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Advice on a ~$200 card for an old system

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October 20, 2009 9:52:36 AM

What is the best card in the $175-$225 range?

I currently have a 8400GS (as my 8800GTS broke). I was thinking of the 9800GTX+, or one of ati's last gen cards.

Specs:
Core 2 Duo E6400 @ 2.16Ghz
2GB RAM
The PSU was a bit more than needed for the 8800GTS, don' t remember the wattage.

Thank you.

More about : advice 200 card system

a c 376 U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 10:22:17 AM

In that price range we'd really need to know what your psu can handle. Also that CPU is pretty weak and a card that expensive would be kind of wasted on it. If you can/are willing to overclock it that would help though. Also what resolution you are going to be using is important for an appropriate recommendation.

That said the answer to your question is an HD4890 or this GTX 275;
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Expanding your price range to include an HD5850 would be wise but only if you are going to upgrade that CPU as well.
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 12:41:41 PM

It all depends on what you are doing (which games you play ect...), and what PSU you have. If you want to save a bit of cash you can pick up a GTS 250 on tigerdirect for $110, and use the rest for more RAM (up it to 4GB at least).
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a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 3:07:12 PM

4890/275 will be bottlenecked by your CPU.
(
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/athlon-ii-x3,2452.h...

See the latest article on toms,Even those 100$ CPU which perform better than your CPU show some bnek)

The best for you will be a HD5770 or HD 4870 if you wanna go cheap...
OC your CPU to unleash full power of these GPUs.
October 20, 2009 3:40:07 PM

I am willing to OC my CPU and even buy an aftermarket cooler for it. I plan to play at 1280x1024 resolution. As for my PSU, I have a 600W PSU with decent amperage.

At first I was thinking getting a HD5870, as I noticed that shipping it from US would save me $160 compared to buying it here, but I decided I do not want to spend that much and there would be better offers when I have enough money to build a new system. Also I think the new gen ati cards would bottleneck my CPU too much.

So.... I guess I'll think about the HD5770 then, but I also am curious what nVidia will have to offer with it's next gen cards.
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 3:40:31 PM

Shoot, I'd even say 4850 or 4770 and put the rest in the bank for a major upgrade down the road.
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 3:47:25 PM

Grey Fox said:

So.... I guess I'll think about the HD5770 then, but I also am curious what nVidia will have to offer with it's next gen cards.



Newer cards will keep coming all the time...
Its best to buy now!

For your resolution 4870/5770 will be overkill...
But if you are willing to keep the monitor for 2-3 years then they will be good future proof cards in your case...

Go with any one of those...
October 20, 2009 3:58:54 PM

I don't really need it to be very future proof, as the moment I get the chance, I will get a new system, my current "goal/dream" is SLI or Crossfire. but then again I could use the card I am getting now for the SLI/Crossfire later.... Hmm....

Okay, thank you all for your help.

As for OCing, know any good cheap CPU coolers?
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 4:05:42 PM

At your resolution a GTS 250 would be plenty. As would the ATI 4850. The 4870/5770, GTX 260 cards would be more than you need.

If your goal is to completely rebuild a new system in the near future, I'd go for the cheap solution now. Or, you can buy a real nice GPU now, realizing you won't get it's performance yet, and use that GPU after you rebuild later.
October 20, 2009 6:41:24 PM

With your monitor and system a 4850 is the way to go. It'll save you some cash and should allow you to max everything out as much as your CPU will allow. Anything more than that is going to require a new system to get your moneys worth from it. With the way prices come down, if that new system is more than six months down the road it's not worth investing in a high price card right now. Besides, the 4850 is really pretty good, especially at the resolution of your monitor, when you do get a new system it will serve you well in it also.
a c 376 U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 8:21:49 PM

Yeah, at that resolution just get an HD4850/HD4770 and OC that CPU. Anything more would be a waste of money. You should be able to get a decent OC on the processor even just on stock cooling.
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 8:29:32 PM

The HD 5750 outperforms both the HD 4850/4770 and is only a bit more expensive; it uses less power, less heat, etc. So that's another option. The HD 4890 is definitely the best buy right now though, as it can be had for ~$160 with mail-in rebates. I'd recommend setting aside some of your money for 2GB more of memory. Tests show the extra memory increases game performance by at least 10% on average by itself.
October 20, 2009 9:02:59 PM

The 5750 does not outperform the 4870. It's hurt somewhat by it's lower bandwidth. It's less graphics power for more money but the power savings is nice. The 4850 is just cheap. They can be had for around a 100 dollars. The OP's rig doesn't gain anything from the faster cards. If the 4830 was still available and he could get it for 75 or less I'd say choose that one and save even more money. You're just not going to see much difference on a core 2 dou clocked at 2.16 ghz and a 1280 x 1024 monitor.
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 9:22:34 PM

chriskrum said:
The 5750 does not outperform the 4870. It's hurt somewhat by it's lower bandwidth. It's less graphics power for more money but the power savings is nice. The 4850 is just cheap. They can be had for around a 100 dollars. The OP's rig doesn't gain anything from the faster cards. If the 4830 was still available and he could get it for 75 or less I'd say choose that one and save even more money. You're just not going to see much difference on a core 2 dou clocked at 2.16 ghz and a 1280 x 1024 monitor.


