PC of the month (August 2018) – ITC.ua

Three configurations, three price categories, three best options to spend money on buying a PC. We offer the initial platforms, focusing on which, you can collect well-balanced gaming systems, complementing them in accordance with their requirements, capabilities and preferences.

For convenience, the items presented in the table are active links to specific components, categories or pages with the search results for devices with specified criteria that are located in the catalog hotline.ua .

Basic gaming PC

The choice of processor for the basic gaming platform on Intel is reduced to two models – [1 9459005] Pentium Gold G5400 (2 cores, 3.7 GHz, 4 MB L3), with the most limited budget and Core i3-8100 (4 cores, 3.6 GHz, 6 MB L3) , for all other cases. The difference in price here is substantial ($ 65 vs. $ 115), but it is absolutely justified when assembling a gaming PC. Four full core – a reasonable minimum for many heavy projects. A gilded Pentium with two cores and Hyper-Threading can still handle many games, but now there are enough exceptions, and then they will meet even more often.

For the AMD platform, the choice still has to be made between Ryzen 3 1200 and Ryzen 3 2200G . The difference in price between these chips was reduced to $ 10-15, so personal preferences and beliefs are more likely to play here. The 4-core model of the Ryzen family of the first generation has 8 MB of L3 cache memory, 16 lines of PCI Express 3.0 and solder under the cover, and the new APU boasts very good in its class integrated Vega graphics and increased clock speeds. A month or two ago, the purchase of Ryzen 3 1200 cost $ 20-30 less, that's why this model was our favorite in this class, but when leveling the price gap, this choice is already becoming unobvious.

Judging by the popularity of Ryzen 3 2200G in the corresponding section on hotline.ua, many users prefer a hybrid processor with a built-in video core. Of course, this is just an excellent option for cases where you can do without a video card. But the gaming system is still difficult to imagine without a discrete adapter. Yes, on the "build-in" Vega 8 you can play. In special conditions (overclocking GPU, high-speed memory in two-channel mode) it can compete even with GeForce GT 1030, but it's one thing to be able to run games with minimal settings and quite another to enjoy the process. In the latter case, a discrete video card can not be dispensed with yet.

The network has been discussing the prospects of the appearance of basic chips of the Pinnacle Ridge family for some time, which would be of interest for the initial game systems. It would seem that it's time to see the 4-core processors Ryzen 3 2300X (3.5 / 4.0 GHz, 8 MB L3), but there are still no specifics on this model. At least, there is no information on the timing of its appearance on sale.

Slowly we got close to the most difficult issue when assembling the basic gaming system – choosing a graphics adapter. Minimal enough can still be considered GeForce GTX 1050 2 GB . The most affordable versions of this family are offered from $ 155. On sale already GeForce GTX 1050 c 3 GB memory, which should also pay attention. We have already become acquainted with one of these models . The decision as a whole is ambiguous. Developers tried to squeeze a novelty between the classic GeForce GTX 1050 2 GB and the more expensive GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4 GB . In practice, it soon turned out, but the way to achieve the goal is very extraordinary. NVIDIA opened all the computational blocks available for the GP107, increased clock speeds, but reduced the bus width from 128 to 96 bits and reduced the number of rasterizers. In practice, the benefit of 3 GB is still greater than the loss from reduced memory bandwidth. Therefore, if you are lucky and GDDR5 chips will be able to podrazognat, it is quite possible to get the performance of a more expensive GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4 GB. The choice of GeForce GTX 1050 3 GB models is still limited, the most affordable adapters are offered from $ 175, while the cheapest versions of the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4 GB are from $ 205. Of course, the ideal option for a basic gaming system would be another video card with 3 GB of memory. It's about GeForce GTX 1060 3 GB which would add about 50% to the performance of the GTX 1050 Ti. The purchase of such a video card now needs a minimum of $ 250.

