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Help me Choose a GRAPHICS CARD.

VeritasCoVeritasCo Junior MemberPosts: 5Registered Users
edited January 2011 in Technology
Motherboard (MOBO): D975XBX
Graphics Card (GPU) : Radeon X1950 (512mb)
Processor (CPU): Intel Core 2 duo E6700
RAM: 2GB (DDR2)
Operating System (OS): XP

I am trying to make a decision on what graphics card to buy to upgrade to something better. I am in the UK so if anyone can recommend some good deals please let me know. MY graphics interface is PCI-E x16 and I currently have a Radeon X1950 but I would like something that will allow me to use Shogun in the higher graphical settings.

Is the SAPPHIRE ATI Radeon HD 5570 PCI-E 1GB worth buying? Should I get something better? I only want to spend no more than £150, less if possible. But it needs to be a reasonable improvement over what I already have.

Thanks.
Post edited by VeritasCo on

Comments

  • VeritasCoVeritasCo Junior Member Posts: 5Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Also, is it worth me getting a card that uses Direct 11 and upgrading windows?
  • LunosLunos Member Posts: 40Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Hi! I'm by no means a computer expert however I do know that later versions of Windows such as 7 require a LOT more RAM than you currently have so I don't think it would be a good idea to upgrade from XP unless you get additional RAM. A better video card might net you slightly higher graphics but with your dual core processor and low RAM it might not be cost effective to do so. My recommendation is simply to save your money for awhile and in a year or so buy a new rig :)

    If you absolutely want to get a new video card however I own an nVidia GTX 470 card. (Huge nVidia fanboy alert) and I love it aside from the obscene amounts of heat it produces when running graphically intense programs. It can and WILL bake your computer unless you manually manage it. I've heard good things about the 5000 series of ATI as well however they suffer the same heat problem. The price just dropped on the GTX 400 series and ATI 5000 since they released the next gen cards not too long ago.
  • evotucevotuc Senior Member Posts: 983Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Hey V, how are you?

    This will probably get moved to Technology Discussion, but I will try to help you.

    You see, the problem is, any card that will run S2 on high and utilize Direct X 11 will have a PCI Express x16 2.0 interface. Do you have it in your budget for a new board and maybe a new CPU also?
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  • LunosLunos Member Posts: 40Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Haha evotuc if he does that, than he basically just built a new computer from scratch since he would need more RAM as well AND the video card :p
  • SugamSugam Senior Member Posts: 400Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    you would do better with more ramm then a better video card imo. even if you got a better video card, it will be limited with the 2gig ramm.

    on a side note, i feel your pain in having to upgrade and all. when I build a pc, I try to make sure it would be upgradeable for at lest 2 years. SLI has helped me a lot in it as well.
  • evotucevotuc Senior Member Posts: 983Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Lunos wrote: »
    Haha evotuc if he does that, than he basically just built a new computer from scratch since he would need more RAM as well AND the video card :p


    Yep, that's what I was leading up to.
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  • evotucevotuc Senior Member Posts: 983Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Let me just say again, that any graphics card capable of running S2 on even lower graphics levels will have a PCI-E x16 2.0 connection. That which your board does not have.
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  • LunosLunos Member Posts: 40Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Even if his motherboard doesn't have PCI-E 2.0, the new cards can still run on it, just not to their best ability. I'm fairly certain he can run S2 just fine with his current setup although another 2gigs of RAM would go a long way.
  • RumpullpusRumpullpus Senior Member Posts: 1,216Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    might as well go for the ATI 6000 series if you want DX11 and run the game the best. if you dont care about DX11 the ATI 4000 series will probably run it just as well.

    after this though you should really think about upgrading to a better computer, XP is already starting to get fased out. that and a 64-bit OS will alow you to use more RAM which your gonna need soon too.
  • VeritasCoVeritasCo Junior Member Posts: 5Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Lunos wrote: »
    Even if his motherboard doesn't have PCI-E 2.0, the new cards can still run on it, just not to their best ability. I'm fairly certain he can run S2 just fine with his current setup although another 2gigs of RAM would go a long way.


