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Triple Monitors and V-RAM requirements (High resolution)

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March 28, 2013 3:26:51 PM

Hey all,

Recently I've looked into putting some money down on a new gaming machine. I've decided to go ahead and drop the cash on a Dell U3011 30" 2560x1600 monitor. However I was also wanting two other monitors (Asus 24" VE248H).

I've yet to find anything concrete on my question, so I'm hoping someone here will have an answer. Part of my build is two GTX680's in SLI and I am torn between getting the 4GB V-RAM cards or the standard 2GB. I'd rather go with the 2GB cards to save some money (Entire build is running me in the 3.5k range right now) as the 4GB cards are a good $70 more expensive. I am worried about my performance, however, as I've seen that triple monitor setups can be taxing on your system.

I am only going to be using the Dell 30" for displaying games while the other two will purely be for applications. Will 2GB of V-RAM between the cards be enough for this or would I be safer spending a little extra for the 4GB cards?

If it applies, rest of the build is as follows:

CPU: i5 3570k (planning to overclock)
MoBo: Asus Maximus Formula
RAM: Corsair Vengeance 16gb (2x8gb)
PSU: Cooler Master Silent Pro 800W


Disclaimer: I realize some will say a 120hz monitor would suit me better for gaming, however I have seen both a Dell U3011 and a 120hz monitor first hand and I can safely say I like the higher resolution more.

I also realize my build is a little extravagant on cost and that I could find more cost efficient parts, but my budget right now is allowing it (Good chunk of the cost is from peripherals anyway). I'm only getting stretched now on the choice of GPU.



Thank you!

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a b C Monitor
March 28, 2013 3:42:01 PM
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Get the best of both worlds - get a pair of 4GB 670s. A 680 is only going to be 5% faster than a 670, but it costs 25-30% more - why waste the money?

Also, if you're interested, and have the cash, I'd suggest going with a korean "pixel perfect" 27 or 30" 120Hz, 1600p monitor. Best thing you can get - and it won't cost more than that three monitor setup. Seems to me like it makes way more sense, as you won't be gaming on all three monitors anyways.
a b C Monitor
March 28, 2013 3:42:29 PM

If you're not gaming on the 3, then you don't need to worry about the vram as much but using a 2500x1600 resolution monitor, it may come in handy. Whats in the rest of your build for it to come to 3500k? Maybe look at a Titan instead a single cards are always better than dual cards, less problems, etc.
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March 28, 2013 3:58:15 PM

DarkSable said:
Get the best of both worlds - get a pair of 4GB 670s. A 680 is only going to be 5% faster than a 670, but it costs 25-30% more - why waste the money?

Also, if you're interested, and have the cash, I'd suggest going with a korean "pixel perfect" 27 or 30" 120Hz, 1600p monitor. Best thing you can get - and it won't cost more than that three monitor setup. Seems to me like it makes way more sense, as you won't be gaming on all three monitors anyways.


I've considered downgrading to the 670s before. Ultimately decided on the 680s. As I said my budget for this thing is rather large so I didn't mind throwing the extra money in for the increase. As for the Korean monitors, I keep hearing about them, but can't ever seem to find a link, any chance I could get one to a good 30" to check it out?

getochkn said:
If you're not gaming on the 3, then you don't need to worry about the vram as much but using a 2500x1600 resolution monitor, it may come in handy. Whats in the rest of your build for it to come to 3500k? Maybe look at a Titan instead a single cards are always better than dual cards, less problems, etc.


Combination of a new mechanical keyboard, better mouse, a good quality headset, good quality speaker system for when I'm not using it (Maximus Formula has excellent audio compared to most other motherboards, so I'm told), case, case fans, ect...the list goes on. I'd say my peripherals, case parts, and software add on at least 600-700 USD to the whole thing. I've only ever used laptops so far so I'm having to buy everything from scratch, figured I'd buy parts that would last me.

