The best graphic cards for gaming?

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What graphic cards do you prefer?

I don't care much for the power, the HD 6450 or GT240 are enough for me, best if silent.
1
25%
I like classic horsepower, Nvidia GT8800/9800/250 is all what I wanna.
1
25%
When the time calls I'm getting modern cards, from GT450/HD5750 up. After all they are twice time better performers than the GT9800 and all 'round that. Whereas eat less.
2
50%
 
Total votes: 4

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The best graphic cards for gaming?

Postby Pol » May 18 2012, 17:40

So what do you have in your rig? I always wanted powerful and silent card, like it was in the old times. Being nurtured by ATI Rage cards family, in my younger age I developed a strong affinity for silent power.

Placing one cooler on the cpu heatsing can provide you, considering some skewing and well thought out case, only one coooler per cpu. It will cool your psu and card(s), which must be constructed as passive units. An airflow in the case and that means quite noticeable air flow is required. Noctua can take care of it. Or could in my old computer. Newer rig is having two coolers, which is one cooler too much.

Having media pc and gaming rig in one is a nice idea, isn't it? :D

I have silent Gigabyte HD 5750 and the Power Color Go Green edition escaped me a little when I wanted it. I regret that. The Gigabyte card is not truly passive meant although it's quite well made. Now (TUL) they are coming with HD 7750, could it be the best silent perfomancer around?

What you are using/prefer? ;)

PS The TUL cards are always hard to purchase.

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Subquestion:
What card is da best for M&M:Heroes VI.?
Last edited by Pol on May 18 2012, 20:01, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby ThunderTitan » May 18 2012, 18:43

I'm def not getting another big 8800 type card again... too much hassle with the heat.

Something cheap (but good) and silent that i replace after two years sounds good to me.
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Postby BoardGuest808888 » May 19 2012, 6:19

Perhaps not the best cards there are, but I prefer silent card. But I never plan on replacing cards until after at least 5-6 years anyway, so most modern cards weren't really that important either.

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Postby Kalah » May 19 2012, 12:52

Here's what I ended up with.

Now I think I need a new CPU, so the whole motherboard needs upgrading, doesn't it ... Upgrading my old PC is fun, though. :)
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Postby GreatEmerald » May 19 2012, 15:53

I have a 3-year old Sapphire Radeon HD4890. So far it handles all of the games I want to play in full HD just fine, with power to spare (power that can be invested in AA, then). So I don't even see the reason to upgrade from it, not until there is something interesting that won't run properly with it (like Unreal III).

AMD just recently dropped official support for it, though. Which means that I'm stuck with Windows 7 and openSUSE 12.1 (or later, but with a downgraded X server). So I might have to upgrade to something else eventually anyway. But perhaps after a few years.

The processor, on the other hand...

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Postby GreatEmerald » May 19 2012, 16:15

Kalah wrote:Now I think I need a new CPU, so the whole motherboard needs upgrading, doesn't it ... Upgrading my old PC is fun, though. :)


Not necessarily. Motherboards support different CPU types, so you could find out what are the latest processors for your motherboard socket, then decide whether it's more viable to upgrade only the processor or both. Somewhat recent motherboards have pretty decent compatibility with different processors (AMD's Socket AM3 is compatible with everything with Socket AM2 as well, for instance, and some of Intel's Sandy Bridge sockets are forward-compatible with Ivy Bridge).

In my case, I have a Socket AM3 board with a Phenom II X4 925, and the processor is really slow for the feats of computing I'm trying to achieve (record and process 1080p video, that is). I could extend it up to the highest models of Phenom II X6 (hex-core, something around 3.8 GHz each). Though in my case, it's way too dangerous to attempt that. Upgrading a CPU only is somewhat dangerous all by itself due to the thermal paste, since it sticks very firmly to both the CPU and the CPU socket. Attempting to remove it might result in breaking either of the two (though the CPU is more fragile). And, if you haven't replaced the thermal paste in a while, then chances are that it is quite literally cooked into both, making the separation even more problematic. But in my case, it's even worse in that the CPU came with a bent pin when I ordered it originally. I didn't want to go through all the RMA, so I just straightened it myself. It worked, but the pin is a lot more fragile now, so attempting to separate the CPU for me would nearly guarantee that I break the CPU.

