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What's the best graphics card for $150

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July 21, 2011 3:46:38 PM

Getting ready to shop for a good graphics card. I want to ask your opinions on which graphics card for $150--$175. I can always buy another identical card in the future. I am a user of adobe cs5 photoshop. I don't play many games but would like the capability to do so.
Thanks The noob.

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July 22, 2011 6:37:25 PM

Here's a silly question maybe. I currently have a cheap video card and am using a 1920 x 1080 screen resolution (max). The card has no hdmi connector but my monitor has hdmi capability. The new card the card mentioned in this thread has hdmi connectors. Question is will I achieve a higher resolution then the 1920 x 1080 that I have currently.
Thanks the noob.
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July 22, 2011 7:36:36 PM

Im betting you have an HDMI 1.3 monitor. I think it can go to 2560×1600, not my area of expertise. But Dual-Link DVI and HDMI are the same to me. I use Dual link due to 3D since it can run at higher rates. Yes, both are HDCP capable and support 1080p definition. I can't notice the difference between the two personally.

To answer your original: the 6850 or GTX460(1GB) would be in your price range and would be the 2 top cards for that range. The 6870 is obviously better than the two.

You can look at the few benchmarks here:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-6870-rade...

And don't get those GTX550's. Almost same price and severely outperformed by the two.
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July 22, 2011 7:59:21 PM

is cs7 even out? to my knowledge they are at cs5 but thats not the point. i would look into the 6850 then flash its bios into a 6870
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July 22, 2011 8:07:00 PM

Thanks for the correction I mistyped. I don't know how to flash its bios. The noob.
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July 22, 2011 8:27:21 PM

irvinparrett said:
Getting ready to shop for a good graphics card. I want to ask your opinions on which graphics card for $150--$175. I can always buy another identical card in the future. I am a user of adobe cs5 photoshop. I don't play many games but would like the capability to do so.
Thanks The noob.

For gaming, here is a good article, which will list many ati cards.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-graphics-card,...

But if your app is CS5, I believe that it can take advantage of the CUDA capabilities of Nvidia cards.
Therefore something like the GTX460 would be appropriate.
Since you do no gaming, I think you would do just as well with a much lesser Nvidia card.
The CS5 forums would be a better place to get an authoritative opinion on that.

HDMI is digital output with audio included. That is what a typical TV monitor needs.
The quality should be the same with a DVI connection.
Either way, you should be able to use the native 1080P (1920 x 1080) resolution of your monitor, and no more.

As an aside, check into using a very large amount of ram to speed up your processing. Ram is cheap.
Again check the CS5 forums for benchmarks.
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July 23, 2011 4:11:56 PM

Best answer selected by irvinparrett.
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July 27, 2011 1:02:24 PM


Thanks I will be receiving the SAPPHIRE 100314-3L Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
tomorrow UPS. It was $174.99 with a $20.00 rebate. Also, included was Dirt3 a $49.00 value. Total price after rebate $154.99
Thanks for the info. I am looking forward to overclocking it. If you have any links to overclock this card (how-tos) please paste them here. :bounce:  :bounce:  :bounce: 
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July 27, 2011 7:21:38 PM

Well it's been a long long time since I've own and ATi card. But the same rules apply for hte most part http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/graphics/2010/09/15/ho...

Personally I use MSI Afterburner which is just Rivatuner branded by MSI, which mostly everyone uses. There's others out there such as RivaTuner itself too. If you want to be slow and steady, it is recommended to increase by 10mhz core/mem and then do a test for artifacts.

Artifacts are mostly visible with tough programs that work the GPU such as FurMark which will usually appear as some sort of tearing or square tiny boxes (usually occurs for a split second) or even dots. Eventually you'll get to a point where no matter how much you increase there will awlays be artifacts which means you up the cV. When it comes ot voltage, there's a math I can't remember, but you can up it slightly each time where your comfortable. I believe Afterburner doesn't let you overburn your card. Then eventually if you want to go to the max you'll get to the point where no more overclocking is possible.

Here's another small thing http://www.guru3d.com/article/gigabyte-radeon-hd-6870-r... Guru3D usually puts a max overclock they can find (Remember each video card, even if its same GPU and make, is different like people. This card might be able to hit it higher, others may not).

Sorry I'm not much of a teacher lol
It is something that has a lot of trial and error in it, so you'll get experience with it one way or another.
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Pretty sure this is Sapphire's warranty policy http://www.sapphiretech.com/presentation/support/suppor... . It's best to overclock using software like mentioned above, not editing the card's BIOS which will lock it in the clock and voltage all the time. Many companies don't like the BIOS being touched. And if you overclock with software, there's no way a company can tell it's been overclcoked unless its burned. I'm pretty sure Sapphire is ok with overclocking as they don't specify it's not ok.
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