    Everyone, thanks for the input up to now.

    Lunos I believe you are correct in thinking that the new cards can still run using my motherboard. That is something I checked up.

    I might still just get a graphics card and my PC is still in excellent working condition, but I am open to the idea of buying a new PC. How much do you think I could get in return for my old computer? I know computers devalue very quickly, and my old PC was purchased in the later part of 2006. It is an Alienware, which might help its value. For a new computer I would probably not spend more than £1000 ($1590), but that would be pushing it to my limit. So if you have any suggestions for something that will last me for the next few years and run Shogun really well please let me know. Deals anyone? Good places to shop? I like to do things online if possible.

    (funny how this has gone from my asking about graphic cards to buying a new computer lol)
  • RumpullpusRumpullpus Senior Member Posts: 1,216Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    well first of all DONT BUY AN ALIENWARE COMPUTER! talk about overpriced.....

    second do they have a best buy in the UK? look for a computer that has a good CPU (look at the GHz higher the better) multi-core CPUs are good at multi-tasking might think about a 2 core (they have been around longest) but its up to whatever you want.
    things i wouldnt worry about when buying a PC is the video card (out of the factory its gonna be ****ty but can always be replaced) and the RAM (again can always be replaced or added too).

    since your old computer is an alienware i assume you dont know much about how to install hardware, you should get used to and practice installing new hardware unless you want to pay someone out the butt to do it for you (not recomended).

    o and the old computer hmmm....... you might find a sucker willing to shovel a good amount of cash for it since its alienware. i dont know how much pounds (since im american) but i would say given what i read you could probably sell it for $150. $300 if you can sell the name on someone.

    so basicly just buy a standard tower (nice and roomy) with a good fast CPU even if it cant run much out of the box the CPU is pritty much the only thing you cant upgrade in your computer.
  • VeritasCoVeritasCo Junior Member Posts: 5Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Rumpullpus wrote: »
    well first of all DONT BUY AN ALIENWARE COMPUTER! talk about overpriced.....

    second do they have a best buy in the UK? look for a computer that has a good CPU (look at the GHz higher the better) multi-core CPUs are good at multi-tasking might think about a 2 core (they have been around longest) but its up to whatever you want.
    things i wouldnt worry about when buying a PC is the video card (out of the factory its gonna be ****ty but can always be replaced) and the RAM (again can always be replaced or added too).

    since your old computer is an alienware i assume you dont know much about how to install hardware, you should get used to and practice installing new hardware unless you want to pay someone out the butt to do it for you (not recomended).

    so basicly just buy a standard tower (nice and roomy) with a good fast CPU even if it cant run much out of the box the CPU is pritty much the only thing you cant upgrade in your computer.

    I have installed hardware in the past before my Alienware PC, so I am ok with that. It is simple enough to do. And yes I would I agree they are overpriced. Nevertheless it has worked like a dream for more than four years, so you definitely get quality inside. But they are certainly overpriced on reflection.

    We do have a best buy so I will look into that and see what I can find.
  • LunosLunos Member Posts: 40Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    In my humble opinion you really don't need a new computer JUST yet. While your rig is definitely older it still has enough power to run all the newest gamest although obviously not on the highest detail setting. It really comes down to whether you want want to spend the money or not, totally up to you. If you still want a new rig though Rumpul was right on about pretty much everything. Find a fast i7 CPU and go from there. Everything else is secondary and can easily be upgraded after market. If you're confident in your ability to piece together your own rig than newegg.com has a large selection of parts. Despite what Rumpl said about Alienwares being overpriced their computers prices have actually fallen A LOT recently and are pretty competitive with prices from other companies from what I've seen. Not that I would encourage you to buy from them but definitely look around.
  • SkelligSkellig Junior Member Posts: 24Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Lunos wrote: »
    In my humble opinion you really don't need a new computer JUST yet. While your rig is definitely older it still has enough power to run all the newest gamest although obviously not on the highest detail setting. It really comes down to whether you want want to spend the money or not, totally up to you.


