, 2011
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Hello everyone,

I usually upgrade my gpu every other generation. I currently have a 6700k (overclocked 4.6) with a gtx 1080 and plan to game on my 4K tv (120 hz, g-sync) via hdmi 2.1. Do you think a gtx 3080 would be bottlenecked due to my older sky lake cpu at 4K resolution. My current specs are:

i7 6700k at oc’d 4.6 mhz
1080 gtx
16 GB Ram DDR4 3000
Asus Hero Mobo (pci express 3.0)
750 watt psu

I would prefer to keep the rest of my pc and replace just the gpu unless bottlenecks are inevitable. Thanks in advance.
 

somebrains

[H]ard|Gawd
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Nov 10, 2013
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Depends on the games he plays.
He might notice less stuttering like my buddy on a similar build.
He’s currently on a 2080ti feeding a stupid expensive Asus 4k 144hz monitor.
Back then he paid nearly what a used Corolla costs back when that panel launched.
980ti era as I recall.
I’ve literally been on him for months to part out that build but that dude literally burns $ on the worst buys.

At least the 4k guys can finally play MMOs and Mordhau at more than 30fps low graphics now.
Depends on how busy the game is, bc the really cpu bound single player games like 9600k ish frequency and they’ll flatten their performance all the way up to 10900k.
^ means you feed them a clocked 9600k as baseline and they don’t seem to get much more at 4k if you went 10900k.
Just gotta hit that minimum 6c at high frequency, anything more is kinda diminishing returns.
 

Rkele

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I'm also with 6700K and will continue to do so, until Intel actually makes some kind of advancement in CPU-front. 10900K's benefit would have been minimal and this is over FOUR years after my 6700K-build.
Considered AMD too for a while, but don't want to go with AM4, which is also already 4 years old.
I'll wait until AM5, unless Intel gets their sh*t straight before that.

3090 will be my GPU and I don't expect much difficulties with current 4-year old CPU-Mobo-combo. This older PCIe generation might bottleneck at with very high framerates, which won't be a problem for 4K gamers.
Big Navi might be good, but they're 1.5 months late with their release, so they will lose a lot of enthusiast's money to Nvidia.
 

Canon

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It is hilarious how what you are describing is literally almost my exact situation except for your GPU (I have a 2080Ti currently that I bought at launch to replace my GTX 980)... Even the 4.6 Ghz OC on the 6700k, haha.

Personally I am planning to upgrade within the next few months once hardware availability returns to normal and we find out where we stand after AMD Zen 3 / whatever Intel is up to...

My core components, CPU, RAM, Mobo is all 5 years old. It is all in a 9 year old Corsiar 650d case which I love, but the design is outdated and won't accommodate anything more than a 280mm rad up top and the hard to come by 200mm front intake is something I would like to move away from... I had my 9 year old Corsiar AX 850 PSU go bad earlier this year and i'm down to a Corsair RM 750 that I pilfered from my old 2600k system that I was using for VR / HTPC since PSUs were in such short supply at the time... They still are really...

I personally feel like I am right on the edge performance wise with some of the newer games. I have to be careful about things going on in the background, forget multi tasking like having a video or stream playing on my secondary monitor while playing some of the newest AAA games... The CPU is just enough under ideal circumstances for some newer games, at least that is how I feel... Would it bottleneck a GPU even faster than a 2080Ti... Maybe not if you are looking at raw numbers under ideal conditions... If you are OK with creating those ideal conditions, could be fine still...

I also personally feel like more than 5 years on PC hardware you are looking at reliability issues and by that time all support for new drivers, BIOS updates etc. is done for the most part.

In my opinion if you are moving to RTX 3xxx, I think that justifies an upgrade of the core components at this point. To be honest though, I don't see the harm in slapping in a new GPU and seeing how you feel about it. I have a strong suspicion that most people are probably going to have a hard time getting their hands on these new GPUs until the end of the year or early next year... I guess we'll see, maybe Nvidia will surprise us...

