Which GTX 470 should I buy?

Hey guys, I've been using two GTX 260's in SLI but I'm kinda tired of the performance since some games don't seem to do much with SLI so I want to buy a single new card. I'm pretty much set on getting a GTX 470 (I'd love a 480 but too much $$$!). So Newegg has got a 10% deal running right now on any video card so I'm down to these cards:

Sparkle GTX 470 for $225 free ship (Lifetime warranty)

Zotac GTX 470 for $205-208-ish (Rebate + 10% off not sure which comes first) - dunno how good this card is though or how good Zotac support/reliability is.

EVGA GTX 470 SuperClocked $243 after discount free ship - I like EVGA warranty and my two cards are EVGAs right now (Did have some quirks though)

Gigabyte GTX 470 Super Over Clock edition $277 after discount and shipping - I like this for the custom heatsink and the fast clocks on it, runs at 77* C under load compared to 90* C under load for stock GTX 470 - a bit pricey but seems worth it for that reason - but I don't know about Gigabyte's rep with customer service and reliability

What do you guys think? Please advise ASAP, I want to order this card tonight as I have someone buying my old video cards today and need to order the replacement tonight. I'd appreciate it!!
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  1. Wait a couple of weeks for the HD 6950. Either get that or the prices for the current video cards will go down.
  2. I have a 6800 GT I can use as a spare for awhile but it won't do much for me...so how bad are the load temps on a stock card? Are they actually in the 80-90*C range? I get 74*C max load on my GTX 260s in a well cooled case.
  3. Thanks for the heat guide CT, doesn't look as bad as one site was saying (I don't know where they pulled a 90* C load run from then - maybe they got a bad card). Using this 6800 GT is not fun...amazingly so much of what my computer does is apparently dependent on the GPU even on my desktop (Did not realize this - I do now though...). How soon are we talking intro of a new GPU from either side? I have that terrible upgrade fear - buy a 470 and then Nvidia comes out with the 570 or some such (which I wouldn't be able to afford but would knock 470's under the $200 point).

    I have been assuming the GTX 470 would be my de facto choice, but someone I know was adamant on how wonderful the ATI cards are and said I should buy a 5870. Cheapest 5870 would run me $250 after shipping. But the big thing seems to be Eyefinity - which I could care less about as I plan to continue using a single monitor (I'm not rich enough to buy two more high end 24" monitors - I'm content with just one). Benchmarks seem to favour the 470 for FPS at the expense of some heat and extra power - not major issues to me if they're not as big a deal as I was lead to believe they were. I also recall seeing lots of reviews for the 5870s that complained of both the Vertical Screen of Death and Grey Screen of Death. The solutions (or rather lack of) I did not care for as at one point I was about to say phooey on Nvidia after my 260's kept acting up for no reason (Wasn't sure if Nvidia were to blame, or EVGA).

    I'm leaning toward the cheap card now so as not to get a lot of money tied up in this - but I'd really like to buy EVGA for the good customer service + warranty. Another factor to consider - the Zotac card comes with Mafia II free (A game I played already on 360 and did not care for) so I could always sell that and make the card even cheaper - like $183 total cost. Same could be said for the expensive Gigabyte 470 Super Over Clocked - Buy for $278 after 10% discount and shipping, sell the game, end cost is $253 (Assuming like before I sell Mafia II for $25).

    I also ponder what Black Friday sales will arise for said video cards online at places like Newegg. Ugh...so uncertain of what to do. Sure as I buy it now, there will be a fantastic deal come that time - sure as I wait, there won't be anything and the limited time 10% off offer will expire and I'll have to pay more...I'm comfortable in the $300 or less range, any other ideas? I wanted to upgrade from the GTX 260's because I was sick of some games not utilizing SLI and I think something on my end kept making them crash during certain games. I want an upgrade from GTX 260 SLI performance - or very least something close to the same just via a single card solution (since a GTX 480 is probably needed to get a true upgrade). Anything I have neglected to consider?

    EDIT: Here is a heat scale from Anandtech, thought I saw those high temps somewhere that seemed credible

    So my question - is it okay for the 470 to run so hot? I remember an EVGA tech telling me my GTX 260 was okay as long as it was no where near 100* C and seeing that the 470 is really close to that it concerns me. Now that is Furmark, here was Crysis:

    Now my GTX 260 when gaming at those 75*C temps would be running around 50-65% fan speed. Would the GTX 470 be the same or are the fans running faster and it's still that hot? My setup was never too noisy but I do have concern for that with this given the reported load temps.

    EDIT 2: I'm leaning toward this MSI for it's rebate and for the better cooler. Reviews seem to rave for it's much cooler temps and overall quality (can't say the same for many other non-EVGA 470 reviews I read). It's an extra $20-30 over the Zotac price but it seems well worth it for a card that runs much cooler.
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