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Need help choosing a video card

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
I recently built a fairly new system but excluded a video card dude to budget issues. I was on a $300 budget to build a system capable of playing CS, CS:S, Guild Wars, and various other games. It was quite successful using integrated graphics and my x2 3600+ at 2.85Ghz.

My dilemma now is that I need a good video card. My price range is anywhere from $0 to ~$125 USD respectively.

One catch, the clearance for the card is very limited as displayed by the pictures below. I am limited lengthwise because of the motherboards arrangement. The IDE cable is extremely close and possibly in the way for a video card to go any longer than it. I will soon replace it with a SATA drive but not soon enough so the card cannot exceed approx. 2" past the PCI-Express slot.. Along with that is the heatsink on the bottom and much other things in the way. I must find a card that performs well and meets my requirements.

Also please note that I have a ~420w (very stable and capable) power supply.

Thank you guys so much and I would really like to order tonigh (rep always involved for those worthy).

P.S. I bolded all the requirements for those who are too lazy to read my massive essay.

    
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post #2 of 25
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814130332
8800 GS, $110 after rebate, EVGA
No matter what you get, choose EVGA. You get 90 day step-up period to a better card, you pay the difference, lifetime warranty even if OC'ing mildly and 100% as long as no physical damage done by you (if something breaks, but not due to your reasonable OC, they will still RMA it, but when I say mild I mean mild), have 24/7 US English support, etc.
Just make sure to register your card when you receive it and send in the rebates promptly.
Good Luck :]
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post #3 of 25
8800GS will challenge the PSU and the space in the case.

8600GT/GTS will fit and should work with the PSU. My 8600GTS lets me play Crysis at decent settings. They're going to be in your price range before rebate, and well within it after rebates.

EDIT: Mine goes approximately an inch to an inch and a quarter past the PCI slot. It's right below the first pair of DIMM slots.
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post #4 of 25
Thread Starter 
Thank you but that card will not fit my space requirements. The plastic enclosure will no doubt hit my heat-sink and the length of the card is just too much. As far as eVga's warranty goes, yes I have heard all about them and I love them for what they do.

But once again, thank you for your input. I want this card but it just wont fit..

Quote:
Originally Posted by [pi] View Post
8800GS will challenge the PSU and the space in the case.

8600GT/GTS will fit and should work with the PSU. My 8600GTS lets me play Crysis at decent settings. They're going to be in your price range before rebate, and well within it after rebates.
I was considering one in this series due to the very good size (will fit just fine) and low power requirements. Thanks for your input.
    
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post #5 of 25
Yeah, an 8800GS is a great card, but if you don't trust rebates (like me) then you should go with a 7600GT for $86.99 (Edit: Oops! It's out of stock right now.). My friend has one in his computer and he plays HL2 (uses the source engine too) at 1440x900 with medium settings and 50-60FPS on average.
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post #6 of 25
Benchmarks
3DMark05:12,801
3DMark06:8,428
AquaMark3:147,194

Those were on stock settings, to give you a good gauge.

This series should be perfect for your price range, needs, and limitations.
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Cr-48
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post #7 of 25
Thread Starter 
I think I am just going to get an eVga 8600GTS for $90 after a decent rebate. Is the 8600GTS that much better than an 8600GT?
    
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post #8 of 25
I found this thread if it helps.

You should be fine with either model. I think the GTS come with better coolers though, iirc. I forget if the GT models do or not.
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post #9 of 25
The 8600gts is much better than the gt, plus you can overclock. Not an amzing card, but it will get the job done.
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post #10 of 25
My buddy and I have pretty much identical builds with the exception of him having the 8600GTS in SLi and we score pretty much the same in all benchmark tests we have done. He is usually no more than 10-20 points higher than me.

So which ever you decide you wont be disappointed.
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