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Current Top Picks for "Graphics Cards"

38 posts in this topic

Posted

Graphics cards are usually the first thing someone thinks about when deciding to upgrade their computer a slight bit. Sometimes it can even be a major upgrade, but in either case it is always considered a focal point for any computer build. If your going to invest money in your pc, definately put priority on your GPU. Here are the current picks for what we feel gives you the best value in graphics today. Remember if your serious about purchasing one of these, think about using our links to amazon, as doign so will donate part of the proceeds to our community!

Our Current Pick: EVGA 460 GTX



At 150$, theres not many reasons you shouldn't already be owning one of these cards. To date, there is not a single game that this card cannot max out on 1920x1080, and on top of that, it offers the best performance-to-cost ratio that we've ever seen. Its a no brainer at the moment, that if you plan on upgrading from a previous 2xx or even 8xxx generation, this should be your first pick.

Runner-Up: EVGA 560 GTX



While this card outperforms the above 460, it does not make up for it in price. Coming in at 250$, this card is aimed at those who wants an extra 4-5fps in today's current games. It is by all means a solid competitor, but considering the 460 gtx is capable of maxing out any game on a 24" monitor anyway, its arguable that upgrading to a 560 would even be worth it, aside from running multiple monitors.

Bleeding-Edge: EVGA 580 GTX



If your looking for top-notch framerates, and have the cash to spare. There is little that matches the quality of this card. Although it doesn't perform at the same level of ATI's latest offering, it's driver support is considered by many to be above that of ATI, so we give the crown to nvidia again...this time. Again, the performance gains vs $$$ spent puts this card into the computers of only the most extreme enthusiasts.

Feel free to add yor own picks, and give a mini-review/reason as well! This thread will be updated on a monthly basis.

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Posted

Since i'm a relative newbie that needed help to build my first desktop, does OC'ing the graphics card end up giving better fps compared to the non-overclocked version of the GTX460?

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Posted


Since i'm a relative newbie that needed help to build my first desktop, does OC'ing the graphics card end up giving better fps compared to the non-overclocked version of the GTX460?


i believe OC'ing increases the speeed of the gpu, so i think you might see an improvement in fps if you do so. but you gotta make sure you have sufficient cooling otherwise itll overheat, and if your gpu already has heating issues, then id avoid OCing entirely.

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Posted


i believe OC'ing increases the speeed of the gpu, so i think you might see an improvement in fps if you do so. but you gotta make sure you have sufficient cooling otherwise itll overheat, and if your gpu already has heating issues, then id avoid OCing entirely.


Ah ok. I was just checking Amazon to see what they have in stock. They had one that was OC'd and one that wasn't.

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Posted

I actually have a 460 right now, and it's an amazingly solid card. I can max everything that I've played at 1680x1050 and get well over 60fps, until I bottleneck at my CPU, but that's another story. The 460 has yet to bog, and I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in upgrading their GPU before GW2 beta hits, as I'm sure it will be fully capable of running it on max settings with a great framerate.

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Posted

yup im thinking of getting it closer to launch, maybe it'll be even cheaper then

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Posted

The factory-OC'd cards are a good choice when the price gap isn't that great. They most often are coupled with a decent enough cooler to handle the OC, and on top of that, they have a higher chance of being of better yield which in turn means they can be OC'd even further.

That said, I have a GTX 460 (not factory-OC'd) myself which works perfectly fine with a decent overclock (675->840 core and 1800->2020 memory). It definitely is in every way extremely good value for its price.

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Posted

i just bought a Radeon HD 6670 off Amazon, for less then $90. I thought it was a pretty good deal, and ill be sure to update when it gets here and i can try it out ;)

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Posted

Sooo I actually got the card like 2 days after i ordered it (Amazon FTW). But, I really love it, I had an issue with my last card (HD4670), If i had the settings on anything other then low, my computer would freeze, and id have to restart. Its a huge issue that i found out was happening to a lot of people. so i looked into a new card. After like a week of going through at least 20. i decided on the HD 6670 for just under $90. With this card, it has no problem playing SC2 on ultra settings, and any other game I want to run on it. The only problem I have with this card, is that you cannot use its DVI-D and VGA ports at the same time. this was a huge issue for me, as i always run 2 monitors and my secondary one is VGA only. So after hours of trying everything I could think of, I just came to the conclusion that i just need up upgrade that monitor. Apparently the hdmi port works fine with the DVI-D port, so once I find an adapter, I should be able to run both my monitors without a problem. Over all, I'd give this card an 8/10, because for me, the monitor problem was a killer.

