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Need Video Card Suggestions for my I7 rig!

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 23, 2009 9:49:45 PM

Having problems trying to decide what cards to go with. I'm probably not going to be doing any overclocking or benchmarking. Just want to play games close to as high as they will go, while also trying to keep the noise and temperatures down. Also would like to stay under $500.

Was thinking about going with:

Dual -- SAPPHIRE Vapor-X Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Would anyone suggest going with different video cards or going with just one card??? If so why??

So far my build is:

Antec Nine Hundred Two

Intel Core i7 920 2.66Ghz

ASUS P6T Intel X58

CORSAIR CMPSU-1000HX 1000W

Dual -- Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB

OCZ XMP Ready Series 12GB (6 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600

Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit

Cooler Master V8 CPU Cooler
a b U Graphics card
April 23, 2009 9:53:48 PM

Dual 4870s are great.
a b U Graphics card
April 23, 2009 9:56:31 PM

+!
The 1gig would help at high resolution.
Related resources
April 23, 2009 10:06:21 PM

+1

Ever tough of 1 GTX285 Now and Sli on the road ?
a b U Graphics card
April 23, 2009 11:02:51 PM

Those are quality cards. Though I am not a fan of the display outputs on them. I would prefer dual DVI, or it they insisted on being fancy a display port.

Though if you are an overclocker I would recommend going with the 4890 if you want to stick ati.. would also recommend XFX branded cards as they are the only ATI board partner that covers overclocking in the warranty.

If you are considering nvidia, you can overclock a 275 for the performance of the 285.. or press a 285 to the sky if you don't mind paying the cash :) 

Note that currently crossfire scales much better on an i7 than SLI.. but I expect Nvidia to fix their drivers soon (They kinda have to).
a b U Graphics card
April 24, 2009 3:36:55 AM

If you can find deals on the 4890 under $200, crossfiring them would be a killer setup. Definitely something to keep in mind. You can still find them a bit above 200 if price isn't a huge concern.

The 4890x2 is on the way but the timeframe is a bit up in the air.
April 24, 2009 3:45:02 AM

Yep. 4890 seems to be really nice. And proven to be WELL OCable
April 24, 2009 2:15:52 PM

Thanks for the suggestions so far guys.

I thought about maybe doing Dual Sapphire 4890's but thought twice due to the noise and temperature spike compared to the Dual Sapphire Vapor-X 4870's.

Anyone know if the noise and temp on those 4890's would be a huge jump compared to the vapor-x 4870's?
April 24, 2009 5:21:02 PM

I cant ..

but i can say that my BFG GTX285 OC2 is not that loud. I was expecting more then when its doing. My system is loaded with 10fans but all on fan controller. I start earing the GPU fan when its spining over 65% and can tell that its lil noisy from 70-75%. Usually its spinning at about 55-60% when im playing for about 70c. So no, its not noisy !

If anyone have a 4890 just tell us about this card !
April 24, 2009 6:58:34 PM

depends which 4890 you get.

some of the newer one's have non-reference coolers and come pre oc'd at 950mhz and 1100mhz so you could probably hit 1ghz+ if you had one of those and you'd be into GTX 285 oc'd territory then.
April 24, 2009 7:14:52 PM

carnage_0070 said:
Thanks for the suggestions so far guys.

I thought about maybe doing Dual Sapphire 4890's but thought twice due to the noise and temperature spike compared to the Dual Sapphire Vapor-X 4870's.

Anyone know if the noise and temp on those 4890's would be a huge jump compared to the vapor-x 4870's?

Yeah ATI cards are run hot cards and in sli they really boost the ambient temperature in a case so i'd stick to vapor-x coolers over a stock cooler for 4890 from what i hear it's also quite loud. Anyways 2 4870 very few things that can't run just fine.
a b U Graphics card
April 24, 2009 7:22:35 PM

My stock coolers are dead silent. It is only at 60%+ they make substantial noise.

They exaust air out of the case, the ambiant temperature isnt a concern in a good case.

At 100% fan speed the VaporX is FAR quieter.. though there is no situation I can envision in proper ventalation the fan woudl ever need to be anywhere near that speed.

