I've got a pretty well-rounded gaming PC built by myself, adding new parts every so often. I would say I'm a very budget gamer, always looking for the best deals.
CPU- Core2Duo E4600 OC'd to 3.0GHz
2x1GB DDR2 800MHz
Gigabyte EP45-UD3R Mobo
Ultra 650W PSU
Antec 300 Case(cooling is not a problem)
usually gaming at 1440x900 resolution
currently using XP, but will upgrade to Windows 7 VERY soon.
What I'm trying to decide is what to upgrade here. I can't complain about the performance of my GPU, but I really hate the operating temps of it. I want to get something like this 9800GTX+ that runs much cooler, with a performance increase. Plus there's a great price right now. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Maybe even a downgrade to an 8800GTS would suffice for gaming with mostly the Source engine (L4D2, TF2, HL2, etc.).
If not that, then what GPU should I get that is between the $100-$175 price range? Never used ATI in my life, so any ATI suggestions are welcome. Kinda prefer Nvidia though. As far as brand goes, I like BFG, EVGA, etc. XFX disappoints me sometimes, but I will consider it if the card runs fairly cool.
If not the GPU, then what else could I upgrade here?
for that resolution you dont need any better graphic card but if you want more powerful card than that you can get 5770 or gtx 260 in that price range. gtx 260 is a little bit stronger than 5770. what type of games do you play and do you use antialising a lot?. if you upgrade to 7 you will need 2gb of ram more to run games more fluently
I was thinking I needed to get some more RAM when I get Windows 7. I play mostly Source games. Left 4 Dead 2, etc. But I am totally open to anything great that is released in the near future. The games I play usually put antialiasing on for me automatically.
Your card is fine. I would pay attention to some newegg deals for a cpu, mobo combo. Also get faster RAM.
For that games you dont need anything better than 9800gt but
gtx 260 will give you a really big performance jump from current Gpu and it will be more future proof. 9800gtx is just rebranded 8800gts and dont think about it. gtx 260 is faster than that. 448 bit vs 256 bit and 216 vs 128sp.
no his cpu is fine and faster ram dont impact in games
To be perfectly honest upgrading from a 9800GT to a 8800GTS or 9800GTX is not going to give you a TON of improvement, improment yes, eye shattering no. The issue right now is for the $200ish price range there really isn't anything NEW that blows me away. You have the 5750 and 5770 from ATI, but it is outperformed by their previous gen 4870 in every benchmark. The 4870 compares side by side with the Nvidia GTX260, however, Nvidia is far overpriced for some reason compared to it's ATI counterparts.
The problem with the new ATI cards are you have the 5770 at $180, but then jump to a 5850 for $300. So unless you want to drop $300 for mind blowing graphics, your next best option is the ATI 4890 for about $190. But that is if you are ok with not getting a DX11 card, which many people are fine with. The 4890 compares with Nvidia GTX 275, but they run $250-$300.
So when it comes down to your $100-$175 price range, I would recommend downing the extra $15 and go with the 4890, as it will be a nice jump in performance for you. I just think one of cards in the lower $100 range, just won't give you much of a punch.
I REALLY like the sound that 4890 from Newegg. It's reviews tell it all. Nvidia is just too gosh darn expensive!
I'm going to get another 2GB of DDR2 800MHz and Windows 7 64bit probably.
Now, if I were to get that 4890, would anything in my system bottleneck it? I just don't want to get something too powerful and have it slowed down by something else.
On second thought, maybe I don't want to spend quite that much since I need Windows 7 and 2GB of RAM.
What about a 5750 for like $140? What does that compare to the 9800GTX+? I'm not looking for Crysis type games here, just a little above average.
Screw upgrading the video card; it's fine for what you're doing right now and fairly well matched to your CPU.
I'd add 2GB more RAM first, and then later do the mobo, CPU and video card all at once. You'll likely find a good CPU/mobo combo deal, and by then the price of a 58xx card (which is what you really want) will hopefully have come down. Who knows, by then, maybe nvidia will even come out with a DX11 card that doesn't cost $5,000. But I wouldn't count on it.
If your only issue is the temps, I say get an after market cooler, though I'm not sure what that would do to that nice double life time warranty ^_^. Anyway, a Radeon 5770 would be faster and run cooler. As far as temps the Sapphire Vapor-X Radeon 5770 would be best, followed by the 5770 with the shrouded cooler (launch reference card), followed by the now standard 5770 with the weaker cooler that is also used on the 5750. A 5770 would generally be faster than a 9800GTX+ (aka GTS 250) and even the version with the weaker cooler should have better temps than your 9800GT.
After considering my options, I've decided to keep the XFX 9800GT and add the 2GB of RAM and Windows 7 64bit. Thanks cpt_taco for that bit of common sense . Also, thank you jay for the outstanding info on the newest cards. Helped me to understand a lot of what ATI has to offer.