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Guest JetFueler

Graphic card update?

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I have been thinking about putting a new card in my computer but I am a bit hung up on the fact that the system as a whole is pretty out dated. I guess what I would like to know is if putting a better card in will really help much OR if it is just a waste of money that will just reveal another bottle neck in my system. I have a Q6600 quad core NOT over clocked because of cooling concerns with the case. 5 gig ram and currently a BFG 9600 factory OC'ed to I don't even remember what because I got it a few years ago. As is, I can run FSX acceptably and most everything else. Considering the system, I keep pretty modest expectations so I am never really let down by performance and in fact I am usually pleasantly surprised! It just struggles with some aspects of FSX and I know the CPU is a part of it but I think the dated GFX card is just as much a culprit and is much easily (financial so) to improve. I don't have room in the budget for a new system anytime soon so... what do you think? Any recommendations on a replacement card? Something fairly affordable and I would like to stick with nVidia as my last few have served me very well. I definitely don't need to spend a lot of money... I don't want to venture into '10 grand paint job on a pinto' territory. Thanks in advance!

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IanI think that you would be pleasantly surprised with a GTX560 (TI or not), or a 570 if you could afford it and the ultimate 580!Starting with the GTX470/480 (465) nvidia introduced a new archtecture called FERMI they improved on it in the GTX 460 and subsequently in GTX5xx series.It's probably not going to affect performance but there should an increase in quality and benefits if you run a large monitor or 2-3 monitors.Many of the improvements may seem subjective with FSX but I feel that these new cards are quite a step forward over the old 9xxx/8xxx series.One thing to bear in mind you probably need to run the new cards on a 64-bit OS and that way the video card intrudes minimally in the Virtual Address Space, you may get a few FSX OOMs on a 32-bit OS.You should also look at your RAM with the best configurations being 4GB or 8GB (5GB may be unbalanced).RegardsPeterH

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A new card would surely give you a little improvement. Virtually anything but the cheapest cards will be an upgrade from a 9600, but aim for a GTX460 upwards as budget allows. Just keep in mind that with a CPU at 2.4GHz per core, one of the higher end cards is going to be an unbalanced choice for your system. Another option is to go second hand, and put in something like a GTX280, which can be picked up for next to nothing these days. Watch your already poor case temps with these though, as they are pretty effective central heating systems. The best thing you could do for your performance however, would be to spend your cash on a new case with better airflow, or a good CPU cooler, and get that Q6600 overclocked to kingdom come. This will be the cheapest, and most significant improvement to FSX performance that you can make. GPU's do make more of a difference to FSX performance than most people think, but they still take a back seat to raw processing power.

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I have been thinking about putting a new card in my computer but I am a bit hung up on the fact that the system as a whole is pretty out dated. I guess what I would like to know is if putting a better card in will really help much OR if it is just a waste of money that will just reveal another bottle neck in my system. I have a Q6600 quad core NOT over clocked because of cooling concerns with the case. 5 gig ram and currently a BFG 9600 factory OC'ed to I don't even remember what because I got it a few years ago. As is, I can run FSX acceptably and most everything else. Considering the system, I keep pretty modest expectations so I am never really let down by performance and in fact I am usually pleasantly surprised! It just struggles with some aspects of FSX and I know the CPU is a part of it but I think the dated GFX card is just as much a culprit and is much easily (financial so) to improve. I don't have room in the budget for a new system anytime soon so... what do you think? Any recommendations on a replacement card? Something fairly affordable and I would like to stick with nVidia as my last few have served me very well. I definitely don't need to spend a lot of money... I don't want to venture into '10 grand paint job on a pinto' territory. Thanks in advance!
You also want to consider size. Measure the available space available for a graphics card in your case and make sure the card you look to buy will fit

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Thanks for the responses guys! That was exactly the kind of information I was looking for. I had thought about doing the bigger case with better cooling on the grounds that it would allow me to OC the CPU and serve any future full system upgrades as well. Essentially what I run is what was a bare-bones HP model bought from the store as is. I got it because it came with nothing but a keyboard and mouse which I didn't need. It was a Q6600 with 5 gig ram and everything else onboard. I swapped out the power supply , tossed in some new cards to replace the onboard stuff and I had myself a great computer at a bargin price. Of course I didn't buy it for FSX since it wasn't out yet! Thanks again for all the input, I will most definitely be taking it all into consideration!

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