I have considered the Titan, but every chart I've seen shows dual 680s can outperform it in most instances for about the same price. Stock 2GB 680s would be cheaper, if only by a few dollars. I'd take the shortcomings of SLI over the Titan.

March 28, 2013 4:07:27 PM

the high level of resolution you plan on running you want the biggest frame buffer you can get. don't settle for 2gb cards. its the wrong place to try and save money with ultra high resolutions. i would say 3gb min (amd cards) 4gb (nvidia). the titan has 6gb and would be the best single gpu card you could get for such a set-up and consider you could add another later far exceeding the performance of 2 680s.
a b C Monitor
March 28, 2013 4:27:16 PM

It seems silly to spend that much more money for basically NO better performance, but that's fine.

As for the korean monitors, this is the most popular of them: http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-YAMAKASI-Catleap-Q270-2B-Ex...

Also, know that ebay has your back on this - you get a full refund if it's not pixel perfect or 120Hz.
March 28, 2013 4:34:24 PM

DarkSable said:
It seems silly to spend that much more money for basically NO better performance, but that's fine.

As for the korean monitors, this is the most popular of them: http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-YAMAKASI-Catleap-Q270-2B-Ex...

Also, know that ebay has your back on this - you get a full refund if it's not pixel perfect or 120Hz.


Cool, thanks for the link. I'm still not 100% on the 680's, might bump them down to the 670's and go with this monitor using the savings. I think I have my answer as far as performance goes.

atomicWAR said:
the high level of resolution you plan on running you want the biggest frame buffer you can get. don't settle for 2gb cards. its the wrong place to try and save money with ultra high resolutions. i would say 3gb min (amd cards) 4gb (nvidia). the titan has 6gb and would be the best single gpu card you could get for such a set-up and consider you could add another later far exceeding the performance of 2 680s.


I'd rather not go with the Titan. Despite how much is going into my new computer, $1000 is just way too steep for that thing. Either the 670's or the 680's will future proof me.
March 28, 2013 4:37:11 PM

totally understand the cost of titan is prohibitive...just make sure you get a big frame buffer or you'll be sorry when you game...4gb will be plenty for the near future (1-2 years) at those resolutions.
a b C Monitor
March 28, 2013 5:08:09 PM

2 670's 4GB are cheapest $400, closer to $430 more places, so $860 or a Titan for a $1000 that is 6GB, only 1 card instead of 2, will allow you to easily add a second Titan in a year when they are cheaper and you need more power, will use less power, less heat, no SLI driver issues or games that don't like SLI. On a $3500 rig, the extra $140 doesn't seem like a big deal and I'd cut back my $700 in mouse and keyboard and speakers and go Titan over that.

Your choice really, just the general rule when trying to build a gaming tower is go with the single best card you can afford and then have the option to SLI/Crossfire down the road and not start off limiting yourself. In a year Titans will be cheaper and you can add a second one. Get two 670's now, they will be selling for probably 1/2 of what they are now new and used you'd be lucky to recoop 1/4-1/6 of your money.
a b C Monitor
March 28, 2013 8:05:57 PM

getochkn said:
2 670's 4GB are cheapest $400, closer to $430 more places, so $860 or a Titan for a $1000 that is 6GB, only 1 card instead of 2, will allow you to easily add a second Titan in a year when they are cheaper and you need more power, will use less power, less heat, no SLI driver issues or games that don't like SLI. On a $3500 rig, the extra $140 doesn't seem like a big deal and I'd cut back my $700 in mouse and keyboard and speakers and go Titan over that.


1) The only place you can find a titan in stock is selling it for over $1,200.

2) The Titans are NEVER going to go down in price; they're going to SKYROCKET, if you can even find one down the road.

The Titan is not a production chip, it is a limited release product made as an example of the technology Nvidia has. That means they aren't making any more, which means buying one now to SLI it down the road is not an option. You want two Titans? You better hope you can even find them anymore, and you better expect to pay a LOT of money.

!