i7 870 and GTX 980ti Windows 10 and XP Gaming PC

Oct 30, 2023 | Computing, Retro Gaming

After realising that the Core 2 Quad Xeon rig I built a few years earlier was totally bottlenecking the GTX Titan in my Dual Booted Windows XP / Windows 10 Gaming Rig / workshop PC I started doing some digging and found out that one of the last platforms to support floppy drives, IDE drives, parallel ports and serial ports was the Intel P55 chipset on the Gigabyte GA P55 1st Gen i series motherboard.

One little note is that I used these modified Drivers from Phils Computer Lab to get both the GTX Titan and the GTX 980ti working under Windows XP.

Clone SSD’s for the P55 rig

The first headache I ran into was getting the SSD to work on the new system. After cloning it to a new SSD it was not liking the boot device. No matter what I did, it just didnt want to clone over.

In the end, I gave up and purchased a 1TB sata SSD and did fresh installs of both Operating systems. This also allows me to install the games onto the boot partitions for each OS which makes backups and migration much easier in the future.

Constant crashing

Even discounting the annoying boot issues, once it was fresh installed I was still getting LOTS of bluescreens. Turns out, it was ram and motherboard related.

I went through a huge ram testing phase and ran memtest86+ on every stick of DDR3 I had. I found 2 bad sticks but also realised that the H55 gigabyte motherboard I had originally got was faulty and only 1 ram slot was working and the other slots were bad.

I ended up finding a better P55 board that was basically the same and swapped all the parts over and the system was solid with the same components.

Core 2 Quad Benchmarks

As you can tell with the Cinebench, Tomb Raider and 3D Mark results, the CPU was heavily bottlenecking this system while gaming with awful performance at 1080p.

i5 750 and GTX Titan Benchmarks

After the upgraded motherboard, ram and cpu most things came up in performance, weirdly except the Tomb Raider results.

i7 870 and GTX 980ti Benchmarks

Not being happy enough, I found an i7 870 and overclocked it to 3.8ghz and swapped to a Windforce GTX 980ti G1 Gaming. This DOUBLED the gaming performance in Tomb Raider from 36fps to 69fps at 1080p and 3Dmark 2001SE went from 55,481 to 63,295. The 3D Mark 2001SE world record was 320,020, my system was a farcry from that result but it was running on much faster system and exotic cooling solutions, still used a 980ti though!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *