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7950 vs 78780xt vs 660ti

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 2, 2013 6:55:21 PM

Hi everyone i plan to build my first gaming computer when i'm done school for the summer. I have a budget of $800. I play games like league of legends, defiance, skyrim, dragon's age, and some fps like BF3. I plan on using my tv (1920x1080) until i can get a monitor. I have the processor which was 225 with taxes and i might have a hard drive that i bought to install in my computer but never got around to it and now i misplaced it. This is my build so far minus the video card.

I'm tossed up between the cheaper but also less powerful 7870 xt
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

The more powerful and slightly more expensive
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

And the 660ti (I don't know much about Nvidia since most people on the internet say amd's are better for the price)
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($214.99 @ Newegg Canada)
Motherboard: Asus P8H77-V LE ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($97.07 @ DirectCanada)
Memory: Kingston 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($59.99 @ Memory Express)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ Amazon Canada)
Case: Thermaltake VL80001W2Z ATX Mid Tower Case ($41.04 @ DirectCanada)
Power Supply: XFX 650W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($72.99 @ NCIX)
Total: $556.07
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-02 21:49 EDT-0400)

Edit: I'm new to building computers so i probably won't be overclocking any time soon.

More about : 7950 78780xt 660ti

April 2, 2013 7:04:52 PM

AMD is MOSTLY better for the price right now... Especially in your price range.

Let me put it like this, the HD7870xt/le has the best value for money, great performance at an even greater price. Now the HD7950 is not that much better at stock, about 15%. BUT it can OC a LOT to give great performance.

The GTX660 ti is worth it if you play games that favour Nvidia(none you listed). It does not OC at all.

I have HD7950s. My suggestion, get the HD7870 XT/LE, BUT if you can stretch your budget, the 3GB HD7950 IS WORTH IT in the long run.
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April 2, 2013 7:08:46 PM

7950 > 660 ti > 7870xt *both stock and OC*
Read reviews and updated benchmark. please!

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April 2, 2013 7:14:38 PM

dudeknows, you're absolutely wrong there. The 7870xt beats the 660ti in 90% of tests, and the 660ti, as a kepler chip, has little to no overclocking headroom, so loses even further there.

I would suggest a 7870XT, as it's the best value, and will run games on high settings at 1080p, but if you're willing to overclock, the 7950 will beat the pants off it by a significant distance due to overclocking headroom.
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April 2, 2013 7:20:07 PM

7870 XT is your goal. 7950 is your dream. You wan to get the 7870 XT if you can. The 7950 will be more efficient, faster and can overclock to match a 7970.
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April 2, 2013 7:23:25 PM

Show me some *UPDATED* benchmark..pix or it didn't happen.

Yeah! some games are favoring Nvidia and Radeon.

O.o: http://www.hardwareheaven.com/reviews/1651/pg5/sapphire...

I'm not nvidia or radeon fanboy just speaking based on performance not value.
i'd both test those card head to head and 660 ti heads up 2%.

But the best value among those 3 cards is 7870xt..no doubt AMD are cheap and have good game bundles.
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April 2, 2013 7:34:56 PM

I am pretty sure the 660 Ti beats the 7870xt as well although i could be wrong.Honestly it doesn't really matter fps are not everything.That being said i recommend you go with a 7950 if you can afford it.
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April 2, 2013 7:40:44 PM

Novuake said:
AMD is MOSTLY better for the price right now... Especially in your price range.

Let me put it like this, the HD7870xt/le has the best value for money, great performance at an even greater price. Now the HD7950 is not that much better at stock, about 15%. BUT it can OC a LOT to give great performance.

The GTX660 ti is worth it if you play games that favour Nvidia(none you listed). It does not OC at all.

I have HD7950s. My suggestion, get the HD7870 XT/LE, BUT if you can stretch your budget, the 3GB HD7950 IS WORTH IT in the long run.

I just need to call you out on the comment about GTX 660 Ti overclocking. Contrary to your comment, the GTX 660 Ti overclocks like crazy.

You and DarkSable seem to be confused by something, and it's a common misconception, that the GTX 600 series does not overclock well. A more accurate statement is that the AMD 7000 series tends to scale slightly better when overclocking. This means that you get more FPS performance gain per clock increase, again slightly.

Checking reviews, it's clear the 660 Ti will commonly hit 1200+ mhz over the reference 915 mhz, which is pretty good. Also not commonly mentioned, the GTX 600 series has memory that runs faster at stock and overclocks consistently better than the AMD counterparts.
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April 2, 2013 7:58:08 PM

17seconds said:
Novuake said:
AMD is MOSTLY better for the price right now... Especially in your price range.

