Overkill for a Q9550?

Hi all!

Was just wondering if I could get some feedback on where to draw the line on a card for a Q9550. Do not want to spend extra money on a card that will bottleneck the CPU.

I was thinking 5850 or 5870. The latter if I got the cash. Im not sure If I should wait to see what Fermi brings us. I'm expecting bloated prices and cards that run too hot.

Right Now I have a 9800 GT akimbo OC'd to 675/2005mhz. It actually isnt that bad. I get 20-40 fps on COD waw max settings @1920X1200. But i'm looking to upgrade for coming titles like BFBC2 and the fabled COD slated for late this year.

Any experience/insight would be greatly appreciated!

FYI: I do not have a board that supports SLI/CF and my system is only 16 months old, so I can't justify upgrading to the new platforms :(

Thanks in advance!

RM
24 answers Last reply
More about overkill q9550
  1. either will work and give great results with the Q9550

    i would go for the 5870 if i were you
  2. ^+1

    9550 is a strong CPU, even at stock speeds can feed (and not limit) most any single card. OCing will raise overall performance, but probably not needed for some good times with a strong card.
  3. ^ actually ocing is needed since the release of gta iv. i have a q9550 (and a gtx 260) and i get ~ 20 fps w/ gta iv on 1680x1050 and max settings. i havent oced yet and i plan to after i get a nice cooler
    with most other games, thou, the q9550 is still a very capable cpu and can handle any card u throw at it.
  4. For gaming, not much will beat a C2Q; at that point, the CPU isn't going to be the bottleneck.
  5. Yeah. Just get the HD5850 however. The performance difference(and more) can be made up through overclocking.
  6. peyman_tp said:
    ^ actually ocing is needed since the release of gta iv. i have a q9550 (and a gtx 260) and i get ~ 20 fps w/ gta iv on 1680x1050 and max settings. i havent oced yet and i plan to after i get a nice cooler
    with most other games, thou, the q9550 is still a very capable cpu and can handle any card u throw at it.


    GTAIV is a piss-poor console port that drags EVERY system down, and does NOT perform to the specs needed just to make playable. It is not a title that should ever be used for GPU/CPU balance discussions.
  7. Thanks for your replies!!!

    Even though I would love to drop a new board in with 2x 5870's and get a bigger PSU, Price is a bit of a concern. Though the benchmarks show a significant increase in performance for the 5870, If the 5850 can be OC'd to match it that would be awesome! Normally I wouldn't care but I only got my card in sep. 2008, and it was $210. Seems like such a waste :(

    Thanks again to everyone!

    RM
  8. The 5850 is a great overclocker, got mine at 925/1130 which isn't bad vs the 5870's 850/1200.

    Bare in mind clock speeds arent the only difference, The 5870 has 160 more SP's (1440 for the 5850 and 1600 for the 5870) But is that really worth the extra cost?
  9. 10% more SPs for 35% higher price. Hmm. I can see the allure (in having the top shelf goods) but can also see how an OC'd 5850 is barely a comprimise. Cheers~!
  10. No freakin' worries buddy
  11. Hrrm.. added question:

    Could/Should? I use the 9800 as a PhysX card?

    You guys rock, thanks!

    RM
  12. Thats up to you, It will use more power, and will increase the heat output, but it will add performance in some games, Why not try it out and see if the pro's out weight the con's
  13. I see you have a Antec TruePower 550W, Doubt thats enough power for a 5850/5870 + 9800
  14. 5850 or 5870?

    depends on how much u wanna spend.

    got the $$$ and u want the bragging rights, go for the 5870. otherwise, a 5850 should b more than enough.

    im sure u won't b disappointed either way. gd luck.
  15. I'd say go for the 5850 just because of the price difference. That ought to be plenty for any game that comes out in the foreseeable future.