A very limited budget forces us to consider various options. An amateur who is crammed with money will certainly pay attention to the fact that the secondary market of components is now littered with offers of video cards of different levels. The reasons for this abundance are not difficult to guess. These are the consequences of the miner's fever. Classics of the genre. Sellers "shovels" received the maximum profit, and trustful prospectors, seizing on the prospect of easy and quick earnings, are now trying to return at least part of the money spent on the basic equipment of their farms. For example, previously swept from the shelves of GeForce GTX 1060 3 GB for $ 400-450, now you can find just $ 160-200. Someone honestly warns about the miner's run of the video card and the absence of any guarantee, but someone comes up with stories of the kind: "It's not a bit, it's not painted, megachems are not spoiled. It was used exclusively for games. There are 6 pcs. "

In any case, all purchases in the secondary market you do solely at your own peril and risk. There are a lot of options when something went wrong, because, of course, we only inform about such an opportunity, offering to independently weigh the pros and cons. In the recommended configurations, we focus only on new devices with an official manufacturer's warranty.

Starting from the July "PC of the Month", even the basic gaming PCs we recommend to equip with solid-state drives. A 120 GB SSH costing $ 30-35 will greatly enhance the overall comfort of using the system. To store games here, alas, there is still a need for mechanics with hard magnetic disks, but for OS and application applications of this size will be enough.

According to recent reports, WD will reorient one of its factories in Malaysia from the release of hard disks to production of solid state drives. Demand for HDD is steadily declining, therefore it is not surprising that one of the leaders of this industry is trying to redistribute its production capacities, making a bet on more promising directions. For sure, the very expensive purchase of SanDisk in 2015 will ultimately prove to be a strategically right decision for Western Digital.

The next round of development of solid-state drives will be the emergence of devices based on flash memory chips QLC c 4-bit cells. Apparently the first mass products on QLC for the consumer market will be Intel SSD 660p in M.2 format. The new line of the manufacturer includes devices in volume 512 GB, 1 TB and 2 TB, based on 64-layer chips 3D QLC and the new controller. The manufacturer promises about 150,000 IOPS while working with 4K blocks, linear transfers up to 1800/1100 MB / s. It is also curious to see the recommended price tags and the guaranteed resource of data recording for models on QLC.

Optimal gaming PC

Processor Intel Core i5-8400 (2.8 / 4.0 GHz, 6 × 256 KB L2, 9 MB of L3) $ 205
The motherboard
Intel B360 (LGA1151) $ 100
AMD B350 / B450 (AM4) $ 90
Memory 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4-2666 / 3000 $ 180 [19659028] Video card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6 GB, GDDR5 $ 340
Hard drive HDD 2 TB, 7200 rpm $ 70
SSD 480/512 GB, SATA $ 110
Case and BP Middle Tower ATX, 550 W $ 110
Amount for PC on the Intel platform $ 1110
Amount for the PC on AMD platform $ 1105

Checking the established configurations of optimal gaming configurations can highlight the increase in the price of the popular 6-core processor Core i5-8400 . Instead of the previous $ 185 for this model is already asking $ 200 +. And if you still take into account the change in the exchange rate, the increase becomes an unpleasant surprise. However, there are no alternatives on the horizon, unless you want to experiment with overclocking, then it will take Core i5-8600K . Apparently, even in the upcoming chip family Intel 9000 the Core i5 line will not get major improvements. It will also be a 6-core CPU with Hyper-Threading disabled. Therefore, if you initially focus on solutions of this class and price category, there is not much reason to wait for the next generation of Intel chips. On the other hand, in the leaked slides with plans for announcements of the 9000th line, not only the older chips with the "K" index appear in the first rows, but also the basic 6-core model Core i5-9400 . Of course, it would be interesting to find out more about this processor as well.

And there are no secrets left by the CPU, so Ryzen 5 2600 which we recommend for our optimal platform based on AMD. There are already enough offers on the market, and the actual price difference with the previous Ryzen 5 1600 is about $ 20 – the fee for this class is acceptable for the opportunity to get a more technological processor. Still, 12 nm, higher clock speeds and acceleration algorithms, a minimally increased frequency margin justifies the additional costs.