Let me put it like this, the HD7870xt/le has the best value for money, great performance at an even greater price. Now the HD7950 is not that much better at stock, about 15%. BUT it can OC a LOT to give great performance.

The GTX660 ti is worth it if you play games that favour Nvidia(none you listed). It does not OC at all.

I have HD7950s. My suggestion, get the HD7870 XT/LE, BUT if you can stretch your budget, the 3GB HD7950 IS WORTH IT in the long run.

I just need to call you out on the comment about GTX 660 Ti overclocking. Contrary to your comment, the GTX 660 Ti overclocks like crazy.

You and DarkSable seem to be confused by something, and it's a common misconception, that the GTX 600 series does not overclock well. A more accurate statement is that the AMD 7000 series tends to scale slightly better when overclocking. This means that you get more FPS performance gain per clock increase, again slightly.

Checking reviews, it's clear the 660 Ti will commonly hit 1200+ mhz over the reference 915 mhz, which is pretty good. Also not commonly mentioned, the GTX 600 series has memory that runs faster at stock and overclocks consistently better than the AMD counterparts.


Yes, the GTX6xx series OC WELL, but GPU boost limits OCing so hard that the small gains are not worht the risk, the numbers are there, but the gains are not....
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April 2, 2013 8:05:52 PM

17seconds said:
These cards are essentially the same FPS performance-wise. The chart shows a 3% advantage for the 7950 in TechPowerUp's suite of 20 benchmarks. The GTX 660 Ti wins in several, including Dragon Age 2.



Link? That bench is ancient if I remember correctly. That is even before the XT/LE release...
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April 2, 2013 8:07:07 PM

Simply put for the 3 cards listed I would choose the 7950 out of them. Best value and should perform the best.
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April 2, 2013 8:07:44 PM

Novuake said:
17seconds said:
These cards are essentially the same FPS performance-wise. The chart shows a 3% advantage for the 7950 in TechPowerUp's suite of 20 benchmarks. The GTX 660 Ti wins in several, including Dragon Age 2.


Link? That bench is ancient if I remember correctly. That is even before the XT/LE release...

Link added. The 7870 Black is a LE model.
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Best solution

April 2, 2013 8:14:04 PM

17seconds said:
Novuake said:
17seconds said:
These cards are essentially the same FPS performance-wise. The chart shows a 3% advantage for the 7950 in TechPowerUp's suite of 20 benchmarks. The GTX 660 Ti wins in several, including Dragon Age 2.


Link? That bench is ancient if I remember correctly. That is even before the XT/LE release...

Link added. The 7870 Black is a LE model.


Interesting. Well I can see your meaning. Still, from a value/performance perspective, the HD7950 AND HD7870 LE/XT wins, the GTX660ti is on average 60$ more than the HD7870 LE/XT and perform nearly identical. Thats not even consider the performance to be gained by OCing.


EDIT : Just noticed that AA was very low on all games when tested, turn up the AA and the AMDs will overtake the GTX by quite the margin I believe...
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April 2, 2013 8:34:01 PM

Novuake said:


LOL old news, that was fixed for all games except Borderlands 2.

Here is a thread of mine we had a discussion..

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/386945-33-testing-met...

If you read that last link, the "fix" was game specific, meaning it was only fixed for certain games and required a different approach for each one. They have not addressed the core cause of the issue, and reviewers can only positively say that the fix was applied to just those DirectX 9 games they tested. AMD has reported that they are looking at a more universal fix, that will include DirectX 10 and 11 games, but that has not come out yet.
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April 2, 2013 8:54:37 PM

17seconds said:
Novuake said:


LOL old news, that was fixed for all games except Borderlands 2.

Here is a thread of mine we had a discussion..

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/386945-33-testing-met...

If you read that last link, the "fix" was game specific, meaning it was only fixed for certain games and required a different approach for each one. They have not addressed the core cause of the issue, and reviewers can only positively say that the fix was applied to just those DirectX 9 games they tested. AMD has reported that they are looking at a more universal fix, that will include DirectX 10 and 11 games, but that has not come out yet.


Not true, one of the effected games was Far Cry 3, which I bought early on and ran on my HD7950, after I installed 13.2 Beta the FPS reduced drastically. Its not driver specific, its the way Radeons HD7xxx schedule task. One fix will work for most of the games.
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April 2, 2013 9:17:38 PM

Novuake said:
17seconds said:
Novuake said:


LOL old news, that was fixed for all games except Borderlands 2.

Here is a thread of mine we had a discussion..

