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Upgrade Questions

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January 19, 2010 11:28:49 AM

Hey everyone,

Currently I have a Sapphire HD 4850 running in my rig, and it has been having some heat issues. Since I was lazy and didn't do much about, I'm pretty sure I damaged it. Sometimes when I play WoW, the monitor will go off as if going to sleep and requires a hard reset to bring it back (funny enough though, I'm able to run more demanding games and have no issues). My card is idling at ~80c and under load ~95-97c. I have good airflow and everything, I think the fans just aren't cutting it. Last night my graphics display got pretty messed up. I'm assuming the GPU is on it's way out the door. I figured if I needed to replace it, I was going to upgrade. So I had a few questions.

1)Is it worth going from a 4850 to a 5770 (DX11) or should I go to a 4890 (can't afford a 5850).

2)The only 4890 I can find is XFX, any opinions on this manufacturer? I usually purchase Sapphire cards, but I wanted to get it from newegg.

3)I have an older CPU Athlon 64 X2 5400+, will this bottleneck me with anything higher than a 4850? Should I not bother the upgrade at all, and just get a new 4850 with a better cooling solution?

I'd appreciate any and all help you guys can give me. Thanks!

More about : upgrade questions

a c 376 U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 11:42:25 AM

If your resolution is under 1920x1080 I'd just get the HD5770 as it should be great for anything below that and offers DX11, eyefinity, low heat/power consumption, ect while the HD4890 does not. The HD5770 is about 25% faster than the HD4850, and the HD4890 is about 15% faster than the HD5770. Also that processor is ok but not great and will bottleneck either of these cards in some games, especially at lower resolution, but others will be fine. If it's an AM2 board consider upgrading if you can.
a b U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 12:04:03 PM

RADEON 5770 will be good for you
You will feel a significant performance boost on 5770

In future add another one and you will get the performance close to or on-par with $400 5870

And 5770 is more power efficient

It will perform great upto 1920x1200

Related resources
a b U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 12:46:53 PM

well you will get some cpu bottlenecks with 5770 or 4890...but still its worth upgrading to a 5770....Although 4890 is more powerful than a 5770 still the dx11 and lower power consumption makes it a good choice ...
a c 140 U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 12:49:03 PM

1) Sure it is. The 5770 doesn't consume much power and is a good card. It will give you a nice increase over yout 4850.

2)XFX is a VERY good brand. They are great to deal with on support issues and have a double lifetime warranty (double meaning if you sell the card you can transfer the warranty once)

3)You will see a bottleneck, but you will still get great performance.

My Questions:
- What games do you play?
- What PSU do you have?
- What resolution do you run at?

My Thoughts:
- The 5770 is a nice lowerend gaming card, its easy on the PSU as well. However, unless you are limited by your PSU or really want DX11, I would go with a 4890 or OCed GTX260.
- I would try and repaste your 4850 cooler first. Get some Thermal Paste, take off the cooler, clean it with cotton swap and alcohol. Take ridged piece of plastic and spread a VERY thin layer on the GPU and put the cooler back on. Sometimes the factory paste gets dry or was never really installed correctly.

These would be my choices for you:
XFX 4890: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Gigabyte GTX 260 OC (will see about the same or better performance as a GTX 275): http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
January 19, 2010 12:55:07 PM

Thanks for the help. I guess I forgot to mention, I use a 24'' monitor at 1920x1080 resolution. Will the 5770 allow me to get that? Also, I heard that due to the lower power consumption, the 5770 is actually about on par with the 4850.

I'm not looking to upgrade the entire computer at this point, and I don't want to have to replace the motherboard and processor since I'm a bit strapped on cash. I just figured if I had to replace the old 4850, I'd go a step up instead of spending $100 for the same card.

For the questions above:

1)I play WoW, Arkham Asylum, Civ IV, Bioshock, select FPSs, mostly RPGS though. Dragon age, etc...
2)can't remember the brand off the top of my head, but I have a 750w PSU.
3) I run at 1920x1080.

thanks again

a b U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 1:07:16 PM

It will run almost every game upto 1920x1200

You won't have any problems
WOW, with 750W PSU you can add another 5770.

It'll play all your desired games
only few like CRYSIS on 1680x1050
and
all other at 1920x1200


If you are tight on the budget for now, I say you wait some time, arrange some more money, buy 5770 and you will feel a significant performance boost from 4850


Good Luck
a c 140 U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 1:43:03 PM

1) I would try and fix your current 4850. Repaste the cooler. What model is it?
2)At that resolution you don't want a replacement for the 4850 if you have to buy something, you will want to upgrade and put the money to better use. (well at least I would)
3) If you are heavy into playing Batman, I would recommend the GTX 260 OC version i mentioned. Batman is HEAVY I mean HEAVY on PhysiX and only Nvidia cards can play it with that eye candy. ATI cards, even the highest models do not have PhysX support and have to play with no Physx and from what I hear its not that pretty compared to with.

Here is a review for the 5770/5750 cards. There are other pages that I would review, but in particular for Batman, read this one: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-5770,2446...
January 19, 2010 3:45:07 PM

I have the sapphire 4850 512mb. It is the single slot card, and truth be told, I don't know much more about the specs. It was one of the first models of the 4850 and its a little over a year old.

I've repasted the cooler, and cleaned out the fans, but the problem persists. What puzzles me, is that I can run a stress test like furmark, for over an hour, and the card goes up to 105-108c but doesn't shut down, but after a while in WoW things get wacky.

I cannot put the blame on anything else but the video card, because it seems everything else checks out. The power supply voltages are regular, the HDD passes all its tests and so does the memory. Unless the mobo itself is bad, I really don't know of any other solutions and even though I'm not a WoW addict, (only a few hours a day) when you spend an hour of that continually rebooting, it loses a lot of its fun. I thought about buying an aftermarket cooler for the card I have, but I don't know if that will fix the problem, and being a college student I don't like throwing money at problems it may not fix.
a c 140 U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 4:06:18 PM

Different games use the GPU in different ways. I've heard this before with GPU issues, I've been there to, but mostly when OCing. It is stable until I update a game or try a new one.

The single slot coolers were just a bad idea, they don't most air like they need to. I am assuming it is out of warranty to. I believe it is a 2 year warranty. You can always try to unlock the card in the ATI CCC Overdrive utility and under clock it a little until it runs stable. Did you update your drivers?
January 19, 2010 5:43:25 PM

Latest drivers yeah.

I know this isn't likely the best place to ask this next question, but since we're on the topic, what would you suggest for a new build for ~$1000? That is like my maximum budget, and I wouldn't mind trying to build a new computer for myself. That way the girlfriend can have my current rig, and she'd just get herself a new video card. I think I could even put in an old x1950 pro that I have.

I have a WD Caviar Black HDD, so I wouldn't need one of those. I also want a nice case with good airflow. I was told the Antec 900-2?
a c 376 U Graphics card
January 19, 2010 10:56:47 PM

You can build a very nice system for $1k although you don't need to spend quite that much. With that much money you should get an HD5850 for now. It will be very bottlenecked by your current processor but it's the right choice for that budget/monitor on the new computer.
As for the new system itself I would recommend either an i5(lynnfield) or Phenom II x4 based system. I would probably go for the Phenom II myself as the performance difference, especially for gaming, doesn't make the price difference worth it IMO but you budget should allow for either.
This CPU/motherboard combo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
and this ram
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
plus this HD5850/PSU combo;
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
Would be a good combination of core components for $650ish and leave plenty for a good case, good cooler for OCing the CPU, dvd burner, another HD, ect. You can swap out the 750w into the new build if you want although the one in that combo should be fine.
!