In a pair with the Ryzen 5 2600, it's quite possible to look at the motherboard on the most recent AMD B450 . The chipset does not differ much from its predecessor – AMD B350. Minimally improved economy in idle mode, support for all auto-acceleration options and AMD StoreMI hybrid drive technology. Of the most pleasant features of the motherboards on the new chipset, we would like to highlight the guaranteed initial compatibility with the Ryzen 2000 processors even without flashing BIOS. It seems like a trifle, and someone can save a lot of time with the initial setup of the system.

We have already tested one of the models on the AMD B450. Impressions are rather good, because there were no special expectations. Works, knows how to disperse. Well, in general, a pleasant platform for middle-class systems.

AMD B450 boards are slowly appearing on sale. Starting spread of prices is great – $ 90-200, but here much depends on the format and equipment of a particular device. There is something to choose from. And if you can not look at anything from novelties, or do not want to overpay at the start of sales, almost four dozen models on the AMD B350 allow you to choose the right option. In this class, it is advisable not to pursue the cheapness and be prepared for the fact that it may be necessary to update the firmware of the motherboard before starting the system.

The lower graphic strip for the optimal gaming configuration is GeForce GTX 1060 6 GB . The cost of such models, after a noticeable decline in the previous 2-3 months, remains virtually unchanged, drifting at $ 350. The choice of models is very wide, there are no problems with this. True, in this category I still want to see a more productive solution that would be able to provide stable 60 frames per second in the heaviest projects with maximum quality settings and Full HD resolution. Potentially, GeForce GTX 1070 would look good here but $ 450-500 on the eve of the change of graphic generations look unnecessary waste. We did not feel the promise of the July drop in prices for video cards. A wide range of used devices is definitely pushing the market, but local retail players are steadily suffering hardships and deprivations, not succumbing to provocations. Probably need a formal signal from NVIDIA, but it will be given only with the start of sales of new video cards. By the way, the decisions of the middle class will have to wait. Even according to optimistic forecasts, the conditional replacement of the GeForce GTX 1060 will arrive not earlier than the end of October.

The cost of video cards with AMD chips continues to decline. Radeon RX 580 4 GB can already be purchased for $ 300, and Radeon RX 570 with the same amount of memory you can buy for only $ 275. Choosing a specific model, pay attention to the fact that the cheapest versions of the Mining Edition are offered only with a 3-month warranty, and in especially severe cases you can not even count the video outputs for connecting the monitor.

Progressive gaming PC

Processor Intel Core i7-8700K (3.7 / 4.7 GHz, 6 × 256 KB L2, 12 MB L3) $ 375
AMD Ryzen 7 2700 (3.2 / 4.1 GHz, 8 × 512 KB L2, 16 MB L3) $ 300
Intel Z370 (LGA1151) $ 170
AMD X370 / X470 (Socket AM4) $ 140 [19659028] Memory 16 GB (2 × 8 GB) DDR4-3200 $ 200
Video card [NVIDIAGeForceGTX10808GBGDDR5 $ 620
59035] Hard drive SSD 960 GB / 1 TB, SATA $ 260
HDD 3 TB, 5400-7200 rpm $ 85
Case and power supply unit Middle Tower ATX, 650 W $ 180
Amount for the PC on the Intel platform $ 1890
Amount for the PC based on AMD $ 1785

Progressive system on the Intel platform we equip Core i7-8700K . Great for a gaming PC. There are already commemorative chips Core i7-8086K but the slightly increased clock speeds and the minimally improved overclocking potential are not very convincing arguments to pay for the processor $ 500 instead of $ 375. If you are ready to spend enough money to buy a CPU, it's better to wait for Intel 9000 processors to arrive. The exact dates for the appearance of new products are not yet reported. All sorts of assumptions were already so much that, it seems, only the lazy did not draw "official Intel slides" with the timing of the release of the chips Coffee Lake Refresh. According to some of them, the processors had to be shown on August 1, but the last summer month had already begun, and we did not see the processors.

