Thanks fo r the reply, in the past I have only really used nvidia, but have heard great things about the recent ati offerings.
I think, however I may go with the gtx260, as it leaves room for me to hook up my pc to my larger tv (dont have a console) when I have the flat to myself!!
I dont expect crysis at full details, but these would play games such as mass effect (not played it through yet!) and fallout 3 at good rates?
my current card is fine for source games, but I can feel a drop in other games.
Most recently I played arma2 (which I have a feeling overheated my old card, causing it to die on me), would these cards be able to handle that reasonably? I know it is very demanding and I would possibly be limited by the cpu.
And if you look around you can find the GTX275 is around for the 150 pound mark.
Look at Scan, Overclockers, CCL, Pixmania, Microdirect and Novatech to start.
One point of caution: All these cards need a fairly potent PSU with at least twin 6 pin PCI-E connectors and 500W output and if you move up to the GTX275/HD4890 calibre they may need 1x6 pin and 1x8 pin and 550W output.
I think my psu is 600W from memory so hopefully it will suffice.
The tv has a pretty poor resolution (not 1080, possibly 1440x900 off the top of my head) so it wont be much of a problem I shouldn't think, but it'll be nice to watch films etc in widescreen. It would be used fairly irregularly since I dont often have the chance to have my pc in the lounge.
Also, would a 9800gt (my old card) fit in a small factor case? I think its micro atx, and would be an upgrade from a 8600gt, which is pretty small.
Also, coozie- thanks for those links, only really knew scan and overclockers.
Depends on the case and card, a lot of small cases need low profile or half height cards but if it'll fit it will be a nice upgrade.
Prices are all over the place right now: That HD4890 is a stupidly good deal: GTX275 performance for under 140 quid? You'd have a job finding a GTX260 for much less, and it is a much slower card. If your PSU is up to it, I would advise you to get the Scan HD4890.
It does seem like a good price. I have to wait a week or so for payday, but I will bookmark it and have a look. Its only £20 more than a 260 that I had my eye on, and cheaper than a factory OC'd card. The only niggling thing is that I've never used ati before, though I really shouldn't let that stop me.
Thanks for all the help. I'll spend the next week or so looking over the charts and trying to find the best deal. I think it might be best to go with a relatively cheap one so that I can look towards a new card in a couple of years.
A final note- the guru3d article (http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-4890-review-tes...) suggests the 4890>GTX260, apart from in Dead space (where at my resolution it suggests a "mere" 142 fps, more than enough!) and in far cry 2, where it still outperforms my card at the moment, with 49fps with 8xAA.
Thanks for the recommendation coozie, I am almost certain this will be my next card now!
^ Looks like the beastie, but then again I was on my Xth beer when I spotted it (or them...HeHe
Still, prices are, as you have just seen, fluctuating on an almost daily basis.
If you are going to use a resolution no higher than 1440x900 or thereabouts then I'll stop spending your money for you and drop the GTX275/HD4890 as a recommendation and say you were correct all along: Go for a GTX260, you can always SLI later if need be but at 1440x900 it's more than enough for smooth gameplay.
Keep the money handy in your credit card and an eye on the prices, particularly during the weekend when the 'specials' come out to play.