View Full Version : To upgrade or not to upgrade, that is the question...
08-22-08, 03:23 AM
Hi, all. Some of you may have seen my recent thread about getting a new card, which turned quickly into a whole discussion about my options (which have gotten me really thinking) wrt to monitors, video cards, etc.
For those of you who aren't familiar with the other thread: my birthday's coming soon and my parents have offered to get me some new computer parts or to just give me money. If you look at the system in my sig, you can see that it's a pretty nice rig -- it runs all my games, from Wolfenstein to Bioshock and I generally have a great gaming experience.
Do you all think that an upgrade to a faster card and a nicer monitor (I'm running a 19") or an upgrade to a much faster card with the same monitor is worth it? Should I just pocket the money and hang on to it until I start seeing games that truly crawl?
The lure of new hardware tempts me so, but I just want some feedback from others who have upgraded from similar rigs to mine if it's really worth it (or from those who were going to but decided otherwise).
What res. are you running on your 19" screen? A bigger monitor would be a nice upgrade, but a higher res. will obviously drop your FPS.
As stated before, here are my thoughts:
-Upgrading your video card won't do much for you at your current monitor's res (1280x1040). So that would essentially be a waste of money for now.
-Upgrading your monitor, depending on the size you get, could drop performance enough to make you want a newer GPU. Getting a 24"+ (1920x1200) will make you want a new GPU. Getting a 20"+ (1680x1050) will drop your performance slightly, and I feel this is the sweet spot you should aim for. Getting a 19" (1440x900) actually uses slightly fewer pixels than your current res, and should offer the same performance, but for a WS, this is slightly smaller than your current 19".
-I feel that you should first upgrade your monitor, and then determine if a new GPU is needed. If your happy with your current performance, 23" and lower should offer good enough performance for your tastes. If you go 24" and above, you're either going to sacrifice some performance, or get a higher end GPU.
-Head to BestBuy/CircuitCity and look at the monitors. I saw MisterMister's post, and while he may not be able to tell the difference between 20" and 22", I and many others can. You should look at these screens to see what the ideal size for you is. I current use THIS MONITOR (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824001273&Tpk=t220) and Circuit City currently has it on sale in store for $300, $270 after rebate. I absolutely love this monitor, and I don't feel you should go cheap here as some have suggested, since whatever monitor you buy, you're going to be looking at through at least 2-3 more GPU purchases.
-When upgrading from an 8800GT, don't go for a marginal boost. A 9800GT/GTX/GTX+ shouldn't even be on your radar. You should be considering an HD4870 or GTX260, IMO. Anything less will be a marginal boost for the money. But, get the monitor first, and who knows, maybe the 8800GT would still be fine for you. I'm currently on a 22", and my 9600GT (slower than your card) is more than enough.
I'd go for a 20-22" monitor, you can still runs many games comfortably at that resolution with your current video card and it is really a great "bang for the buck" upgrade.
08-22-08, 09:59 AM
You don't need another thread on this.
08-22-08, 10:37 AM
Get a bigger monitor. The VP2650wb that I bought awhile ago seems to be nice bang for buck, as an example. It is a 26" TN panel with 1920x1200 resolution.
If you get low frame rate in some games at 1920x1200, use lower resolution and scaling or windowed mode. I have not had any problems because of the higher resolution, only benefits.
My hardware is:
AMD X2 3800+
8800 GTS 512
Upgrade to DELL 2408WFP then upgrade to GTX 280, by then it should be around $375.
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