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Video card selection for new gaming rig

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 27, 2010 6:57:00 AM

I am currently building a new system for gaming. At current standing I have an option in front of me and I cannot make a decision. So I thought perhaps turning others for aid in decision. Currently the new system is comprised of the following:

Intel Core i7 @ 3.2Ghz
ASUS Rampage III Extreme Republic of Gamers Edition
Corsair Dominator series DDR 3 1600Mhz 8-8-8-24 Tri-channel memory (12GB total)
Hitachi 1TB SATA II drive
CoolIT Liquid cooling
Kingwin 1100 modular PSU (80+ Silver)
Coolermaster HAF 932 case
Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit will be the operating system

Here in lies mt dilemma: (mind you the system I will be used on my 55" 1080P television DVI & HDMU)

In front of me are 2 ASUS ATI Radeon HD 5870's (2GB DDR5) and as well 2 BFG GTX 295's (1792MB DDR3)
I have been trying to figure out which would be best for the primary gaming system. (My wife is as well a gamer and I plan to use the remaining cards in her system).

I have read great things about the ATI 5870 cards prior to purchasing them. However now I sit in question after reading other gaming and overclocking forums of people having issues with the 5870 in many games. Many threads have pointed to VBIOS and drivers which I suppose over time the kinks will be worked out. However, before installing the cards and beginning the setup of the machine(s) I was hoping to get input from the community in regards to which card to use in my primary and which cards to use on my wife's system (specs are fairly similar). She has no real care which she just wants to play metro 2033 and several other non EA titles. I know this may seem like a odd question I was just wanting to avoid frustration down the line after the setup once the gaming starts.

I will not be overclocking the cards. according to forums that seems to be when people get into trouble.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and suggestions
(my spelling is horrible)
a c 169 U Graphics card
a b 4 Gaming
July 27, 2010 7:01:52 AM

2 5870s perform better than 2 GTX 295s,also they support newer techs like DX11,eyefinity... etc.
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a c 189 U Graphics card
July 27, 2010 12:30:05 PM

^+1
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July 27, 2010 1:12:14 PM

In your case, the dual 5870's are definately the way to go!

However, I'm curious as to where you found 2 295s, link plx?
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July 27, 2010 2:15:03 PM

Definitely the 5870s
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July 27, 2010 2:22:57 PM

bertimus said:
In your case, the dual 5870's are definately the way to go!

However, I'm curious as to where you found 2 295s, link plx?



Amazon.com (searched for BFG GTX 295) They had them as well our local Compusa store had a couple in stock for cheaper. I grabbed them from there but orginally found them on amazon...
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July 27, 2010 2:25:32 PM

Thanks everyone.. I kinda thought the 5870's but was hesitant due to others talk smack about the catalyst drivers and VBIOS. Well I will post back here after the install and setup tonight. To let everyone know my thoughts on the 5870's...

The wife is hounding me so it may be that I have to setup mine up second and hers first.. She's more addicted to pc gaming now than I am.
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a b U Graphics card
July 27, 2010 2:30:22 PM

Yes the 5870 is a great card. Funnily enough, when it comes to driver issues etc. it often seems to be some people suffer and others don't. Those that suffer swear off ATI and say Nvidia is the way to go, meanwhile people from Nvidia end up having similar issues and swear off Nvidia
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July 30, 2010 2:40:52 AM

System finished and some difficuilties I noticed and some sadness I have.

The system performance in 3d mark vantage is amazing! Well that is after some BSOD's after VBIOS update. To my amazement after booting the system after the vbios update I caught a BSOD 0x00000101. shut down removed crossfire cable and system booted successful.

I then proceeded to chekc the Card information check in catalyst I found that the secondary BIOS date did not match the first. I did recieve a "Success" from the Vbios flasher. So Shut down and swap cards. rebooted and reflashed. Success! After a reboot the Vbios date matched the orginal primary card.

Shutdown and added the second 5870 and the crossfire card. No BSOD on boot.

Now comes the sadness. Installed BFBC2 > reboot > install latest patch > reboot > launch game > BUST! > launch Crysis (same process) BUST!.. WHY EA!!!! WHY!!!!!

Wife launches same game an laughs.... She states "Should have gotten the Nwhatever cards. I have been playing them all :p " I laugh after comparing the benchmark results.

So far I am enjoying the cards from a Pc tech perspective (install, troubleshoot, tweak and run) however from the gamer side.. I am disappointed that things aren't working easily for me on ati and the wife rolls smoothly on with nvidia. Well I wanted to update everyone on my findings with the ASUS ATI MATRIX HD5870 cards running in crossfire.

My new rig is absolutely awesome.... will be better once the kinks are worked out.
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a b U Graphics card
July 30, 2010 10:41:04 AM

Well, she has the advantage of using an older machine (I assume) everyone knows a fresh build always takes time to sort out - every machine has its own personality and ya just have to get to know it, pamper it and tell it you love it :) 
It's prety much why I compare computers to women actually :p 
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a b U Graphics card
July 30, 2010 11:17:31 AM

^? my question after reading all posts.
You are one of the few lucky guys alive to have a wife that loves you and games and also have the budget to get 2 systems like that.

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July 30, 2010 6:10:03 PM

asteldian said:
Well, she has the advantage of using an older machine (I assume) everyone knows a fresh build always takes time to sort out - every machine has its own personality and ya just have to get to know it, pamper it and tell it you love it :) 
It's prety much why I compare computers to women actually :p 



And pamper it I shall.
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July 30, 2010 6:15:07 PM

Quote:
Why u flashed ur bios.For overclocking.do any game run at all?


Flashed the video cards BIOS as the manufacturer tech support team (after a call) stated it can erwsolve alot of glitches trhat can occur during game play and as well the dreaded gray screen that many 5870 owners complained of.

So far most EA games crash but some play.

2033 - works
Sins of a solar empire - works
Bioshock and Bioshock 2 - works

Steam titles seem to be fine.... EA can bite my Beeping beep beep. Seems that a large majority of people are experiencing this as well

BFBC2 - DOI
Modern Warfare 2 - DOI
Crysis Suite - DOI

Note Frustrations insue on the DOI's
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