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Guild Wars 2

Guild Wars 2 

General Discussion  » Card Upgrade for GW2

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37 posts found
  Pretender00

Novice Member

Joined: 10/29/10
Posts: 85

 
OP  8/13/12 5:40:33 PM#1

Replacing  my old HD4770 card for a new one for launch.

I have between $150 and $200US to spend.

Can anyone tell me if they think that the GTX 550ti 2GB would be better than a HD6870 1GB?

 

I know the HD6870 is a better card but would the extra 1GB of memory be worth it in getting the 550ti?

 

Or I might go with a HD6950 2GB for 199$ but would looking for value to my money.

 

 

  Slapshot1188

Elite Member

Joined: 5/06/07
Posts: 4115

8/13/12 5:44:18 PM#2

The memory would really depend on the resolution you want to run games at.

 

For the record, I ran the last beta event on an integrated GPU on the ivybridge 3570k and I got 40FPS in WvWvW.  Not recommending it, and I only did so because my videocard (a 7950) was being RMAed but it seems proof that the game is processor driven as opposed to GPU.

 

 

 

"I should point out that no other company has shipped out a beta on a disc before this." - Official Mortal Online Lead Community Moderator

Starvault's reponse to criticism related to having a handful of players as the official "test" team for a supposed MMO: "We've just have another 10ish folk kind enough to voulenteer added tot the test team" (SIC) This explains much about the state of the game :-)

  Pretender00

Novice Member

Joined: 10/29/10
Posts: 85

 
OP  8/13/12 5:48:04 PM#3
1900x1080
  DrDwarf

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/05/08
Posts: 502

8/13/12 5:57:36 PM#4

I have a HD6870 for just over 8 months and although I haven't played GW2 I had it running SWTOR and TSW without any problems at all.

I have owned HD4870 in 512k and 1G forms for Warhmmer/AoC/Aion/WOW/Rift  and had no real problems with those games either.  

The HD6870 is a great card though and I am very happy with mine at the price I paid.

I can't imagine you'll have too much of an issue with either card - or at least nort one that a lot of people will have an issue with becasue a large % of players are not going to have anything like the best gaming gear.

I am currently running Windows 764bit on a cheap ASUS Socket 775 Board, 8gigs of DDR3 Ram and a Core 2 duo (E8500) OC 20%.

 

 

  Pretender00

Novice Member

Joined: 10/29/10
Posts: 85

 
OP  8/13/12 6:05:48 PM#5
Originally posted by DrDwarf

I have a 6870 and although I haven't played GW2 I had it running SWTOR and TSW without any problems at all.

i have owned HD4870 in 512 and 1gig forms for Warhmmer/AoC/Aion/wOW/Rift  and had no real problems with those games either.  The HD6870 is a great card though and i am very happy with mine at the price I paid.

I can't imagine you'll have too much of an issue with either card - or at least nort one that a lot of people will have an issue with becasue a large % of players are not going to have anything like the best gaming gear.

 

 The biggest problem I have is in WvWvW where I go from about 40fps to around 18fps in any decent size battles. I'm hoping jumping from my 4770 to a 6870 will improve this... I guess I'm questioning if the video ram would make that much difference in the fps for large size battles. My 4770 has only 512mb.

  DrDwarf

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/05/08
Posts: 502

8/13/12 6:08:25 PM#6
Originally posted by Pretender00
Originally posted by DrDwarf

I have a 6870 and although I haven't played GW2 I had it running SWTOR and TSW without any problems at all.

i have owned HD4870 in 512 and 1gig forms for Warhmmer/AoC/Aion/wOW/Rift  and had no real problems with those games either.  The HD6870 is a great card though and i am very happy with mine at the price I paid.

I can't imagine you'll have too much of an issue with either card - or at least nort one that a lot of people will have an issue with becasue a large % of players are not going to have anything like the best gaming gear.

 

 The biggest problem I have is in WvWvW where I go from about 40fps to around 18fps in any decent size battles. I'm hoping jumping from my 4770 to a 6870 will improve this... I guess I'm questioning if the video ram would make that much difference in the fps for large size battles. My 4770 has only 512mb.

