The main 6 mistakes when buying a video card or how to choose a video card.

I want to devote this material to choosing a video card, since I often hear stories from people who buy a slow video card, thinking that they take a fast model based on the words of sales assistants or their own guesses I want to devote this material to choosing a video card, since I often hear stories from people who buy a slow video card, thinking that they take a fast model based on the words of sales assistants or their own guesses.

In general, when choosing a video card, people make the same mistakes, from which the main 6 can be distinguished. Next, I will list what mistakes we are talking about:

1 mistake. When buying a video card, the main parameter was the amount of video memory. The more the merrier, so many video card buyers think so. Large memory is nice, but if this parameter is not the main one. The operation of a video card is based on many other factors, such as the model of a GPU chip, the frequency of a GPU / memory, the width of the memory bus, etc.

A good example of this: if you compare the 8600GT with 512 MB of memory with 8800GT with 256 MB of memory. The memory capacity of the first card is larger, but any other card parameter is inferior in performance to the second one and as a result, of course, the second one will work faster.

Also keep in mind that you will not need additional memory if you do not play at very high resolutions, such as 1920 × 1080 or higher.

2 mistake. Purchase a low-quality model of a new generation, instead of a model of the previous generation of higher quality The basis of such actions is if the video card is new, it should be faster!

In most cases, of course this is true, but not always. Since stores tend to lower prices for older generations and get rid of the old stock of goods, providing the possibility of buying a new one. Thus, it happens that if you compare video cards of the same price category, but a different generation turns out that the older card wins in performance.

The main mistake that many people make is that when choosing a card, its digital code is not correctly decoded. Many people think that the 4xxx card from AMD-ATI is automatically faster than the 3xxx model, but that’s not the case with the Radeon 3870, it will do the Radeon 4350 and will be faster than the Radeon 4650.

Let me give you an example of deciphering the number of AMD-AMD-ATI video card on model 4850 as an example.

In number 4850, the first number refers to the card generation. A higher number there means that the video card is based on a more recent generation, which always introduces improvements over the previous generation. The second number refers to the range of that map. Here, higher is better. In the case of AMD-ATI, for the 4xxx series, you can decipher like this:

  • 3: Lower level
  • 6: Mid-range
  • 8: High efficiency

The last two numbers indicate the place of the model, within the hierarchy of that range of video cards (figure 8); within a generation (figure 4). In the vast majority of cases, a higher number means a higher performance, but AMD-ATI and Nvidia have deceived people in the past with GS / SE abbreviations. (SE does not mean special edition).

Now AMD-ATI really does not use the suffix in new models, and Nvidia still continues to do this. Here's a quick link from the slowest to the fastest, if you compare two identical models. GS

The main thing to keep in mind is that many of the cards from the older generation are of higher quality and often faster than some of the newer models, so in this case google and compare prices!

3 mistake. Not considering the capacity of the system unit and the power supply unit.

Suppose you managed to avoid the first two errors, and intend to buy the GeForce GTX280, and play the latest games, but in the end it turns out that this card does not fit into your system unit. This happens when you have a small HTPC format system.

Before choosing a video card, measure the space available for it in your case (usually from the back of the case to the hard disk), and when buying, check the length of the card, which is usually located on the box. Check the reviews on the Internet and / or contact the store if you are unsure. Farther.

You bought a big card, it fits in your system unit, everything is fine, but now the following problems may arise:

  • Your video card needs additional power, the connector for which, you do not have
  • Your computer will stop booting.
  • Your computer boots, but there are artifacts in the games.

Most likely, your power supply can not provide the necessary power for the tasks of your new video card. This is the most likely version, but I do not advise you to run directly to the store and buy a new power supply, it is better to double-check everything again

4 mistake. Installing a powerful video card in a system with a slow CPU.

For example, you have a new Radeon 4870X2, willows are ready to dominate the virtual world. Only what you see on the monitor is not at all like the descriptions that were read in the reviews. This is due to the fact that such a powerful video card processor cannot equivalently interact with a slow central processor, for example, the Intel E4300. Your CPU will be a bottleneck of the system, it will lag behind the video card, and therefore its performance will be reduced.

Try to balance the speeds of the processor with your video card. If you have for example an average video card (9800 GTX, 4850), the best option would be to combine it with an average central processor (E7400 or equivalent).

5 mistake. Buying a video card is much higher than the requirements for the games you play.

For example, if you play, CS 1.6, WoW or other games, the production date of which is more than 2 years or more, you hardly need the latest and most powerful video card.

If you are playing on a 17 or 19 inch monitor, you probably do not need the latest and most powerful video card.

It's just like someone who buys a “Mustang” to drive to work, simply because he wants a lot of horsepower, and you could get by with the “King” for example. You will be wasting a lot of money on buying, energy consumption and upgrading the rest of the computer (CPU and power supply, etc.).

Many may not agree with this, and they will say that it is good to have a reserve of power for future games. I do not think so. Why? Because by the time a new game comes out, your video card will still be able to work with it, perhaps with lower settings, and video cards that can provide higher performance for the same price will most likely be missing for this of time.

I think that it is better to improve the characteristics of the system in the low price category, rather than buying every time, one of the most expensive video cards. I want to mention that higher quality cards tend to depreciate faster than average video cards. Just like higher cars.

But still, if you still need the fastest and most powerful video card, be prepared to pay a lot of money.

6 mistake. Taking into account the recommendations of only one person.

The last but no less frequent mistake made when buying a video card is to listen to the opinion of only one person. What is wrong here?

  • this person may be a fan of Nvidia or AMD-ATI and will recommend a lower product from simply because he prefers this company.
  • there is not enough experience. Not everyone has extensive knowledge of video cards.
  • Information of that person may be outdated. In the end, new video cards are released on a regular basis (every few months, or even less)

Always check the opinions of many trusted people, ask here and there on the forums, contact me, read many reviews and comparisons. The same applies to me, my opinion can not be final.

Buying a video card on the market with such a variety can get confused without any problems, so do not forget to avoid the mistakes listed above, ask for advice, read reviews, etc., this is the only way you can shop around and buy exactly what you need.

Discuss on the forum.

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