Completely lost as to what GPU I should purchase

Budget: $150-$300

Resolution: 1920x1080

Need help picking out a GPU. I'm willing to spend up to $300 but really just want the best price/performance. I was gonna go with a 5850 for $150 but now they're out of stock. Then I was gonna get a 6950 2GB and unlock it but I cant find any unlockable models. I would prefer NVIDIA over ATI as I've heard ATI has driver/compatibility issues. And I'd rather not order from newegg since they charge my state tax. Also open to SLI/Crossfire if the value is there. CPU is i5 2500K if that matters.

Any input is greatly appreciated!
8 answers Last reply
More about completely lost purchase
  1. All 6950 2GB can have unlocked shaders, and then you just overclock to 6970 levels, its safer and more reliable.

    What is your power supply?
  2. http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=6637541&CatId=1483

    That's the PSU I was planning on getting, I haven't ordered any of my parts yet though so I can change it.

    I thought that only the older 6950 reference models with a dual BIOS switch could be unlocked. Can the newer ones be unlocked too? This is what I'd probably get: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=322873&CatId=7005
  3. The newer ones can be unlocked. They just don't have the backup. If you have a older card as a back up or onboard video then it's not a huge issue as you could then still reflash the card even if something goes wrong(not that anything should go wrong.)
    Even with the sales tax you mention from Newegg I would still get this PSU instead;
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371044
    It has more power on the +12v rail and no mail in rebate to deal with.
  4. First thing first, this GPU is based on standard clock settings. Second, what is lagging down this card is it's warranty. Thrid, the purpose this GPU for, it's medium gaming or hardcore gaming?

    As for unlocking cores, those who can 'unlock' are normally for first batch for the GPU. I personally suggest that you made a more detail research. Why i said liked that, this is because if your brought GPU has no clear CMOS switch and you tend to unlock it, you will kaput your GPU.
  5. http://www.hisdigital.com/UserFiles/product/3625_008_1_1600.jpg ( zoom it to see properly )

    The card you choose what i thing is non capable of clearing the CMOS. Thus, i do recommended other major brands like ASUS, Gigabyte, MSI, Sapphire tech and etc for stock card and slightly OCed cards.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_AMD_graphics_processing_units
    For unlocking the card, when refering to wikipedia, the first batch of Radeon 69XX series is Dec 15, 2010 for reference cards. From there, what we can expected is that the first batch of 6950 for vendors like ASUS and Gigabyte are 1-2 weeks in the market late.

    After 1-2 weeks, will be early Jan for first batch of 6950 but now is late May which is too late to buy first batch or out of stock for first batch. This is because just when the 6950 release to the market, everyone brought so hurry since it unlocks.

    Last thing, if you insisted to do, just cross your finger and wished you can success while you are unlocking.
  6. get this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814125372&cm_re=6950-_-14-125-372-_-Product

    cant get much better bang for buck unless you get the 5850 ofc.

    EDIT: also a good nvidia option http://secure.newegg.com/Shopping/ShoppingCart.aspx?Submit=view

    GTX 560 TI for 189.99 after rebate.
  7. Technoart said:
    First thing first, this GPU is based on standard clock settings. Second, what is lagging down this card is it's warranty. Thrid, the purpose this GPU for, it's medium gaming or hardcore gaming?

    As for unlocking cores, those who can 'unlock' are normally for first batch for the GPU. I personally suggest that you made a more detail research. Why i said liked that, this is because if your brought GPU has no clear CMOS switch and you tend to unlock it, you will kaput your GPU.

    Technoart said:
    http://www.hisdigital.com/UserFiles/product/3625_008_1_1600.jpg ( zoom it to see properly )

    The card you choose what i thing is non capable of clearing the CMOS. Thus, i do recommended other major brands like ASUS, Gigabyte, MSI, Sapphire tech and etc for stock card and slightly OCed cards.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_AMD_graphics_processing_units
    For unlocking the card, when refering to wikipedia, the first batch of Radeon 69XX series is Dec 15, 2010 for reference cards. From there, what we can expected is that the first batch of 6950 for vendors like ASUS and Gigabyte are 1-2 weeks in the market late.

    After 1-2 weeks, will be early Jan for first batch of 6950 but now is late May which is too late to buy first batch or out of stock for first batch. This is because just when the 6950 release to the market, everyone brought so hurry since it unlocks.

    Last thing, if you insisted to do, just cross your finger and wished you can success while you are unlocking.

    You really shouldn't try to give advice if you aren't knowledgeable about the subject at hand. If you are interested in the topic I would direct you to this article and the 103 page discussion of it linked at the bottom;
    http://www.techpowerup.com/articles/overclocking/vidcard/159
  8. http://www.techpowerup.com/articles/overclocking/vidcard/159

    So based on this link I could unlock any HD 6950, reference card or not, with Radeon Bios Editor, correct?
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