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If you had $350 to spend on a video card...what would you get?

Wekiva

Senior member
Feb 13, 2001
349
0
76
Due to a credit card claim on a card that failed I can spend $350 on a video card. If I spend less I just get reimbursed less...so I'm looking to spend at least $350. Now if there's a great card out there for a bit more then I'd pony up some extra $$ but would prefer to be near $350 if possible.

I'm interested in gaming and some video and photo work. I'm by no means a professional though. Gaming would be my primary interest in what the card needs to do well.

I do have my computer stuck in a somewhat enclosed area so I'm looking for things that run on the cool side if possible.

Thanks for any advice.
 

Kenmitch

Diamond Member
Oct 10, 1999
8,504
2,245
136
Would be helpful if you post your system specs, monitor resolution, and the games you wanna play.
 

Wekiva

Senior member
Feb 13, 2001
349
0
76
Would be helpful if you post your system specs, monitor resolution, and the games you wanna play.
You know...I actually meant to do that and it slipped my mind.

My system is i7 9200 @ 2.67 GHz
I'm running Windows 7 with 6 GB of ram
I'm not one to overclock parts to my system
I've got dual monitors both running at 1280 x 1024
Games I currently enjoy are Modern Warfare 2, BF2 and I'm looking forward to Crysis 2.
 

RussianSensation

Elite Member
Sep 5, 2003
19,458
761
126
Well at 1280x1024, any modern videocard beyond GTX460 768mb is overkill.

However, you are generally looking at GTX470/5870 or GTX480.

Right now Newegg has GTX480 for $390. That's your fastest single-gpu card at the moment. It will run the hottest and loudest.

The other 2 obvious options are the 5870 at $350 and a $350 GTX470 with aftermarket cooler overclocked to 700mhz = 5870 speed.

If you don't intend to wait 2 months for HD6000 series at $350 (highly recommended if you are spending that much), then it's a choice between the fastest card and 2 that are about 20% slower but run quieter and consume less power.
 

toyota

Lifer
Apr 15, 2001
12,957
1
0
buying a $350 video card for 1280x1024 would be stupid. buy a monitor if possible.
 

ZimZum

Golden Member
Aug 2, 2001
1,281
0
76
If you have to buy right now, 5870. But I would hold of until the 6xxx series if I could. Or go ahead and buy a 5870 now and Ebay it. Then get something more suitable for your resolution (5770,460) and pocket the difference. Because as Toyota says all these cards are overkill for your situation.
 

dust

Golden Member
Oct 13, 2008
1,339
1
71
Just buy whatever matches the amount and E-Bay it like others said, get yourself a low range card for a couple of months until the 6xxx series arrives, it should bring further down the current card rates.

If you do want to go Fermi, I'd get a 480, the 470 is on offers pretty much nowadays, you might have problems getting a good price on re-sale. You'd probably be safer with a 5870, but you do need to move fast.
 

Grooveriding

Diamond Member
Dec 25, 2008
9,082
1,224
126
Before you spend $350 on a video card get a bigger monitor. For your resolution you might as well just use an 8800GT.

1920x1200 is my recommendation for some staying power. Then get the $350 video card.
 

Wekiva

Senior member
Feb 13, 2001
349
0
76
buying a $350 video card for 1280x1024 would be stupid. buy a monitor if possible.
I understand your point. It's just that I've got to spend the $$ fairly soon and it has to be all on one video card. There is a decent chance I'll be getting a larger monitor at some point in the future so the resolution will most likely go up.

I appreciate all of your input.
 

iGas

Diamond Member
Feb 7, 2009
6,240
1
0
buying a $350 video card for 1280x1024 would be stupid. buy a monitor if possible.
I would get a good monitor before I get a video card.

For $350 you can get a good monitor that will last at least 5 years or longer, as video standard doesn't change as rapid as graphics card.

PS. I just picked up a 28" 1920x1200 monitor and it is an amazing upgrade from my old 19" 1280x1024 monitor. And, I'm waiting for Civ 5 to come out in a week to see the exact hardware requirement for it on high~every high setting before I buy a GTX 460 or a 470.
 
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3DVagabond

Lifer
Aug 10, 2009
11,951
201
106
I would get a good monitor before I get a video card.

For $350 you can get a good monitor that will last at least 5 years or longer, as video standard doesn't change as rapid as graphics card.

PS. I just picked up a 28" 1920x1200 monitor and it is an amazing upgrade from my old 19" 1280x1024 monitor. And, I'm waiting for Civ 5 to come out in a week to see the exact hardware requirement for it on high~every high setting before I buy a GTX 460 or a 470.

He has to get a video card. He has insurance money to spend. The money is for a video card, not a monitor. He knows he needs a new monitor. In the meantime he has $350 supplied by his credit card ins/warr to spend on a shiny new video card.
 

Kenmitch

Diamond Member
Oct 10, 1999
8,504
2,245
136
Gigabyte superoverclock with that badass cool and quiet cooler , if you want to spend the whole $350. Then you can get the rebate back too.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814125338

Quote from review..
"Please do give your SOC card a fixed fan RPM of say 70%, which still isn't too noisy."

http://www.guru3d.com/article/gigabyte-geforce-gtx-470-soc-review/18
I'll agree with happy on this one :)

With the future release from AMD coming up I don't think it would be worth it to kick in any cash towards a better one....Most likely prices will start dropping if the performance rumors are true on AMD's upcoming 6xxx series.
 

bryanW1995

Lifer
May 22, 2007
11,143
32
91
buy the cheapest gtx 480 you can get, then ebay it NIB. use the proceeds to upgrade monitor and get a midrange video card.
 

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