It was time to retire my old Radeon 47xx series card. It wasn't cutting it with Deus Ex: Human Revolution at the resolution I wanted to run at (2560x1440). I didn't want to spend big so I went with a midrange choice. Apparently a lot happened in the few years since my last upgrade. What I discovered is that about $150 you can get a great PC gaming experience.
Based on the reviews at Amazon, I went with the Sapphire AMD Radeon HD 6850. I was not disappointed.
- PERFORMANCE. Excellent. I'm now running with all graphics settings maxed out on Deus Ex: Human Revolution with DirectX 11 enabled at 2560x1440 and the thing is as smooth as when I had it on 1280x720 with medium-level settings with my old card.
- POWER CONSUMPTION. Based on my Uninterruptible Power supply, this thing uses noticeably less power. My UPS was indicating about 64% of capacity with my 47xx card, switching to the 6850 dropped it to 55%.
- NOISE. Quiet. Easily one the quietest cards I've ever had. Even while playing Deus EX it doesn't make a lot of sound.
If you haven't upgraded in a while and want a cheap boost, then this card is a terrific choice.
(click to see the 2560x1440 original screenshots)
These captures are from the Deus EX: HR DLC called “The Missing Link”