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General Chat Thread, Graphics Card Upgrade Advice in General; ...
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    azrael78's Avatar
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    Cool Graphics Card Upgrade Advice

    I currently have an ATI HD2900XT card, it's been a lovely card and has done all that I've asked of it until lately.

    Due to various issues I now have with the card (it cuts out by itself, whether the PC has been in use for 10 minutes or 5 hours or whatever) - I'm looking at replacing it with something more modern.

    I realise the old ATI vs NVidia debate is as old as Mac vs PC - however over my time as a PC enthusiast I've had both makes of card and have found that both can do a nice job.

    The reason I'm ATI currently is that my last 2 NVidia cards died by themselves in quick succession (I was able to get them refunded) - so I figure give ATI a go.

    I initially had an ATI X1950 Pro card and upgraded to the HD2900XT.

    I'm on a budget - I can afford no more than £150-£160 for a card that will last at least 2-3 years. (When I say 'last' I mean that it will still be able to play some games as long as the spec of the game isn't way beyond what the card can support)

    So - what would you all recommend as an upgrade to my card?

    I'm happy to stick with ATI or give NVidia another go, the make itself doesn't hugely bother me - as long as the hardware works and does what I need of it.

    Cheers,

    Az

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    ATI 5870 would be a good card in the range you have

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    mac_shinobi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    ATI 5870 would be a good card in the range you have
    I was just thinking that but not sure how much the 5870 is but if it is too much there is always the 5770. Not that it is relevant to this post but feel quite let down by the nvidia GTX 400 range especially since Nvidia are asking so much more money for it.

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    I have seen the 5870 on offer in PC world for £175 (yesterday). BNIB, not sure if it is a one off though.

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    Thats a stonking price for a stonking card!
    5770's are around just about everywhere for the £100 mark, 5850 normally goes for 170-200 and the 5870 quite a bit more. Cracking cards, very reliable, quite cool running, not power hungry, reasonably priced; everything the modern NV cards are not.

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    I have got the 5770 and would recommend it to anyone, plays and anything on the market rather well and still has room for overclocking?

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    azrael78's Avatar
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    I was looking at the 5670 but so far most people favour the 5770 here so I will give it a further looky.

    Does the 512MB/1GB version matter aside from memory size? Do you really need 1GB on a graphics card these days?

    Az

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    mac_shinobi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by azrael78 View Post
    I was looking at the 5670 but so far most people favour the 5770 here so I will give it a further looky.

    Does the 512MB/1GB version matter aside from memory size? Do you really need 1GB on a graphics card these days?

    Az
    I would look at the memory specs closer ref GDDR 5 or what exactly along with maybe a few other things that would effect how fast the data will be transferred ie speed of the memory buses and how many memory bus lanes ( or whatever they are called ) there are etc

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    the 1GB DDR5 version is superior only in the sense that it has more memory to utilise for gaming (or other such apps, depends on what you do), but in terms of gaming performance, it is a noticeable difference

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    flyinghaggis's Avatar
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    3s-gtech's Avatar
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    For mid-high end cards, 1GB frame buffer is a minimum to be looking for now - obviously coupled with the memory interface to make use of it. If you can find a 5870 in that budget, you're onto a winner.

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    azrael78's Avatar
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    What's the underlying difference between the 5770 and the 5830 aside from price?
    The core and memory speeds certainly look the same or similar.

    I'm missing something obvious I'm sure

    Az

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    If anyone else spots an ati 5870 for £175 legit, buy 50 of them; they are worth £300-400!

    The 5870 is one of the top 3 most powerful cards on the market right now, The ones above it being the ATi 5970 (which is actually 2 5850's bolted together) and, arguably, the Nvidia 480.

    The 5830 is right in your price bracket.

    Make sure with such a huge jump in graphics power you have a PSU that has the right connectors and enough raw power. These higher end cards require a decent PSU; your 300w cheap jobby's will cause trouble, as a benchmark should have 5-600w PSU for a household gaming PC, and go higher if you run a lot of drives, multiple graphics cards, or upgrade to a very top end card.

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    Difference between the 57x and 58x is processing cores. The 58x series has about 35% more of them, meaning more processing power to work it's magic.

    The 5830 will be a better card than the 5770.

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