I would like to build a new PC, and I am having trouble deciding what to do between used or on/sale AM4 components or new AM5. I am aiming to build a VFIO machine and was told that Intel’s big little requires a bit more work, so it would be simplest to stay with AMD (haven’t confirmed independently yet). This is fine with me.
I live in Germany and everything is always so expensive here, and I haven’t seen much worth buying on the used market. Luckily, my parents may be coming over in December from the US, so I figured I could save some money by ordering at least RAM and CPU, which will fit in their carry-on luggage.
Question is then, is Black Friday/Cyber Monday the best time for deals? Any idea if AM5 will have any sales? It’s been a while since i’ve bought any hardware, and I am already running into decision fatigue. I am willing to spend 1500 EUR, but i’d still like to optimize spending.
These last couple of years of just wasn’t worth the hassle of getting anything.
Then again, with USDEUR being uncharacteristically down this year, retailers might try harder to sell stock stateside - 2008/2009/2010 we were able to see huge discounts.
On the other hand, if nothing pans out discount wise, waiting an extra month will provide you with more choices around AM5 motherboards, and DDR5 RAM pricing will probably go down regardless of currency.
Thanks for the insight! This even answers a bit on how long I should wait in the worst case scenario. Nothing is pressing right now, so I’ve got no issues waiting some extra months if that’ll save me a bit. I’ll just do my best to gather an inventory on some components i’d like and try to track if any big discounts come.
It all depends how badly you want to stay current gen for the next three years.
If you are planning on staying current gen every other year, the AM5 platform should be worth it. Same motherboard can cover three CPU upgrades and allow you to stay current gen for much longer. Shit is EXPENSIVE right now though, best time to buy should be middle to end of Q1 next year.
For AM4 I would recommend something along these lines, it’s a starting point so feel free to edit to whatever you like. A 5900X could be a better purchase for you, VFIO X570 makes the Aorus Master almost a must-buy, and less than 64 GB will give you a bad time. You can save $500-$600 on the GPU though, depending on what you want.
To sum it up, right now you will pay a $250 premium to “future proof” your system. I realise this is above your budget; please understand I posted two recommended systems, if you already have a few of these parts it becomes significantly cheaper. AM5 is worth it if you plan on upgrading the next 3 years; if you are not, AM4 offers the better deal right now.
I do not really recommend going lower than a 5900X on a VFIO system - you can, but that’s like choosing to commute to work on a bike for 50 miles, every day. Not ideal.
Hey thanks for the detailed response. I didn’t realize I should get a top-of-the-line CPU in the VFIO build. I thought a mid range would be generally okay, but I can understand why it’s best to afford yourself the headroom.
As @MisteryAngel stated, I would just use the iGPU for the host. I need to limit every watt where feasible given the current state of things here in Europe. I generally try to do so anyway. This leaves me with AM5, as I also want to repurpose my existing system as one for the living room.
Luckily I have the storage, case, etc, but I am guessing my RM550 won’t supply top-end cards with the 7950x. So that’ll be some extra costs of course.
All things considered, I know my options and have to be on the look out for some deals. But I’ll need to pull the trigger eventually so I guess I won’t cross my fingers. Many thanks for the input.
Note that you do not need to go high end, but since 8 cores are starting to become mainstream your virtual gaming rig would want that too. This means either a 7900X or 7950X is the better option, but a 7700X would still be doable. I just feel a 4/8 or 4/12 split is a lot better than a 2/6 split.
GPU and PSU is up to you what makes most sense, but for high end gear 700W+ is recommended. 6600 for 1080p, 6700 XT for 1440p, 6900 XT for 4k.
As a last point, while VFIO is certainly awesome, the use case for games has both drastically diminished and expanded.
Expanded, because now we can run VFIO without needing two GPUs on high end hardware. Yay! And virtualized computers running games could be the next frontier in gaming - compatibility is just through the roof.
Diminished, because Proton these days is getting so good, it has better compatibility than Windows in many cases. But you still need Windows for online gaming which incidentally is the one key area VFIO isn’t quite good enough (bloody EAC and it’s ilk).
Im not fully sure how good vfio would work with the new intel platform,
in regards to the P and E cores situation.
That might be a question for wendell.
Because “if” vfio also works well with the new intel cpu’s,
then that might actually be a interesting option as well.
The 13700K has 8P / 16C + 8E cores which i think is a more interesting,
cpu compared to the 7700X at a competitive price point.
Only downside is it’s power consumption and thermals.
You make some good points. I am honestly fine with Proton and then dual booting if I have to for some games. I really liked the idea of being able to code, work, etc then switch to gaming without restarting, but I wouldn’t shoehorn the build that way if there are other reasons to avoid that kind if build. I’ll have to look into it.
But… One reason I am stuck with Windows is all of my friends still chat in Xbox Live. So I use the Windows companion app . I just need to tell them to get over it and use something like Discord with me.
Edit: or use Anbox and the Xbox App. Just found out this would be an option. I’ll have to test that!
I only heard about some difficulties with Intels big/little architecture, but I still have to look into it. I know Wendell mentioned the issues that exist on Linux in general aren’t a reason to avoid the architecture, but maybe they compound when adding VFIO. I don’t know, but I was willing to get 13th gen before I heard some reasons to avoid it.
All of this was easier when I got my i5-7400 for free and needed only a GPU. All the considerations for a new PC, when coupled with your needs, is overwhelming!
As above i would not (and am not planning to) bother with VFIO in 2022.
As above, proton is getting pretty damn good and for multiplayer online stuff VFIO has quirks anyhow.
However, if you are still planning on doing VFIO i’d look into AM5 due to the onboard GPU. Trying to do it with AM4 means either compromising CPU selection or dealing with multiple PCIe cards and that’s just a lot of hassle and expense.
@stotting to answer your question, Yes, you could, in theory, use an AMD graphics card for VFIO. However, most people use a Nividia card for VFIO because they are easier to set up with VFIO than AMD graphic cards. At least, that is what I have read.
This is true, but with an asterisk - depending on the GPU generation you’ll have a better time with one or the other as the host. Right now Nvidia is favored, but this could change with the RTX 4000 and RX 7000 series, and again next time. So going with two AMD cards is a viable path forward, too.
Discounts have been pretty meh to be honest. SSD prices have been higher then I expected, especially 1tb Gen 4. Not really sure on motherboards but I can say I haven’t seen anything but one AM5 deal. On cases, if it’s 2+ years old it’s on sale, anything new full price or over-msrp.