The Thousand Dollar Video Card


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You can read the details here. Essentially, it’s a high-end video card with water cooling.

Well, I suppose it’s better to relieve with too much money of their burden than cocaine. 🙂

Foreveryone else, seems to be you could get a water-cooling system that would cool the other needy parts of the computer, plus the computer itself, for little more than this card.

When Does It Stop Helping?

I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask, “What would this do for me?” For that matter, this is a question that should start to be asked about video cards, period.

As we’ve mentioned a number of times before, video card manufacturers seem hellbent on having a very expensive first-class of video cards, and below a certain price point, they no longer sell older first-class cards, but rather cards designed to be second-class from the getgo.

This puts gamers on a budget in a quandary. They ask themselves, “Do I have to get the latest and greatest just to stay competitive, or can I kill just as well without all the possible eye candy?

It’s clear that for some gaming situations, improvement in hardware will yield improvement in gaming performance. If you have a GF2, and playing a relatively recent game, you’re likely facing some real handicaps.

But what would be good enough to get rid of the handicap? No doubt you’d do better with A Ti4200. But how much higher would your scores be with a Radeon 9700? An FX5900? At what point does spending more money only get you eye candy?

There’s nothing wrong with wanting and paying for eye candy. What isn’t so good is paying a ton expecting to be able to perform better, and getting just eye candy instead.

Fuzzy Logic

This is a pretty hard question to answer.

Obviously, there’s a technical aspect to this. Different games have different requirements, and Game A may well relatively modest hardware requirements while Game B.

Those complexities are minute, though, in comparison to trying to figure out the human factor.

A million people will have a million different skill levels, and they will hardly scale as predictably as a CPU.

You can say somebody who spent $5,000 on a computer system and can’t shoot anybody is a lousy player, but how sure can you be as sure about someone just as lousy with a Celeron 450 and a Ti2 card? It might help a lot, a little, or not at all.

If you don’t look for the enemy, it hardly matters how well or smoothly he’s displayed on the screen. Besides, why are you there in the first place? You’re there to find your enemy and do it to him before he does it to you. You’re not there to admire the scenery or notice how good-looking your enemy is.

Now if you’re in a position to do both, fine. But if you’re not, one takes priority over the other, and this is the kind of choice one ought to be able to make.

It may well be that only the very highly skilled can take advantage of the subtle improvements a very high-end video card may give you. So a very high-end card may be essential in the big-money finals of a professional game tournament, and that’s about it.

There’s a lot of possibilities. Just about the only thing you can say and be sure about is that there will be no simple, clear, precise rules even the most comprehensive and thorough test could reveal, outside of strictly “Duh” stuff.

That doesn’t mean you can’t find out something useful.

So We Ask

This may be one of those inquiries that blows up in our faces and doesn’t yield any useful data, but nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Question 1:

What games do you most seriously play?

Question 2:

What system upgrades (from what to what) have you made that you feel made you a significantly better player in the game, and what reasons do you have for thinking like that?

Question 3:

What system upgrades (from what to what) have you made that you feel did not make you a significantly better player in the game, and what reasons do you have for thinking like that?

Feel free to add your thoughts and observations, or other sources of info.

Ed

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