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Best Bang for Buck?

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January 21, 2013 2:25:01 PM

Hi All,

I've got an opportunity to spend some cash and i'm looking for an opinion:

Currently, I have a 21" Samsung LED monitor and an Nvidia GTX460 1GB card. Those are my weak points, all of my other hardware is up to snuff.

My budget is ~250, and that gives me room for one or the other. I'm a weekend gamer, but play all genres of games. What would you do? I really like the monitor, but it's on the small side now and I'm limited to 1920x1080. The GTX I've pushed as far as it will go. SLI is not an option.

Thanks in advance,

Jon

More about : bang buck

a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:28:00 PM

whats the rest of ur pc specs. so i kno what to recommand.

January 21, 2013 2:30:06 PM

If your question is between buying a monitor and buying a video card I would say the video card is going to give you more bang for the dollar. All the monitor will give you is a few more inches of screen space, which is nice, but won't really change anything.
However, if you intend to buy both, I would say get a monitor now and a video card in the fall or whenever both the new AMD's and NVidia's have come out.
As far as monitors go. A nice IPS if you are not a big FPS gamer or a 120mhz monitor if you want 3D and low responce time for fast action games.
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a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:32:27 PM

Can you currently play games on max settings? If yes, buy a bigger monitor. If not, buy a better video card so you can play on max settings.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:33:26 PM

i really doubt a 460 can max out any game at this point its quite outdated.

January 21, 2013 2:34:42 PM

OCZ Vertex 3 SSD/WD Black 1TB, 16GB G-Skill Ripjaws, i5-2500k, MSI Z68A-G43, Corsair cheapo liquid cooling kit.

Also, thanks, yes I do plan to buy both. I stalled on the Nvidia 5XX series for the 6XX series, and now I'm trying to make the decision.

FPS is probably on the low side of gaming. Dishonored is about all I've played from that genre lately. And it's not intense.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:35:44 PM

whats ur ps?

January 21, 2013 2:36:46 PM

Willard, I can max out *MOST* of my games at 1920x1080 and still manage 30fps. However, the card's OC'ed to its bleeding limit. However, Skyrim and Witcher 2 basically tell me to get screwed @ max. Metro 2033 as well.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:37:28 PM

need to know what type of powersupply u have to recommand the right card for u?

a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:38:26 PM

iceclock said:
i really doubt a 460 can max out any game at this point its quite outdated.

You'd be surprised. Not everyone is interested in playing BF3 or Crysis 2. A lot of the games I play could be easily maxed out by a 460. It's also possible he's on a lower resolution than 1080p, lowering the bar for performance.
January 21, 2013 2:43:43 PM

iceclock said:
ok

well id recommand strongly the 7950 its 290$ 40$ more but def more future proof than the gtx 660ti.

http://www.superbiiz.com/detail.php?name=GA-795WF3G&c=C...

onced overclocked reaches 7970 levels and that can rival witha gtx 680 thats 500$.

so its up to u, but if u just got 250$ i recommand the cheaper 660ti

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/886208-REG/PNY_Te...

witch is 15$ less. no card thats worth it under 265ish.


Thanks. I can spend upwards, especially if it will last a few years. My 460's a year and a half old. A year and a half of abuse. :) 
January 21, 2013 2:43:53 PM

theallpowerfuljon said:
OCZ Vertex 3 SSD/WD Black 1TB, 16GB G-Skill Ripjaws, i5-2500k, MSI Z68A-G43, Corsair cheapo liquid cooling kit.

Also, thanks, yes I do plan to buy both. I stalled on the Nvidia 5XX series for the 6XX series, and now I'm trying to make the decision.

FPS is probably on the low side of gaming. Dishonored is about all I've played from that genre lately. And it's not intense.



Ok, then go with a nice IPS and stall a little longer for the 7xx to come out. The 7xx should be able to run the resolution you'll want to run your IPS at.
January 21, 2013 2:52:29 PM

ibjeepr said:
Ok, then go with a nice IPS and stall a little longer for the 7xx to come out. The 7xx should be able to run the resolution you'll want to run your IPS at.


