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GPU/Monitor selection 7950/70, 760, 1440p or 120hz

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October 25, 2013 7:01:11 PM

The reason I'm torn is not the GPU, and I'll probably end up buying the 7970, but because of the monitor choice. I can't decide if I want a 1440p monitor, or a 120hz monitor. Long story short, I value competitive play and stunning visuals the same, so asking me if I play competitive FPS games or single players games won't do much (but I listed the games I played if you're interested anyways)

Which graphics card for which monitor? Which one will demand more vram? Which one will drop FPS more? The 7970 I'm looking at will have 3GB of Vram, along with the 7950. The 760 would be at 2gb or 4gb Vram.

Will it be better to wait for black Friday/that Monday for good deals on monitors? I don't mind waiting for the monitors, but the GPU I'll buy sooner rather than later.

I'm not willing to go over 400$ for a monitor, both 120hz and 1440p monitors fall around that price range, but I'm hoping to keep it less than 350$ if that's possible. Will my budget affect which one I might want to chose?

Sometimes they throw in games when you're buying GPUs, none of them I'm extremely interested, but I'll still make use of them or sell them, is there a certain time they do these deals? Newegg makes it look like you'll get the game, but through reviews it doesn't look to be the case.

While I'm at it, should I buy a PSU that will have enough voltage for SLI/Xfire in the future should I need more graphics juice when cards drop in the future, or should I wait until I might need SLI/Xfire to upgrade my PSU (I have to upgrade it anyways). Buying without caring about SLI/Xfire wattage will save me a good 40$, do PSUs last long enough for me to care about SLI/Xfire? I probably won't get another GPU for another 2+ years.

Thanks to anyone who is willing to read through all this, I appreciate it.


Gaming background and what I'll be playing if you want to read a novel (I spewed too much out, I'm sorry). Seriously, read it last, the questions at top are more important.
Spoiler

I play various games at differing levels of competition, and each game usually falls into either a 120hz or a 1440p monitor. I'll list some of the games I play/ are planning on playing and which monitor I believe I would benefit more from.
Skyrim (single player, not competitive). Skyrim has never been about the FPS for me, I find myself getting ~ 30 FPS and not caring, I care mostly about the visuals, so 1440p would be the obvious choice.
Elder Scrolls Online (to be played.. for competitive). There's going to be a big focus on PvP for this game, so I would have to go with the 120hz for the competitive nature, despite it being a TES game, and immersion being a huge deal.
FFXIV (not competitive) FFXIV is more about the story and the beauty of the world for me, so 1440p
ArcheAge (not sure) There's a big PvP focus, but at the same time the stunning graphics makes me want to side with 1440, but I would think either monitor would be of equal benefit.
World of Tanks (competitive) Not much on the graphics side, this would be almost completely competitive play oriented, and I'm already at a high level of gameplay.
GTA5 (not sure) I haven't bought it yet, so I don't know how much the graphics are going to weigh in for me, so probably both about equal.

And if you have time, with the GPUs I listed will I have FPS troubles on max settings with either monitor? Skyrim will be modded, and I'll probably be using ENB injectors wherever possible.


My specs if you're interested:
Spoiler

i5 4670
4GB of ram (I'm upgrading to 8gb)
Raedon HD 7750
Asus VH238H Black 23" 1920x1080 2ms 60hz
1TB HD
(Buying a SSD)

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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 7:14:29 PM

From what I read, I think you'd be better off with a 1440p monitor, 120Hz is geared towards more competitive games like the CoD series or Battlefield. In those games a 120Hz monitor really makes a difference. I don't expect ESO to be a big run and attack game so I doubt the 120Hz would be very beneficial over your normal 60Hz.

As for your PSU problem, I've found that Xfire or SLI isn't really the way to go if you don't buy the cards at the same time. Both SLI and XFire are finicky, and as cards get closer to phasing out you may not be able to find the exact same card you already have, and it's been my experience that if everything isn't perfect SLI (in my case) just won't work.

