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Keep 4870 for now, or upgrade?

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January 13, 2010 7:09:53 PM

I've been a longtime reader of the forums, and it's been a great source of advice on many topics.
I thought I would try to take advantage of the community's knowledge and expertise by asking a question.

Should I stick with my current graphics card--an XFX 4870 1GB--or should I upgrade to a 5770?

The reason I didn't include a 5850 or 5870 is that they are a little over my budget right now.
I am getting ready to do a new budget gaming build with the following components:

Intel Core i5 CPU--$199
Corsair 650 Watt PSU--$99
4GB Corsair DDR3 1600 RAM--$93
500GB Samsung Spintpoint F3 hard drive--$55
GIGABYTE GA-P55-UD3L LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard--$104
Rosewill Destroyer ATX case--$59.95

I got all these components, plus Windows 7 OEM, a disk drive, and an extra case fan for $738 shipped.
I had planned on only spending $700, but this was the best I could do without sacrificing on quality components.
I probably could have gotten by with the 450 watt Corsair PSU for a single GPU setup, but I wanted to have that extra wattage cushion in case I decide to crossfire/upgrade in the future.

I already have a 23" ASUS 1080p monitor, and I usually game at 1680x1050 resolutions.
My games of interest are basically PC racing sims like rFactor, GTREvo, GTR2, iRacing, etc.
I was really torn about going with a cheaper/lower performance CPU/Mobo setup such as an AM3/Athlon IIx4 630 so I could switch the 4870 for a 5770, but I decided to go with the i5/1156 platform.

Should I be thinking about getting rid of the 4870 and using the money to get a 5770?
Or, am I correct in thinking that the 4870 is currently on par with/slightly better than the 5770 right now in terms of gaming? Will the 4870 be good enough at 1650x1080 for a while longer paired with the i5?

The one thing I don't like about the 4870 is that it runs hot. In my old HP case, it would idle at 62-65c
and get up to around 83c under load (with v-sync off) and 75c under load with vsync on. I'm hoping that with the new case and better airflow, it will bring my GPU temps down a little with the 4870.
I should get these parts tomorrow, and I'm looking forward to the upgrade. I was previously running on a HP/E5200 setup with the 4870, and I was unable to OC due to the HP mobo limitations.

Any advice you could give regarding a 4870 vs. 5770 in my case would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

More about : 4870 upgrade

January 13, 2010 7:14:31 PM

the 4870 is almost the same performance wise with the 5770 (faster in some games slower in others but always very close) so upgrading it would be pointless (at least until more DX11 games are released or if the power usage is important to you) - so save the $ and hopefully by that the time you need to upgrade it you'll have enough to get the 5870 or dual 5770's to run in crossfire.
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January 13, 2010 10:01:19 PM

A 5770 is not really an upgrade to a 4870 right now. Stick with the 4870.
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January 14, 2010 5:08:06 AM

Thanks for the input guys. I think I am going to stick with the 4870 a while longer.
I guess I was just second guessing myself a little, and needed a little feedback to determine if I was making the right move. I think the next upgrade I will look at down the road is a 5850 GPU. Hopefully, in a few months, the price will drop just a little.

Hopefully the new case will help drop the temps on that 4870 too. That would be nice. I know they are made to run a little hot, but I just don't feel comfortable with it hitting such high temps under load.
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January 14, 2010 5:17:54 AM

Got it...sell your 4870 on eBay and go to:

http://www.techbargains.com/product/5850

and use the code 1SC0KPSK$BN10J on Dell.com (it'll direct you there) and get yourself a 5850 for what will be probably $100 total out of your pocket (5850 is $251.99 right now, plenty in stock). I bought one last night, said it'll be here by the 18th.

BAM! Problem solved.
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January 14, 2010 5:46:47 AM

mirzai_m said:
Got it...sell your 4870 on eBay and go to:

http://www.techbargains.com/product/5850

and use the code 1SC0KPSK$BN10J on Dell.com (it'll direct you there) and get yourself a 5850 for what will be probably $100 total out of your pocket (5850 is $251.99 right now, plenty in stock). I bought one last night, said it'll be here by the 18th.

BAM! Problem solved.


That's a great deal, no doubt about it, but I don't think I can do it right now.
Thanks for pointing it out though, maybe someone else will jump on it.
I already feel a little guilty for going overbudget on my build. I think I'll stick with the 4870
for a few more months anyway, and save up for that 5850.
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January 14, 2010 6:09:54 AM

Hahaha ditto on the guilt. I'm selling this to my wife as a necessity to make better videos of the kids :) 
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January 14, 2010 3:59:55 PM

The question I'd have to ask is why get a 5770 over a 4870 ?

1. Performance ? The 4870 is about 10% faster than the 5770, so that's a no..

2. DX11 ? - Well that's a toss up....if you wanna play at your monitor's native resolution, from what we've seen so far (Dirt2), the 5770 can't do that under DX11....if you gonna settle for lower resolutions, then that could be a plus.

3. Power Savings - The 5770 uses less power so if you pay big $$ for power, then the 5770 would save a buck or 2 a month on your energy bill.

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January 21, 2010 2:25:32 AM

Best answer selected by cpp214.
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