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  1. #1
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    New Radeon 5870 video card.

    My son saved his summer money an bought the new Radeon 5870 video card to replace his Nvidia 8800 gtx which died. Man its a great card. He's a big gamer and is running Crysis at very high settings with no problems on his 23" HD monitor at 1900x1200 res. I guess its the fastest single GPU card available. The rest of his system is an EVGA 790i SLI ultra MOBO with an Intel Q9950 CPU, 4gigs of dual channel matched DDR3 ram at 1600mHz and a Veliceraptor 10,000 rpm HD. Its a nice system that we built together from scratch.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  2. #2
    Forum Regular audio amateur's Avatar
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    Nice. I wonder how much it cost...

  3. #3
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    My son paid $380 at newegg. But one of his gaming buddies paid $350. Its much cheaper than an NVIDIA GTX 295 which sells for $450-550 for about the same performance and no direct X11 which will become much more prevalent and better than Direct X10. Nvidia prices will drop come the end of Nov. when the new GTX 300 series cards come out. I suppose the Radeon will drop in price as well. Radeon will be coming out with a 5890 in the spring.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  4. #4
    Rep points are my LIFE!! Groundbeef's Avatar
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    I picked up a GTX 285 @BB for $215 on 'clearance'. Not sure what was up with that. The card usually runs around $400.

    I got lucky.
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  5. #5
    Forum Regular audio amateur's Avatar
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    And here I am with my 9600 pro...

  6. #6
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Groundbeef
    I picked up a GTX 285 @BB for $215 on 'clearance'. Not sure what was up with that. The card usually runs around $400.

    I got lucky.

    Thats a great price on a gtx 285. We were looking at the BFG GTX285 FUBU which is the fastest 285 out there with the gpu clocked at 714mHz and the memory at 2600.
    For $215 you could have bought 2 of those 285's and run them in SLI mode. That would out perform the gtx295 which is basically dual gtx 275's on one board.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  7. #7
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by audio amateur
    And here I am with my 9600 pro...
    you could pick up a gtx card and use the 9600 as a dedicated physx card. The 200 series gtx cards are going to drop way down in price because the Nvidia gtx300 series cards are to be released in Nov.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  8. #8
    Forum Regular audio amateur's Avatar
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    I would, only it's in my 5 year old laptop
    However my parents are changing computers around Christmas so I'll have a little fun advising (that's also why I was asking about screens in another thread). Their Pentium 3 is still going strong in the mean time.

  9. #9
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    Kudos to you for building your own blackraven. I built my last two systems and I'm more than happy with my latest.

    Mine consists of an nVidia graphics card because, quite frankly I was tired of dealing with (at the time) ATI's crap drivers. Have things improved in that department now that AMD is more integrated into the product?

  10. #10
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    Yeah...

    I plan to build a whole new system for myself either late this year or early next. Just waiting on AMD's newest chipset, and possiblem USB 3. I'm currently running an old AMD FX-60 with an ATI 3870 graphics card. I thimk it's time for an upgrade.

    Da Worfster

  11. #11
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    Kudos to you for building your own blackraven. I built my last two systems and I'm more than happy with my latest.

    Mine consists of an nVidia graphics card because, quite frankly I was tired of dealing with (at the time) ATI's crap drivers. Have things improved in that department now that AMD is more integrated into the product?
    It was fun building the computer. We have done major upgrades before, but never a whole computer.

    Rich, ATI has made a commitment to keeping their drivers up to date and they are releasing new drivers about once a month. They know that they have to compete with NVIDIA. They had fallen way behind NVIDIA, but with the new graphics cards they are keeping up. We vacillated back and forth on whether to go with ATI or not. We have always gone with NVIDIA in the past. But everything we read on line seemed like ATI got it together.

    The 5870 runs really cool, havent seen any temps above 50c playing Crysis. And it idles at about 28c. It runs Unreal tournament III at max setting at 1900x1200 and 16xAA/AF very smooth.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  12. #12
    nightflier
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    The new 5870 is a significant improvement and the reviews are impressive, but keep in mind that AMD/ATI is still struggling with its reorg. With Intel having such a lead on the CPU side, AMD is fighting a multi-front war. While the home-built market has certainly slowed down in favor of the complete-box solutions, the place this really hurts AMD is in their corporate sales. Very few companies still build systems in-house, whereas just a few years ago that was still the norm. Now it's pretty much policy that one-box solutions are the only option (at my company we can get fired for doing otherwise w/o a really good reason). Even Microsoft now makes their licensing much harder on part-built systems than on the one-box solutions from the major vendors. Anyhow, AMD needs to find a way to revive the parts-built market by providing greater value and performance. They certainly are struggling in the OEM arena, but there is still opportunity in reviving the home-market, especially in this economy where people are looking for more affordable alternatives.

    Another detail I wanted to point out is that if you have anything more than 3Gb of RAM on a system with a 32-bit OS, then the additional RAM is wasted. Microsoft Windows XP/Vista 32-bit (I presume that's what most people use), cannot make use of more than 3Gb of RAM. The only way to access the rest of it is to upgrade, or rather replace it, with a 64-bit version of Windows.