Thank you.

I've read the IPS monitors are bad with ghosting -- is this going to affect games that aren't super high action?

Also, a lot of them are way out of price range. Are the cheaper end IPS monitors decent?
January 21, 2013 2:53:59 PM

iceclock said:
i really doubt a 460 can max out any game at this point its quite outdated.


My 470 still dominates.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:56:16 PM

470 and 460 isnt same branch of speed.especially when overclocked.



a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 2:57:18 PM

theallpowerfuljon said:
Thanks. I can spend upwards, especially if it will last a few years. My 460's a year and a half old. A year and a half of abuse. :) 

I'd say the 7950 or the 660 Ti are your best bets. I'm a fan of AMD's GPUs, so I'll throw my hat in with the 7950. It will max out any game today, and probably most of the ones that come out for the next couple years.

Anyway, it looks like you're on the same upgrade cycle I used to be on. I'm convinced it's the most cost effective way to keep gaming. Here are some tips from my experience.

1. Product launches are your friend. Unlike CPUs, video cards tend to take a bit of a dive in price around the launch of the next generation. You can usually save a little bit of money or get a slightly better card if you wait to upgrade until just after a launch. Plus, there's always the outside chance that something from the new generation will be better bang for your buck (launch prices tend to prevent this these days).

2. Crossfire/SLI can offer very large increases in performance, effectively for free with this strategy. You just buy a second copy of your current card, which almost always saves money and gives better performance. You just need to be sure you have enough juice to pull it off. This means overpurchasing on your PSU to get 750W instead of the typical 550W you'd put in a system like this. An alternative would be to just stick a second PSU in your computer. PM me if you want instructions. I'll post them publicly, but they're kind of long winded so I'm not going to type it out unless there's interest.

3. Overclocking is the best tool at your disposal, so try to make your hardware purchases play to this strength. This means Intel CPUs (k editions only) and AMD GPUs (mid range or better). Nvidia can overclock too, its current offerings just don't handle it as well as the AMD cards do. This is something that's fairly likely to change with every new launch, so you've kind of got to stay on top of it if you want to get the best return.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 3:00:16 PM

he has a 750watt corsair. should suffice.

3. i agree.

January 21, 2013 3:22:10 PM

theallpowerfuljon said:
Thank you.

I've read the IPS monitors are bad with ghosting -- is this going to affect games that aren't super high action?

Also, a lot of them are way out of price range. Are the cheaper end IPS monitors decent?


I've heard from others on here that the ghosting isn't really noticeable unless you look for it so I'd say it sounds like you would be fine, but as I said, it depends on how important the action games are to you.

The IPS does give an amazing image. I decided to go with a 120mhz 1080p monitor because I didn't want to risk it and also because a good IPS with a 6ms response time can be upwards of $500-$600. My monitor was only $200 and I still find the image good.

So if $500 is out of your price range and/or you value response time over image quality then the best 1080p 24"-27" monitor you can afford will be fine. Some others here may have a recommendation for a less expensive IPS for gaming. Unfortunately, unless you want to try to overclock an e-bay IPS from Korea (still about $500), the best of both worlds doesn't exist yet.

I'd still go monitor first and video card after both companies come out with their new series though.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 3:27:17 PM

u want a 6ms or under ips panel, u can get 2 decents one i recommanded, the dell ultra at 300$ or the cheaper lg one, both are very good, no need to pay 500$ for a good ips panel.

January 21, 2013 3:29:57 PM

iceclock said:
u want a 6ms or under ips panel, u can get 2 decents one i recommanded, the dell ultra at 300$ or the cheaper lg one, both are very good, no need to pay 500$ for a good ips panel.


both look good but the Dell says it is 8ms and I couldn't find it for the cheaper one. 8ms might be a bit high.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 3:33:04 PM

the dellultra is one of the best ips for 300$ u can buy,

there are exceptions.

