Help!! Video card upgrade!!

Hello everyone!

I am looking for some advice on upgrading my video card. I've looked through a lot of online reviews for either ATI or Nvidia Cards, and can't decide on which would be best for my system. I am running a Pentium 4 HT 3.06, 2 GB ram, currently have a Biostar V7102GL26 GeForce 7100gs. My target games are UT 3, Deadspace, Fallout 3, and Stalker:Clear Sky, as well as upcoming titles like Starcraft 2 and Diablo 3. I have a 19' widescreen monitor and would like to run these games 1440x900 if possible. The 7100gs is getting dated and am looking for a good upgrade. Also, its an Gateway case and I think a microATX board, so theres not a lot of room and these new cards look giant. Can someone please help me!!
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  1. Can you fit a HD 4850 in there? It's about 9" long, depending on the manufacturer.

    More powerful cards would probably be bottlenecked by the rest of the system, so I wouldn't consider them.

    What kind of PSU do you have?
  2. ^+1.

    @OP: Mind giving detailed specs? esp. PSU.
  3. aevm said:
    Can you fit a HD 4850 in there? It's about 9" long, depending on the manufacturer.

    More powerful cards would probably be bottlenecked by the rest of the system, so I wouldn't consider them.

    What kind of PSU do you have?


    It'll be bottlenecked pretty badly. P4@3ghz is known to highly bottleneck a less powerful 8800gt, and somewhat bottleneck 3850. A better choice would be around the range of 9600gso/4670/3850.
  4. dagger said:
    It'll be bottlenecked pretty badly. P4@3ghz is known to highly bottleneck a less powerful 8800gt, and somewhat bottleneck 3850. A better choice would be around the range of 9600gso/4670/3850.


    it will bottleneck but he will get much more fps with the 4850 then the 9600/3850 regardless of the cpu.
  5. invisik said:
    it will bottleneck but he will get much more fps with the 4850 the 9600/3850 regardless of the cpu.


    Maybe slightly, but not much more. That's what bottlenecking does. 2-3 times the price for not much gain. :p
  6. I believe the PSU is 450w. I don't think a 4850 will fit, the 7100 is in there pretty snug. I was looking at the radeon 4670 but was told that the 3870 is better cause it has a 256bit bus instead of the 4670's 128.
  7. glasseyeball said:
    I believe the PSU is 450w. I don't think a 4850 will fit, the 7100 is in there pretty snug. I was looking at the radeon 4670 but was told that the 3870 is better cause it has a 256bit bus instead of the 4670's 128.


    Performance ranking:
    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Powercolor/HD_4670/26.html
  8. Looks good, only thing left is will it fit in my case. The 4670 form factor is smaller and uses less power, how much does the bus speed matter? between 256 and 128? Will the 3870 fit in my case?
  9. Ok look at these two cards....

    3870
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102752

    4670
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102792

    Which one? I think both will fit in my case.....if they aren't longer than 6 inches, i think thats all the room I got.
  10. glasseyeball said:
    Ok look at these two cards....

    3870
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102752

    4670
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102792

    Which one? I think both will fit in my case.....if they aren't longer than 6 inches, i think thats all the room I got.


    Since 3870 is $10 more, but offers more than 10% performance increase than 4670, that would be the better choice of the two.
    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Powercolor/HD_4670/26.html

    Although with 8800gt/9800gt being $110 ar plus free shipping (which adds $8.25 on prices of the others), it's better value.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130380
  11. dagger said:
    Since 3870 is $10 more, but offers more than 10% performance increase than 4670, that would be the better choice of the two.
    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Powercolor/HD_4670/26.html

    Although with 8800gt/9800gt being $110 ar plus free shipping (which adds $8.25 on prices of the others), it's better value.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130380


    Factor in CPU bottlenecking. I'd say he'll probably get about the same performance out of the 4670 as the 3870.
  12. I don't care what some of these guys say about the processor bottle necking your video card. I'd get the biggest, baddest video card I could get that would work with the power supply you have unless you're going to upgrade that if it's not good enough. You can't have enough gpu. the 128 cards are a joke if you want to play clear sky or anything else that will put demand on your system.
  13. Even with the bus difference? Also, choosing between ATI and Nvidia seems to just be a matter of which has the best price....
  14. well the 3870 is a pretty damn good card...I checked out my friend's 3870 and was quite impressed with its performance...
  15. swifty_morgan said:
    I don't care what some of these guys say about the processor bottle necking your video card. I'd get the biggest, baddest video card I could get that would work with the power supply you have unless you're going to upgrade that if it's not good enough. You can't have enough gpu. the 128 cards are a joke if you want to play clear sky or anything else that will put demand on your system.



    Well I am on a budget of about $100, so some of the bigger, badder cards are out of my range. Plus, my case is somewhat small so those 9 inch cards most likely won't fit.
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