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-   -   4870x2 on it's way out looking for an upgrade (https://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/video-cards/60560-4870x2-its-way-out-looking-upgrade.html)

Brian April 6, 2013 07:45 AM

4870x2 on it's way out looking for an upgrade
I haven't been too enthusiastic to follow all the hardware for computers for a few years, given the underwhelming experience with this system. I also don't like the state gaming is in so I haven't been doing much of it. I don't want to pour a lot of money into a computer for gaming again. So I'm out of the loop when it comes to performance these days. My 4870x2 is on it's way out, I think the pads are cooked and I'm looking to upgrade to something better and more modern but relatively cheap. I'm looking for around $110-$130 for something. I spent $600 on the 4870x2 new and I have zero desire to pump that kind of money into a card again. I'd like to be able to play games that are coming out or came out last year at maximum settings. If that's not possible in that price range please let me know but that's what I'm looking at. If I have to spend more to achieve it I have to spend more.

If there's nothing out there much better for cheap I might look into trying to replace the thermal pads on the 4870x2 and use it a little longer. It still functions OK, just doesn't perform very well never has. The core temperatures are fine but I get heavy pixelation if I play a game so I assume there are heat issues elsewhere besides the cores/

Few things, I have had horrible experience with the ATI/AMD card so I would very much like to go with NVIDIA. However friends are telling me that for the same money you get twice the card with AMD and in a limited budget case that's a factor.

I've looked at the 560 and the 650 and got confused. The 560 is a better card than a newer 650? Also the 560 is way more expensive than the 650? To the point of the 650 not being worth the money, As well a buddy looked up some benchmarks for me and said that my 4870x2 is almost on par with the 650 which I find ludicrous given that it's 4 generations older.

So onto a bit about the 650s, 2 of these here:
EVGA GeForce GTX 650 1058MHZ 1024MB 5GHZ GDDR5 2xDVI Mini-HDMI PCI-E DX11 Video Card


Gigabyte GeForce GTX 650 Ti OC 1032MHZ 1GB 5.4GHZ GDDR5 2xDVI HDMI VGA PCI-E Video Card

Giving a quick look there's not much difference, but the 650 TI is supposed to be a ton better again I don't get it. Both of those I'm being told aren't worth the money to upgrade from what I have now and won't play games at maximum with very good performance. I figure I'm going to be bottlenecked anyway with my Q series chip so I'm not sure what to do here.

All of these dozens of different versions of the same card also I just don't have the patience to care about them enough anymore.

Any recommendations?

Coach April 6, 2013 07:54 AM


I haven't been too enthusiastic to follow all the hardware for computers for a few years, given the underwhelming experience with this system.
Your system looks pretty good considering its age aside from the 4870X2. IMHO right there your user experience did not have much of a chance. Without explaining the woah's of crossfire (dual gpu's) and very poor frame times to I suggest you look at a single card replacement which by the looks of it was the plan already.

Personally I would not get anything less than a 650Ti Boost 2GB card if you are running 1080P. On a lesser note I also suggest an SSD for your OS. It will make your dated but still capable system feel new again.

Brian April 6, 2013 09:02 AM

The 650 TI boost is something a few friend have recommended as well, it's a viable option...it'll be a while before I can pluck more than $200 out of where my money is going but it's viable. I'm looking between EVGA and Gigabyte noticing the warranties are both 3 year but EVGA is from time of purchase and Gigabyte disappointingly is from manufacture date. That $30 difference to EVGA might be worth it considering it's a guaranteed 3 years and not a chance at half that. Plus there's always the chance of it going on sale at NCIX or something.

As per your SSD point. I'm taking a stance against SSDs for a while. I'm not willing to spend a buck or more per GB on a drive, especially one so small I won't run my games off it. Maybe in another decade if they become the same price as regular drives, but not now.

One thing I wanted to make sure of, I'm using a Gigabyte EP45-ED3L board, PCI-E 2.0 but that card should work fine in a 2.0 slot right? As well, with having a 2.0 board that's going to bottleneck it anyway...so would performance between a 560 and a 650 be equaled out? Or would the 650 boost still be better?

GT7R April 6, 2013 09:06 AM


Originally Posted by Brian (Post 701026)

One thing I wanted to make sure of, I'm using a Gigabyte EP45-ED3L board, PCI-E 2.0 but that card should work fine in a 2.0 slot right?

Will work just fine.