I love my 4890's to death, though they are more challengnig to overclock highly in crossfire than alone. 940/1050 is as high as I can get with rock solid stability. (as with all overclocking, it is entirely based on luck of the draw just how high you can get.)
April 24, 2009 7:47:21 PM

THX deadalus685 !
a c 150 U Graphics card
April 24, 2009 7:49:02 PM

The HD4890 runs cooler than the HD4870 in idle.

Your 12GB is overkill and just a waste of heat unless you have a specific need for it which is rare. 6GB is fine. I don't there's currently a single video game that benefits above 3GB of System RAM yet. You'll cache a lot of applications for a nice multitasking boost but it also begins dropping after 3GB. It would be very hard to notice any difference between 4GB and 6GB and NONE above 6GB.
a b U Graphics card
April 24, 2009 7:55:44 PM

High amounts of RAM are a triky thing to recommend anyone.. I LOSE performance goign from 4 to 8gig. (Very slightly)

My reasons were to accomodate my SSD's by removing my need to use any pagefile except in the most obsene of situations, and drastically reduce random I/O's to them.

For 99% of users there is no reason to go above 4gig (or 6gig in triple channel). But there certainly is an advantage in some situations.
April 24, 2009 8:14:16 PM

I have a Sapphire hd4870 1GB in crossfire with HIS hd4870 1GB and they are running perfectly fine.
Please note taht the Vipor-X has a bit higher temp at idle, somewhere around 67 but at load they never go over 80C, that is in Furmark.... and cards are oced at 790/1000.

Cheers

Edit: I was talking about my setup specificaly. My Vipor-X came at stock clock, but is handling 790/1000 without any problems, same for my HIS HD4870 1GB
a b U Graphics card
April 24, 2009 8:19:09 PM

Only the toxic version is overclocked, even with the VaporX. The card the OP linked is at reference clocks.
April 24, 2009 8:33:42 PM

4890's would be awsome :p  rock solid. I would recomend only one for best bang for your buck and save the rest for the future upgrade!
April 24, 2009 10:17:51 PM

I personnally LOVE my GTX285. awaiting my Q9550 and ill be SOOO happy ;) 

4870 are pretty cheap now. A CF 4870 is the cheapest option.

Noise... when idling, all of those are going to be near dead silent. Gaming... I think the Vapor-X have the advantage but if you dont OC the card, running @ stock speed means that the fan will likely never speed over 60-65%. This mean that the card is just a lil louder but not that much.

April 24, 2009 11:11:03 PM

DON'T get a GTX285. i7s don't like single nVidia rigs. I'd take advantage of the i7's multi-card dominance and get some 4870s or 4890s. Maybe even dual GTX270s
April 25, 2009 1:58:48 AM

smithereen said:
DON'T get a GTX285. i7s don't like single nVidia rigs. I'd take advantage of the i7's multi-card dominance and get some 4870s or 4890s. Maybe even dual GTX270s


3dmark vantage GPU score
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 OCX : 12932
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 ....... : 12918
I7 @ 3.6ghz 4890 OC ..... : 10366

Crysis DX10 @ 1920x1200
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 OCX : 37fps
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 ....... : 35fps
I7 @ 3.6ghz 4890 OC ..... : 31fps

Call of duty WAW @ 1920x1200
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 OCX : 63fps
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 ....... : 54fps
I7 @ 3.6ghz 4890 OC ..... : 62fps

Far Cry 2 @ 1920x1200
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 OCX : 48fps
I7 @ 3.6ghz GTX285 ....... : 45fps
I7 @ 3.6ghz 4890 OC ..... : 36fps

I dont know what your speaking about ...

Edit : FROM guru3d
June 17, 2009 10:42:37 PM

Sorry. I read and wrote GTX285 and thought GTX280.
a c 271 U Graphics card
June 18, 2009 2:19:37 AM

daedalus685 said:
Note that currently crossfire scales much better on an i7 than SLI.. but I expect Nvidia to fix their drivers soon (They kinda have to).

And they have.
!