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Best card under $150?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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Which is the best under $150?

Total: 26 votes (5 blank votes)

  • 6850
  • 53 %
  • 7770
  • 29 %
  • 550 ti
  • 5 %
  • 7750
  • 0 %
  • other
  • 15 %
July 31, 2012 7:33:54 PM

So I have a strict budget of about $150, and want to know what the best card out there for that price. It also must have only one 6 pin power connector (my PSU only has 1, and I don't want to use molex adapters).

So which one is it? 7770, 6850, 550 ti, 7750? Other? And what brand?
(Also, has the 7770 improved with drivers? I know that Tom's has benchmarks, but these were taken when the 7770 still had problematic drivers. Has better drivers increased performance?)


Resolution: 1440x900
My Specs: CPU: i3-2120, Mobo: ASRock Z68 Extreme3, RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws 4GB, HDD: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB, PSU: Corsair CX430
Games: Crysis series, Batman Arkham City, BF3, etc.

More about : card 150

a c 186 U Graphics card
July 31, 2012 7:40:02 PM

6850, is the best out those as for what brand either MSI or ASUS even Sapphire have never failed for me so i favor those i don't care for Gigabyte or HIS have had a few of their cards die on me but honestly all brands are pretty good.
a b U Graphics card
July 31, 2012 7:40:11 PM

if you are willing to play the rebate game then a gtx 560 or 6870
Related resources
July 31, 2012 7:40:29 PM

Wait a couple weeks for the 660ti to be released. Based on tweaktown's review, it looks absolutely amazing, and should send prices on cards like the 560ti and 7850 plummeting through the floor.

I'd guess you could get a 560ti-calibur card in a couple weeks around the $150 mark.

If you must buy now, the 7770 is the best option. The 6850, if it's cheaper, is a good option as well. The 7750 is a bit weak and the 550ti is overpriced.



July 31, 2012 7:42:44 PM

Going by pure raw Graphics processing power the HD 6850 has an edge over the 7770 but consumes more power. Since you have a good brand reliable PSU you can go for the HD6850. The HD 7770 wouldnt be much slower though, so if you are more keen on saving on power costs then go for the 7770. The drivers are continually improving and with a fair amount of overclock the HD 7770 can easily come on par(and more) with the HD 6850 which can be overclocked to a fair amt itself too.
a b U Graphics card
July 31, 2012 7:44:05 PM

6850 or gtx 460 1GB (get the most silent one :p )
July 31, 2012 7:51:16 PM

BigMack70 said:
Wait a couple weeks for the 660ti to be released. Based on tweaktown's review, it looks absolutely amazing, and should send prices on cards like the 560ti and 7850 plummeting through the floor.

I'd guess you could get a 560ti-calibur card in a couple weeks around the $150 mark.

If you must buy now, the 7770 is the best option. The 6850, if it's cheaper, is a good option as well. The 7750 is a bit weak and the 550ti is overpriced.

http://tpucdn.com/reviews/AMD/HD_7770/images/perfrel.gif


Yeah, I was going to wait for the 660 ti to cut prices, but due to school coming up soon (and my budget decreasing by the day) I have to choose a card by today or tomorrow.
July 31, 2012 7:53:22 PM

Yup so I'd just go with the 7770 unless the 6850 is cheaper. I'd trust most of the brands, namely Sapphire, XFX, ASUS, MSI, Gigabyte (in that order for me). 6850 is just a couple % faster, which you aren't going to notice, but you will notice the lower noise of the 7770.
July 31, 2012 7:57:16 PM

BigMack70 said:
Yup so I'd just go with the 7770 unless the 6850 is cheaper. I'd trust most of the brands, namely Sapphire, XFX, ASUS, MSI, Gigabyte (in that order for me). 6850 is just a couple % faster, which you aren't going to notice, but you will notice the lower noise of the 7770.


