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Requesting Advice on Graphics Card Upgrade Plz

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 27, 2008 8:13:40 AM

:hello: 

Right now I have an evga 8600gts video card.

I want to upgrade, and right now I have kinda narrowed it to an 8800gt ($200), an 8800gts 512 ($300), or an 9800 gtx black edition (cuz free cod4 makes it even out to same as a stock 9800gtx) ($400). Also maybe sli 8800gt.
I am kinda confused which one to get though because my monitor is only a 19 inch at 1440x900, so I dont know what the performance differences will be like on my monitor.
I also didnt know if my processor (e6750 @ 2.66ghz) would be able to keep up.

So I am looking for recommendations, and maybe you can answer about the resolutions and processor too, and how much gain it will be vs my 8600gts and vs the others

I have enough money for anything up there by the way.
I dont want to upgrade like really fast also, I want something that will last a while, and will not have problems overheating.

And dont say I can get it cheaper anywhere else I only want to buy local and that is the prices I have here.
I also dont want to overclock last time i tried that my mouse kept freezing.

I play Crysis, Company of Heroes, CS:S, COD2, and COD4 (When I finally buy it).
I am looking to play UT3, Oblivion, and Assassins Creed.

PSU: 700W OCZ gamexstream
RAM: 3gb ballistix
MoBo: evga 680i LT SLI
CPU: e6750 @ 2.66
Case: Apevia X-Plorer

Ok I know this is a lot of information for you all but help would be very much appreciated. :wahoo:  :wahoo: 
a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2008 8:29:13 AM

Well the 9800gtx will likely perform the best. I'd personally take the 8800gts 512mb as it performs marginally slower,and it's nearly half the price.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I have the same card from xfx and i played through Crysis on all high settings, excluding water which i had on medium. (last level was framerate hell for some reason due to it). This was at a screen resolution of 1680x1050 and it was easily playable throughout the game. I don't ever recall it goin' below 20fps.

COD4 max settings never went below 40 in heavy action with smoke effects. Otherwise it was stuck at 60.

Bioshock was rediculous, without vsync on it was almost always at 90fps.

Never played UT3

Oblivion plays like a dream.

And i'm sure Assassins Creed will work great.
April 27, 2008 8:39:43 AM

Improvement over 8600 will be vast, trust me, even the 7900GS performed better than them. Anyway, there is no way that the E6750 will bottleneck those cards. You might wanna consider overclocking it. Dont get the 9800GTX, its a scam. A 8800GTS overclocked to the same speeds does better, ughhh,where's dagger, come now post those benchies again.
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April 27, 2008 11:33:05 AM

I would go for the 9800 GTX, if you don't want to tweak with the clocks. It is factory oced and the bonus COD4.
The advantage is also that it can do tri-sli.
a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2008 12:28:39 PM

At those prices, I would go for the 8800GT. It does good at your resolution. Crysis will be the biggest struggle, but really even the 9800GTX isn't a huge gain over it in that game. $400 for crysis would be better spent on two 8800GT than one 9800GTX.
http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/nvidia_geforce_9800...
http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/geforce_9600_gt_sli...


The e6750 is fine at gaming resolutions/settings. I wouldn't be too concerned about your cpu. Shame not to consider OC'in it, but that is your call.

And one 8800GT is more than twice as powerful as an 8600GTS....no comparison. Take a look at the 1440x900 results in games that matter to you in this review: http://www.legionhardware.com/document.php?id=710&p=2


April 27, 2008 6:04:46 PM

Does the 9800gtx have dx10.1?
April 27, 2008 6:05:46 PM

Ok thanks for the help.
And If anyone wanted to help me overclock id be more than happy to OC.

