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5850 vs 4xxx Cards, and DX9 vs DX11 In General

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May 11, 2010 7:16:00 AM

Hello everyone, my old HIS 4770 card has broken and I'm upgrading to a new card. As I'm also getting a new monitor, I will be gaming at 1080p and I'm not sure which video card to buy. Unfortunately in Canada Nvidia cards are a lot more expensive than in the US, so I'm stuck with ATI cards. As I was hoping to get a powerful higher end card to run games at a high resolution with high details, the 5850 seemed like a good choice. What worries me is I use Windows XP and thus dx9 not dx11, and I'm wondering how to proceed in the future.

For reference my other specs are:
Phenom II X2 550 (3.16Ghz)
Antec Earthwatts 500W PSU
3.33 Gb RAM

To buy the 5850 would cost $300, but what caught my eye is the 4890 which is $200 and seems to be almost as powerful but uses dx10. The advantage the 5000 series seem to have is less power consumption and heat, I was wondering how significant you feel the power savings of the 5850 over the 4890 is compared to the price. The 5850 seems to use about 25% less power when idle, and though I play games the computer won't be under heavy load most of the time as it's used by my family as well.

I'm a bit worried as I don't want to buy another card for a long time, I'd hate to buy a $200 4890 now and have to buy another $200 card in a year and a half, I guess it really depends on how common dx11 only games will be in the future. I'm also curious on opinions on Windows 7 and whether it's worth upgrading from XP.

Right now I'm leaning towards the 5850. Is it too powerful for my processor anyway? Do you think it would be viable to buy the 5850 now and stick with XP, and buy Windows 7 in the future when DX11 is required for many games, or will by that time I'll need a better computer anyway? With that in mind is it just better to get a powerful but cheaper last gen card? Are there any good higher end cards for a reasonable price you would recommend? I appreciate any opinions.

Thanks!
May 11, 2010 7:43:29 AM

DX 9 v.s DX 10


DX 10 v.s DX 11


I hope this helps you out and to figure out the difference.

*CHEERS*
a c 376 U Graphics card
May 11, 2010 7:52:51 AM

If you don't plan to buy a new card for a long time like you say then I'd definitely go for the HD5850. Your processor isn't great but it's still capable and if your motherboard can handle that processor it can also handle Phenom II x4s if it becomes and issue as more games start to take advantage of quad core processors.
As for power usage you got the numbers wrong. The HD5850 actually uses about 1/3rd the power of the HD4890 at idle and about 40w less during gaming. As for performance the HD5850 is about 25% faster at stock at your new resolution but where the card really shines is with overclocking. Unlike most cards the HD5850 allows for the core voltage to be modified which lets you put the speed of the core up in the 1000-1100mhz range. That is a 40-50% overclock, which is almost unheard of and well past the performance of an HD5870 at stock.
The cards DX11 capabilities wont matter until you upgrade from XP. It will be a long while before you can't actually play games in DX9 but planning on an upgrade to win7 is certainly a good idea for the future. There are still less than 10 games that use DX11 at all right now and all of them are still fully playable in DX9, you just wont be able to access some advanced graphical options to make the games look better.
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May 11, 2010 7:55:47 AM

Your CPU is fine for any GPU as long as you have a PCI Express 16 slot, Which I take it you have one cause you had an old graphics card that would require that. I would recommend upgrading to Windows 7. As for the graphics card I would get one from:

newegg.ca

I found you some good cards!

POWERCOLOR 5830 Radeon HD 5830 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 CrossFireX Support Video Card w/ Eyefinity OC at 825MHz, Eyefinity ready

Cost: 235.00

Link: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...



a c 376 U Graphics card
May 11, 2010 8:08:41 AM

The HD5830 isn't worth it at that price, it's slightly weaker than the HD4890. He also said he wouldn't want to have to buy another $200 if he gets the HD4890 so I don't see why the HD4890 crossfire chart is relevant.
Another option could be an HD5770 and another later in crossfire but we would need to know more about the motherboard to know if that is a possibility.
May 11, 2010 8:15:03 AM

jyjjy said:
The HD5830 isn't worth it at that price, it's slightly weaker than the HD4890. He also said he wouldn't want to have to buy another $200 if he gets the HD4890 so I don't see why the HD4890 crossfire chart is relevant.
Another option could be an HD5770 and another later in crossfire but we would need to know more about the motherboard to know if that is a possibility.


