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Midcon113

i5 6600K for FSX/P3D/Xplane?

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Starting to look at building my first custom computer, and virtually all the games I run are going to be fine with the following configuration, but I just want confirmation on FSX/P3D/Xplane.  I don't own P3D or Xplane yet, but I do have FSX+Acceleration and FSX Steam Edition.

 

So, the idea would be:

 

i5 6600K

ASUS Z170 mobo

16 Gigs DD4 RAM

GTX 970 video card

 

The two areas that seem like a potential issue to get the best performance from flight sims are obviously the processor and video card, but is it worth spending an extra $120 or so on an i7 6700K, and probably another $250 or more on a 1070 card?  Am I really going to get significantly more FPS out of that?  I'm going to use an AIO water cooler for the processor in order to be able to overclock it, but probably not on the video card.

 

Any thoughts folks?  Thanks in advance!

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Depends on your budget really.  I would think that would be fine for FSX, don't know about X-plane as I don't use it, but for P3D I would throw as much GFX card as it as you can.

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Thanks for the reply Charlatan, especially the insight into P3D - I wasn't aware that more graphics card made a difference for it.

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The setup you listed is exactly the same that i´m using with P3D V3 and i´m more tan happy with the performance. My I5-6600K is overclocked at 4,5 GHz with watercooling and runs very stable. FYI, i use only complex stuff like ORBX, PMDG, etc. Even though you will need to make some compromises, when you fly with complex aircraft and dense scenery, you have to balance your settings accordingly. I can easily get about 60 Fps with a PMDG aircraft in complex scenery.

Obviously, if your budget is high enough, you might consider getting the best you can.

At least i´m very happy with my setup and it gives me lots of power for complex stuff with moderate to high settings.

 

Regards, Lars

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Hi Lars - thanks for the input!  I'm okay compromising some settings - I don't need everything maxed out in order to be satisfied.  Good news!

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The two areas that seem like a potential issue to get the best performance from flight sims are obviously the processor and video card, but is it worth spending an extra $120 or so on an i7 6700K, and probably another $250 or more on a 1070 card?  Am I really going to get significantly more FPS out of that?  I'm going to use an AIO water cooler for the processor in order to be able to overclock it, but probably not on the video card.

 

Higher end cards will give you extra smoothness too. Especially with autogen. 

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  I'm going to use an AIO water cooler for the processor in order to be able to overclock it, 

 

 

You may be a fan of AIO water coolers, if so all power to you.

 

However, and I see this a lot lately, don't be fooled into thinking you MUST go for an AIO water cooler because you're overclocking.

 

Nothing could be further from the truth. The NH-D15 or 15S is perfectly capable of cooling an overclocked CPU, and very well actually, beating many AIO's. It is true that "some" of the very best AIO's beat the D15 to a degree, but what does that extra 100 MHz or so give you? Well actually, it's less than one frame per second at 30 frames per second, utterly insignificant.

 

So yes, if you like AIO coolers, aesthetically or for what ever reason, then go for it, but no, they aren't essential for overclocking at all. The NH-D15 and a number of other top tier air coolers do the job admirably. And the benefit of course is no moving parts to fail, no pump to become noisy and zero chance of leaks.

 

 

Something else I see a lot is... " overclocked at X GHz with watercooling".

 

It's worth remembering that "water cooling" can be a full blown,

highly efficient, super capable custom loop. Or it can be an AIO closed loop cooler of very uninspiring capabilities!

 

The moral of the story is that just because it's water, doesn't mean it's an awesome cooler. There's water, and then there's water!

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Hi Martin,

 

Excellent points!  One thing I'm trying to go for is as quiet system a system as possible under load.  For a flight simulator this obviously isn't an issue - with the engines going the background noise from the CPU fans is not going to be noticeable, but in other programs I run it can be.  So, acoustically, how do those fan-based heat sinks compare to water-cooled heat sinks?

 

Thanks!

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The NH-D15, especially the 15S high compatability variant, is famous for lack of noise. Quieter than most AIO coolers. In fact, my old D14, still cooling my sons Ivy Bridge PC, is so quiet that I let it run at full RPM.

 

Many that buy AIO coolers end up swapping the fans, often for Noctua fans, in order to reduce noise.

 

When I'm on my PC rather than phone, I'll sort out some reviews for you that compare AIO and the D15 for thermals and noise.

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Hi Martin,

 

your absolutely right about "cooling", i just mentioned the watercooling, because when i build my PC i had no choice and bought a Corsair H80i (not the best choice and makes a hell of a noise at full power, though very efficient).

Unfortunately, i live on a small island and if i want to get specific hardware, it´s sometimes a major "P.I.T.A".

Actually, i´m also considering to buy a nice Air Cooling System, when the time is right.