If you still want to try Xfire by adding in the future, I'd buy a nice higher wattage PSU now. PSUs last longer the less load you put on them and run the most efficiently at 50% load. Never skimp on your PSU, as a good one can last you 5-10 years and a bad one will probably last you in the months if it's being overworked. Go with a Corsair or Seasonic.

Hopefully that was somewhat helpful.
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October 25, 2013 7:20:51 PM

Higher Res> Higher refresh rate. 120hz monitor's don't even add as much to the depth and quality, and you'll be running at lower settings to even reap the benefits, because you'll need 120 fps. I have a korean 1440p panel and I love it.
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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 7:25:05 PM

You don't need 120fps, 61+ will be beneficial with a 120Hz monitor. You'll probably be running lower settings with a 1440p monitor, but I stand by a 1440p monitor vs a 120 HZ one.
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October 25, 2013 7:26:16 PM

P1nnacle said:
From what I read, I think you'd be better off with a 1440p monitor, 120Hz is geared towards more competitive games like the CoD series or Battlefield. In those games a 120Hz monitor really makes a difference. I don't expect ESO to be a big run and attack game so I doubt the 120Hz would be very beneficial over your normal 60Hz.

As for your PSU problem, I've found that Xfire or SLI isn't really the way to go if you don't buy the cards at the same time. Both SLI and XFire are finicky, and as cards get closer to phasing out you may not be able to find the exact same card you already have, and it's been my experience that if everything isn't perfect SLI (in my case) just won't work.

If you still want to try Xfire by adding in the future, I'd buy a nice higher wattage PSU now. PSUs last longer the less load you put on them and run the most efficiently at 50% load. Never skimp on your PSU, as a good one can last you 5-10 years and a bad one will probably last you in the months if it's being overworked. Go with a Corsair or Seasonic.

Hopefully that was somewhat helpful.

Forgot to mention I'll probably be picking up BF4, but it probably won't be one of the main games I'll be playing. ESO isn't a tab targeting MMO though, and you do have to aim, similar to Tera. It isn't exact aiming though, which is probably where the 120hz would kick in and be fantastic. That's definitely something to think about though, MMORPGs aren't as needy for 120Ghz as a FPS is.

Quote:
Higher Res> Higher refresh rate. 120hz monitor's don't even add as much to the depth and quality, and you'll be running at lower settings to even reap the benefits, because you'll need 120 fps. I have a korean 1440p panel and I love it.
That's very true, I might have to tone it down if I wanted the 120fps, though I am aware that you can benefit from the 120hz monitor without having 120fps.

Quote:
You don't need 120fps, 61+ will be beneficial with a 120Hz monitor. You'll probably be running lower settings with a 1440p monitor, but I stand by a 1440p monitor vs a 120 HZ one.
I'll probably turn off AA, and in the worst case scenario I can switch to my 1080p monitor I already have or tone the 1440p down to 1080 resolution though it would seem like a waste. I definitely don't plan on having everything cranked up in every situation, Skyrim in particular, but I'm willing to make some sacrifices.
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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 7:32:07 PM

It depends on how competitive you're going to be in your FPS, and I know ESO is different from "normal" MMOs, but I don't see it being beneficial. The only MP I play competitively is BF3/4 and those (and similar games) are where you will perform noticeably better, because things change so fast. a 120 HZ monitor can refresh twice as fast, so it will display other players locations much more accurately which is important when it takes 3-4 seconds to kill your opponent. I think in ESO or Tera, you'll probably be closer, and it will rely more on skill/level than twitch response.
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October 25, 2013 7:47:06 PM

P1nnacle said:
It depends on how competitive you're going to be in your FPS, and I know ESO is different from "normal" MMOs, but I don't see it being beneficial. The only MP I play competitively is BF3/4 and those (and similar games) are where you will perform noticeably better, because things change so fast. a 120 HZ monitor can refresh twice as fast, so it will display other players locations much more accurately which is important when it takes 3-4 seconds to kill your opponent. I think in ESO or Tera, you'll probably be closer, and it will rely more on skill/level than twitch response.