January 21, 2013 3:38:16 PM

iceclock said:
the dellultra is one of the best ips for 300$ u can buy,

there are exceptions.


I'm sure the Dell is one of the best looking you can buy but if he has any concerns about ghosting then he may want to sacrafice some of the image quality for a lower response time.

I see the cheaper one you linked shows it has only a 5ms response time. That's a pretty nice looking monitor for under $200. I'd definitely give that one a shot.
January 21, 2013 3:39:31 PM

My IPS 1440p has no ghosting whatsoever!
January 21, 2013 3:47:10 PM

techbaddie said:
My IPS 1440p has no ghosting whatsoever!


Ya I've heard good things about that monitor. When I recommended an IPS and waiting for a next gen card I was expecting him to run it at that resolution as well. $400 isn't a bad price for that either.

But for under $200 the one iceclock recommended looks pretty good too if running 1080p is fine.
January 21, 2013 3:56:03 PM

theallpowerfuljon said:
Hi All,

I've got an opportunity to spend some cash and i'm looking for an opinion:

Currently, I have a 21" Samsung LED monitor and an Nvidia GTX460 1GB card. Those are my weak points, all of my other hardware is up to snuff.

My budget is ~250, and that gives me room for one or the other. I'm a weekend gamer, but play all genres of games. What would you do? I really like the monitor, but it's on the small side now and I'm limited to 1920x1080. The GTX I've pushed as far as it will go. SLI is not an option.

Thanks in advance,

Jon

XFX 7850 is probably best bang 4 buck
a c 212 U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 4:08:07 PM

I'd do the 660 Ti or 7950 at your budget. At he hardwareinfo site below, you can see perofrmance as single card and both 2-way and 3-way CF

http://uk.hardware.info/reviews/3026/nvidia-geforce-gtx...
660 Ti gets a Total FPS of 566.0 at a Cost Per Frame of $0.48
7950i gets a Total FPS of 530.4 at a Cost Per Frame of $0.57

As for monitor, Id recommend a 120Hz TN panel..... while I use Dell and Eizo IPS panels for photo editing, side by side they pale next to a 120Hz TN panel in gaming.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

When shopping for monitors, ignore advertised response times....they are almost never real on the budget models where manufacturers publish black to black instead of gray to gray to cheat.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 4:53:20 PM

To stay more in budget buy the video card first, then eBay your old card.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 4:58:24 PM

+1 to jacks and ohiou recommandation.

yes 120hz panels are nice but are alot more costly jack.

the dellultrasharp is 60fps and hella good,

a c 164 U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 4:58:45 PM

If you've OC'd your 460 as far as it will go, then its probably around the speed of the GTX470. I thought everyone read that article...

I'm going to go with get a GPU. You already have a 1080 monitor. Why toss it and get another 1080 monitor? Take a look around and see what you can find. A new GPU will get you going again.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 4:59:45 PM

oh i beleive it can hit 470 levels still not strong enought for max details at 60 clicks a sec.

January 21, 2013 5:31:18 PM

ohiou_grad_06 said:
To stay more in budget buy the video card first, then eBay your old card.


I don't see how that would keep him more on budget.

Whatever he gets for his card now won't be much so waiting 6 months will have a small effect on that.
Yet whatever he pays for a new card now will be significantly more than what he will pay for that same card once the 7xx / 8xxx is out.
January 21, 2013 5:57:37 PM

Thanks for all the feedback, it's extremely valuable.

@Willard -- I haven't owned an ATi/AMD card in 15 years. That doesn't mean they are out of the picture. I'm going to try to find some articles on the AMD overclocking abilities and do a bit of comparison versus the 660 Ti. I'm impressed by how far you've pushed your i5-2500k -- I'm only able to get it to ~4.2 stable. Most of that is my lack of knowledge and time, combined with the cheap MSI Z68A-G43 I have. That also eliminates the ability for SLI/Crossfire right off the bat.

