My current rig:
Phenom II x4 920 oc'ed to 3.3 ( I LOVE THIS CPU!)
wd caviar black 640 gig hdd
ms sidewinder keyboard
acer 22" 1680 x 1050 monitor
vista x64 (yes, I actually bought it, and *gasp* I love it as well)
ocz 700w psu
what would give me the best performance (keep in mind that i lean towards ati because my mobo supports crossfire, I can't sli)
4870 (would be able to xfire when the games demand it)
4890 (see above)
gtx 275 (really no point, performs similarly to 4890, but cant xfire)
gtx 285 (have heard that this is severely overpriced. at $350, I can buy a 4870 x2 for $50 more)
a 4870 x2 is probably overkill at my resolution.
Games I [will] play:
Battlefield bad company 2/1943
red faction guerilla
Team Fortress 2
Left 4 dead
Unreal tourney 3
the absoulute most im willing to spend is $350, but im shooting for more like 200-250. if that gtx 285 really provides $100 worth of performance over a 4890, alright, I'll take it, but I honestly doubt it.
Just dont get the 285, the cheapest 285 is at 299 after rebate, and the cheapest 4890 is 199 after rebate, and 285 is like 10 percent faster than 4890, not worth your 100 bucks. 4890 or 4770 CF is good.
For those games, all you need is a 4870 1GB. I get about 55-120 FPS on Team Fortress 2 with everything maxed (except only 4x AA) at 1600x1200. It should be noted that online games (especially those developed by Valve) tend to be CPU intensive, so getting an 'extreme' graphics card is overkill.
the 4870 lose a lot of fps if its above 1600x1200
i would buy the gtx 275 it is cheapere then the gtx 285. and the gtx 285 is onley faster white 5-7% and you can always buy a ocercloked editon from evega or xfx