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Best Video Card under $200 ? Best performance vs Value ?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 12, 2012 11:17:53 PM

hey guys,

One last piece to my build.

I need a video card. My budget is $200 or less. $150 really... lol.

I will probably upgrade this card in 12 months time and use it for a HTPC when I do... so it will live on.

I need a card that can do HTPC duties with ease... and do some light gaming.

My current new build is:

CoolerMaster COSMOS II Ultratower Case
OCZ Vertex3 MAX IOPS 120GB SSD
Intel 2600k i7 CPU (Will OC it)
Asus Z68 LGA1155 DELUXE motherboard
G.SKILL RIPJAWZ X series PC12800 1.5v 1600mhz 4x4GB (16GB total DDR3)
RoseWill Lightning Series 1000watt PSW
2 Velociraptors RAID 0
5 WD Green 2TB
2 Samsung F4's 1TB
2 Samsung F3 1TB
Asus BluRay Writer
Asus BluRay Reader
WD USB 3.0 external 3TB

That probably all you need to know for now...

I need a matching performance video card for light gaming and heavy movie playback and HTPC use.

Under $200 for sure. $150 or less is best.

Help me please!
January 13, 2012 12:06:52 AM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PowerColor AX6870 1GBD5-2DH Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity
17% off w/ promo code HARDOCPX111C, ends 1/17



vs



http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
XFX Double D HD-687A-ZDFC Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

Thoughts?

is the top powercolor model the best value and performance for $150 ?

It only has 2 year warranty... but I will live it if dies after that and I am screwed.

On other hand.. the XFX double D is about same price with Lifetime warranty. Is the warranty worth $10 ? Is the performance the same?
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a c 181 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 12:32:32 AM

XFX is the one to get because of the life time warranty and they have good customer service. It is too bad that Evga doesn't have one on newegg. And I don't even knoe if they make them. Nice rig you got going on there.
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January 13, 2012 12:36:55 AM

is XFX worth the extra money?

It is $20-$30 more
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a c 181 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 12:42:47 AM

Mfusick said:
is XFX worth the extra money?

It is $20-$30 more


Yes to have the peace of mind knowing if anything goes wrong with it you can get another one with out having to buy another one.
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January 13, 2012 12:46:25 AM

but the other comes with 2 years... and I probably would have a new one by then...

I get new PC every 2 anyways.. and sometimes upgrade my card before that..

depending on the value I see
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a c 194 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 1:02:24 AM

You say "HTPC and light gaming..." You'll need to define "light gaming." If it means undemanding or older games, even at 1920x1080p, then never mind the lack of balance, you have no need of anything stronger than a $100 HD6670. If, OTOH, "light" is a reference to frequency of play, but you will be playing modern, demanding games, then a HD6870 or GTX560 (check benchmarks to see if the specific games favor ATI or nVidia) would be appropriate. Somewhere in between, a HD6770 offers very solid value.

Edit: grammar
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a c 181 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 1:02:41 AM

Mfusick said:
but the other comes with 2 years... and I probably would have a new one by then...

I get new PC every 2 anyways.. and sometimes upgrade my card before that..

depending on the value I see



Well in that case I think you answerd your own question. They all are good cards it is what the warranty is along with custmor support. If somthing goes wrong with the first choice and you end up waiting 3 months for a replacement.

Or the other one takes just about 2 weeks to get it done. I am only using them for examples not meaning they have problems. I know the XFX has a good customer support in place. I know nothing about the other one. But since you change computers anyway then go for the cheaper one.
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January 13, 2012 3:48:19 AM

Nice components but like what refillable said an HTPC with a Cosmos II? hahahaha. Sorry that really caught my eye. well for the value and budget it would definitely be a 6870 but its up to you which brand you take. But with everything that you have why not get something more powerful?

P.S. if you mean light gaming as playing games like BF3 from time to time I would say consider a more powerful card. ^_^
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a b U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 4:28:02 AM

Mfusick said:
I will probably upgrade this card in 12 months time and use it for a HTPC when I do... so it will live on.

