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Thread: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

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    Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    I'm currently putting together a system from an assemblage of older parts and cast-offs:

    Athlon 64 X2 3800+ AM-2
    Asus M2NPV-VM motherboard
    2Gb DDR2 667
    etc

    Motherboard has integrated VGA for the immediate short-term, but what would people recommend as a PCI-E graphics upgrade to allow playable frame rates for 2-3 year old games (HL2, CoD2 and similar) at 1920x1200 resolution?

    I realize I could chuck a 9800GTX or 3870 X2 in there and it would chomp its way through most things but which card would give the best bang per buck and wouldn't suffer from excessive CPU limiting?

    Budget would be in the £80 - £100 bracket, I guess

    Thanks in advance
    Last edited by phoenix198; 20-04-2008 at 09:02 AM. Reason: Typos :-)
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    SiM
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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    ATI 3870 or Nvidia 9600GT

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    Just to back up SiM suggestion, I also think the 8800GS 384Mb is worth a look too.

    ATI 3870 512Mb = £104 Sapphire HD 3870 XT 512MB GDDR4 Dual DVI TV Out PCI-E Graphics Card - Ebuyer
    nVidia 9600GT 512Mb = £107 Inno3D 9600GT 512MB DDR3 Dual DVI TV Out PCI-E Graphics Card - Ebuyer
    nVidia 8800GS 384Mb = £61 XFX GeForce 8800 GS Graphics Card 384MB PCI-E Dual DVI PV-T88S-FDF4 - Saverstore.com

    Unfortunately looks like they're out of stock of the 8800GS now, but just for general gaming it would be absolutely fine if you can get it for £65ish and want to save a few £££

    In terms of performance it's something like this

    3870 and 9600GT roughly equivalent, with the 8800GS running at about 85 - 90% the performance of the other two.

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    Comapre the 8800GS and 3870 here - you'll see the 8800GS performs well in most tests, and occasionally beats the 3870 techPowerUp :: EVGA e-GeForce 8800 GS 384 MB Review :: Page 6 / 25

    This is the card in the review: EVGA GeForce 8800 GS 384MB GDDR3 HDTV/Dual DVI (PCI-Express) - Retail (E851) £93 though....
    Last edited by cptwhite_uk; 20-04-2008 at 09:48 AM.

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    8800GTS 320 or 640.
    They are good powerful cards and are unde £100 now new.

    I had an EVGA 320mb one a few months back and it chomped through BiosShock, Oblivion and BF2 flawlessly on high settings.

    OcUK GeForce 8800 GTS 320MB GDDR3 HDTV/Dual DVI (PCI-Express) - Retail
    and
    OcUK GeForce 8800 GTS 640MB GDDR3 HDTV/Dual DVI (PCI-Express) - Retail (great value imo)

    There is little to nothing in between the 8800GTS 320/8800GTS 640 and the 3870.
    It just sepends on whether you prefer ATI or nVidia really.

    (Sorry about the site but they are good value)
    Last edited by Blitzen; 20-04-2008 at 09:49 AM.

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    I would get a HD3850 512Mb for under £90:

    Sapphire HD 3850 Pro 512MB GDDR3 Dual DVI TVOut PCI-E Graphics card - Ebuyer

    Computer hardware and software at amazing prices, available online from Scan Computers UK

    or the cheaper 8880GS cards:

    This XFX one is £76:

    Computer hardware and software at amazing prices, available online from Scan Computers UK

    This EVGA one is £85:

    Computer hardware and software at amazing prices, available online from Scan Computers UK

    If you can get the one off Saverstore it should do reasonably well even in modern titles and is the cheapest new 8800GS I have seen so far!!

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    Thanks for all the responses so far. Have to admit to a hankering for a 3870 although the 9600GT does seem a very good buy at that price point.

    Equally, there seems to be a lot to be said for the 8800GS at the lower price point up against the 3850

    Mmmm, decisions, decisions
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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    Quote Originally Posted by Blitzen View Post
    8800GTS 320 or 640.
    They are good powerful cards and are unde £100 now new.

    I had an EVGA 320mb one a few months back and it chomped through BiosShock, Oblivion and BF2 flawlessly on high settings.

    OcUK GeForce 8800 GTS 320MB GDDR3 HDTV/Dual DVI (PCI-Express) - Retail
    and
    OcUK GeForce 8800 GTS 640MB GDDR3 HDTV/Dual DVI (PCI-Express) - Retail (great value imo)

    There is little to nothing in between the 8800GTS 320/8800GTS 640 and the 3870.
    It just sepends on whether you prefer ATI or nVidia really.

    (Sorry about the site but they are good value)
    Leaving aside any other issues people may have with OcUK, I've never had a problem with their sales or after-sales service. Whereas I have with Scan - sales service, anyway. 'Your mileage may vary' as our transatlantic cousins might say.
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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    Quote Originally Posted by phoenix198 View Post
    Thanks for all the responses so far. Have to admit to a hankering for a 3870 although the 9600GT does seem a very good buy at that price point.

    Equally, there seems to be a lot to be said for the 8800GS at the lower price point up against the 3850

    Mmmm, decisions, decisions
    With the newer drivers the performance of the HD3870 has got much better. However if you are playing older games an HD3850 512mb or 8800GS 384MB should be more than enough in reality. A HD3850 for instance is more powerful than a X1950XTX card for most things!!

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    Quote Originally Posted by phoenix198 View Post
    I'm currently putting together a system from an assemblage of older parts and cast-offs:

    Athlon 64 X2 3800+ AM-2
    Asus M2NPV-VM motherboard
    2Gb DDR2 667
    etc

    Motherboard has integrated VGA for the immediate short-term, but what would people recommend as a PCI-E graphics upgrade to allow playable frame rates for 2-3 year old games (HL2, CoD2 and similar) at 1920x1200 resolution?

    I realize I could chuck a 9800GTX or 3870 X2 in there and it would chomp its way through most things but which card would give the best bang per buck and wouldn't suffer from excessive CPU limiting?

    Budget would be in the £80 - £100 bracket, I guess

    Thanks in advance

    i am running a similar setup but with 3850 512 oc and happily game at 1600x1200 (e.g cod4, TF2, bioshock), however, as you want 1920 instead i suggest 3870...

    i would budget at about 100 max for the 3870 and about 80 max for 3850 512mb...

    i don't recommend less than 512mb...

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    HD3850 512 -> GTS 640 -> 3870, in that order

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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+


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    Re: Recommend a card to 'match' an Athlon X2 3800+

    Went for the Powercolor HD3870 with passive heatsink - this one which I picked up from K0nigen on the classifieds forum. Silence and a desire to try an ATi again has probably triumphed over the logical choice as suggested by rick1967

    Thanks to all for the suggestions
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