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Need Advice on New GPU thinking GTX 460 1GB or AMD 6850

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December 7, 2010 4:38:01 PM

I need to make a decision before 12/9/2010 because that's when the rebate offer is over on the MSI GTX 460 1GB Hawk. Reviews say it has great OC potential, cooling and is very quiet.

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

I've pretty much settled on this card but want other opinions before I go ahead with it. Should I get an AMD 6850 instead? Wait for GTX 560/AMD69xx?

I don't really have a budget so long as the deal is right but rather not needlessly pay the premium for performance that doesn't offer any significant gameplay improvement. SLI/CF is an option, if you think its worth it.

My current system:
Core i5-760
Asus P7P55D-E Pro
G.Skill Eco Series 4GB (2 x 2GB)
Cooler Master Elite 330 w/ extra 12mm front fan
Corsair 650TX 650W PSU
Nvidia 9600 GT (borrowed from friend)

Resolution: 1920x1080
a c 376 U Graphics card
December 7, 2010 5:14:01 PM

Yeah, you aren't going to do better than the Hawk for that kind of money at the moment.
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December 7, 2010 5:49:21 PM

Should I get two in SLI? I probably don't need it but would it be worth it?

Do I need to upgrade my PSU if I SLI? I probably already know the answer but want to hear it coming from someone else to be sure.
a c 539 U Graphics card
December 7, 2010 5:56:00 PM

According to the article I linked earlier, you need 550 watts for one Hawk, and 750 watts for two in SLI. Two Hawks in SLI will bring your performance up to the level of a single GTX 480/580, while also costing less (of course, you would need to factor in the cost of a new PSU).

I would get the one Hawk, try it out, and decide then if you need to get another with a new PSU.
a c 376 U Graphics card
December 7, 2010 6:21:33 PM

Your PSU has 636w on the +12v rail. At reference during stress testing SLIed GTX 460s tend to use about 300w. Even adding 50w per card for a high OC that would still leave you over 200w for the rest of the system which should be fine.
That said I would just get one. Those cards are designed to OC up over 900mhz and at that point for 1080p there are probably less than 5 games where you won't be able to max out every setting and play smoothly.
a c 376 U Graphics card
December 7, 2010 6:34:05 PM

17seconds said:
According to the article I linked earlier, you need 550 watts for one Hawk, and 750 watts for two in SLI. Two Hawks in SLI will bring your performance up to the level of a single GTX 480/580, while also costing less (of course, you would need to factor in the cost of a new PSU).

They are measuring power from the wall which is input power not output power which is what all PSUs are rated for. It's really not a good method of calculating what kind of power supply you need because it ignores efficiency which is never perfect. That said their numbers show the system using 350w with a single card. Adding 200w for another card like they suggest gets you to 550w so I don't know where they are getting the 750w recommendation from. Perhaps they are assuming a lower quality PSU with less on the +12v but it's irrelevant when talking about a Corsair. Their numbers show the 636w on this guys PSU should cover it, even ignoring that they are taking readings from the wall.

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a c 539 U Graphics card
December 7, 2010 6:48:24 PM
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jyjjy said:
They are measuring power from the wall which is input power not output power which is what all PSUs are rated for. It's really not a good method of calculating what kind of power supply you need because it ignores efficiency which is never perfect. That said their numbers show the system using 350w with a single card. Adding 200w for another card like they suggest gets you to 550w so I don't know where they are getting the 750w recommendation from. Perhaps they are assuming a lower quality PSU with less on the +12v but it's irrelevant when talking about a Corsair. Their numbers show the 636w on this guys PSU should cover it, even ignoring that they are taking readings from the wall.

They also indicate that they are using a highly stressed overclocked system. Corsair PSU's are excellent and known to comfortably deliver more power than their rating. I still think 650 watts is pushing it with factory overclocked Hawks, but depending on the other system components, it may work. All the same, the process should be the same; buy one Hawk, decide if that's enough; if not buy another, see if the PSU holds up; if not upgrade the PSU.
a c 376 U Graphics card
December 7, 2010 7:25:21 PM

750w would be more ideal but I think it should handle 2 even with a high OC. The only point it might give out is running Furmark or similar with both cards OCed to the max but that isn't comparable to normal gaming.
a b U Graphics card
December 7, 2010 10:55:16 PM

A HD 6870 would be nice. Or wait for the 6950, to be released a week from now.
December 9, 2010 11:54:55 AM

Best answer selected by kureme.
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