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Marvolo Ferrentino

Upgrading a card

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I have been thinking of upgrading a card.  I have an NVIDIA GeForce GT430   I'm looking for something that would be better, but all these model numbers confuse the hell out of me.  My basic PC information is here...

CyberpowerPC Gamer Xtreme GXi210 Desktop PC with Intel Core i5-2400 Processor

3.10 GHZ

8 GB RAM 64 Bit Operating System

Would love if anyone could give me some ideas.  I try going to newegg.com to look at things, I'm not willing to shell out for something that is like over 200 bucks.  But something where I can run and fight on Second Life even in high settings would be nice.

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Will $209 be ok?

Nvidia 560GTX superclocked: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814125390

ATI 6870: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102955

Both of them are pretty good cards that, bare Ambient Occlusion and maybe heavy shadows, will serve you well.

And if you like the Batman game I would go for the Nvidia but I think both cards are fairly close in performance. xD

$20 over: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814125401

Basically anything GTX 560 and GTX560 Ti will be close to the range you want.The TI version is a better, revised spec. Things you should watch out for are the gpu speed. If price is close go for the faster one always unless it is like a 10-20MHz jump, then it is not worth to pay more money for it. Also watch the bus. A 256bit bus will always be better than 128bit. The memory type on the card also makes a difference, you should always look for GDDR5.

Maybe someone else can elaborate on the AMD/ATI camp, I am not familiar with the latest but they should be very close in performance.

Check reviews before deciding though! I haven't bought anything from those companies in a while but it is hard to go bad since they all get their components from the same suppliers most of the time.

 

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The basics regarding the Nvidia naming convention is as follows. The number series (200, 300,400,500) is the generation of the card, with the newest being the 500 series. Within each series, the last 2 digits denote the relative performance of the card within that series. So, a 570 is a more powerful, higher model than a 560. So, not all 500 series cards are better than 400 series cards, or even 300 or 200 series cards. For example, I have a GTX 285 which was near top of the Nvidia line a few years ago. According to the performance rankings I have seen, it performs about as well as new GTX 560. However, it still beats the crap out of a GT 520, which is a current generation, low-end card.

 

By the way, about 5 years ago, Nvidea changed their numbering system, going from 4-digit numbers to 3-digit numbers; from 9800 to 100. So a FX 5800 (4-digit number) is a very old model card, while a GT 545 (3-digit number) is a current generation model.

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