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Best Graphics Card for a 380w Antec Earthwatts PSU

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September 18, 2008 3:04:28 AM

Hey this is my first time posting, glad I could join the community.

Ok so I have an Antec 380w Earthwatts PSU (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371005). In my case right now I have a Core2Duo 2.2 ghz, one SATA 7200 RPM hard drive, 2gb of RAM, one optical drive (DVD burner) and a nVidia 7900gs.

I want to get a new graphics card (an nVidia, I'm not an ATI fan) but wondering what's the best card I can get for how much power I have and how much I'm running. I'd love at least an 8800gt. Can anyone give me links to cards that would work? I'm looking for something between $100-$200. Thanks.


-Denominator

EDIT: I'm looking at this card in particular as well:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130325

I really can't find a better card (nVidia anyway) for under $200. Maybe someone else can. Thanks.
September 18, 2008 3:08:24 AM

Well the absolute best card for under $200 that can run on a 380w Earthwatts is the 4850, which performs a tad bit better than the 9800GTX and can be had for $150 AR, or $140 with the up and coming Best Buy deal this weekend.
September 18, 2008 3:12:59 AM

IndigoMoss said:
Well the absolute best card for under $200 that can run on a 380w Earthwatts is the 4850, which performs a tad bit better than the 9800GTX and can be had for $150 AR, or $140 with the up and coming Best Buy deal this weekend.


Right, and I've heard that about the 4850 (good to know my PSU can run it). But I'm not a huge ATI fan for reasons I'm not going to get into, so I'm not sure if I want to go the ATI route even if it's however many %s faster than the nVidia for that price. BUT I'm totally not against the idea, and would like to see all my options before I make a decision. - Thanks, I'll definitley take the under consideration.

EDIT: I'm actually looking at the ATI specs some more. Wow, maybe it is way ahead of the card I suggested... but by how much?

So how about the best nVidia for under $200? Will that card be able to perform on that PSU under that setup.
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September 18, 2008 3:47:01 AM

The Radeon 4850 is definitely a much more powerful card. If you want to know how much faster a 4850 is than an 8800 GT then check out this review

http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/video/display/ati-rade...

You can also check out the charts here at Tom's hardware.

http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/gaming-graphics-char...


Really though I don't know about running a 4850 or an 8800GT off of just a 380W Antec Earthwatts PSU. You have 17A on each 12V rail with means a max 204W from any one rail while you max load allowed by your PSU for both rails combined is 324W, and thats assuming that your 5v and 3v rail don't draw more than 58W, even though the PSU allows them to draw up to 130W. The Radeon 4850 alone draws about 110W.

I'm just saying if you can fit within that power budget it's going to be tight, and if your PSU can handle it, the strain of pushing it will shorten it's lifespan.
September 18, 2008 4:23:48 AM

I'm going to second the "get another psu" post.

Here is why. It isnt because you can't run the card on yours, its because it will be so close to max capacity. What happens is that when you run a PSU at such a high load, the power tends to be less clean, which can cause serious instability issues.

You can pick up a decent 550w for ~$80 and you will be rdy for a later upgrade. Thankfully PSU's arent like processors or motherboards, where the socket types change frequently. If you buy a new (quality) PSU, you can potentially be using it over your next 2 system upgrades.
September 18, 2008 5:00:15 AM

His whole system will draw just over 200 watts... He is fine with an 4850 or 8800gt. The antec ew run at 80+ efficiency, nothing to worry about. I'd suggest the 4850, imo.
September 18, 2008 5:35:19 AM

Go with the 4670 from ATI or 9600Gt from Nvidia.
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