I think you'd see a big difference in performance but if you dont, it wont be down to the card it will down to the game and there will be a lot of people in the same boat.

IME a huge % of mmorpg players have pretty low end machines and graphics cards marketed at people that dont know what they are buying.   

Although there are plenty of gamers around with high end  i7/i5 ++ processor based machines and the latest card they are not anywhere close to the majority and extra fps isnt much use if 95% of your pvp team are locked out of the game with crashes and freezes etc ...

Unless you have money to burn there is a fairly decent sized sweet spot for gaming PCs - so aiming at the middle to top end of that is a practical option.

What you dont want to do is get sucked into the more mem on the card is better.   It is the architecture of the card that matters and so go with the expert reviews.  also you like your current card, stick wit hthat manufacturer until there is a major reason to change (like a huge technology advance or a discounting exercise).

 

 

 

  Siris23

Hard Core Member

Joined: 5/13/09
Posts: 188

8/13/12 6:09:01 PM#7
Originally posted by Pretender00

Replacing  my old HD4770 card for a new one for launch.

I have between $150 and $200US to spend.

Can anyone tell me if they think that the GTX 550ti 2GB would be better than a HD6870 1GB?

 

I know the HD6870 is a better card but would the extra 1GB of memory be worth it in getting the 550ti?

 

Or I might go with a HD6950 2GB for 199$ but would looking for value to my money.

 

 

 the HD6950 is going to be the best performance (by a pretty good margin) of the 3, though in that price range you've also got the GTX 560 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500229

I'd still say the HD6950 is going to be the better performer though. 

Edit: I personally am using a 6950 now and it easily handles GW2 @1080 with everything turned up (didn't do much WvW though). I'm upgrading to a GTX670 so I can turn on Tess. in TSW, the 6950 just can't handle that :)  

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13309

8/13/12 6:16:21 PM#8
Originally posted by Pretender00

Can anyone tell me if they think that the GTX 550ti 2GB would be better than a HD6870 1GB?

No, and it's not even close.  If a game needs more than 1 GB of video memory, then the GPU chip on a GeForce GTX 550 Ti won't be able to handle it anyway.  Video memory, like system memory, is largely a matter of, either you have enough or you don't.  If you have enough, then adding more doesn't do any good.  And if you don't have enough, then performance will choke.  1 GB is usually enough up to a 1920x1200 monitor resolution.

Also, you should think of a 2 GB GeForce GTX 550 Ti as being effectively a 1.5 GB card with the other 0.5 GB attached for reasons of marketing rather than engineering.  (Likewise, the 1 GB version should be thought of as a 768 MB card with the other 256 MB attached for marketing reasons.)  Mismatching the memory channels means that it's logically impossible to get the full memory bandwidth if you use over 1.5 GB--and the card might well take a bandwidth hit before that, even.

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13309

8/13/12 6:23:03 PM#9
Originally posted by Siris23

 the HD6950 is going to be the best performance (by a pretty good margin) of the 3, though in that price range you've also got the GTX 560 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500229

I'd still say the HD6950 is going to be the better performer though. 

A GeForce GTX 560 performs in the same ballpark as a Radeon HD 6870.  It uses quite a bit more power, so I'd go with the 6870 unless the GTX 560 is cheaper--which it rarely is.

The Radeon HD 6950 is the next step up, and the competitor to a GeForce GTX 560 Ti.  The 6950 tended to be a little faster than a GTX 560 Ti.  But it's also discontinued and mostly gone, with that market segment now filled by a Radeon HD 7850, which is a little faster yet, in addition to using a lot less power and having a better feature set.

The only Nvidia card worth buying right now is a GeForce GTX 670, unless you find some other card at clearance prices.  And that's a $400 card, which is out of the budget of most people.  At every other price range, AMD has something better than Nvidia, unless you use an absurdly narrow definition of price range (e.g., wanting to spend exactly $190 as opposed to $180 or $200).  That's a simple consequence of AMD having its new lineup of cards out (the last one launched in March), while Nvidia mysteriously doesn't.  Nvidia's old 40 nm cards simply can't compete with AMD's new 28 nm cards--especially since they couldn't even compete with AMD's old 40 nm cards in most market segments.  Die shrinks are a big deal.

