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which GPU is better 7970, 7950, 670

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 15, 2013 2:01:02 AM

so my friend is looking into getting a new graphics card

at the moment im not sure of his current system but he has a i5 3570k and a HD7770.

he is looking at upgrading the 7770 but not sure what to. So since he has quite a lot of money to spend i told him to save some for next computer and but a very high end graphics card but not like a titan.

but as they are all in a similar price range what should he get: GTX 670, HD 7950 or HD 7970. i told him not to get GTX 680 as it just isnt worth the extra money

i think he plays on his 1080p led TV its not a huge one though

any advice will be very helpful :) 

More about : gpu 7970 7950 670

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a b U Graphics card
May 15, 2013 2:08:47 AM

Good to stay away from a 680.

In your selection the 7970 is the best option. The 670 can be overclocked to match a 680, but the 7970 is still faster (minus the physics that comes with nvidia cards)

Also, the new 7xx series from nVidia is around the corner, basically just a rebrand (680->770, 670->760, 780 will be new). However they will be priced a lot higher than current cards. Expected price of the 780 might make a Titan a good deal.

Summary -> Buy the 7970
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May 15, 2013 2:20:22 AM

zander1983 said:
Good to stay away from a 680.

In your selection the 7970 is the best option. The 670 can be overclocked to match a 680, but the 7970 is still faster (minus the physics that comes with nvidia cards)

Also, the new 7xx series from nVidia is around the corner, basically just a rebrand (680->770, 670->760, 780 will be new). However they will be priced a lot higher than current cards. Expected price of the 780 might make a Titan a good deal.

Summary -> Buy the 7970


that seems cool, both of us think that physx looks amazing but its only on some games at the moment so its not vital he gets GTX 6xx/7xx

but okay i will wait and see but the 7970 is at a really good price like £330

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May 15, 2013 2:21:25 AM

Out of these three, clearly the 7970 is the better card especially with 3GB of vram. on a single 1080p TV you would not really notice the difference, but if he intends to ever upgrade to 3 Monitors Eyefinity/3D Surround setup then the GTX 670 becomes not even an option, and the 7970 (Overclocked to 1100Mhz) becomes the minimum requirement especially with the 3GB vram it has.

I don't know why you even mention the 7950? if he has the money for the 7970 then i don't see the point of mentioning the cheaper and lower performance 7950.

If you are on a somewhat tight budget (which you say he is not) then the 7950 is the best value for money card, and Rumor has it that you can overclock it up to the 7970 Ghz levels (Silicon lottery can still stand in your way) so i would go with it.

Again on a single monitor all these cards will make anything playable at ultra high settings, so i would go with the cheapest or if you have special needs like CUDA, Physx or want to run MacOSX on this machine or play games that are known to run better on Nvidia then maybe the GTX 670 becomes an option.
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May 15, 2013 2:28:21 AM

MyNewRig said:
Out of these three, clearly the 7970 is the better card especially with 3GB of vram. on a single 1080p TV you would not really notice the difference, but if he intends to ever upgrade to 3 Monitors Eyefinity/3D Surround setup then the GTX 670 becomes not even an option, and the 7970 (Overclocked to 1100Mhz) becomes the minimum requirement especially with the 3GB vram it has.

I don't know why you even mention the 7950? if he has the money for the 7970 then i don't see the point of mentioning the cheaper and lower performance 7950.

If you are on a somewhat tight budget (which you say he is not) then the 7950 is the best value for money card, and Rumor has it that you can overclock it up to the 7970 Ghz levels (Silicon lottery can still stand in your way) so i would go with it.

Again on a single monitor all these cards will make anything playable at ultra high settings, so i would go with the cheapest or if you have special needs like CUDA, Physx or want to run MacOSX on this machine or play games that are known to run better on Nvidia then maybe the GTX 670 becomes an option.


the only reason i suggested the 7950 was because iheard it had overclocking potential to 7970 standard like you say
he probably wont be upgrading the monitors any time soon and he doesnt do rendering or video editing so from what ive heard about CUDA is that it wont be needed so yeah thanks :) 

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May 15, 2013 2:43:47 AM

If i have the money for the 7970 then i would not bet on getting a 7950 and overclocking it to reach my target performance, as nowadays the manufacturers seem to be in an anti-overclocking trend for some reason.

