Your graphics card, or GPU, is the single most important component when it comes to delivering a great gaming performance for your PC. Sure, you’ll need the right CPU for the job, and the system won’t turn on at all without a power supply, but its the GPU that performs the most work when it comes to getting the game to display on screen.
1. GeForce GTX 560 Graphic Card Reviews
Obviously the economy has not been so friendly in the past, and gamers have been affected as well. They are always looking for ways to maximize on gaming performance and at the same time save on the cost associated with essential gaming components. Almost 2 years ago, NVIDIA launched the GeForce GTX 460 graphic card that was capable of accommodating today’s graphic-intensive gaming. It was a technological invention of it’s kind and most fans could get it at a price of only $199.99 at major retail stores. Today, NVIDIA is doing it again with the launch of GeForce GTX 560 Graphics Card.
This graphic card comes fully equipped with all the features that define what modern gaming is all about. For proper tessellation, they’ve included 7 polymorph engines, which means you are fully armed to play some of the most adrenaline intensive advanced direct 11 games on the planet. Although it’s very similar to its predecessor GTX 460, it makes use of fermi-based GF 114 core which makes it possible for the GeForce GTX 560 Graphics Card to achieve amazing speeds while saving on power overall. What you’re getting is high performance in terms of speed and quality, while saving on the go.
Majority of users today, unlike their hardcore counterparts, are using older cards. Going by the latest stats from Steam data, the most widespread GPU in use today is the 9800 GT. Following closely in second position is the 8800GT. As a matter of fact, high definition displays are fast becoming the norm in the gaming arena. However, there’s a problem with the previous generation GPU’s. Most of them can’t play the latest games at the resolution that are supported by monitors. Nevertheless, they don’t support direct X 11 games. So majority of users are forced to tune their gaming settings from medium to low, which denies them the beauty of experiencing the amazing graphics that make these games attractive and fun to play.
Thanks to the release of the GeForce GTX 560 Graphics Card, which makes it possible for gamers to be able to upgrade their system and take advantage of their rich and detailed graphic capabilities. But it isn’t just the benchmark that’s an important factor when it comes to choosing which GPU to purchase, i would like to think that prices (especially at this time) are very important factors that determine what we do and what we don’t do with our PCs.
Now, with it’s core clock at 810 MHz, and a memory clock of 4008 MHz, it adds up to a really nice upgrade of older graphic cards, and the whole process could cost you about $209.99 and probably you get a 3 year warranty on the go. Then you’ll have a really nice upgrade. The good thing about EVGA is that you’ll be offered a chance to upgrade to a 5 or 10 years warranty when you register your card.
In addition to all that, the GeForce GTX 560 Graphics Card is equipped with a NVIDIA 2-way SLI. The SLI connector is a link between the GPUs that have a task of transmitting synchronization, display as well as pixel data.
Summary of EVGA GeForce GTX 560 video card specs
– Core Clock: 850 MHz
– Memory Clock: 4008 MHz
– Shader Clock: 1620 MHz
– Bus Type: PCI-Express 2.0
– Memory Bandwidth: 128GB/sec
– Memory Bit Width: 256 Bit GDDR5
EVGA GeForce GTX 560 video features
– Microsoft Direct X 11 Support
– NVIDIA 2-way SLI ready
– 45.4GT Texture Fill Rate
The PCB measures about 9 inches in length and it stands at 4.376 inches tall. One outstanding feature of this card is the dual-slot cooling design which allow maximum cooling performance. In fact, the worst thing that can ever happen to a high-level performance card is high temperatures. So this is a remarkable feature you definitely want in your gaming package.
Speaking about power requirements, the GeForce GTX 560 graphic card operates comfortably on 500 watts of power, with at least 30 Amps on the plus 12 volt rail. This gadget also requires that you connect it to two 6 pin PCI Express power connectors.
NVIDIA minimum power requirement is dependent with a PCs configuration. An ideal Pc should be equipped with a Intel core of i7 3.2GHz CPU. Should you want to run your 2 way SLI and you aren’t sure about the specifications, an educated guess shows that you’d need at least 550 watts of power supply.
In conclusion, we could say that this graphic card is an improvement, both in terms of power and features over other GeForce 500 series graphic cards. Definitely, it’s one of the most impressive graphic cards we’ve seen over the last few months. It’s worth your money, considering all the features that it comes with. You could get it even today and take your video gaming experience to a whole new level. Don’t bother about the technical information you’ve just read, buy and experience the thrill of the 21 century gaming.