My mouse just always froze after about 1min of OS unless i cranked up my CPU voltage from 1.21V to like 1.41V.
Now that I think about it though it might have been my RAM with too little voltage or too high of timings. (2x1gb crucial ballistix @ 4 4 4 12)

K anyways thanks for the help and plz answer that last question cuz if it has dx10.1 im probably gona get the 9800 instead because it will be more future proof.
April 27, 2008 6:05:58 PM

no, there are no Nvidia cards out yet that have DX 10.1, nor are there any games. Excluding Assassin's Creed, but I think they took the DX 10.1 out..
April 27, 2008 7:25:40 PM

Ok and does anyone know more about the 8800gt because I just read that it averages 92C under load. Im kinda scared about this because my case is also not the best at cooling, and my 8600gts still reaches 71C, while that site says it only gets to 66C, so the 8800gt will likely get even hotter than 92C in my case...
April 27, 2008 9:04:20 PM

Also my local store has a BFG 9800 gtx for $305 after rebate. Would anybody recommend me getting this now.
a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2008 10:41:52 PM

The original 8800GT reference cooler with the smaller diameter fan is not very good. If left at factory settings, it could heat up quite a bit. Added to this was a problem that some ran 29% fan speed until the card was mid 80's. You could always adjust the fan manually and you would not hit those temps, but above 60% the stock fans got pretty loud. At 100% they were just plain aweful.

I was running SLI BFG 8800GT and my top card would get over 90 degrees is left at factory auto fan settings. I manually ran the fans at a higher voltage(rpm), but hated balancing noise with good cooling. So like many others ended up doing, I swapped my stock coolers for Zalman VF900's and got lower temps with less noise...much better.

Anyway, now there are non reference coolers, but also a redesigned reference cooler with larger diameter fan. That one is better than the original. Edit: here is a pic of the original reference cooler from the BFG 8800GT and the new style 8800GT cooler found also on the evga 8800GS.
a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2008 10:58:46 PM

steve394 said:
Also my local store has a BFG 9800 gtx for $305 after rebate. Would anybody recommend me getting this now.

Well, at $200 for the 8800GT, $300 for the G92 GTS, and $305 for the 9800GTX, yeah then the 9800 looks like a valid option for sure. At $400 it was not.
April 27, 2008 11:48:50 PM

Nice prices, I remember the day when everybody wanted G80 so bad, but they were so expensive. GTX-500+, GTS-400+, just out of reach for most of us. now, with G92, its a godsend.
April 28, 2008 12:04:47 AM

^^^ there she is, a bit late, but she has a life
a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2008 1:50:55 AM

The OP posted NOT to provide cheaper prices as he/she wanted to buy locally. Going by his $300 for the 8800GTS G92 or $305 AR for the 9800GTX, he'd be a fool not to buy the 9800GTX vs the 8800GTS.
April 28, 2008 2:40:26 AM

By the way, 400 was for the black edition, and it came with call of duty 4, which I was planning to buy anyway. So really, It is $350 for the black edition 9800gtx.
a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2008 2:59:30 AM

Still seems pricey when you can often buy the game for $40 and OC yourself. I guess your local price is $50 for the game?

I must admit, like Dagger, I have a hard time not providing links to cheaper cards too. The one dagger linked to is so much cheaper, or you could grab the XFX 8800GTS G92 with COD4, for $220 shipped after $20 rebate from the egg. You don't have to answer this, but I take it you either don't have a credit card, are from out of the USA, or can get a discount at this local shop?

I don't know, given your prices, I'd still lean toward two 8800GT or the $305 9800GTX.
April 28, 2008 3:59:39 AM

Yes I am from Canada and I am 15 years old so no, I do not have a credit card.
But I have a job so money is not a problem I just need to save for other things also too.
I might wait for my store to get more stock in as they have a BFG 8800gts for $250 but it was out of stock so I didnt mention it earlier.
April 28, 2008 4:01:23 AM

Also would SLI really do that much at my resolution?
I have heard that it is more effective at higher res.
a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2008 4:14:55 AM

You do not need to crank resolution to see SLI give benefits, you just have stress the GPU's. And this will depend on the games down the road. Typically, one 8800GT could run that resolution well, but in a rare game like Crysis, you would see valid gains with sli. DX10 very high, or even Win XP High with 4xaa would be situations where SLI would shine at that resolution. Here is an example, but too bad they didn't test very high DX10 or turn on fsaa. http://www.legionhardware.com/document.php?id=716&p=3

So, while 1680x1050 or above would better allow you to see real world gains with SLI, when you talk about spending $400, then SLI 8800GT is a valid option even at your resolution, assuming you would like to crank fsaa. But you are right, $400 is a bit pricey for 14x9 gaming and apart from Crysis you won't benefit much for the extra $100-200 you could save.
a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2008 8:05:03 AM

Which part of Canada are you from, if you don't mind me asking. Reason being is DirectCanada.com and NCIX.com are great places to get all your computer stuff.