They are aware that people buy lower-end card in an attempt to overclocking them to save money and get the higher-end performance, so they implement few tricks to prevent you from doing that.

For one it seems that the trend is placing good enough silicon quality in a card to reach its advertised clock frequency and NO MORE, so if you get a card clocked at say 850Mhz it could be that this is the absolute highest limit of the chip and if you push it even 50Mhz extra it starts producing artifacts and crashing your system, the other trick they employ is to lock the voltage of the card, put a low quality VRM in it... etc

And of course you can not complain or RMA a card because it does not overclock well!

So if you want a manufacturer guarantee that a particular card will perform in a certain way, then buy the card advertised to deliver that out of the box because then the manufacturer is obligated to deliver the advertised performance or replace the card.

But if you buy a 7950 hoping to get a 7970 Ghz performance then it is just luck depending on the quality of the chip you will receive, and the odds are not in your favor.

For all its worth, if he has the money for a 7970 then by all means just buy it and call it a day, if you are lucky to have a great quality chip that can overclock well then that is great news for you, but if not then you at least get the performance you intended guaranteed.

Since he only game on a single monitor and do not intend to go the Eyefinity way then i would not advice on getting the Ghz edition because it would be an overkill for that setup.
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May 15, 2013 4:36:36 AM

MyNewRig said:
If i have the money for the 7970 then i would not bet on getting a 7950 and overclocking it to reach my target performance, as nowadays the manufacturers seem to be in an anti-overclocking trend for some reason.

They are aware that people buy lower-end card in an attempt to overclocking them to save money and get the higher-end performance, so they implement few tricks to prevent you from doing that.

For one it seems that the trend is placing good enough silicon quality in a card to reach its advertised clock frequency and NO MORE, so if you get a card clocked at say 850Mhz it could be that this is the absolute highest limit of the chip and if you push it even 50Mhz extra it starts producing artifacts and crashing your system, the other trick they employ is to lock the voltage of the card, put a low quality VRM in it... etc

And of course you can not complain or RMA a card because it does not overclock well!

So if you want a manufacturer guarantee that a particular card will perform in a certain way, then buy the card advertised to deliver that out of the box because then the manufacturer is obligated to deliver the advertised performance or replace the card.

But if you buy a 7950 hoping to get a 7970 Ghz performance then it is just luck depending on the quality of the chip you will receive, and the odds are not in your favor.

For all its worth, if he has the money for a 7970 then by all means just buy it and call it a day, if you are lucky to have a great quality chip that can overclock well then that is great news for you, but if not then you at least get the performance you intended guaranteed.

Since he only game on a single monitor and do not intend to go the Eyefinity way then i would not advice on getting the Ghz edition because it would be an overkill for that setup.


oh okay i will tell him that - to get 7970 :)  i just was thinking if he was able to save some money he could invest it in something else maybe a better cooler or just save it for a build in a few years but thanks :) 
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May 15, 2013 6:54:08 AM

Yeah i learned that the hard way, i got a card thinking that i will be able to overclock it well, seeing reports of people reaching 1200Mhz and 1300Mhz with that card. i could change the voltage all i want and had a top notch cooling solution, but the chip quality just did not allow it.

I got a chip with an ASIC quality of only 61% so i could not even increase the clock by 30Mhz extra and have a stable system, if i do take it from its factory 1050Mhz to just 1080Mhz it starts producing Artifacts, not to mention that the vRAM could not be overclocked AT ALL as it causes the system to crash and restart at the slightest overclock.

At its stock settings the card would run very stable for days, try to overclock even a tiny bit and it would crash, and of course i could not RMA it because it refuses to work beyond the advertised specs :) 

Lessons learned: always look at overclocking as an added bonus and not something to base your buying decision on, if you get lucky and receive a card that overclocks well then that is awesome, but do not buy a card under the assumption that it will overclock, always buy the performance you need guaranteed by the manufacturer.

If my answer helped you please "Pick it as the solution" so that i can get credit for it :) 

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May 15, 2013 8:03:22 AM

IMO,Just grab an 7950 , then overclock it . i heard an OCed 7950 performance was on par with 7970 so you can save some bucks there .
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