Best video card for 450w psu?

I currently have a 64 bit ATI X1050 with 128mb and 512 hypermemory.
My power supply is 450watts.

I have an Intel E2160 CPU and an Asrock 1333-D667 (intel 945g) chipset and 2gb ram (will be upgraded to 4gb soon).

I'm wondering what the best video card I can get with my current power supply. How good of a graphics card should I get before my cpu becomes the bottleneck?

I really don't want to spend a lot of money, so I'm wondering if an ATI HD3850 will be bottlenecked by my cpu and that I would need a new cpu to take advantage of the HD3850.

Furthermore, I am not sure if there is much room in my case for a new video card- I'm not sure how difficult it will be to install a 9.5" card.

I'm pretty sure that the HD3600 series cards are only 7-8" cards

By the way: Would 512mb ddr3 be a LOT better than 1024mb or DDR2 memory on a graphics card?

I will play most games at 1680x1050 or the newest games at 1280x1024 in windowed mode.

Do you think that either a 512mb ddr3 HD3650 or a 1024mb DDR2 HD3650 will be able to run Far Cry 2 on low settings?
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More about best video card 450w
  1. 3850 will not be bottlenecked by your CPU.
    Get a 3850 over the 3600s.
  2. My XFX 8800GT 512MB Alpha Dog Edition (Stock Clocks) runs on my Antec NeoHE 430W PSU that has three 12v rails at 16amps each. The card requires at least 26amps total on 12v rail(s) and at least 400W PSU.
  3. Should I maybe wait for the HD4600 series or something? I highly doubt a 9.5" card would even fit into my pc since it would be sticking out into one of the hard drive slots.

    Also, the card's cooler must be on the left side of the card if you lay the motherboard on the computercase/mobo on the ground and have the outputs (dvi, hdmi, sound, usb's, ethernet) facing backwards. If the cooler is on both sides of the card, then it won't fit either because then a piece on my mobo will interfere with installation of the card.

    PS: what do you mean by the "Rails" and how do you measure/read how many amps they can draw?
  4. Maybe you should wait for the 4600s
  5. The Gigabyte 8800GT uses a shorter board then most other 8800GT reference boards, it's only 71/4 inch long. I think the Asus is also. $123 after rebate and would work with a 450w power supply
  6. BTW this is what the inside looks like:

    This card is about 7" long, and I have about 9" total length from the one end of the case, to the tip of the one harddrive..... I supposed I could move the harddrive, but i hope the the card's cooler isn't massive like on the reference GTX280 cards.

    MY psu is a Thame Star ATX 450. Here's what it says on the sticker:
    (supposed to be a chart)
    Vac-Input,,,,,,,,|Volt 115/230v,,|,Current,10/5A|,Freq,50/60hz|

    I hope the forum doesn't mess up the formatting. (the commas are space holders, they don't have any meaning)
  7. I want AT LEAST 512mb memory on the video card.
  8. That power supply only has 20 AMPS on one rail according to what you have listed as its specs, I doubt it would be enough to run the 3850, I cant be 100% sure but i personally would be looking at upgrading the PSU as well.
    I can tell you for a fact that the 3850 wont fit unless you move the HDD. The sapphire version of the 3850 512 GDDR3 has a single slot solution that will fit in your case (if you move the HDD down). :)
  9. What COULD I get then with my current PSU?

    Should I wait for an HD4600? or a 45nm G200?

    I will move my hdd if necessary, only takes a couple seconds/minutes depends on if I can easily loosen the bolts.


    Can I run an 8600GT with only one 20amp rail? 1gb ddr2
    Or this one? 512mb dd3
  10. 512 ddr3 shold be better at your resolutions.

    3850 sounds like a btter choice than an 8600
  11. 8800gt 512mb stock cards are 9" cards.
  12. groo said:
    512 ddr3 shold be better at your resolutions.

    3850 sounds like a btter choice than an 8600

    When would 1gb of ddr2 be better though? Would it only be better at uber high resolutions where the games are unplayable anyways?
  13. The think with 256-bit graphic cards that they barely need a psu with pci-e connectors. So make sure ur psu got that. Minimum power voltage for great-budget graphic card is 22a@12v rail in ur psu.

    Below is an example psu that have pci-e connector that have enough for ur demanding graphic cards.

    These are great-budget graphic cards for todays game and better than hd 3850

    If u wanna go further, grab hd 4850. Its the most best price/peformance for ur bucks in nowadays.
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