What Card to Get? (April 2012)

| posted 2 years 10 months ago

What Card to Get? (April 2012)

UPDATE: Drove myself crazy. Going to return to subject after some more research and hopefully after new tech has come out and prices have gone down.




I don't have any clue what I'm looking for, but I want the best I can get.

I'm thinking of getting this:

AMD Radeon HD 6870 - 1GB - CrossFire Mode (Dual Cards)

But if there's something better around the same price please let me know.


I'm just looking for a card that will support my games for  years to come. I'd like to actually play my games on max graphics WHILE I LIVE STREAM but I don't know how much a gpu actually effects streaming.


I'm pretty clueless and my brain has turned to mush. I'm using ibuypower.com to make my rig as I am not savvy enough to build my own, and I previously used Dell, so this is the best you can hope to get from me.

Any other questions please ask, and I will try to answer them to the best of my ability.


Thank you.

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posted 2 years 10 months ago

1440x900 I guess, That's my native resolutions on my current rig.

posted 2 years 10 months ago

Ok... I'm not in a rush so I'm also going to look into making my own rig.

I've had my computer for 5 years now and it still keeps up, but I'd like to stop playing on redused graphics. No rush to upgrade, but I really really want to xD

If I wanted to run at a much higher res, and also run more than 1 game at a time (I gotta idle for dem hats  yo) Would your reccomendation change?

What should I look for in GPU's?

posted 2 years 10 months ago

if you've had your PC for 5 years it may not just be your GPU, what CPU, how much and what type of rame do you have?

posted 2 years 10 months ago

Oh I know that it's not my GPU, But i'm currently using a Dell Inspiron 531. I would like to just start fresh with a new computer that will last me another 5+ years instead of upgrading mine.

I've got a slow Dual core, only 4GB of ram on a 32bit rig, integrated sound, one busted optical drive, and an NVIDIA GeForce 8600GT

A new processor would do wonders, but even Diablo3 was warning me that my GPU wasn't up to snuff T~T


posted 2 years 10 months ago

ehh what kind of dual core, a dual core could mean a pentium D or  a sandybridge G820T which there is a major performance differences



and the pentium d is slower than the e2200 per clock

and there is a major difference in ddr and ddr3 lower voltage and 4x the speed


your computer is only as fast as its weakest component so it won't matter if you have 2x 6870s a cpu and ram will still hold it back because the cpu and ram have to send that information to the GPP

DDR3 is dirt cheap these days and can get a 4GB dual channel kit under $18 on newegg, a sandybridge z68 motherboard will go for $80 and it depends on what you want on the CPU, my i3 2100 runs faster than my 955BE quadcore

32bit will limit the amount of ram you have and I believe it also has lower bandwidth than 64bit

download this program and hit validate, copy and paste the website link it brings up


this will give us specific information about the parts in your computer to help us better help you

posted 2 years 10 months ago

my cpu is slow, it's probably my slowest component, but here's my info i fyou want:


AMD Athlon 64 X2 4400+Windows 7 32-bit SP1 (Build 7601)CPU Arch : 1 CPU - 2 Cores - 2 ThreadsCPU PSN : AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 4400+CPU EXT : MMX(+), 3DNow!(+), SSE (1, 2, 3), x86-64, AMD-VCPUID : F.B.1 / Extended : F.6BCPU Cache : L1 : 2 x 64 / 2 x 64 KB - L2 : 2 x 512 KBCore : Brisbane (65 nm) / Stepping : BH-G1Freq : 2310.63 MHz (200.92 * 11.5)MB Brand : DellMB Model : 0RY206NB : NVIDIA MCP61 rev A3SB : NVIDIA MCP61 rev A2GPU Type : NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GTGPU Clocks : Core 540 MHz / RAM 700 MHzDirectX Version : 11.0RAM : 4096 MB DDR2 Dual ChannelRAM Speed : 330.1 MHz (Unknown) @ 5-5-5-15Slot 1 : 1024MB (6400)Slot 1 Manufacturer : Wintec IndustriesSlot 2 : 1024MB (6400)Slot 2 Manufacturer : Wintec IndustriesSlot 3 : 1024MB (5300)Slot 3 Manufacturer : SamsungSlot 4 : 1024MB (5300)Slot 4 Manufacturer : Samsung  Man that didnt keep any formatting. But yes, I would need to replace a lot of stuff to get my rig where I want it to be. I'd rather start fresh and use this for other things or sell it to family.
posted 2 years 10 months ago

Lol, that reminds me of the first build I put together. It was pretty similar.

But anyway, if you want to let us know what kind of budget you have, we can put something together for you just to give you an idea of what you can get. I know tacticoolfool recommended waiting until hard drive prices drop back to normal, but I wouldn't recommend that unless you want to wait at least another year.

The Radeon HD 6870 is a nice card and would work fine with your resolution. For any resolution that is 1920x1080 or higher I would recommend a card with at least 2GB of VRAM though. I'm not sure if SLI would be overkill, but you would get more fps than you would if you had a higher resolution.

It looks like they do make a 2GB version of the 6870, but I would recommend a Radeon HD 7850 if you can afford it:


posted 2 years 10 months ago

The 7850doesn't seem too steep. Here's what I've gathered that I want so far:

CPU:Intel® Core™ i7 3820 - $300RAM:CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M2A1600C10 - $119


CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9 - $96

HDD/SSD:Thinking maybe a 60GB SSD for my OS and other stuff I might need, and then a 500GB/1TB additional drive, or just a 1TB HDD. I don't care about brands too much, just as long as the speed is fast. - $200?

