best graphics card for WoW on ultra settings

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90 Draenei Shaman
9890
i want to max the settings without going below ~40fps even with 40+ people slinging lightning bolts.

i might get the radeon 7950 with 3gb just to last me thru the next expac but now im thinking the 7850 (2gb not 1gb) might be good enough for $100 less.

i havent been a huge fan of nvidia since my 7900gtx couldnt do HDR and AA at the same time (back when oblivion was a newer game) but if there's any proof that nvidia's perform better for WoW (for the same price or cheaper) i might be inclined to go that route.
90 Human Rogue
12010
if you mean raid environment it depends on raid encounter the best system will dip down to 25ish area just because it is the nature of this game, the 7850 should be more than enough to max this game assuming your other hardware is up to the challenge
90 Draenei Shaman
9890
well im getting a new system

it will have:
core i5 quad core 3570k (for overclocking)
16gb dual channel ripjaws ram
256gb solid state system drive (hoping to minimize time wasted on load screens)

i'm just debating wat video card to get.

i was just looking at benchmarks on tomshardware and it says the 7850 dips down to 38 fps on ultra which i'm afraid might bottleneck the system down the road... especially in a raid.

does anyone by chance have a 7950? and if so what number FPS do you think i would get with this card? there is no official benchmark for this card on tomshardware.
Edited by Mephala on 12/13/2012 10:41 PM PST
90 Draenei Shaman
9890
btw i saw a post by kalganized and i think i decided on the 7950 and i will probably OC it a bit too... it's definitely worth the extra $100 just to make sure the card lasts me awhile it looks like.

maybe i'll even get an aftermarket cooler for it too :)
90 Human Rogue
12010
well if you are playing other games then yes a 7950 is a better investment, and where did you see a 7850 dipping down to 38 fps? Were they like running WoW on 2 monitors at once?
78 Blood Elf Paladin
1040
7850 is already overkill in my opinion for an 8 year old game. But I would take the 7950 just because of the overall performance and future proofing. You won't need to upgrade in like another 5 years.
Edited by Anjloh on 12/14/2012 1:15 AM PST
90 Worgen Death Knight
5195
@Mephala,

I am currently running the Powecolor 7950 PCS+ with a 1050/1550 overclock and unfortunately I am still experiencing some pretty bad frame drops at max settings, especially in the new content. My average FPS is 45-60, however it highly populated areas, It can get as low as 25. I have all updated drivers, and I am a little confused as to how this card can not max this game for 60+.
Granted I am running an FX-6100 oc'd to 4.5 ghz(spare me the Intel flame war, please), however I never took this for a CPU heavy game. Especially when I can max out BF3 for 50-60 smooth fps. Anyway, every system/rig is different, however figured I'd give you a little personal experience with the card. Other than my quips with WoW, its an amazing card!
Edited by Gobblueth on 12/14/2012 5:02 AM PST
90 Worgen Death Knight
5195
P.S. The Powercolor PCS+ aftermarket cooling is great on this card! I have the fans at 40%, and when no in running a game, my temps are as low as 30. With gaming, I maintain a steady 60C, with maybe 65C spikes. This is also with a overclock and 100% GPU usage. When playing WoW specifically, it never goes above 55. If you are committed to getting the 7950, definitely check out Powercolor. Oh, and make sure your tower can fit it, because this card is MASSIVE(fits rather snuggly into my Mid-Tower)
Edited by Gobblueth on 12/14/2012 5:23 AM PST
90 Blood Elf Paladin
8895
Well, you know now; WoW heavily favors Intel CPUs due to its not very multi-threaded-ness, coupled with heavy reliance on CPU's IPC capacity.

Just switching to an i5 would grant you ~10 FPS additional minimum FPS
90 Night Elf Druid
11270
yeah, the 7950s are really good bang-for-the-buck, one of the better values on the market right now. And I second Gob's Powercolor recommendation. My old computer is still using a PowerColor 3850 (AGP even! lulz), and that was simply a fantastic card with a very effective cooler.
Edited by Drainbow on 12/14/2012 8:28 AM PST
90 Draenei Shaman
9890
how hot does the intel cpu run and how hot does the 7950 run?

just wondering what type of overclock i can get with stock cooling.

oh and i'd fix the cooling myself instead of using the thermal compound provided, and i would probably sand the coolers down to a fine finish if needed...

ive just spent money on aftermarket coolers before and it seems a waste of time and money to me.
90 Night Elf Druid
11270
The 7950 seems to run a bit cooler than many other current high-end video cards. If you get one with a beefcake cooler then you should be fine to OC it a bit. With the CPU, I've been down on stock cooling for a long time. I don't even bother to take the stock cooler out of the box. I currently have a Cooler Master Hyper 212 & it's very effective & quite affordable (there are 2 versions, but the price/performance difference is negligible).
90 Draenei Shaman
9890
meh im not going to use an aftermarket cooler if it runs cooler than 70C under a full load. that's perfectly fine for silicon. so long as its stable.
90 Blood Elf Paladin
8895
Intel CPUs run really cool compared to AMD FX CPUs when in full load / overclocked.

When idle, the temperature is more or less the same between the two.
90 Draenei Shaman
9890
yea i was going to mod the default cpu cooler to lower temps by a few celsius (because i have better things to spend money on, and i have extra mx-3 laying around)

and possibly even the default graphics cooler.

ive applied aftermarket cooling to CPUs and graphics cards before and in both cases i've basically ended up giving them away to the person who bought the respective cpu or graphics card or had it sitting in a box for a long time (still have a thermaltake big typhoon laying around)
Edited by Mephala on 12/14/2012 9:09 PM PST
90 Human Warrior
4935
oh yeah, well im playing on a intel pentium rated at 2.6ghz with 2gigs of kingston ram at pc3200 and a 120gb seagate barracuda i get no higher than low settings and my comp model is a dell optiplex gx270 in stormwind city on a good day id hit no higher than 30fps would a radeon 5450 suffice to med-high settings my tech savy pals?
90 Troll Druid
Req
3015
7950 has a deal with 2 free games (crysis 3 and bioshock) great card i got it for $299 the HIS
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814161420
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