So I think that it is time to upgrade my video card. Having a hell of a time deciding. Gaming is just part of what I do. What I am looking for actually is hardware assisted rendering in photoshop, and true hardware assisted video encoding. I have a 7900gt right now. My monitor is only 1680x1050 22". And to be honest I havent gamed on it for a while. I want to try to justify the cost of a 4850 or 4870 crossfire setup, or a gtx 260. Gaming will be nice on either system. However I do a ton of photo manipulation in photoshop and hear the new one will be gpu accelerated. Also with the release of avivo (software encoding) and Cuda, I want to kind of get a feel for what is out there. Avivo is cool and all, but I want hardware. With 2 4870's in crossfire they should put out what 1.7 terabyte, but if they never write the code to use it they are useless to me. Any thoughts?
if you want power for the money, 4870 is best bet right now. later on will be the Super RV770, which will supposedly run much faster than the current 4870. And another time in the future, the 1GB version of the 4870 will be released. For photo editing and video editing, the 4870 is good. The VERY best thing to do for photo/video editing is to have a very powerful quad core, since you will see a better increase in performance from that if you arent already running one. (OC'd Q6600, 9450, 9770, etc)
And if you are concerned about CUDA, CUDA is only useful if the software is programmed in C and meant to run on the cards like that. So mainstream software like Photoshop may not really grab onto that tech. (It would be in their best interest to do it, but IDK is they will.)
I have actually heard about some cuda plugins for photoshop now, and supposedly the photoshop guys have demo'd photoshop using gpu power. It was an amazing difference. Hardware video encoding is a must. I am sick of buying dual cores and quad cores for a marginal increase in encoding speed, when all they need is to tap the gpu for insane increases. Looks like I will wait to upgrade. My 7900 gt does fine in photoshop. And as far as encoding goes, i will wait n see