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Looking to buy a new graphics card

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November 22, 2010 7:12:56 PM

hey im looking to upgrade my 8400 GS.. i want a nice graphics card as i have had my 8400 for a long time.. i recently bought a bx2331 samsung screen LED 23" 1920x1080 res. i got a quad core processor @ 2.4 GZ. I have windows vista.

now for what im looking for.. well dvds/rips that i watch on my pc on terrible quality.. my friend says it was because of my screen size and resolution that it is forced to be stretched and therefore worse graphics.. so a better graphics card will help aswell? i also play call of duty 4 and 240 constant fps is important

i was looking at the HD 5770 for about 120$ but people are saying it is getting outdated.. im willing to spend around 200$+- unless there is something that is really good for its price that is a bit more..

any advice would help a lot thanks :)  ive been doing research and stressing.. all this research is contradicting each other

More about : buy graphics card

a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:25:39 PM

To start you out the hd5770 is NOT outdated. I do not know you told you that but he does not know too much about GPUs. The hd5770 is a mid range card for non-serious gamers. It is NOT meant for 1080p gaming. Because you running your monitor @ 1920 x 1080p go for something like a gtx 460. Your CPU will bottleneck the gtx 460 a bit, but if you OC a bit you should have a nice machine. Even if you do not OC your should be able to play cod 4 at 80+ fps. Go for the gtx 460, it is a great card.
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:30:02 PM

At the top of your budget, I'd recommend the GTX 460. It is faster than the ATI 5770 over all, and so would be a better choice @ 1920x1080 resolution. Though I would honestly want to look specifically at the GTX 460 1GB version at that resolution.

Keep in mind, 240 FPS is useless because your monitor probably has a 60hz refresh rate @ 1080p, which means it can only display 60FPS. :)  But, excess FPS is not bad, as it means you have horsepower left over.

ECS GTX 460 1GB $189 - $20 Mail In Rebate = $169 + Free HAWX 2 Game Download
Core Clock: 765MHz
Custom Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ECS GTX 460 1GB $189 - $30 Mail In Rebate = $159 + Free HAWX 2 Game Download
Core Clock: 675MHz
Factory Standard Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You could also consider the new ATI 6850.

MSI ATI 6850 1GB $189
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Related resources
a c 147 U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:31:12 PM

I second the GTX460 1GB card 768MB version is my second choice. You can also go for an ATI 6850 which has slightly better performance but may cost the same or slightly more than the 460 1GB.

Why is 240FPS important? Your display will only run 60 anyways.
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:35:18 PM

I heard that the 6850 performs like the 5830 with better tessellation than the 5850. I think that the gtx 460 is better.
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:38:52 PM

The ATI 6850 and GTX 460 1GB are fairly close in benchmarks I've seen. They usually are +/- 1 to 5FPS of each other depending on the game. Some games obviously run a little better on nVidia or ATI hardware depending on how the game was coded.

Either the ATI 6850 or GTX 460 1GB are very good choices given your budget, and your monitor resolution.
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:43:22 PM

You could also look @ the ATI 5850 for $220
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

By the way, do you know what Power Supply Brand/Model # you have? Just to make sure your PSU can handle the video card upgrade? :)  Also, it needs to have a couple 6-pin PCI-E power connectors on it.
November 22, 2010 7:50:17 PM

wow.. thanks guys.. really awesome response :)  :)  :)  so i guess its between the 1GB 460 or the HD 6850 1 GB? whats the main difference between them?

k umm also about the manufacturers.. is there much of a difference of who manufactures it, like i know they tweak it a bit and stuff but is it worth paying like 8-10$ more for a better manufacturer and if so.. who would it be.. not and btw i dont get XFX's double life warrant

again.. thanks a lot guys :) 
November 22, 2010 7:54:51 PM

sorry i never saw these posts ^^ + ^^^
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:55:17 PM

Generally speaking... there's not a big difference between manufacturers. Not if you get a "stock" version of a card. Really what varies is warranty coverage (time period, etc). To me, that's never been a huge issue cause I upgrade like once a year. LOL

ECS is typically a cheaper brand, but they're not a 'knock off' either. If you can get a really good deal on an EVGA card, they've always been known for quality, and generally are better for tweaking (overclocking for example). So that's not a bad way to go.

As for the difference between GTX 460 and ATI 6850. Obviously they are competing brands. The ATI 6850 is the absolute latest card from ATI/AMD. So it's the "freshest" card in that segment. But the GTX 460 isn't very old either! So to me, it's more about who's camp you're in.

I've had both ATI and nVidia cards before, mostly nVidia to be honest. I've found nVidia to have the best drivers over the years. One card will perform better on one game, while another plays better on another game. This is because some games are tweaked toward ATI drivers, where as others are tweaked toward nVidia.

