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raymac46

A Question of Balance

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raymac46

I put together my first desktop build back at the end of 2013 and I chose an AMD A8-5600k APU for my processor. It simplified things a lot and I didn't have to buy a GPU at the time. By late 2015, AMD was dropping support for the APU graphics (and it was pretty wimpy, let's face it.) So I got an R7 360 discrete card to replace the internal graphics. This made quite a difference in video and web graphics, and although I had some difficulties migrating to the AMD FOSS driver everything is working well now.

Lately there have been some good sales around on RX 570 cards and I have been debating whether to upgrade again. I don't game on the system and I don't push a lot of pixels either. I have only one 24 inch 1080p monitor attached.

The other problem is that my AMD APU is even older and I am sure it would be bottlenecked by the newer GPU I doubt that I'd see much of a performance increase. If I get a newer GPU now and then wait a couple of years before I upgrade the whole shebang then I'll have an old GPU all over again.

So it's a question of balance I guess. If I ran multiple hi res monitors or planned to do some Linux gaming it'd be different. Then I'd get a new Ryzen system and add in a decent GPU. But the old one is still plenty good enough to surf the Internet and watch HD videos. Think I'll wait and see.

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securitybreach

The other problem is that my AMD APU is even older and I am sure it would be bottlenecked by the newer GPU I doubt that I'd see much of a performance increase.

 

Nah, you can just disable the onboard video and only use the GPU. What you are describing is called Hybrid Graphics and is mostly only used in Mobile workstations. We turn off Hybrid Graphics on the mobile workstations at work so to get better performance.

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raymac46
Posted (edited)

No this is a desktop. I have already disabled the APU graphics and I'm only using the GPU. The A8 processor is pretty obsolete these days. If I had an Intel Ivy Bridge or better a GPU upgrade would probably be good - but not here.

Edited by raymac46

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securitybreach

I was aware that it is a desktop, I just mentioned it as it sounded like you didn't know that you could disable the onboard video.

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raymac46

https://pc-builds.com/calculator/

 

This bottleneck calculator says my current R7 360 would not bottleneck the A8 processor but that the RX 570 would bottleneck 30% of the time. Probably not a big deal since I am not gaming to the max, but not much of an incentive to upgrade given that I don't really have any issues at present.

It was possible to run dual graphics with a GPU and the APU but you had to choose such an obsolete GPU for compatibility that it was better to just disable the onboard graphics and put in a more powerful discrete card.

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raymac46

Checked the BIOS and I do have the IGP disabled.

 

Graphics:
  Device-1: AMD Tobago PRO [Radeon R7 360 / R9 360 OEM] 
  vendor: PC Partner Limited driver: radeon v: kernel bus ID: 01:00.0 
  Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.19.6 driver: ati,radeon 
  unloaded: fbdev,modesetting,vesa resolution: 1920x1080~60Hz 
  OpenGL: renderer: AMD BONAIRE (DRM 2.50.0 4.15.0-91-generic LLVM 9.0.0) 
  v: 4.5 Mesa 19.2.8 direct render: Yes 

 

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securitybreach

Cool. :thumbsup:

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raymac46

Since my other desktop now is in need of a new power supply I decided to direct my IT budget in that direction. The most logical thing to do with my Linux machine is to upgrade with a new motherboard and APU. Then I can move on to a newer dedicated graphics card as needed. But right now my older setup is doing the job so I'll wait until it doesn't.

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securitybreach

Cool :thumbsup:

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