So true, thanks for the responses so far, it's really helping me narrow it down :) 
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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 7:48:29 PM

Hey glad to help, as much as I love my 120 Hz monitor, I would never recommend it to someone who doesn't play FPS super competitively.
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October 25, 2013 8:12:51 PM

P1nnacle said:
Hey glad to help, as much as I love my 120 Hz monitor, I would never recommend it to someone who doesn't play FPS super competitively.

World of Tanks would be the only twitch based one that I do currently play super competitively, and it would fall under the same category as a game like BF4, you need good reaction time, and aiming precisely is key. The only reason I wouldn't say I don't play super competitively for BF4 is because I'm not planning on playing it too often.
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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 8:21:01 PM

Well if you aren't playing it often (see: everyday or at least most days for more than an hour) then you aren't going to notice as much of an improvement (if any) with a 120 Hz monitor, simply because you aren't as "well trained" to the game. Having played WoT, I personally wouldn't call it a twitch game, yes you do need speed and precision, but there are other factors (like your tank crew's skills, what you're using vs your opponent) which I think take much more precedence than twitch.
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October 25, 2013 8:43:03 PM

P1nnacle said:
Well if you aren't playing it often (see: everyday or at least most days for more than an hour) then you aren't going to notice as much of an improvement (if any) with a 120 Hz monitor, simply because you aren't as "well trained" to the game. Having played WoT, I personally wouldn't call it a twitch game, yes you do need speed and precision, but there are other factors (like your tank crew's skills, what you're using vs your opponent) which I think take much more precedence than twitch.

Not to disagree, as there's armor and all that involved, towards the higher end of the competitive spectrum when you know where to shoot it's all about being able to shoot faster, or being able to shoot targets on the move. Shooting a target on the move takes a lot of precision, and the refresh rate would help immensely with that. But I won't disagree that a FPS game might get more out of it, having to quickly turn around and then aim for someone's head is definitely a more worthy use of 120hz than shooting something moving is.
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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 8:45:05 PM

Yeah I'm not trying to argue what constitutes a twitch game, I'm just arguing for the monitor that I think will better suite your needs (1440p).
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October 25, 2013 9:26:41 PM

Yeah I do love me some fantastic looking Skyrim more than I like ridiculously responsive tanks any day. Thanks for all your help. I think my biggest question was answered, the other ones should be solved by searching a little bit more. Again thanks for your help.

The S Korean 1440p monitor I'm looking at can apparently be pushed to 90-120 Hz, whelp that solves that dilemma. Now I just need to solidify my GPU choice and all is good.
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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 9:31:39 PM

Good to hear, I'd check out those new R9 series, I hear they are cheaper versions of the current cards like the 7950/70.
Check this out: New R9/R7 series
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October 25, 2013 9:47:46 PM

P1nnacle said:
Good to hear, I'd check out those new R9 series, I hear they are cheaper versions of the current cards like the 7950/70.
Check this out: New R9/R7 series


They're cheaper? I know they're basically the same thing, but I thought they mostly did them on the higher end cards, this is good news :D 
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a b C Monitor
October 25, 2013 10:10:14 PM

Yeah well you're just in the market at the right time. I think it was a move by AMD to establish the new naming hierarchy, and they just ended up overlapping cards to make it a bit easier to transition. Better performance for less is a good thing in my book though. Glad to have been able to help.
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October 25, 2013 10:33:13 PM

No games coming with it because they're new of course, but still significantly cheaper, I'll probably end up getting one. Really convenient that they had they redid the one I was planning on buying.
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a b C Monitor
October 26, 2013 9:36:41 AM

Archie Griffs said:
No games coming with it because they're new of course, but still significantly cheaper, I'll probably end up getting one. Really convenient that they had they redid the one I was planning on buying.


Yeah you lucked out, the new R9 series actually gave me a moment of consideration towards dropping the green team, but I'm hanging in there for Nvidia's response.
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