Better cards versus SLI/Crossfire?

Okay, so I'm a little confused on what would be better so I'm hoping someone can clarify for me....

I'm updating my computer and going to buy a new video card. The choices are between two 4670 crossfired, two 9800gt sli'd, or one better card ... limit is somewhere around $200 (I think I can fit in a 10.5 inch card, it's a A6010 Lian Li case)

Question is, does sli/crossfire make a huge difference or should I go with the better cards? I read in the stickied thread depends on supported software, etc. But that doesn't really tell me how it functions in real life.

Play games such as Fallout 3 right now on med/high settings using a 8800gt with decent success.
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  1. 4670 < 4830

    8800GT/9800GT ~ 4830

    Two 8800GTS SLied= 1 9800GX2 (approx. ~ two 8800GT/9800GT SLied)

    Two 9800GT > 1 GTX260
    Two 9800GT ~ 1 GTX280

    If you budget is around 200, get two 9800GTs from newegg and SLi them.
  2. What about two 9800GTX+ or a single HD4850X2 ..
  3. I think, CrossFires go better than SLi..
  4. Opposite view to BLUESCREENDEATH here.
    You could get either 1 GTX260 or 1 x1Gb HD4870. The single cards will give a more stable system and will not be at the mercy of driver updates and game programmers in order to work properly.
    BUT neither will give the same raw FPS numbers as 2 9800GT BUT if you`re using a flatscreen monitor, anything over 60 is wasted, because the screen will not display it.
  5. Thanks for the comparisions BlueScreenDeath. 9800GT SLI'd is very tempting.. Plus those are smaller and though I believe 10.5 inch cards would fit, being a mid tower doesn't give tons of room. Haven't heard a lot about the 4830.

    coozie- But SLI is so sexy!! :). I do somewhat agree on stablity, something for me to consider...but it is becoming more mainstream so less problems. And it would force the decision between the 260 and 4870 which is a whole different discussion, lol. Upgradeablity is always a plus though.

    So the question now is...no matter which of these setups I decide on, it sounds as if they are fairly equlivent, correct? None are going to knock my booties off?
  6. If you're going for single cards, 4870 is a better choice than the GTX260 since it's cheaper and offers slightly better performance.

    Get a single card if you're going to upgrade to another in the future, ie. SLi two GTX260s or crossfire two 4870s. But that's power supply intensive and you might be bottle necked by your CPU.

    If you're not planning to upgrade your graphics card anymore after this purchase, then just go for two 9800GTs or two 4830s (about the same price, same performance). Make sure your mobo is either SLi or Crossfire compatible.
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