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Good Mid Range Card

Hi guys. I'm finally leaving the console scene after months of seeing the incredible stuff PC gaming has to offer. But I could use some help choosing a graphics card in the $150 price range.

So far the Radeon 6850, 6790 and GTX460 have my attention. But the thing is that I want a card that'll last me all the way until Battlefield 3 comes out. However, I won't be doing any 1080p gaming (yet... :whistle: ) since I'll most likely be playing on a 1366 by 768 monitor.

Also, I don't want to overclock anything either since I'm afraid that I'll somehow end up burning a hole through my motherboard :lol: But feel free to tell me otherwise.

Oh and lastly, which card is the most future-proof? I read somewhere that last generation cards like the 5000 and 400 series will be phased out in the next year. I want a card that'll last me at least 2 years.
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  1. Hey Chris. Here are a couple of things that should be helpful:

    1) At that resolution (pretty low for the computer scene) you really don't need a whole lot of power to really max out games. An HD 6850 or a GTX 460 would be plenty, and you can find great deals on either of these. I'd recommend you also invest in a larger, higher res monitor- at least 1920x1080, though I strongly prefer 1920x1200 monitors (16:10 aspect ratio instead of the 16:9 on a 1080p). A monitor will probably last you longer than any of the other hardware (graphics cards etc get outdated faster).

    2) Battlefield and other games like (call of duty, etc) it are typically developed for consoles and then ported over to PC. For that reason, they are less intensive on graphics than other titles developed to stress high-end PCs. They still will look better on PC because you can turn up a lot of other settings and a good GPU has so much more power than a console. If you look at some of the graphics card reviews around, you can see that you can get very, very high framerates in similar games at your resolution with all the settings turned up using something like the two cards mentioned.

    3) What are the other specs on your computer? Just want to make sure you're not using a Pentium 2 :) Graphics will make the biggest impact on your performance, but CPU, RAM, etc are also important. You also need to make sure the power supply for your computer can handle the cards you are looking at.
  2. The Sapphire card is out of stock, but you have this HD 5850 for 145$ after MIRs.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814125318
    It will last for a long time at that resolution."Phasing out" does not mean that support is over.It means that you'll not find it in stores anymore, but driver support will be there.

    However, knowing the rest of your system will help.
  3. ^he will find it in stores, but not in big amounts and its production will be over. Also this card will be much stronger than GTX 460 and 6850, probably 460 is for around 190$ now and only 768MB and SE models are that cheap, they are really bad compared to 5850 *over 20% better*, but on this resolution it won't matter that much, because all these cards are capable of running all games maxed out on it, you still will get most of it from 5850 then 6850 and far away 460SE/768MB. Even if you found 460 1GB it'll be a bit worse than 6850, which is 10% behind 5850.
  4. Well the thing is that I haven't built my new PC yet. Right now I'm using a hand-me-down PC my dad gave me. It has a Pentium D with 2 cores at 3.2 GHz with a Radeon 2400 Pro. But I REALLY want to upgrade to Windows 7 Pro 64 bit which I figured would require changing all of the essential hardware in it.

    As for the new hardware, I might get an ASUS M4N68T mobo but I do know I'll be getting a PII x4 955 with 2 GBs of DDR3 ram (Two 1 GB sticks to start off, I'll upgrade to 6 gigs later) with a 550 watt PSU.
  5. Wow we are in the same position lol.

    I have the same res and want the system to play BF3 decently, when it comes.

    What I am choosing to go with is the 5830, this is ~25% less powerful than the 5850 (but in UK it is £35 cheaper ~$50), but because our resolution is so low it should run fine... although I can't really say that for sure about BF3 because it isn't out yet. So may have to get 2 and crossfire to get it running amazingly but I am not PC gaming until then so I am not going to buy it any time soon:D

    Contrary to what Beltzy said, BF3 going to be made for PC and then ported to consoles, so it will be a beast of a game but can't be sure on the specs required yet.

    Go watch the 12 min fault line gameplay on youtube :D 1080p with headphones.


    PSU is more than good enough for a good GPU, but if you need to put in another GPU to boost the power 550 is cutting it close. If you can consider a 600w... only if you think you might need to put in a 2nd GPU at some point in time, if not then 500-550 is fine.
  6. Best answer
    chris4268 said:
    Well the thing is that I haven't built my new PC yet. Right now I'm using a hand-me-down PC my dad gave me. It has a Pentium D with 2 cores at 3.2 GHz with a Radeon 2400 Pro. But I REALLY want to upgrade to Windows 7 Pro 64 bit which I figured would require changing all of the essential hardware in it.

    As for the new hardware, I might get an ASUS M4N68T mobo but I do know I'll be getting a PII x4 955 with 2 GBs of DDR3 ram (Two 1 GB sticks to start off, I'll upgrade to 6 gigs later) with a 550 watt PSU.



    I defiantly agree with the PSU advice. Getting a decent branded 80+ PSU will save you potential headaches further down the line. I'm running a 650W corsair PSU at the moment as i don't ever plan on running 2 cards at once its going to be plenty for anything i want to use. They degrade over time as well so its a good idea to factor that in as well.

    As for the Ram please don't stick with 2 GB its not really enough these days and its a bit daft running a 64 bit system if you don't put 4 GB in it really. Not that its technically wrong, just dosent sit right thats all.

    If you don't upgrade that monitor then i agree stick with 6850/460 performance level cards but you really will notice the difference with a nice 1080p monitor. If a new monitor is on the cards then shoot for a 6950.

    Mactronix :)
  7. Best answer selected by chris4268.
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