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Looking for a new video card

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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September 20, 2011 1:33:49 AM

Somewhere around 200-300 $
Maybe the 6950 1GB with firmware hack ;) 
But the real matter for me is if this setup is powerful enough for this kind of card...
Also I heard the 2.1 cards in 2.0 is not the best combo
so i really want a 2.0 version...

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: 1-2 weeks

USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming and... gaming

CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY: 4870 512, TT 850W

OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS:
CPU Type QuadCore AMD Phenom X4 Black Edition 9950, 3200 MHz (16 x 200)
Motherboard Name DFI LANParty DK 790FXB-M2RS(H) (3 PCI, 3 PCI-E x16(2.0), 4 DDR2 DIMM, Audio, Gigabit LAN)
Motherboard Chipset AMD 790FX, AMD K10
System Memory 4088 MB (DDR2-1066 DDR2 SDRAM)
Main HDDs RAID 0 WD 150GB Raptors
OS Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: any .ca

PARTS PREFERENCES: big ATI fan

OVERCLOCKING: Yes but not the GPU (had a bad experience)

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050

More about : video card

a c 143 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 2:04:07 AM

welcome to the forum, you've picked the right card for your rig a HD 6950 1 Gb will be good choice as long as you're going to be gaming at 1680× the 2 Gb version would help only if you're going to exceed 1080P resolution as it requires more VRAM.
what is TT btw (Thermaltake)???
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September 20, 2011 2:07:50 AM

ilysaml said:
what is TT btw (Thermaltake)???

Yes :D 

Thx for your quick answer.
But if I had a bigger monitor would the rest keep up ?

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a c 171 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 2:07:50 AM

2.1 in 2.0 works fine. i dont think there are even any 2.1 motherboards available. you wont find a 2.0 card unless you buy something from the ati 4xxx series, everything 5xxx 6xxx is pcie 2.1.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 2:11:49 AM

yes the rest will keep up, but you're going to have to get the 2gb version if you plan to game above 1920× 1080 and i forgot to talk about PCIe 2.1 and 2.0
in addition to the iam2thecrowe saying, there are no differences between 2.1 and 2.0 actually they are the same, from Wikipedia

"PCI Express 2.1 supports a large proportion of the management, support, and troubleshooting systems planned for full implementation in PCI Express 3.0. However, the speed is the same as PCI Express 2.0. Most motherboards sold currently come with PCI Express 2.1 connectors."
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 2:18:04 AM

What model number is your processor again? is it the Phenom ii x4 955 or the first gen Phenom 9950?

Everything else seems good expect for the processor.If it's a first gen Phenom your going to need to O.C. it.
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September 20, 2011 2:20:25 AM

yea first gen... is 3.2 too slow for cards better then 6950 or even the 6950 ?
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 2:57:12 AM

Yah it is.It will bottleneck it.

It's a BE isn't it? Just get a good CPU cooler and try to hit 3.8ghz+.
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September 20, 2011 3:02:51 AM

sux xD ...
I have a freezer 64 Pro... stock its running @2.6 !!
I guess ill try to boost the voltage beyond 1.4

Also... I've been under a rock for the last 2 years... is it true i could drop AM3 CPU on AM2+ socket !? then maybe i'll upgrade that too :S
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a c 143 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 3:19:39 AM

wait, don't be in a hurry!!! your CPU won't be bottlenecking anything, look at this thread carefully and read what i said
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/325995-33-video-card-...
simply, just grab the HD 6950 and solve your CPU problems with a Zambezi during Xmas :D 

@ purple i guess it's not your day, you're giving too much inappropriate :) 
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 3:57:56 AM

Yes it is possible.But you will have to see if your mobo's manufacturer released an AM3 BIOS update.And I'm pretty sure you will be able to because you have a 790FX chipset.

