I'm possibly in the market for a new video card, which will be used purely for gaming.
At the moment I'm using a firstname.lastname@example.orgGHz coupled with an HD 5770, so CPU bottlenecking shouldn't be too much of a problem.
My monitor's native resolution is 1980x1080.
The most appealing options seem to be the HD 7850 and HD 7870 cards. Here the Sapphire RADEON HD 7850 (1 GB) is ~170€, the Club 3D Radeon HD 7850 CoolStream Edition (2 GB) is ~192€ and the Sapphire RADEON HD 7870 GHz Edition (2 GB) is ~227€.
I'm primarily trying to decide between the 1GB 7850 and the 7870, as I don't think the 2GB 7850 seems to represent as good of a value option at the resolution I will be using the card at.
Other vendors are of course also available, but these are the cheapest ones in their respective categories.
So basically, the 7870 is about 34% more expensive than the 1GB 7850, but "only" gives a ~20% performance gain according to this
This card should ideally last at least two years (my current video card was bought in early 2010), so I'm leaning towards the HD 7870.
Also, are any of the 7850/7870 cards considered significantly quieter than others out of the box? I'd prefer not buying and mounting an aftermarket cooler, as that would void my two-year right to invoke lack of conformity (we have a law guaranteeing this in my country).