Thanks, I didn't even think about the noise, and considering that my rig is on top of my desk and only 5-6 inches away from my ear, noise is pretty important.
a b U Graphics card
July 31, 2012 7:58:46 PM

GTX 560, 120$ with rebate :p 
a c 199 U Graphics card
July 31, 2012 8:02:58 PM

While the HD6850 is technically still a little faster, I would not be surprised if driver updates bring the HD7770 to parity or maybe a little better in general. For some things though, the 256bit bandwidth of the HD6850 (vs. 128bit for the HD7770) may not be overcome by driver changes. Check benchmarks of the specific [types of] games you play.
As to brand, I prefer XFX or HIS; maybe Sapphire. Their mobos are great, but I had almost immediate death from 2/4 Asus graphics cards I bought, so they're near the bottom of my list. By contrast, MSI makes poopy mobos (VRMs tend to blow), but their graphics cards are decent.

Edit: On the subject of noise, my XFX HD7770 is near silent even when benchmarking.
July 31, 2012 8:04:53 PM

austing said:
GTX 560, 120$ with rebate :p 


Unfortunately I only have one PCI-E 6 pin power connector on my PSU, and the 560 requires 2. Thanks though.
July 31, 2012 8:11:51 PM

Onus said:
While the HD6850 is technically still a little faster, I would not be surprised if driver updates bring the HD7770 to parity or maybe a little better in general. For some things though, the 256bit bandwidth of the HD6850 (vs. 128bit for the HD7770) may not be overcome by driver changes. Check benchmarks of the specific [types of] games you play.
As to brand, I prefer XFX or HIS; maybe Sapphire. Their mobos are great, but I had almost immediate death from 2/4 Asus graphics cards I bought, so they're near the bottom of my list. By contrast, MSI makes poopy mobos (VRMs tend to blow), but their graphics cards are decent.

Edit: On the subject of noise, my XFX HD7770 is near silent even when benchmarking.


Awesome, good to hear from a 7770 owner. I also was a little worried about the 128bit interface, but it seems to not be too much of a problem. And the card being silent is definitely great to know.

Btw, if you play any games like Crysis or BF3, what have you been getting fps wise?
July 31, 2012 8:19:48 PM

austing said:
Youl get one of these in the box with the GFX card:

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


I did some research before, and because of my PSU's low wattage and voltage, using a molex to 6 pin adapter could harm my PSU in the long run (or not sufficiently power the 560). I do not want to run any risks on my first build, and so wish to stick to a single 6 pin card.
July 31, 2012 8:24:11 PM

NYGiants7 said:
I did some research before, and because of my PSU's low wattage and voltage, using a molex to 6 pin adapter could harm my PSU in the long run (or not sufficiently power the 560). I do not want to run any risks on my first build, and so wish to stick to a single 6 pin card.



+1
a c 199 U Graphics card
July 31, 2012 8:40:09 PM

Sorry, I do not play any remotely current FPS titles. Most of my games are older. Having beta tested on two weekends, it really feels like I should be playing GW2. That game should run well on a HD7770 once it has been optimized. The betas were playable, but not quite as well as I'd like. I'm really looking forward to the benchmarks on that game. Four more weeks!
July 31, 2012 8:48:05 PM

Onus said:
Sorry, I do not play any remotely current FPS titles. Most of my games are older. Having beta tested on two weekends, it really feels like I should be playing GW2. That game should run well on a HD7770 once it has been optimized. The betas were playable, but not quite as well as I'd like. I'm really looking forward to the benchmarks on that game. Four more weeks!


Thanks, that gives me a good idea on its playability. I'll have to look into the 7770 a little more.
July 31, 2012 8:59:58 PM

BigMack70 said:
At your resolution, I think you'll be fine, just might have to turn down the AA in the more demanding games depending on how smooth you like your framerate:
http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/AMD/HD_7770/13.html
http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/AMD/HD_7770/8.html
http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/AMD/HD_7770/7.html


Alright, you got me sold! 7770 for me it is. I also wanted to get your opinion on these 2 cards (which one?):
$150 - Sapphire Vapor-X 7770
$135 - MSI 7770
a c 199 U Graphics card
July 31, 2012 10:38:11 PM

Of those two, I'd take the MSI. I have this XFX: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

One one Sapphire review I read, they were found to use some iron core (rather than the more efficient ferrite) chokes in a VRM. That's a piddling difference, but if that's the only basis for a choice, I'll take something else.
!