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Video Card for Oblivion... (Yes.. I know..)

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 21, 2007 1:16:17 PM

Hi all

Im just wanting to know what everyone would recommend for a video card.. I want to play at 1366x768 with everything on max.

I would prefer an ATI card.. but Im open for suggestions

More about : video card oblivion

March 21, 2007 1:23:04 PM

8800gtx, 8800gts, or 1950xtx. All will make oblivion fly.

And by fly I mean mid 20's through high 30's, outdoors, max detail, no AA. Obviously the 8800gtx would be the fastest of the 3.
March 21, 2007 1:34:09 PM

I would like to have AA though.. And would it be worth buying one of those now? I was also thinking i might just scuttle by with my x850xt for a bit and maybe get an x2900xt
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March 21, 2007 2:08:57 PM

I would reccomend the 8800GTS 320MB if you also have a good processor and enough interest in this game. It is definitely the high-end card for Oblivion with the best performance/price ratio; you'll be able to turn everything on and get smooth framerates at that resolution, including HDR which is impossible on your X850XT.

A weak processor would still bring your framerate down easily whenever there would be a couple NPCs, and additionnaly, the X850XT is not a bad performer in Oblivion at all. Hence the processor and interest conditions.

I myself would favor the ATI card but I don't think the X1950XT can be justified with what you currently have. It's just not fast enough.

See [H] Enthusiast for more info.

We won't see any affordable R600s for quite some time. The first models will launch in may, and after that you can expect 4 months before prices start to drop or they launch any scaled down version at a lower price.
March 21, 2007 4:03:10 PM

Im have an E6600 so the processing power is there, and I definitely am near addicted to the game..

And yeah.. that was my biggest fear.. waiting like 1/3 to 1/2 a year for a good ATI card thats under ~$300
a b U Graphics card
March 21, 2007 5:01:27 PM

The X1950XT will almost max out that resolution, but you'll have to tweak a few small settings or you'll have some slowdowns. 1024x768 4x/16XHQAF max but no ugly self shadows is fine on the X1950XT IMO, but it's still a bit slow in areas. I played 1280x1024 4xAA/8XHQAF with most settings maxed except no self shadows, no tree canopy shadows, shadow filtering low (hardly a difference), and indoor/outdoor shadows at 50%. You could also tweak grass height and beef up shadows a bit too. And that's pushing more pixels than your res, so I think you'll be quite happy with the X1950XT. But, If you truely want in your head to just set everything to max and nothing less is good enough, even at that low res, grab the 8800GTS. With a $60 difference, it's money well spent anyway.
March 21, 2007 5:18:20 PM

Quote:
The X1950XT will almost max out that resolution, but you'll have to tweak a few small settings or you'll have some slowdowns. 1024x768 4x/16XHQAF max but no ugly self shadows is fine on the X1950XT IMO, but it's still a bit slow in areas...

Hi Guys . Hey Pauldh how about a X1900XTX ??can i play oblivion like you said??i mean can i play the Oblivion in 1024x768+4xAA/16XHQAF W/O Self Shadows with 20~30FPS?? :D 
March 21, 2007 6:10:30 PM

Remember, that Oblivion really has no maximum settings. You can, of course, push the settings available in the in-game settings dialogue to their maximum, but through the .INI file, they can go even higher, and there are some options not even normally available. (such as making water reflect rocks, trees, creatures, the player, etc.) Plus you can also add texture-replacement mods to go from "large" to "super-sized."

With enough pushing, you can bring even an 8800GTX SLi setup to average 5fps. Ouch.

However, for the time being, I'm not certain if you really need a new card. While you probably might not be able to quite reach what you want with the current setup, you're not really ALL that far from it. However, if you want extra smoothness, I think that something like at least the Radeon X1950pro, or possibly the Radeon X1950XT. But up at that point, nVidia's GeForce 8 series looms, and unlike the Geforce 7 or 6, it's not a wimp with shaders, Oblivion's main killer. While the Radeon X1k cards tend to spank the GeForce 7 cards in Oblivion, the GeForce 8 cards muscle their way around rather well.

Lastly, if you plan on using texture-replacement packs like those made by Qarl, you'll want more than 256MB of RAM. At the very least, you'd want 512MB, possibly more; even at a resolution like what you list, it's possible to over-fill even the 768MB GeForce 8800GTX.
Quote:
Hi Guys . Hey Pauldh how about a X1900XTX ??can i play oblivion like you said??i mean can i play the Oblivion in 1024x768+4xAA/16XHQAF W/O Self Shadows with 20~30FPS?? :D 

The X1900XTX is still a substantial step away from the X1950XTX; the core is effectively the same, (the "+" on the "R580+" merely indicates that its VRAM controllers are modified to support GDDR4 as well as GDDR3) but the clock speeds for the RAM are different; 2000MHz compared to 1550MHz. The core's power on its own is the same, though.
March 21, 2007 7:54:41 PM

