Originally Posted by Random Murderer
do you guys think it would be better to just buy a cheapie 2600 or something and run that as a dedicated folder and keep the 3870 for gaming? or just bite the bullet and fold on the 3870?
If you want a cheapie card, get a 9600GSO...though OC'd it might speed past your 3870, it'll fold better than my 9600GT. You can snag 9600GSO's around $100 pretty easily. That or find a cheaper 8600GT/GTS and use that for folding...right now the ATI/AMD GPU's just don't have the support they should...it's kind of aggrivating imo. Even tho I don't have an ATI card installed, and my backup card (x1950xtx) is no longer a supported GPU for folding, I think the ATI cards have a lot more performance for folding to be extracted and should be by now.
You can try folding on the HD3870 for now, see if it works okay for you while gaming and such. If it aggrivates you, then you have a few options...though I do recommend atm, for the budget performer/folding card is 9600GSO, next would be 9600GT in 9xxx series of cards. Shader power in the GSO wins overall though, when OC'd the GT is left behind.
I know that doesn't really help you in the direction you wanted to hear, but I don't think getting a 2600 series would be beneficial in the folding-per-dollar performance, at least right now. I would say steer clear of that atm.