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Alright fanboys: HD 5000 or wait for GTX 300?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 2, 2009 4:25:19 PM

Looking at a double GPU card for my new build. The obvious choice today is the HD 5970 (assuming prices don't skyrocket before Christmas). However, nVidia has an ace in the hole: PhysX. My question is this: is PhysX worth it?

nVidia: "PhysX is awesome! Look at these awesome demonstrations! :: pulls out youtube video demos ::

AMD: "PhysX will be irrelevant when developers move towards standardized physics engines"

I'm using a P55 setup, so I want to stick to one GPU so I can keep all 16x lanes open on that PCI channel (so using a lower-end nVidia card with a big ATI card won't work). Personal thoughts on the best course of action for me?
a c 194 U Graphics card
a b Î Nvidia
December 2, 2009 4:31:37 PM

Bigger question than physX, how patient are you? nVidia offerings may not be out until late spring.
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December 2, 2009 4:34:23 PM

hunter315 said:
Bigger question than physX, how patient are you? nVidia offerings may not be out until late spring.


Well right now I've got an old HD 4350 just to get everything set up. Gaming performance will be pretty poor, but I can wait a few months if the right incentives are there...
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a b U Graphics card
December 2, 2009 4:36:59 PM

Get a $80 4830, $100 4850, or $125 4870 which will hold you until GTX300 releases...then ATI will drop their prices and you can decide.
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December 2, 2009 4:37:26 PM

The normal cards may not be out until spring but if he is looking for a dual GPU card like he said that may take much longer for Nvidia, if it happens at all.
The "best course of action" however would probably be a single HD5850 or an HD5870 because unless you are using a 2560x1600 monitor the HD5970 is overkill and a waste of money imo.
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December 2, 2009 4:51:14 PM

With the current stable of hardware, the 5970 is overkill for most anything. 2-3 years ago Crysis was hurting everyones build-ego. Having the money to get a 5970 today is not a bad thing, as long as the consumer is aware of the premium they are paying for, and how usuable the horsepower truly is, atm. Which is to say, it is waiting for software to catch up.

Ignoring all that if you wish, we can look at the reality of the situation. ATI has a 5970 now. Nvidia has nothing at all, and won't for several months. I think the street paper launch is looking to be somewhere around march-june now. No one can say for sure. What is for sure, is that ATI won't sit by and relax if Nvidia releases a superior game hammer to smash 3d wtih. If Fermi's Gaming prowess surpasses the comparable ATI cards, then ATI will have to refresh something to gain some ground back.

I guess my point is, if you have the money and will, a 5970 can at the least, be the most powerful card on the planet for the next 4-6 months. If having the best between Nvidia and ATI's DX11 products is REALLY important, I'd suggest what Bluescreendeath said, get a cheap card that can game (the 4350 will only make you cry) and wait for Nvidia's DX11 answer, and ATI's response.
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a b Î Nvidia
December 2, 2009 4:52:12 PM

Well, as it is hard to get 5800s right now and impossible to get the new NVidia cards, I say you might as well wait until the new year to see what that brings.
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December 2, 2009 4:54:40 PM

You may end waiting until summer 2010 for GTX300...the next big thing is always around the corner...nothing like playing the "hurry up and wait" game...

jyjjy said:
The "best course of action" however would probably be a single HD5850 or an HD5870 because unless you are using a 2560x1600 monitor the HD5970 is overkill and a waste of money imo.
+1 Agreed...

Heck, at $200+/- a 4890 is still a great card...

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December 2, 2009 4:59:30 PM

jyjjy said:
The "best course of action" however would probably be a single HD5850 or an HD5870 because unless you are using a 2560x1600 monitor the HD5970 is overkill and a waste of money imo.


I don't mind spending a huge chunk of change on a dual-GPU card if the price/performance is there. The 5970 has been shown to outperform a crossfired 5850s and can keep up with crossfired 5870s when overclocked... and it costs about as much as two 5850s.

For me, the 5970 is a much better option: simpler case setup, better airflow, allows me to use all 16x PCI lanes, and isn't overpriced. Right now it's overkill, but I love eye-candy, and this build needs to last. I want something that can deliver the fps at high details 3-4 years down the pipe. If I had an X58, then crossfiring would be a better option, but with the P55 it's not - especially when I can get the same performance from a single card for approx. the same cost as a crossfire setup.

Quote:
Get a $80 4830, $100 4850, or $125 4870 which will hold you until GTX300 releases...then ATI will drop their prices and you can decide.


