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1GB 4850/8800GT vs 512mb for 'futureproofing'

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 21, 2008 5:00:21 PM

At the moment it doesn't make much sense to buy the 1Gb versions of these graphics cards, because the performance increase in most programmes/games would be negligible. However, I 'm not planning on buying another card for some time at least...would it make more sense to buy the 1Gb version? In a year's time I think it's quite likely that some games would require that amount of memory...would there be an advantage if that were to occur?

Thnx for any replies...
August 21, 2008 5:14:38 PM

The main advantage of have a 1Gb memory is to allow for greater resolutions 1920x1200 etc... Otherwise for any resolution lower it's a waste of your money, unless you can get hold of it for the same price as a 512mb version.

It's not exactly future proofing unless you intend to upgrade your screen in the near future.

Just my 2 cents mind.
August 21, 2008 5:16:09 PM

I think unless you are gaming at huge resolutions the 1gb versions of those cards won't make much of a difference for the extra cost involved. I can't remember the review I read but it showed very little difference between 512mb and 1gb versions of the older 3870, I doubt much has changed.
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August 21, 2008 5:16:50 PM

I don't think the 8800gt is fast enough to use 1gb of VRAM (lacks processing power). Google 8800gt 512mb vs 1gb...it was only gaining like a single frame at 1900x1200. In fact, at lower resolutions the 1gb card is slower due to increased memory latency?
http://en.expreview.com/2007/12/30/review8800gt-how-man...

The 4850 would benefit with the additional 512mb in my opinion, since it's significantly faster than the 8800gt/gts/gtx, especially with AA/AF cranked up at higher resolutions.
August 21, 2008 6:44:01 PM

Thanks for the answers...you're right, I 'll first have to decide on what monitor I 'm going to use. I think I 'll go for the 1Gb 4850 (the 8800GTX which is an inferior card had 768mb as standard, so I guess the 4850 would probably benefit from more than 512mb)...
a b U Graphics card
August 21, 2008 7:02:04 PM

Well 1GB would also be useful for very large Textures, like Id plans on using in their future games, and also for buffers and GPGPU-aware games/apps.

Overall though I'd say the featurs of an HD4850-512MB would outweigth the memory benefits of a GF8800GT-1GB.

There are some limitations for resolution and AA, but any talk of 'futureproofing' or more aptly future-looking would be where these cards are not playing 2560x1600 with 4XAA but more reasonable settings and so the efficiencies and features would be more important.

IMO a 1GB HD4850 makes alot more sense than a 1GB 8800GT. But I wouldn't pay more than $50 for the extra memory, because it would make more sense to simply save that premium and re-buy later when the HD4850 might possible get held back due to VRAM size. But if the premium is small and you're looking long term, sure get the 1GB.
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