2. PCI Graphics Card Overview
Video Card or a PCI Graphics Card
A video card, PCI Graphics card is an expansion card used to connect to a display monitor for rendering images videos. Normally video cards are connected through PCI or PCIe expansion slots. There are onboard graphics card which are built into the motherboard. PCI Graphics Cards may offer the abilities of rendering of 3D graphics, video capture, TV-tuner adapter, MPEG-2/MPEG-4 decoding, FireWire, light pen, TV output, or the ability to connect multiple monitors. Currently graphics cards are used for more graphically demanding purposes, such as PC games, Video editing, image editing tools and 3D animations.
Need of PCIe
Because of the extensive need of bandwidth demanded by modern image editing and multimedia applications, AGP is unable to sustain due to its moderate bandwidth. It is time for PCI Express to grow in popularity. Motherboards that support PCI Express have a large chunk of data bandwidth assigned to this new bus. PCIe slots are mainly used for VGA cards. However there are other possibilities are also emerging for e.g. soundcard. PCI Express cards do not only allow running high-end graphics card, but also it has a huge capacity for future expansion in data bandwidth.
Components of a typical graphics card
Graphics processing unit (GPU): GPU is like a CPU in a motherboard. But it is dedicated only for graphics-related functions.
Video BIOS: The video BIOS is similar to the system Bios, which is usually used to interact with the card for tuning memory timing, operating speeds and voltages of the graphics processor, RAM.
Video memory: Video memory is similar to the system memory but dedicated for graphics-related operations offered by GPU.
RAMDAC: Is known as Random Access Memory for Digital to Analog Converter. It converts digital to analog to be used by a computer display that uses analog inputs such as CRT displays normally using VGA.
Major Connection Interfaces
Video Graphics Array (VGA): Analog connector designed mainly for CRT displays, also called as VGA connector. Earlier days VGA is used in LCD monitors also.
Digital Visual Interface (DVI): Digital connector designed for displays mainly for LCD screens and video projectors.
High-Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI): An advanced digital audio/video interconnect commonly used to connect game consoles and DVD players to a display. It actually transfers large chunk of data.
3. GeForce GTX 460 Graphics Card Reviews
GTX 460 Graphics Card: If you are a hardcore gamer and like the idea of real-life gaming with games such as Call of Duty and World of Warcraft, then you want a direct x card that is going to deliver. When it comes to gaming you have to have a go big or go home attitude. The better you have, the better your gaming experience is going to be, making the gaming seem as real as possible. When it comes to getting the optimal gaming experience, the GeForce GTX 460 Graphics Card is a must-have for your gaming system, with the promise to blow away your existing direct x card.
The GeForce GTX 460 Graphics Card has a core clock that runs on 1058MHz. This product works on direct 11 support, which is going to change your gaming experience in comparison to other direct x cards you may have. This card is truly the top of the line for gaming systems and owning one will increase your system’s memory and contribute to an awesome gaming experience that is going to have other gamers scratching their heads and wanting what you have. This product was designed with quality and speed in mind. It easily connects to your PC with only one cable.
Every product has its benefits that make it loved by consumers all around. The GeForce GTX 460Graphics Card is no different from any other product. One of the pros of the GeForce GTX 460 graphics card is that allows you to play even the most extensive games without any glitches. The product is simple to install, which is always a relief when it comes to technology. Another positive of this product is it is quiet to run. Noise can be the biggest problem when it comes to technology, so when there is technology out there that doesn’t make humming noises, they are a keeper.
Another pro about the GeForce GTX 460 graphics card is that is small enough to fit into a case. People always look at the size of the products when they buy, because it makes transferring the product simple. This product uses one power connector, which makes it simple to connect and you don’t have to worry about messing with too many cords. This product also runs great of its original power supply. One of the better pros about this product is it is affordable, so you can have some extra money to spend on the game you have been wanting.
Just like every product has its positives, every product has some negatives as well. This product is very specific to PC, which can be difficult for people who are looking to hook it up using a Mac. Some people had problems with the GeForce GTX 460 graphics card freezing their computers as well. It is important to remember when you are looking at a product, there are bound to be some bugs or some products that are going to get off line with some dysfunctions. If you get one of these products, calling the manufacturer is often enough to fix the problem.
What Other People Are Saying
People who have used the GeForce GTX 460 Graphics Card have fallen in love at first sight. They love that this product can easily be stored and can help bring their computer games to life. People enjoy that the product is simple to install and you don’t have to worry about fussing with too any cords. The equipment is quiet, so you can hear the sound effects of your incredible games. Some people had some difficulty, but it was fixed by being sent a replacement from the manufacturer or it was because they were doig something wrong on installation.
