I decided to upgrade my graphics card recently. My computer is several years old and the old setup consisted of a single Geforce GTX 260 graphics card. I wanted to upgrade the graphics card so that I could increase the performance of my computer.
While looking around at all the different graphics cards for the upgrade I knew that I had a small budget. Because I wanted the new card to be around $150 I knew I could not get a current generation card. I wanted to get a GeForce 460 because I knew how great the performance was. According to what I read one 460 could outperform two 260s.
The card I ended up getting is the EVGA GeForce GTX 460 SuperClocked Video Card from TigerDirect and it only cost $169.99 and it has a $30 mail in rebate. I was able to sell my old card for $60 so in the end I really only paid $79.99 for this card. In addition this card comes with a lifetime warranty, a really great bonus.
Once I purchased the card and it was delivered I went to install it. The biggest concern I had is that the 260 was big card and I was worried that the 460 would be even bigger. If it is bigger I don’t think it will fit in my case.
After removing the 260 measured it against the 460 and I was pleasantly surprised to see that the 460 is actually smaller. Installation was quite easy because of the smaller size.
So was it all worth it? Did I get better performance? Well here are the results. With my original setup I measured the power usage and the performance. When idling at the login screen my computer with the 260 installed used about 184 watts and while running 3DMark Vantage it jumped up to 291 watts.
With the new setup and the 460 installed my computer idled at a slightly lower 156 watts. During the performance test it got to around 302 watts. This is slightly unexpected. I expected the power to be higher both with idle and load. So to see it lower during idle and higher under load is hard to explain. Perhaps their is some power saving feature that kicks in when the computer is idle.
For testing performance I ran 3DMark at 1280 x 1024 on the old card and got a score of 11771. On the new card I ran the same test with the same resolution and I got a score of 17800.
I am really happy with the upgrade. I think I got good deal on the card and I extended the life of my computer a little longer. If anyone else is in the same situation as me I highly recommend the same upgrade.
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