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At what point is a card overkill for 1360x768?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 5, 2009 4:44:40 AM

Hello everyone. I'm going to be attempting my first gaming build soon but, before I get too deep into it, I want to find out how much my monitor might impact things. I use a 26" Sharp Aquos 720p LCD, which runs at a maximum resolution of 1360x720p. I was originally thinking an E8400 and a Radeon 4870, but wonder if this might be overkill for the games I play. While I predominately run World of Warcraft (not graphics intensive), I'll also be running LotRO and Everquest II (a bit more intensive) and want to keep my system viable for future MMO's that might be released.

I know that most cards will be able to handle WoW, it's the other two that I know less about. I suppose I just don't want to buy a more expensive card than I need when I run at a lower resolution that most gamers. A bit of future proofing (for MMO's) is important to me as well though. Any thoughts on appropriate cards would be great. Thanks!
a b U Graphics card
January 5, 2009 4:52:10 AM

well when future proofing the fastest cards are always going to be the best. However I think the 9800gt would be the best bang for buck. at less then half the price it would let you run your games on max.
January 5, 2009 5:15:03 AM

I'd go with a 4830 for 2 reasons:

1) It is cheap (it can be found for around 100 dollars on newegg) and can be overclocked to 4850 speeds.
2) It will provide plenty of speed for your games to run at max for a while to come, but it is not too overkill that you will be wasting your money.

It is cheaper to get a decent mid range every few years than it is to buy the top end cards to run games like WoW.
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January 5, 2009 5:26:11 AM

@nerdnic

Just a side note: A 4830 at the same speed is still slower than a 4850. The 4830 has 640 SP while the 4850 has 800.
January 5, 2009 5:31:25 AM

a 9600GT will play anything at max, usually with 8XAA. even in crysis it should get 2x or 4xAA

but for futureproofing reasons and any weird reason to want 16XAA, i recommend a 9800GT or 4830.
January 5, 2009 5:52:53 AM

If u addicted to AA ATI's 4830 will be your best choice.
January 5, 2009 10:00:16 AM

cyber_jockey said:
If u addicted to AA ATI's 4830 will be your best choice.

agreed they perform very well especially in AA +1 to 4830
January 5, 2009 11:16:22 AM

Lotro is a VERY good game for scaling, I can get over 100fps out of a 7600GT with "descent" graphics, If I want all the whistles and bells I can make my 4870 cry in certain areas of the game! It depends on what you want out of the game if you are wanting to max things in lotro (and to me its worth doing) then you will probably be wanting a 4850 minimum at that resolution, this will be overkill for some areas and just about right for good performance in the most demanding areas. You could go lower if you are prepared to play with settings or put up with low fps in the most graphically demanding areas.

Another thing worth bearing in mind as you like mmorpgs is that a small SSD hard drive can be very worthwhile reducing loading times when using doors etc as well as reducing lag in busy areas - some lag isnt caused by internet, server or gpu issues but by seek time lag as the hard drive scrambles to fetch the data for 50 players at once, theres a large number of textures involved in that sort of scenario, and a SSD really reduces seek time to find each texture.

My wife and I play lotro side by side on otherwise identical systems a lot of the time when she is hit with disk lag (you can feel the disk chuntering away) I will be running smooth. Particularly around the major quest hubs for the mines of moria at the moment. It wont increase FPS overall but it will smooth out some of the more stuttery busy areas. Its quite funny when following the same path as another player hitting a door at the same time as them and because I virtually instantly load with the SSD I can have handed in a quest and be heading on my way out before they've finished loading and started moving at all :D 
January 7, 2009 3:50:48 AM

Thank you for the thoughts everyone.
January 7, 2009 4:09:33 AM

dtq u got a nice wife :p  plays games with u...
!