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Posted

I just bought myself a Sapphire HD6950 Dirt3 edition from a local store, for the sole reason that there were no 460s in Australia (even online) that sell for less than $250 at the time of purchase with no delivery cost. In addition, RMA for me is really easy as the store is just a few blocks away.

I also bought an ATI because of it's single-card triple monitor capabilities, even though I know that soon Nvidia will be following suit. My only problem right now is that I have no monitors that support displayport and the active adapter isn't worth it for the other monitors I have xD. So I am STILL stuck on 2 monitors...

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Posted

Personally I use an EVGA Superclocked Nvidia GTX 570. It's ~90% of the performance of the 580 for ~70% of the price so I think it's a pretty good deal.

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Posted

I will tell you after all the dual screen driver troubles with my ATI card, I'm going back to Nvidia with my next gaming maching (2015 or so).

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Posted

So, this came to fruition soon then I thought. My graphics card started having a heat problem last night and I know why - the fan is dying hard. I'm going to be picking up a graphics card today, one of these!

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Posted

Cool, let us know which one you get, and how you like it. I'm looking to upgrade soonish, maybe early next year.

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Posted

I went with the 560 Ti DS Superclocked.

If you look at www.hwcompare.com the 560 actually destroys the 460 and I can't spend $500 on a 580 so it seemed a good buy for price and ability. The 560 488 is a better card but with the appeal of devs trying to get games to play on any system it can come down to "how much do you really need". I just like to play, the game doesn't have to look perfect for me to still enjoy it and the card I got will run any game really well.

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Posted

What makes the 560 Ti 488 that much better? Is it just cause they slapped more better cores on it since they had them sitting around?

Also, on a side note, how important is VRAM. I hear very mixed opinions about it. Some say its good for performance, others say it really has no use unless you're using a 2500x1600 or larger display. I mean with a really good CPU and more than enough system RAM can't that make up for lack of VRAM?

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Posted

WARNING: Extremely simplified analogy follows:

Think of processor cores as mathematicians, and RAM as the mathematician's notebook. Your CPU is a collection of master mathematicians with one really big notebook (or two notebooks if you run dual-channel RAM, but that's beyond the scope of this analogy). The master mathematicians are happy to give internal processes and hardware processes a page or two to write on as needed. Your GPU is a herd of mathematicians that have art fetishes. VRAM is their notebook. Sure, they can borrow a page from the CPU, but wouldn't having their own notebook be more efficient? Also, the more mathematicians available, in either pool, the more resources you have at your disposal, making tasks like drawing triangles faster.

So yes, slapping more cores in because they can makes it better, and VRAM is a good thing in any situation.

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Posted

Great explanation unff, +1!

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Posted


WARNING: Extremely simplified analogy follows:

Think of processor cores as mathematicians, and RAM as the mathematician's notebook. Your CPU is a collection of master mathematicians with one really big notebook (or two notebooks if you run dual-channel RAM, but that's beyond the scope of this analogy). The master mathematicians are happy to give internal processes and hardware processes a page or two to write on as needed. Your GPU is a herd of mathematicians that have art fetishes. VRAM is their notebook. Sure, they can borrow a page from the CPU, but wouldn't having their own notebook be more efficient? Also, the more mathematicians available, in either pool, the more resources you have at your disposal, making tasks like drawing triangles faster.

So yes, slapping more cores in because they can makes it better, and VRAM is a good thing in any situation.


Wow... I'm just in awe of how amazing that explanation is. It makes a lot of sense when it is put that way.

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Posted

Seems that the 560 GTX is now down to the $195 price point, and might supplant the 460 as an upgrade yes?

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Posted

I'd have to go with the AMD Radeon 7950/7970.

Nothing Nvidia has right now comes close. The GCN architecture is too good.

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Posted

Drivers. AMD drivers are horrible, always have been, always will be. Also the price for those is outrageous. One doesn't need to spend 1/2 their paycheck on the graphics card to get a great experience.

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Posted


Drivers. AMD drivers are horrible, always have been, always will be. Also the price for those is outrageous. One doesn't need to spend 1/2 their paycheck on the graphics card to get a great experience.


I have never had a problem with AMD drivers in single card configurations going back to the Radeon x1800 series. Although I always use ATI tray tools.

AMD drivers are fine unless you Crossfire them, then you have to wait sometimes for them to work properly.
But NV have that same problem sometimes.

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Posted

My experience with ATI cards has been horrible. I'm switching to Nvidia when the time comes to upgrade. The drivers are part of the problem, like Orz said. I'm willing to trade a little bit of performance for reliability.

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