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[gpu upgrade] $250-300

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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November 7, 2011 11:47:28 PM

I would like to upgrade my 4870 to something faster and less noisy.

The 3 y.o. rig I currently have is

22" 1680x1050 display
HD 4870
Phenom II x3 720 @ stock 2.8Ghz
4Gb ddr2 800Mhz memory
Asrock A780 full HD microATX mobo
530W PSU


I'd like to be able to play games like RIFT/GW2/starwars on close to max setting, as well as shogun2 and civ5. I plan to stick to 1680x1050 single monitor gaming set up. I might add a second monitor, but for browsing purposes only.


My budget is around $250-300, so I was thinking a 6950. Is it worth upgrading the gpu or should I go ahead and build a new computer?


thanks!

More about : gpu upgrade 250 300

a b U Graphics card
November 7, 2011 11:50:14 PM

6790 will do the job at 1680 x 1050 and even 1920 x 1080 although you might have to lower details in more recent and more demanding games.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
November 7, 2011 11:53:43 PM

HD 6970/50 sometimes are overkill for such resolution, and max out all the games easily even with Metro 2033 and Crysis 2 (the most demanding games ever)

So you're fine with either.
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November 7, 2011 11:55:58 PM

Thanks for the replies!

What about bottle necks? People often site that the cpu is too slow, etc. Would mine be bottlenecking the cards you suggested? (have no idea what bottlenecks are from a technical point of view)
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a c 143 U Graphics card
November 7, 2011 11:59:36 PM

You get a CPU bottleneck when the CPU is not able to handle the game, or you have excess of GPU power. For the P II x3, it's so great and most modern games don't utilize more than 2/3 cores.

You might get a bottleneck when you CF the GPU in the future.
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a b U Graphics card
November 8, 2011 12:00:29 AM

Bump that cpu up to 3, 3.2 if your concerned with it. But you will have more of a bottleneck running a powerful gpu like a 6950 at your resolution.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
November 8, 2011 12:06:04 AM

@ gnomio
I ran all my games @ 2.8 GHz. No bottlenecks.

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November 8, 2011 12:08:10 AM

I see. Thanks for all the replies!
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a b U Graphics card
November 8, 2011 12:08:12 AM

ilysaml said:
@ gnomio
I ran all my games @ 2.8 GHz. No bottlenecks.

With what gpu at what resolution?
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a c 143 U Graphics card
November 8, 2011 12:09:00 AM

Don't you see me signature ? @1080P with HD 6950 2 GB
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a b U Graphics card
November 8, 2011 12:28:44 AM

ilysaml said:
Don't you see me signature ? @1080P with HD 6950 2 GB

yeah thats 1080p. drop a resolution and see if it doesnt bottleneck
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a b U Graphics card
November 8, 2011 12:34:46 AM

1080 is more GPU dependent than CPU. Lower resolutions, CPU matters more. Managed to play SC2 Ultra at 1024x768 with my core2 quad but at 1080p, like 30 fps on medium.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
November 8, 2011 12:40:47 AM

@ gnomio
Do some google search on CPU/GPU bottlenecks, anyway i'll give you some clarifications;-

Basically at low resolutions your GPU isn't working that hard so it's more how many frames can your CPU push though. As your resolution/detail/AA is increased though, the GPU has to work harder and harder to keep up with the CPU and eventually becomes the limiting factor.

Low resolutions means 1024x768/1280x not 1680x with everything maxed out.

The OP might not get the maximum FPS he supposed to get, but this is another thing to discuss and has nothing to do with a CPU bottleneck.
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