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#410097 - 02/07/15 06:21 PM /any PC gamers out there?
MatManhasgone Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/06/14
Posts: 1096
Loc: Lost in the great wide yonder
I've got a $200 gift card for a local computer shop and thought that I would buy a better video card for an i5 PC that I have left over and convert it into a games box.

Looking at my options, I think I'd get a better bang for the buck going with AMD Radion R9 than Nvidea. I have three options that I have seen.

1. Saphire R9-270X 2G - $219
2. Gigabite R9-285 2G - $269 (-20 mail in rebate)
3. Visiontek R9-280X 3G - $279

I know that I will need to add a bit of money into the pot to get something worthwhile, but I am thinking that the option 2 is the better choice, but thought is wise to ask first.

right now the PC has an AMD 5650 in the box, so it really has no chance of playing games with that card.


Edited by oakvillematt (02/07/15 06:26 PM)
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#410098 - 02/07/15 06:45 PM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 6290
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
I converted one of my development systems into a gaming box for my nephew a few months ago -- same choices, ended up going with the 280X.

My thinking was that the extra VRAM on the 280X (3GB vs 2GB) would do him more good over time (after the inevitable newer bigger screen) than the newer chip tech in the 285.

It's really a coin toss though...

Check for game offers (I'll go see what is supposed to be on offer)... when I bought mine I had to pretty much yell and stomp to get the free game coupon, two staffers in a row told me the offer was finished and they only backed down when I told them I worked for AMD and showed them my badge.

EDIT... Hmm, looks like the "Never Settle Space Edition" bundle offer expired Jan 31. Usually expiring bundles get replaced with new bundles, hold on...

EDIT... Guess it's only a couple of days after the last promotion expired, will ask around on Monday and see what I find.


Edited by bridgman (02/07/15 07:00 PM)
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M5HP, M40ti, Sierra-1
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#410099 - 02/07/15 07:12 PM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 6290
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
Forgot to ask, for option #2 is the $269 before or after the rebate, ie is it 269 or 249 ?

If the latter that pushes option #2 into the lead for value, I guess.
_________________________
M60ti, VP180, QS8, M2ti, EP500, PC-Plus 20-39
M5HP, M40ti, Sierra-1
LFR1100 active, ADA1500-4 and -8

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#410110 - 02/07/15 10:57 PM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
MatManhasgone Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/06/14
Posts: 1096
Loc: Lost in the great wide yonder
I have done some more reading up about the chips and cards. It never is an easy thing.

I have ruled option 1 off the table as the 280 series of cards are just that much better.

The Gigabite R9-285 card costs $269 and you can send in for a $20 rebate coupon to get some money back if they actually send you the rebate, and you jump through the hoops.

On the flip side, The orginal R9-280 card that I can get for $229 technically is a faster card, with more bandwidth and 3tb of ram, but is older then the 285. From reading many reviews, they talk about how the newer 285 card is really a crippled 290 card with less memory and some other parts taken out. The end result is that it runs about on par with the R9-280 with some games playing faster, and other games playing slower. but on average it's +/- 2% at best.

It gets into that slippery slope when it comes to that small upgrade. A week or so ago I was thinking of the R9-270X as it was on sale for $199 but that sale ended, so now for that $10 more you can get the better R9-280 card.

Yes, it would be nice to get some free games. Reading the offer, it was a limiting one in that only certain qualified stores were offering the promtion and it was until they ran out of games, so it might have ended before christmas.

Then there is the question of the PSU. I have a Silver 650W unit, and the 280 series calls for a minimum of 700w. But they don't spec the processor, or very much else, and that can make a difference of a 100+ watts on the board.

I will admit that I am really not that much of a gamer and it's more that since moving over to an iMac, the i5 PC has just sat there and not really done much. Figured it could be useful for something.
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Anthem: AVM60
Axiom: ADA1000, LFR1100, VP180, QS8, EP500, M3, M3comp
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#410111 - 02/07/15 11:42 PM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 6290
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
The 285 (Tonga die) is definitely not a crippled 290 (Hawaii die), although it is essentially a replacement for 280 which brings in some Hawaii features like the ability to draw 4 triangles per clock plus some new features we haven't shipped in any GPU/card so far.

