Graphic card help
What are the most important characteristics of the graphic card?What should I consider when buying one?
First, define what your budget is as well as what your current setup is. If you have a weak setup then you won't be able to get the most out of more powerful cards. Also define what games you want to play and at what settings you would like to play them at. Then, since your on Tom's Hardware, look at the charts to compare them.
The most important characteristic of the graphic Card is that it works! If they dont you can not use the computer.
The most important characteristic differs from person to person. Some want the fastest, some its the price/performance ratio, some its only price. For me its price to performance. The HD4800 is around 150-200 depending on where you get it. The HD4850 is $150 at Best Buy now.
1.- The card's "RAM" -> bigger resolutions require more VRAM for textures.
2.- The graphical processor "speed" -> just like in CPUs 1Mhz from ATI is not the same from nVidia. The logic "the more the better" works in the same line of cards: 8800's, 9800's, GTX200's, HD4000's, etc... Or if they share the same architecture (the way they "do" things).
3.- The video card's RAM "speed" -> same logic: the faster the better among types. Different GDDR's have different ways of using that "speed": x1, x2, x4, etc. This alone ain't a hard decisive factor.
4.- The "wideness of the river" -> more bits imply more lanes between the GPU and the VRAM. This alone ain't a hard decisive factor.
5.- "How much water can go trough the river" -> the merge of points 3 and 4 into 1 single metric. This can be a significant point to purchase.
6.- Kinda hard to explain in short, but they are the way the card "paints", "shades" and "sizes" things basically. Lame explanation, but meh...
7.- Processed things the GPU can write in the memory of the card per second. Kinda like saying "done things per second" in the VRAM.
If someone can clear up a few things, it'll be much appreciated, lol.
Anywhoo, if you get too technical, you'll get a headache instead of a video card purchase decision, lol.
EDIT: Spelling xP