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Old 8th Sep 2010, 18:34   #1
Ramzie
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Radeon 5850 vs. Nvidia 460GTX 1GB: Stupid Upgrade?

Hi guys,

I'm currently running a ASUS Radeon 5850 1GB TOP model video card, which I'm very happy with, but I've been thinking about moving back over to Nvidia. Since Fermi arrived, and based on a review posted right here on bit-tech, the 1GB 460GTX outperforms the 5850 in a number of areas below the 2560x1920 res point (my monitor is 1920x1200 max), and is far better for physics and tessellation. Also, the nvidia cards scale much better in SLI than the Radeon cards do in crossfire. The final point here is price. Two 460GTX 1GB cards are far easier on the wallet than two 5850s.

Now for the question part. Is this a stupid switch? I have a friend who will buy my 5850 for the cost of the 460GTX, so money isn't the issue here. I just am concerned that I'll actually be losing performance by making a stupid upgrade.

tl;dr: Should I swap my Asus 5850 1GB TOP for a Asus 460GTX 1GB TOP?

Thanks,
Ramzie
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 18:41   #2
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GTX 460 SLI, by all means upgrade, but a 5850 is considerably faster in a lot of games than a single GTX 460 1GB, if you were buying new the GTX 460 is fantastic value but to give up the 5850 for it would probably be a slight downgrade.
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 19:18   #3
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Well according to this article on HardOCP the GTX 460 SLI outperforms the 5850 Crossfire, they even have an article showing that the SLI GTX 460s outperforms Crossfire 5870.
If they can be relied upon then those are very impressive results so if money isn't an issue & you definitely want to go for a dual GPU setup, then switch to the GTX 460.
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 19:36   #4
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Overclock 5850 to 5870 levels buy second 5850 repeat process should beat 460 sli in most games assuming

A. You have a decent air flow case
B. A decent 650watt psu
C. The compatible motherboard 8x 8x

Either set up is fast

Ati is quieter under load draws less power and is faster in anything ati specific

Nvidia has better drivers, draws more power / heat but performs better in cuda f@h and nvidia specific games

In the only testilation based game that I could find a review on AVP2

Cf was 3rd fastest setup

Beating 470 and 460 sli setups ( diffrence is small )
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 20:08   #5
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And just add into the mix; Ati release their next gen cards mid to late October....8weeks or so. The first card out of the box is supposed to be in the 150 to 200 price range ... in other words their next gen 460 equivalent.

Now knowing that, I would want to wait and see just what Ati have to offer before junking a 5850 (which can't be doing too badly!) and splashing out on 1 or 2 460's. And if the rumoured 20% bump in performance is true then the 460 is going to look sooooo last year ...which technically , it is ofcourse!
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 21:48   #6
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Fingerbob69 you make a very good point. If AMD has a new gen of Radeons coming out, especially one set to update the 5850's weight class, then I should just wait for that. I think in the end I'd rather stick to a single-card set up versus SLI or CrossFire since, in the end, the single cards do just fine performance wise for me and cost considerably less to acquire/upgrade.

Sticking with the 5850 for now and keeping an eye on the new AMD/nVidia offerings this October. Hope my friend still wants to buy the 5850 then
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 22:49   #7
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The only thing that is actually good about Fermi is SLI performance which is so much better, makes crossfire a joke.

The other things like tesselation doesn't even matter since most games don't feature tesselation and games like Metro 2033 which has tesselation does it with huge hit on performance so neither Nvidia or ATI can give playable settings anyway. The difference is unplayable or even more unplayable, bottom line is that you won't be using tesselation with anything short of GTX 480 SLI. Even worst the difference is really small, it is hard to notice the slightly better shadows and facial features over the huge hit in frame rate. So tesselation shouldn't be a deciding factor in video card purchases.

Physx is probably the biggest marketing scam ever. There are piles of physics enabled games out there, but the number of Nvidia Physx enabled games is like a drop in the ocean. I think theres about 12 games with Physx while a more popular CPU based physics enginel; Havok has 250+ titles and counting. CPU based physics offer the same realism and doesn't drop your frame rates at all because processors these days have 4 cores and multiple threads per core.

I don't hate Nvidia, I just hate soul less marketers. The GTX 460 is a great card if you haven't already purchased the 5850. It just isn't worth the upgrade if you want tesselation and Physx. You will be missing out on the money more than those two insignificant features. Arguably you might not even need to replace the 5850 at all until the next next generation of cards since the ATI 6000 series is only a refresh.
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 23:23   #8
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As much as I'm a green team fan, I'd say stick with the 5850, unless you are folding quite alot as well as gaming, then I'd say go for the 460's.
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 16:07   #9
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Thanks for the advice all. I'm going to stick with my 5850.

I think instead of wasting money here I'll just wait till the next gen of Radeon cards come out and maybe save up instead for a SSD or possibly upgrade from a P6T Deluxe v2 to a P6X58D Premium mobo (hooray SATA 6GBs and USB 3.0!)

Again, thanks all for the feedback.
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 21:44   #10
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Bar stalker or massive resolutions the 2 cards are pretty much the same performance wise
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 21:56   #11
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have both, use the nvidia for physx
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 23:05   #12
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Originally Posted by RichCreedy View Post
have both, use the nvidia for physx
No. Just... No.
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 23:53   #13
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All you need for physX is a 240 and driver number 257.15(beta) ...max!
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Old 10th Sep 2010, 10:36   #14
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Quote from the bit-tech Mafia 2 Physx Performance article:

"The question is, is it worth shelling out for an extra PhysX card to play Mafia 2? PhysX effects remain a purely visual addition to a game and while Mafia 2 makes better use of it than we've seen previously from titles like Batman: Arkham Asylum, is it worth the cost of the additional hardware just to run one game with the shiny turned on? From what we've seen, it's certainly worth using an ageing 8-series of GTX 2xx series card for PhysX if you already have one, but so far as buying a card expressly for PhysX or running an ATI/Nvidia Hybrid setup goes it might be that Mafia 2 is one game and you can live with turning PhysX off."
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