My company just bought me a Dell Inspiron 530. The vitals are...
2.4g Core 2 quad processor (Q6600)
6g Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz
Vista Home Premium Edition (64-bit)
It has a single PCI-e x 16 (1.0) slot.
I would like to turn it into a low-end-to-decent gaming rig. In other words, I'd like to play the latest games but I don't need the settings maxed out. Since I managed to play and enjoy Crysis on an aging Dell Dimension 8300, P4, with a 256mb x800gto card, I figured just about any 512mb card would be a significant upgrade.
So, from a price standpoint (both are about $100 from Newegg), it's come down to the 9600 GT and the HD 3870. I've checked Dell's forums and both should run on the stock 350w PSU. Any thoughts between the two cards? Since I don't really want to do to much modding, does one run hotter than the other? Are there any other card in $125 range that I should consider instead?
I had a 3870 1gig card. It choked at 12x10 playing COD4. There are a couple of 9600gt's in the shop but I never played on either of them so I can't comment about their performance. Crysis does however, from experience, play better on nvidia products.