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No overclocking - $180-$250 budget - what's best?

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  • Graphics Cards
  • Overclocking
  • World Of Warcraft
  • Graphics
  • Product
Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 3, 2012 10:53:27 PM

Hi guys, I'm stuck on deciding the best GPU for my first build. Since I'm pretty new at this, I've decided to forgo overclocking my CPU/GPU - and I'm fine with that. I just want something that can last me ~ 3 years until I'm probably just going to build a brand new machine and give this to my parents.

Purpose of this machine: gaming (WoW, SC2, CoD are my main games), frapsing WoW, and editing/rendering/uploading videos.

I prefer to stick with the newest generation of cards, so as I see it my options are such:
7850, 7870, 7950 on sale, 650 Ti and 660.

Not factoring overclocking, which card can last me 3+ years and is a good price/performance investment? Also as a final general question, should I hold off until the Radeon 8XXX series is pushed out? I can wait a couple months.

More about : overclocking 180 250 budget

October 4, 2012 5:48:56 AM

Yeah... It's incredible how quickly technological developments progress. I totally agree with the above statement; the HD 7870 is probably the best of the bunch if you're considering the aforementioned cards for under $250. However, based on the kind of gaming that you do, even an HD 7850 would be more than what you need, depending on what definition or performance preferences you have.

Out of the cards you listed, the 7870 and 7950 would most likely be the most "future-proof," as they have the memory and performance capability of running potentially intense games in the future, if you think about straying from MMORPG and FPS gaming.

Anyways, if you were to go with a 7870, I would suggest the following card, as I've heard a plethora of good things about it:

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

Factoring in the rebate, shipping, and taxes, the final price will be $266.40; however, due to being a GHz edition card with a three fans, a 1100 MHz core clock, and 1200 MHz memory clock, it beats most of its comparable competitors.

If you really are planning to spend less than $250 and no more, then the cheapest 7870 as of current would be the following. However, prices fluctuate often, so make sure to check every once in a while if you aren't planning to make a purchase too soon.

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

I would suggest going with the 7850; examining benchmarks, it seems as if it would be more than adequate for your needs.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-7870-revi...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-7870-revi...
http://www.legionhardware.com/articles_pages/amd_radeon...
As you can see from these articles, the performance difference between a 7870 and 7850 isn't as prevalent in Call of Duty as in MMORPGs. However, if I were you, I still might go for the 7850.

This 7850 is one of the highest rated of its GPU category, but is still less than $250 by a substantial amount (about $50 ;P):
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (Limited time $10 promotion)
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007HYIDTC/?tag=pcpapi-20 (It could be more convenient to order from Amazon; they may or may not factor in taxes.)

This is the cheapest 7850 out right now, but it still retains a good reputation. This one only costs a total of around $151.59 in total, with the $20 rebate factored in.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

^THIS is what I would get. Hands down.

Hopefully that helped...? ;P

Also, if you can wait another five to seven months, then buy a card in the near future. The Radeon 8000 series isn't expected to be released until the beginning of next year, and at the very, very earliest, at the end of this year in the close of Q1 of the fiscal year. (I suck with fiscal year quarters, even though I'm taking Economics... :/  Awkward.)

*By the way, I didn't only browse Newegg, but they seem to have the best deals out for Radeon cards right now.
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a c 678 U Graphics card
a b K Overclocking
a b Ý World of Warcraft
October 4, 2012 6:46:32 AM

Simplexity88 said:
Hi guys, I'm stuck on deciding the best GPU for my first build. Since I'm pretty new at this, I've decided to forgo overclocking my CPU/GPU - and I'm fine with that. I just want something that can last me ~ 3 years until I'm probably just going to build a brand new machine and give this to my parents.

Purpose of this machine: gaming (WoW, SC2, CoD are my main games), frapsing WoW, and editing/rendering/uploading videos.

I prefer to stick with the newest generation of cards, so as I see it my options are such:
7850, 7870, 7950 on sale, 650 Ti and 660.

Not factoring overclocking, which card can last me 3+ years and is a good price/performance investment? Also as a final general question, should I hold off until the Radeon 8XXX series is pushed out? I can wait a couple months.

All of the games you listed firmly favor Nvidia cards. If you can afford a GTX 660 it will be your best option within that price range. Since you don't want to overclock, it's even better in that the 660 overclocks itself with Turbo Boost and takes advantage of the available power threshold.



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October 4, 2012 3:07:17 PM

Thanks for the find and recommendations. Going to go with the 660. So, since I'm not manually overclocking, it's a good idea to buy a factory OC'd card?
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