Oblivion is a chapter for itself anyway. I have quite a lot of experiences concerning the game and hardware upgrades for it myself (I upgraded my system 2 times one of the reasons both times was oblivion).
If you wanna play it at the resolution you said than an 8800 GTS 640 MB should do the trick, that is a minimum of 30 fps at 4xAA 16xAF in conjunction with HDR and max details outdoors. I'm playing at 1600x1200 with exactly those settings however I'm using an 8800 GTX, but then again, my resolution is set a little bit higher, and I get about 30 fps outside. You should now however that Oblivion is not a realistic application to test your performance (I get the fact though, there really ain't any single player RGP alternative atm and probably won't be in the near future, so it's understandable to tweak your system according to Oblivion).
Aside from Oblivion I can only tell you that if you're buying a new graphics card right now I would probably go for the GTX rather than the GTS since you already own a Core Duo 6600, which is kinda top-of-the-line, so the GTX would really get you the best deal of performance IMO. Especially if you look at other games that are supposed to be released in the next few months you might actually be more satsified with a GTX in the long run, cause it can deliver (judging from the benchmarks) about 20-30% more performance than the GTS can... so the 150 additional bucks are a good tradeoff I think.
a b U Graphics card
March 21, 2007 9:00:15 PM

Yeah I'd agree with the X1950Pro as a tempo solution with an eye to the R600 or G81, and the GTS-GTX for a little longer solution not looking for early replacement until say the G90/R700-G100.

For the price range of the cheapo X800s, the X1900GT would be the bare minimum, and far better too of course. Anything less that an X1900Gt IMO is a waste.
March 22, 2007 1:09:03 AM

Thanks for all the suggestions :D  You guys have been a big help

And like someone mention earlier I was planning on modding the game. ie: textures and other things (though not a ton - worth considering though..)

Anyway I'll be testing out the game Sunday with my X850XT so I'll see how it goes with that.. Maybe It'll do me just fine for now
a b U Graphics card
March 22, 2007 2:17:03 AM

Quote:
Hi Guys . Hey Pauldh how about a X1900XTX ??can i play oblivion like you said??i mean can i play the Oblivion in 1024x768+4xAA/16XHQAF W/O Self Shadows with 20~30FPS??

First person view you probably could stay above 20 fps, but I'd suspect you could find some dense areas in the mid teens in 3rd person view. I would think with a very similar setup to mine you would find those settings playable. Turning off shadows on grass and setting shadow filtering to low would give another nice fps boost with very little visual impact, if you wanted a bit more performance.
March 22, 2007 2:35:17 AM

Hey what in game settings can i use ?

Resolution 1024x12

I have the Evga overclocked version Gts 320megs. I would like to use mods as well .

Anyone have an idea ? :?
March 22, 2007 5:39:39 AM

Quote:
First person view you probably could stay above 20 fps, but I'd suspect you could find some dense areas in the mid teens in 3rd person view. I would think with a very similar setup to mine you would find those settings playable. Turning off shadows on grass and setting shadow filtering to low would give another nice fps boost with very little visual impact, if you wanted a bit more performance.

Big Thanks My Friend. :D 
i will use your tips about the shadows.
March 22, 2007 7:08:32 AM

as far as a few worthwhile oblivion mods:

Landscape LOD NormalMap Fix (increases distance viewing quality at virtually no cost to performance)
LowLowPoly Grass (increases performance with grass)
Natural Environments v2.12 (improves environment and weather visuals)
Illumination Within V1.0 (adds lighting to windows and other buildings)

and there are many more here http://elderscrolls.filefront.com/files/The_Elder_Scrol...;7128
a b U Graphics card
March 22, 2007 12:07:14 PM

Oh, no problem. Tweakguides will give you further tweaks like min grass height, and also list a few good mods to make it look better. But at 10x7 res, you shouldn't need too much performance tweaking on that rig.

http://www.tweakguides.com/Oblivion_1.html

I'm using all their recommended mods except the high resolution lanscape LOD replacement pack as my card has only 256MB on it. This could have a little affect lowering my performance, but sure makes it look better in the distance.
a b U Graphics card
March 22, 2007 12:26:16 PM

Natural Environments looks interesting, I'll have to try it.
March 22, 2007 5:36:10 PM

Natural Environments is a must. Makes everything look incredible, although I had trouble with the weather aspect of the mod, so I disabled that part. Everything else is awesome though.


I have an X1950Pro and Oblivion runs pretty incredible, considering my limited CPU. I have AA maxed out, 1280x1024, I turned shadows down to about half way, and turned grass down to about 2/3 full, and I use bloom instead of HDR. Looks great for such an old budget rig.
March 22, 2007 5:39:32 PM

Quote:
Oh, no problem. Tweakguides will give you further tweaks like min grass height, and also list a few good mods to make it look better. But at 10x7 res, you shouldn't need too much performance tweaking on that rig.
http://www.tweakguides.com/Oblivion_1.html


hoohoo :D 
Thanks again Man!
March 22, 2007 5:42:14 PM

Quote:
Hey what in game settings can i use ?

