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Best Video Cards For Fsx In Q1 2009?

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Hi All To get this new video card forum going I thought I would summarise the generally held views around here about what video cards are currently the best choice for FSX. First off it is not possible to have this discussion about video cards for FSX in isolation without also talking about the CPU, the RAM, the Motherboard, the

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Very interesting topic, since I am looking for a new computer! The 55nm GTX260 is not out yet, is it...? I do believe there is also a 65nm GTX260, als with Core 216? nVidia is making a bit of a mess off it all with all these minor variations...I am planning to buy the i7 920 CPU. And I also agree that for FS a seperate videocard forum isn't logical... I do wonder which videocard fits best with that i7 920. I guess any top range card would be fine, even though the fastest ones might be sleeping most of the time. First I wanted to get the HD4870X2 but then I read CF/SLI is useless with FSX and the I read ATI isn't the best choice for FSX, so... the GTX280 might be better. But getting the GTX280 is a bit too much with the 920, although I of course also do other things with my computer. I think I like a single GPU card more because I hear to much bad things about CF/SLI.There are SO MUCH things you have to think of...! It's driving me nuts. Almost.BTW I am going for Vista 64bit this time and 3 x 2GB RAM (Corsair 3x2GB DDR3 SDRAM PC10666 CL9.0 XMS3, althought that may be the Hwrong one for overclocking). Haha, it's hard (to impossible) to ONLY talk about videocards when it comes to FSX... :(

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Anything beyond an 8800GT hasn't proven to provide any advantage in FS. The 9800GTX+ is a good incarnation of the old 88 series. It's a dual slot card that exhausts hot air out the back of the case. It runs at a higher clock and I thought this might finally help performance . . . beyond the trial 8800GT, then GTX260 it replaced. Even at 800Mhz, there was no difference at all. I just finally kept the 9800GTX+. It's running fine, and identically to the original 8800GT. All flying done at 1920x1080 on a 40"-er. Really just got tired of swapping cards in and out all the time for no benefit. FS needs at least an 8800GT, but any more card than this will not increase performance . . . at least my little science project has indicated.

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Okay, well, then I wonder what the step from a E6600 to a i7 920 will do for me... I suppose that will make the biggest difference in my case: I now have a E6600 with a 8800GTX.I am going to buy a reasonable videocard anyway (at LEAST a GTX260), because I do more than flying on my PC.

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For FS, the 260 won't help. However going from a dual core to a quad core, at a higher clock yet, Will help. But how much? Clock for clock, it appears (generously!) the i7 is providing a ~ 20% performance increase over the core2 design. So, on an equally clocked basis an i7 might be comparable to a core2 quad, + 20%. The 920s are going to 3.6Ghz pretty easily. This might provide an i7@3.6Ghz a 20% performance increase over a Q6600@3.6Ghz. An i7 at 3.6Ghz = a core2Quad at 4.2Ghz. The more expensive mobos and ram and significantly increases the 920 CPU's nominal $275 price tag. However if a user is coming from a P4, it's tempting. Coming from an E6600 for FS9? No way. But for FSX, a quad would have been the choice back then, now it's a tough call.

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The 55nm GTX260 is not out yet, is it...? I do believe there is also a 65nm GTX260, als with Core 216? nVidia is making a bit of a mess off it all with all these minor variations...
There are in fact 3 versions of the GTX260, just in case you were not confused enough! The original 65nm GTX260 Core192, the 65nm GTX260 Core216 and now the new 55nm GTX260 Core216. EVGA has the first 55nm version on sale - you should be able to find it online as we speak? If you are going with the GTX260 then do get the newest 55nm version, it is well worth it.Konrad

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For FS, the 260 won't help. However going from a dual core to a quad core, at a higher clock yet, Will help. But how much? Clock for clock, it appears (generously!) the i7 is providing a ~ 20% performance increase over the core2 design. So, on an equally clocked basis an i7 might be comparable to a core2 quad, + 20%. The 920s are going to 3.6Ghz pretty easily. This might provide an i7@3.6Ghz a 20% performance increase over a Q6600@3.6Ghz. An i7 at 3.6Ghz = a core2Quad at 4.2Ghz. The more expensive mobos and ram and significantly increases the 920 CPU's nominal $275 price tag. However if a user is coming from a P4, it's tempting. Coming from an E6600 for FS9? No way. But for FSX, a quad would have been the choice back then, now it's a tough call.
I am using FSX. I have to get a new videocard anyway, so even though a GTX260 won't make any difference compared to a 8800GT I will still get a GTX260 (or something similar) because I do play other games too, and they most certainly will benefit from it. :( Anyway, coming from an old dual core I think I am in for some improvement with the i7 920, which I indeed want to OC, giving me even more improvement. I won't expect heaven (all slider to the right!) but I do expect some smoother flying with some more options on.

