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Advice on new graphics cards

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October 19, 2010 1:17:24 AM

To give you a little background on where I'm coming from hardware wise, I'm using a Dell 1720 lappy with a 8600GTM (maybe GS), & 4GB of Ram. It works decently for the Games I play; L4D/2, BC2, MoH, other Steam games, but I want exceptional performance. Not top of the line, but not anything that I'll have to play on all medium to low settings.

ALSO!!!! I want to stick with a nVidia card because I want to do 3D (I know, I'm lame :\ )

I'm gathering various parts for a desktop as we speak. I plan to make this a mostly gaming PC and on a budget of roughly $850.


APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: I'll say within the next month, and definitely before Christmas.

USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (L4D/2, DoD, CS:S, TF2, BC2, MoH) Movies, Video Editing, Work, Homework, Music.

CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY: I'm planning on purchasing this PSU http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS: These are the components I wish to buy. On a side note I'm not sure if I should purchase the i5 + Mobo or if I should get an AMD X4 9XXX + Mobo.

i5 760: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: (e.g.: newegg.com, ncix.com -- to show us selection & pricing) COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: (e.g.: Grand Fenwick)

Newegg.com, Frys.com, Tigerdirect.com etc. Country - United States

PARTS PREFERENCES: nVidia, don't really care the brand. Not sure if I should get a 2XX series or a 4XX series. Not sure If I should get GTX or GTS. I've seen some brands out there that I had previously never heard of, sparkle, palit, zotac, elitegroup, jaton, galaxy. (When I built my last PC [circa 2005...maybe?] Gigabyte was getting a bad rap and I went with them and never had any problems with my 7600GS, so maybe these brands aren't bad either?]

OVERCLOCKING: Yes / No / Maybe SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes / No / Maybe

Don't really care all that much about OC'ing I'd like to do SLi but don't have to if you guys think say 1 GTS250 or 1 GTS450 would be sufficient. I wouldn't be opposed to SLi GTS250 if you guys think it will outperform 1 GTX460. But I'll listen to your advice.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: preferably 1920 x 1080 but 1440 or higher is plenty.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: On the cheap plz lol. Nah, I don't have any problem spending some money on this build but I want it done ASAP and unless you guys really think say a GTX 480 is really the way to go for L4D (I hope not :\ ) then I will have to put it off for a few more weeks and save a little more cash.

Also, out of curiosity, what does the whole Fermi thing mean? And I'm open to suggestions on which processor I should go with, from what I've heard the i5 760 is pretty damn good, I really don't want to go with a i7. I'm not opposed to an AMD processor but anyone feels I should go with AMD, please recommend a CPU and Mobo that supports SLi (if they even do anymore) and supports at least 4GB of Ram... At least!


Thank you for any suggestions and help!


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a b U Graphics card
October 19, 2010 1:40:35 AM

With $850, you could probably get a GTX 470 (~$280), or if you wait for a few days, possibly one of the new Radeon 6xxx cards. And no, you won't have to play on low to medium settings.
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October 19, 2010 1:49:25 AM

But remember $850 is my total build. Case, mobo, processor etc. So I'd say I'll dedicate ~$200 to the GPU.
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a c 171 U Graphics card
October 19, 2010 2:23:16 AM

well if you absolutely must do 3D then a gtx470 is probably required to get decent framerate. If no 3D, a gtx460 1gb is enough, and then you could always get another gtx460 later in SLI for more power.
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October 19, 2010 3:11:55 AM

According to this http://www.nvidia.com/object/3d-vision-requirements.htm... the GTS250 is capable of 3D as well as the GTX260-295. What is the benefit of going with a 4XX series over the 2?

Also whats the difference between the GTS and GTX? I was told OverClocked out of the box. Is that the only difference? Also, difference between GDDR3 vs GDDR5? I also have seen a GTS250 with 2GB of RAM, http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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a b U Graphics card
October 19, 2010 4:03:56 AM

To answer your first question: Almost all of Nvidia's recent cards are capable of 3d, but having to render the game twice (once for each eye) doubles the strain on the graphics card, requiring a significantly more powerful card to play demanding games.

For the second question: GTS really just means less powerful. The GTS 250 was actually an older architecture compared to the GTX 260 and above, but the GTS 450 has the same architecture as the GTX 460 and above, it's just not as powerful.
GDDR5 runs at double the effective speed of GDDR3 (IDK why, something to do with the architecture). That means it is twice as fast. A GTS 250 with 2GB of ram would be completely useless unless you use it for some kind of CAD program that uses tons of ram. Otherwise, for gaming, most of the RAM will remain unused. Even with a 1GB card, depending on the game, usually less than half is being used (some very demanding games though will make use of 1GB and above).
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October 19, 2010 4:50:05 AM

jryan388 said:
To answer your first question: Almost all of Nvidia's recent cards are capable of 3d, but having to render the game twice (once for each eye) doubles the strain on the graphics card, requiring a significantly more powerful card to play demanding games.

For the second question: GTS really just means less powerful. The GTS 250 was actually an older architecture compared to the GTX 260 and above, but the GTS 450 has the same architecture as the GTX 460 and above, it's just not as powerful.
GDDR5 runs at double the effective speed of GDDR3 (IDK why, something to do with the architecture). That means it is twice as fast. A GTS 250 with 2GB of ram would be completely useless unless you use it for some kind of CAD program that uses tons of ram. Otherwise, for gaming, most of the RAM will remain unused. Even with a 1GB card, depending on the game, usually less than half is being used (some very demanding games though will make use of 1GB and above).



Well you seem to be a wealth of knowledge. Based on my stated needs and a projected budget for the card of ~$200 what would you recommend? Also what does Fermi mean and whats the main difference between the 400 series and the 200 series?

Would a GTX265 be comparable to a GTX 460?
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a b U Graphics card
October 19, 2010 9:09:11 PM

Fermi is the codename of the architecture used in the GTX 400 series. Techincally, the 480/470/465 are all GF100 (the name of the actual die, not the architecture), the 460 is GF104, and the 450 is GF106. The 480, 470, and 465 all use the same GPU die, but defects in the chips prevent them from being fully functional, so some of the CUDA cores are disabled.

For $200, you should be able to get a GTX 460 1GB on Newegg if you use rebates.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...
If you are going to overclock it anyway, any of the cheaper cards will be fine. If you don't like overclocking it yourself, it would be worth an extra $20 performance-wise to get the factory overclocked Palit Sonic Platinum:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

A GTX 460 is somewhere between a 275 and 285 performance-wise. There is no GTX 265.
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October 21, 2010 12:21:28 AM

Best answer selected by luckydemon.
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a c 271 U Graphics card
October 21, 2010 12:27:21 AM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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