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Budget Graphics Options

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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June 28, 2012 1:59:24 PM

Hey all,

I'm trying to decide between 2 used graphics cards...which is the better deal for my rig? can the cpu keep up w/ the gpu's? can psu handle the gpu's?

2x ati radeon HD 5830's for crosslinking (would get them in good wellmaintained condition for $160)
vs
1x evga gtx 560 ti oc (w/ 2x2gb RAM on the side for ~ $175 total, though might be able to haggle down to $150/160 ish)


My current build is by no means a monster, and I'm not sure if I'll even able to fit the dual cards w/ my power supply (the different calculators I used are conflicting)

here she is:

CPU: Core2 duo E8400 3.0ghz
mobo: gigabyte GA-EP45 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)
RAM: 2x2gb DDR2 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)
PSU: OCZ 600W (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)
hdd: 2x seagate barracude 7200 rpm 500 gb (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)

1 dvd-rw/dvd
1 multi card reader

also running dual 19" widescreen monitors (one is dvi on is vga) both 1440x900 res

As always, thanks for your thoughts!
a b U Graphics card
June 28, 2012 2:02:58 PM

hey man i say you are better of with the 560 ti for a number of reasons-
1)your cpu will bottleneck one hd 5830 forget 2 of them
2)your psu wont be able to run crossfire on your psu
3)560 ti has better architecture and is better than a hd 5830 and will probably surpass even two of them (hence the price)
4)two hd 5830s will run very hot. the 560 will run coole
hope this helps you to decide!
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June 28, 2012 2:22:09 PM

yeah i was worried about bottlenecking... in that case, might it be worth it to just use 1 hd 5830 and sell the other?

if i'm bottlenecking 1 hd 5830, won't i probably bottleneck the 560 ti as well? I'm probably not going to build a new rig anytime soon.
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a b U Graphics card
June 28, 2012 2:33:40 PM

It would help if we knew what you tend to do. Gaming? What games? At 600w you can probably get away with CF 8530s, but a single 560 is probably going to work better. Bottlenecking just means you're not getting full value out of the other components in the system, and it depends on what you are doing. Very few games are actually CPU bound, so you may still benefit from a graphics card upgrade.
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June 28, 2012 2:36:02 PM

Skyrim :) )
... not exactly a hardcore gamer (hence no decked out rig), but my current geforce 9400GT is not cutting it...laggy even at lowest quality :\
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a b U Graphics card
June 29, 2012 3:32:09 PM

A 560 will be fine and less troublesome than 2 cards
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!