Would A 5970 Work Well With My System? Also... What Is Resolution?

i am just getting into computer gaming, i'm used to playing games on my Xbox 360 on my 42 inch LCD, which i also use as a computer monitor, i use a wireless mouse/keyboard from my sofa and use my arm rest as a mouse mat.

I have noticed that games don't look as a impressive on a large high resolution tv, which is one of the main reasons i am interested in pc gaming, the graphical quality being better.

My present system is a Q6600, 2 GB DDR2 Ram, 8800GT, MSI G31M3 Mobo ,600 Watt PSU.

The motherboard has no ability to change CPU voltage or perform other overclocking operations sadly, i've considered purchasing a new one.

What i really want is to be able to play Crysis Wars online with no skipping on max settings.

It's come to my awareness that resolution has something to do with graphical quality.

If resolution is taken to mean number of pixels diplayed, then i can see that this makes sense.

What has thrown me off a little, is that i have always associated resolution with the size of windows explorer and desktop, i figured if i set the resolution on games higher it would make things harder to see.

I haven't tested this out, but maybe someone could clear up this matter for me.

My motherboard has a single Pci-e slot, so it seems if i don't want to buy a new motherboard the ATI 5970 would be the best choice and going by this benchmark chart i found through google;


It performs similarly to 2 x 5870 Crossfired.

This seems a better option than purchasing two crossfired cards, as it would save me money by not having to replace my motherboard and also, i have observed the 5970 would be cheaper than two 5870 cards.

According to the benchmark report above, this card alone is still not capable of enabling a playable experience at crysis's highest possible resolutions.

I still don't really understand what the deal with resolution is so i'm not really not sure what significance this has.

I'm intrigued by the idea of possibly crossfiring two 5970's;

"The "All Resolutions" performance summary graph simply doesn't do justice as HD 5970 CrossFire gets irrelevant, and CPU-limited in lower resolutions. 2560x1600 seems to be the only resolution where having a pair of these will allow you to splurge on eye-candy like never before."


This might enable me to play crysis at the highest possible resolution, but ofcourse at this point i'd be looking at replacing my motherboard and furthermore, according to what's written above, quite possibly my processor aswell.

It's an upgrade path i could think about.

Would a 5970 work well with my system?

And also, could someone please explain to me what the importance of resolution is and what differences one might expect from the resolutions utilised for testing in the above benchmark comparison.


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  1. WoW...

    Anyways welcome to THG =)

    Ok, first off you will need a faster CPU if you are even thinking of the 5970. You might be able to overclock the CPU and get a bit more performance but if you are thinking about aquiring a 5970 you should also be looking at a motherboard/cpu replacement since this can be purchased for 200.00$ or less.

    A 2.4Ghz quad is not going to cut it when paired with a 5970. The 5970 will just bottleneck that CPU, you will need at least 3.2Ghz or better if you want that 5970 to keep up with the rest of your system.

    If you want high detail/crisp image opt for an LCD monitor, if you can care less for streched pixels then an LCD TV will do just fine =). Personally I cannot play any PC game on an LCD TV because regardless of the GPU that is used it always looks the same as my PS3/360 soo there is no point in spending that much money on a GPU if the visuals will remain the same.
  2. If your PSU is a 600W Corsair, you're fine. Otherwise, you'll need a PSU upgrade.

    Your CPU will bottleneck your card. You'll need a Q8400/Q9550 heavily overclocked.

    Resolution is the amount of pixels on the screen. More pixels = Smaller icons compensated by a bigger monitor.

    17'' = 1024x768
    18-21'' = 1280x1024

    Wide screen

    17-19'' = 1440x920 (something like that)
    20-22'' = 1650x1080
    23-24'' = 1920x1080
    25+'' = 2560x1650
  3. Okay, thanks guys.

    I've read about people overclocking Q6600 to 3.6 air cooled although somewhere between 3.0 and 3.6 might be more likely, is it not a kind of luck of the draw type deal with CPU's as to how well they overclock?

    If i got a new motherboard, that allowed overclocking, could i make do with the Q6600?

    How much bottlenecking would we be talking about?

    Enough to make it pointless to get a 5970 and instead go for a 5870?

    I just thought of something, my TV is an LG LH3000 which has a resolution of 1920 x 1080. Considering this, would having a game resolution of anything above this be able to be displayed?

    I understand that in windows smaller icons is the effect higher resolution has.

    I am wondering what the effect is in games, greater field of vision? Smaller characters and enviromental details etc... ?

    Crysis definitely looks alot more impressive than MW2 or what i recently bought and returned(due to how terrible graphics looks on a tv my size) BFBC2(i wonder if the pc version would be any better?).

