The video card decisions to make when doing multiple comps


Oct 30, 2000
Like many, I'm not made of money but I do have enough to afford what I want usually. I am also still frugal with my spending despite that and like going after the best bang for my buck. Every so often I splurge and I am about to do that again.

Here's what I have:

Main comp:
q9450 @3.8Ghz
4GB of GSkill DDR2 I think running close to 1200ish (forgot where the divider was at)
Asus x48 rampage board
4850's in CF with Acceleros put on them at 700/1100 each card.
Rocketfish (lian li p7 rebadge) case.

+ other junk that doesn't matter.

Second comp.
Aspire Qpack case (matx case)
eVGA nf44 board (one with the broke voltage adjustment to the CPU)
opteron 165 running at 3.1Ghz with the wire pin trick to get an extra bit of voltage.
4GB of GSkill ZX DDR memory running at 257 fsb
8800 GTX BFG OC running at 660/1080.

Now, my dilemma is thus. I'm getting a 4870x2 for my main rig. That is my goal. The problem is what to do with the current equipment and my second rig.

The 4850's won't fit the smaller case my second rig is in with the accelero's on them and I think the heat is already finely balanced enough as is. Throwing those in there to add heat INTO the case would be bad. At least the 8800 GTX shoves most of the heat it makes out.

I could go with another 8800 GTX and SLI with what I currently have as the eVGA nf44 is an SLI board. However, I read about some problems with this board doing that and using it at the high FSB I currently have. Basically it took TONS of tinkering to get what my second comp at the current maxed out state it is in.

I could sell off all the extra cards and grab a 4870 with a dual slot cooler for the 2nd comp, or even go a 4870x2, but man the money involved with getting 2 of those even if I sell off what I have is still a ton. If I sell what I am currently have I am being optimistic and thinking I can get $215 for the 4850's with the cooler's on them and $175 for the OC'd GTX (basically faster than an ultra). That's $605 + shipping costs out of my pocket more than likely. Then, I'm buying a $500 4870x2 and that leaves $100 ish + what I'm willing to throw in to get a card for the second comp. Another $130 and I can get a 4870 which I'm thinking is the right course.

Of course I keep the 8800 gtx for even longer I guess but I would still have to throw in about $70 after selling the 4850's for the 4870x2 so either way I'm GOING to be spending money.

The question is, best bang for the buck. Knowing I'm going to be spending $70 at the least is it better to spend $70 and have a 4870x2 and 8800GTX or a $130 and have a 4870x2 and 4870 which later I could use all three together?

Any suggestions from the peanut gallery of what people would do in my situation?


Diamond Member
Dec 19, 2004
Do you need to change the 2nd rig?, what res is its monitor? 88GTX on a opty?, you must already be CPU limited!


Golden Member
Feb 23, 2008
Well, lets see you could spend $70 now and get the 4870x2. Now, if you still wanted to upgrade the 8800GTX you could always sell that later and get another HD4870 by spending maybe $50 dollars. Or you could just get whatever card is out at that time. Besides, if I were in that position I would jsut sell the two 4850's and get the 4870X2. Leave the secondary with the 8800GTX.


Platinum Member
May 23, 2008
Originally posted by: SolMiester
Do you need to change the 2nd rig?, what res is its monitor? 88GTX on a opty?, you must already be CPU limited!

if he is anything like me, he is using a 21 inch trinitron CRT which can do 2048x1536, or a 30 inch LCD of some sort. i have a 2900PRO 1GB right now powering my trinitron and im planning on replacing it with a 30 inch Doublesight monitor later this year. i have an athlon 64 4000+ on the eVga NF47 board right now myself


Oct 30, 2000
no CRT, just a big LCD. Few of them in fact. So I am running at a high enough resolution that I'm not CPU bound, which is just a stupid argument anyhow. Yah, I would get more frame rates for sure with a better CPU in my second rig, but I would also get better frame rates with a better video card at the resolution I use and the levels of AA I like. So the point is moot.

Since I am running at 19x12 or higher, the 8800 gtx can chug on a few games with my setup. However, I personally don't use it as much for gaming, but it's a nice thing to have, especially when I do use it because my main rig is down for whatever reason (which happens and really sucks when they are both down at the same time). It's also nice to have at lan parties where my main comp in that big rocketfish case is a pain to lug around. In which case the second comp in the portable case with enough power to play any game I want at a lanparty is very nice to have.

I can't stick a 4850 in the 2nd comp due to heat. The 4850 dumps the heat inside the case, and since it's a small form factor comp, additional heat inside is very bad. I am eventually going to get rid of the 8800 GTX out of that comp, the question is now or later. Also, which will it cost me more or be more cost effective in the long run? Selling the 8800 GTX while it's still retaining some value at $150+ or later when that value drops? sure the 4870 and 4870x2 are going to drop as well, but what would be the biggest difference? Which situation do I lose more money overall in? That's just yet another consideration I'm taking into account.

It's not quite a unique problem as I'm not the only one on these forums with 2 decent but still dissimilar comps who is looking to do the video card upgrade this time around.