If you want to better understand bottlnecking with current hardware, at least as it relates to the benchmark experience, check out these videos from GamersNexus. If you watch some of the other videos they do, you will find benchmark charts that include 6700k or similar processors, but most of those charts are showing 1080p gaming which doesn't represent the 4k gaming experience, so...


 

VirtualMirage

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I, too, am currently rocking a 4+ year old 6700k with a GTX 1080 FE feeding to a 4K/60hz monitor and Valve Index VR headset. I am currently working on a new build project to replace it and will most likely be going to a RTX 3080. I was leaning more towards the RTX 3090 for the higher memory (10GB seems like it will run short quickly while 24GB is overkill, I need something in the middle). But since I am using a fairly compact case, Fractal Design Node 804, the RTX 3090 should fit but will require me to remove the front intake case fan on the bottom. And since I will have a radiator installed in the top, the front intake case fan on the top won't fit either. So all the intake air would be based on the work of the radiator fans and the video card via a negative pressure effect. Not sure I wanted to do that since it would me the fans would have to work harder, which means louder. There is plenty of ventilation in the case via the bottom, front, top, and back. So due to that conundrum, I may stick with the RTX 3080 and just upgrade early when they do a Ti or Super release with more memory. For how much a 3090 goes for, I can probably sell the 3080 and upgrade to a Super or Ti in the future for a total investment that is equal to or less than a 3090 on its own. I do plan to eventually tie it into the custom water loop I am building, but it most likely will not be done for months after release and the system is built. The new heatsink and shroud looks to be a challenge to remove so I am not sure yet if that is something I want to tackle until I see some videos of how it is done.

Anyways, as for the CPU, I was trying to wait for the Zen 3 but decided to hop on the Zen 2 bandwagon so that I can build the system out now. While AM4 is on its way out, it and the X570 chipset will be able to handle the Zen 3 without issue. So I have a Ryzen 9 3900 XT to hold me over until the Zen 3 release, which then I will probably go with the replacement to the 3950X. I am usually an Intel only user, I only used AMD when I had home servers back in the Phenom days. I would have stuck with Intel but they have gotten too lazy these days. Their CPUs still suffer from quite a few exploits that are only being software or microcode addressed (which impacts performance), they are having trouble shrinking their die, and their power consumption (which used to be in their favor) is growing too much. Meanwhile, their chipsets lag behind the competition when it comes to total USB endpoints per controller (a limitation I keep hitting with my current system), PCIE4, and M.2.

My current build in progress:
Fractal Design Node 804
Ryzen 9 3900XT
Asus Crosshair VIII Impact X570
32GB G.Skill Trident Neo DDR4 3600 CL16
2x 2TB Seagate Firecuda 520 M.2 (OS, apps, and games)
1x 4TB Seagate Firecuda 120 SSD (Photos, media files, etc.)
1x 256GB Corsair Performance Pro SSD (Lightroom database)
1x 1TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD (Misc., might move Lightroom database to here)
Corsair AX1000 PSU
2x Corsair XR7 240mm radiators (240mm x 54mm)
Primochill white tubing
Mix of necessary connectors from Corsair and Alpha Cooling
EKWB EK-Quantum Kinetic TBE 200 D5 Reservoir/Pump
Optimus Foundation CPU water block for AMD (still waiting for delivery)
RTX 3080 or RTX 3090 (waiting to order)
8x Be Quiet! Silent Wings 3 120mm HS fans for case and radiators (4 are PWM for radiators, 4 are 12v for case)

I have everything on hand except for the water block and the GPU. The reservoir and pump just arrived today and its mounting bracket should be delivered today as well. It's going to be an interesting build. I have been double and triple measuring everything down to the millimeter to make sure I don't have any fitment issues. Here's hoping they are correct.