 

By no means i wanted "Midcon" to buy a Water Cooling, it was just a suggestion :smile:

As we all know, there are a million ways to build a PC for our specific needs.

 

Regards, Lars

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The setup you listed is exactly the same that i´m using with P3D V3 and i´m more tan happy with the performance. My I5-6600K is overclocked at 4,5 GHz with watercooling and runs very stable. FYI, i use only complex stuff like ORBX, PMDG, etc. Even though you will need to make some compromises, when you fly with complex aircraft and dense scenery, you have to balance your settings accordingly. I can easily get about 60 Fps with a PMDG aircraft in complex scenery.

Obviously, if your budget is high enough, you might consider getting the best you can.

At least i´m very happy with my setup and it gives me lots of power for complex stuff with moderate to high settings.

 

Regards, Lars

 

What's the best you can right now- Titan? GTX 1080 version 2 (out in a few days)? 6700k?

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What's the best you can right now- Titan? GTX 1080 version 2 (out in a few days)? 6700k?

 

Okay this is a good question: what will a 6700K processor net me in terms of performance over a 6600K?  Are we talking more than 5%?  10%?  An extra frame or two per second is not worth the extra money to spend on the 6700K IMO.  However, this is where I go crazy with the specs - will a 6700K perform better in terms of accessing the drive to load, say, autogen or other files?  That's what I'm trying to get a handle on - what are the actual improvements one can expect?

 

Same goes for a 1080 over a 970 - are we talking a few FPS, or a significant increase?

 

 

 


By no means i wanted "Midcon" to buy a Water Cooling, it was just a suggestion :smile:

As we all know, there are a million ways to build a PC for our specific needs.

 

I was sold on water cooling before I made the post, but now I'm starting to think about it. :)  On this end, I'm really looking for the tradeoff between noise and effectiveness.  If both are effectively silent, then air cooling would be the way to go - I just wish aesthetically they'd make a black version of that massive cooler.  The beige/brown color scheme of the Noctuna fans doesn't match anything in my office.  If they wouldn't be visible that'd be one thing, but the case I'm going with has a clear side. :)

 

Thanks for the input folks - I really appreciate everyone's thoughts!

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Okay this is a good question: what will a 6700K processor net me in terms of performance over a 6600K?  Are we talking more than 5%?  10%?  An extra frame or two per second is not worth the extra money to spend on the 6700K IMO.  However, this is where I go crazy with the specs - will a 6700K perform better in terms of accessing the drive to load, say, autogen or other files?  That's what I'm trying to get a handle on - what are the actual improvements one can expect?

 

Same goes for a 1080 over a 970 - are we talking a few FPS, or a significant increase?

 

 

 

 

I was sold on water cooling before I made the post, but now I'm starting to think about it. :)  On this end, I'm really looking for the tradeoff between noise and effectiveness.  If both are effectively silent, then air cooling would be the way to go - I just wish aesthetically they'd make a black version of that massive cooler.  The beige/brown color scheme of the Noctuna fans doesn't match anything in my office.  If they wouldn't be visible that'd be one thing, but the case I'm going with has a clear side. :)

 

Thanks for the input folks - I really appreciate everyone's thoughts!

 

To be honest, i don´t really care about a few frames more or less, fluidity is the key, you can partly achieve this with fairly modern hardware, but also a properly configured OS and proper system maintenance. But there are a lot of threads available here, to help you out. Obviously all depends on how many bucks you are willing to spend.

 

So, for now, i´ll stick with what i have. When my PC dies, i´ll have the same dilemma as you  :wink:

Hopefully you´ll get it sorted out.

 

Lars

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Hi Martin,

 

your absolutely right about "cooling", i just mentioned the watercooling, because when i build my PC i had no choice and bought a Corsair H80i (not the best choice and makes a hell of a noise at full power, though very efficient).

Unfortunately, i live on a small island and if i want to get specific hardware, it´s sometimes a major "P.I.T.A".

Actually, i´m also considering to buy a nice Air Cooling System, when the time is right.

 

By no means i wanted "Midcon" to buy a Water Cooling, it was just a suggestion :smile:

As we all know, there are a million ways to build a PC for our specific needs.

 

Regards, Lars

 

 

 

Yep, no problem lars, I didn't mean to single you out. Just clarifying.

 

 

 

i had no choice and bought a Corsair H80i (not the best choice and makes a hell of a noise at full power, though very efficient

 

 

 

I'm glad you mentioned that. It's another important aspect of cooling that's often neglected. Many AIO coolers that cool well, do so because they utilize high RPM noisy fans. The Kraken X60 is a prime example. The Kraken may cool  well, but if you put the same high RPM fans on a different cooler, the results would be telling.

