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Card advice?

CrackDown

Established Member
I've just recently upgraded my pc to an i7 3770, 16gb DDR3 and a 120gb SSD. It runs like s___ off a shovel, the only problem is I have a Geforce 8400gs in it :rolleyes:. It feels like I've got an Astin Martin with Fiesta tires.

Now, I used to be a heavy gamer, but don't really play them anymore BUT I wouldn't mind having a go and testing out the new beast. I've been pricing up cards and would love to buy a Radeon 7850, but I'll need a new PSU too because I don't have a 6pin on mine... so you're looking at £200. I know it'll be future proofing my machine, but I'm really struggling to justify the price. My monitor is an old 22" LCD and I don't think it goes any higher that 1600x1200... so I'm wondering if that card might be overkill. I'd love to give the new Tomb Raider or Bioshock a whirl in all their glory, and I do some video editing from time to time so hopefully a new card would help with that.

I guess I'm just interested in opinions: Should I blow £200 on a new card or get a lower budget one and not p__s my girlfriend off too much ;)

Cheers
 

Ellis

Established Member
Honestly, if you get something like a GTX 460 or 560 Ti from the classifieds for about £40-60 then you will still be able to play all the latest games and give them a taster, just not with everything turned up to 11. Your 22" LCD probably has a resolution of 1680x1050, at which the 7850 will plough through anything, but it's a lot more to spend.

If your current PSU doesn't have a 6-pin connector then you will, like you say, be needing a new one, no matter what graphics card you buy (out of anything that can actually play games). But since it sounds like you've not been into gaming for a while, you may be best starting off with a card that doesn't cost you much to buy, and won't lose its value quickly (i.e. second hand, something that's been out a while). That way, if you feel like upgrading to something capable of playing the latest games in all their glory, you can sell the card for the price you bought it, only losing postage costs.

Also, a quality power supply may be more efficient than the one you have now. Tell the girlfriend that you'll be saving money on power bills in the long run :D
 

Ellis

Established Member
7850 1GB, less than £130, use a 99p 6pin adaptor off ebay
Any PSU that is capable enough to run a 7850 safely should come with a 6-pin cable, so I wouldn't recommend using an adapter unless it really is a solid and capable PSU that happens not to have any 6-pin connectors.
 

CrackDown

Established Member
Thanks guys,

My PSU is pretty old, it only has 1 sata power connector and 3 molex on it, and they're taken up with 3 hard disks and 1 dvd drive. I like the 'new PSU will lower energy bills' excuse though :) Is it true? I wonder if mine is guzzling juice like a 4x4 car. I'm hoping to buy another SSD in the future too, so will probably be investing in a new PSU anyway. I've been looking at the Corsair CX600w, looks pretty good.

Maybe going for a second hand card is my best bet. I do some HD video editing too, so want something that will help with that, but I guess anything is better than an 8400GS :blush:
 

Ellis

Established Member
Thanks guys,

My PSU is pretty old, it only has 1 sata power connector and 3 molex on it, and they're taken up with 3 hard disks and 1 dvd drive. I like the 'new PSU will lower energy bills' excuse though :) Is it true? I wonder if mine is guzzling juice like a 4x4 car. I'm hoping to buy another SSD in the future too, so will probably be investing in a new PSU anyway. I've been looking at the Corsair CX600w, looks pretty good.

Maybe going for a second hand card is my best bet. I do some HD video editing too, so want something that will help with that, but I guess anything is better than an 8400GS :blush:
Well, maybe. It would depend on the wattage of the PSUs, the efficiency of the PSUs, and the amount of energy your PC is actually drawing. But you could use it as an excuse anyway :p

Efficiency depends on load, as well. PSUs become more efficient as they get towards their maximum load, so if you have a PC that only uses 400W and use an 850W PSU, then even if it claims to be very efficient, it probably won't be when it's at less than 50% load.

Not sure on the video editing front, just make sure that whatever you're using supports GPU acceleration or whatever they want to call it - that is, if you have a super powerful GPU but the program you're using just makes use of the CPU, then you won't see any difference :p
 

CrackDown

Established Member
Thanks. I've ended up going for a 7750 from Scan. Only 70 quid and doesn't require external power so saved some cash on a PSU :)

Thanks again.
 

CrackDown

Established Member
Actually, I spotted I could get a MSI HD 7770 for £8 more than the 7750, so changed my order and threw in a £21 PSU too ;)

That's DEFINITELY my final choice (oooo, look, the 7850 is only £40 more than what I paid for... etc etc)
 

Ellis

Established Member
Thanks cokker, I changed my PSU to that one.

But I also cancelled my gpu and went with this one: Sapphire HD 7850 OC Edition 2GB Dual DVI HDMI.. | Ebuyer.com

The savings wasn't worth the amount of research and effort I put into working out what card to buy, so the second I upgraded my PSU I figured what the hell :D

Cheers all.
Nice one, it's supposed to be a really good card. And as for the PSU, again I've not tried the exact one but it should be good, and my XFX PSU hasn't given me any issues at all.
 

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