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5850 Black or 6870 or 6950

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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February 15, 2011 3:26:14 AM

Hey guys,

I own a rig that's aging a bit. My setup is:

Asus P5Q-PRO
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
ATI Radeon 4850
4GB DDR2

It's time for me to upgrade as the GPU on my media pc just died so I decided to give up my 4850 and get something better for my PC.

Things that I have in mind:

1. XFX 5850 Black Edition: $182.88
2. XFX HD6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 (Twin fan cooler): $232
3. XFX ATI Radeon HD 5870: $248.90
4. XFX Radeon HD 6950 2GB GDDR5: $293.59

(These prices include tax so you might think it's a bit more expensive)

Which card do you think provides best bang for the buck? As you can see, I do not upgrade frequently. (I know that my Q6600 is aging and it's probably going to be replaced by end of 2011)

I don't mind spending extra as long as the extra cash difference is well justified.

Thanks for your input in advance!
Don

EDIT:

Quote:

I've spent many hours yesterday to research and I narrowed my choice down to these two:

1. XFX Radeon HD 6950 2GB GDDR5: $293.59
Pros: Able to flash the card to 6970 (but it decreases it's oc limit) and it's a faster card than the GTX 560 but a small margin.
Cons: Horrible driver support, runs hot, and loud.

2. MSI GTX560 N560GTX-Ti Twin Frozr II/OC: $280
Pros: Quiet, runs cool, CUDA, and PhysX support. Better driver support
Cons: It's an overall slower card than the 6950. Although it can be oced, it is still outperformed by an oced 6950.

What's your verdict?

More about : 5850 black 6870 6950

a c 214 U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 3:47:56 AM

I was going to say you might as well upgrade your CPU first but you said your going to upgrade it soon.

I currently own a XFX6870 and it really rocks but it does lack the performance i was hoping for.If your like me and you need to play games maxed out @60fps constantly then i would suggest getting a 6950 or a gtx560.I can give a better reccomendation if you can list your full systems specs(PSU,CPU speed etc.) and what level you like to play games at.Also the resoultion of your monitor would be helpful.
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 3:50:08 AM

Pure brute power, hd5870, for something new, the hd6950 is great and can unlock to a hd6970. I would get the hd6950, but I would also OC that CPU.
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February 15, 2011 4:01:32 AM

purple stank said:
I was going to say you might as well upgrade your CPU first but you said your going to upgrade it soon.

I currently own a XFX6870 and it really rocks but it does lack the performance i was hoping for.If your like me and you need to play games maxed out @60fps constantly then i would suggest getting a 6950 or a gtx560.I can give a better reccomendation if you can list your full systems specs(PSU,CPU speed etc.) and what level you like to play games at.Also the resoultion of your monitor would be helpful.


Thanks for the help!

Here is the full spec of my rig.

Asus P5Q-PRO
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 @ 2.40Ghz (Stock)
Visiontek ATI Radeon 4850
G.Skill 2x2GB PC2-6400 (F2-6400CL4-2GBPI) DDR2 Ram
PC Power & Cooling Silencer 610W EPS12V PSU

I have 1920x1200 and I always plays games at this resolution when I want to.

Thanks!
Don
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a c 106 U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 4:19:22 AM

The 5850 is certainly the best bang for the buck. Still, since you want to game at 1920x1200 I think you would appreciate the extra power of the 5870 if you're only going to stick to a single card. Since you have a crossfire board though I think you should consider getting two 5850s or 6850s and overclocking your CPU. The old Q6600 overclocks rather well after all.
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 4:21:14 AM

hd69xx series performs very well @ high res, I vote hd6950 unlocked.
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February 15, 2011 4:34:29 AM

Quote:
560 i linked runs cooler then every card you have on your main post and uses the same power as a 6850. The 4 series 470 and 480 were the heat and power demons. The 5 series is vastly improved


*** the links don't work. Just read the review

http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/3802/msi_geforce_gtx_5...

