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 Post subject: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:33 pm 
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I need to replace my dying Radeon HD 5600, which has served me well. I'm looking for a low power replacement card. Obviously, I don't need the latest and greatest card, but I'd like to be able to play the latest games at moderate to high settings. My priorities are:

*low idle power - system runs 24/7.
*low peak power - system uses a PicoPSU with 120W brick.
*pretty good 3D performance
*low cost

Fanless is not a necessity. My PC is in an enclosure, and I can't hear the fan on the HD 5600 when it idles. While gaming, I can't hear the fan over the noise floor anyway.

Any recommendations?


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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:01 pm 
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Brian wrote:
I need to replace my dying Radeon HD 5600, which has served me well. I'm looking for a low power replacement card. Obviously, I don't need the latest and greatest card, but I'd like to be able to play the latest games at moderate to high settings. My priorities are:
*low idle power - system runs 24/7.
*low peak power - system uses a PicoPSU with 120W brick.
*pretty good 3D performance
*low cost
Fanless is not a necessity. My PC is in an enclosure, and I can't hear the fan on the HD 5600 when it idles. While gaming, I can't hear the fan over the noise floor anyway.
Any recommendations?


Take a look at the Graphics Hierarchy Chart link here:
viewtopic.php?p=556574#p556574

It show how powerful the Intel HD Graphics 3000 GPU is compared to a number of discrete video cards. The Ivy Bridge 4000 GPU is supposed to be twice as powerful. Wait a few weeks and you can see if the Intel HD Graphics 4000 GPU might meet your requirements.

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:58 pm 
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CES: His gpu is dying and you want him to replace his mobo? :D

Brian: By 5600...do you really mean 5670? Take a look at the new 7750 review. You can compare/contrast to a couple of cards in similar power range. Without knowing the rest of your system and it's limits, it's hard to give much more advice.

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 2:04 pm 
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CA_Steve wrote:
CES: His gpu is dying and you want him to replace his mobo? :D

Brian: By 5600...do you really mean 5670? Take a look at the new 7750 review. You can compare/contrast to a couple of cards in similar power range. Without knowing the rest of your system and it's limits, it's hard to give much more advice.
Oops, I read that off the System Properties tab. It's a Powercolor 5670 HD. The rest of the specs are as follows:

Biostar TA760G M2+, 3GB RAM
Athlon 64 X2 @2.1GHz (undervolted)
60GB OCZ Vertex + 1.5TB Samsung HDD

As you can see, to go with an Intel integrated chip, I'd need to replace the CPU, mobo, and RAM too. Maybe I'll do that some time, as my CPU is getting a bit long in the tooth.

That Sapphire 7750 looks pretty good. Any other good low power cards?


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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 2:30 pm 
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CA_Steve wrote:
CES: His gpu is dying and you want him to replace his mobo? :D.
That is so... but still it is an option. Apparently not only is the Ivy Bridge graphics about 50% faster than Sandybridge. Haswell graphics may be triple the performance of Ivy Bridge graphics. Yeah yeah... I know it isn't here today... but it is still intriguing:
http://www.legitreviews.com/news/12656/

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 2:43 pm 
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-->Any other good low power cards?<--

Well, take a look at the other cards in the 7750 review. Plus, Nvidia will be releasing their 2012 cards in the next month or two. Your 2.1GHz dual core will be the limiter in newer games. If you have some specific games in mind, feel free to post 'em along with your monitor resolution and I can point you to some existing game benchmarks.

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 2:46 pm 
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ces wrote:
CA_Steve wrote:
CES: His gpu is dying and you want him to replace his mobo? :D.
That is so... but still it is an option. Apparently not only is the Ivy Bridge graphics about 50% faster than Sandybridge. Haswell graphics may be triple the performance of Ivy Bridge graphics. Yeah yeah... I know it isn't here today... but it is still intriguing:
http://www.legitreviews.com/news/12656/
Interesting, but not a game-changer. Being 50% faster than Sandybridge isn't that impressive. By the time Haswell is out, who knows what the gaming landscape will look like? But in any case, integrated graphics do not yet offer enough performance for me.


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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:56 am 
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Will you consider HD6850? It is a good card and won't cost you a lot.


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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 5:52 pm 
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Slaskvlask wrote:
Will you consider HD6850? It is a good card and won't cost you a lot.

The OP is using a PicoPSU with a 120W power brick so that's not an option.


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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 6:23 pm 
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Brian wrote:
ces wrote:
Interesting, but not a game-changer. Being 50% faster than Sandybridge isn't that impressive. By the time Haswell is out, who knows what the gaming landscape will look like? But in any case, integrated graphics do not yet offer enough performance for me.
What is the most powerful non-integrated graphics that you think can be powered by a PicoPSU.... along with a motherboard, a CPU, a hard drive, a fan and a DVD?.

