Currently I own a 9600GT 1GB DDR2, and I need to upgrade it so I can play new games without getting any lag, beacuse when I play Just Cause 2; I get an average framerate of 20-30 fps, and the same goes for Splinter Cell: Conviction. I'm looking for a graphics card that's $100-$200 maybe a bit more depending on the card's specs.
I'm looking for a Graphics Card that can last me for at least a few years before it becomes classified as "old" and won't be able to run new games, and no I don't care if it's ATi or nVidia.
My current system:
CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 945 3GHz
RAM: 4GB DDR2 RAM
OS: Windows 7 Professional 32 bit
Motherboard: Gigabyte MA770-US3
PSU: Thermaltake 450W
GPU: 9600GT 1GB DDR2
Screen: 19inch BenQ 4:3
Resolution played on: 1280x1024
The games your playing are probably more GPU intensive as the 9600GT is just about right for your resolution.
In order to eliminate the lag, I think even the HD5750 is enough. That is, if you do not have plans on upgrading your monitor. But I think eventually you will so go for the hD5770 for a little more.
Here is a good reading on these two great cards:http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/graphics-card-radeon-hd-5870-geforce-gtx-480,2621-3.html