If you are a gamer, then you need to have the ultimate gaming experience. There is no better way to get that incredible gaming experience than with the GeForce GTX 460 Graphics Card. This card exceeds expectations and blows other models of direct x cards out of the water. You can play even the most complex games without problems and get the ultimate gaming experience that will have your gaming friends green with envy. Not to mention, it is small enough to travel with. Great product, great name, great gaming experience.
4. PCI Graphics Card for Windows 7
Need of PCI Graphics Card
In General, you don’t need any extra video card for a computer to operate on most of the basic functionalities. The reason behind is the motherboard itself has a Graphics processing unit called as AGP. This can be used if you are doing some browsing, some word processing, spread sheet, and little small games like solitaire. So then why there is a need of additional Video card and who uses it? The answer is if your application does a lot of graphics related operations like High definition games, high resolution movie editing, and video editors uses a separate card normally.
I usually lean towards desktop computers when I have an option to choose between a desktop computer and laptop. The reason behind is the ability to choose a right component which suits my style and activities on my tasks. You can choose a good ram, good processor, the right motherboard, and the right video card.
Options on selection
Basically there are options while selecting a video card, the well known are PCI, PCI-E and AGP. All of them are made typically with similar functions. It greatly depends on the type of motherboard you use. If you use a latest motherboard the chances are you have vast selection of new and powerful devices. PCI graphics cards are little outdated already. AGP is the built in unit which may not be suitable for high demanding video operations.
Upgrades and performance
Upgrades on computer parts are necessary when you are upgrading the software progressively. So after few software upgrades in a few years down the line, you may start feeling the slowness or incapable to run applications. This is the time you should upgrade your components. One of the best examples is the recent windows 7 upgrade. I tried to upgrade the windows 7 to my 5 year old PC. And apparently it has been a failure and I upgraded mine.
Windows 7 Related
The windows 7 aero theme is a moderately video demanding interface, Meaning that your decade old computer may not accept the aero theme. So your options are to upgrade the video card. If it is 10 years old then chances are the motherboard supports only the PCI interface. So you are limited to choose a few on the current market. Few known are as below.
- SPARKLE SP94GT512D2LHPP GeForce 9400 GT 512MB 128-bit DDR2 PCI Low Profile Ready
- JATON VIDEO-498PCI-DLP GeForce 9500 GT 1GB 128-bit DDR2 PCI Low Profile Ready
- PowerColor 24PRO256M PCI Radeon HD 2400PRO 256MB 64-bit DDR2 PCI HDCP Ready
5. PCI Dual Monitor Video Card
How to choose a new graphics card?
When choosing a new one it is quite normal to have difficulties to choose the right one available in the market. Though the availability is large, the price differences are also there. So to choose which fits your requirement, It is really necessary to have some knowledge on this area.
Why there is a need to change?
In normal cases a lasts as good as other components in PC. But why it gets replaced sooner is because of the recent changes in high demanding graphics related applications introduced in the market. Like HD video, high end games and rich looking animated User interfaces. In order to avail these features, there may be a need to change the graphics unit whenever necessary.
Why should I use dual monitors?
Few years back when I was building my first computer, monitor rates are as close to the processor rates. And that too CRT monitors. But now a days LCD monitors are being manufactured very cheap because of huge production volume. And keeping two CRT monitors in desk is not a solution for many. But now keeping two 19” LCD screens are not that bad.
If you have ever worked on dual monitors (will be good if both the monitors are from the same batch same model), it is highly unlikely that you will go back to a single monitor. The productivity will be improved better. I experienced this while I was working in visual studio 2010. This application has been designed to support multi monitors. If you use the windows 7 and there are lots of new functionalities are designed to support multi monitors.
What is a dual monitor graphics card?
To have dual monitors to seamlessly switch windows between monitors it is essential to check whether it supports dual monitors. There are few type of connectors are available to connect the dual monitors. I have used USB, VGA, and DVI cables.
6. MSI GTX275 Lightning Review (1792MB)
Nvidia is in full swing with the launch of their latest graphics card series, but for now we’ll take a look at an old acquaintance – a GTX275. This one is an MSI variant with some added features. It’s been dubbed the MSI GTX275 Lightning and includes new and exciting stuff like Hi-C CAP (Highly-Conductive Capacitor), SSC (Solid State Choke) and Solid Capacitors.
All of these extra features have of course been added to help with overclocking and make the card more stable overall; the Solid Stake Chokes are there to improve stability and eliminate the buzzing sound that some similar cards are known for. The stock cooler has been replaced with MSIs own cooler with five heat pipes, of which two are 8mm heat pipes that MSI calls super pipes. All in all, it is definitely one of the most full-featured cards of its type on the market.