I am also thinking of going a custom cable route and also buying some right angle connectors for the 24-pin, EPS, and USB 3.0 20-pin header. But those might be later down the road, we will see.
 

bigbluefe

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If you run at 4k, I bet the CPU won't even matter. All the games you play were designed to run on toaster console CPUs.
 

Advil

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It depends on whether you are talking about an enthusiasts opinion on performance or a price per dollar opinion. Until your CPU becomes utterly obsolete (not quite there yet), you are always going to get far more performance in games by upgrading the graphics card whether or not your CPU is "ideal."

In two more years though you'll probably have to change boards and CPUs because you'll need newer architecture like PCIE 4.0.

But if it's between getting the graphics card and overhauling the guts of the system and you can only do one right now... yes obviously upgrade the video card. You can always gut the rest of the system sometime over the next 2 years but it's not urgent.
 

Laffles

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I worry the same after every GPU launch, still have my trusty 8700k and doubt I'll need to upgrade for 3 years... sure we'll probs lose about 3fps give or take this gen, does not warrant a 400+ upgrade though.

If you had a 2500k though for example, you'd def have to upgrade
 
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Thanks for the replies. I’ll probably wait til AMDs new cpu announcement, read up on some benchmarks before I decide to overhaul the system or upgrade just the GPUs.
 

Ricky T

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Forget 6700k, even 4790k is still decent for gaming and shouldn't hold back a 3080 much at 4k.
A 4790k can't even maintain 60 or even 50 FPS in some newer games and would be a laughable bottleneck for a card even half as fast as a 3080. I already posted this before in another thread but my 9900k at stock delivers a 100 FPS in the same parts of Watch Dogs 2 that were dropping into the 50s and 40s on an oced 4770k. It's really going to depend on the games that you're playing but the CPU bottleneck can be absolutely massive in some games.

I would sell that old setup while it's actually still worth a little bit of money and go ahead and get the new Ryzen CPUs when they come out in a month or so. That way not only will you have a proper CPU that will get full use out of a 3080 and any GPU you want to upgrade to for the next several years, you'll also have PCIe 4.0 for those next GPU upgrades and for that nvme SSD that you really need down the road.
 
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Don't listen to the FUD in this thread.

Do the upgrade for the 3080, then re-evaluate. Even then your best bet for max gaming perf will be to wait until after Zen 3 is launched.

A 4790K v a 9900K could not be a 40fps to 100fps jump. I don't doubt someone experienced that, but I would guess that had far more to do with the old system, than the CPU exclusively. I had a 5820K (haswell) at 4.3ghz for a very long time and got well over 100fps in most modern games @ 1440p with my 1080ti. The 3080 is going to perform at 4k, very similar to how the 1080ti performs at 1440p.
 

Logan M

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At 4K with your overclock you will encounter some issues where it will hold back your performance a bit in the 1% lows. It’s not severe but you are starting to see more of it in newer games. These differences are generally only a few FPS and whether that’s a big enough problem to warrant a new system you’ll have to judge. I’ve been reading up on this quite a bit because I feared my i5 8400 was going to start experiencing the same.
 

Ricky T

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Don't listen to the FUD in this thread.

Do the upgrade for the 3080, then re-evaluate. Even then your best bet for max gaming perf will be to wait until after Zen 3 is launched.

A 4790K v a 9900K could not be a 40fps to 100fps jump. I don't doubt someone experienced that, but I would guess that had far more to do with the old system, than the CPU exclusively. I had a 5820K (haswell) at 4.3ghz for a very long time and got well over 100fps in most modern games @ 1440p with my 1080ti. The 3080 is going to perform at 4k, very similar to how the 1080ti performs at 1440p.
Well yeah don't let my direct experience using an oced 4770k and then going a 9900k mean anything at all. Of course no point in even arguing around here because I'll be the one to get a ban as usual so everyone just do whatever you want and I'll just shut up. :rolleyes:
 

Iratus

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Frames you might miss from a sub par component are the metaphorical falling tree in the forest.

