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Windows 7: Debating between two cards...

18 Aug 2010   #1
Darician

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 
Debating between two cards...

I just upgraded my CPU to a Core i3 530 (as noted in updated specs) and my dilemma is I have two video cards to choose from for it. I already own both as I'm not looking to buy a new card right now; I don't have the money for it anyway. Both are PCI Express and have 512 MB of Dedicated Video RAM. One is an Nvidia GeForce 7950 GT and the other is an Nvidia GeForce GT 220. My main curiosity is which one you guys would recommend because although Tom's hardware says the 220 has better performance, I have a game or two that begs to differ.

The 7950 does not support CUDA, PhysX acceleration and the such as it is a pre-8 series card. So with that said, which one would you recommend for my current use for better performance?

(Note: I know these are not the best cards in the world and that there are far better ones out there but I can't afford them right now.)


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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18 Aug 2010   #2
A Guy

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Darician View Post
I just upgraded my CPU to a Core i3 530 (as noted in updated specs) and my dilemma is I have two video cards to choose from for it. I already own both as I'm not looking to buy a new card right now; I don't have the money for it anyway. Both are PCI Express and have 512 MB of Dedicated Video RAM. One is an Nvidia GeForce 7950 GT and the other is an Nvidia GeForce GT 220. My main curiosity is which one you guys would recommend because although Tom's hardware says the 220 has better performance, I have a game or two that begs to differ.

The 7950 does not support CUDA, PhysX acceleration and the such as it is a pre-8 series card. So with that said, which one would you recommend for my current use for better performance?

(Note: I know these are not the best cards in the world and that there are far better ones out there but I can't afford them right now.)
Well, as you said, the GT 220 is a better card. But you'll have to decide what you will use the PC for more. Or rather, what is more important to you. You have games that you think work better with the 7950, and if you play them a lot, that is the better card for you, as non gaming performance will likely not be much difference.

If however, you want to play games with CUDA, and PhysX acceleration, you'll only have 1 choice. I'd also imagine as you get newer games, they will like the 220 more.

If you have both, try each of them for a couple of weeks. See what scores each gets on WEI, and with any benchmarking programs you have. Then pick the one that feels better, and/or has the better performance numbers. A Guy
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18 Aug 2010   #3
Darician

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

You saw the WEI thread earlier. The interesting thing is that instead of that 4.7 and 6.0, the 7950 GT gets two 5.9s (as it did in Vista). But I'll have to play around with it for a bit and decide. Probably will stick to the 220 just because I have more games that take advantage of PhysX. I like SimCity 4 but I can live with some lag.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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18 Aug 2010   #4
A Guy

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium x64 SP1
 
 

Well, WEI is an oddball, to be sure. You are approaching it correctly. Weigh the pluses and minuses of each, and then choose the one with more pluses. A Guy
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19 Aug 2010   #5
smarteyeball

 
 

I wouldn't pay an iota of notice of the WEI score.

However, surely you'd have to disable physx anyway because of the performance hit?
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19 Aug 2010   #6
Darician

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Probably not. I would figure a strong enough CPU should be able to compensate for it. I'm not too well versed on PhysX though so I could be wrong on that point.
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19 Aug 2010   #7
smarteyeball

 
 

Unfortunately depending on title, physx more often than not absolutely decimates framerates when using the CPU to calculate the physical calculations.

Even as a dedicated physx card, the 220 is a little on the weak side.
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19 Aug 2010   #8
stormy13
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Darician View Post
Probably will stick to the 220 just because I have more games that take advantage of PhysX. I like SimCity 4 but I can live with some lag.
Despite the GT 220 being almost the lowest current Nvidia card (the G210 takes that honor), it is still faster than the 7950 GT. One thing to consider is that there aren't really a lot of games that have GPU accelerated Physx. You can see pretty much the whole list here,

PhysXInfo.com - Projects using PhysX SDK

the bolded ones are the ones that have GPU accelerated Physx, most of which if enabled on the GT 220 will require lowering most if not all settings to medium (if not low) to be playable.

P.S. SimCity 4 doesn't use Physx, GPU accelerated or otherwise.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Aug 2010   #9
Darician

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Right, I wouldn't expect SimCity 4 did anyway. The main difference was that the 7950 had a 256-bit path to its memory. Maybe that made the difference for that game because the CPU certainly wasn't it, though it did help. But since the 220 is overall faster, I'll probably stick to it for now, at least until I can save some money and the new lower end Fermi cards come out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Aug 2010   #10
archie123

Win 10 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

get a second hand GTX 260 off of e bay

if you do make sure you get the core 216 version though , it will blow them other cards out the window

http://shop.ebay.com/?_from=R40&_trk...All-Categories
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