I too am from Canada and purchased my stuff from both places. I don't have a credit card either, but i know someone who does and i simply fronted the cash.

But if that is not an option for you, i still recommend the 8800gts 512mb. At your local store price.
April 29, 2008 1:35:25 AM

So my local store got in some BFG 8800 gts 512's. They are $230 after the MIR. Does the brand really matter in terms of cooling and performance, because I am not as confident in BFG as say in XFX. Do they use the same fans, etc. If BFG is good then im getting this card unless some more agressive pricing happens.
April 29, 2008 1:39:36 AM

Ok I know i am asking a lot, but does anyone know or think anything about the 9900 series, in terms of performance and cost compared to the 8800gts 512. I dont want my card to be dwarfed or made obsolete as early as July.
April 29, 2008 2:00:46 AM

Ok and if i do get the 8800gts, will my 700W gamexstream be enough to handle 2 of them in SLI later down the line?
SLI zone says yes but I they dont have the same system config as me and probably use a crappier processor, so lol I am asking another question.

thanks alot btw for everyone that helped.

When I update my PC video on youtube Ill be sure to thank all of you over at Toms Hardware.
April 29, 2008 2:32:55 AM

steve394 said:
So my local store got in some BFG 8800 gts 512's. They are $230 after the MIR. Does the brand really matter in terms of cooling and performance, because I am not as confident in BFG as say in XFX. Do they use the same fans, etc. If BFG is good then im getting this card unless some more agressive pricing happens.

Get those. Brands don't matter. They're exactly the same. And 700 watts will do fine.
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 2:36:42 AM

^ yeah I agree with Dagger. Priced the same evga and XFX lifetime warranty is better than BFG's lifetime warranty (sounds odd), but if they all have the reference cooler, they are the same card. Go with the BFG if cheaper. That's exactly what I did with my 8800GT 's.
April 29, 2008 2:37:59 AM

pauldh said:
^ yeah I agree with Dagger. Priced the same evga and XFX lifetime warranty is better than BFG's lifetime warranty (sounds odd), but if they all have the reference cooler, they are the same card. Go with the BFG if cheaper.



Considering how fast graphics technology moves, why would you need any life time warranty? :na: 

They just using "Life Time" as a marketing gemmick, knowing they won't need to provide any more support than other brands' 3 year warranty.
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 2:42:36 AM

Sure, I can totally see that reasoning. And some brands like PNY define lifetime as in the time they keep making the card; a real scam.

I tend to keep cards for a long time, cycling them down from system to system to system, and even giving them away someday. So unlike most people I do value an evga style lifetime warranty. Not enough to pay extra for it, but it's a nice bonus if priced the same.
April 29, 2008 2:45:10 AM

pauldh said:
Sure, I can totally see that reasoning. And some brands like PNY define lifetime as in the time they keep making the card; a real scam.

I tend to keep cards for a long time, cycling them down from system to system to system, and even giving them away someday. So unlike most people I do value an evga style lifetime warranty. Not enough to pay extra for it, but it's a nice bonus if priced the same.

Meh, after 3 years, the best card would be too lousy to even give away. :p 
April 29, 2008 2:52:24 AM

Okay thanks guys, the 8800gts 512 seems to be about 5-10fps better than the 8800gt, and its only 30 bucks more, and it also comes with a dual slot cooler, which will help and I have lots of room in my case anyway. I could SLI them in the future, so I think I am going to pick up one tomorrow lol.

Thx to all!
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 2:55:35 AM

For $30, the speed and cooler is worth it for sure. Good choice. I put over $30 into just repacing each of my lousy reference 8800GT coolers, and don't have the speed to show for it. Enjoy your card.
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 3:15:59 AM

A little late, but definitely the GF8800GTS at those prices, and while some may prefer eVGA over BFG, BFG is still a quality mfr, with good warranty and customer support.