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Very interesting topic, since I am looking for a new computer! The 55nm GTX260 is not out yet, is it...? I do believe there is also a 65nm GTX260, als with Core 216? nVidia is making a bit of a mess off it all with all these minor variations...I am planning to buy the i7 920 CPU. And I also agree that for FS a seperate videocard forum isn't logical... I do wonder which videocard fits best with that i7 920. I guess any top range card would be fine, even though the fastest ones might be sleeping most of the time. First I wanted to get the HD4870X2 but then I read CF/SLI is useless with FSX and the I read ATI isn't the best choice for FSX, so... the GTX280 might be better. But getting the GTX280 is a bit too much with the 920, although I of course also do other things with my computer. I think I like a single GPU card more because I hear to much bad things about CF/SLI.There are SO MUCH things you have to think of...! It's driving me nuts. Almost.BTW I am going for Vista 64bit this time and 3 x 2GB RAM (Corsair 3x2GB DDR3 SDRAM PC10666 CL9.0 XMS3, althought that may be the Hwrong one for overclocking). Haha, it's hard (to impossible) to ONLY talk about videocards when it comes to FSX... :(
I just posted a lengthy post about this in anohter thread but I will tell you what not to get with the i7 920. I already had a 9600GT. Busted my budget with the new i7 920...new M/B...6 gig DDR3 1600 MEM...so on and on...you get the picture. Have been very happy with my new rig since I was coming off an P4 3ghz. I am using the FTX scenery with great results. At their YMML airport I could only get mid to upper teens at the airport and once airborne would go back to 30 locked at 30 and very smooth....mostly smooth at airport also but still low FPS......it is a complex piece of scenery though. Had not used memstatus since building my new rig. Did it at YMML...and several other large airports yesterday. At FTX's YMML the GPU is saturated. One hounded percent usage....and gets close to that at Seattle default. Never thought I would see that in FSX. Also at YMML when panning around and I come into view of lights I would have the black box...just for a second....also if switching views from VC to outside sometime the VC would be gray and take a few seconds to color in and the same with outside the skin of the aircraft would do the same thing. I only fly GA so am not at large airports much. At smaller airfields this does not happen. At first I attributed it to my CPU but my CPU usage is not that much and then I thought HDD access but that is not happening when this goes on....so I am thinking my video card cannot handle what the 920 is pushing to it. Time will tell as I plan on getting the 260. My 920 is clocked to 3.5ghz and my mem is running at DDR3 1600 8 8 8 24 1T. I am on XP and it does see 4 gig of the six installed and the tripple channle is working. It does drive one nuts!! Regards

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Very interesting topic, since I am looking for a new computer! The 55nm GTX260 is not out yet, is it...? I do believe there is also a 65nm GTX260, als with Core 216? nVidia is making a bit of a mess off it all with all these minor variations...I am planning to buy the i7 920 CPU. And I also agree that for FS a seperate videocard forum isn't logical... I do wonder which videocard fits best with that i7 920. I guess any top range card would be fine, even though the fastest ones might be sleeping most of the time. First I wanted to get the HD4870X2 but then I read CF/SLI is useless with FSX and the I read ATI isn't the best choice for FSX, so... the GTX280 might be better. But getting the GTX280 is a bit too much with the 920, although I of course also do other things with my computer. I think I like a single GPU card more because I hear to much bad things about CF/SLI.There are SO MUCH things you have to think of...! It's driving me nuts. Almost.BTW I am going for Vista 64bit this time and 3 x 2GB RAM (Corsair 3x2GB DDR3 SDRAM PC10666 CL9.0 XMS3, althought that may be the Hwrong one for overclocking). Haha, it's hard (to impossible) to ONLY talk about videocards when it comes to FSX... :(
A GTX 280 is not to much for an i7 920. Head over to HardOCP.com and read up on the Core i7s. Higher-end cards, if I remember correctly, can actually bottleneck an i7 in some cases. The i7 series really starts to come into it's own with SLI and Tri-SLI configurations. The i7 series scales extremely well with SLI and above. Since you play other games (I am guessing some of the newer titles), I would personally ignore the 512mb and other lower end videocards. They just won't perform very well with some of the newer titles at higher settings (if that is what you play) and higher resolutions (again, if that is what you play). Stay away from the 4870X2 if Flightsim is your main game. They do not do as well in FSX as their Nvidia couterpart.It also depends on the resolution you will be running at. If you are going to be running a resolution lower than 1920x1200, I would stick with the GTX 260. The GTX 280 and 4870X2 shine at 1920x1200 and above, if you aren't heading up into that range I would probably stray away from the GTX 280/4870X2 classes. You can also SLI the GTX 260 for pretty cheap (relatively speaking) later if you want so it is a pretty darn good value. Hope this helps. :(

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