 

Clearly the important factor is the efficiency of the heat sink/radiator itself, not the fans. Install the Kraken's high RPM fans on the D15 and the D15 would be much closer to it in terms of performance. The moral of the story is that to accurately compare coolers, you must keep the variables constant, and that means the same fans on both coolers.

 

In essence, some AIO cooler manufacturers cheat and whack noisy high RPM fans on a less than top notch radiator. Meanwhile, Noctua install lower RPM quiet fans on the D15 and still mange to cool an overclocked CPU admirably.

 

 

 

Okay this is a good question: what will a 6700K processor net me in terms of performance over a 6600K?  Are we talking more than 5%?  10%?  An extra frame or two per second is not worth the extra money to spend on the 6700K IMO.  However, this is where I go crazy with the specs - will a 6700K perform better in terms of accessing the drive to load, say, autogen or other files?  That's what I'm trying to get a handle on - what are the actual improvements one can expect?

 

Same goes for a 1080 over a 970 - are we talking a few FPS, or a significant increase?

 

 

 

 

I was sold on water cooling before I made the post, but now I'm starting to think about it. :)  On this end, I'm really looking for the tradeoff between noise and effectiveness.  If both are effectively silent, then air cooling would be the way to go - I just wish aesthetically they'd make a black version of that massive cooler.  The beige/brown color scheme of the Noctuna fans doesn't match anything in my office.  If they wouldn't be visible that'd be one thing, but the case I'm going with has a clear side. :)

 

Thanks for the input folks - I really appreciate everyone's thoughts!

 

 

To be honest, I love the Noctua colour scheme. In fact my new Lian Li X510 has a huge glass side panel and the enclosure will be replete with no less than FIVE Noctua NF-S12A fans, not the mention the big 150 mm Noctua fan on the D15S. But yes, the colour scheme isn't to everyone taste. 

 

 

 

Here's a nice review for you...

 

 

Since the Kraken X61 is a 280mm AIO, we expected it to overtake all other coolers with little effort. The Thermaltake Water 3.0 Extreme S comes second place with 66 Celsius. The NH-D15 shocked us by providing the same temp under load as the H100i GTX. Coming in at last place, the Cooler Master Nepton 240M with 73 Celsius.

 

 

This is where the NH-D15 truly shines, it outperformed all coolers in noise level under full load by a large margin. The DEEPCOOL Gamer Storm Captain 240 and Corsair H100i GTX were loud but acceptable. Thermaltake's and Cooler Master's coolers were just too loud. NZXT’s Kraken X61 has the noisiest fans out of all coolers. The noise was unbearable when the fans reached max speed.

 

 

http://www.relaxedtech.com/reviews/noctua/nh-d15-versus-closed-loop-liquid-coolers/2

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Martin - very interesting review - thanks for sharing!

 

So last step, looking at those numbers: at max load, the Noctua generates 4db less in noise than the H100i GTX (the AIO I am contemplating) while both maxing out at 68C.  I'm wondering if you took an H100i GTX and replaced it's fans with the Noctua fans - you should get the same temp results, but with the lower noise.  That may be the way to go for me.  Question is: is this possible?  It seems from watching various build videos that it is but again, this is my first time building my own custom rig, so I'm looking for any help I can get up front.  You guys have been great on this question btw - thanks very much!  It's almost buy time! :)

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 I'm wondering if you took an H100i GTX and replaced it's fans with the Noctua fans - you should get the same temp results, but with the lower noise.  

 

 

 

The NH-D15, and indeed the "S" variant, use Noctua NF-A15 fans. They are actually 150mm fans, with a 140mm mount. So no, I don't believe they can be installed on a H100i that accommodates 120mm fans.

 

You would be looking at something like the Noctua NF-F12 focused flow, high static pressure fans for a direct replacement on the H100i. not as powerful as the Corsair fans, but a good balance between performance and acoustics.

 

NF-F12: 1500 RPM. 56 CFM. 22.4 dB. 2.61 mm H20 Static Pressure.

 

H100i fans: 2700 RPM. 77 CFM. dB 37.68. 4 mm H20 Static Pressure.

 

 

The above, clearly demonstrates what I said earlier and in other threads. many AIO manufactures cheat by fitting high RPM noisy fans.

 

There is no free lunch. The Corsair fans are high RPM beasts. It's a balancing act in any system, between acoustics and performance. 

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EDIT:

 

I'm a fan of big tower coolers as you know. However, If you are set on AIO and you want the best balance between noise and cooling, then a big rad is the way to go. If it were me, and I was going AIO, I'd go for the H110.

 

Bigger fans cool better for less noise, and greater surface area in a heat sink or radiator results in lower temps.

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Martin,

 

Thanks again for the all the input!  You've given me a lot to think about and I haven't made up my mind yet.  I'll pop back in if I think of additional questions!

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