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Is there a stable way to look for graphics cards?


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#1 ramzorz

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 00:26

So, my EAH5670 just isn't cutting it anymore. I've been looking for a new card for the past two months or so, but I can't seem to bet myself to decide on one, and even when I do, I'm not sure. What are some tips to look for a graphics card? Is there some guide out there? I know that it's recommended to buy cards just by looking at specs, it's mostly about benchmarks, but I can't seem to find some relevant benchmarks online. Not only that, I don't want it for just gaming. I do lots of high resolution Photoshop work along with HD video editing, but I also want to play games like Assassin's Creed III on the highest settings on a card that won't dip under 30 frames.

I was wondering if such a card exists that's in the $100-$150 range. Should I spend more? I would love some examples, but more than anything, I would love a sort of guide on how to properly search for cards. Thanks!


#2 remixedcat

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 00:34

Nvidia Geforece 560Ti's can be had for around the that price range and would do fine for a good bit of games...

now I got a GF 650Ti for 169USD and It's a pretty nice card for the money. I can max skyrim out 1080p and the frame rates are good.

#3 OP ramzorz

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 00:37

Oh! I also forgot to mention that I'm planning a tripple monitor build (NOT for gaming, I will only be using one monitor for gaming). So I want a card that can support three monitors, is that helps out. I'll be checking out the GF 650Ti as you recommended. :)

#4 OP ramzorz

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 10:45

Nobody has anything else for me? :(

#5 LUTZIFER

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 10:55

ASUS HD 7970 DirectCU II: coolest and quietest 28nm card


•Cranked 75MHz over reference for an ultimate engine clock of 1000MHz
•All new DirectCU thermal design utilizes six all-copper heatpipes and 20% bigger dissipation area, achieving 20% cooler and 14dB quieter performance than reference
•Acclaimed DIGI+ VRM with 12-phase Super Alloy Power technology delivers precise digital power and enhanced durability for stable overclocking
•VGA Hotwire allows you to plug and solder wires on the card’s voltage regulators and accurately read and control Vcore, Vmem, and PLL voltages on a hardware level
•GPU Tweak utility helps you modify and tune clock speeds, voltages, and fan performance via an intuitive interface
•One card drives up to six screens with AMD Eyefinity™ 6

#6 Kami-

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:03

Why don't you post rest of the system specs (including PSU), so people can match up the card to your kit.

#7 +metal_dragen

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:45

ASUS HD 7970 DirectCU II: coolest and quietest 28nm card


•Cranked 75MHz over reference for an ultimate engine clock of 1000MHz
•All new DirectCU thermal design utilizes six all-copper heatpipes and 20% bigger dissipation area, achieving 20% cooler and 14dB quieter performance than reference
•Acclaimed DIGI+ VRM with 12-phase Super Alloy Power technology delivers precise digital power and enhanced durability for stable overclocking
•VGA Hotwire allows you to plug and solder wires on the card’s voltage regulators and accurately read and control Vcore, Vmem, and PLL voltages on a hardware level
•GPU Tweak utility helps you modify and tune clock speeds, voltages, and fan performance via an intuitive interface
•One card drives up to six screens with AMD Eyefinity™ 6


It's also 3 times his stated budget.

OP: I can't find a good comparison of cards benchmarked on ACIII, but here's a chart at Anandtech for Batman: Arkham City @ 1920x1200 and Extreme quality settings. This is a pretty graphically demanding DirectX 11 game, so it should give an idea of relative performance for current/upcoming games.

You can get a GTX 560 Ti or 650 Ti (bonus: the 650 Ti's are coming with a free copy of ACIII) in your price range which would give you around 50 FPS in Batman @ the above settings.

To drive 3 monitors though, you'll need either an AMD card or an nVidia 600 series card (like the 650 Ti). nVidia's 500 series cards only support 2 monitors from 1 card (excepting some unique configurations that their AIBs designed).

#8 AimLXJ

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:46

So, my EAH5670 just isn't cutting it anymore. I've been looking for a new card for the past two months or so, but I can't seem to bet myself to decide on one, and even when I do, I'm not sure. What are some tips to look for a graphics card? Is there some guide out there? I know that it's recommended to buy cards just by looking at specs, it's mostly about benchmarks, but I can't seem to find some relevant benchmarks online. Not only that, I don't want it for just gaming. I do lots of high resolution Photoshop work along with HD video editing, but I also want to play games like Assassin's Creed III on the highest settings on a card that won't dip under 30 frames.

