Building an Intel Core i7 based computer – Graphics card

This one is a relatively easy choice.

The main criteria for me is the silence. Fortunately there are passively cooled mid-range graphics cards out there based on the GPUs from both nVidia and ATI. They are not amazingly fast, but hey, one needs amazing speed only when playing games or for some really specialized tasks. There is really no need for top performances for me.

The other important feature I am looking for is a double DVI output because I am currently using two LCD screens.

Next, I’ll have to choose between nVidia and ATI. This is a difficult choice because the two companies are more or less equally good. The deciding factor for me is CUDA (which is only supported by nVidia and I might play with it) and the fact that nVidia passively cooled cards are more powerful than ATI ones.

The last criteria is performance. I’ve picked the fastest passively cooled graphics card from nVidia on the market: card based on a 9600GT GPU. The bus supported is PCI-E 2.0 which is a mainstream bus (AGP and PCI are legacy buses and should be avoided). The card is manufactured by Gigabyte, a company I consider a good one and I never had problems with.

That’s it. I’m not interested in other features. Perhaps having a HDMI converter (which my card has) might be important in future if/when I decide to buy a new LCD screen. I don’t think that it will happen anytime soon though.

Note: The graphics card I’ve bought occupies two slots (see the pictures below) on the chassis due to the massive heat-pipe cooler.

I’ve bought a GIGABYTE GV-NX96T512HP 9600GT 512MB PCIe (rev 3.0) from Mlacom for 111 Euros.

See other relevant posts:

CPU cooler
The goal
Power Supply Unit

4 thoughts on “Building an Intel Core i7 based computer – Graphics card

  1. i want to buy a new pc and make it a good one , i cant decide which graphics card should i go with , here are my choices
    Single 2GB GDDR5 ATI® Radeon® HD 4870 X2 – Dual GPU Technology

    Single 1,792 MB NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 295

    Dual 896MB NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 260
    i heard that the Dual gets hot , which is better for gaming, please help !!!
    note: i am buying the intel core i7 920 chipset

  2. Hi Simon,

    Sorry, I can’t help much about gaming. Furthermore there are many factors involved in graphics card performances when gaming.
    I can only suggest looking on the internet for reviews of graphics cards in question.

  3. A good combination of a nice Processor and RAM alone can do the trick. High graphic card are only specialize for gaming and graphic design but other than that, there is no need for a super graphic card.

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