    An easy fix for stretch pixels, if it presents itself a problem, is to just move your TV further away ofcourse.

    Perhaps i'm getting very confused here, but shouldn't there be no difference between pixel display quality between LCD monitors and LCD tv's if the resolution diplay capabilities are the same, relative to how far away the screen is?

    This is my PSU;


    I believe that the ampage is the most significant factor beyond the wattage rating and i think at the time i ensured that the ampage output was of high standard, i can't really recall, would it do the job?

    You have both suggested replacing my processor and therefore my motherboard would also have to be replaced also, if i was to take your advice, i live in the UK, what is the cheapest source for new computer components that might be availible to me?

    Thanks for the welcome and the advice,

  4. Your motherboard will not have to be replaced if you buy a Q9550, neither will you have to Overclock.
    Otherwise, you could buy a decent cooler and a new motherboard.
    Also, you need a new PSU. One with 3rails @ 15A+Each or preferably a single 55A rail, and 2-6pin PCI-E connectors.
    2GB more RAM wouldn't hurt either.
  5. The farther away you sit from the TV the less you will notice the streched pixels. At 1920 x 1080 you will be fine with a single 5970. It seems that you want to invest $$$ just for Crysis, so just FYI all the other games will play maxed out with more than enough frames regardless of the eye-candy.

    Your board is on the low end, you can try overclocking your CPU but you must invest in an aftermarket cooler first. This can be purchased for around 35/40.00$.

    I would opt for a more powerfull PSU, your PSU might power it up fine but you might be pushing it.

    ATI Radeon™ HD 5970 System Requirements :

    * PCI Express® based PC is required with one X16 lane graphics slot available on the motherboard
    * 650 Watt or greater power supply one 75W 6-pin and one 150W 8-pin PCI Express® power connectors recommended (850 Watt with two 75W 6-pin and two 150W 8-pin connectors for ATI CrossFireX™ technology in dual mode)
    * Certified power supplies are recommended. Refer to http://ati.amd.com/certifiedPSU for a list of certified products
    * Minimum 1GB of system memory
    * Installation software requires CD-ROM drive
    * DVD playback requires DVD drive
    * Blu-ray™ playback requires Blu-ray drive
    * For an ATI CrossFireX™ system, a second ATI Radeon™ HD 5970 graphics card, an ATI CrossFireX Ready motherboard and one ATI CrossFireX Bridge Interconnect cable per graphics card (included) are required
  6. Your dot pitch on the 42 inch TV is 0.4843mm, compare that to a 24 inch monitor which has a dot pitch of 0.2767mm and you will understand why you need to sit a heck of a lot further away from the Tv to get the same amount of crispness and sharpness from the tv as that of the monitor.

    I would prefer the monitor over the tv for gaming any day, i have a 48 in panasonic 1920 x 1080 and simply cannot game on it with the PC, just dont enjoy it as much but then I am not a console gamer.

    Personally, Id go 5850 and buy a nice monitor with the change that you were going to spend on the 5970 and OC that Q6600 as best you can!
  7. Crysis is an overly ambitious game in terms of graphics. It didn't sell as well as Crytek was hoping because the system requires were and still is insane in order to get the best graphics quality. Crysis is an exception, not the rule. I would expect Crysis 2 will be less demanding than Crysis.

    I would say that a HD 5970 with your Q6600 CPU you will probably have a 10% - 15% bottleneck compared to a i7-920 CPU both at stock speed.

    Personally I wouldn't go higher than a HD 5870. In actuality I have a HD 5850 pushing 1920 x 1200 resolution.
  8. Hey, thanks again guys.

    Moricon is that some pc gamer bias i sense :P

    Monitors are better than TV's, Keyboard and Mouse is superior to gamepads etc... (lol)

    I understand now that the dot pitch scaling between similar resolution screens at distances which would present them to occupy similar percentage field of vision, does not result in equal cripsness and sharpness as you put it. (I think thats what your saying?)

    I actually already have a monitor, 20 inch and higher resolution than my tv, but i've just offered to give it to my auntie as a gift, i don't really feel the need for a monitor.

    Sure it would be easier to play at a desktop in front of a monitor, but i'm getting used to pc gaming and console gaming in the position.

    I just want to make the most of my TV, if anything i'd splash out on a new TV, one with a greater dot pitch, know of any? (I would need about twice my curent resolution to match monitor qulity, is that correct?)


    So am i right in saying, having a higher resolution than 1980x1080 would be pointless, because my TV simply can't display resoltuions higher than this and there would be no graphical benefit in trying to run the game at a higher resolution than this?