DFI doesn't look like a good company.I am having a hard time navigating and looking for your mobo on their website.
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a b U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 3:58:03 AM

ilysaml said:
wait, don't be in a hurry!!! your CPU won't be bottlenecking anything, look at this thread carefully and read what i said
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/325995-33-video-card-...
simply, just grab the HD 6950 and solve your CPU problems with a Zambezi during Xmas :D 

@ purple i guess it's not your day, you're giving too much inappropriate :) 

I agree to wait as you will still see a performance increase but to get yourself BD and an am3+ board for Xmas. Im still waiting for my BD.......
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 4:03:33 AM

ilysaml said:
wait, don't be in a hurry!!! your CPU won't be bottlenecking anything, look at this thread carefully and read what i said
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/325995-33-video-card-...
simply, just grab the HD 6950 and solve your CPU problems with a Zambezi during Xmas :D 

@ purple i guess it's not your day, you're giving too much inappropriate :) 



How is that wrong info?

Just because you said it doesn't mean your right.Their are 3 other people in that thread who disagree with you.

Upgrading to a Bulldozer CPU is good but would require the OP to have to upgrade much more than just the CPU.Since the OP already has all the hardware it just seems more logical to go with an AM3 CPU after a BIOS update because it would cost a lot less money and I'm sure it will fit their needs.
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a b U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 4:14:15 AM

Listen up OP, both of these options are totally viable. one being cost effective and the other taking more money but giving you newer tech. The cost effective option will meet your needs as purple said. Its your money and totally up to you
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 4:27:17 AM

I'm sorry if I got off topic a little bit.All I was trying to say is that your current CPU will bottleneck a 6950 unless you can O.C. it to a higher speed.ilysaml was giving false info.
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a b U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 5:11:08 AM

purple stank said:
I'm sorry if I got off topic a little bit.All I was trying to say is that your current CPU will bottleneck a 6950 unless you can O.C. it to a higher speed.ilysaml was giving false info.

Both of you had good options, you are trying to look out for OP's wallet and ilysaml just mistook your intentions and mistakenly told you that you were wrong. Like I said earlier both of your options are totally viable, with OP's wallet at stake the decision being his
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 6:02:29 AM

I agree.
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a c 171 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 6:38:07 AM

As I said in that other thread, I wouldn't bother getting GTX560TI or 6950 is you have a PhI. The PhIIs have a hard enough time keeping up with the i7s review sites test with. If you are using a PhI which clocks horrible, I don't see how you'll get the performance your expecting.

As mentioned, grab this and upgrade later if can. If upgrading your CPU isn't happening for awhile, I'd get a weaker card.
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 6:57:32 AM

The board looks like it supports AM3 CPU's because it has a 790 chipset but DFI doesn't look to be a knowledgeable company.They barely even have a website so it makes finding a BIOS update for this motherboard a lost cause.Maybe you should try to give DFI a call and see if they can give you some more advice on that.

I would suggest getting a cheap Phenom ii x4 955 so you don't bottleneck the 6950 and wait until the C3 revisons of Bulldozer/Zembezi to upgrade to the AM3+ socket.By then you will have enough money for the appropriate upgrades and the C3 revision will likely yield better results.And, as always, prices are always really expensive for new products when they first come onto the market.They will probably be cheaper by then.
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September 20, 2011 12:39:00 PM

Thx for all this input i never expected so much help... thx again
Sadly DFI stopped supporting/producing their LAN Party mb series... you guys never heard of them before !?
This sux I didnt want to change EVERYthing...
I guess I will after all this setup is getting old... ...
What would you recommend that is not overkill for 6950 ?
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a c 143 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 12:52:22 PM

purple stank said:
How is that wrong info?

Just because you said it doesn't mean your right.Their are 3 other people in that thread who disagree with you.

