Upgrading from an EVGA 8800 GTX - seeking advice.

BUDGET RANGE: $150 After Rebates

USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming - Battlefield 3, NFS: The Run - also some HD Video (movies)

CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY: EVGA 8800 GTX Superclocked; Thermaltake Tough Power 850w power supply (Was running 2x8800 in SLI, but one died finally - then my 680i motherboard followed suit)

OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS: MB: MSI 880GM-E41 AM3 AMD 880G; CPU: AMD Athlon II X3 450 Rana 3.2GHz; MEM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg is preferred, but I'm open to suggestions

PARTS PREFERENCES: Partial to nVidia / EVGA due to some bad experiences with ATI - but I'm open to suggestions.

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe- unlocked the fourth core on my processor, and some mild OC experience.

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: I have in the past, but not with this current motherboard (will be upgrading in the next 1-2 years)

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Currently 1680x1050 - but my 7 year old monitor is about to crap on me, so I'll likely be getting a new one soon.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Primary gaming habits are Battlefield 3 and NFS: The Run, but I also dabble in Team Fortress 2 (which the 8800 does quite well) and many other STEAM powered games. Not locked into a manufacturer, but I love EVGA's support and warranty. I've done a bit of research, and - at least on paper - my 8800 GTX performs up to par with many video cards out already.

I'm primarily considering a the EVGA nVidia GTX 550 TI - but trying to decide if the extra $100 is worth it for the 560 Ti, or if I should consider ATI (I've had a lot of problems with the drivers in the past (Radeon 9800 time frame) so I'm squeamish about ATI, but not ruling them out)

*edited to fix link to 550 ti Card.

Any suggestions are welcome.

7 answers Last reply
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  1. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130749 $149

    I don't think 560 ti will give you good times, because I have a feeling that this Rana processor will bottleneck.
  2. Cool suggestion. I do understand about the bottlenecking, though - it's not of major concern as I eventually plan on upgrading motherboard / processor combo. I'm looking for something that's going to offer some future expansion.

    Will the 460 out perform the 550 ti? (The 550ti is $114 with rebates, and while $35-40 isn't a lot to worry about, it makes or breaks my budget at the moment.)
  3. Yes, GTX 460 is a different level than GTX 550 ti. You can see comparison in this review article http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/graphics/2011/03/15/nvidia-geforce-gtx-550-ti-1gb-review/1 that GTX 460 1GB is at most cases faster by some notable margin. Just make sure you take a look at the GTX 460 1GB (not the 768GB version).

    If you are going to upgrade next time with a processor and motherboard combo I am assuming that you are going to upgrade in H1 2012 and at that time you will see that new line of GPU that will give you more offer of some future expansion.
  4. Refillable - that has to be one of the more enlightening articles I've read. I appreciate the help.

    Here's the skinny on my situation - I'm looking for the best bang for my buck. Money is going to be tight for the next 3-4 years while my wife finishes her RN program. So I'm just looking to keep my rig to where it can play most things out (even if it's on min settings) until I can drop the coin on a new build for both of us. (I'm lucky enough to have a wife who games, too)

    My next CPU upgrade will likely be to one of the six core AMD processors - just whatever the max my motherboard will take, and then bump it to 8gb of RAM instead of 4, and add some storage once prices come down. (currently have 2x 74. gb WD Raptors and one ~350gb storage drive. I'm likely to convert the two Raptors to SSD. Not too worried about capacity, I have a NAS unit that has 2tb on it and three internal expansion bays available)

    The 460 sounds like it may be the way to go for now - at least now I have a goal to save up for.

  5. If you can afford a GTX 460 1GB I think it's better than getting 550 ti instead. And if you are upgrading to a X6 1100T Thuban series you can go with 560 ti no problem,as you said before you want a 560 ti.
  6. Yeah, but I'm having a hard time justifying the extra ~$100 for the 560 ti. I'm not sure how much of a performance boost (real life) it's going to have / I'm going to notice coming from an 8800 GTX.
  7. It should be noticeably faster, but if you are upgrading 560 ti you will see more.
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