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ATI Radeon HD & Geforce GTX (with cuda cores, Physx)

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March 6, 2011 6:08:07 AM

Hi, in alot of reviews and benchmarks i find that some ati vga out perform some geforce vgas in the same range, like the Radeon HD 6850 and Geforce GTX 460, but the geforce has the Cuda Cores and Physx which suppose to give better image quality in games, so doesnt that count against some more FPS for ATI?! So which is better to choose from?
March 6, 2011 6:15:39 AM

(Sits back and grabs popcorn).

The best one to choose is the one that best suits what you do.
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March 6, 2011 6:39:54 AM

Gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaming :) 
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a c 595 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 6:54:58 AM

kaspro said:
Hi, in alot of reviews and benchmarks i find that some ati vga out perform some geforce vgas in the same range, like the Radeon HD 6850 and Geforce GTX 460, but the geforce has the Cuda Cores and Physx which suppose to give better image quality in games, so doesnt that count against some more FPS for ATI?! So which is better to choose from?

I think you are totally on the right track. PhysX can be thought of as a graphical enhancement. I place it in the same category as antialiasing and anistropic filtering; which lower the FPS, but improve the visuals. Let me ask you, if you had the choice between a card that got 200 FPS without AA or AF and a card that got 150 FPS with AA and AF, which would you choose? I bet you would go for the card that gave the best graphics quality, rather than just pure FPS. For me, it's always better to have the potential for better graphics with more options, even if I don't use them all the time. For the record, I would never say straight up a 6850 beats a GTX 460 (there is a huge discussion someone could make about the benefits of each, stock vs. overclocked, image quality cheats, driver quality, extras, etc.).
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-570-gf1...
http://www.guru3d.com/article/exploring-ati-image-quali...
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...
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a c 171 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 9:22:18 AM

Some flaws in what I've seen mentioned so far. First, CUDA cores does nothing to make games look better. Just because Nvidia has Cuda while AMD uses "stream processors" means nothing. They are the same thing, they perform the same tasks.

Second is that nearly every game can use AA or AF. There are a rare few that can't, but thats what AMDs new MLAA is for. There are currently only around 20games that support PhysX. Many of them are not AAA level games. Others only support Phsyx on a single level or map.

Finally, I don't think it makes things look better. Having bigger explosions is nice, but I've seen many nice ones without it. Having extra papers swirling in the wind like in Batman:AA can help add to the realism of the game, but its not 100% needed. Basically I'm saying its nice to have, but I wouldn't get a lower performing card to get it.
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a c 105 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 2:54:09 PM

Thanks for all those "ati" links. Her's a list of the "20" games that support physx..... there may be more games.....only did a quick search.

http://developer.nvidia.com/object/physx_good_company.h...

and yes, I too like to have as much going on as possible while playing games. After my stint with a 5850 my next purchase WILL be an nvidia product. ATI can't give me the clarity that I like nor can it properly fix the edges of any game I play as well as the green team. The only thing I can see that the 5850 gives is less heat, ( 6950's fail here ) which at the time was a godsend after getting sick of the gtx260's and others. Unfortunately I gotta go back to get what I want. Better graphics, physx ( which you're a fool to deny that it does give better gaming experience ) and settings in the control panel that actually work.
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a c 171 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 4:54:30 PM

Looking at your list I think I know whats going on. Consider that they list games that are on the Xbox360, which has an ATI sourced chip. How does PhysX work on that? Like Havok, PhysX can run on the CPU like many of those games list. Having a PhysX card isn't going to do anything because the game is programed to use the CPU. What you need to make this work is GPU accelerated PhysX. Here is a list of 14 games from Nvidia's website. (Its on two pages, not sure if it lists them all. You'll also have to click on PhysX on the left pane.)

http://www.geforce.com/#/GamesandApps

I said 20 because that how many are listed on the wiki.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PhysX

I'm not the only fool who isn't convinced PhysX is wonderful, you can add Anand Shimpi to that list as well.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/2745/9

I have no idea what you mean by clarity. I went from my 8800GS to my 5750. Nothing looked different, other then my 5750 has more memory so I can use higher levels of AA.
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a c 105 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 5:32:55 PM

Take another look at the list. Only 6 are something other than PC. The "clarity" thing. From my standpoint my games all look better using an nvidia card. They also play smoother from my standpoint. That's all I can tell you. If Shimpi says it's good, I'm in good company... LOL... Thanks for the link. I'll read it later.
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a c 226 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 5:47:18 PM

The killer card right now is the 560 Ti overclocked. It has huge headroom for OC'ing with reviewers and uses getting 20% OC's.

http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/nvidia_asus_gtx...

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The performance was good right out of the box with both of these cards and when it came time to overclock them, I was able to hit over 1GHz on the GF114 cores of both cards and well over 1150MHz on the GDDR5 memory. These bumps in performance from overclocking were not just small bumps, but significant jumps in performance, allowing the GTX 560 Ti from NVIDIA and ASUS to wipe the floor with the HD 6870, its direct competitor. Either AMD has some price drops coming soon or it will be conceding the $250 price point to the performance of the GTX 560 Ti.