There are three generations of what we call GCN (Graphics Core Next) - Southern Islands (SI), Sea Islands (CI) and Volcanic Islands (VI). The 270 and 280 are tweaked SI (fab process & power management improvements), 260 and 290 are CI along with Kaveri, Kabini and Beema/Mullins APUs, and 285 is VI.

During the Hawaii launch the 290 was described as VI but that's "marketing VI" not "engineering VI" smile

VI adds a new instruction set for the shader core (the 1792 or 2048-wide processor core) and improved colour compression - it's colour compression that allows a 2GB / 256 bit memory bus card to perform like a 3GB / 384 bit memory bus 280 or faster.

I'm leaning more and more towards the 285 for you unless you think your next purchase is likely to be a really high res display, greater than 1920x1080, or running a multi-screen gaming system, in which case the 280 or 280X might end up being worth the extra $$ because the 3GB RAM will help a bit at higher resolutions.

I do think the 280X should be OK with your 650W power supply but I don't have any direct experience since I just happen to stick 750W supplies in all my systems and all our boxes at work tend to be configured the same way. Not only CPU makes a difference but hard disks -- I suspect the 700W rating assumes a couple of hard disks, a floppy, an optical or two etc... but again I'm not 100% sure.


Edited by bridgman (02/08/15 12:00 AM)
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M60ti, VP180, QS8, M2ti, EP500, PC-Plus 20-39
M5HP, M40ti, Sierra-1
LFR1100 active, ADA1500-4 and -8

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#410125 - 02/08/15 07:27 AM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: bridgman]
Adelin Offline
old hand

Registered: 07/26/11
Posts: 73
Hello,

Take a look about card lenght, before buying is the only good information i can give you so far wink

Just switching from 2 fans to three fans cooling system on gpu is not for every pc cases.

Quick looking at your GPU list and it's just a biased opinion:

270x is good.

I have a 7870 2GB, a 280X or 285X is more appealing for someone like me who had a graphical card almost similar to a 270X.

7870 for 104e wasa good deal but 270X is a bit expensive thinking about next gens games, those 2 cards will be a bit out dated anyway.


My current computer:
i5 4670K, a Z87 motherboard,a gs 600 corsair powersuply, 4GB of DDR3 pc 12800 (1600mhz), and a hd 7870 ghz 2GB oc.

Jump was very big from a hd 5570 gddr5 256mb graphic card to a 7870 (7870 oc by factory)

7870 for a 104€ tag price was from sales on last stock of those graphic cards. (117 us $ february 8 2015)

Something similar to a 270X / 7870 give smooth experience at 1600x1200 4:3 in games up to 16:9 hd 1920 X 1080 i never tryed.

I just regreat not buying the 7950 3GB for 10 € more.
or a 280/285X if i had the money at this time.
Heavy graphical mods in Skyrim require a bit more graphical memory.


There is a situation about cpu bound games:
A I5 4670K if not oc up to 4GHZ is not capable of running train simulator 2015 over 20-30 fps with hd 7870 or other graphic cards on max settings playing some maps.



Performance 1600x1200 @85 hz is good for games like battlefield 3 with little frame rate drops not noticed so far.
Streaming require maybe a 7950, not sure.

exemple of game Played:
Guildwars 2
Gta 4, mafia 2, flight simulator X, sleeping dogs saint row 4, Crysis 2, borderland serie, Skyrim AC serie till 3, farcry 1,2,3 witcher 1,2 deadspace serien mass effect 1,2 and more...

I had no crash with those games.
Just crysis 2 require a good case ventilation at max setting.


Little story so far:

I had a 19" 4:3 crt: 1600x1200 @ 85 hz, a flatron F900P.
It died recently.
Now i'm playing on an old 16" crt 1024x768.

I had no luck with motherboards and i had to change components.
I had two powersupply.
one with power capacitors that blown,
Next i bought was on fire two years later.
My current low end gs 600 is a breath and work good.

