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Should I get two 660ti cards or one 680 in a WC loop?

Last response: in Overclocking
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December 8, 2012 3:00:50 AM

So here's the deal: I can get 2 660ti cards and run them in SLI for about $600 and install them with the normal stock coolers or I could get a 680 card for about $450 + a waterblock for about $100 + a RX240 radiator for about $75 and install the single 680 in my CPU WCing loop for about $625 total.

On one hand I have the 660ti SLI which outperforms the 680 by 25% to 35% and on the other hand I have a card which will perform 25% to 30% but I can install it onto my loop...

I really don't know what to do here. Also, if I set my settings to High in BF3 with Anti-Aliasing and Anisotropic Filtering on medium settings, can I keep an average of 100+ FPS in the game?

Thanks for the help!

More about : 660ti cards 680 loop

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a b U Graphics card
a b K Overclocking
December 8, 2012 3:20:29 AM

SLi... look up Microstutter.

Single card is nice, but overclocking on one card isn't always going to net you the gains. 660ti and 670 are so close to be considered. I'd buy the 670 because of the larger memory bus. They perform better when it comes to higher resolutions and AA settings.

2x 660ti's are going to be insane, but that bus is going to cause problems with high end AA settings for sure. The 680 is going to be pretty good, but I'm almost certain the 660Ti's in SLi is going to mop the floor in overall speed unless you break it down to that 192-bit bus. Personally I'd be more into looking at the 680 if I was sticking with nVidia but I wouldn't put a water cooler on it. I'd buy a nice version with a non-reference cooling system that performs and go from there.

Second, I'd skip nVidia completely if it was. If I was going into the $600 range, I'd probably end up buying two 7950's which will literally eat the 680 and 660Ti SLi setup in everything.

Example, BF3 in my machine with two 550ti's I can run 1920x1080 with everything on ultra aside from high end AA settings and hold 45 for the most part. The 192-bit bus does limit their abilities there for sure. Two 7950's with their 384-bit bus is going to be insane.

So my opinion I'd go with these solutions.

nVidia

2x GTX670's (if possible with budget)
1x GTX680 Pretty much will run anything you throw at it regardless at excellent FPS


AMD

2x 7950's in Crossfire
1x 7970

Those setups will slay almost anything and the best bang for the buck is probably going to come from the 7950's as they are going to be potent even at stock speeds. Also, the only reason I'd personally go with nVidia right now would be for Physx but there isn't enough games that take any advantage of it so it may not be worth it.
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December 8, 2012 3:33:33 AM

steddora said:
SLi... look up Microstutter.

Single card is nice, but overclocking on one card isn't always going to net you the gains. 660ti and 670 are so close to be considered. I'd buy the 670 because of the larger memory bus. They perform better when it comes to higher resolutions and AA settings.

2x 660ti's are going to be insane, but that bus is going to cause problems with high end AA settings for sure. The 680 is going to be pretty good, but I'm almost certain the 660Ti's in SLi is going to mop the floor in overall speed unless you break it down to that 192-bit bus. Personally I'd be more into looking at the 680 if I was sticking with nVidia but I wouldn't put a water cooler on it. I'd buy a nice version with a non-reference cooling system that performs and go from there.

Second, I'd skip nVidia completely if it was. If I was going into the $600 range, I'd probably end up buying two 7950's which will literally eat the 680 and 660Ti SLi setup in everything.

Example, BF3 in my machine with two 550ti's I can run 1920x1080 with everything on ultra aside from high end AA settings and hold 45 for the most part. The 192-bit bus does limit their abilities there for sure. Two 7950's with their 384-bit bus is going to be insane.

So my opinion I'd go with these solutions.

nVidia

2x GTX670's (if possible with budget)
1x GTX680 Pretty much will run anything you throw at it regardless at excellent FPS


AMD

2x 7950's in Crossfire
1x 7970

Those setups will slay almost anything and the best bang for the buck is probably going to come from the 7950's as they are going to be potent even at stock speeds. Also, the only reason I'd personally go with nVidia right now would be for Physx but there isn't enough games that take any advantage of it so it may not be worth it.


Thanks for the great feedback! What I will do is the following: I will try to get two 7970 cards because they are the price of the 670 but with the performance of almost a 680. If I run a bit low on cash, my fallback plan is to get two 660 ti cards. The 7950's perform about as well as the 660 ti, or at least that's how it appears in benchmarks I've seen, and they cost more, so for me, that's pretty much out of the question.

So again: I want to get two 7970's or two 660 ti's if my budget doesn't allow for the 7970's. Thanks for the help though!
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December 8, 2012 3:33:41 AM

Best answer selected by freakyguy88.
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a c 166 U Graphics card
a b K Overclocking
December 8, 2012 4:18:11 AM

Best NVidia single GPU card:

ASUS GTX680 TOP (DC2T) for about $520 to $540. (3-slot, awesome card)

Points:
- I prefer running games at 60FPS VSYNC (synched to monitor). So enable VSYNC and turn the quality up until it rarely drops below 60FPS.

- more than this single card is overkill on a single monitor. I have over 50 games and about 45 of them run at MAX QUALITY at 60FPS, 1920x1080. (Even Witcher 2 runs at 60FPS with just ubersampling disabled).

- as mentioned, avoid SLI/Crossfire.

- *There's really NO NEED for water cooling the GPU on a well designed card like the one above. My system is VERY QUIET. Water cooling systems also have a pump and fan so they aren't necessarily quieter than a well designed card under load.
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a b U Graphics card
a b K Overclocking
December 8, 2012 5:50:22 AM

Yep, the GTX680 cards are all pretty awesome. I will state again however, the 7950 is more potent than the 660Ti specifically when looking into the AA scenario. The chopped 192-bit memory bus can really play a factor on the card and really shows at resolutions above 1920x1080p. SLi and Crossfire both have microstutter and I can personally vouch for this. My 550's haven't shown much; but it's there regardless. From what I hear, the AMD cards can be worse but I've never seen them in person so I can't vouch for that. Either way, the 660Ti is the 670 with that chopped memory bus. My 550's "should" theoretically scale better than a single 570, however when I start cranking the AA the slowed bus does start to show with dropped frames. It's not the GPU's causing the slowdown either; it's plain and simple the memory not being able to transfer that much at once where the 256 and 384 bus sizes can really just shine. I was lucky enough to see a 7950 Sapphire card in a system almost identical to mine and I drooled, I will be honest about that. At 1080p; you don't need more than just a single one for 99% of games if you're wanting 60FPS.
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