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Graphics card noob looking for recommendations ~$150

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April 28, 2011 7:58:55 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Within a month.

BUDGET RANGE: ~$150

USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: After Effects, Vegas Pro, CoD, other gaming, transcoding raw HD footage.

CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY: In process of building system - Waiting to buy PSU based on graphics card suggestions.

OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS: i5-2500k, P67 Pro R3 mobo, 8GB DDR3.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com & microcenter.com

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA

PARTS PREFERENCES: Open to all suggestions.

OVERCLOCKING: Yes

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Eventually.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Want to play most games on at least medium settings.

Hey everyone, I'm in the process of building a new PC for myself and I can't figure out worth a darn which graphics card I should get.

I've been leaning more towards ATI and this 5770 listed below, but I'm not sure if it's going to get me what I want.

MSI Hawk Radeon HD 5770 1GB w/ Twin Frozr II Cooling

I'm not really a hardcore gamer, but it would nice to have some extra GPU power for whenever that next great game comes out.

Looking forward to your suggestions!

-Leetsauce

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a c 124 U Graphics card
April 28, 2011 9:35:38 PM

Leetsauce said:
Now why would you recommend a GTX over a radeon?

Also, how big of an an improvement is the MSI GTX 460 over the 5770?

I agree with Ethel. If your goal is to eventually go with two cards you're better off with the SLI option. I've had a crossfire and SLI setup and the catalyst drivers stink with crossfire (you get high fps, but you have to put up with all sorts of other issues). SLI, on the other hand, works great.
a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2011 10:00:43 PM

If he is not a hardcore gamer, I am not sure recommending SLI or Crossfire is the best advice. I would recommend a one card solution.

Since you have a very nice cpu and are at 1080p, I would think about adding a few buck and getting a card that will handle the times you might want to play games at higher settings while staying close to budget.

Have a look at this HD 6850 ===> $155 w/rebate or ===> $155 w/rebate plus free ship
April 28, 2011 10:25:10 PM

Embra said:
If he is not a hardcore gamer, I am not sure recommending SLI or Crossfire is the best advice. I would recommend a one card solution.

Since you have a very nice cpu and are at 1080p, I would think about adding a few buck and getting a card that will handle the times you might want to play games at higher settings while staying close to budget.

Have a look at this HD 6850 ===> $155 w/rebate or ===> $155 w/rebate plus free ship


That 6850 has some serious horsepower! I know Asus makes good cards, but I've never really heard much about sapphire.

April 28, 2011 10:33:10 PM

Save your money and get something better...
April 28, 2011 10:45:12 PM

Bigmac80 said:
Save your money and get something better...


"get something better..." Hmm, sure would be nice to know what that something better is. :na: 
April 28, 2011 10:47:54 PM

If you do a lot of coverting, go with Nvidia GTX because of CUDA. The speed gonna be 20x different because CUDA core is way powerful than CPU.

Radeon(ATI or AMD) got similar feature call AVIVO but the driver mess up( not work well). AVIVO will not work in Window 64 bit.

Since you do alot of Vega software stuff and transcoding HD video, go with Nvidia.

April 28, 2011 10:54:03 PM

kimyeang88 said:
If you do a lot of coverting, go with Nvidia GTX because of CUDA. The speed gonna be 20x different because CUDA core is way powerful than CPU.

Radeon(ATI or AMD) got similar feature call AVIVO but the driver mess up( not work well). AVIVO will not work in Window 64 bit.

Since you do alot of Vega software stuff and transcoding HD video, go with Nvidia.


This is a very interesting feature kimyeang, although on the 2nd gen i5 proccesors it has quick sync video so it will already accelerate video conversion, not sure if the CUDA core can up that any further or not.

EDIT: Just realized I can't use quick sync video if I'm using discrete graphics and a P67 mobo. :( 
April 28, 2011 11:05:00 PM

Leetsauce said:
This is a very interesting feature kimyeang, although on the 2nd gen i5 proccesors it has quick sync video so it will already accelerate video conversion, not sure if the CUDA core can up that any further or not.

well there definetly will be a difference between the 5770 and the 460, the 460 WILL make the video editing even faster, even if the i5 makes it fast already. As for games the 460 is quite a lot faster than a 5770, and so is the 768mb version.
April 28, 2011 11:05:27 PM

Leetsauce said:
This is a very interesting feature kimyeang, although on the 2nd gen i5 proccesors it has quick sync video so it will already accelerate video conversion, not sure if the CUDA core can up that any further or not.

well there definetly will be a difference between the 5770 and the 460, the 460 WILL make the video editing even faster, even if the i5 makes it fast already. As for games the 460 is quite a lot faster than a 5770, and so is the 768mb version.:) 
April 28, 2011 11:36:25 PM

Hey newegg has a HD 5850 which is better than the HD 6850 for 139.00 free ship no rebate. This might be a good card for you
April 29, 2011 1:04:25 AM

mischieffrk said:
well there definetly will be a difference between the 5770 and the 460, the 460 WILL make the video editing even faster, even if the i5 makes it fast already. As for games the 460 is quite a lot faster than a 5770, and so is the 768mb version.


