I'm looking to upgrade my graphics card a bit, mostly to fold on it but also to play the occasional game. Mostly I just play Half Life 2 - engine based games (HL2, Garry's Mod, TF2, stuff like that), but sometimes I do mess around a bit in Flight Simulator X. Computer is the desktop in my signature below.
Considering my 7600GT runs most of these games most of the time, I'm sure either of these cards will work.
I know ATI cards are a bit faster at newer games, but I've heard they don't fold quite as well, I haven't had the best experience with them in Linux, and I'm intrigued at the new PhysX client for Nvidia's GPUs.
When I was looking through the different cards, two stood out:
Asus EN9800GT Ultimate for $150 - $25 MIR
XFX 9800GTX+ for $200 - $30 MIR
I have an XFX card now, and it's fairly good, but this card is a fair bit more expensive. I've had decent luck with Asus stuff too - I'm using a cheap Asrock motherboard right now, and it's pretty good for what I paid for it, and I've had three older HPs that I really haven't had any problem with the motherboard.
According to the Newegg spec sheet, both cards are roughly equivilent speedwise - both have 128 stream units, the core clock and memory clock in the GTX+ are about 13mhz and 200mhz faster, respectively. This seems like a pretty minor overclock though, hardly worth the extra $50.
Not sure if it makes any difference, but I'm fairly sure that I don't have a PCIe 2.0 x16 slot, just an original PCIe one. Should the card still work, and will there be a very noticeable performance hit?
Oh, also, I'm using a fairly low wattage PSU, so I'll most likely need a new one. Any recommendations for a decent budget one?
Thanks for all your help, and sorry about the wall of text.