Then there's also the price. For instance, the high end Phenoms these days are way too expensive compared to what Intel has to offer, so it almost pays to buy a new motherboard by itself, as you save on the CPU price. In my case, it's also a bit more complicated, as my PC has a lot of fans (4 case fans, 1 CPU fan; also 1 GPU fan and 1 PSU fan), so I have to find a motherboard that allows to plug in 4 fans, when most motherboards offer only 1 or 2. And I also need a PCI slot for my sound card, and those are not available on all MBs these days.

Also keep in mind that motherboards these days nearly exclusively use DDR3 memory, instead of the earlier DDR2, so unless you had DDR3 memory already, you'll have to replace it as well. Though you'll be left with what is essentially a backup PC that you could fairly easily repurpose into a thin client or a game server ;)

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Postby Kalah » May 19 2012, 17:17

Well, since I have a dell 9100 series, it's pretty old, so modern twin/quad processors are out of the question, I guess ... But it would be nice to play some of the more high-end games without any graphics glitches.
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Postby Pol » May 19 2012, 17:40

My games do play well! :P

Which is almost exclusively KB & MM:H6, the other titles are much older. You should seen my wall from the gog. :)

The GT8800/9800/250 were a wonderful cards. Almost identical but with a high energy consumption compared to nowadays. The stronger today followers in the nvidia line would be GT450, GT550 and so on..

@GreatEmerald
You can remove heatsink from cpu easily, the thermal paste should be always "baked" between processor and the cooler. It must be for best heat transmission. It's intended and especially necessary for ceramic paste.
When you release the safety lock, then rotate softly the heating a little left and a little right. Paste will loose the grip. And you can remove cooler with ease. (Whereas CPU is still safely attached to the board.)

With CPU it's funny. Do you know that Ivy Bridgy is worse for temperature dissipation than older Sandy Bridge? (Intel) The reason is the used thermal paste in the compound.

@Kalah
What CPU and MB do you have now?
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Postby GreatEmerald » May 19 2012, 18:01

Pol wrote:You can remove heatsink from cpu easily, the thermal paste should be always "baked" between processor and the cooler. It must be for best heat transmission. It's intended and especially necessary for ceramic paste.
When you release the safety lock, then rotate softly the heating a little left and a little right. Paste will loose the grip. And you can remove cooler with ease. (Whereas CPU is still safely attached to the board.)

With CPU it's funny. Do you know that Ivy Bridgy is worse for temperature dissipation than older Sandy Bridge? (Intel) The reason is the used thermal paste in the compound.


Interesting. Still, in my case, considering the bent pin and the fact that Intel is a whole lot better than anything AMD has so far (they're all in the mobile market these days...), it's probably better to go with a new motherboard either way. Oh, and USB3 :D

As for cooling, it's quite funny in my current PC in that the thermal readings for Tcase are higher than the ones for Tcore. It's somewhat implausible, even. But I guess that's due to the current board having some issues with temperature reporting. On every boot, I get this friendly message in my dmesg:

Code: Select all

> dmesg | grep thermal
[    7.227889] k10temp 0000:00:18.3: unreliable CPU thermal sensor; monitoring disabled

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Postby Pol » May 19 2012, 18:24

@GreatEmerald
Yea. Planning to try Ubuntu Studio 12.04 very soon. :D
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Postby Kalah » May 24 2012, 18:40

Pol wrote:@Kalah
What CPU and MB do you have now?


It doesn't look promising.
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Postby Pol » May 24 2012, 21:51

You're not out of luck. You may buy new case, psu, mem, cpu and mb. It's noz so costly how it seems.

(And some cpu & system coolers)

You have way to go! ;)
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Postby Kalah » May 24 2012, 22:05

Already bought new video card, HDD and RAM, remember? ;)
Next up is screen and CPU.
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Postby Pol » May 25 2012, 5:50

That's in mist after morning. :D But, you will likely need to buy all what i said together.
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Postby Pol » May 27 2012, 7:03

