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Do I really need a high-end card for a 1680x1050 monitor on a new PC?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 18, 2011 7:44:52 PM

Hello,

I've been reading the following article: Best Graphics Cards For the Money: March 2011. I'm buying a new PC (for gaming) in the first week of June, with the following specs (feel welcome to comment):

- i7 2600 (I don't OC, should I leave the option open?)
- Asus P8P67 PRO Rev3.0
- GSkill Kit 8Gb DDR3 1600Mhz Ripjaw X (CL7)
- Seagate 2TB Sata III 64Mb XT (7200rpm)
- Corsair GS-800W

And I was thinking of getting two 2 x Asus Radeon HD 6950 2Gb, but I wondered. Do I need such "power" if I'm using a 1680x1050 resolution monitor? I really want something to last me for 3 or 4 years, but I don't see myself getting a bigger screen. What do you think?
a b U Graphics card
April 18, 2011 8:14:41 PM

6950 1GB or a 560GTX would be far more than enough.
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a c 147 U Graphics card
April 18, 2011 8:26:07 PM

Unless you are going to flash the 6950 2GB cards with a 6970 BIOS, the 1GB version performs pretty much on par with the 2GB. With that being said, 2 of those cards at that resolution would be kind of overkill. You could always get one and add another later. Or just get a single beefy card and don't worry about a dual card setup.

As said above a 6950 1GB or GTX560 would run any game fine at that resolution. Now as far as lasting 3-4 years, that would depend on what settings you are ok with running. I would imagine after 2 years you would want to upgrade if it isn't running the game at the time well enough, but most likely it WILL run them. I usually upgrade every year or so. I just sell off my card on eBay and upgrade to the next best single card.

I would just get a single card that fits your budget and expectations. A GTX570 would run anything maxed on your system. They are $350. But a 6950 or GTX560 are great performers at your resolution. It is all what your budget allows.
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April 18, 2011 8:28:31 PM

spentshells said:
6950 1GB or a 560GTX would be far more than enough.


Thanks :) 

@jay2tall:

I really want to run games the best I can, but every time I read a review they use over-the-top resolutions. I think I'll go for a 570, keeping the Corsair GS-800W in case I opt for SLI in the future. Thank you :) 
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a c 147 U Graphics card
April 18, 2011 9:19:37 PM

A 570 will run everything you need. If some day it doesn't sell it on ebay and put that toward a new one. That's what I do and it's worked out.
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a c 235 U Graphics card
April 18, 2011 9:21:02 PM

my GTX 460 runs every game out there at 1680x1050.

P.S. why so much RAM?
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April 18, 2011 9:31:08 PM

ct1615 said:
my GTX 460 runs every game out there at 1680x1050.

P.S. why so much RAM?


I think I'll stay with only one 8Gb kit (16Gb was really out of greed :p )
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April 18, 2011 9:32:22 PM

Best answer selected by Rorsch.
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a c 230 U Graphics card
April 18, 2011 9:48:24 PM

Rorsch said:
Thanks :) 

@jay2tall:

I really want to run games the best I can, but every time I read a review they use over-the-top resolutions. I think I'll go for a 570, keeping the Corsair GS-800W in case I opt for SLI in the future. Thank you :) 


A GTS 250 or 5670 @ $65 is more than enough at your resolution, Id give the 250 and edge in DX10, but the 5670 is the way to go for DX11 gaming:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-gaming-graphic...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The 570 goes for $335
The factory OC'd 560 (900Mhz) goes for $240 ($215 last week) and is just a few frames short of the 570

You can run twin 560's on a 750 watter
For twin 570's I'd want a 850 watter

Might I suggest a single 560 (900Mhz) and a new monitor ?

$240 GTX 560 (900Mhz) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$170 Asus 1920 x 1080 Monitor http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total $410 .... that's a lot less than the $490 you were originally gonna spend on twin 6950's .... your 800 watt PSU will handle a 2nd 560 later on and here's what ya might expect performance wise (sum of fps in COD-MW, Bad Company 2, Dirt 2, Far Cry 2, Metro 2033, Dawn of Discovery, Crysis Warhead (single card / SL or CF):

460-768 MB (314/592)
6850 (371/634)
6870 (434/701)
6950 (479/751)
6950 Frozr OC (484/759)
560 Ti (455/792)
6970 (526/825)
560 Ti - 900 Mhz (495/862)
570 (524/873)
580 (616/953)
6990 (762/903)
590 (881/982)

And no, you don't need 16GB .... you likely won't benefit from CAS 7 too much until you go go to CF or SLI


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a c 235 U Graphics card
April 18, 2011 9:54:51 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
A GTS 250 or 5670 @ $65 is more than enough at your resolution, Id give the 250 and edge in DX10, but the 5670 is the way to go for DX11 gaming:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-gaming-graphic...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...





the ATI 5670 will only handle games at medium settings at 1680x1050 and the GTS 250 will struggle with newer games like Crysis 2 at extreme resolution. I had a factory OC MSI GTS 250, good card and handled most games at 1680x1050.
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