It's just that I know virtually nothing about nvidia's lineup, or what features their cards have, which is why I'm wondering if I should go with ATI.


mlcaouette said:
Hey newegg has a HD 5850 which is better than the HD 6850 for 139.00 free ship no rebate. This might be a good card for you


I'm failing to see how the 5850 is better then the 6850, their the same submodel except that one is their tier 5 product and the other is on the highest tier 6. Technically speaking the 6850 should be far superior...
April 29, 2011 11:03:36 AM

well that all depends on how much gaming you will be doing. The difference between the 768mb and the 1gb will be virtually insignificant with video editing according to a benchmark. So the only difference will be seen in games. The 1gb is much better for your resolution. I would go for the 1gb version just because i only game, and i would get major buyers remorse always thinking what if i had the 1gb version. Good luck with your decision:) 
April 29, 2011 11:07:02 AM

well that all depends on how much gaming you will be doing. The difference between the 768mb and the 1gb will be virtually insignificant with video editing according to a benchmark. So the only difference will be seen in games. The 1gb is much better for your resolution. I would go for the 1gb version just because i only game, and i would get major buyers remorse always thinking what if i had the 1gb version. Good luck with your decision:) 
a c 376 U Graphics card
April 29, 2011 11:34:24 AM

Leetsauce said:
I'm failing to see how the 5850 is better then the 6850, their the same submodel except that one is their tier 5 product and the other is on the highest tier 6. Technically speaking the 6850 should be far superior...
AMD pointlessly messed with their numbering scheme in the latest generation. What should have been the HD6850/6870 in the old numbering scheme are called the HD6950/6970 now for some reason. So yeah, the HD6850/HD6870 are weaker than the HD5850/HD5870 respectively. They also just pulled a move out of the old Nvidia playbook with the recently released HD6750/70. They are the exact same cards as the HD5750/70. Then on the low end they did things right with the HD6450/6570/6670 all being nice upgrades over the HD5450/5570/5670. So to sum up; depending on price segment the HD6000 cards are either weaker, exactly the same or more powerful than their HD5000 counterparts.
Anyways here is a recent performance chart for current cards to give you a good lay of the land:

So the $140 HD5850 on newegg is by far the best deal in your price range at the moment for gaming.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
That said Vegas Pro uses CUDA and while After Effects doesn't at the moment Premier Pro CS5 does and the next version of After Effects may as well. Considering those are the top priorities in your list you would probably be best off with an Nvidia card.

mischieffrk said:
So the only difference will be seen in games. The 1gb is much better for your resolution.
The 768mb card is less than 10% faster than the 768mb card in gaming at 1920x1200 on average as you can see in the above chart. Certainly a difference but nothing worthy of "much better" IMO.
April 29, 2011 11:38:15 AM

jyjjy said:
AMD pointlessly messed with their numbering scheme in the latest generation. What should have been the HD6850/6870 in the old numbering scheme are called the HD6950/6970 now for some reason. So yeah, the HD6850 and HD6870 are weaker than the HD5850 and HD5870 respectively. Here is a recent performance chart for current cards to give you a good lay of the land;
http://tpucdn.com/reviews/AMD/HD_6790/images/perfrel_1920.gif
So the $140 HD5850 on newegg is by far the best deal in your price range at the moment for gaming.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
That said Vegas Pro uses CUDA and while After Effects doesn't at the moment Premier Pro CS5 does and the next version of After Effects may as well. Considering those are the top priorities in your list you would probably be best off with an Nvidia card.

The 768mb card is less than 10% faster than the 768mb card in gaming at 1920x1200 on average as you can see in the above chart. Certainly a difference but nothing worthy of "much better" IMO.


Thanks for the info jyjjy! I'll probably end up going with the GTX 460 1GB, so that way if I ever do SLI it will completely kill. :na: 

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a c 376 U Graphics card
April 29, 2011 11:57:58 AM
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Yeah, especially if you intend to SLI in the future the 1gb card is a good idea. When using SLI the memory is redundant rather than pooled. So the effective memory stays the same when adding a second card while the processing power goes way up. 768mb is acceptable for one GTX 460 but when adding a second it is going to limit the processors more than you would like at high resolutions(and there's no point in SLI at low resolutions.)
If you are going for a GTX 460 I would look for one with nice cooling as the card can overclock a very large amount if you are interested in such. The MSI cards you linked are good choices although I would save $25 by going with the cheaper 1gb Hawk and just overclock it more yourself. You'll get better results anyway.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
The Asus DirectCU is also a very nice card and a good deal.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
April 29, 2011 1:37:50 PM

jyjjy said:
Yeah, especially if you intend to SLI in the future the 1gb card is a good idea. When using SLI the memory is redundant rather than pooled. So the effective memory stays the same when adding a second card while the processing power goes way up. 768mb is acceptable for one GTX 460 but when adding a second it is going to limit the processors more than you would like at high resolutions(and there's no point in SLI at low resolutions.)
If you are going for a GTX 460 I would look for one with nice cooling as the card can overclock a very large amount if you are interested in such. The MSI cards you linked are good choices although I would save $25 by going with the cheaper 1gb Hawk and just overclock it more yourself. You'll get better results anyway.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
The Asus DirectCU is also a very nice card and a good deal.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Ah! Excellent! That will definitely save me some money. Thanks!
April 29, 2011 1:39:56 PM

Best answer selected by Leetsauce.
a c 271 U Graphics card
April 29, 2011 2:08:43 PM

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