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/386945-33-testing-met...

If you read that last link, the "fix" was game specific, meaning it was only fixed for certain games and required a different approach for each one. They have not addressed the core cause of the issue, and reviewers can only positively say that the fix was applied to just those DirectX 9 games they tested. AMD has reported that they are looking at a more universal fix, that will include DirectX 10 and 11 games, but that has not come out yet.


Not true, one of the effected games was Far Cry 3, which I bought early on and ran on my HD7950, after I installed 13.2 Beta the FPS reduced drastically. Its not driver specific, its the way Radeons HD7xxx schedule task. One fix will work for most of the games.

Quote:
We asked Mr. Dodd whether the changes included in this beta driver would impact performance generally in DirectX 9 applications or only in the three DX9-based games we tested. We also inquired about whether the previously mentioned buffer size tweak for Borderlands 2 was included. Here's his answer:

Basically the fix was different per application (for the DX9 applications) – each fix involved tweaking various driver parameters. In the case of Borderlands 2, yes it did involve tweaking the buffer size.

So what we have in Cat 13.2 is a series of targeted tweaks that appear to work quite well for the games in question. However, Dodd says additional improvements are coming down the pike, including a rewrite of the software memory manager for GPUs based on the Graphics Core Next architecture that should bring a more general improvement:

The driver does not yet contain the new video memory manager. Our intention is release a new driver in a few weeks, which does include the new Video memory manager, which will help resolve latency issues for DX11/DX10 applications.

We look forward to the updates and to the improved gaming experience that Radeon users should be able to enjoy as a result./quote]
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April 2, 2013 9:20:39 PM

17seconds said:
Novuake said:
17seconds said:
Novuake said:


LOL old news, that was fixed for all games except Borderlands 2.

Here is a thread of mine we had a discussion..

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/386945-33-testing-met...

If you read that last link, the "fix" was game specific, meaning it was only fixed for certain games and required a different approach for each one. They have not addressed the core cause of the issue, and reviewers can only positively say that the fix was applied to just those DirectX 9 games they tested. AMD has reported that they are looking at a more universal fix, that will include DirectX 10 and 11 games, but that has not come out yet.


Not true, one of the effected games was Far Cry 3, which I bought early on and ran on my HD7950, after I installed 13.2 Beta the FPS reduced drastically. Its not driver specific, its the way Radeons HD7xxx schedule task. One fix will work for most of the games.

Quote:
We asked Mr. Dodd whether the changes included in this beta driver would impact performance generally in DirectX 9 applications or only in the three DX9-based games we tested. We also inquired about whether the previously mentioned buffer size tweak for Borderlands 2 was included. Here's his answer:

Basically the fix was different per application (for the DX9 applications) – each fix involved tweaking various driver parameters. In the case of Borderlands 2, yes it did involve tweaking the buffer size.

So what we have in Cat 13.2 is a series of targeted tweaks that appear to work quite well for the games in question. However, Dodd says additional improvements are coming down the pike, including a rewrite of the software memory manager for GPUs based on the Graphics Core Next architecture that should bring a more general improvement:

The driver does not yet contain the new video memory manager. Our intention is release a new driver in a few weeks, which does include the new Video memory manager, which will help resolve latency issues for DX11/DX10 applications.

We look forward to the updates and to the improved gaming experience that Radeon users should be able to enjoy as a result./quote]
Quote:


You realize that that is not the latest article. ANyway point is, words are words, spoken by a public relations rep. Meaning, he ahs no idea what he is talking about.

Words are words and the proof is in the pudding. My latency was decreased across the board.
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April 2, 2013 9:54:02 PM

I think the point is to many amd fanboys and really not enough NV fanboys on this site nevertheless any of those three cards will serve OP well.
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April 2, 2013 10:05:33 PM

i'm more a fan of nvidia myself but i recommended the amd since he only asked about the three. If it were up to any card i'd choose the titan but thats probably a tad overpriced compared to these offerings :) .
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April 2, 2013 11:11:46 PM

I'd say it depends.

For 1080p gaming I'd go for 660Ti (as I did, not only because first my Windforce 7950 died on me and than DCII, but that was an argument too :)  ). It is great when it comes to performance: 1920x1080 +4xMSAA or +8xMSAA - no problems at all in any game I know (I don't count Crysis 3, this is more of a Furmark among games and it is meant to be fixed). 660Ti runs cooler, eats less power and has great energy saving features + adaptive Vsync which is one of the best things I ever saw in games. There is one thing about 660Ti - I wouldn't take any other card than 660Ti PE OC from MSI. The reason is that it has best cooler among all 660Tis + it gives You best OC capability. But You will have to learn how to OC Kepler because it is much, much different than OCing any other previous card (You don't search for maximum clocks, You search for sweetspot). Some say memory bandwidth is an issue, but due to the fact that Power Edition has Hynix memory it OCs like crazy and lets You get memory performance almost on par with GTX 670 which is enough for any AA settings at 1920x1080.