MemoryExpress has a bunch of them, and the only reason to consider something else would be if you plan on upgrading to some new marchitecture in the summer (next 90days), but that's a bit of a risk with the only similar 'value' eVGA being the GT 512 and at $199, I'd say go for the BFG GTS for the extra #30, just for the longevity of the single card, and likely higher resale value.

a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 3:20:00 AM

OT - Hey man, my Rangers can't catch a break. I'm watching the flyers recorded on the DVR right now. Montreal just got goal #2 during their pp. I am resisitng temptation to check the scores without watching the last 10 minutes.
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 3:22:08 AM

Yeah, cry, I paid $270 or so for mine back when the dollar was worth something even.
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 3:31:01 AM

I won't tell you the score, I watched the game live streaming at work.

Yeah prices are nutty, that it cost you more for a GF8600GTS just about a year ago than it does now for a GF8800GTS-512 is impressive. Values are getting close to the old R9500s IMO.
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 3:36:50 AM

lol, with 7 minutes left glad you didn't pull a spoiler on me. I agree with you. I am so stinking amazed with prices/value now that I'm almost sad to not have more builds going now. I wanna buy stuff with other peoplz money. :) 
April 29, 2008 3:39:32 AM

I can't wait for the day where onboard Graphics will be as powerful as current top end cards:D 

although by then, prob the games would still run like crapola! Let's hope Crytek doesn't make anymore games:)  lol although I would like to see part 2 Crysis story:p 
April 29, 2008 3:52:41 AM

Since you have an SLI board I would be looking at either 9600 or 8800Gt SLI, either setup will outperform a single 8800GTX and 9800GTX.
April 29, 2008 5:24:30 AM

You guys are still really lucky in the USA because your prices are way lower than up here on everything. I went down to Phoenix over spring break, and with the exchange rates and prices there, things were so much cheaper. Pair of Jordan shoes, $225 here, I would pay equal to $100 CAN there for same shoes. So US its not as bad as you think lol.
April 29, 2008 5:27:54 AM

Yea Im going with 8800gts 512 not SLI because I have low resolution, and I dont want the hassle of having low SLI performing games, etc. Also my mom might get mad if i buy 2 video cards lol she doesnt understand the SLI and stuff she will think its a waste.
April 29, 2008 5:58:40 AM

Yes, good choice. Go for it!
a b U Graphics card
April 29, 2008 3:36:48 PM

steve394 said:
You guys are still really lucky in the USA because your prices are way lower than up here on everything... ...So US its not as bad as you think lol.


Actually I'm from Calgary, and I was talking about how much the prices have dropped, and actually that's happened on both sides of the border.

It's still more expensive up here for alot of things despite places like Toronto having more population than many states combined, but even the remotest part of Montana has access to NewEgg or at least so some of our forum members would have us think. :sol: 

Anywhoo, it's a good deal, and yeah IMO stick with one card for now, and if anything re-sell later and then buy an HD4K or Gwhatever when they come out, likely that would offer the best experience and least hassle.
April 29, 2008 7:07:25 PM

Unless you play old games you won't run across too many games that don't perform better in SLI. MOST of the new games run better in SLI. But for a single card choice the 8800GTS is a good buy.
April 29, 2008 9:59:48 PM

cisco said:
Unless you play old games you won't run across too many games that don't perform better in SLI. MOST of the new games run better in SLI. But for a single card choice the 8800GTS is a good buy.

Meh, it's not like you can tell the difference between 60 and 90fps. :p 
a b U Graphics card
April 30, 2008 1:10:50 AM

^ But you sure can between 20 and 35. SLI currently rocks IMO, but you have to appreciate the cranked eye candy. SLI is not for people who ask "what is fsaa?" :) 
April 30, 2008 1:14:13 AM

pauldh said:
^ But you sure can between 20 and 35. SLI currently rocks IMO, but you have to appreciate the cranked eye candy. SLI is not for people who ask "what is fsaa?" :) 

For nearly all new games, like Call of Duty, you can tune up aa and af as high as you can, and the fps difference would still be around 60-90. Crysis is basically the only exception at this point.
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