I'd suggest searching Google for "ATI 6850 Review" and looking at professional benchmark reviews. Any of those reviews should do direct comparisons between the 6850 and the GTX 460. You can see what games they tested, and what relates most directly to what you want to play. :) 

If you want to "Fold@Home" or use the video card for Video/Graphic editing, nVidia probably has the edge there. Of course, that only works if you have the right software.
November 22, 2010 7:56:26 PM

how can do i know if my PSU can handle it? and what you mean by Power Supply Brand/Model? and the 6-pin PCI-E.. is that the slots on the motherboard or what?

sorry im new to this stuff :/ 
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:56:36 PM

EVGA, MSI, Sapphire, Asus, and XFX are all good. Go for one with lower prices and more OC. I suggest the gtx 460 MSI cyclone 1gb because it runs soooo cool. :D 
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 7:59:34 PM

For a power supply buy a Corsair, Antec, or Seasonic 500-550w. The 6-pins connect to your GPU. You will need 2 6 pins for the gtx 460 (most PSU comes with 2 check to make sure) and 1 for the hd6850. :D 
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 8:05:07 PM

CoNtrAsT_ said:
how can do i know if my PSU can handle it? and what you mean by Power Supply Brand/Model? and the 6-pin PCI-E.. is that the slots on the motherboard or what?

sorry im new to this stuff :/ 


Is your computer self built? Or is it pre-made by a company?

If it's pre-made we could try to look up the details online if you provide us with your PC Brand name, and the model number on it. If you built it yourself, the box the power supply came in should say.

Either way, you can open up the side panel on your computer (turn the PC off first to be safe), and the Power Supply (usually at the top with a ton of wires coming out) will have a sticker on it which displays two very key points of information.

1) Max Wattage Output

2) +12V Amps

If you can give us the Brand name and the model number on the power supply, this will help us a LOT. :) 
a c 376 U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 8:09:04 PM

In terms of performance there's little difference between the GTX 460 1gb and the HD6850. I would choose between them basically based on what prices you find where ever you are.
The main difference in the individual cards you might buy will be the cooling. If you aren't going to overclock then getting the best cooling isn't a big deal but I would recommend doing so. Both of these cards overclock easily and well, usually by 30%+ over reference speeds. The Asus DirectCU version of either card is among the best and would be a good choice and the MSI cards tend to have good cooling as well with the Hawk being the best GTX 460 around.
If you don't have a decent power supply you are going to probably need to spend $50+ on one which means you may want to get a 768mb GTX 460 instead. It will still do quite well at 1080p, especially when overclocked.
A lesser but still notable issue is your processor. A 2.4ghz base speed is pretty low and will limit any of these cards in the more processor intensive games, especially ones that only utilize 2 cores. Assuming it's a Q6600 then if your motherboard allows for overclocking you can easily OC it up to 3.0-3.3ghz even on the stock cooler and that should be fine. If it won't allow you to OC then you could theoretically upgrade to a better LGA775 processor but it will cost a lot and you are probably best off just dealing with the CPU bottleneck until you can upgrade the rest of the system altogether. If the processor is one of the original Phenoms you are kind of stuck unless your motherboard allows for AM3 processors(quite possible) in which case a Phenom II x4 would be a worthwhile upgrade if you can afford it.
November 22, 2010 8:15:19 PM

ya that is pretty important.. i will look into those possibilities but how can i check what my model number on the power supply is? Mecer is the brand name i think if it is a brand?

also i found this which i think is a good deal? as hostile donut said it was very good

http://www.amazon.com/EVGA-Superclocked-PCI-Express-Gra...
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 8:18:58 PM

For $185 I'd say the MSI Cyclone is a good deal. That's a VERY good card if you want to OC it, or if you just want a very cool running video card.

The EVGA card is a great card as well, and is already overclocked. As easy as GPUs are to OC, I'd rather have the MSI Cyclone myself. It's less money too!
a c 376 U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 8:20:15 PM

Are you in the US?
November 22, 2010 8:23:12 PM

no i live quite far away actually :p 

and @ "If you can give us the Brand name and the model number on the power supply, this will help us a LOT. :) "

umm how do i check those stuff?
a b U Graphics card
November 22, 2010 8:38:42 PM

CoNtrAsT_ said:
no i live quite far away actually :p 

and @ "If you can give us the Brand name and the model number on the power supply, this will help us a LOT. :) "

umm how do i check those stuff?


jerreece said:

Either way, you can open up the side panel on your computer (turn the PC off first to be safe), and the Power Supply (usually at the top with a ton of wires coming out) will have a sticker on it which displays two very key points of information.

1) Max Wattage Output

2) +12V Amps

If you can give us the Brand name and the model number on the power supply, this will help us a LOT. :) 


a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2010 3:42:03 PM

I havn't been reading all this, but from the last comment I can tell you this. No the MSI Cyclone is supposed to NOT be noisy. Superclocked and Overclcker are normally different. The superclocked normally has a little more overclock in it. :D 
a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2010 4:31:53 PM

The MSI Cyclone is one of the coolest, and quietest you can get. :) 
a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2010 5:14:19 PM

^ He is exactly right. That is why I am getting a Cyclone. =D
a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2010 8:01:13 PM

To OC a GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) use MSI Afterburner which comes with the GPU you are buying. Download Furmark and stress test your GPU. For OC the CPU (Central Processing Unit) download OCCT. What are you using an AMD CPU or Intel?
November 23, 2010 8:41:37 PM

Intel
a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2010 8:50:01 PM

DARN! I do not know how to overclock your CPU then. I only know how to OC an AMD CPU, :fou:  :fou:  :fou:  :fou:  :fou: 
a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2010 9:17:47 PM

Let's see. Intel Quad Core @ 2.4Ghz. Do you have a Q6600 Intel Processor?

