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Video Card Upgrade Confusion?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Hello All,

I'm getting ready to upgrade my system (for gaming, BF3, DIABLO III, Crysis 2 & Metal of Honor Warfighter etc) & have a few questions about some of the video cards I'm looking at.

I've been looking at new graphics cards & I'm a "little" confused. lol

Why is it that some of the 500 series are more money than some of the 600 series cards.. & why are some of the 400 series more than the 500 series?

I thought the higher number, 660 GTX would be better than a 580 GTX no.. what makes the 580 GTX better than a 660 GTX?

I've looked at the specs on the cards & I just don't get it.. BRAIN FART!!

What are the specs to look for?

Core Clock?

Boost Clock?

Cuda Cores?

Effective Memory Clock?

Memory Size?

Memory Interface?

What is the best Geforce card I can get for $250.00 & be able to play the above games on ULTRA @ around 30+ FPS?
Thanks All, Phil B.

Current System Specs:
Case: Cooler Master HAF 922
Motherboard: EVGA 680i SLI A2 122-CK-NF68
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 2.40GHz
Graphics Card: EVGA 8800GTS 640MB
Hard Drive: Western Digital VelociRaptor 300GB SATA 6 Gb/s 32MB Cache16MB Cache
RAM: OCZ 2x512 & 2x1GB Gold GX XTC PC2-6400.
Power Supply: CORSAIR TX650W
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5 4690K MSi Z97M GAMING EVGA GTX 960 SSC Kingston HyperX Savage 
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Samsung 850 EVO SSD M.2 Corsair Hydro Series H100i GTX Windows 10 64-bit LG 21:9 ULTRAWIDE 29UM57 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
G.SKILL RIPJAWS KM780 MX - Cherry MX Red Switches EVGA SuperNOVA 650 G1 80+ GOLD 650W Fully Modular ThermalTake Core V21 Logitech G602 
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Creative SB X-Fi Titanium 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5 4690K MSi Z97M GAMING EVGA GTX 960 SSC Kingston HyperX Savage 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Samsung 850 EVO SSD M.2 Corsair Hydro Series H100i GTX Windows 10 64-bit LG 21:9 ULTRAWIDE 29UM57 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
G.SKILL RIPJAWS KM780 MX - Cherry MX Red Switches EVGA SuperNOVA 650 G1 80+ GOLD 650W Fully Modular ThermalTake Core V21 Logitech G602 
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Creative SB X-Fi Titanium 
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post #2 of 4
Anandtech has a great comparison tool. Here is the 580 and the 660. It depends on a number of things including the resolution you game at.
Surfin' Bird
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AJ's Rig
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Jarvis
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
P8700 2.53GHz Core 2 Duo Apple nVidia 9400m Mushkin 2X4GB PC3-8500 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
750GB Seagate SSHD OPTIARC DVD RW AD-5670S Apple fan/heatsink Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
2X Dell E2211H Apple Wireless External 100W power brick Apple Mac mini 
MouseAudioOtherOther
Apple Magic Mouse Radio Shack Centrios headphones Logitech C310 Webcam w/ mic Buffalo Combo4 1TB External FW800 drive 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5-6600K Gigabyte GA-H67N-USB3-B3 EVGA GTX 970 Superclocked ACX 2.0 G.Skill Sniper 2X4GB 1333MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Sandisk X110 256GB SSD Hitachi 3TB HDD Toshiba TS-TB23L BD-ROM Slot drive Scythe Shuriken Rev.B 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
Enermax T.B.Silent 120mm fan Windows 7 HP 64-bit Samsung 21.5" LED Generic garbage 
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Silverstone ST45SF V2 450W SFF Silverstone SG05B-450 CM Sentinel $ store 
AudioOtherOther
Samson SR850 headphones Antlion Modmic microphone Logitech C310 Webcam 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
i5-2500 GA-H67N-USB3-B3 Team Vulcan HGST 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Seagate Seagate Gigastone Cooler Master TX3 
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Windows 10 Dell 21.5 Dell 21.5 Silverstone SF-450 
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Fractal Design Node 304 Syba JBOD SATA card 
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Surfin' Bird
(16 items)
 
AJ's Rig
(19 items)
 
