8800gt for 1280x1024 256mb or 512mb?

dirtychavez

Limp Gawd
Joined
May 19, 2007
Messages
186
I would say, depends on the game, and of course the resolution as you posted. Whats the price difference between the two? Do you plan to upgrade your monitor anytime?
 

Chombo

2[H]4U
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Jan 10, 2008
Messages
3,320
Well at the 8800GT 256mb price you could probably find a 3850 with 512mb. So thats another option.
 

wahoyaho

Gawd
Joined
Jan 20, 2005
Messages
514
So....

8800gt 512 at around 250
hd3870 512 at around 225
hd3850 512 at around 195
8800gt 256 at around 190
8800gts 320 at around 190
hd3850 256 at around 170

damn so many choices, I need help people!

And nah, I don't plan on getting a new monitor anytime soon so it'll be 1280x1024 for a while, or at least until the next time I decide to upgrade

I play some new games but I don't really need to max out every detail to enjoy it. I'll be happy with medium.
 

Hagrid

[H]F Junkie
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Nov 23, 2006
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8,904
I vote for the 512mb. 256mb is just too small from what ive read for some of the games.
 

J3RK

[H]F Junkie
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Jun 25, 2004
Messages
9,495
The 3870 is at a pretty good position in your list.

I run a 3850 in my living-room PC at 1366x768, and it plays UT3 maxed at very nice speeds. I've picked up a lot of cards for various things lately, so I can't remember if it's a 512 or a 256, but it's fast, and was quite cheap.

I run 8800GT 512s as well, and they're great. As far as the difference if they had half the RAM I'm not sure. Probably best to check some reviews. I run them at 1680x1050, and they fly. I'm willing to bet that 256 would be enough for most games at 1280x1024.
 

dirtychavez

Limp Gawd
Joined
May 19, 2007
Messages
186
So....

8800gt 512 at around 250
hd3870 512 at around 225
hd3850 512 at around 195
8800gt 256 at around 190
8800gts 320 at around 190
hd3850 256 at around 170

damn so many choices, I need help people!

And nah, I don't plan on getting a new monitor anytime soon so it'll be 1280x1024 for a while, or at least until the next time I decide to upgrade

I play some new games but I don't really need to max out every detail to enjoy it. I'll be happy with medium.

I say the 3870 or 8800gt if its in your budget.
 

Chombo

2[H]4U
Joined
Jan 10, 2008
Messages
3,320
The big question is which games are you playing? If the answer starts with a C and ends with a rysis then your choices get narrowed down a lot.
 

deviantek

Weaksauce
Joined
Jan 2, 2008
Messages
98
go with the 512 if you want a bit more future proofing. Always nice to be a step above to ensure that if you decide to move up from that tiny craptastic resolution.
 

wahoyaho

Gawd
Joined
Jan 20, 2005
Messages
514
When it gets to the point where running games in 1280x1024 (~med quality) will make a big difference between 256 and 512, would the 512 have a good frame rate?

Most of the reviews I've seen where the 256 shows it's faults (like ~30%+ difference from the 512), the frame rates on the 512 is also kind of low like sub 30s, which is almost borderline unplayable.
 

J3RK

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jun 25, 2004
Messages
9,495
The CPU and the GPU are going to limit how useful extra memory is as well. (take the 8800 GT 1GB model for example) No performance increase over the 512. There are plenty of factors, but I think it would be a good idea to balance everything (GPU, CPU, RAM, VidRAM, etc.) I haven't read any comparisons of 256 vs 512 on the 3850, but I would imagine it makes less of a difference than it would on the 8800. Like I said though, even though it's at the bottom of the list it performs great in most games. Some maxed, some tweaked a bit, etc. (but I haven't seen one run badly on it yet, and that includes Crysis with a tweaked config (equivalent to a mixture of medium and high at 1680.) Anyway, every card on the list will work perfectly for what you asked. The question is how long are you going to keep it that way. (and I suppose whether the rest of the system can keep up with the ones that are higher on the list.)

Edit: just a couple of semi-random reference points, a single 8800GT runs STALKER at 1680 with every setting maxed out, and rarely appears to drop below sync. I haven't done any definitive tests, but my eyes are very sensitive to meeting or not meeting the refresh rate.

Bioshock ran very smoothly (not quite synced, but up there,) with DX9 setting maxed on the 3850. Though the settings were lower than on my 8800 based systems, it actually appeared smoother for some reason. Tons of factors at play here beyond the obvious differences, but I thought it was impressive anyway.

Oblivion is starting to age a bit, but it's silky on all the above (though I don't own a 3870.

Hellgate runs great on all of them.

I only run at 1680 because I can't stand to be out of native modes, and I don't accept much compromise in detail settings either. (though I do usually lower AF to 4x, and I don't use AA.

Like I said, random bits, but maybe they help a bit. (typing this from the couch, and it's kinda hard to see, so I won't go much more in-depth.
 
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