Performance is either good enough, or not. You’re the only judge of that. If they’re not, work out the next thing to upgrade. It’s natural that we worry about things left on the table but comparing to others is a hobby few can afford. Acceptable or not, that’s the bar. Just go one step a time, if you’re not where you want to be, look at what is mostly likely to give you the best return.

With an older machine you’ll often get more from a clean install of windows without the accumulated cruft, than intels latest version of the same shit.
 
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If the game is heavily multi-threaded then yes it will cause a bottleneck, even at 4K resolution. That said, the 6700K is still a capable CPU and will get good performance out of the 3000 series.
 

Rev. Night

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I have an OC 6700K (4.5) and its perfectly fine for my 5700xt for 1440p@100. Because I dont like tons of noise, and due to the diminishing returns, I actually keep AMD Chill on for 90-120fps. So being able to push the full 144 is kinda irrelevant to me.

Look at these TechPowerUp CPU summary charts. With the GPU of a 2080ti:

At 1080p, there is a 45% change from best to worse
At 1440p, there is a 29% change from best to worse
At 4K, there is an 8% change from best to worse

So no, moving from your OC 6700K to a brand new Ryzen won't net you huge amounts of increases, especially when you take into account the total system cost (cpu, mobo, ram)
 

Auer

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I fully intend to keep on gaming at 4K60FPS with a R7 2700 and its miserly 4.1GHz top single core juice.
 

III_Slyflyer_III

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FWIW; I still game at 4K on a 2080Ti on a 5960x (granted, heavily OC'ed and everything else has been tweaked as far as I can go) and I don't feel limited in the least. In every game I play, I am clearly limited by the GPU at 4K. I will be getting a 3090 and plan to put it in this system and observe before I make any calls on upgrading. If my games are well into the 100's on the FPS at 4K, I'll be fine. I don't need to break record setting benchmarks over here... lol.

That being said, technically, a 6700k (or any older CPU really without sufficient cores or overclock) will be the "limiting" factor. Hell, technically PCIe 4.0 will be a limiting factor if you are on PCIe 3.0 and you look at pure specifications. The questions then becomes; is the extremely limited drop in FPS at 4K worth building an entirely new system and going through all of the overclocking, tweaking and setup? That will be up to you. The 6700k with a good overclock will likely suffer more from lack of cores than from IPC in many modern games, but at 4K, you are not going to be pushing it as hard as you would at 1080p or 1440p. But, it also depends on the game. If the game is heavily CPU dependent (like many MP games), you will get worse "lows" on the FPS side and may notice some stuttering.

So many aspects of a system can effect performance, and it is possible you still have performance on the table with a better overclock and by tweaking your memory speed & timings. Also, whats the worst that happens? You buy a new GPU and discover you need an upgrade? At least then, you will know for sure you are not wasting money...
 

Whach

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Nope. Should be fine at higher resolutions. I'll be jumping on a 3080 now and zen3 later when its viable. Don't worry about it too much.
 
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After reading everyone’s feedback, I thinking I’m going to stick with my system for now and just replace the graphics card. I’m going to try to overclock it a bit more...maybe to 4.8 and see how it runs on my 4K tv. I will re-evaluate, see what amd has to offer and upgrade if need be.
 

readeh

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I don't play at 4K, but at 1440p and my 7700K was severely bottlenecking my 2080ti. Can't even imagine it with a 3080 or 3090. I'm guessing you'd have at least 15-18% lower fps with a 6700K if you pair it with a 3090 and 10-12% with a 3080, but it's not only the fps as the 4 cores just aren't doing it anymore in a lot of newer titles, and even though I can get a steady 165 fps without drops I'm still experiencing "microlag" and I'm guessing it's because of the lower cache of the CPU at high utilisation.

Edit: I mostly play competitive shooters and most people probably wouldn't notice it.
I would still sell the 6700K and pair it with a zen3 $200-250 CPU when they arrive for a much more balanced build.
 
