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Requesting Upgrade help on Rampage 3 Extreme

step1984
Level 7
I am trying to solve some speed and lag issues occasionally along with making startup time a lot faster(currently about 5-8 minutes before the PC quiets down from startup).

I built this machine back in 2010 and it's still going pretty strong, but needs a little help to get back up to speed. I'm not looking for a crazy amount of upgrades, but key components that will have a noticeable effect on the performance.

~Issues:
Mouse lags A LOT occasionally. Often, it is when the hard drive is busy doing things in the background. The performance graphs on the Task Manager show the CPU running at 100%, but I can't see any programs really taking up the amount of resources to account for the lag. Sometimes, restarting will help and sometimes it will go right back to working in the background and lagging. The lag can last up to 30 minutes before I can use it normally.

~Questions:
What key components should I swap out? Is this issue a product of the slow hard drive listed below? Will a solid state drive for the operating system help that much?

I can add RAM, but I don't think this will really help that much. I don't typically run in to RAM issues(that I am aware of).

I don't really want to change out the motherboard yet, but when I do will I have to get a new Processor and other components?

Is this a graphics card issue at all?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,
Stephen


Current PC specs:
Windows 10 Pro 64bit

(FYI- my knowledge of building a PC was enough to get the below working for my needs.) I know enough to get by, but not a lot about specifics of specs.) I don't use this machine for gaming, I use it for AutoCAD Architecture, modeling Revit Architecture, and rendering in 3ds Max.

BIOS 1102 installed (ver 1502 available) I tried to install version 1502, but it kept asking for a boot device and I couldn't get it to work, so I went back to 1102.

RAIDMAX SMILODON ATX-612WB Black/Silver 1.0mm SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Foldout MB Computer Case

ASUS Rampage III Extreme LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

SAPPHIRE Toxic 100282-2GTXSR Radeon HD 5850 (Cypress Pro) 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX ...

XCLIO STABLEPOWER 1000W 1000W ATX CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply

Intel Core i7-950 Bloomfield 3.06GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor BX80601950

CORSAIR XMS 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX8GX3M2A1600C9

Western Digital WD Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
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13 REPLIES 13

Menthol
Level 14
step1984,
I am not sure about boot time (5 to 8 min. is very long) but an SSD will make your system quicker after it has booted, also a different memory kit specifically for your system, a tri-channel kit of 3 or 6 modules modules, tri-channel kits came in either 2 or 4 GB per module = 6 to 24 GB total, I would say a 12 GB 3x4GB kit would be needed for the apps you listed

step1984
Level 7
Is going to a tri-channel as easy as buying 1 stick of the same amount and type of RAM? Or do I need to get all new ram since the original is older?

On SSDs, what is the best practice in your opinion(or anyone else that reads this)? I have seen multiple ideas about what is best.

1. a smaller SSD just for Windows and all other programs on the standard HDD?
2. a larger SSD with Windows and programs on it. Keep the standard HDD for photos, documents, ....etc. (( I have seen comments saying that programs like AutoCAD and Photoshop read/write to the SSDs quite a lot, so that will shorten the life of the SSD. )) I don't know how much of that is really true compared to any other program.

Thanks,
Stephen

Menthol
Level 14
Your budget should be the determining factor, a matched kit of memory is always better but you may be able to add a stick, search ebay or another source for used memory kits
Same for SSD, if you can afford a larger SSD fine, if you can't a smaller SSD will work fine as long as you don't let it get past about 60 to 75% full

step1984,
I just looked through my memory box and found a Gskill Trident 12GB 6X2GB 2000mhz memory kit for this platform, message me with your address and I'll send it to you as long as your address is in the U.S. as I no longer need them

P.S. I used to live in Tulsa a long time ago, still have family in Owasso

Korth
Level 14
I agree that an SSD system drive is the most obvious upgrade. For about $60 you can get a fast SATA SSD with roughly 250GB capacity, plenty of space for Windows and some big games/apps. Bigger is better, of course - and many people here will advise TB capacities - but it's really not needed unless you have a large library of software which always needs to run at maximal performance.

Photos, documents, videos, music, etc can all add up to a lot of drive space and don't benefit much (if at all) from SATA3 drive performances. Your HDD(s) can be repurposed for bulk storage, alongside a boot/system SSD, without diminishing real performance.

I've found AMD legacy drivers run much better (faster, stabler, more configurable) than new Catalyst/etc drivers for old AMD Radeon HD cards. If you do a lot of fps-based gaming then you wouldn't regret a $200~$300 GPU upgrade.

Excessive boot times might be reduced by enabling "quick boot" settings and disabling unused hardware settings (for any PCIe slots, network, audio, USB, etc which you aren't using) in BIOS. But I think the real cause might be an elderly WinOS install or even malware.

I'd advise a fresh clean WinOS install. But be sure to extract and write down your Windows Product Key and any other keys/licenses you will need, copy *all* of your personal data to another drive (or external drive, or disc, or whatever), and backup/clone the entire Windows drive before changing any drive hardware around. I recommend Clonezilla and I recommend putting no faith in the backup/restore mechanisms built into Windows, lol.
"All opinions are not equal. Some are a very great deal more robust, sophisticated and well supported in logic and argument than others." - Douglas Adams

[/Korth]

step1984
Level 7
Thank you all for the info!