I was wondering if such a card exists that's in the $100-$150 range. Should I spend more? I would love some examples, but more than anything, I would love a sort of guide on how to properly search for cards. Thanks!


Pretty much this is what I say to my friends when they look for a video card when I'm not not available, "just go to YouTube and search up the video card that interest you, and if you like what you see in the video then buy it" :rofl:

Example, for the GTX 660 Ti, you see different kind of games being played with it (along with different setups so FPS will vary) and if you like what you see then buy it :laugh: . As for what you SHOULD look for they are

Video RAM: If you're planning on playing at 1080p then you need a minimum of 1GB, preferably ~1.5GB, but current generation of video cards comes with ~2-4-GB which is nice. Also, new games that supports "ultra high" textures requires more than 1GB of video RAM, such as Skyrim's High Definition add-on, Battlefield 3 on ultra high, and Alien vs. Predator 2010 (last I played, AvP was using ~1.7GB :o ). Another thing, you probably want 1GB or more since you work with PhotoShop and HD videos.

Memory Interface Width: This one is tough to say since it varies across GDDR3, GDDR4, and GDDR5, but generally it goes something like this (for the sake of simplicity):
128-bit and below: Low end
192-bit: Mid range
192-bit+ (256-bit+? :rofl:): High end

As for the rest of the video card, it's best to do a benchmark since it's not easy to say what's good and what's bad just from reading the specifications unless you have years of experience, such as memory and core clock; therefore, you can give take a look at AnandTech's GPU benchmark

I hope that helps

#9 Wakers

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 13:22

You're struggling with that budget, I would recommend a 660Ti at least but it's probably almost twice your budget.

Stick with Nvidia, they have a feature built into the Keplar (600 range) cards called CUDA which is GPU processing, it's great for Photoshop and the like, although obviously it won't be as good as having a dedicated workstation card like a Quadro.

#10 AimLXJ

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 13:39

You're struggling with that budget, I would recommend a 660Ti at least but it's probably almost twice your budget.

Stick with Nvidia, they have a feature built into the Keplar (600 range) cards called CUDA which is GPU processing, it's great for Photoshop and the like, although obviously it won't be as good as having a dedicated workstation card like a Quadro.



CUDA also helps in processing videos but that's if the program you're using supports CUDA (even PhotoShop) :)

#11 threetonesun

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 13:55

1GB 7850. It's better than the 650 Ti, about the same price. You can find them around $150 these days.

Unless you know your software can take advantage of the GPU, it's not worth considering at this point.

#12 OP ramzorz

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 04:32

Thank you guys all so much, especially AimLXJ! The memory interface information helps a lot. I want something that's a little more than 1GB of RAM to handle larger resolutions with multiple screens. As for workstation cards, that would be idea for the video and photo editing alone, but not so much for gaming. All of this information is relevant. Thanks guys! For those who might be curious of my system specs, take a look here. I would appreciate as much help as I can get. :)

http://i.imgur.com/DYKwZ.png

I have a 575 Watt PSU. I have an internal terabyte drive I plan on disconnecting (I only use it for backups). My current card runs on power from the motherboard alone.

#13 OP ramzorz

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 04:42

I'm currently looking at these two.
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814125444
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814121642

Is the extra $25 worth it for the Radeon (with the MIR)? It also might be worthy to mention that I'm going to purchase a new card near January. I'm just trying to educate myself on how to make a solid purchase on my own. These cares are nearly just for comparison purposes.

#14 Andre S.

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 05:05

CUDA also helps in processing videos but that's if the program you're using supports CUDA (even PhotoShop) :)

AMD graphics cards support OpenCL which is pretty much replacing CUDA nowadays. For instance Photoshop CS6 uses OpenCL instead of CUDA. OpenCL is supported by all graphics cards and is an open standard whereas CUDA is a proprietary NVIDIA system.

#15 Davo

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 05:32

Just out of curiosity, would this version of the above card be compatible with my Mobo? I'm unfamiliar with the different PCI x16 specs.

Mobo: http://h10025.www1.h...ct=5061012#N448

Card: http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814500271

My comp has a 300W PSU.

I'm drooling at the thought of quad-monitor support but realize that I'm limited sometimes because I only buy factory. Between lack of time and the inability to apply thermal paste, I've always just went with OEM. I frankly only like the card because it has dual HDMI too.

Even if that card isn't compatible/isn't a good brand/is too much for what I need, anything else that would support a three or four monitor setup?