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Best card for 4yr old Mobo

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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November 15, 2009 6:53:15 PM

Howdy all..

I'm considering upgrading the 8600GT that's currently on my gaming box. Mostly as I'm a little frustrated by the 256mb memory and the fact it kinda limps along on minimum settings in GTA 4

The problem, perhaps, is the age of the system.

It's based on an Asus A8N-SLI mobo which was one of their early ones (2005 vintage) and whilst it's got the fastest CPU I can jam in there (opteron 185) and 3G ram, I can't help thinking there's only so far I can go with the peripherals before I'm bottlenecking elsewhere.

I've heard stories that some of the newer cards aren't compatible with PCI-E1.0 which I suspect is the standard my mobo is built on, which may also affect my choice some.

So what's good out there, how far should I go? Upgrade? Stick another 8600GT in there in SLI?

How long before I'm going to struggle with latest games titles?

Any thoughts?

G

More about : card 4yr mobo

a c 180 U Graphics card
November 15, 2009 7:12:22 PM

What is the resolution of your monitor and what PSU is installed?
Right now the safest options are the HD4670 or low power 9800GT, both of which take all their power from the PCI-E slot. Both will be a big improvement over the existing 8600:

http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/best-graphics-card,review...

I would ignore SLI, it may sound attractive but, with two such weak cards, any game that does not support it will suffer.
November 15, 2009 7:56:46 PM

Got a pair of 1280x1024 tft's and the PSU recently got upgraded to a 700w so I reckon I've got some headroom there..

Would prefer Nvidia over ATI (brand loyalty I guess) unless the ATI is definitely superior/cheaper at this level..

G
Related resources
November 15, 2009 8:05:54 PM

4890 = gtx275 4890 = 180~ gtx275 = 270+
November 15, 2009 8:24:40 PM

ubernoobie said:
4890 = gtx275 4890 = 180~ gtx275 = 270+



Eh? Are we talking about power consumption here?

Would either of the cards mentioned above work on my mobo?
a c 180 U Graphics card
November 16, 2009 5:31:27 PM

Ubernoobie means: The HD4890 is equal to the GTX275 The HD4890 is about 180 dollars US and the GTX275 is about 270 dollars US, although the 'Egg prices are a little different, the GTX275 is still rather more expensive.
Both will run on a PCI-E 1.0 motherboard and as long as it supports PCI-E at X16 speeds neither card will suffer more than a tiny, really tiny, performance loss.
As long as the PSU has the correct 6 and 8 pin connectors I see no problems with it driving a single card of this calibre.
Unless you span the games you play over both monitors, I would suggest you look to either the HD4870 or GTX260: They are far cheaper and, at 1280x1024 resolution would easily play anything you throw at them at maximum settings.
If you have Vista or Win7 and will keep this rig for a while, also consider the HD5770, it's performance is equal to the GTX260 and a little less than the HD4870. It has better connectivity, lower power requirements and DX11 compliance, its downside is price, particularly when compared with the HD4870.
So, do you take the green pill...Or the red?
November 16, 2009 6:58:35 PM

coozie7 said:
Ubernoobie means: The HD4890 is equal to the GTX275 The HD4890 is about 180 dollars US and the GTX275 is about 270 dollars US, although the 'Egg prices are a little different, the GTX275 is still rather more expensive.
Both will run on a PCI-E 1.0 motherboard and as long as it supports PCI-E at X16 speeds neither card will suffer more than a tiny, really tiny, performance loss.
As long as the PSU has the correct 6 and 8 pin connectors I see no problems with it driving a single card of this calibre.
Unless you span the games you play over both monitors, I would suggest you look to either the HD4870 or GTX260: They are far cheaper and, at 1280x1024 resolution would easily play anything you throw at them at maximum settings.
If you have Vista or Win7 and will keep this rig for a while, also consider the HD5770, it's performance is equal to the GTX260 and a little less than the HD4870. It has better connectivity, lower power requirements and DX11 compliance, its downside is price, particularly when compared with the HD4870.
So, do you take the green pill...Or the red?


Thanks for the translation ;) 

It looks like the 4870 is a tad cheaper than the GTX260 though possibly because I'm seeing more options on the VRam onboard. I'd probably plump for 1Gb as I know GTA4 likes a lot of it. which puts the prices in a similar ballpark per spec..

hmm. Christmas is coming, guess I'll have to be nice.

Cheers for the insight

G
a b U Graphics card
November 16, 2009 7:16:30 PM

Right now (and for the forseeable future) ATI will hold the bang-for-the-buck crown, and it isn't exactly a close race.
a c 180 U Graphics card
November 16, 2009 8:18:13 PM

@ Ouch: Stick with 1Gb cards, 512Mb is plenty for most games but GTA IV needs more so it would be fairer to compare the 1Gb HD4870 with the GTX260.
Time to send those begging letters to Santa;)
!