Current Top 5 Graphics Cards

By on September 30, 2010

The best graphics cards of 2010.

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First Impressions
My reaction is

Nvidia GTX 480


The GTX 480 is Nvidia’s current flagship card, which lives up to their claims as the most powerful single GPU based graphics card in the world. Sure it’s expensive, coming in at an MSRP of $499 at which price point some might be tempted to just go with the ATI HD 5970, but that card actually retails for a whole lot more than what it’s worth.

Clock for clock, this is still the card to beat, and considering Nvidia’s new roadmap for their upcoming GPUs, this will be their highest end card till Q2 of 2011.

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About

From auditing to editing, I now test and analyze the latest gadgets and games instead of the latest financial statements. Both jobs are equally intense and rewarding. When I'm not burning up hardware in the name of science, you'll find me nuking in DOTA 2 or engineering in TF2.

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Comments
  • Joe

    Author clearly has no idea about hardware

    In fact, a pair of GTX 460s in SLI perform much better than ATI’s HD 5870,

    Lemme guess you looked at one hardcop article that did everything to favor the GTX460's comparing them to 5870's with broken crossfire drivers and took that as fact.

    Sorry but you fail and this article fails.

    • phil

      shut up

    • th

      Relax. Read.

      I said a pair of GTX 460 in SLi outperforms an ATI HD 5870. At no point have I stated the GTX 460 in SLI is better than HD 5870 in CrossFire.

  • http://www.facebook.com/clinton.weyand Clinton Weyand

    Only Nvidia 400 series can Physx APEX, not to mention better tessellation as shown in the Heaven Benchmarks for Radeon and Nvidia comparison.

    Putting the HD 5970 ahead of the GTX480, despite 5970's higher frame rates on OLDER games (i.e. Crysis), only means you're not looking at the whole picture. Especially since you don't even mention Physx APEX nor tessellation.

    I'm not going to say the author failed, but I believe he is bias.

    • th

      I agree about the APEX PhysX performance on Nvidia cards, but how many games are there on the market that properly use this? Mafia II and…?

      Also agreed about the tessellation on Nvidia trouncing ATI cards, but then again, how many games have proper tessellation implemented? Metro 2033 is a great example of this, but that game can bring any card down to it's knees, and one game alone doesn't justify a higher ranking if all the other "older" games show the HD 5970 ahead of the GTX 480.

      • http://www.facebook.com/clinton.weyand Clinton Weyand

        True… for now.

  • Deek

    I would honestly love to know where the author obtained his data. In every benchmark and test I've seen, the ATI 5850 out performs the NVidia GTX 470.

  • http://twitter.com/RubenCalle @RubenCalle

    I see nobody writing anything about the aditional costs of installing these cards. Like a new PSU (Power Supply Unit), aditional RAM and maybe if not always a new CASE with extra vents.
    These Cards drop too much heat inside the CPU that you could damage any other part of your computer for this, Memories, Hard Drives or the Mainboard Itself.
    An appropiated PSU can cost U.S.$120 dollars. For the case that could be arounf $150. So when you come to buy that new Video Card. Think again. You WILL need MORE MONEY.

    Also The author never mentioned the GTX 465 wich in my opinion should be on top the GTX 460.

    • http://www.facebook.com/clinton.weyand Clinton Weyand

      I'm going to go out on a limb here and ask, "You don't install your own graphics cards and RAM?"
      Well, you should… it's free when you do it by yourself. And it's super easy, even if you've never done it before.

      As for a new case with extra vents, one might only need to do that if they bought a prefab PC from the local store. However, a front, a side, and a back fan should be plenty for most large cases (it's the M-ATX cases that you have to worry about). And if you're still having overheating problems, just get a higher RPM fan. It might be noisier, but it's cheaper and it'll work just fine. (BTW, mine has a top, bottom, front, back, and a 10-inch side… BTW, I built my own computer, so I hand picked my case and I only paid $80 for it.)

      As for a Power Supply, 600W is the recommended minimum on listed nVidia.com for the GTX480. However, like RAM, more [Watts] never hurts.

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