Coach April 6, 2013 09:53 AM

My go to AIB partners are MSI, ASUS and to a lesser extent EVGA. IMHO if the need to RMA arises Canadians will be best served by ASUS or MSI seeing as both have RMA facilities in Canada. For EVGA you have to ship to California but they have great support.

Another video card to consider is the 7850. ATM they are bundled with some tripple A titles and that may or may not interest you. FWIW a 7850 is a bit better than a 650Ti Boost.

As far as the SSD idea I understand your concern. I must say though that once I started using SSDs there was NO going back! IMHO what is the point of investing in a many hundred or thousand dollar computer only to chop it off at the knees by limiting the speed of the random i/o performance of the storage device? No one is buying SSD for mass storage so for me the $/GB ratio cannot be compared to HDDs in the same way... That all said I am not here to convince you to get an SSD but I did want to share my point of view.

Bond007 April 6, 2013 10:11 AM

Most of your issues I am assuming are related to poor scaling with the 4870x2.

I would not recommend the 560 (older tech with higher power consumption), or the 650 (slow for gaming). If your budget can't be stretched I would go for an hd 7770 (probably slower than your current card in games that are well optimized for crossfire, but faster if poorly optimized). If you can spring the extra $, I would also recommend going for a gtx 650ti boost. Or, if the bundled games interest you and you will buy an amd (ati) card a hd 7850.

LarkStarr April 6, 2013 10:38 AM

I'm just curious what horrible experiences you're referring to? I have a feeling Phill is correct, but I'd like to know and be sure, just for posterity's sake.

However with what you're talking about, honestly the 7850 is going to be the best card for your price range. It's indeed slightly better then a 650ti boost, and the boost to me is on the very, very low end of high-settings 1080p gaming.

Brian April 6, 2013 01:32 PM

Gigabyte and EVGA...perhaps XFX (I don't know much about XFX customer support any input is appreciated) are the only companies I will deal with. I absolutely will not deal with ASUS, this is why:
Sorry for the long read.

After that debacle I bought a Gigabyte board and haven't looked back.
I have had fantastic luck with Gigabyte and EVGA products and the customer support for EVGA is unrivaled. In a situation like this, with the luck I have with computer parts, fast, efficient and reliable support is just as important as the product itself.

I don't want to go ATI...AMD for a multitude of reasons, my past experiences with them for one, and not in the least the terrible driver software and general lack of support. I've dealt with this card, more ATI cards in other systems in the house and getting them to perform is a chore especially compared to NVIDIA. Again a big part of that being drivers. Performance gain from NVIDIA driver updates as well seems much better.

But as I mentioned earlier, if you get a ton more performance out of an AMD card for the same price (even cheaper possibly)...I'm looking for performance at the end of the day. I didn't want to believe that the 7850 would out perform the 650TI boost but looking at a few benchmarks it's impossible to argue.

Problem with the 7850 now is again the different versions. Same card, big fluctuations in price for minimal pre-shipping overclocking never made sense to me. I assume the 2GB 7850 would be the better option, provided it's a single GPU card!
Also how is it with all speeds being slower than the 650TI that it still outperforms?

Coach April 6, 2013 02:21 PM


Also how is it with all speeds being slower than the 650TI that it still outperforms?
Two completely different architectures from two very different companies.

Brian April 9, 2013 09:56 AM

I'll admit the 7850 looks like a better buy than the 650TI Boost, however conflicting information. That aside, for the same price, cheaper in some instances, the GTX 660 is better than both. Throwing the 660 in the mix, the 7870 comes into play as well being not much more. But the 660 wins out in my book because of the price.

I'm pretty confident about a 660 being the best of the 3 initial options unless there is some important information I'm missing.

In particular, the superclocked edition is what has caught my eye:
EVGA SuperClocked 02G-P4-2662-KR GeForce GTX 660 2GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - Newegg.com

But there's also the non SC version:
EVGA 02G-P4-2660-KR GeForce GTX 660 2GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - Newegg.com

Any reason to avoid a superclocked version or would it be fine? SC is cheaper too which seems odd. My last concern is running the new card in a board with PCI-E 2.0 and a Q series quad core, at what point does performance increase between all these new cards become redundant based on the restrictions of my setup? At what point are you wasting money from one card to another based on that?

I should also note that my 4870x2 is the older version of it, with clocks of 750/900, I know there's a quicker version out since so that might give some perspective as to how much of an upgrade these new choices really are.

Thanks for all your replies guys.

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