I am currently looking to cap off the upgrades on my Dell E521.
AMD Dual Windsor Core 6000+ (3.0GHz)
2GB of G.Skill 240-Pin 800MHz DDR2
Dell 0ct103 Motherboard
BFG 550W PSU
Galaxy Geforce 9500GT
With that rig, I can play Battlefield Bad Company 2 on medium-low settings with a 1280x768 resolution (that may not be the actual resolution, I am away from my PC currently). I am hoping that updating my GPU will last me through the Fall and Winter, where in January I plan to build my first custom. (May need some expertise down the road for that as well). So which is better for Gaming? That Razor GTX 460 or the PowerColor 6850? Price does not matter to me at this moment, I have about 300 dollars to spend and I am required by my Mobo and case to only find a single slot card. My friend tells me Nvidia is great because of PhysX and other 3D features, but it seems the ATI card has more power, so I am looking for more opinions, expertise and knowledge.
The games I play most are Battlefield Bad Company 2, Left 4 Dead 2 and I commonly hook up my PC to my television to watch football games online, like through veetle or channelsurfing. I am also hoping this GPU upgrade will allow me to play upcoming titles like, Red Orchestra 2 and Battlefield 3, smoothly.
Another plan I have is that when I have the money in January to build a new rig, is dual up on which ever card I purchase and utilize SLI or Crossfire.
Any and all help is greatly appreciated and my email is wired to my phone, so I will be prompt with my replies. Thank you all and I love this site. I have visited it for years and learned so much here.
I say go for the 6850. Their video decoding software is better than Nvidia's and it's more powerful for gaming. AMD's card supports HD3D (I think that was what it was called) that also supports 3D but not too many games support it right now. I have the Intel varient of that PC the E520 and I was wondering how you could SLI with that board, mine only has one PCI-E x16 slot?
I agree - go with the HD 6850. This review shows the performance differences, but not that with your slower CPU and memory you should not expect as good of performance as the review shows on the test system:
I have the almost the same system the OP does. It's a BTX case so you're really limited to single slot designs or dual slot coolers sith single slot backplates. I think Powercolor's a good brand they make a lot of niche products for those who need them.
Thank you for your input! I started this thread awhile ago and almost forgot about it. About the SLI / Crossfire, the 0ct103 board only has the one x16 slot, I was considering buying 2 of the 6850s for when I build my first custom.
Another note: I recently received Windows 7 Home Premium 64, so I purchased the Powercolor 6850 and 2 more GB of the G.Skill. I know the results from my rig wont match those from the benchmarks, I am hoping to just be able play at medium settings with no AA or Sync.
Get a CPU upgrade, a single core CPU like your Athlon would be the bottleneck of your entire system, besides AMD CPUs are cheap, I spent ~$200 for my Core 2 Q6700 eight months back. I was looking for post about the Powercolor card and came across this one so decided to answer it.
I wonder if Intel boards are compatable with the E521 since all it is is an AMD version of the E520. If so and you feel up to it you could replace the board with and Intel one and be able to upgrade ta a Q6700 like me.