High Detail, 4x MSAA
All of the mid-range graphics hardware can handle high detail, but we also know that anti-aliasing increases graphics load quantifiably.
Once again, all of the cards are quite capable of playable performance at 1920x1080. Yes, the GeForce GTX 550 Ti has a minimum frame rate of 28, but this is close enough to our 30 FPS minimum in a demanding environment that. Radeon-based cards appear to have an advantage here, too.
There's another variable to bear in mind, though. While forcing AA using the game's client_settings.ini file didn't work with most Radeon cards, it did on the Radeon HD 6900-series boards. The resulting frame rates were lower than the scores we collected with AA forced on through the Catalyst Control Center driver panel.
We were unable to make the same comparison using Nvidia's cards because driver-forced AA does not work, so it's possible that the GeForce boards are at an artificially-imposed disadvantage until a more apples-to-apples comparison is possible. The point, however, is that Bioware has more work to do on its 3D engine prior to launch, and we'll be looking out to see if anti-aliasing is fixed by December 20th.
Radeon HD 5850
I played with high settings and a 3/4 viewing distance with:
Core 2 Duo e840
Nvidia GTS 8800
I played with with a mixture of low and medium settings and 40% viewing distance with:
i5 - 750
Radeon HD 4670
So clearly, a better video card (even an older one) is more important than a top-end processor.
This is a great game! Every quest and NPC interaction has voice-overs which greatly add to the dimension of the game. The intro movies are the best I've seen of any game, ever!
Still, I'm excited for release. I had a lot of fun in the beta and world PVP seems interesting without being annoying (though time will tell when the whole public gets ahold of it). You can solo much of it, but there are mini-raids starting at level 10 (or flashpoints I think they were called)...
The stories were just... wow... Sometimes they went a bit weak but they were always so detailed. I can say that this wouldn't be nearly as good as a single-player RPG. Lots of social aspects going on. But it's also not a grind like any other MMO I've done... Never once did I feel the grind of 'go kill 20 of these, bring the eye. go kill another 20, bring the teeth (why didn't they tell me last time).' Infact, kill X anything was a very rarity accept for a bonus xp aspect of which you nearly always doubled before finishing anyhow.
The big question is; "Will it have a good end-game"... Cause if not (and we didn't get to test that far), then long-term playability will be very limited... But again, we'll see that very soon...
Just wish you ran a 1gb/2gb card test. I've seen SWTOR eat tons of memory (2.7GB) & I wonder if video RAM is the same way.