Jarvis
(14 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
P8700 2.53GHz Core 2 Duo Apple nVidia 9400m Mushkin 2X4GB PC3-8500 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
750GB Seagate SSHD OPTIARC DVD RW AD-5670S Apple fan/heatsink Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
2X Dell E2211H Apple Wireless External 100W power brick Apple Mac mini 
MouseAudioOtherOther
Apple Magic Mouse Radio Shack Centrios headphones Logitech C310 Webcam w/ mic Buffalo Combo4 1TB External FW800 drive 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5-6600K Gigabyte GA-H67N-USB3-B3 EVGA GTX 970 Superclocked ACX 2.0 G.Skill Sniper 2X4GB 1333MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Sandisk X110 256GB SSD Hitachi 3TB HDD Toshiba TS-TB23L BD-ROM Slot drive Scythe Shuriken Rev.B 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
Enermax T.B.Silent 120mm fan Windows 7 HP 64-bit Samsung 21.5" LED Generic garbage 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Silverstone ST45SF V2 450W SFF Silverstone SG05B-450 CM Sentinel $ store 
AudioOtherOther
Samson SR850 headphones Antlion Modmic microphone Logitech C310 Webcam 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
i5-2500 GA-H67N-USB3-B3 Team Vulcan HGST 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Seagate Seagate Gigastone Cooler Master TX3 
OSMonitorMonitorPower
Windows 10 Dell 21.5 Dell 21.5 Silverstone SF-450 
CaseOther
Fractal Design Node 304 Syba JBOD SATA card 
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post #3 of 4
If you are going to spend $250 on a GPU, I highly suggest you get either a HD7870 or a HD7950 and it will EASILY max all those.
post #4 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sleeper_System View Post

Hello All,
I'm getting ready to upgrade my system (for gaming, BF3, DIABLO III, Crysis 2 & Metal of Honor Warfighter etc) & have a few questions about some of the video cards I'm looking at.
I've been looking at new graphics cards & I'm a "little" confused. lol
Why is it that some of the 500 series are more money than some of the 600 series cards.. & why are some of the 400 series more than the 500 series?
I thought the higher number, 660 GTX would be better than a 580 GTX no.. what makes the 580 GTX better than a 660 GTX?
I've looked at the specs on the cards & I just don't get it.. BRAIN FART!! Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
What are the specs to look for?
Core Clock?
Boost Clock?
Cuda Cores?
Effective Memory Clock?
Memory Size?
Memory Interface?
What is the best Geforce card I can get for $250.00 & be able to play the above games on ULTRA @ around 30+ FPS?
Thanks All, Phil B.
Current System Specs:
Case: Cooler Master HAF 922
Motherboard: EVGA 680i SLI A2 122-CK-NF68
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 2.40GHz
Graphics Card: EVGA 8800GTS 640MB
Hard Drive: Western Digital VelociRaptor 300GB SATA 6 Gb/s 32MB Cache16MB Cache
RAM: OCZ 2x512 & 2x1GB Gold GX XTC PC2-6400.
Power Supply: CORSAIR TX650W

Hmm.. How to say this. nVidia releases a "line" of cards, a family if you will. From budget all teh way up to bleeding edge enthusiast, they releases a family with similiar architecture that performs well at certain price points.

In about 12-18 months later, they release a new family. The family as a whole is usually around 10-20 percent faster. So, 10-20% faster on the budget end performs a bit faster. Now, there is no way that nVidia can release its budget cards that cost $100 that can compete with last years bleeding edge cards, not possible. Maybe the second fastest card in the new generation can, but not the budget one.

Or, if you don't get that, lets look at cars. Okay, the "family" of Chevrolets is the current crop. The current iteration of each brand. The 2012 Corvette is your top car, followed by your Camaro, then your Impala, then Malibu, then Cruze, then Sonic, then Cruze. This is a "family" because they all sorta look similiar (kinda the same chiseled look).

Lets say Chevy releases the next "family" of cars by 2016. Now, you say they have the same name, but each one has new features that the others might share, and they all get better performance (better mpg and better accelaration and top speed...). You might already know it, but over times, cars have gotten more horsepower while also getting better mpg, mainly due to new technology. Now, the new family is a generation newer than the old one. The thing is, you DO NOT expect the Chevy Sonic to be better than the old Corvette, just no way. Your new Camaro might have a better engine, be lighter, or have a better transmission that allows it to be faster than the old Corvette, but your new Impala or Malibu aren't going to be faster.

So, it is the same with GPUs. This year's budget cards will not perform faster than last year's bleeding edge enthusiast car. However, this years second tier card will probably be comparable to last years bleeding edge.

But, if you don't get that, then just start checking the benchmarks.

This is a good place to look... Best GPU increasing ammounts of money. On the last page is a "GPU tier list" that has each graphics card put on a tiered system based on performance. very nice as a reference.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-card-review,3107.html
Edited by ./Cy4n1d3\. - 10/14/12 at 10:42pm
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