Well I'm glad I said the 4850/4770. His setup is not going to bottleneck a 5750 because it wouldn't bottleneck a 4870. Anything above that and maybe.
a c 376 U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 10:11:12 PM

Might as well go with an HD4870 if you are going to spend the $130 it would cost for a HD5750.
Really either an HD4670 or 9600GSO should be fine for 1280 x 1024 and they can both be had for about $40 after rebate at the moment on newegg.
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2009 11:15:09 PM

jyjjy said:
Might as well go with an HD4870 if you are going to spend the $130 it would cost for a HD5750.
Really either an HD4670 or 9600GSO should be fine for 1280 x 1024 and they can both be had for about $40 after rebate at the moment on newegg.


And why should he downgrade from his previous 8800GTS? Sure the thing no longer works, but why put in a lesser card?
October 21, 2009 12:17:18 AM

The gt250, hd 4770(which i didnt know was so awesome), and the hd 4850(i would choose this one) are all good to go for you.
October 21, 2009 1:33:15 AM

brockh said:
Well I'm glad I said the 4850/4770. His setup is not going to bottleneck a 5750 because it wouldn't bottleneck a 4870. Anything above that and maybe.


My bad. I read 4850/4870, it's not what you wrote.
a b U Graphics card
October 21, 2009 1:42:56 AM

Ummm... If you don't mind me asking.... Can your mobo handle SLI or Crossfire. IF not either don't bother with any SLI/Crossfire recomendations. If it does, go with Crossfiring the 4850s at newegg for 100$ total its 200$ for a great preformance. If you want to go with single cards for now. The best choices are the 4870/4890s since they are budget preformers. Um go with the 4870s, you'd get the best preformance for your money, since. I've heard that the 4890s only preform a few fps better than the 4870s but are like... 40$ more for the same 1gb card. meaning a 4870 1gb vs a 4890 1gb. Umm.. 275s i'd say are to prices, but who knows, since Intel mobos have always prefered the nVidia chips over the ATI chips.
a b U Graphics card
October 21, 2009 1:44:45 AM

Sorry double post, umm and about the cooling go with the Cooler Master Hyper 212 i think it is. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... It is a great decent cooler. And its cooler master. Oh and learn to cable manage/ try to cable manage as it will greatly improve airflow.
a c 376 U Graphics card
October 21, 2009 11:04:05 AM

jerreece said:
And why should he downgrade from his previous 8800GTS? Sure the thing no longer works, but why put in a lesser card?

Because they are dirt cheap and entirely appropriate for his resolution and CPU? To save money now and later upgrade the CPU, monitor and card all at once?
a b U Graphics card
October 22, 2009 3:18:29 AM

O.o Jy, he doesn't need to save on his GPU since, the C2D will be a valid CPU/great CPU for a long tim. And if he were two get a good GPU now, he could just transfer it to his next build. Why take the hassle of getting a crappy GPU and then spend an extra 40$ later?(meaning you'd buy the crappy GPU now(9600s 40$) then spend more money later) Just get a good GPU now then transfer if you ever update. But, upgrade your RAM when you upgrade GPU.
a c 376 U Graphics card
October 22, 2009 2:27:37 PM

If he OCs that CPU to 3ish ghz then it will be acceptable for the moment but far from great even now, much less in the future. Those two cards are very far from crappy for his resolution and at $40 they are by far the best deal around for low resolution gaming.
The argument that he would save money by purchasing a card more powerful than he needs at the moment in order to transfer it to some computer he might build at some point in the future is simply wrong. This is $40 we are talking about and the price of video cards is always dropping. Would you be surprised if an HD5850 costs $150 a year from today? I sure wouldn't. If he builds a new PC with a high res monitor in a year an HD4870 will likely be showing its age at that point and worth replacing when he never really needed it at all for gaming at 1280 x 1024.
a b U Graphics card
October 22, 2009 6:52:29 PM

If a complete rebuild is in the cards in the next 6 months, a 5770 would be an excellent choice, as the crossfire scaling approaches 100%, and two of them will kill any title at high resolution for some time to come.
a b U Graphics card
October 23, 2009 2:28:05 AM

EXACTLY THANK YOU JOFA! God..... I see your logic Jy. But, why do that? For all we know, the Fermi performance could not best the 5xxx series, therefore prices are unpredictable. And either your crazy or something, DX10 will stay mainstream for a while, years to come infact. And even if the 4870 is overkill for his resoulution, why spend more when you could just get it now. And yes Jofa i agree with the 5xxx thing too.
!