Moving up a notch, the 570 and 6870 are very closely matched in single card setups, the 570's have an edge in SLI over the 6970's in CF.

As far as PhysX, call it a "reality upgrade"....it makes things look more real ..... sweeping stack or papers off the desk, they behave as they would in your roomm flags wave like IRL, exploded bits behave like exploded bits, bazookas leave more than a black mark when they hit a wall. It's one of those things ya won't miss until you've used it but as THG says in its review .....

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/batman-arkham-asylu...

Quote:
but I have to admit that the eye candy is a lot of fun to watch. Once you've turned it on, it's not something you'll turn off if your hardware can handle it.


Decide for yaself if it's of interest to you by watching the video here:

http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/batman_arkham_asylu...

Keep in mind that it's up to the devs in how they implement any technology. Some just wanna slap a label on the advertising in the hopes of pushing a mediocre title (i.e Sacred 2), other like Batman and Mafia II do it incredibly well.

CUDA won't turn ya head in gaming but it's certainly not something you wanna do without in CS5 and 3D rendering.
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a c 125 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 6:24:08 PM

http://physxinfo.com/

You can see all 20 current and future PhysX accelerated games at this link.

No other games will use PhysX acceleration. Therefore, it should not be a primary concern. Although as a person who has experienced PhysX first hand in 6 of those games, I will say that it is a very nice feature. I especially liked it in Mafia 2, Cryostasis, and Batman.
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a c 595 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 9:55:16 PM

If anyone caught some of the recent news about the updated Unreal Engine 3, PhysX is featured prominently in what they call: "probably the most licensed game engine used in the industry."
http://www.tomshardware.com/news/DirectX-11-Unreal-Engi...

Among other games, I enjoy Unreal Tournament 3 with PhysX on. After having played it for a couple years without PhysX, I would never play without it again. Body parts go flying, vehicles explode into pieces of shrapnel, and weapons flak bounces off walls; it's very cool, and adds not just eye candy, but more fun.
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a c 171 U Graphics card
March 6, 2011 11:57:02 PM

Quote:
Take another look at the list. Only 6 are something other than PC.


Your missing the point. If even ONE 360 title (or even PS3 if they have a 7800 part which can't process CUDA) is in that list then they are including CPU accelerated games. This is physX which behaves like Havok. It runs on the CPU, and having a PhysX card won't do anything for you. Wolf published a link with the games, perhaps you can find them there.

Quote:
If Shimpi says it's good, I'm in good company... LOL


Read what I wrote again. He wrote that its NOT impressive. Batman:AA was the first game that came out with good PhysX effects. I've been told that the effects in Mafia 2 were good. There are a few other games that don't just include PhysX but make good use of it. As wolf said out of those 20 games he thought six did it really well. My question/problem is why include something thats going to suck power and emit heat for 5+ games? It would be pointless for me because I play zero PhysX hardware accelerated games.
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a b U Graphics card
March 7, 2011 12:39:36 AM

yeah physx is and AWESOME effect.I played through Batman and Mafia 2 without physx on my old ati 4830 and they were rather dull games..I purchased the gtx 275 later and enabled physx and it made a HUGE difference.I just can't think of playing those games without physx.In Batman the way the smoke swirls when you move through it all add to realism.Oh and everyone forgot to mention Just Casue 2.The bokeh filter and gpu water simulation used by CUDA enhanced the eyecandy in the game.
If you want great experience in all games I woul;d get nvidia as all games have great compatibility with them.Nvidia actually paid crytek $2 million so that crysis 2 will run better on their cards.Best get the 460 as there isn't a huge difference between the cards and the added features in the 460 make it worth it.Also its a great overclocker.Yopu can overclock it to get 5850 performance something which the 6850 doesn't have
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March 7, 2011 12:57:29 AM

I agree that NVidia PhysX is beautiful, and looks nicer in most games. BUT, I don't agree that it is a necessary aspect of many games. Matman:AA and MAfia II are th only games i play that support it, and I'm using an AMD 6950 (flashed to 6970) and an NVidia GTX 275 as a dedicated PhysX card. I would recommend using the custom drivers located at http://www.ngohq.com/graphic-cards/17706-hybrid-physx-m.... If you are choosing from scratch, and have never had an NVidia card with PhysX support, I recommend getting the NVidia card. Otherwise, you can use the custom patch for PhysX on AMD GPUs

PhysX, when CPU accelerated, is far worse than GPU accelerated, in FPS. Cuda is rarely used by the majority of people, I only use it to encode videos files into Ipod format. I also feel it isn't as fast as my CPU, but it sure takes the workload off of the CPU, allowing me to do other things on my Radeon 6970/Core i7 920
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March 7, 2011 4:02:35 AM

well guys, that was realy helpfull, so overall, if iam between two cards, ATI & Geforce and in the same range which will run smoother and shows better graphics quality...and should i go for the always cheaper ATI solution?! :) 
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a c 171 U Graphics card
March 7, 2011 7:28:40 AM

Basically I'd consider the Nvidia card only if you play any of those 20 games. Otherwise just buy the cheaper one.
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