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LazyGamer

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You guys keep talking about average frame rates, and that misses the entire problem: 1% lows.

This is where having too few cores is going to be an issue, and it's going to be an issue regardless of resolution. 4k, 1080p, 8k, 720p... we're talking about the parts of each frame that are CPU dependent.

This is a similar problem to Crossfire or SLI. Average frame rates can be very high, but still be filled with micro stutters or just plain stuttering.

Since Dopefabulous has decided to upgrade their graphics first, they'll get to see first hand whether it's a problem, of course. But in general, four physical cores are simply not enough for high-end gaming today. Six are pushing it, and ideally, you'd want eight at a minimum if you're planning a CPU upgrade today.
 

LazyGamer

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unplayable territory
That's a matter of opinion, and also something that's not easy to test. And with only four cores, the deviation between a typical gamer's software load and a reviewer's test bench is going to make a difference too.

Main point I think is that it's something that the OP should be looking into for their personal usage.
 

MangoSeed

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That's a matter of opinion, and also something that's not easy to test. And with only four cores, the deviation between a typical gamer's software load and a reviewer's test bench is going to make a difference too.

Main point I think is that it's something that the OP should be looking into for their personal usage.

Yeah best bet is to keep chugging along until you actually encounter a game that the cpu can’t handle.
 

madpistol

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I keep hearing that RT is better on 6-8 core CPUs. This mainly has to do with extra rendering cycles associated with RT. That being said, a 6700k should still be a decent gaming CPU.
 

crazycrave

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You should be able to flip the platform for around $294 with the MSI B550 Bazooka / 16Gb of DDR 4 3600Mhz memory and a Ryzen 3 3100 .. Do that today and buy the 3080 as you wait for Zen 3 .. that way you really get what you want and resell the 3100 as it's always going be worth something to the next guy doing the same thing .

It's has some punch https://www.3dmark.com/fs/23322361
 

Whach

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This review tested with a 7700K and compared it with a newer 10900k. Seems very relevant to this thread. Anyway, the conclusion was that at higher resolutions (1440p and greater), they were pretty much neck & neck. Some titles use more cores, and it will become more common, but currently, a 6700k is not a bottleneck - especially if you OC it. Although, get a higher core count CPU if you can as it will be beneficial for newer titles. I intend to do so, but for now, its not a significant handicap.

 

Mylex

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This review tested with a 7700K and compared it with a newer 10900k. Seems very relevant to this thread. Anyway, the conclusion was that at higher resolutions (1440p and greater), they were pretty much neck & neck. Some titles use more cores, and it will become more common, but currently, a 6700k is not a bottleneck - especially if you OC it. Although, get a higher core count CPU if you can as it will be beneficial for newer titles. I intend to do so, but for now, its not a significant handicap.

This video wasn't relevant to my situation but I think this is one of better reviews for people interested in doing a partial upgrade of an older system. I normally think these guys are just entertaining but hats off to them for thinking of providing an under served view point.
 

Domingo

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I'm glad videos like this one are being made. It's easy to get CPU fever or to assume that your older CPU/Mobo setup must be holding you back. Yet it rarely is for gaming. It's good to know that's still the case.
 

Pastuch

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Warzone FPS literally doubled for me when I went from a 2500k @ 4.4ghz to a Ryzen 3600x. That was with a 1080ti at 1440p and 1080p. Admittedly, that 6700k is a lot faster than a 2500k OC. I agree with the post above, the video is a good watch for those with older Intel CPUs.
 

lopoetve

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Warzone FPS literally doubled for me when I went from a 2500k @ 4.4ghz to a Ryzen 3600x. That was with a 1080ti at 1440p and 1080p. Admittedly, that 6700k is a lot faster than a 2500k OC. I agree with the post above, the video is a good watch for those with older Intel CPUs.
Bigger jump there now; skylake got more powerful especially with newer stuff.
 
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