I'm going to be buying a new monitor shortly to replace my old 19 inch 1280 x 1024 Hyundai LCD. I'm planning on it being 1920 x 1080, and I want to get some form of graphics card update with it as well. I'm currently using a Sapphire 4850 512mb DDR 3 that I've had for a little more than a year, and I was wondering whether buying a second and running it in Crossfirex or buying a new card to replace it would be better. In particular, I was looking at the EVGA GTX 460 1 GB, but I have no idea how it performs compared to two 4850's.
Surprisingly, 512 MB HD 4850s in Crossfire and a single GTX 460 are very similar in performance, with the Crossfire setup being slightly faster.
If you ask me, though, I'd sell the old 4850 and buy a GTX 460. Here's why, 1 strong card is usually better than two weaker ones. With one card you won't have to worry about microstuttering and you'll have a lower power drain. Not only that, but with the GTX 460, the SLI path is open for the future (yes I know you can Trifire, but GTX 460 SLI > 4850 Trifire).
GTX 460 is a very solid card, especially if you get the 1 GB version (it's worth the extra $20 over the 768 MB). I would do a little bit of reading on the eVGA version, however. They have a non-reference cooler: the "External Exhaust" which is both louder and hotter than the reference cooler (from what I've read). I don't know how significant of a difference is, but it is something to look into.
Oh one other thing, I would not be surprised to see the GTX 460's performance climb even higher. It's a new card and the drivers are still young.
Looks like I'll go for a 460, then. Thanks.