BUT if You want to go over 1080p - 7950 is Your choice. Memory bandwidth is amazing and this beauty OCs like crazy (but You have to get good chip as usual). In my case I got two bad chips which were unstable but I guess it's a matter of luck.

When both cards give You same FPS, Nvidia seems to be more fluent (subjective). But in most cases 7950 will give You a bit higher FPS so You should get similar results (yes, I owned 7950 and I own 660Ti and I can confirm that when You play at 50 FPS with 660Ti and 60 FPS with 7950 you get a feeling that both cards perform the same, but it is subjective to me, so don't get me wrong - this issue should be tested more by reviewers).

7870XT is basically a crippled 7950. If You don't have to get it than don't get it. Most of them have poor cooling solutions and the Sapphire version is not flawless - in some cases card never gets down under 70 degrees (probably bad thermal paste application but who knows - noone will open his "under warranty" card) and it doesn't perform as well as You could think (when testing the card You shouldn't look only at average FPS but also at minimum). It's not that it's a bad card but both 660Ti and 7950 seems to be better choices.

I think of 7950 as a brawler, while 660Ti is a silent assasin - both are good and both deliver, but it is a matter of Your preference which one will suit You best. Good luck choosing.
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April 2, 2013 11:15:45 PM

Mephic said:
I'd say it depends.

For 1080p gaming I'd go for 660Ti (as I did, not only because first my Windforce 7950 died on me and than DCII, but that was an argument too :)  ). It is great when it comes to performance: 1920x1080 +4xMSAA or +8xMSAA - no problems at all in any game I know (I don't count Crysis 3, this is more of a Furmark among games and it is meant to be fixed). 660Ti runs cooler, eats less power and has great energy saving features + adaptive Vsync which is one of the best things I ever saw in games. There is one thing about 660Ti - I wouldn't take any other card than 660Ti PE OC from MSI. The reason is that it has best cooler among all 660Tis + it gives You best OC capability. But You will have to learn how to OC Kepler because it is much, much different than OCing any other previous card (You don't search for maximum clocks, You search for sweetspot). Some say memory bandwidth is an issue, but due to the fact that Power Edition has Hynix memory it OCs like crazy and lets You get memory performance almost on par with GTX 670 which is enough for any AA settings at 1920x1080.

BUT if You want to go over 1080p - 7950 is Your choice. Memory bandwidth is amazing and this beauty OCs like crazy (but You have to get good chip as usual). In my case I got two bad chips which were unstable but I guess it's a matter of luck.

When both cards give You same FPS, Nvidia seems to be more fluent (subjective). But in most cases 7950 will give You a bit higher FPS so You should get similar results (yes, I owned 7950 and I own 660Ti and I can confirm that when You play at 50 FPS with 660Ti and 60 FPS with 7950 you get a feeling that both cards perform the same, but it is subjective to me, so don't get me wrong - this issue should be tested more by reviewers).

7870XT is basically a crippled 7950. If You don't have to get it than don't get it. Most of them have poor cooling solutions and the Sapphire version is not flawless - in some cases card never gets down under 70 degrees (probably bad thermal paste application but who knows - noone will open his "under warranty" card) and it doesn't perform as well as You could think (when testing the card You shouldn't look only at average FPS but also at minimum). It's not that it's a bad card but both 660Ti and 7950 seems to be better choices.

I think of 7950 as a brawler, while 660Ti is a silent assasin - both are good and both deliver, but it is a matter of Your preference which one will suit You best. Good luck choosing.