If I was him I would just do the 5850 if he has the money for it. I mean its pretty future proof and its worth the money, I spent so much on my two 8800Ultras when they came out and let me tell you it was so so so worth it!


I used the chart as a reference to say don't buy the 4890 its not worth it.
a b U Graphics card
May 11, 2010 8:19:36 AM

the 5850 is also dead silent, and the 4890 is one of the most horribly loud cards i have ever owned.

i would get the 5850 hands down, Dx11 will be a big deal.
May 11, 2010 8:27:45 AM

welshmousepk said:
the 5850 is also dead silent, and the 4890 is one of the most horribly loud cards i have ever owned.

i would get the 5850 hands down, Dx11 will be a big deal.


*CHEERS* DX11 FTW!!!!
May 12, 2010 1:48:04 AM

Thanks for the quick replies! Your advice has convinced me 5850 is the best choice. I have looked at the 5770 and 5830 but the lackluster reviews scared me away. I was thinking of going for the sapphire version of the 5850.
http://www.bewawa.com/sapphire-video-card-hd-5850-1gb-d...
I assume it would come with drivers for xp 32-bit, can anyone confirm this?
a b U Graphics card
May 12, 2010 2:29:39 AM

i assume so, but if not they can be easily DLd from the ATI website.
a c 376 U Graphics card
May 12, 2010 6:18:35 AM

The driver disc should always be ignored. Just get the latest catalyst control center from the AMD website.
BTW you wont actually be able to use the DX11 compatibility of the card until you upgrade from XP.
May 12, 2010 11:02:44 AM

jonathan142 said:
Thanks for the quick replies! Your advice has convinced me 5850 is the best choice. I have looked at the 5770 and 5830 but the lackluster reviews scared me away. I was thinking of going for the sapphire version of the 5850.
http://www.bewawa.com/sapphire-video-card-hd-5850-1gb-d...
I assume it would come with drivers for xp 32-bit, can anyone confirm this?


Don't worry if your buying it brand new it always and I mean always comes with a Windows XP 32 bit driver. You need to download the driver from the disc and it should auto update like my 4870x2 did. I will confirm it for you it will! Nice choice by the way and glad we could help!
a c 358 U Graphics card
May 12, 2010 3:41:49 PM

You will have no problems running a HD 5850 in WinXP. I've been playing games on my WinXP rig with a HD 5850 since Aug/Sep 2009.
May 12, 2010 8:32:27 PM

jaguarskx said:
You will have no problems running a HD 5850 in WinXP. I've been playing games on my WinXP rig with a HD 5850 since Aug/Sep 2009.


1+
May 13, 2010 5:51:33 AM

Thanks, you guys are very reassuring. One last question though, in the card description it says:
Dual DL-DVI-I+DP+HDMI, Triple Display Support
Does this mean I can use the regular DVI connectors or HDMI, or do I need both on the monitor (will have to know as I'll be buying it with the card)? I heard HDMI is high quality picture, would using a HDMI connector instead of DVI give a better picture?
May 13, 2010 6:57:47 AM

jonathan142 said:
Thanks, you guys are very reassuring. One last question though, in the card description it says:
Dual DL-DVI-I+DP+HDMI, Triple Display Support
Does this mean I can use the regular DVI connectors or HDMI, or do I need both on the monitor (will have to know as I'll be buying it with the card)? I heard HDMI is high quality picture, would using a HDMI connector instead of DVI give a better picture?


DVI-Great picture, but no sound except threw the computer speakers which would be on the motherboard jacks or case jacks.

HDMI-Transfers Audio and picture threw a high resolution making it overall the better of the two!

You just need one of them and it dosn't matter which one, but like I'm going to tell you I would go with HDMI because costs are lower and HDMI is well rounded and better. DVI will work as well though.

I hope this answers your questions.
a c 376 U Graphics card
May 13, 2010 6:59:39 AM

They are the same in terms of picture quality, HDMI just carries audio as well if you monitor has built-in speakers(and you actually want to use them rather than good speakers.)
May 13, 2010 3:47:47 PM

They money you save from the 4970, you'd make up in about 1 year from all the extra juice it takes to run that card. It's the P4 for Video cards. Runs hot, sucks a ton of power even when idle, and it's crazy loud.

Just get the 5850.
!