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Best PCIe Card: $160 To $240

Best Graphics Cards For The Money: October 2010
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Best PCIe Card For ~$175: Tie

GeForce GTX 460 768 MB (Check Prices)

Great 1920x1200 performance in most games

GeForce GTX 460 768 MB
Codename: GF104
Process:   40 nm
Universal Shaders: 336
Texture Units: 56
ROPs: 24
Memory Bus: 192-bit
Core/Shader Speed MHz: 675 / 1350
Memory Speed MHz: 900 (3600 effective)
DirectX/Shader Model: DX 11/SM 5

The GeForce GTX 460 768 MB delivers impressive performance and a reasonable price tag, remarkably low power usage (especially after having tested the GF100-based boards), and low noise output.

This is the first card that has really blown us away at $200 since AMD's Radeon HD 4890 was phased out, and competition with the Radeon HD 5830 has driven prices even lower.

Read our full review of Nvidia's GeForce GTX 460 for more information on the card and its underlying architecture.

Radeon HD 5830 1 GB (Check Prices)

Great 1920x1200 performance in most games

Radeon HD 5830 1 GB
Codename: RV870
Process: 40 nm
Universal Shaders: 1120
Texture Units: 56
ROPs: 16
Memory Bus: 256-bit
Core Speed MHz: 800
Memory Speed MHz: 1000 (4000 effective)
DirectX/Shader Model: DX 11/SM 5

The Radeon HD 5830 remains competitive with the GeForce GTX 460 768 MB. Both of these cards deliver exceptional performance for under $200, the Radeon differentiating itself with Eyefinity triple-monitor support. On the flip side, Nvidia's GeForce scales more aggressively when matched up to a second card, it's smaller, and quieter.

Read our full review of AMD's Radeon HD 5830 for more information on the card and its accompanying architecture.

Best PCIe Card For $220: 

GeForce GTX 460 1 GB (Check Prices)

Great 1920x1200 performance in most games

GeForce GTX 460 1 GB
Codename: GF104
Process:   40 nm
Universal Shaders: 336
Texture Units: 56
ROPs: 32
Memory Bus: 256-bit
Core/Shader Speed MHz: 675 / 1350
Memory Speed MHz: 900 (3600 effective)
DirectX/Shader Model: DX 11/SM 5

Priced $45 higher than the 768 MB version, Nvidia's 1 GB GeForce GTX 460 enjoys the benefits of a larger frame buffer, a wider memory path, and a corresponding increased ROP count. With the price of the higher- and lower-end cards like the GeForce GTX 460 768 MB and Radeon HD 5850 dropping, the GeForce GTX 460 1GB should probably follow suit to stay competitive.

Nevertheless, this board was an award-winner back when we first reviewed it.

Read our full review of Nvidia's GeForce GTX 460 for more information on the card and its underlying architecture.

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