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Recommendations for a GTX 460

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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September 27, 2010 11:48:29 PM

Hello,

I'm very new at creating/building PCs and I just recently built one. However, it is currently incomplete as I am just searching for a video card to use. I've basically settled for a GTX 460 and after reading tons of reviews, including the roundup here at Tom's, I'm still very, very confused as to which one I should purchase.

Because I am a newbie at this kind of thing, I'm really just looking for something that will require - at least at this point - user input and works amazingly out of the box. This means, for the next few months or so (maybe even up to a year), I will not be fiddling with any sort of overclocking of any kind or any of the cool stuff people can do on PCs (mostly because I have no idea how to do it yet).

My setup is very basic and as follows:
AMD Phenom II X4 965 BE - 3.4 GHz
Gigabyte GA-880A-UD3H Motherboard
Patriot Sector 5 PGV34G1333ELK 4GB DDR3 2X2GB DDR3-1333
Ultra LS600 Lifetime Series 600W Power Supply
Thermaltake V4 Black Edition ATX Mid Tower Case
- All with stock cooling provided

And I'll be gaming on a 19" HDTV at the resolution of 1360x768. 1920x1080 is supported on my television, though it's kinda blurry and not as sharp as the former resolution possibly due to it not being its native resolution. I also realize that buying such a powerful card for such a relatively small resolution might seem overkill, but it's with the thought of the future and me possibly getting a better monitor and such.

Well anyways, with that incredibly long preamble, which brand of GTX 460 should I be looking at? The price I'm looking at is no more than around $250 CAD. Any suggestions would be very appreciated.
a b Î Nvidia
September 28, 2010 12:14:59 AM

At newegg.ca the MSI Hawk, Cyclone, Asus DirecCU and Gigabyte dual fan are all around the same price, under 250.
I have the Cyclones, they run cool.
Supposedly the Hawk might use more expensive components, that would be a good pick. www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127518...
, good luck.
a b Î Nvidia
September 28, 2010 12:30:19 AM

I highly recommend the Gigabyte as it has very quiet cooling and features VRM cooling which only one other brand to my knowledge has shipped with their cards. It may not seem all that important but with power stages hovering under load at 90-105c these cards simply won't last for to long especially when pushed to their limits. The Gigabyte has cooling along with Zotac. The clocks may not be as high as other but at least they are not Kamikaze. Live the dream today but die tomorrow.
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a b Î Nvidia
September 28, 2010 12:41:16 AM

Yup, the Gigabytes, MSIs and Asus are the better ones. The GTX460s arent hot running cards so life shouldn't be an issue. However, for you the reference 768MB should do fine.

However I would like to point out your PSU isn't the best. Look for Corsair/Seasonic etc. You could drop down to even a quality 450W, it would be plenty and would provide cleaner more reliable power.
September 28, 2010 1:33:00 AM

I was already looking at the Gigabyte dual fan version, the MSI Hawk and the EVGA ones (which no one recommended and will probably be out of the running because of it) due to the fact that they had mini-HDMI to HDMI adapters which would help me tremendously in that I wouldn't have to use the VGA ports and I wouldn't have to buy one as well. However, choosing between them has been hard.

I've also heard very good things about the Cyclone and the ASUS DirectCU versions but again, the lack of favoured adapters has made me cast my eye on other cards. Obviously something with a higher factory clock would work best in this situation so I wouldn't have to do it immediately. I should also add, which is obvious to many people, but the quieter/cooler the better.

Timop said:
However I would like to point out your PSU isn't the best. Look for Corsair/Seasonic etc. You could drop down to even a quality 450W, it would be plenty and would provide cleaner more reliable power.


You're right, I guess. However, a lot of the PSU calculators that I was using said that I needed a minimum of 500w to run my setup. The LS600 was very attractive to me at the time because it had my requirement plus it was priced at $50, which I could not pass up at that point in time. I will probably look into a different PSU in the next 6 months, but for now this one works well enough for me - even if it says in the box (which I missed at the time of purchase) that efficiency is at 78% load.

I guess that is one of the downfalls of being a newbie in PC building.
a b Î Nvidia
September 28, 2010 1:40:48 AM

PSU calculators are not a very good tool to be using regardless of skill as they only factor in a fixed set of values when actual consumption varies greatly as well the quality of the hardware installed. So it is suggested that you always get a psu bigger than you need in case of future upgrades or the unit does not measure up to what is stated on the sticker but still performs well enough to meet your needs.
September 28, 2010 6:39:52 PM

Yes, that's exactly why I went with the 600w. It's real world effectiveness, however, is another matter. I have been using it for a few weeks and its been working fine. But that's without the very essential GPU that I'm beating myself up for trying to decide.

Referring back to the GTX 460, obviously some coolers are better than others and have higher clock speeds, but in general, does it really matter which one I get? Considering that I'm not going to be overclocking as of yet, should I be aiming for the higher factory default clocks? Or could a less expensive alternative work as well at the moment, especially when one factors my current setup?

By the way, my apologies for not making it clear, the purpose of the card/system will be for gaming. No sort of editing or anything of that sort.
a b Î Nvidia
September 28, 2010 7:18:01 PM

It depends you can always settle for a kamikaze like Palit that reach 900mhz core but run hot enough to biol water on the vrm side. If you want silence then go Gigabyte. If you decide on MSI Cyclone or the Hawk then I suggest that you mod them. The stock cards have no cooling at all like the rest except for a rare few. The EE version from EVGA from what I have read must sound like my x1900xt which is like a small gas turbine (loud).
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