That means that, because you will be using the video card longer than two years, the extra cost of the XFX is not out of the question.

Mfusick said:
I need a card that can do HTPC duties with ease... and do some light gaming.
...
Intel 2600k i7 CPU (Will OC it)

You do not need an i7 for this. You can save about $100 by dropping to an i5-K. Then you can put the money into a better quality power supply and an aftermarket cooler.
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a c 175 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 5:16:22 AM

A Pentium G620 or A4-3400 should be good for HTPC although, since this guy need an awesome HTPC he needs good parts. Agree though on getting i5-2500k.
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January 13, 2012 5:33:19 AM

same here I5 2500k would be enough
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a c 194 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 8:52:57 AM

I'm still not clear on the uses for this PC. Based on this:

"I need a video card. My budget is $200 or less. $150 really... lol.

I will probably upgrade this card in 12 months time and use it for a HTPC when I do... so it will live on.

I need a card that can do HTPC duties with ease... and do some light gaming."

1. Budget is $150 with wiggle room. A HD6850 is a comfortable fit.
2. This card will be used in ANOTHER machine which will be the HTPC later. A HD6450 is sufficient for that use.
3. In the meantime, THIS machine will serve as the HTPC, and will be a light gamer now. But what else, and what is mean by "light gaming?" Infrequent play and undemanding titles are two possible interpretations that come to mind, but mean two very different things to me. The first says I still want the strongest card I can afford; use the wiggle room and get a HD6870. The second one means even a HD6450, well under budget, would suffice.

How about something like this fanless HD6770: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... . It looks like a perfect HTPC card, that is quite capable of "light gaming;" even demanding titles can be run on lowered settings.
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a c 175 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 9:05:26 AM

I'm assuming that this guy is crazy rich :lol: 
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January 13, 2012 10:53:53 AM

From the case alone. you can tell. hehehehe (but if crazy rich then he would have gone with the X79 platform and the i7-3970X).

But he must really clarify the "light gaming" part.
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January 13, 2012 2:20:49 PM

refillable said:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You said a system with Cosmos II case is an HTPC? What a guy...


No I said it is an everyday main PC I use for everything.

But I rip blurays.. and do movies streamed over HDMI to my theater in room across the hall almost every day. Thus- this is very important.

My gaming is not as often- and mostly older games.

I might want to do some light gaming with modern titles. I would at least like the ability to do that.. and try a game. If I find I love it and play it often and I need more video card- Then I would replace it and buy a better one.

I have no problem buying a new card in 12 months if it makes sense from a performance standpoint.

Right now- I don't see immediate need for a $600 video card since I won't use all it's power. If in the future I find the need for that... the same card would be $200 again anyways.

I use my pc often for lots of stuff... and the cosmos II actually fits enough hard drives for me, and has hot swap bays. I need that.
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January 13, 2012 2:43:58 PM

Onus said:
You say "HTPC and light gaming..." You'll need to define "light gaming." If it means undemanding or older games, even at 1920x1080p, then never mind the lack of balance, you have no need of anything stronger than a $100 HD6670. If, OTOH, "light" is a reference to frequency of play, but you will be playing modern, demanding games, then a HD6870 or GTX560 (check benchmarks to see if the specific games favor ATI or nVidia) would be appropriate. Somewhere in between, a HD6770 offers very solid value.

Edit: grammar


JackNaylorPE said:
I do the 6870 if ya gotta stay under $200 ....if at all possible, I'd try and squeeze an extra $15 tho and get the 900Mhz 560 Ti

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...


I don't see how I can agree with you. The first link I posted to NewEgg was a 6870 for $129 after the rebate and discounts.

An Nvidia won't even work as well for $200 +

I would rather keep the $70 for the next time I upgrade. By looking for value, I can justify buying a new card in 12 months should my needs prove it needed. If I don't need it, then I saved the money. At this point I don't need $200+ card power.








shoot you said:
From the case alone. you can tell. hehehehe (but if crazy rich then he would have gone with the X79 platform and the i7-3970X).