    I've got to agree with Lunos here.

    Your mobo should be fine (have you updated it?)

    http://communities.intel.com/message/42984


    All I see for you to upgrade is RAM and graphics card (perhaps 6850?)

    Oh, and overclock that duo core!
  • LunosLunos Member Posts: 40Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    One last thing which I'm sure you are already aware from your first post but Windows XP only runs up to DX9 so you get less bang for you buck from a new video card as well as only utilizing PCI-E 1.0 instead of 2.0. Unless you're planning on keeping that video card and importing it over to a new rig in the near future I wouldn't go overboard on a new video card.
  • evotucevotuc Senior Member Posts: 983Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Yes, your board will take a PCI E 2.0, downgrading it to a 1.0, but you will be bottlenecking your entire system. Try it. I have. It's a waste of money.
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  • AlJabberwockAlJabberwock Moderator USAPosts: 7,729Moderators, Tech Moderators, Knights
    edited January 2011
    The information is more or less accurate and the suggestions pretty spot on. Here are two BTWs for posters and the OP: Your video card is by far the biggest problem, then your Ram, then your OS, and then the aging tech on your MOBO and everything that neccessarily has to connect through that Victorian architecture.

    1)The OP has stated he is in the UK, and does NOT have access to Newegg.com for anything other than reference-and the price/market may be completely different, so it is of limited usefulness. We have already seen that two major suppliers online in the UK are
    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/index.php
    and
    http://www.ebuyer.com/

    although regular readers will note that BloodyBlade had trouble trying to return a part to the former reference because he had opened the box...

    2)On E buyer one may note a 460 1gb in the 130 quid range, and a 5770 well under that, with the 5850 (an XFX) nearly within reach at around 150. My suggestion? Wait a week or two, they'll be lower. They are not yesterday's news, they're now last year's. You don't need them now, you just want them now ;). The game isn't out until March 15th..heck you might have more trouble even FINDING some of the cards they are advertising now in a couple of weeks, because they already aren't making them anymore.

    Note that the market and dollar equivalency of these cards are not TOO far off the USD equivalency in north america, although offerings do vary and price is not strictly predictable for various features and makers.

    Nota Bene, XFX cards carry a double lifetime warrnaty, and some EVGA (the AR series cards) carry lifetime warranties. Given a choice, those are my preferences respectively for AMD or NVidia graphics cards.

    As a final comment, it is without a doubt rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic to 'patch-up' the capabilities of your current system. The question is how much good money shall you send after bad, and WHEN will you bite the bullet and move into the 21st century. If it could be now, now isn't a bad time. Wait another month and some things that were brand new 6 months ago will be selling like three year old stuff did last year. Top performing CPUS are all Intel. Top performing Cards are NVidia, however, the competition (which happens to be AMD in both cases) has near-competitors at much better price/performance ratios. In US dollars as a fun task, Evotuc and I each built competitive machines for $1k -and they were pretty good machines. Pretty _Danged_ good. In a month, they would look even better, for even less.

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  • Maeda_ToshiieMaeda_Toshiie Senior Member SingaporePosts: 3,601Registered Users
    edited January 2011
    Hmm, local Sandy Bridge stocks right now keep getting depleted as soon as they are restocked. The EOLness of the current AMD line doesn't help.

    If possible, IMO, OP should get a 2nd card that is relatively superior to his current card, and maybe overclock his CPU (if the mobo allows it and OP is comfortable with doing so). Thereafter, consider getting a new system sometime in 2012. By then Bulldozer would be out and Sandy Bridge be mature with perhaps lower prices.
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