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Question regarding GPU and TV

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January 6, 2011 5:33:07 PM

Hi Tom's Hardware fellas

I have been a reader for a few months as i am trying to build a new rig. I am a beginner in the field therefore i have a few questions to ask which i couldn't find the answers from google. I have only bought a i7-950 and 6gb of 1600mhz rams 9cas (3x2gb) i am planning to buy the rest in a couple of weeks. My planned spec would be as follow

CPU: i7-950 (bought)
Mobo: sabertooth x58
Mem: 3x2 gb hyperx 1600mhz 9cas (bought)
GPU: 1 or 2x 5850 radeon
PSW: 800+ sli ready

My questions are:
1.) I currently own a pretty old 720p (i bought it when it first came out lolz) 32" tv which i plan to use as the monitor as well. It seems that the 5850 alone will support 1080p let alone the crossfire. Therefore should i upgrade my tv aswell?

2.) I am only building this for casual gaming. (SCII, DiabloIII when it comes out and maybe some shooting game) Should i get crossfire or not?

I need some guidances and thanks for the help :D 

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a c 214 U Graphics card
January 6, 2011 6:39:00 PM

Since your a casual gamer i would say no you do not need to crossfire.

I would upgrade to a 1080p TV,the 5850 should have no problem playing Blizzard games at high settings on a 1080p resoultion and some casual shooters.Is the TV you use only for the mointor or do you watch TV on it?

This rig your building looks pretty serious,espisally for a "casual" gamer.
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a b U Graphics card
January 6, 2011 7:18:09 PM

If you're only going to use the TV as a computer monitor only you'd be better off saving some money by buying a ~21-23" 1080p monitor.

+1 to no Crossfire. It would be total overkill for SCII and Diablo III. SCII is CPU limited on most rigs anyway, although your i7 will eat it for lunch.
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January 6, 2011 7:52:47 PM

Since you guys are suggesting single graphic card, should i spend the money investing on a better card therefore i can crossfire that one later if needed, or should i just stick with the 5850 (there's a good deal today on newegg xfx 5850 for $160 i believe). Yeah i want to use that TV as a monitor because it will save me a lot of space doing that. Or else i will just give my parents the 720p for their bedroom and buy a 1080p for myself lolz.
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a c 125 U Graphics card
January 6, 2011 7:55:26 PM

Curious what are the plans for the PC? "Casual" gaming, apparently but what else? If you're not really hardcore about the best graphics then I'd say you're going a bit overboard unless you're into other stuff maybe you do a lot of 3D work or video and audio editing/encoding...

Anyway you already have the CPU so I guess you won't change that... so onto the GPU issue.

Well, I agree with the above. Definitely upgrade to 1080p or even 1920x1200 if you go with a big 30"+ monitor.

At 1080p a 5850 or GTX460 would be good for what you're saying you want to do. They won't max out every game (namely Metro 2033 and Crysis) but it'll be high settings nonetheless. You might consider a 6870 as well which is a tad better than 5850.
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January 6, 2011 7:55:47 PM

and Yes i watch TV with it aswell. I put all the gadgets inside my room because i don't really do much in the living room (I never spend time in the living room except for eating and poker games)
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January 6, 2011 8:04:16 PM

thanks for all the helps guys, I really appreciate it. I am going to pull the trigger on 5850 for now, and i will buy another one down the road if i do decide to play games that require more gpu power. I am just going to buy a new 1080p 22" monitor for pc gaming. thx a bunch
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a c 125 U Graphics card
January 6, 2011 8:05:13 PM

Get a 1080p TV then, a decent sized one is like $500-$800 and it'll look much better. Although note that the bigger the size, if the resolution stays the same, you get a less crisp image. For example 1080p on a 24" monitor is way sharper than 1080p on a 40" tv.
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January 6, 2011 8:07:08 PM

The reason i bought the cpu because it was a good deal (235 i believe i bought it for) and i do want my system to last for a few years before i invest in another one down the road lolz. (as u can tell i am not really techy salvage, i am still using my 720p!!! lolz) I just want to be able to play games smoothly instead of relying on the on board gpu from my vaio T_T.
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January 6, 2011 8:09:03 PM

Yeah i am thinking about maybe 22" or 24" max. Space management is such a pain in my apartment and i don't really want to move my whole gaming area setup out of my room T_T. I have my ps3 and xbox setup nicely in big computer desk :D 
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a c 214 U Graphics card
January 6, 2011 8:22:47 PM

I'd say your defnitly set with a 5850 and an i7,should last you 3 years or more.And if you need to you could add another card for crossfire if needed.

Although buying a monitor is cheaper i think it's a better investment to buy a 1080p TV.Gaming on a huge screen is extremely fun,espisally HD ones...

EDIT:just realized you had a PS3 and an Xbox360,all of that put together means that you definitly should get a 1080p TV,it's a trifecta!
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January 6, 2011 8:52:35 PM

hahah ok i will probaby get a 32" 1080p and send the 720p to my parents :D  that would make both me and my parents happy.

thanks for all the guidance, much appreciate :D 
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January 6, 2011 8:52:45 PM

Best answer selected by janpwnz.
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a c 214 U Graphics card
January 6, 2011 9:09:37 PM

Your welcome,can't believe you didn't think of upgrading sooner when you have a PS3 and Xbox360
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a c 169 U Graphics card
January 7, 2011 5:37:05 AM

This topic has been closed by Maziar
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