2x 8800GTS 512 -- 2x 4850 or single 4890?

g3force

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Hello,

I'm planning to upgrade my system. Current specs are

--C2D E8400 @ 4.0 Ghz.
--8800GTS 512
--ASUS Maximus II Formula motherboard (p45)
--2x2Gb Corsair XMS2
--Corsair 850TX
Both the motherboard and PSU were purchased from a friend who was upgrading to an i7 system. The monitor resolution is 1680 x 1050.

As of now I have thought of 3 upgrade options. If any of you think up a further upgrade plan, please feel free to give your input.

1) Salvage an EVGA 680i SLI motherboard and buy a second 8800GTS 512 in a SLI configuration.
2) Sell the 8800GTS and buy two 4850s and put them in a CF configuration.
3) Buy a single 4890 and possibly add one down the road if needed.

My maximum budget is $250 which includes all funds from the 8800GTS if I decide to sell it.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated :)
 

hundredislandsboy

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Forget about the SLI. You have $250. Sell the 8800 GTS 512. Add the proceeds to your budget. That should be enough for a GTX 285 which will perform better than SLI'd 8800 GTS 512s.
XFX GX285XZWBF GeForce GTX 285 1GB Black Edition
 

g3force

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Thank you for the prompt response.
I mentioned earlier (though I didn't elaborate) that I can salvage a EVGA 680i SLI motherboard from an old server system which I hardly ever keep running. That would give me the ability to SLI two 8800GTS's, though I admit I'd rather avoid that upgrade plan.

I believe I mentioned earlier that the resolution I'll be using is 1680 x 1050.

I tried looking up benchmarks and previous threads comparing two 4850's in crossfire VS. a single 4890. Views seemed to be mixed, and sadly the charts section on TH doesn't include crossfire setups.
 
Stick with what you have, motherboards with nVidia chipsets.....don't even go there.
You got a great overclock going, change to an nVidia board and never know what you end up with. Most likely it will not be as stable and reliable as what you have now.

4890 is what I would do.
 

g3force

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Thats an idea, though I'm wondering whether I should go for an ATI card as my current board will give me the option to Crossfire two cards down the road. Any thoughts?
 

Amg

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might as well use his crossfire ablities at a later stage if needed. the GTX285 is a nice card but annoylingly it can be beaten by a cheaper GTX275 and HD4890

so with the money you saved you can use on something else.
 

g3force

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:lol: That's the reason why I'm a bit hesitant to use the Nvidia board. I could hardly hit 3.6 without stability and NB overheating problems (not to mention it had a hard time giving stable voltage to the memory).
Thanks for the advice for the 4890, though would it be possible if you could elaborate on your reasoning?
 

Amg

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the HD4890 is the first GPU to hit over 1Ghz and its exremtly well priced its just a capable card, good all rounder. you get alot of card for your money. not saying Nvida cards are bad, they are just over priced.
 

g3force

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Thank you for your input. As of now I'm leaning towards the 4890. However, I've heard that the 4890 can cause a annoying amount of fan noise, but opinions are mixed. Has anyone had any experience with the 4890? In the worst case scenario I'll put on a pair of headphones :)
 

Amg

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I have 2 HD4890 in crossfire only annoyinly loud when the fan is turned right up on auto they are quite quiet cards

tip game with a headset ;)
 

g3force

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Thanks for the input! I'll be ordering the 4890 tonight, or possibly tomorrow night.
My last question is, is there any brand you would suggest, or should I go for the card with the best warranty/price?
 

Amg

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if your overclocking them asus do a voltage tweak, and the warrenty covers it in case you put too much in and blow it, so the asus one in that case
sapphire has the best bundle with vantage, powerDVD and stuff
powercolour have one with a differet fan which is supposed to be quite effective and quite
than you got HIS and XFX there are no differents at this point unless you get teh sapphire atmic which is limited edtion
 


A 680i can do SLi.

And two 4850s will wipe the floor with a 4870

4870 < 4890 ~ GTX275 ~/< GTX280 < GTX285 < 2x4850
 

g3force

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Interesting. So would the best option be CrossFiring two 4850's? Secondly, would I feel any noticeable difference between 512MB and 1GB of VRAM at 1680 x 1050?
 

The_Blood_Raven

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They are about the exact same when it comes to how the game "feels", but the 8800 GTS 512s will do better in benchmarks. I've directly compared them.
 

hundredislandsboy

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You benchmark a single GTX 275 and it get beat by dual 8800 GTS 512s? Did you overclock the GTX 275? In benchmarks, my GTX 260 beats my dual 9800 GTs but only if I overclock the GTX 260. At 1680 X 1050, the GTX 260 pulls faster framerates in CoD4 and Crysis than the twin 9800 GTs and the lone GTX 260 stays cooler too and is less noisy... all pluses right?
 

The_Blood_Raven

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Both are factory spec, but both the 8800 GTS 512s and the GTX 285 overclock about the same so it is irrelevant. The negative is the price, $80-$100 for another 8800 GTS 512 or a $200+ for the 4890/GTX 275/GTX 285.



Exactly.
 

g3force

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At this point I'm leaning towards buying a single 4890 now, and buy a second one in future if a upgrade is needed.

The idea of CF'ing two 4850's is compelling, but after looking up some benchmarks it looks like it doesn't give even performance across the board. The 4890 on the other hand will give enough performance right now and leaves me the option of adding another card instead of dumping two cards for an upgrade.

I'm not entirely sure if the latest ATI drivers have fixed the CF performance issue/drop I saw in some of the benchmarks as I've never used an ATI card before (asides from an ATI Rage 128 card my Dad had in his PC a long time ago).
 
1) If you are going to upgrade, get something that is at least a couple of levels better.
8800GTS-512 > GTX275/4890 or better. Anything less, and you will be disappointed by a small gain.

2) I would pick a single card with a single vga chip if possible. Dual cards and dual chips do not always scale well. It is a more complex system.

3) I would stick with a Nvidia card, just because you will not have to change out drivers, and you know how the nvidia drivers work. If you already had ati, I would suggest ati.

4) Your 1680x resolution is not that demanding, so something crazy is not needed for good gaming.

4890 and GTX275 are comparable cards. Unless you have a favorite game, don't bother looking for minor differences.

Net: sell the 8800GTS and shop for a GTX275

40nm parts will launch by the end of the year. You might want to wait and see what comes.

 
Two 8800GT/9800GTs are very powerful, besting the GTX280 @ stock and almost equaling the GTX285 @ stock in many games and at most resolutions as well.

I'm not sure how a GTX260 was able to beat it, unless it was massively OCed or the drivers/game didn't enable SLi very well.