    Then, instead of dropping another $100 on a second card for PhysX, you can take all the money you saved and buy a PS3 and Batman: Arkham Asylum, since that's the only game that uses PhysX anyway.
  16. capt_taco said:
    since that's the only game that uses PhysX anyway.

    no, there are quite a few others and whether they are worth playing or not is debatable but there are more than just the one.
  17. From my limited time with running a 9600GSO for physics with my 4870, It was neat, but dropped my FPS so far as to make it useless. Where I would keep a steady 70fps without PhysX, enabled, it would stick steady in the mid 20s. Sure, certain things are prettier, but the loss of the buttery smooth framerate wasn't worth it for me. I did all of my testing on Batman AA, since it is arguably the heaviest application of PhysX out there.


    PS: Nice sig mousemonkey, Geekologie much?
  18. Mousemonkey said:
    no, there are quite a few others and whether they are worth playing or not is debatable but there are more than just the one.


    I know that; I just meant it's about the only widely popular game where PhysX is very important. Probably a better way of putting it would have been: I don't see the point of paying extra for a PhysX card because it's not really a big deal right now, and it's going to remain that way until someone comes out with a standard that works with both brands.
  19. JofaMang said:
    I did all of my testing on Batman AA, since it is arguably the heaviest application of PhysX out there.


    It seemed more noticeable in Darkest of Days to me tbh, but then I think both games aren't worth a toss but that's just my opinion.

    JofaMang said:
    PS: Nice sig mousemonkey, Geekologie much?

    Geek-a-what?? :lol:

    capt_taco said:
    I know that; I just meant it's about the only widely popular game where PhysX is very important. Probably a better way of putting it would have been: I don't see the point of paying extra for a PhysX card because it's not really a big deal right now, and it's going to remain that way until someone comes out with a standard that works with both brands.


    Agreed.
  20. The first place I saw that picture of the RL tron cycle was on a hilarious tech/nerd blog called Geekologie. I realise the internet is a big place, but thought you may have seen it there as well.
  21. JofaMang said:
    The first place I saw that picture of the RL tron cycle was on a hilarious tech/nerd blog called Geekologie. I realise the internet is a big place, but thought you may have seen it there as well.

    Nah, I was looking at the IMDB and came across a possible release date for Tron II.
  22. I had my 5850 OCed to 900Mhz core, and 4x1200Mhz memory at only 1.1V... stable, tested for several hours with FurMark and Unigine Heaven to ensure stability. I stopped at 900MHz and 1.1V, because I was getting over 100FPS in most of the games I enjoy anyway, and went back to stock settings for reduced fan noise. Getting to 900MHz at only 1.1V isn't typical tho, since I have buddies who had to raise voltage to 1.15V to hit just under 900... but, most folks can easily hit a 1GHz core with the stock cooling, and a voltage setting near 1.2V.
    -Its notable that MSI and Asus brands have BIOS that support voltage changes. Other cards may need to have the BIOS flashed with an MSI or Asus version, depending on the tool you use to tweak the voltage...

    Anyway, from what I've seen on the net an OCed 5850 vs an OCed 5870, will only have about a 5% performance difference... making the 5850 a strong choice if you go that route. Fan noise was a bit too much for me though.

    Also, glad to see people agree with me about GTAIV. I slammed GTA in a recent News article, and got thumb downs by the uninformed... but, man, that game's terrible from a technical standpoint... totally agree that it shouldn't be mentioned as a reference point when someone's trying to build a balanced system. Neither should Crysis for that matter, though. Crysis and GTA seem to represent the extremes for GPU and CPU bottlenecks, as well as poorly done optimization in the game engine.
  23. ok heres a question lol!

    on the 5870:

    Vapor-x or not?

    :P
  24. JofaMang said:
    GTAIV is a piss-poor console port that drags EVERY system down, and does NOT perform to the specs needed just to make playable. It is not a title that should ever be used for GPU/CPU balance discussions.

    completely agree. however, there are a lot of people who want to play this game and im just pointing out that a stock q9550 isn't going to cut it
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