    The cooler is already aftermarket, i had it left over from when i overclocked a Dual Core processor on my old computer.

    I might just try it out on my PSU first, is there any risk of damaging my system by making an attempt with it?


    I think i am going to go for the motherboard option first, wing it with my current cooler and PSU, overlock the Q6600.

    On the Ram front, i was under the impression it makes little to no difference with gaming applications.

    I see all the time on task manager, "Physical Memory Usage", which never seems to be fully taxed. Perhaps i'm mistaken?

    Thanks again guys, you've been a tremendous help :)
  9. You are going to kill yourself with a PSU of that size.
  10. jaguarskx said:
    Crysis is an overly ambitious game in terms of graphics. It didn't sell as well as Crytek was hoping because the system requires were and still is insane in order to get the best graphics quality. Crysis is an exception, not the rule. I would expect Crysis 2 will be less demanding than Crysis.

    I would say that a HD 5970 with your Q6600 CPU you will probably have a 10% - 15% bottleneck compared to a i7-920 CPU both at stock speed.

    Personally I wouldn't go higher than a HD 5870. In actuality I have a HD 5850 pushing 1920 x 1200 resolution.

    How well would a 10-15% bottleneck be alleviated by overclocking?

    And would the 5970 be bottlenecked enough to make it worse than a 5870?

    I would really like a system that can help me be competitive online, at present, anytime i am engaged in a firefight, or atleast very often and certainly when there are many players around, my fps drops dramatically, the game skips etc...

    I'm very certain the phenomenon i'm experiencing is not lag, i'm kinda fed up of getting owned by guys with good systems that don't seem to be suffering such problems.

    I personally hope the original Crysis will experience a renaisance of appreciation once Crysis 2 is released and hardware that can run the original is more widespread, as you said, i think it's unlikely crysis 2 will be any better if even on par with the orginal.

    Hopefully Crysis 2 doesn't also end up too much of a console port, with less pc orientated development as it's the one game that has really drawn me away from consoles. In anycase i'll still have the orgininal to play, perhaps Crysis 3 would be more something to look forwards to :)

    It seems since Crysis no-one has really tried to push the envelope on what's graphically possible, perhaps crysis was ahead of it's time and as you said consequently suffered in sales.

    Please answer this for me, increasing game resolution has the effect of making the game look smaller, this can make it look more impressive, as you cna get closer to the screen viewing less pixelation.

    However, as my Ttv, has a 1980x1080 resolution, it's impossible to set the resolution higher (or? it would "zoom out" without any increase in pixelation quality?).

    Thanks again!
  11. shadow187 said:
    You are going to kill yourself with a PSU of that size.

    Are you not perhaps being a tad dramatic? :p

    Well if my life is in danger, i'll defintely opt for a more powerful one. ;)

    (Seriously if it doesn't work or performance is hampered in anyway i would naturally buy a better one, as i said, if i don't get the performance i'm satisfied with i would overhaul the entire system, thanks for making my options clearer.)
  12. I'm going to be honest here, this is what I would invest in :

    New Motherboard
    New CPU
    Set of 2x 2Gb or 3x 2Gb (depending on board)

    and if that is not an option then :

    New board
    Two extra Gb's of RAM
  13. OvrClkr said:
    I'm going to be honest here, this is what I would invest in :

    New Motherboard
    New CPU
    Set of 2x 2Gb or 3x 2Gb (depending on board)

    and if that is not an option then :

    New board
    Two extra Gb's of RAM

    I've decided to go for the 5870...

    Firstly because i can't seem to find anywhere that is shipping these to the UK for less than £600.

    Secondly because even if i ordered one of these it would take a while to get here and i want it now :p.

    That said i can't seem to find a 5870 in stock for less than £300, but atleast i'll be able to get next day delivery.

    I'll try the 5870, if it's satisfactory, great, if not i'll either keep it overhaul and go Xfire or sell it overhaul and go for a 5970.


    Thanks again.

    I still left a few questions littered in this thread, if anyone wouldn't mind answering them for me...

  14. It is impossible for your TV to display a higher resolution than 1920x1080. Thats the number of pixels (dots) on the screen, anything higher would require more pixels.

    A desktop icon appear smaller as you increase your TV resolution because it is always 60x60 pixels. By increasing the resolution of your TV, the icon would still occupy a 60x60 pixel square but would look sharper because the detail is displayed over a smaller area.

    If you double the resolution in a game a 60x60 picture would become a 120x120 picture over the same surface area. The extra pixels would be filled in with more detail and color. So things look more sharp and chrisp. You won't have a bigger field of vision unfortunately but things look better.
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