MSI 560 Ti

Idle : 27c
Load : 54C

Guru review

http://www.guru3d.com/article/msi-n560gtx-ti-twin-froze...


huh.. if I am reading correctly 560 runs cooler/faster than 6950 correct? It's also cheaper too? Why is this the case? lol Dont we usually pay more $$ for the performance?
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February 15, 2011 5:02:51 AM

Quote:
Amd and Nvidia are in a price war which is why the cards are so cheap these days. 8 months ago when fermi was released for the performance you get with a 560 you'd have to pay over 350 dollars for.

The 560/6950 trade blows with the 560 usually coming out on top. The MSI 560 is pretty amazing. There are guys overclocking them to 1070 core over at the XS forums on the stock cooler and they're not breaking 70C under load.


Thanks again, for your reply.

Because of your help, I have narrowed the choice to 560 and 6950.

Knowing that I can unlock 6950 to 6970, would you still recommend the 560?

This is my last question I promise! lol

Thanks again,
Don
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 5:18:24 AM

5870's are getting cheap I am not providing links but I've seen 209 after MIR (can)
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February 15, 2011 5:23:19 AM

spentshells said:
5870's are getting cheap I am not providing links but I've seen 209 after MIR (can)


Well. If I were to purchase the 5870, I'd rather purchase the 5850 black because its $159 after MIR (before tax) I dont think it's worth $50 to get the 5870. (More than 25%)
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 7:19:34 AM

canadian prices are usualy higher by 20-30 dollars although the money is virtualy at par and since that is the case that is 20-30 extra dollars well spent.
Have a look is all I am sayong I just might be doing it myself.
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February 15, 2011 3:03:49 PM

Thanks everyone for their input.

I've spent many hours yesterday to research and I narrowed my choice down to these two:

1. XFX Radeon HD 6950 2GB GDDR5: $293.59
Pros: Able to flash the card to 6970 (but it decreases it's oc limit) and it's a faster card than the GTX 560 but a small margin.
Cons: Horrible driver support, runs hot, and loud.

2. MSI GTX560 N560GTX-Ti Twin Frozr II/OC: $280
Pros: Quiet, runs cool, CUDA, and PhysX support. Better driver support
Cons: It's an overall slower card than the 6950. Although it can be oced, it is still outperformed by an oced 6950.

What's your verdict?
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February 15, 2011 3:22:25 PM

Quote:
Easy way to solve this.. Whats your favorite game and at what resolution?


That I am not sure. I tend to lean on Steam games when I play games. (L4D2) Other than that, sometimes I play sc II and need for speed. I have the tendency to start a new game and not finish it but I do play varieties of games.
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 3:22:27 PM

out of those two I would go for the gtx 560, hands down, just keep in mind that for now that the 6950 is not much faster than a 58505870/6870 certainly a bit faster but not by much but the 2 gigs of ram may help you into the future... but by that time you may be running a totally different 2 gig card so its kind of pointless just my two cents

the gtx 560 ti will oc past a 6950, and when both are oc'ed, (depending on what the oc's are...) I would still take the gtx 560ti as it will likely oc to higher performance, the one you picked out is a little expensive as you can find them near 250 in the US but i think I read somewhere that you are in Canada...

get the gtx 560 and don't look back, when its oc'ed it can perform at gtx 570 levels which will be some excellent performance at 1080p, the gtx 560 is the best price/performance imo the 6950 offers you less price/performance (although there are some cheap deals goign on now in the US). Get the gtx 560 and start killing noobs right now!!!
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 3:25:09 PM

starcraft 2 favors nvidia, in fact there is no AA options that I know of for SC2 and amd cards... and the forced AA runs like crap imo... valve games will run flawlessly on a much less of a card so still I would say... gtx 560 hands down
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 3:30:11 PM

^+1 agreed. The Twin Frozr II cooler is great, the msi Twin Frozr II gtx 560 ti is the best choice... not to mention the OC that you will probably get from a card and cooler like that
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February 15, 2011 3:46:54 PM

Thanks for the advice guys! I've decided to go for the GTX560
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 3:50:09 PM

^wise choice, imo
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a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2011 3:52:38 PM

don_lee103720 said:
Thanks for the advice guys! I've decided to go for the GTX560

Have fun!
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February 17, 2011 4:17:47 PM

After lurking around places for 2 days, I finally managed to snag one from a retailer for $249 + tax. Swapping parts are taking me longer than I expected.

Let me know if you guys need any info about the card.
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!