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Upgrade to Radeon 6970 or 7850 on $300 budget

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 7, 2012 2:48:05 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Next 3 Months BUDGET RANGE: £150/$250


USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Run Skyrim between High and Ultra (With HD Texture/Mesh mods + other resource intensive mods)
Will currently run Smooth Medium @40FPS and High at 25-30FPS with 10-20 Sec lockups every 15mins - I am thinking that the VRam is full?


CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY: GIGABYTE ATI Radeon HD 4850 512MB and Not sure on PSU. I think i upgraded to 750W or 850W(Anyone know how I can check?)


OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS: Intel Pentium Duel Core @2.7GHz (E5400), 3GB DDR2 Ram (Two cards), Useless Motherboard (MS-7525 Boston), 2TB HDD


PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: UK Based, not too bothered which site. COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: UK


PARTS PREFERENCES: Always used ATI before, never tried nVidia. Thinking of Radeon 6970 or 7850


OVERCLOCKING:Maybe SLI OR CROSSFIRE:No


MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1200


ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: May also like to upgrade CPU to Intel i5-3570K /w Gigabyte SKT-1155 Z77-D3H Motherboard, but only on upgrade at a time :) 

Not too sure on the different versions such as Gigabyte, Sapphire, XFX, HIS etc?

Any other suggestions on upgrades/ limiting hardware would be appreciated.
a b U Graphics card
October 7, 2012 3:16:05 PM

Wait you just upgrading your GPU or what?

If you are upgrading your GPU only, go for the 7870 GHZ when at a budget at $300. Its a much better card than a 7850, although stock 7870 vs 7850 there isn't much of a difference.

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/2gb-xfx-radeon-hd-7870-d...

such a sexy cooler :p 
October 7, 2012 3:24:26 PM

I'm thinking that its only the GPU that needs upgrading?

$300/£200 is the top of my budget really. Is there a noticeable difference when compare to a £150 card? If the cheaper card struggles then I'm all for getting the better card, but Id rather not spend money for the sake of it.
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a b U Graphics card
October 7, 2012 3:28:43 PM

Well if it was non GHZ, not really. Stock 7870 vs 7850 is a minimal difference. GHZ is actually quite different, and quite a bit better. Remember, the exact same version of this card in 7850 form is actually only 180 pounds, so its not a giant difference. If overclocked, the 7850 can probably reach the 7870 levels. Lets go with a 7850 then, if you want to save some cash :p 

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/2gb-xfx-radeon-hd-7850-d...

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/2gb-sapphire-radeon-hd-7...

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/2gb-gigabyte-radeon-hd-7...

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/2gb-msi-radeon-hd-7850-t...

Those are the four best 7850's to choose from. All are relatively good prices.
a b U Graphics card
October 7, 2012 3:30:04 PM

And currently, I wouldn't recommend to upgrade from a 6970. You wouldn't see much of a difference, might even be worse than a 6970, its just the newer architecture.

I would recommend to wait until the HD 8000's then its a worthwhile upgrade. Upgrading to a 7850/70 wouldn't really help fps at all.

EDIT: Wait nevermind, thought you were upgrading from a 6970 to a 7850/70, I was wrong, my bad.

2nd Edit: Your CPU would be a considerable bottleneck, I recommend you upgrade to a new CPU stat, which would also mean you would have to upgrade your motherboard as well, and most likely Ram. It'll be an expensive upgrade, especially when you want to upgrade a CPU to a different socket type.
a b U Graphics card
October 7, 2012 10:37:01 PM

Yep, those three will work. If you can get a deal on all three of those, and maybe a further upgrade to your PSU. You say its 750W or 850W, which is more than enough, but make sure and open your case, and it should say on your power supply.
!