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anybody else having a tough time deciding which graphics to buy

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Golden Member
Aug 26, 2008
Is that a real product? The only PhysX PPU cards I've ever seen are PCI not PCI-E 1x. And while you can still find them new all of them seem pretty dated.
Yes, they are (were) real retail and OEM products which you can still buy on eBay.

I don't know how to create a HTML link in this but here is the eBay item number


just do a search for 'Ageia PhysX PCI-E"

I believe ASUS and I guess DELL and possibly some other OEM's made PCI-E versions.


Diamond Member
Aug 9, 2004
For pure graphics rendering, I'd also recommend the 5850. Anything higher and you start wasting money as you're in the zone of diminishing returns. One thing it sounds like you should consider is how much you want PhysX, as reusing your 8800GTS seems to be out due to your motherboard. I haven't read any complete PhysX performance reviews, but it seems like the GTX4x0 cards still get owned when enabling PhysX: http://www.anandtech.com/show/2977/nvidia-s-geforce-gtx-480-and-gtx-470-6-months-late-was-it-worth-the-wait-/5 . Since you'll be on a single card, it's something to consider how much performance you want to sacrifice. The 5870 has the same price/performance as a GTX 470 (one typically gets ~$50 more performance from the card), but either compared to the 5850 is not a as good a deal.


Golden Member
Nov 4, 2009
If you must replace your card now, then yes, that 3 cards are probably your best bet. I will ditch the 5870 from the selection though as if you ain't going for multi-display as it may be hard to utilize the extra power from 5870 compare to 5850.

PhysX is not some visual effects on games that you won't see on ATI video card, but a nvidia video card can offload PhysX from CPU to GPU. That means, 470 performs better on games featuring PhysX. Compare to older Nvidia cards, the min fps is increased when the GPU is working hard, which, IMO, is the key to the fermi's series.

The only thing that is proprietary to Nvidia are CUDA and Nvidia 3D vision, not PhysX. That means, you won't miss much with ATI cards in general. However, if DirectX 11 and/or PhysX are your cup of tea, then 470 will be a better decision.

Having said that, if you can wait another 6 months, both companies will probably release a better card as DX11 is a bit too new for this generation as both companies are testing water with the current release. With the extra funding ATI have, their next release will probably be good. On the other hand, Fermi design is promising, but a bit sloppy on the manufacture side. Those little manufacture problems should be fixed resulting a better revision.
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