I started with a xp 2000+ computer and tnt2 graphic processor.

next: athlon 2 x2 6000+ , integrated graphic, a am2+ platform. was average to good with old games.

I had to repair the motherboard, i was out of waranty.
Instead i went to a am3+ motherboard + athlon x2 265+ processor.

first i played with the integrated gaphics then i bought a hd 5570.
It was not a monster in term of performance but i could enjoy old games for the price.
I had a problem with the pci express slot of the motherboard, and this time i got a refund directly from my seller.

I kept the hd 5570, bought my current config
and switched to a hd 7870 later.

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#410139 - 02/08/15 04:00 PM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
MatManhasgone Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/06/14
Posts: 1096
Loc: Lost in the great wide yonder
Right now my monitor is a 1920x1080 display. But the ultimate goal is to move this machine to the media room that will likely be getting a 4k TV and play the games in 60"+ big monitor mode.

Now as said.. I am not an avid gamer, and do like to play the games that I like when I get the chance. I am still very much enjoying playing games from my Xbox360 circa 2009 so if I get some new titles, I will likely be playing them for the next 10 years to come. So buying hardware for the next generation is not that important.

However, it would be nice to get something that has enough umph behind it to work well.
_________________________
Anthem: AVM60
Axiom: ADA1000, LFR1100, VP180, QS8, EP500, M3, M3comp
AudioSource: Amp One/A

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#410149 - 02/09/15 11:25 AM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
Adelin Offline
old hand

Registered: 07/26/11
Posts: 73
looking at forums with a search engine:

For highest settings / high setting a r9 280, is good and less expensive than a r9 280X.

1920x1080 off course.


If going to a 4K display, 3840 x 2160, it is really a high resolution.

Testing 280X and gtx 770 at 4K on farcry 3.

First article looking on the web i see:
Review: AMD Radeon R9 280X vs. Nvidia GeForce GTX 770 at 4K
HEXUS / Tarinder Sandhu

http://hexus.net/tech/reviews/graphics/61201-amd-radeon-r9-280x-vs-nvidia-geforce-gtx-770-4k/

If you wait till summer maybe you will find (r9 370 380 and 390 series)

and price drop for older cards.



Edited by Adelin (02/09/15 11:27 AM)
Edit Reason: url

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#410150 - 02/09/15 01:44 PM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
MatManhasgone Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/06/14
Posts: 1096
Loc: Lost in the great wide yonder
The other down part that is not thought about is that the Canadian Dollar is dropping like a rock right now, so that has had the effect of driving up the prices of everything to cover the price difference between the CAD and USD.

I ended up just making a blind leap and getting the R9 280 card over the R9 285 as it was $40 cheeper, didn't have to worry about the hassle of a mail in rebate that never seem to come.

The retailer did have some of the Game code cards left but they don't work with AMD's web site to download as they say it's based on the registration date and not the purchase date. I am sitting on hold with AMD to see if they will budge on that. Otherwise it comes back to waiting for a few days and just buying a Nvidea card instead.
_________________________
Anthem: AVM60
Axiom: ADA1000, LFR1100, VP180, QS8, EP500, M3, M3comp
AudioSource: Amp One/A

Top
#410726 - 03/10/15 05:05 PM Re: /any PC gamers out there? [Re: MatManhasgone]
MatManhasgone Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/06/14
Posts: 1096
Loc: Lost in the great wide yonder
Rather than start a new thread, I figure just simpler to continue my PC gaming questions here.

I have the PC setup with the video card and it all seems to be working quite well. Now comes the sound part of the equation. I can hook up the sound output through the amp and it does give me big sound. But I would like to play a bit more silent for the family sake. So a set of headphones would be great. Rather than loose my 360 sound field, does anyone have a recommendation for a USB 7.1 headset?

I can get a Corsair Vengance for about $50 or there is the Razer Kraken for $69

Are these usb headphones just a waste of time?
_________________________
Anthem: AVM60
Axiom: ADA1000, LFR1100, VP180, QS8, EP500, M3, M3comp
AudioSource: Amp One/A

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