    Also, the video cards will swap their memory in & out of the upper portions of RAM when they run out of their own VRAM. This is a significant drag on performance, because most systems have much slower RAM than VRAM, mostly because it has further to travel across the bus. Ideally, the more one can keep rendering in VRAM, the better. Now the 5870 has 1Gb of very fast VRAM so that's not likely to be an issue with just about every game out there today, but if you're still using a 256Mb card (like I am), that's going to be a significant factor, especially at higher resolutions and quality settings. If you're then also using a 32-bit OS, then that memory is also going to be taken from that precious 3Gb of RAM that's being used to run the programs.

    We run FireGL cards at my work (which are OK for the occasional & unauthorized gaming break), but the real bottleneck has been that they are 256Mb cards. Fortunately, we did have the foresight to go 64-bit ever since we could on our Windows machines (much longer, on our *-nix and Apples, of course). But being a bit older, these systems don't have the memory speed to keep up and this does affect performance and ultimately worker productivity, especially since we moved to Vista (the worst decision we made in a long time, BTW). And with our hands tied from opening and custom-configuring the boxes, the only solution is to buy whole new systems, that we really don't have the budget for right now. Considering we now have an "efficiency expert" (think Bob Slydell from Office Space) actively "working" to streamline our business processes, our own Lumbergh is keeping descent to a whisper.

    OK, I need to get back to filing my TPS reports now....

  13. #13
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Your right NF, any thing more that 3gigs is a waste in 32bit. We're running Vista 64bit home Premium on 2 computers and xp on another. Both V64 machines have 4gigs DDR3. Windows 7 will be an improvement over vista. Gamers already like the Beta version of windows 7. We have a free upgrade to Windows 7 64bit home premium and I'll post a review on it when we get it.

    VRAM also becomes an issue with large monitors over 23" and high resolution. Thats why there are versions of video cards offering 1768mb-2gigs of VRAM, otherwise you dont need that much.

    The Radeon card can run 3 monitors at 2500x1500 resolution. Thats the beauty of this card and its price point. No NVIDIA card can touch it in this area.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  14. #14
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    I agree with NF regarding GPU memory vs system memory. My 8600GT somethingorother card only has I think 512 MB onboard, so S.T.A.L.K.E.R doesn't play very well. I made a mistake when I bought that game, but the video card was what was in my budget when I bought it a couple of years ago.

    All this PC gaming talk is giving me the itch again. I play some games on my PS3 once-in-a-while, but I'm still having a hard time getting used to the thumb wheels. I have a CH products HOTAS which workes great with MS Flightsim... gotta get that one fired up again.

  15. #15
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    Let's bring this one back up...

    Quote Originally Posted by blackraven
    you could pick up a gtx card and use the 9600 as a dedicated physx card. The 200 series gtx cards are going to drop way down in price because the Nvidia gtx300 series cards are to be released in Nov.
    Glad I re-read this because I'm thinking about another nVidia graphics card, and I was looking at a GTX250 for under $150. Seems like a steal for what you get. I'll have to keep an eye out for the 300's. Any leads on pricing and availability?

  16. #16
    nightflier
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    Blackraven, you certainly know your stuff. I've never really been much into computer gaming (I think I tapped out when I couldn't figure out how to finish the last Elder Scrolls installment), so my knowledge of game cards is mostly technical (and probably outdated). I did read, though, that AMD-ATI still isn't completely on-board with the Linux community, and drivers for this card are a problem there. For me, that's a big issue. Of course, the number of games that play on Linux is laughable too, so I guess it's a moot point, but it's more of a protest decision on my part, I suppose.

    In any case, I'm glad the card is working out for ya.

  17. #17
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    Yeah thanks for helping me out flyboy!


  18. #18
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    I try to keep up with computer tech bcause of my son always wanting a bigger and better computer every few years. I get his rejects.

    Rich, don't get the gtx 250, its just a rebadged 8800 gtx. Go for the gtx 260 or 275 if possible. Wait a few weeks when the new NVIDIA gtx 300 series come out. The prices on the gtx 200 series should really drop fast, but don't wait too long because the 200's will sell out quickly once the prices fall.

    I would even consider the Radeon 5850 which is direct x 11 compatible.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  19. #19
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    Okay. I'll wait and see what prices look like for the 300 series. If they're too high, I'll do like you said and go after a 260 or 275. Amazon's got all sorts of nVidia cards right now which is good and bad. I haven't done much research lately, so I need to get up to speed tech-wise, but nevertheless, prices are reasonable.

    And while I'm sure you're very happy with your Radeon BR, for me, just too many bad experiences in the past with ATI and their driver architecture. Just IMO though.

    Direct X 11??? What DX version is Windows 7 using I wonder.

  20. #20
    Rep points are my LIFE!! Groundbeef's Avatar
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    Just upgraded to Win7 yesterday on my laptop. I don't think it changed directX. At least I haven't noticed a change.
    Pioneer Reciever VSX-1015TX
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  21. #21
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Win7 is directX eleven ready! The PC game Dirt-2 will be released in Dec. and will be the first DX eleven game available. The NVIDIA gtx 200 series cards will not run DX-11
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

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