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Old 10-07-08, 06:54 PM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Old Vizima
Posts: 3,679
Default Re: Ati or Nvidia? Upgrade Advice

A 260 should do 660-700 with little trouble. They're good cards. If you can afford it get the 280.

Two 260s @ 660-700 in SLi would be very fast and they are at a nice price point now. 260s would also work with Tri-SLi. You can't run SLi in your mobo however Intel's X58 is coming up and it will be able to do SLi.

I'm a fan of single strong GPUs. An overclocked 260 will get the job done @ 1920x with filtering save in Crysis if you set all very high. The new 260 with slightly more shaders is also an option. At the same clocks as the regular 260 it's about 1-3% faster. It's below the 280 in price. You might jump to the 280 instead depending on your budget.

One reason you may want to stick with nVidia is quite a few games will be coming out with PhysX support. You could use that old 8800GTS as a PhysX card in the mobo you currently own. I'll post some PhysX results below.

If I were you I'd probably kick that E6600 up to 3.0-3.2GHz and get the cheapest 260 or 280 you can find and OC it. BTW the E6600 I had back in the day would do 3.0-3.1GHz on stock voltage. With 1.52v it did 3.75GHz. If you are using the stock HSF stick to 3.0GHz.


Warmonger, results @ a 1440x res. Max settings. CPU is a Q6600 G-0 @ 3.51GHz.

GTX 260 doing PhysX @ 760|2600 1580 = 93FPS

Adding an 8800GT @ 700|2000 1750 = 123FPS

As above but 1920x-

Single GTX 260 doing PhysX = 71FPS

Adding an 8800GT @ 700|2000 1750 to do PhysX = 88FPS

I got roughly the same results with MKZ. CPU PhysX was only in the low 20s and GPU PhysX was 60+ FPS.

My results match up well with tests Firingsquad did-

Where PhysX may boost performance or add effects-

Running the various games that include PhysX support made me acutely aware of just how many things are effected by physics in gaming.

Below is an old post I did with my GTX 260 using card killer games @ 1920x like; Crysis, WiC and Lost Planet.

Below is a review that includes all the cards you mention in a ton of games-

Since the HD 4870 and GTX 260 are often very close I'd get the 260 or 280 to leave the door open for GPU PhysX support.
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