RE: Most important computer specs for flight sim?
Although dual core is not actually "used" by FS9, the improved architecture over what was Netburst makes my 2.4 conroe absolutely slay my old P4 3.0 Northwood. In other words, the core2 is much faster (smarter) even without the second core.
Just don't get the e6300. Only has 2mb L2 cache, and the 7x multiplier is not good 4 overclocking (requires more expensive ram).
The e6400 has 2mb cache also, but 8x multi makes it a better overclocker.
The e6600 is the sweet spot, with 4mb cache, and 9x multiplier, makes overclocking very easy on your ram, i.e. don't need super premium ram to keep up, as you would with the e6300.
Forget SLI, that's all I'll say about that.
Unfortunately, in the end it's not just any single hardware that will give better performance. Along with the cpu you will need a series 7 vid card, at least 1gb (but no more than 2gb) ddr667 or 800, and most importantly, a mainboard that will support the latest technologies and overclock well. There's been a lot of talk about the Gigabyte DS3.
i5 2500k / Asrock P67 Extreme4 gen3 / 8800GTS 512 / 8GB DDR3 1600 / CM hyper 212 / antec 550W / ASUS 23" VH232H / Windows 7 - 64
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