@ohiou - Yup, I do plan to eBay the old card. Since I have all the original junk, I can squeeze an extra $10 or so out of it.

@4745454b - Buying the 21" Samsung originally was a bad mistake. Not a horrible mistake, I just should have done more research before picking it up. I really like it, I just want bigger.

We have a few of the brand new Dell's at work, and I'm impressed.

Holding off on the monitor for now, it looks like it's down to the 7950/7970 or 660 Ti.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 6:00:10 PM

so whats ur max budget?

a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 6:04:41 PM

if u want best bang for bucks heres my pick:

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

3years warranty. good cooling. overclocks well. price is nice :) 

if u really dont want ati.

heres an nvidia 660ti 2gig for yeah. from pny and holds a 5 year warranty

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/886208-REG/PNY_Te...

244 after-mail-in-rebate :D 

PNY Graphic Card Warranty
*Three year (plus an additional 2 years upon completion of a registration form on PNY's website)

5 years warranty is great.



a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 6:18:09 PM

Nobody said 6 months lol. I bought my 7850 and got 30 bucks for my old gts 450. I put mine on like a 1 day auction. I would think 50 or 60 from the 460 would not be out of line.
a c 164 U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 6:33:37 PM

I wouldn't think an LED 1080 monitor was a bad choice. Newest size and still 1080. Yes it's a bit small, but should look rather sharp.

I currently have a GTX460 in my rig and might want yours. (I can sli or CF on my board.) PM me when you sell and I might buy yours.
January 21, 2013 6:43:41 PM

4745454b said:
I wouldn't think an LED 1080 monitor was a bad choice. Newest size and still 1080. Yes it's a bit small, but should look rather sharp.

I currently have a GTX460 in my rig and might want yours. (I can sli or CF on my board.) PM me when you sell and I might buy yours.


I'll let you know, I might jump on a new one tonight.

I do think it's funny that I'm complaining about a 21" monitor being too small. Ten years ago, we were wondering if it was worth the extra $1k to buy a crappy first gen 14" LCD.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 6:55:43 PM

so what u gonna take 7950 or 660ti?
January 21, 2013 8:17:14 PM

ohiou_grad_06 said:
Nobody said 6 months lol. I bought my 7850 and got 30 bucks for my old gts 450. I put mine on like a 1 day auction. I would think 50 or 60 from the 460 would not be out of line.


You totally missed the point. I said 6 months, (maybe a little more or less) because I recommend he wait for the next generation of cards. In six months his $60 card will still be worth $40. However, after the next generation of cards comes out that card he pays $300 for now will be worth $200 or less. So instead of buying a new card now, get the monitor, was my recommendation. Doesn't matter, he's decided to go with a new card.
January 21, 2013 11:50:53 PM

Yes, I did pick up a new card. I bought the 660 Ti, and I'm very happy with my purchase.

Thanks again for all of the advice. I have a PNY GTX 460 Ti if anybody's interested.
a b U Graphics card
January 21, 2013 11:54:40 PM

excellent, also u cant sell things here. ebay works tho :D 

a c 164 U Graphics card
January 22, 2013 12:37:43 AM

Why not? Toms has a FS/FT section. (unless you meant he can't sell in the graphics and displays forum...)
a b U Graphics card
January 22, 2013 2:34:46 AM

i forgot toms had a for sell section, doh. but yeah not in this section :D 

January 22, 2013 11:28:45 AM

OK -- One more question before I bail on that 460 --

My motherboard has multiple PCI-E lanes, but does not support SLI.

I am *NOT* looking for SLI, and I am *NOT* looking to hook up dual monitors. That being said, is there any performance gain to be had by putting the 460 back in my system and configuring PhysX or something along those lines?
a b U Graphics card
January 22, 2013 1:09:50 PM

whats ur lane at. the second one.

4x?

a b U Graphics card
January 22, 2013 1:21:20 PM

well a new gpu will help u do physx- but whynot use ur old 460 as a dedicated physx card. but ull need a good ps for that, whats ur current ps?

!