Those chips OverClock fairly well, depending on which motherboard chipset you have. The P35/45 based Intel motherboards did fairly well. However, the nVidia based 680i motherboards did not do well with OverClocking that processor.

Generally speaking, if you do have the Q6600 you should normally hit 3.2Ghz fairly easily in many cases. However, that CPU needs a very good cooler. The stock cooler won't do well for overclocking at all.

Honestly though, if you get the MSI GTX 460 1GB Cyclone edition, you shouldn't need to OC the video card right away any how. It performs well on its own. I'd be more concerned with the speed of your CPU than the GPU. But, that depends on what you're playing.

For Call of Duty 4... you should do perfectly fine with your CPU the way it is.
November 24, 2010 3:38:46 AM

how can i check if i have a Q6600?
a b U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 3:42:35 AM

Start>My computer> system information> look at CPU. :D 
November 24, 2010 11:49:08 AM

it doesnt say in system.. when would it say it? like under what heading
a b U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 4:05:19 PM

That was win. xp. What OS do you have?
a b U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 4:06:19 PM

For any windows OS go start> run> DXDIAG> and look at CPUs
November 24, 2010 6:00:09 PM

sorry thats a screen picture of my settings
a b U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 6:02:34 PM

Good job. The only core 2 quad from intel that is 2.4Ghz is the q6600. I am pretty sure that is what you have. It tells me mine in there though. Yes you have a q6600, I am 99.99% sure.
November 24, 2010 6:05:27 PM

ok thats awesome.. ill open my case tomorrow or so and ill let you guys know my power supply and stuff :) 

thanks a load guys
a b U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 6:07:25 PM

No problem man. ;) 
a c 376 U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 6:15:36 PM

The Q6600 is the only Intel quad core that runs at 2.4ghz by default. Overclocking it is pretty simply really. Your processor has a front side bus(fsb) speed of 266.6 mhz and multiplier of 9(266 x 9 = 2400.) Basically you just raise the front side bus speed in the BIOS. An fsb of 333mhz will give you a core speed of 3ghz which would be a good goal and I do think even the stock cooler can handle that but you may want to keep an eye on the temperatures. Keep in mind the processor will probably need slightly more voltage to achieve that speed so raise that a tiny bit in the BIOS as well. If you are willing to buy a good fan/heatsink then you should be able to get up to 3.5ghz and beyond.
That is just the basics. Googling will find you tons of guides with more specifics. Some can make it seem a lot more complex and/or dangerous then it really is mostly because they are about pushing the processor to extreme limits which is a different topic so look for one that is fairly simple to follow.
That said you need to have a motherboard that allows you to change these settings to attempt any of this. Most prebuilt computers by major manufacturers(Dell, HP, ect) won't allow you to overclock.
BTW adding another 2 gigs of ram to that system is a good idea.
November 24, 2010 6:43:37 PM

What will the 2GB of RAM do for me.. and what RAM should i get and how in the price region.. like i know RAM is all about fetching and transfering data between the CPU and i suppose more RAM will speed up that proccess as it needs to fetch less often?
a c 376 U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 7:02:48 PM

RAM is basically the computers short term memory. Information stored in the ram is much more quickly accessed than when it needs to be physically read from the hard drive. A lot of current games can use up to 2gb of ram as that is the limit in 32 bit versions of Windows but you should optimally have more as the operating system itself/background processes/services will usually use 500mb-1gb, more if you have other applications running.
a b U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 7:08:17 PM

jyjjy said:
RAM is basically the computers short term memory. Information stored in the ram is much more quickly accessed than when it needs to be physically read from the hard drive. A lot of current games can use up to *2gb of ram as that is the limit in 32 bit versions of Windows* but you should optimally have more as the operating system itself/background processes/services will usually use 500mb-1gb, more if you have other applications running.

I have windows xp 32-bit and I run 4gb. It only shows 3gb, but I turned on PAE (Physical Address Extension) which alows it to use ALL 4gb. :D 
a c 376 U Graphics card
November 24, 2010 9:47:18 PM

I was talking about the limit for an individual application not for the OS as a whole.
a b U Graphics card
November 25, 2010 4:21:29 PM

jyjjy said:
I was talking about the limit for an individual application not for the OS as a whole.

Why do you think people buy 4gb? When you turn on PAE it makes it so your 32-bit OS can use up to 4gb. No more. :non: 
a c 376 U Graphics card
November 25, 2010 10:24:21 PM

Once again that has nothing to do with what I'm talking about.
!