What Video Card would be best paired with a p4 560j?

I was wondering if anyone has an idea of what the best graphics card would be to upgrade to on my system.
Currently I have a Pentium 4 560j (3.6 ghz) with 2 GB DDR2-533 and an X800 Pro 256 Pci-e. The x800 is starting to show its age in newer games... when I max out Oblivion at 1280x1024; it works but only pulls ~10-20fps outside at stock speeds. Had to throw on a 15% OC to make it steadily playable outside and not constantly dip down into the teens (single digits if theres lots of action :( ) .

So, I am seriously considering upgrading my video card; and I was wondering what the most useful upgrade I could get is. I was entertaining thoughts about the 8800 gts/gtx but I think my cpu is too much of a bottleneck for that to be worth the purchase. So I am thinking something along the lines of an x1950xt? Any suggestions?

This was one that caught my eye... http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814102067.

Also, I dont necessarily need this card now, so would it be worth while to wait for some mid range dx10 cards to show up?
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  1. What card? If you're gaming, the best one you can afford.

    The X1950 XT is a good buy. But your X800 Pro isn't horrible, holding on to next year isn't a bad strategy either.

    I guess it comes down to whether or not you have a game - right now - that you can't play at settings you find acceptable.

    But if you're upgrading for the future, don't.
    That's always a waste of time because video cards only get cheaper and better. Upgrade when the killer game comes out that you can't play, or at least can't play to your satisfaction... that's the only time it makes sense to upgrade.
  2. Thanks for the advice. I figure I will clarify what I am looking for too...

    I am looking to upgrade to a card that will put another 2 years or so of life into my system ideally. I don't really want to upgrade my core system (CPU+mobo) cause thats a pain and it gets pricey fast, so I guess I could rephrase my question as what is the cheapest card that will effectively extend the life of my system another year or two, and what card will offer me the largest price/performance benefit based on my current cpu?

    I put together this system about 2 years ago and it probably only has another year of being useful assuming no upgrades as far as gaming is concerned. I can't stand playing oblivion at 10 fps in combat, so that is what is making me want to upgrade. I really like what I have read about the 1900/1950 card variants, and I am thinking that they offer a better option than the g80/r600 solutions on my system. I expect I will just build a new system once I get out of college in another 2 years, so I can just throw in a good dx10 (/10.1/11? lol) card then when I have a new cpu.

    Is the 1950xt the best card available given those constraints? I tend to not want to spend the money on upper tier cards ($300+) since the price performance ratio gets bad fast, and will probably just be worse given my rather dated cpu.

    {edit} The other reason I am thinking about upgrading is that I am thinking that any newer cards then the 1950 will see vastly diminishing returns on my CPU. Judging from benchmarks, the new dx10 cards need all the horsepower your cpu can give them
  3. Well, you've convinced me... you need an X1950 XT. :D

    Only problem is, I'm not sure it'll last 2 years though. All indications would be that it should, but the problem is, we have no idea how the X1950 XT will perform in Crysis or any of the other next gen titles coming out next year...

    If you really need your card to last 2 years, you should have a hard look at the 8800 GTS.

    Then again, the GTS is so much more expensive, buying the X1950 XT now and re-buying a midrange Dx10 card in a year or so might be the same price when you consider you'll have an X1950 XT to sell.

    So all things considered, maybe the X1950 XT is the way to go for you. Just don't count on it lasting 2 years because there are no guarantees with anything less than an 8800 for that kind of time span.
  4. While I agree the 8800GTS should/would last longer, we really don't know how well it will do in Crysis either. Especially in DX10.
  5. I've seen a few Crysis demos on the 8800 already, they're very impressive. Code is probably not optimized yet so it's a pretty sure thing an 8800 will Crysis nicely on release.

    Not sure if it was Dx10 though... but the card likely has the horsepower to last 2 years. Hell, I doubt the X1950 XT will have a problem in 2 years, but it's less of a sure thing is all.
  6. Agreed on the HP. I wanted an 8800GTS but just couldn't stomach the cost without seeing what R600 does in performance and to prices. SO I opted for an IceQ X1950XT to get me through the next 6 months.

    Lucky you, I'd like to see some Crysis action myself. Glad to hear things look good for the G80's.
  7. Quote:
    Lucky you, I'd like to see some Crysis action myself.

    Be my guest... :D

  8. Do you think the 8800GTS would be worth it on my CPU though? I haven't been able to see any benchmarks of the g80 paired with older p4's, and I get the feeling that the difference in performance on my CPU between a 1950XT and an 8800GTS is not enough to justify the cost increase.
  9. Crysis should run very nicely on a 3.6 Ghz Pentium and 8800. I'd put money on that.
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