The version of the announcement of the updated platform in October looks realistic. By this time, motherboards on the top chipset Intel Z390 will also be ready. Fortunately, this PCH will be desirable, but not an obligatory attribute for the Intel 9000. Support for the processors of this family will already certainly receive boards based on the Intel Z370. We hope that the devices on the lower chipsets of the Intel 3xx series will also be able to receive new CPUs on board. At least, the network already had a photo of the motherboard on the Intel H310 with a sticker that reports on the support of 8-core processors.

If there is still no certainty about the timing of the release of the new Intel processors, then with the chipset of the first wave, less understandable. Leading the new line Core i9-9900K – 8-core processor that supports Hyper-Threading technology and therefore has the ability to process up to 16 data streams simultaneously. The estimated frequency formula is 3.6 / 5.0 GHz, the L3 cache memory capacity is 16 MB. In this case, the top-end CPU should fit within the TDP 95 W. Of course, there are no exact recommended prices yet, but there are expectations that it will be about $ 450.

Another 8-core processor in the new series will be Core i7-9700K (3,6 / 4, 9 GHz). In order not to compete with the flagship, this model will disable the Hyper-Threading technology. The solution is somewhat unexpected, because the Core i7 processors are difficult to imagine without HT support. The more curious it will be to evaluate the capabilities of the new CPUs and also to determine the situation with the cores / streams in which the 8/8 configuration will be more profitable than the 6/12 that is relevant for the current senior chips of Coffee Lake.

Recall that for the 8-core Core i9 / i7 will use a new silicon crystal. The chip will be manufactured using the already improved 14-nanometer process technology. In general, we would not dramatize here. Numerical values ​​specified by manufacturers have been a certain marketing tool for a very long time without reflecting the physical parameters of the crystals. And in particular the density of the layout of the elements on the crystal. The 8/16 configuration with high operating frequencies and within 95 watts is generally more impressive than some ephemeral figures.

Intel would openly applaud its fans, using the solder for Coffee Lake Refresh. With the problems of heat dissipation for sure faced with the desire to at least minimally overclock the 6-core chips of Intel. The thermal paste under the processor cover becomes an obstacle for efficient heat removal, making effective cooling systems practically useless. We really hope that, at least for top-end chips, Intel will again start using fusible indium solder.

Core i5 chips are not particularly interesting for progressive configurations. Here it can only be noted that the expected Core i5-9600K and other family models will use the same core / thread configuration as the current Coffee Lake – 6/6. Of the improvements here, one can only count on increasing clock speeds.

Intel feels a threat from the second generation of processors AMD Ryzen Threadripper which will soon include a 32-core 64-chip chip. This move will not remain without the answer of the "blue". No, we are not talking about the dismissal of the head of the next unit. If you trust trusted slides, then Intel plans in November / December of this year to introduce new H-series chips for the A-series, which will include 28-core 56-stream models with a 6-channel memory controller. A similar CPU will require a new platform. Presumably, this refers to the "domesticated" LGA3647 (Socket P). Принимаем эту информацию к сведению, пусть и не без скепсиса в отношении реального воплощения и успеха такого решения.

А вот в чем можно не сомневаться, так это в желании производителя обновить платформу LGA2066-v3. На ноябрь здесь запланирован выход процессоров Basin Falls Refresh (Skylake-X). Опять же, если верить утечкам, то чипсет Intel X299 останется в строю. В этом случае повышенными частотами новых чипов точно никого не удивишь, а вот придать новый импульс платформе определенно помогло бы использование припоя. Термопаста для чипов с TDP под 165 Вт – вершина легкомыслия, беспечности и результат отсутствия конкуренции. Надеемся появление Ryzen Threadripper позволит Intel встряхнуться и показать процессоры в таком виде, в котором их не стыдно будет предлагать энтузиастам.

