SWTOR Graphics Card Recs, Mid-Range, Research and Options inside!

farbs

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Hello all

I have recently picked up SWTOR and it would appear my current video card (GTX 260) does not handle the game so well. Other specs of the machine are as follows:

gigabyte ud3r
i7 930
12gb ddr3 ram
intel 80gb ssd
900w psu

I am playing at 1920x1200 resolution

I want to upgrade and tried out a GTX 550ti but really didn't see any noticeable improvements.

I am looking for something in the $150-250 range.

From some research and referencing these sites:

http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/high_end_gpus.html
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-card-review,3107-4.html
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/star-wars-gaming-tests-review,3087.html

Is the bench-marking during beta reliable? Why weren't the 6870/560ti tested?

I have come to the conclusion that the HD 6870 is probably the best bang for your buck GPU in this range:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150521

The 2GB version is only $20 more (I am no expert, but it seems like it would be worth it?):

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150563

Now I have always leaned towards NVIDIA, so for $40 more ontop of the 2GB HD 6870, at this point would it just be worth it to get the GTX 560TI:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130604

Open to any recs/advice.

Thanks

-Scott

 

Frizzo

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i am running it on a pretty powerful machine, and i dont like the way it runs. mmos are so problematic because of the server side issues...i don't have much time for playing games, but when i do i'd like to see it with AA turned up, and the gtx 560 really isn't handling it all that well imo. i think i'm going to order a 2gb version, maybe the 2gb instead of 1gb will make a difference, i doubt it though.
 

ringzero

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The 260 Ti is still a decent card, though older generation. As another poster said, SWTOR has produced a wide variety of performance issues for all kinds of people. Doesn't matter what card, someone can be running it beautifully, while another with the same card will have major problems.

What exactly do you mean that "it doesn't handle the game so well?" What FPS are you getting and in what circumstances? Any other problems?

You can get a 6870 for $150. If your budget goes up to $250, get a GTX 560 Ti or a Radeon 6950.
 

digitalzom-b

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I'd say a 6870 should do you good... the rest of your system is pretty nice though, so if you want to match it up better, a 6950 or 560ti might be a better choice. Probably lean towards the 6950 because of the 2gb, even though you probably won't need it soon...
 

ringzero

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It's still open for debate on whether this will help for SW:TOR (at 1920x1200 resolution), but it will most likely help for future games. Also, this is not an extra $20 from a standard 6870, this is a $20 increase over that overclocked 6870 you linked. It's around $50-$70 more than a standard 6870. If it were me playing on SW:TOR, I'd buy a 1GB 6950 instead.
 

Tyndaleon

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I wouldn't (and didn't). FYI, if you buy the Sapphire 6870 card from Amazon before the 15th, there's a $20 rebate too (unless the card has gone up, it was ~$160). I ordered one just before New Years to upgrade from my 4870 for SWTOR, very happy with the boost from it. Before, with all settings on low I'd get around 20 FPS on the Fleet (which is the laggiest area in the game for me). Now I can get a little better performance there with all dropdowns on high.
 

farbs

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So which 6870 card would you get?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100006662&IsNodeId=1&Description=6870&bop=And&Order=RATING&PageSize=20
 

Frizzo

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yeah i should be more clear...i expect a lot. also there is a variable which i won't bother to go into...the frame-rates they show you are average..it may say 47fps but you are actually at 20fps..and YES i can see the difference...in large areas like the city type areas in the game...it gets a bit choppy...i want true 30fps minimum even at the most stressing game environment...sometimes my framerate says like 32..but it's more like 17. the game in general runs fine with the 560..but it dips a lot in stressful areas...
 

Frizzo

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btw people say all kinds of bullshit online in regard to frame rates...i remember people saying "oh yea i play eq2 with everything maxxed at 60fps, never drops below 60fps"...i doubt the computers at NORAD could run fkn eq2 at 60fps with everything maxxed and never dropping....a lot of it is coding and serverside, rather than the hardware itself. i really doubt a 6950 will keep you above 50fps with everything maxxed in the city areas (maybe standing still) move around a bit, swing the mouse to 45 degree turns etc.
 

farbs

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Thanks

I actually get an additional 5% cash back from amazon w/ chase freedom, so this is the route to go if I go HD 6870
 

deadjon

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I will always agree with going to the top end of your Budget - it ensures longevity and enjoyment. I can pretty much guarantee you'd be happy with a 6950 2GB - you won't have to worry about the resolution gimping your 1GB frame buffer on any game and the Price/Perf ratio on them is outstanding.

+1 for 6950 2GB
 

ringzero

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Sapphire is a good brand. At least I hope. That's what I have.
 


some people don't listen. they have a certain mindset before they come here and stick with it. others think that performance means high FPS and that's all. they're totally oblivious of cards and their architecture and what that has to do with anything.
 

farbs

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I didn't really have a certain mindset coming into this thread other than getting the best qual/performance per money for what I am playing now. I already admitted before that I do not know what makes all the cards different, I am trying to learn which is another reason why I come and post/read here.

From what I understand, it's apparent that there are 3 good choices:
HD 6870
GTX 560TI
HD 6950

I am merely trying to weigh the options. I dont know what I will play next and if I will even play anything after this. Sure the 6950 is only $100 more than the 6870 and I dont mind spending the extra $100, but if its going to be overkill, I tend to re think the options.
 

hythos

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I'm using an MSI 6950 2gb OC TwinFreezer II (their FROZR designation is absolutely retarded) at 1920x1200 and an AMD PhII-955 @ 3.6-3.8ghz (sometimes it's unstable at 3.8), full detail, and never a framerate problem.

I often forget that the resolution is up that high, because even at max settings, SWToR still doesn't look as good as Bioware lead me to believe it would.
 

ringzero

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There's a known issue with SW:TOR where only medium-resolution textures are being used (at least for character models, I'm not sure about everything else). You set it to High in preferences, but really only medium textures are used. Hopefully this will be fixed in the next patch or two and our characters at least should look much, much better.

Also, anti-aliasing is currently not supported in the game. If you don't like how it looks, go into the Radeon control panel and turn on anti-aliasing to 2x, 4x, or 8x. I started at 4x and it looks a lot better, but wound up going back to 2x to balance performance.

Shadows still look horrible, though. This likely won't change until Bioware starts supported DX11 features, if they ever do.
 

RockHaven1

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Hmmmm...I just upgraded to a gtx550ti specificly to play SWTOR. My old junker system wont handle much more. I have an Athlon dual core 2.8 ghz processer and a 620 antec power supply installed with that GTX550ti card. I plan on further improvements..ie new board and processer but that's down the road a bit. Hope I can play the game.
 

scott311

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I've got an i5-2500k, 8gb, a gtx260, and Windows 7 and run everything on high. Try running SWTOR in XP SP3 compatibility mode, if you're using Windows 7.
 

hythos

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Yep! :) I've forced 8xAA through the CCC; I am surprised as to how easily the 6950 can handle SWTOR - though, I've read that some changes can be made in a .ini, and just haven't (not sure all of what it was for). I might have the guts to OC/unlock it like I've planned, but the MSI mkII is doing OK for now.
(I should add that I use low shadows, because they're pretty much meaningless, yet).
 

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