Well bloody said, I like you! I disagree with on thing though. The MSI PE cards. Just because of the overvolting fiasco... Great cooler though.
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April 2, 2013 11:20:20 PM

I wouldn't call it a fiasco - You have 3 years of warranty for this card. I overvolted my card using both core and triple overvoltage with unlocked version of MSI Afterburner so I don't even wanna count how much my Richtek got beaten or how many volts I applied to each component. Still with custom fan profile I run under 60 degrees and I can say one word: "silence" :)  If it will die in 3 years time - I will use my warranty. After 3 years I will be running new card anyway :) 
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April 2, 2013 11:23:27 PM

Mephic said:
I wouldn't call it a fiasco - You have 3 years of warranty for this card. I overvolted my card using both core and triple overvoltage with unlocked version of MSI Afterburner so I don't even wanna count how much my Richtek got beaten or how many volts I applied to each component. Still with custom fan profile I run under 60 degrees and I can say one word: "silence" :)  If it will die in 3 years time - I will use my warranty. After 3 years I will be running new card anyway :) 


Fair point. BUT you are one of the lucky ones. You realize if you RMA it, you get a card without the "triple overvoltage" right? The new revision will not OC near as well after Nvidia almost boycott them.
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April 2, 2013 11:29:02 PM

Setting aside performance, for Skyrim there is a difference in the graphics quality between the cards listed. Only the GTX 660 Ti will allow you to enable Ambient Occlusion, which affects the look of nearly everything in the game. On the graphic below, Skyrim on AMD cards looks like the "AO: Off" option.

http://www.geforce.com/optimize/guides/the-elder-scroll...
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April 2, 2013 11:47:32 PM

Matto that's to much! Anyway time for bed for me.
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April 2, 2013 11:52:31 PM

@Novuake: If I RMA I will demand the same GPU. According to law in my country if it is not possible to deliver exactly the same product, You just get Your money back so for me it is like ubergreat solution :) 

And one more thing - I have new revision of the card and I still can triple overvoltage it :)  It's a matter of two things: which BIOS version You have and which MSI Afterburner You use. I use 2.2.3. AB and although GPU-z doesn't show anything higher than 1.175v, the voltage is applied directly to the gpu omiting the drivers. How do I know that? By temps and overclocking stability. More to read in 660Ti clubs. :) 
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April 3, 2013 5:07:52 AM

Mephic said:
@Novuake: If I RMA I will demand the same GPU. According to law in my country if it is not possible to deliver exactly the same product, You just get Your money back so for me it is like ubergreat solution :) 

And one more thing - I have new revision of the card and I still can triple overvoltage it :)  It's a matter of two things: which BIOS version You have and which MSI Afterburner You use. I use 2.2.3. AB and although GPU-z doesn't show anything higher than 1.175v, the voltage is applied directly to the gpu omiting the drivers. How do I know that? By temps and overclocking stability. More to read in 660Ti clubs. :) 


LOL its a shame the clocks you have are not giving you as much real world performance.
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April 3, 2013 5:52:44 AM

If you want to save on cost but still have a great card, get the 7870 XT. Only slightly inferior to a stock 7950. Great value.

If you want a better card but not going to overclock, get the 660ti. Same price as the 7950 after rebate. Factory overclocked so it beats a stock 7950.

If you are an overclocking freak get the 7950. Fantastic overclocking potential. Can be made to beat a GTX 670 easily.

Answers made simple. Have fun :) 
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April 3, 2013 6:07:34 AM

Hi everyone thanks for posting your opinions on the 3 cards. So it's pretty much just a personal preference choice between the 7950 and 660 ti. And the 7870 xt is the better card for a budget.

I was looking at more cards and there is an XFX 7950 for $280.
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

There is also a 660ti with 3gb of memory for $320.
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

I don't mind spending extra money on the video card but i'd rather not have it if it isn't worth it.
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April 3, 2013 6:13:45 AM

brad971 said:
Hi everyone thanks for posting your opinions on the 3 cards. So it's pretty much just a personal preference choice between the 7950 and 660 ti. And the 7870 xt is the better card for a budget.

I was looking at more cards and there is an XFX 7950 for $280.
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

There is also a 660ti with 3gb of memory for $320.
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

I don't mind spending extra money on the video card but i'd rather not have it if it isn't worth it.


Do not get an XFX, they are just not as good anymore. Sapphire, HIS and MSI are great options for the HD7950.
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April 4, 2013 4:14:55 AM

Novuake said:
Do not get an XFX, they are just not as good anymore. Sapphire, HIS and MSI are great options for the HD7950.


True. If you chose the 7950 you want its great overclocking potential. And high overclocks require core voltage changes. Voltage locked cards prevent you from altering core voltage, which is what Gigabyte and XFX have been known to do.
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April 4, 2013 8:27:00 AM

huilun02 said:
Novuake said:
Do not get an XFX, they are just not as good anymore. Sapphire, HIS and MSI are great options for the HD7950.


True. If you chose the 7950 you want its great overclocking potential. And high overclocks require core voltage changes. Voltage locked cards prevent you from altering core voltage, which is what Gigabyte and XFX have been known to do.

Even not considering Voltage locked. XFX is crappy.
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