Not a bad suggestion, but then that's another $100 in sunk costs. Now, if I could recoup most of that money via eBay and from cheaper HD 5000 prices once they have to compete with the GTX 300's, then that just might be worth it.
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December 2, 2009 5:01:41 PM

nofun said:
Not a bad suggestion, but then that's another $100 in sunk costs. Now, if I could recoup most of that money via eBay and from cheaper HD 5000 prices once they have to compete with the GTX 300's, then that just might be worth it.


Considering that ATI's strategy has been to lower prices as time passes, and competition arrives; if the 5970 is the card you will end up getting anyway then the total cost of obtaining now, versus buying a cheap card now and waiting, will be similar. If the top DX11 Nvidia cards ends up being what you desire, then you will have to hope their pricing isn't insane, and you will be able to sell your cheap card for minimal loss.

If I was in your situation, I would be picking up a 5970. Should it still be the card you desire, the cost will be very similar to waiting. If Nvidia offers the card you want, selling a 5970 shouldn't be an issue. How much of a loss to be expected, though, is hard to quantify. Will you lose more money selling a 5970 in 4-6 months, than a cheap card? Without knowing any of these variables, I would chose to have the gaming power until then.
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December 2, 2009 5:04:19 PM

5850 xfire is the only and the best choice for hardcore gamers.
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December 2, 2009 5:04:29 PM

nofun said:


nVidia: "PhysX is awesome! Look at these awesome demonstrations! :: pulls out youtube video demos ::

AMD: "PhysX will be irrelevant when developers move towards standardized physics engines"



Well both the manufacturers and the fanbois won't be in favor of this but i suggest that you decide based upon what pleases you rather than them :) 

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/batman-arkham-asylu...
http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/batman_arkham_asylu...

I had thought that the 295 would be $350 - $400 by now but with ATI's 5970 selling at $30 - $80 over release price and 5870 at $30 - $135 above release price on newegg, and the continuing poor yields for their common fab plant, I don't see prices going down as supply diminishes.



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a b U Graphics card
December 2, 2009 5:06:34 PM

since you're willing to wait 6 months why not make it a year? wait for the hd6000 and gtx400 (assuming nvidia survives).
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December 2, 2009 5:09:45 PM

rescawen said:
5850 xfire is the only and the best choice for hardcore gamers.


A more harcore gamer would replace 5850 with 5870 in your statement. ;) 
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December 2, 2009 5:15:40 PM

rescawen said:
5850 xfire is the only and the best choice for hardcore gamers.


Explain this sir.

Benchies show: Similar performance, relatively same cost (maybe $30 difference so long as prices stay where they are), and one GPU vs. multiple has many inherent advantages. Not to mention I have the juice and cooling to OC the HD 5970. What inherent benefits does Xfire bring to the table considering that I'm running a P55 mobo?
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December 2, 2009 5:15:48 PM

There is absolutely no way I'd be waiting for something from Nvidia at this point... there are just too many variables... mainly concerning the performance and the price. I'm a risk taker, but in this case I went with the sure thing... 5850! Hey, at $259 I don't think anyone is gonna say I got ripped off :) 
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December 2, 2009 5:17:35 PM

rodney_ws said:
There is absolutely no way I'd be waiting for something from Nvidia at this point... there are just too many variables... mainly concerning the performance and the price. I'm a risk taker, but in this case I went with the sure thing... 5850! Hey, at $259 I don't think anyone is gonna say I got ripped off :) 


You lucky bum, got it while the prices were still low :p 
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December 2, 2009 5:18:32 PM

Right now, the question is somewhat moot as you can't get a 5850, 5870, 5970 or gt300.

Keep what you have until one of the above is actually available.

I recently bought a 4870 because it was the cheapest card that could play what I wanted to play. I didn't want to spend $300+ on a card that probably wouldn't be needed for over a year from now. I plan on holding out until pcie 3.0 comes out sometime in 2011 when I'll get a whole new system.
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December 2, 2009 5:19:38 PM

KidHorn said:
Right now, the question is somewhat moot as you can't get a 5850, 5870, 5970 or gt300.

Keep what you have until one of the above is actually available.

I recently bought a 4870 because it was the cheapest card that could play what I wanted to play. I didn't want to spend $300+ on a card that probably wouldn't be needed for over a year from now. I plan on holding out until pcie 3.0 comes out sometime in 2011 when I'll get a whole new system.


AMD released a statement saying that they feel they will be able to catch up with demand towards the end of December. How optimistic this statement is awaits to be seen.
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a b Î Nvidia
December 2, 2009 5:32:36 PM

That would be great for them if they could get cards in stock before/during the holidays. If that is at all true, they should know pretty well by now whether they can actually pull that off.
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December 3, 2009 10:32:30 AM

Thanks again for all the good opinions floating around. I will see where prices are once they return to stock, and then either just get one immediately or wait until after Christmas and the prices come back down.
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