1792 MB GDDR3 PCI-E 2.0
DX10, PhysX support
GPU Clock: 700MHz
Memory Clock: 2300MHz
Ports: 1x VGA, 1x DVI, 1x HDMI
600W PSU Recommended
Not surprisingly, this card is relatively large and takes up two slots on the motherboard. It’s also quite heavy thanks to the “Twin frozen” cooling system. Considering the added cooling effect you get from these things, it doesn’t feel like an issue though.
Just like all graphics cards nowadays (except for some laptop GPUs), this card is overclockable via software – both clocks and voltages can be adjusted with the included MSI Afterburner. You can adjust the GPU speed, RAM speed, shader speed and fan speed at different intervals, and then just click the Apply button and you’ll have a much faster and hopefully still stable gaming system.
Test system: Asus P6X58D, Core i7 920 @ 3.8GHz, 3x OCZ Gold 2GHz, Seagate Barracuda 1.5TB
3DMark Vantage score: 12,510. Futuremark’s 3DMark Vantage is a thoroughbred DX10 tests, that isn’t backwards compatible with DX9, meaning that it only runs on Vista and Windows 7. As with all Futuremark software in the first few years, 3DMark Vantage requires a really fast graphics card to give some good results.
Furmark is another extremely demanding piece of software that is often used to test your settings and “burn in” the card, i.e. make sure it is stable under stress for longer time periods. In the quick benchmark the GTX275 delivered an average 48fps at 1680×1050-
Far Cry 2: We ran this game with maximum settings at our monitor’s native 1680×1050 resolution with 8xAA. It averaged slightly below 60fps with some occasional drops to the mid 30s. In other words it’s fully playable even with all the settings maxed out, so we’ll just leave it at that.
Resident Evil 5: The latest Resident Evil game from Capcom is not that demanding as it turns out – at least not for the GTX275 Lightning. With all settings maxed out at 1680×1050, the game averages 76fps in the DX10 benchmark.
Overclocking and Conclusion
When you get playable framerates even with the highest settings, it’s relevant to ask why you would need to overclock the card at this time. You would just make it use more power with no noticeable improvement in image quality. On the other hand, this makes the card future-proof. Once you start running next-gen games there are still plenty of reserves to be squeezed out of this MSI card, especially since it’s equipped with very overclocking-friendly components.
7. Radeon HD 5970 Makes Password-Cracking Easy
The Russian software developer Elcomsoft has tested the most effective way to crack passwords. The result was a crushing victory for ATI’s most advanced graphics cards HD5970. Elcomsoft received much attention last year when it reported that they had developed a program that could use modern GPUs could crack the passwords much more efficiently than before.
The latest version of its software (which among other things can reset the password to the iPhone backup and wireless networks) is now able to take advantage of the AMD / ATI Radeon HD 5000 series graphics cards. The technology, called GPGPU-accelerating is far more effective than the use of conventional processors, and supports both Nvidia and AMD graphics cards. Tests have shown that the dual-GPU Radeon HD 5970 is vastly superior to the competition.
According to figures from Elcomsoft, the Radeon HD5970 is capable of handling more than 103 000 passwords per second using a dictionary-attack, which is about twice of what Nvidia’s Tesla S1070, a quad-GPU graphics card designed for professional users is capable of.
The software is based on Nvidia’s Cuda technology. This is a GPGPU technology intended to relieve your ordinary processor, and ironically the main competitor AMD’s graphics cards seem to work best with the technology.
Most of the above cards can be configured in SLI or CrossFireX, which will improve performance but not necessarily double it (or treble in 3-way SLI etc). How well a multi-card setup performs largely depends on the driver support. When using a multi-GPU configuration it is therefore more important than ever to have the latest drivers installed or you might not have a benefit at all from the extra graphics card(s). Most of the time there are specific profiles that need to be applied for each game for optimal performance, but these are integrated in the drivers and rarely something you have to worry about.
As far as we’ve been able to discern, these are the top 10 desktop graphics cards currently available on the market. The ranking is based on several factors and real-world performance may differ between different cards and different games. There are also differences between different cards from different manufacturers–some are factory overclocked and they all have their own unique pros and cons. If you find an error in the list, don’t hesitate to use the comments to let us know.
Either way, when purchasing a graphics card you can largely expect to get what you pay for, although there are some that offer a better price/performance ratio than other. Hopefully this list has at least helped you get an overview of what’s currently available and what to expect from the different GPUs.