Resolution 1024x12

I have the Evga overclocked version Gts 320megs. I would like to use mods as well .

Anyone have an idea ? :?
At 1024x768 you can pretty much crank everything to full, though I'd always drop some of the shadows just because they're so useless. If you use very heavy texture replacers, like Qarl's, then your performance might take a serious hit, but other than that you should be entirely satisfied with your performance.

Quote:
Anyway I'll be testing out the game Sunday with my X850XT so I'll see how it goes with that.. Maybe It'll do me just fine for now
So you hadn't even tried it with your actual card? Tsss. If you don't mind missing HDR I think you'll be impressed with what the X850XT can do in Oblivion.
April 14, 2007 1:10:13 AM

hey guys you think a AMD X2 4200 would be work well with the geforce 8800GTS 320mb? would it be powerful enough to even be worth it? i wanted to just go with a X1950 pro but that 8800 GTS 320 it almost to good to pass up, especially if it drops to $240 after the R600 comes out.
April 14, 2007 1:39:05 AM

an X2 4200 should be just fine (i believe oblivion is dual core coded to an extent also, which certainly helps). however, if youre attempting to max out your framerates (low resolutions, low details, etc), and arent as concerned about just maintaining smooth performance, then a faster cpu may be necessary. heck, even a socket A cpu is able to maintain feasibly playable framerates for modern games, let alone a current model dual core, which easily surpasses a much outdated socket A processor.
April 15, 2007 2:32:46 AM

im just trying to get the best fps i can (40-50 would be nice) with the best graphics i could while maintaining the frame rate, would a X2 5600 and a X1950 pro work better? then just upgrade my graphics card in 5-6 months? i remember someone telling me that "game preformance isnt always about the best hardware, its about the best set-up" would you agree with this statement?
April 15, 2007 3:13:09 AM

An X1950XT, like others have suggest, should satisfy you. Though, for the extra $70-$80, you can get an eVGA 8800 GTS 320 MB, which is a bit better than an X1950XT and has dx10 support. I would wait to see what R600 has in store, but it's your decision.
April 15, 2007 6:06:32 AM

There's only one option 8800GTX-768MB for $536 right now, probably $450 after R600 launch. If you buy anything else it will look like poo, be chunky, and you'll be sorry.
April 15, 2007 6:10:07 AM

Quote:
hey guys you think a AMD X2 4200 would be work well with the geforce 8800GTS 320mb? would it be powerful enough to even be worth it? i wanted to just go with a X1950 pro but that 8800 GTS 320 it almost to good to pass up, especially if it drops to $240 after the R600 comes out.


It will work i'm not sure about the well part. I'd probably get an X2-3800+ Brisbane for $65 and OC it to 3GHz honestly.
April 15, 2007 7:44:18 AM

your cpu in all honesty is not going to be a big problem... especially for oblivion... ...for oblivion, the first thing to take a dive for performance is guaranteed to be your gpu... so you most certainly dont want to sacrifice performance here if you can help it... secondary comes memory amount (2GB is preferrable)... then cpu speed (dual core preferrable)... then memory speed (ddr2-667 at least usually, if youre running AM2 or C2D)... then hard drive (WD 160GB 8MB WD1600AAJS is only $54, but is the fastest 7200 available)... etc... ...at the very least go for an 8800GTS 320, as a minimum... especially if you can swing the price (evga 8800GTS 320 is $260 after $20 rebate)... as far as OCing, definetly do it, as youll save yourself most likely a decent amount of money that could go to the gpu purchase instead... the X2 3600+ is a prime example for OCing, which can get you fairly close to 3GHz, as was pointed out, for only $80 retail too (or $65 oem, with no heatsink included though)... ...or you can go the route of getting a faster cpu for more money... and sacrificing your gaming performance some by investing in a weaker gpu... ...your call though... ...as far as OCing your X2 4200+, im sure that can be pushed to at least 2.6GHz without much problem, if you were open to that

Quote:
im just trying to get the best fps i can (40-50 would be nice) with the best graphics i could while maintaining the frame rate, would a X2 5600 and a X1950 pro work better? then just upgrade my graphics card in 5-6 months? i remember someone telling me that "game preformance isnt always about the best hardware, its about the best set-up" would you agree with this statement?


well... regarding best hardware and best setup... as far as i can tell they usually go hand in hand... ...you could say best hardware period, or best hardware for the money... ...one is going to be absolute, and the other is going to be relative... ...if youre more budget conscious, go for whichever hardware fits your budget, and still offers acceptable performance (making multiple lesser replacement purchases usually ends up being more expensive in the long run, and if youre trying to save money, this usually would not be the way to go then, eg, an expensive gpu now, and another expensive gpu only a few months from now)... ...for the budget concious gamer, a cpu would be more of a waste to invest in, in all honesty (especially if your cpu is fairly recent, meaning within the last few years)... as the performance return is going to be minimal, compared to the performance boost of current gpus, over older gpus

either way, its advisable to wait until the R600 is released, if only for the possible price drops
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