Upgrading to a Bulldozer CPU is good but would require the OP to have to upgrade much more than just the CPU.Since the OP already has all the hardware it just seems more logical to go with an AM3 CPU after a BIOS update because it would cost a lot less money and I'm sure it will fit their needs.

who disagrees with me ? when i mentioned Bulldozer i didn't mention upgrading it with the same 790Fx chipset, all i said enjoy Bulldozer with Xmas
and it's not logic to go with AM3 CPU while he can get an AM3+ CPU
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a c 143 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 12:58:28 PM

purple stank said:
I'm sorry if I got off topic a little bit.All I was trying to say is that your current CPU will bottleneck a 6950 unless you can O.C. it to a higher speed.ilysaml was giving false info.

i wasn't.. based on what you're judging that a 9950 BE (which can go easily to 3.0 / 3.2 with a good cpu cooler) can't handle a GPU like HD 6950?
what i said in the other thread is that a phenom 1 CPU could handle a GPU like 4890 or 4870 X2, so couldn't that CPU handle a GPU like HD 6950?
Again, he runs a single with a Quad Core CPU runs @ 2.6 which can be overclocked higher ? where is the bottleneck ?
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a c 143 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 1:06:59 PM

HextorQC said:
Thx for all this input i never expected so much help... thx again
Sadly DFI stopped supporting/producing their LAN Party mb series... you guys never heard of them before !?
This sux I didnt want to change EVERYthing...
I guess I will after all this setup is getting old... ...
What would you recommend that is not overkill for 6950 ?

in short, you'll be happy if you buy the HD 6950 and no lag of performance will occur. benchmarks even proved that any game is still playable with just 2 cores.
if you wanna wait, just wait and upgrade the whole system, AM3+ chipset / AM3+ CPU / GPU / 1866 MHz RAM
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a c 214 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 1:16:24 PM

It's logical money wise.The goal is to get it to where the 6950 wouldn't get bottlenecked and it would be simplier to get a Phenom ii x4 since the Mobo already supports it and the OP wouldn't have to buy new RAM or a new Mobo.But the Mobo doesn't support BIOS updates anymore.So since the OP has to upgrade everything now then a AM3+ seems like the only route.

The 6950 is more powerful than the 4870x2.And in fact I wouldn't be surprised if the 4870x2 was held back by the First gen Phenom's.The problem with the First Gen Phenom's and the Core 2 Quad is the architiecture.They are just to slow by todays standards to keep up with fast cards like the 6950.Look at it this way, you have a V12 engine from the 80's and a V12 engine from 2010.Their still the same thing but the 2010 V12 will be faster because it has more advancements and improvements.
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a c 171 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 1:22:19 PM

Totally agreed. Might be the same, the the 9950 just can't cut it anymore. It is at best like Q6600, OC'd just below the Q9950. A far cry from what Intel can put up these days. Consider that the i3 2400 can put up better frame rates then the 955. How do you expect the 9950 to compete?
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a c 143 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 6:44:09 PM

a Core 2 Extreme CPU equals a performance of a Phenom X4 or X6 based on gaming and some multi core applications
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/48?vs=88
so will you say that a Core 2 Extreme will bottleneck the GPU because it's old generation and old architecture ?

HD 4870X2 is not comparable with HD 6950 but is comparable with HD 5850/5870
the question needed to be asked, does the game mostly depend on the GPu or the CPu or both together ? cuz the answer would be some games are more GPU intensive the CPU and others are CPU more intensive than GPU.

let's get back on track and focus on the Phenom and Phenom II, check the following link, phenom 1 still more benefit able in some multi core applications
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/21?vs=88
Phenom VS Phenom II, Phenom II are using 45nm technology, more cache, native support for DDR3 , less TDP which gives more head for overclocking but all of this doesn't matter (as a temporarily solution for OP) as the CPU frequency is the determinant factor (3.2 vs 2.6) so as i said above if he just give a little overclock to 3.0 or 3.2 he should be just fine
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September 20, 2011 7:20:40 PM

Best answer selected by HextorQC.
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September 20, 2011 7:23:17 PM

thx again for all your support :D 
Like I said I am already running @ 3.2
Games I want to play with my next Video card are BF3 CoD:MW3 and Diablo III
I know I won't be able to max out BF3 but the important is that CoD looks good and I doubt that Diablo III will be as heavy
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a c 271 U Graphics card
September 20, 2011 7:27:03 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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