I'm trying to decide over these four cards for my first build. I will be maxing out skyrim with lots of mods and play other games as well. I'm looking at gtx 480 and 7850 specifically, since they are the cheapest of the four. The gtx 480 now sells for $199 and the 7850 goes for $225 after rebates. I've heard the 480 uses much more power than the 7850 and gets hotter for a little higher performance, is that true? So which GPU is the best here in terms of price vs performance?
Do you ever plan to SLI or Crossfire the card you pick? The PSU and motherboard you choose will affect this. The mistake I made when buying parts was going for a rosewill 630 watt because it was cheaper than other options. While the psu got good reviews, it certainly isn't enough for 480s in SLI. Even xfire 7850s will be pushing it, for sure, but I'd rather be looking for a second HD 7850 in a couple of years than hunting for a second 480. This was the deciding factor for me.
EDIT: so i just looked at your other posts. Crossfire and SLI seems to be out of the equation on a 500w psu, even if it is an Antec. I'm sure that Recon will do his best to give you what you need to make an informed decision.
I don't want to cross fire or SLI them in the future, since they are fairly in the higher end already and i am not going for 60+ fps in games. Oh, I was going to buy a cheap 750 watt instead of the 500w one listed.
I didn't mean to make you question which psu they picked out for you. I don't remember which one they picked, but I'm sure that it's very reliable and highly rated. I've heard time and time again that it's about quality, not just max watts. Like you, I too didn't see a need to get max settings on multiple monitors. I just like the option of knowing that I can upgrade my rig in 2-3 years with another card when I can't keep up with the new games anymore.