  Pretender00

Novice Member

Joined: 10/29/10
Posts: 85

 
OP  8/13/12 6:23:52 PM#10
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by Pretender00

Can anyone tell me if they think that the GTX 550ti 2GB would be better than a HD6870 1GB?

No, and it's not even close.  If a game needs more than 1 GB of video memory, then the GPU chip on a GeForce GTX 550 Ti won't be able to handle it anyway.  Video memory, like system memory, is largely a matter of, either you have enough or you don't.  If you have enough, then adding more doesn't do any good.  And if you don't have enough, then performance will choke.  1 GB is usually enough up to a 1920x1200 monitor resolution.

Also, you should think of a 2 GB GeForce GTX 550 Ti as being effectively a 1.5 GB card with the other 0.5 GB attached for reasons of marketing rather than engineering.  (Likewise, the 1 GB version should be thought of as a 768 MB card with the other 256 MB attached for marketing reasons.)  Mismatching the memory channels means that it's logically impossible to get the full memory bandwidth if you use over 1.5 GB--and the card might well take a bandwidth hit before that, even.

 So do you think the problem with low fps in large battles could be with my 512mb at 1920x1200 resolution and the card's lack of beefy gpu or would upping my system ram do more?  I'm only running at 4gb atm. I know it's probably a comination of alot of things considering I'm also running an AMD X2 250 @3.2Ghz  CPU as well. However in the last stress test my CPU never got above 70% even in large scale battles.

I can't afford to overhaul the whole thing at the moment and was thinking the video card upgrade would be the thing to start with.

  Andorhal

Novice Member

Joined: 11/27/07
Posts: 74

8/13/12 6:24:11 PM#11
I would suggest the 560 ti, great bang for your buck!
  DrDwarf

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/05/08
Posts: 502

8/13/12 6:34:39 PM#12
Originally posted by Pretender00
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by Pretender00

Can anyone tell me if they think that the GTX 550ti 2GB would be better than a HD6870 1GB?

No, and it's not even close.  If a game needs more than 1 GB of video memory, then the GPU chip on a GeForce GTX 550 Ti won't be able to handle it anyway.  Video memory, like system memory, is largely a matter of, either you have enough or you don't.  If you have enough, then adding more doesn't do any good.  And if you don't have enough, then performance will choke.  1 GB is usually enough up to a 1920x1200 monitor resolution.

Also, you should think of a 2 GB GeForce GTX 550 Ti as being effectively a 1.5 GB card with the other 0.5 GB attached for reasons of marketing rather than engineering.  (Likewise, the 1 GB version should be thought of as a 768 MB card with the other 256 MB attached for marketing reasons.)  Mismatching the memory channels means that it's logically impossible to get the full memory bandwidth if you use over 1.5 GB--and the card might well take a bandwidth hit before that, even.

 So do you think the problem with low fps in large battles could be with my 512mb at 1920x1200 resolution and the card's lack of beefy gpu or would upping my system ram do more?  I'm only running at 4gb atm. I know it's probably a comination of alot of things considering I'm also running an AMD X2 250 @3.2Ghz  CPU as well. However in the last stress test my CPU never got above 70% even in large scale battles.

I can't afford to overhaul the whole thing at the moment and was thinking the video card upgrade would be the thing to start with.

No point upping your motherboard RAM unless you are runnnig a 64 bit Operating System.   

It is most likely your card that can't handle the game sufficiently but you are still trying to up at least  one component when in reality you could do with upgrading the MB/Processor/RAM and the card.

Either way if you can't afford a new PC build upgrading your card makes sense unless you can build your own pc and you get some fantastic deal on motherboard/CPU combo that is approaching at least  the new i3.   

You need about $300-400 to buy a mid/high end i5+ processor and a motherboard new.

 To my mind there isnt much point doing something imbetween what you currently have and that for the cost / effort involved.  Then you'd still have a card thats below par and want to replace that anyway.

If I was building a gaming pc for MMORPGs from scratch right now I'd base it around an i7 or an i5 with a HD6870 or better depending on the budget.   64 bit OS and 8 gig of DDR3.      