Korth
Level 14
(You should probably go for Menthol's offer - it's an upgrade in both capacity and performance, and triple-channel DDR3 kits have become somewhat scarce and costly, lol.)
"All opinions are not equal. Some are a very great deal more robust, sophisticated and well supported in logic and argument than others." - Douglas Adams

[/Korth]

step1984
Level 7
Yes, I think I will. Thanks for the advice.

I will probably go with a smaller SSD just for Windows 10 and keep the regular HDD for programs and everything else.

Thanks again,
Stephen

Hi, I'm back!

PC is running great, thank you Korth and Menthol. I did take Menthol's help with the hard drives and ram upgrades. Other than that, I believe the hardware is basically the same as originally specified.

Since my PC is 10 years old and software demands are getting higher, I'm trying to figure out what is the best option for me to upgrade. I'm looking at hte following options.

  • Motherboard
  • Processor
  • Graphics Card


1. At what point do I need to start looking at a new motherboard? I know this change will probably effect multiple hardware components.

2. If the motherboard is not recommended to change, would a new processor be bottlenecked by the 10 year old motherboard?

3. Would a new graphics card be bottlenecked with a 10 year old motherboard?

I'm looking for longevity here with this machine and trying not to build a complete new machine.....but I want to know all options and if building a complete new machine is better...I'll look at that option as well.

Thank you for the help in advance.

Stephen

ROG_2020
Level 7
step1984 wrote:
I am trying to solve some speed and lag issues occasionally along with making startup time a lot faster(currently about 5-8 minutes before the PC quiets down from startup).

I built this machine back in 2010 and it's still going pretty strong, but needs a little help to get back up to speed. I'm not looking for a crazy amount of upgrades, but key components that will have a noticeable effect on the performance.

~Issues:
Mouse lags A LOT occasionally. Often, it is when the hard drive is busy doing things in the background. The performance graphs on the Task Manager show the CPU running at 100%, but I can't see any programs really taking up the amount of resources to account for the lag. Sometimes, restarting will help and sometimes it will go right back to working in the background and lagging. The lag can last up to 30 minutes before I can use it normally.

~Questions:
What key components should I swap out? Is this issue a product of the slow hard drive listed below? Will a solid state drive for the operating system help that much?

I can add RAM, but I don't think this will really help that much. I don't typically run in to RAM issues(that I am aware of).

I don't really want to change out the motherboard yet, but when I do will I have to get a new Processor and other components?

Is this a graphics card issue at all?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,
Stephen


Current PC specs:
Windows 10 Pro 64bit

(FYI- my knowledge of building a PC was enough to get the below working for my needs.) I know enough to get by, but not a lot about specifics of specs.) I don't use this machine for gaming, I use it for AutoCAD Architecture, modeling Revit Architecture, and rendering in 3ds Max.

BIOS 1102 installed (ver 1502 available) I tried to install version 1502, but it kept asking for a boot device and I couldn't get it to work, so I went back to 1102.

RAIDMAX SMILODON ATX-612WB Black/Silver 1.0mm SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Foldout MB Computer Case

ASUS Rampage III Extreme LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

SAPPHIRE Toxic 100282-2GTXSR Radeon HD 5850 (Cypress Pro) 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX ...

XCLIO STABLEPOWER 1000W 1000W ATX CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply

Intel Core i7-950 Bloomfield 3.06GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor BX80601950

CORSAIR XMS 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX8GX3M2A1600C9

Western Digital WD Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

Hey Stephen! I would like to know how things turned out with this system. Do I have this correct that you are on WIn 10 Pro 64/bit?

Cool. Finally another guy that uses his PC for AutoCAD, Adobe, Office, Project, Visio, and some proprietary software for work built only for Win 7 Pro 64 bit. My friends come over and use it for gaming and run it pretty hard (OC, OV). Have to keep the A/C on to keep the room cool.

ASUS Rampage III Extreme, LGA 1366 Intel X58, ICH10R, i7980X OC about 4Ghz.

BIOS 1502 with most OC, OV, Timing, AUTO settings ON.

Memory: HyperX Black DDR3 1600mHz+ 24Gb

Corsair HX-1050 ATX PSU

MSI Lightning Geforce 680 Nvidia 2Gb Memory, 256 bit, 1.2Ghz clock, running 4 monitors and Vizio Flat screen TV

Qty (5) Internal 3.5 inch 5TB Toshiba High Performance HDs running on 2 separate PCIE slots with 4 SATA 6/Gbs each card.

Qty(2) 512GB Toshiba SSHD on the Mobo SATA 6Gb/s controller; 1 has Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit/ other has Win 7 Pro 64 bit. Win 10 SSHD disabled temporarily until I have time to set up proper dual boot. But it works.

Corsair H100 360mm Water Cooler with 2x 120mm high static pressure fans.

(6) more 120mm fans to equalize air/flow in/out to suck through filters in case and to exhaust.

140mm high flow rear case exhaust.

2x LG External Case mounted DL/DS Blu Ray writers.

Hopefully you're still out there and can talk tech talk.

Regards,

ROG_2020
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