Best graphics card?

Mar 13, 2011
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What is the best graphics card in the various price ranges: $100-150, $200-$250, $300, $300+?

I've currently got a gaming PC that I built a while back. It's i5 2500K and an AMD 6900 build. I'm unable to run certain games on max (e.g. Sleeping Dogs) on a 1440 x 900 screen (not exactly 1080p, so it should be too demanding), which is quite disappointing.

Is the graphics card the bottleneck in this build, and not the CPU?

I'm willing to spend money now (Don't mind getting nVidia with its price premium).

What are the available graphics card in the various price ranges and which one has the greatest value for money?

Thanks in advance.
 

lehtv

Elite Member
Dec 8, 2010
11,900
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raghu are you really suggesting a $300 GPU for 1440x900?

The 6900 series should be plenty for that resolution. Yes, some games might struggle a little maxed out, but I can't see it being worth upgrading the graphics over the monitor. Buying a 1080p monitor for $150 and reducing image quality a little would have a much bigger impact on the gaming experience than buying a new graphics card just to be able to max out 1440x900. If needed, the OP can then think about upgrading the graphics card.
 
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Mar 13, 2011
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your 2500k cpu is a powerhouse. ideally spend 300 - 350 and get a new GPU.

USD 300 - 350

AMD
http://www.amazon.com/XFX-RADEON-100.../dp/B00FSC5N66

Nvidia
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814127741

Perfect. I'll have a look, thanks.

raghu are you really suggesting a $300 GPU for 1440x900?

The 6900 series should be plenty for that resolution. Yes, some games might struggle a little maxed out, but I can't see it being worth upgrading the graphics over the monitor. Buying a 1080p monitor for $150 and reducing image quality a little would have a much bigger impact on the gaming experience than buying a new graphics card just to be able to max out 1440x900. If needed, the OP can then think about upgrading the graphics card.

Thanks for the consideration. I actually have a 1080p monitor that I've tilted and made a vertical monitor, and the 1440 x 900 is from a long time ago (old primary screen for my MacBook Air) so I might be repurposing that.

My point was that my 6900 card was shockingly bad in running some games at max graphics, as 1440 x 900 is hardly 1080p, hence should be less demanding.

Money isn't too much of a consideration here in terms of the graphics card that I want to buy. Obviously I don't have the means to pay $1000 for the newest card which will eventually decrease downwards in terms of price, but I'd like to have the optimal gaming experience.
 

angevil

Member
Sep 15, 2012
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I happily play games at 2560 x 1440 on an oced gtx 750 ti i just got. I run almost 3 times more pixels than 1440x900 on a gpu in the same ballpark in performance as a 6970.
 
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raghu78

Diamond Member
Aug 23, 2012
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I happily play games at 2560 x 1440 on a gtx 750 ti i just got. I run almost 3 times more pixels on a gpu in the same ballpark in performance as your 6970.

depends on what games you are playing and at what settings. If you want to max BF4 at that resolution and hold 60 fps in MP you need a GTX 780 Ti / R9 290X overclocked. Crysis 3 is even more demanding

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2014...ti_gaming_3g_video_card_review/4#.U0kpBlWSyE4

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2014...ti_gaming_3g_video_card_review/7#.U0kpVFWSyE4
 
Mar 13, 2011
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depends on what games you are playing and at what settings. If you want to max BF4 at that resolution and hold 60 fps in MP you need a GTX 780 Ti / R9 290X overclocked. Crysis 3 is even more demanding

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2014...ti_gaming_3g_video_card_review/4#.U0kpBlWSyE4

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2014...ti_gaming_3g_video_card_review/7#.U0kpVFWSyE4

Oh wow. It looks incredible.

The price is... uh, pretty high though. Heh. Is the performance gap between the 750 TI and 780 TI massive?

Also back to the 780 TI... It says it's 600W. Does that mean that I need a 600W+ PSU (750, ...) in order to run the graphics card? (Sorry I seem to have forgot everything that I learnt when building my gaming PC 3 1/2 years ago).
 
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raghu78

Diamond Member
Aug 23, 2012
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Oh wow. It looks incredible.

The price is... uh, pretty high though. Heh. Is the performance gap between the 750 TI and 780 TI massive?

Also back to the 780 TI... It says it's 600W. Does that mean that I need a 600W+ PSU (750, ...) in order to run the graphics card? (Sorry I seem to have forgot everything that I learnt when building my gaming PC 3 1/2 years ago).

GTX 780 Ti and R9 290X are ideal for 1440p / 1600p monitors. For 1080p and lower a R9 28X / GTX 770 is more than enough. Any high quality 600w PSU with 45A (or above) on +12v rail can run a GTX 780 Ti. But for your resolution its overkill and not required.

Get a R9 280X and overclock it 1200 Mhz. it will rip through the latest games at 1080p. the 3GB VRAM is more futureproof and will make sure you don't run out of VRAM in the latest games.

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2013/12/02/sapphire_toxic_r9_280x_video_card_review/8#.U0kzeVWSyE4
 
Mar 13, 2011
134
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GTX 780 Ti and R9 290X are ideal for 1440p / 1600p monitors. For 1080p and lower a R9 28X / GTX 770 is more than enough. Any high quality 600w PSU with 45A (or above) on +12v rail can run a GTX 780 Ti. But for your resolution its overkill and not required.

Get a R9 280X and overclock it 1200 Mhz. it will rip through the latest games at 1080p. the 3GB VRAM is more futureproof and will make sure you don't run out of VRAM in the latest games.

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2013/12/02/sapphire_toxic_r9_280x_video_card_review/8#.U0kzeVWSyE4

That's fantastic, thanks for the clear explanation.

I'm not ready to upgrade yet at the moment but it's great to see what's out there.
 

Techhog

Platinum Member
Sep 11, 2013
2,834
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Oh wow. It looks incredible.

The price is... uh, pretty high though. Heh. Is the performance gap between the 750 TI and 780 TI massive?

Also back to the 780 TI... It says it's 600W. Does that mean that I need a 600W+ PSU (750, ...) in order to run the graphics card? (Sorry I seem to have forgot everything that I learnt when building my gaming PC 3 1/2 years ago).

600W is the minimum PSU you need for the whole system to comfortably use it, though technically a highly efficient PSU at a lower wattage would work.

It is a massive gap (more than 2.5x), but it's not a better value. At your resolution, it's too much anyway. I'd say to keep what you have and upgrade later when prices go down a bit. Upgrade options are R9 280, R9 280X, GTX 760, and GTX 770.
 

toyota

Lifer
Apr 15, 2001
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depends on what games you are playing and at what settings. If you want to max BF4 at that resolution and hold 60 fps in MP you need a GTX 780 Ti / R9 290X overclocked. Crysis 3 is even more demanding

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2014...ti_gaming_3g_video_card_review/4#.U0kpBlWSyE4

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2014...ti_gaming_3g_video_card_review/7#.U0kpVFWSyE4
lol he would be very cpu limited at 1440x900 in BF 4 multi and especially Crysis 3. he would see little to no difference from a 760 to a 780 in many parts of those games at that resolution with his cpu. unless his goal is to force insane levels of AA then a 760 makes way more sense at that dinky resolution.

I spent hours testing Crysis 3 and my 2500k at stock had minimums in the upper 30s and the same spots with an oced 4770k are right a 60 fps.

even with my oced 4770k, if I lower the res to 1440x900 my 780 utilization is laughably low in nearly all games.
 
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