But he must really clarify the "light gaming" part.


Light gaming is mostly strategy games like Command and Conquer or Starcraft II.

I might try a new game here or there.. but nothing heavy.

I don't need it to run perfectly. I don't play games all the time. I would just like the ability to at least run a game and try it see if I like it.

If I fall in love with a game that requires more video card- I would just upgrade.

But realistically- Most of the gaming I do should be able to run on say a $150 card like a 6870.


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January 13, 2012 2:46:04 PM

jsc said:
That means that, because you will be using the video card longer than two years, the extra cost of the XFX is not out of the question.


You do not need an i7 for this. You can save about $100 by dropping to an i5-K. Then you can put the money into a better quality power supply and an aftermarket cooler.


but I paid $284 for the 2600K while the 2500k was $224 on newegg.

I bought this Last night when I started the thread.

It was worth $60 it seemed to me. I do lots of zipping and unzipping of larger files, and some encoding. I should be able to push it a bit faster I think.

but your right... if you assume I only do HTPC or gaming.. then 2600k is way overkill.

I could have got a basic G series and it would be more than enough for HTPC.

This is an everday... all use... PC. I use it daily.. and often. It is my main PC.

I will game on it. Play movies. I will rip BluRays. I will encode. I will zip/unzip. Download torrents. basically everything possible you can do with a PC. But I don't run very demanding game titles all the time. If I get back into that (I have in the past) then I would get a $300+ card for it.

My next card will probably be a 7000 or 8000 series Radeon after this one.

For now... I need a $150 card (That is my ideal budget) that gets me the most bang for my $$ in performance and features.

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January 13, 2012 2:56:42 PM

refillable said:
I'm assuming that this guy is crazy rich :lol: 



I wish.

lol.

I would probably not be asking advice what is a great $150 video card though... if that was the case.

I would just go get a few of those new Radeon 7000's that just came out.

:) 
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January 13, 2012 4:24:41 PM

Thank you all for your replies and suggestions- Keep them coming.

It is very much appreciated.

I am looking to pull the trigger tonight.

Probably from NewEgg.

Is there another site that is good?
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a c 175 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 4:29:28 PM

:lol: 

Note that COSMOS II is as tall as a three-quarter metre. That, when you call it an HTPC, it looks stupid :lol:  but, if you like it it's totally fine :) .

Get a 6850, it will not make you sad. Go get from newegg.
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January 13, 2012 4:32:08 PM

It's not a HTPC. It's an enthusiast PC that does HTPC duties :) 
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January 13, 2012 4:39:15 PM

Is 6850 better than 6870 I posted in my second post of this thread?
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a c 175 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 4:45:47 PM

Well, of course 6870 is better, But since your budget go down to $150, I suggest you the card that is in your current budget.
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January 13, 2012 4:53:59 PM

refillable said:
Well, of course 6870 is better, But since your budget go down to $150, I suggest you the card that is in your current budget.


The first link I posted was a $129 6870...

The second was a $149 6870 with lifetime warranty from XFX.

I was confused sorry...

I assumed you thought the one you posted was a better choice.

now I realize you probably did not realize what I posted.. and asked about.
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a c 175 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 5:12:56 PM

No it's not that cheap! Check again!
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a c 194 U Graphics card
January 13, 2012 6:39:20 PM

If you just want to sample games, a HD6770 would be sufficient, but the discounts on that HD6870 (bringing it down to $129, like you said) are certainly nice, and make it an excellent bang/buck value.
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January 13, 2012 6:49:03 PM

Best answer selected by mfusick.
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January 13, 2012 6:49:53 PM

Thanks man!

I did some more looking... It does seem the best bang for my buck $129 is exactly where my budget is.. and performance wise it seems to do what I need it to do.

Thank you all that helped !
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