 

 

  Lakytus

Hard Core Member

Joined: 7/07/04
Posts: 55

8/13/12 6:39:14 PM#13

The 6870 is almost twice the card of a 550TI.  However, if you can get a 6950 for $200, then definately go for that. Honestly, 1 gig of video ram isn't that much anymore and you will find that some games will go over, however it's not worth going with a less GPU for more ram.  If it's just for Guild Wars 2 it's probably not a big deal, but many other games do use more than 1 gig once you start adding AA and higher textures.

If you look hard enough, you may be able to get a 7850 2 gig for $200.

  Slapshot1188

Elite Member

Joined: 5/06/07
Posts: 4115

8/13/12 6:47:03 PM#14
Originally posted by Lakytus

The 6870 is almost twice the card of a 550TI.  However, if you can get a 6950 for $200, then definately go for that. Honestly, 1 gig of video ram isn't that much anymore and you will find that some games will go over, however it's not worth going with a less GPU for more ram.  If it's just for Guild Wars 2 it's probably not a big deal, but many other games do use more than 1 gig once you start adding AA and higher textures.

If you look hard enough, you may be able to get a 7850 2 gig for $200.

A few on sale here:  http://slickdeals.net/permadeal/78360/superbiiz-sapphire-radeon-hd-7850-2gb-gddr5-pci-express-3.0-video-cards-w-dirt-showdown-game-download-112000720g-205-112001420g-209-112000120g

 

 

"I should point out that no other company has shipped out a beta on a disc before this." - Official Mortal Online Lead Community Moderator

Starvault's reponse to criticism related to having a handful of players as the official "test" team for a supposed MMO: "We've just have another 10ish folk kind enough to voulenteer added tot the test team" (SIC) This explains much about the state of the game :-)

  Denambren

Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/03/08
Posts: 307

8/13/12 6:50:22 PM#15

What's your CPU specs?

 

GW2 doesn't really use much of the video card. I only get a 10 fps boost on my GTX 670 by putting detail to minimum at 1280 by 800 resolution. If I put it the max detail and 1920x1080, it's only 10 fps more of a drain. My GPU is at 40-50% load in the most heavy of frame drops. Players with worse cards than my GTX 670 are getting better framerates with higher CPU specs. (I've got an i7 at 3.9 ghz).

 

I'm hoping GW2 will improve their performance and actually use the video card someday. But  currently, your CPU will make a bigger punch than video card.

 

With that said, if you just want a recommendation for an upgade in general, I'd say find a bit of extra cash and go for the GTX 570 after rebate from here (239$ after rebate):

 

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130613

 

Later on when that card gets even cheaper, you can buy a used one and then go SLI.

  Pretender00

Novice Member

Joined: 10/29/10
Posts: 85

 
OP  8/13/12 7:16:47 PM#16

Thanks everyone,

I know what I need to do. I need to just rebuild my whole system. But, we just had a baby and it's hard to justify spending the extra money on myself at the moment. Maybe I should wait till the game launches and see where Arenanet stands on the CPU vs GPU issue. I didn't know why my fps was so crappy when my CPU never maxed out and my system said I had 1.5GB's of ram available even during seige battle. I blamed it on the video card but I guess it's too early to tell since I'm just basing it on Beta play.

I appreciate all the help :)

 

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13309

8/13/12 8:19:44 PM#17
Originally posted by Pretender00
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by Pretender00

Can anyone tell me if they think that the GTX 550ti 2GB would be better than a HD6870 1GB?

No, and it's not even close.  If a game needs more than 1 GB of video memory, then the GPU chip on a GeForce GTX 550 Ti won't be able to handle it anyway.  Video memory, like system memory, is largely a matter of, either you have enough or you don't.  If you have enough, then adding more doesn't do any good.  And if you don't have enough, then performance will choke.  1 GB is usually enough up to a 1920x1200 monitor resolution.

Also, you should think of a 2 GB GeForce GTX 550 Ti as being effectively a 1.5 GB card with the other 0.5 GB attached for reasons of marketing rather than engineering.  (Likewise, the 1 GB version should be thought of as a 768 MB card with the other 256 MB attached for marketing reasons.)  Mismatching the memory channels means that it's logically impossible to get the full memory bandwidth if you use over 1.5 GB--and the card might well take a bandwidth hit before that, even.