Sound Card:Creative Labs Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium- $100

Optical Drive:Don't care, Dvd/cd/bluray combo drive - $60

GPU:NO IDEA! I want to be able to play high res borderless window'ed games while streaming and maybe playing a second game in the background... 

The7850 looks nice and runs $240


Mother Board:Same as above. No idea about mother boards. I want USB 3.0 and whatever can hold the rest.

Case:Whatever can fit it all

Power:Don't care, it'll probably have to be 700/850W though - $100

So that leaves about $700 for the GPU, Mobo, and case. It's not a strict budget, but I'd like to not spend over 2000 and the lower the better.

So, should I go through all this trouble or just buy an ibuypower PC with all of that and an AMD 6870 Crossfired for $1549?

posted 2 years 10 months ago

BAH SCREW IT! I'll come back in a few months and try again. Hard drives will have hopefully dropped and you have all given me a lot of helpful tips and insight.


I'm totally coming back here, I'll try to figure out some more stuff myself and do some research on my own.

posted 2 years 10 months ago

This is what I would get for around $1600. It beats the crap out of that ibuypower rig:

Motherboard: ASUS P8Z77-V Pro


CPU: Intel i5 2500K


RAM: 8GB Mushkin dual channel @1600mhz


GPU: XFX Radeon HD 7970


SSD: 90GB Kingston HyperX


HDD: Two Seagate Barracuda 1TB drives (put them in RAID 0 to increase data transfer speeds)


PSU: Corsair TX850M (850 watt modular, 80+ bronze)


ODD: LG DVD burner


CPU cooler: Noctua NH-D14


Case: NZXT Phantom



The only thing is that I would wait until tomorrow to get a CPU because Ivy Bridge CPUs should be coming out, and they'll be significantly faster than the i5 2500k that I listed, and they should be around the same price. So I would wait and see if you could get the updated i5 that will be coming out. Also, the case I listed comes in a bunch of different color schemes if you don't like the colors. You could also just get a completely different case than the one I listed if you don't like it.

Also, if you need to shave off a few dollars from the total price, you could always just get rid of one of the hard drives and you would save about $100.

This build doesn't take the price of Windows into account either, so you'd have to buy a copy of Windows 7 too.

posted 2 years 10 months ago

I agree about the 7850. It's only a little more than the 6870 and it is a little faster. The prices just came down recently too which is nice. Having said all that... let me see what I can do for you:

  • CPU:Intel® Core™ i7 3820 $300
  • ASUS Sabertooth X79: $320
  • OR, if you want more bells and whistles: ASUS SABERTOOTH Z77 $239
  • GPU: ASUS HD7870-DC2-2GD5 (or similar): $359
  • RAM: CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB $96
  • Case: Fractal Design Define R3 $109
  • Thermaltake Black Widow 850 W PSU: $129
  • SSD: Kingston Hyper X 3k 120 GB: $120
  • Sound Blaster x-fi: $100
  • monitor: ANYTHING better than what you have! you need more resolution!

I know the OCZ Vertex 4 has more IOPS but the Kingston is about $50 less and it's really durable. I put the two drives head to head and the Kingston has been winning in "real world tests" like opening Windows and loading games. 

With this build you will get a LOT of speed and the 7870 is amazing for the price. I would REALLY recommend that you get a new monitor. Perhaps even one of these:http://teksyndicate.com/videos/achieva-shimian-27-2560x1440-monitor-overview

Hope this helps... Also, a note to everyone: use the bullet list (it's on the top of the text area). It makes it easier when listing specs and such.  

posted 2 years 10 months ago

That won't work Logan. You can't put a 2011 CPU into an 1155 socket.

posted 2 years 10 months ago

Good... lord... my brain was thinking I was putting X79 boards on the list... I'm working too much..

I fixed the list.


posted 2 years 10 months ago

Lol, it's cool. Shit happens.

posted 2 years 10 months ago

If you want a new monitor, I would personally go with any one of these:


Or this one:



All of those ASUS monitors probably have a matte screen which means you get less glare, but colors won't pop as nicely as they would on a glossy screen. The HP has a glossy screen, so the colors will be really nice and vibrant, but it will glare easily.

I would personally go with the HP, but I like glossy screens, and I know a lot of people don't.

posted 2 years 10 months ago

Don't worry, I'm not discouraged, it just suits me better to wait, I've just been wanting a better rig since this one got a year old and now that I'm able to aford one I just REALLY wanted it (almost enough to buy another dell, which isn't bad, but ya know...)


I have this place bookmarked, expect me back, those monthly build guides are nice, too bad they become useless so quick xD

posted 2 years 10 months ago

I wouldn't say they become useless that quickly. There are just a lot of new parts coming out on the market right now. After Ivy Bridge and all the new graphics cards come out we probably won't see anything new for about 6 months to a year.

posted 2 years 10 months ago

It looks like Ivy Bridge is making its debut today. Once they actually hit store shelves, I would replace that i5 2500K I posted with an i5 3570K.


posted 2 years 10 months ago

I think you are better to get a second hand i5 2500k (theres a few popping up right now and at very good prices) rather than spend allot more for a similar performaing CPU, then put it towards the GPU.