Here is a list of choices to select from:
Graphics Processor Hierarchy Chart at Tom's Hardware
viewtopic.php?p=556574#p556574

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:12 am 
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ces wrote:
What is the most powerful non-integrated graphics that you think can be powered by a PicoPSU.... along with a motherboard, a CPU, a hard drive, a fan and a DVD?
Good question. I took some AC power consumption readings just now that might answer it. The system consists of an Athlon 64 X2 @ 2.1GHz, 3*1GB sticks of DDR2, an OCZ Vertex SSD, a Samsung 1TB HDD, a Biostar TA760G M2+, and a Sapphire Radeon HD 5670. There is no optical drive.

Here are the readings, in watts, with/without the graphics card:
During POST, ~96/~62
Idle at desktop, 41/31
Prime95 * 2, 75/62
Prime95 + FurMark, 133/68.

I'm probably right at the limit of the PicoPSU, as 133W AC corresponds to the 120W DC nominal maximum of the PicoPSU. I'd prefer to have a little more headroom than that, so I can play games while charging a device by USB, for example.

So, I guess the question becomes: Among cards with <= 60W peak power consumption, which one is the most powerful? If I had to guess, I'd say the 7750.


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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:30 am 
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According to Techpowerup:

HD 5670 --» 14W (idle), 53W (load), 65W (Furmark)
HD 7750 --» 5W (idle), 43W (load), 43W (Furmark)


The HD 7750 is roughly twice as powerful as your HD 5670. It's $110 USD on average, or $125 for the passive Sapphire.

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:31 pm 
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rpsgc wrote:
HD 5670 --» 14W (idle), 53W (load), 65W (Furmark)
HD 7750 --» 5W (idle), 43W (load), 43W (Furmark)
Why then not use this:
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Sapphire_HD7750_Ultimate

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:40 pm 
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ces wrote:
rpsgc wrote:
HD 5670 --» 14W (idle), 53W (load), 65W (Furmark)
HD 7750 --» 5W (idle), 43W (load), 43W (Furmark)
Why then not use this:
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Sapphire_HD7750_Ultimate


I'm confused... is that directed at me? I wasn't telling the OP to use THAT specific card, that's simply the version they used in the review.

Either way, the Accelero S1 Plus can passively cool an HD 7750.

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:44 pm 
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rpsgc wrote:
Either way, the Accelero S1 Plus can passively cool an HD 7750.
Yep, and so can my Accelero VM-101. I've ordered the $105 Sapphire HD 7750 (the one with a fan).


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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:50 pm 
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Brian wrote:
rpsgc wrote:
Either way, the Accelero S1 Plus can passively cool an HD 7750.
Yep, and so can my Accelero VM-101. I've ordered the $105 Sapphire HD 7750 (the one with a fan).


Have fun and enjoy gaming on your new (faster) card.

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 Post subject: Re: Low power GPU for a little gaming?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:05 pm 
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rpsgc wrote:
I'm confused... is that directed at me? I wasn't telling the OP to use THAT specific card, that's simply the version they used in the review.
No, it was directed at the OP. I was just affirming your recommendation and taking it to the next step.

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 Post subject: "Haswell is a Real Graphics Monster"
PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:03 pm 
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ces wrote:
Brian wrote:
I need to replace my dying Radeon HD 5600, which has served me well. I'm looking for a low power replacement card. Obviously, I don't need the latest and greatest card, but I'd like to be able to play the latest games at moderate to high settings. My priorities are:
*low idle power - system runs 24/7.
*low peak power - system uses a PicoPSU with 120W brick.
*pretty good 3D performance
*low cost
Fanless is not a necessity. My PC is in an enclosure, and I can't hear the fan on the HD 5600 when it idles. While gaming, I can't hear the fan over the noise floor anyway.
Any recommendations?


Take a look at the Graphics Hierarchy Chart link here:
viewtopic.php?p=556574#p556574

It show how powerful the Intel HD Graphics 3000 GPU is compared to a number of discrete video cards. The Ivy Bridge 4000 GPU is supposed to be twice as powerful. Wait a few weeks and you can see if the Intel HD Graphics 4000 GPU might meet your requirements.


"Haswell is a Real Graphics Monster"

"Haswell is a real graphics monster. 5x the shader performance is only the beginning of the story, memory bandwidth will likely have a larger impact than the shaders in the real world."

http://semiaccurate.com/2012/04/02/hasw ... ystalwell/

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"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former" Albert Einstein


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