 So do you think the problem with low fps in large battles could be with my 512mb at 1920x1200 resolution and the card's lack of beefy gpu or would upping my system ram do more?  I'm only running at 4gb atm. I know it's probably a comination of alot of things considering I'm also running an AMD X2 250 @3.2Ghz  CPU as well. However in the last stress test my CPU never got above 70% even in large scale battles.

I can't afford to overhaul the whole thing at the moment and was thinking the video card upgrade would be the thing to start with.

Here's an easy way to tell the difference between a processor bottleneck and a video card one:  set all graphical settings to the hard minimum.  Reduce the monitor resolution to something stupidly low, too.  See how well the game runs.  If that gets you great frame rates, then it's probably a video card issue at the settings you want, and you'll have to turn up settings selectively and see what your system can handle.

If turning all settings to the minimum doesn't get you an adequate frame rate, then it's probably a processor bottleneck.  A processor only at 70% usage doesn't necessarily mean it's not a processor bottleneck.  If it were a purely single threaded program, it would only be able to use one core, so you wouldn't be able to go over 50% processor usage.  I haven't played Guild Wars 2, so I don't know how well threaded it is.

There's also the question of whether your case and power supply can handle a video card upgrade.  What do you have there, anyway?

  doragon86

Advanced Member

Joined: 2/23/09
Posts: 587

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

8/13/12 8:21:54 PM#18
Originally posted by Pretender00

Thanks everyone,

I know what I need to do. I need to just rebuild my whole system. But, we just had a baby and it's hard to justify spending the extra money on myself at the moment. Maybe I should wait till the game launches and see where Arenanet stands on the CPU vs GPU issue. I didn't know why my fps was so crappy when my CPU never maxed out and my system said I had 1.5GB's of ram available even during seige battle. I blamed it on the video card but I guess it's too early to tell since I'm just basing it on Beta play.

I appreciate all the help :)

 

Well, since your CPU never maxed out, you probably have a decent CPU. I recommend getting a graphics card in the 400 series and up. The reason being that the next drivers NVidia is releasing will increase the performance of fermi and keplar GPUs when playing GW2. If you stick with something around the 400 series or 500 series, you won't break the bank too much. 

"For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast,
And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed:
And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill,
And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!"
~Lord George Gordon Byron

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13309

8/13/12 8:25:39 PM#19
Originally posted by Denambren

With that said, if you just want a recommendation for an upgade in general, I'd say find a bit of extra cash and go for the GTX 570 after rebate from here (239$ after rebate):

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130613

Later on when that card gets even cheaper, you can buy a used one and then go SLI.

If you're going to stretch the budget, then you might as well do it right and get a Radeon HD 7870, which is substantially faster for nearly the same price, and with far less power consumption.

And no, when old cards are on clearance, you don't want to sit around hoping that they'll get cheaper in the future.  They'll be gone in the future.

Most cases and power supplies can't handle two GTX 570s in SLI safely.  And that's even if you restrict to cases and power supplies used for gaming systems.  If you've got the budget to spend what it takes to get a case, power supply, and motherboard that can do CrossFire/SLI properly, then you want to grab a higher end card than a GTX 570.

  Amjoco

Elite Member

Joined: 9/15/10
Posts: 3761

8/13/12 8:30:20 PM#20
Originally posted by Pretender00

Thanks everyone,

I know what I need to do. I need to just rebuild my whole system. But, we just had a baby and it's hard to justify spending the extra money on myself at the moment. Maybe I should wait till the game launches and see where Arenanet stands on the CPU vs GPU issue. I didn't know why my fps was so crappy when my CPU never maxed out and my system said I had 1.5GB's of ram available even during seige battle. I blamed it on the video card but I guess it's too early to tell since I'm just basing it on Beta play.

I appreciate all the help :)

 

Reuse diapers and get a GTX 670! lol This is from the stress test the other day. As you can see it is a highly scientific and thought out test I did with my card! hehe

Death is nothing to us, since when we are, Death has not come, and when death has come, we are not.

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