@Kalah
You may try following upgrade path up :D

<ot>
  • ASRock A75M-HVS (cheap and effective solution, comparable to Dell or HP used boards but not so ultra like MSI or Gigabyte, ASRock operate under Asus)
  • DDR3 Kingston 2*4GB (KHX1600C9D3K2/8G)
  • CPU AMD Athlon II X4 651 Quad Box (3,0GHz, 4MB, without implemented VGA)
  • CoolerMaster Elite 360, black, (effectively you can use 1HDD and 1 DVD-ROM inside, VGA Width: 140mm, Length: 230 at maximum, so a bit less there are usually some cables in the way, should fit your small GT250 but check)
  • Fortron AURUM 500W 80PLUS GOLD (5years warranty, better to check otherwise roll to some cheaper solution aka seasonic, coolermaster, etc.. or you may roll up to enermax :) )
  • Coolermaster GeminII S524,low profile silent (Perhaps good idea to put on CPU)
  • LCD Dell U2412M UltraSharp IPS 16:10/ Pivot/DP (very nice colors, HP is also producing cheap IPS panels, 8ms works very well until you are not into exxtreme MP shooters, in that case only classic TFT panel comes to mind.)
  • & Windows 7

    >> Cause if you have Windows XP OEM on the old computer, you cannot transfer the licence and technically it also wouldn't be a good idea to do so. Also, speaking as a lawyer .. there's going to be more difficult You cannot buy OEM licence - as you already have a HDD, which is against Microsoft definition of assembled computer:
    "Customer System” means a fully assembled computer system that includes a CPU, a motherboard, a power supply, an internally mounted NAND or revolving magnetic-based hard drive, and a case. For Server products, a hard drive and separate power supply are not required. A Customer System must meet the system requirements of the software as posted on http://www.microsoft.com and must be able to run the Software."

    Linky 1,2 but you can easily buy GGK legalization kit which comes with both installation mediums 32/64bits or another HDD, cheap nandHDD for running the games blazingly fast. :P

    Remember, for fulfilling the microsoft licence all pc stuff enumerated in "Customer system" sentence must be bought on the same invoice or in the same day.

</ot>
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Postby Kalah » May 27 2012, 11:34

Thank you - I will keep your post and come back to it later, when it is time to start. :)
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Postby GreatEmerald » May 30 2012, 19:43

Hmm, that's a somewhat low-powered machine there, then, but I guess it matches the graphics card. I still don't see it very viable in this day and age (my PC is three years old, and it is still 50% faster than the new card you got, so...). Although Pol's suggested CPU does beat mine.

Fortron? Never heard of them. Best to invest wisely into PSUs, anyway, and that amounts to getting something from well-known brands.

Hm, apparently these days Win7 amounts to $100. Or you could say "screw that!" and go use Linux :D With an NVIDIA card, most games should be playable through Wine without too much trouble.

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Postby mordredrs » Jun 5 2012, 11:53

I'm using: ATI 5770 + Phenon X4 955 Black Series and 2X 2GB DDR3 - i've no trouble running MMH6 or Guild Wars 2 at the top resolution.
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Postby GreatEmerald » Jun 7 2012, 12:44

Hmm, now that AMD has officially dropped support for my graphics card, it makes me wonder when NVIDIA is going to drop support for their cards and up to which. It's been a while since they did so, actually. First they dropped support for everything up to (and including) the GeForce 4 series (4xxx), then they dropped support for the single GeForce 5 series (5xxx), and since then they have been supporting every single card. Given that AMD has discontinued support for cards released in 2009, it really feels like it's time for NVIDIA to drop some support, too.

I'd imagine that their transition from the 9 (9xxx) to the 100 (1xx) series would be a natural break point, especially since 200 series cards were released in 2008-2009. So I'd expect them to drop support for everything up to and including the 100 series (as it's based on their older hardware) sometime soon.

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Postby Pol » Jul 29 2012, 8:16

Or you may remount your existing cooler and replace it with Noctua NF-P12-1300 or the older NF-S12B (with 600rpm as minimum ULNA). Which I will (maybe) try soon. The first one feature silent comb blades - so the generated noise is pleasant, they say, to human ears.

Usually you can remount it in your case as front-back cooler, on the CPU if you have the right type of the cpu cooler (ie the one which can use standard system coolers) or on the card/mount it on the passive card with the same conditions.

@GreatEmerald
Fortron is known and reliable PSU 'factory'. For these who don't know theirs build quality is loosely said, around Chieftec. They do have their own designs though - so it's not really comparable. On my scale they are doing one of the second best PSUs on the market. (First being Enermax fighting with Seasonic).
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