На процессорной позиции прогрессивных систем с AMD прочно обосновались 8-ядерные Ryzen 7 2700 (3,2/4,1 ГГц). Если нужна максимальная производительность и нет желания заморачиваться с разгоном, можно смотреть в сторону топовой модели Ryzen 7 2700X (3,7/4,3 ГГц) из которой производитель уже выжал практически все в заводских условиях. Дополнительный бонус владельцам флагмана — неплохой штатный кулер Wraith Prism с эффектной RGB-подсветкой. Если хочется немного сэкономить, Ryzen 7 2700 будет не худшим вариантом. Оба процессора недавно побывали у нас на тесте. Новый 12-нанометровый техпроцесс от GlobalFoundries не стал каким-то откровением в плане частотного потенциала, но на дополнительные 100–200 МГц вполне можно рассчитывать.

В целом производительность топовых Pinnacle Ridge вполне прогнозируема. CPU показывают отличные результаты во многих многопоточных задачах, но все так же уступают Core i7-8700K в играх. В режиме Full HD со средними настройками качества график отличие может составлять до 20%, однако уловить разницу при 180 и 150 кадрах/с без замеров не так просто. К тому же разрыв сокращается при повышении качества картинки и увеличении разрешения. В многопоточных проектах отставание Ryzen 7 изначально меньше, а загрузка процессора ниже. В этом случае остается больше ресурсов для сложных параллельных задач, например, стриминга игрового видео.

Если нужен максимально доступный 8-ядерник Ryzen, на рынке еще можно найти остатки Ryzen 7 1700 (3,0/3,7 ГГц), предлагаемые от $230. Если относительно невысокие базовые частоты вас не пугают, а разгон вы планировали изначально, то это может быть действенный вариант экономии. Хотя Pinnacle Ridge c архитектурой Zen+ и получили некоторые улучшения в работе кеш-памяти, на равных частотах в большинстве случаев производительность новых CPU немногим отличается от таковой для Ryzen первой волны.

Говорить о 7-нанометровых чипах AMD с архитектурой Zen 2 еще очень рано. Пока известно лишь, что эти процессоры выйдут до конца 2019 года, причем появятся они позже серверных чипов EPYC c кодовым именем Rome, выполненных по новым технологическим нормам.
Если говорить о ближайших перспективах, то буквально сегодня уже посыпались анонсы от производителей материнских плат, которые предлагают новые модели плат на базе AMD X399 для второго поколения AMD Ryzen Threadripper. Последние уже на подходе. Начало продаж предварительно намечено на 13 августа.

При выборе видеокарты для прогрессивной игровой системы, естественными претендентами представляются GeForce GTX 1080 (от $600) и GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (от $800). Однако сейчас именно та ситуация, когда не стоит торопиться.

Уже 20-го августа в Кельне, накануне открытия выставки Gamescom 2018, компания NVIDIA проведет мероприятие GeForce Gaming Celebration. Есть предположение, что ивент окажется не только платформой для обсуждения достижений игровой индустрии, но также станет площадкой для анонса долгожданной дискретной графики нового поколения.

Несмотря на близость анонса, разработчику все еще удается сохранять интригу в отношении будущих устройств. До сих пор есть лишь предположения не только о технических характеристиках, но даже названиях используемой архитектуры и моделей видеокарт. Когда многие уже сошлись во мнении, что мы увидим решения серии GeForce GTX 11xx на GPU с архитектурой Turing, появляется очередные утечки от производителей видеокарт, согласно которым нас ждут GeForce GTX 20×0 на чипах с архитектурой Ampere. В конечном счете для потенциальных владельцев обозначение отходит на второй план, первичны реальные возможности видеокарт. Совсем недавно в сети появились фотографии печатной платы одной из будущих видеокарт NVIDIA. Десятифазная VRM, разъемы 6+8 для дополнительного питания, восемь посадочных мест для микросхем памяти говорят о 256-битовой шине и объеме 8/16 ГБ. Также можно отметить отсутствие площадки для выхода DVI и габаритная гребенка причудливой формы (NVLink?) для сопряжение нескольких видеокарт. В любом случае, ждать уже осталось совсем немного. Наберемся терпения, вскоре мы сможем узнать все подробности.

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