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Used 5970 versus new 6970

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 24, 2011 12:33:11 AM

i found a used sapphire 5970 link on craigslist posted for about $335 which I think is mind-blowing seeing as I was prepared to dish out $380 for an xfx 6970
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

which one is a better buy? It seems like the 5970 is the way to go but I heard there are some problems with the drivers or something? I dont know the details but I know it has something to do with the fact that there're 2 gpu's in the 5970.
does this mean i'll be running crossfire with only one card?

anyways theres the deal and I was wondering what you guys think I should get.

NOTE: the card is still under warranty, faint rattling noise that he didn't bother getting fixed
there are 2 other 5970 ads:
one is a $400 asus card
the other is a $400 xfx black edition

are they worth looking into? I messaged them both and asked for a price match/drop

thanks :D 

EDIT:
the sapphire has unfortunately been sold :( 
however there are still 2 other 5970's that i think are worth looking into
one is an asus 5970 for 400 bucks
the other is an xfx black edition for 450

which is better in your opinion?

More about : 5970 versus 6970

January 24, 2011 12:36:41 AM

i should note that i dont plan on using eyefinity and I also plan to upgrade my computer in the future with 2 cards but thats not till 2-4 years later
will i be able to run 2 dual gpu cards in crossfire?
is a crossfired 6970 better than a crossfired 5970?
is the difference substantial and worth the 2-4 year wait?

thanks
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a c 171 U Graphics card
January 24, 2011 12:46:28 AM

the 5970 will be faster and is a great deal at that price, the downfall is that yes, it is basically crossfire on 1 card. Therefore any game that does not support xfire will run slower than a 6970 and games that dont scale well with xfire may run slower on the dual gpu 5970, heres an example http://www.techspot.com/review/348-amd-radeon-6970/page... Also the 5970 only has 1gb useable memory, athough technically it has 2gb of ram on the card. A gtx570 would be another option you should consider.
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January 24, 2011 1:06:19 AM

Isn't 1 gig sufficient for single monitor gameplay? How many games support crossfire? And I've already chosen the 6970 over the gtx 570 for a number of reasons
Thoughts?
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a c 216 U Graphics card
January 24, 2011 1:42:09 AM

Atm, 1gb is almost always enough at 1920x1200 and below. Above 1920x1200, the 2gb can be handy. Of course as new games come out that are more and more demanding, they may start to need more.

Most games support crossfire, but not all, and some have a few glitches with crossfire. If you play in windowed mode, crossfire doesn't work.

At least if you are forced into using only one of the GPU's on that 5970, it should still have pretty decent power, as it's basically a 5870.

One advantage of the 6970 would be the MLAA which is AA that works on games that don't support any form of AA, and can also be a low performance hitting supersampling type of AA.
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January 24, 2011 2:09:52 AM

Well I only plan to play newer games anyways, and although im glad you shared your opinion, could you clearly state which video card is better?
Also I would like to hear more from others

Thank you everyone, toms hardware is extremely helpful!
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a c 216 U Graphics card
January 24, 2011 2:36:41 AM

xalexon said:
Well I only plan to play newer games anyways, and although im glad you shared your opinion, could you clearly state which video card is better?
Also I would like to hear more from others

Thank you everyone, toms hardware is extremely helpful!


Anyone that says "xxxx card is clearly better" is not giving you all the info you need to make a choice.

I could call either "clearly better" but that depends on what's important to you and what you are willing to live with.

The 5970 is the faster setup, most the time, but not all the time.

The 6970 has 2GB of ram for extreme resolutions, and "could" be of use in the future. Now it rarely helps at 1920x1200 resolutions and below (but it can help on rare occasions).

The 6970 has MLAA now, though I've heard the 5970 will eventually get it. MLAA can be important to you. It might not be.
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January 24, 2011 2:45:32 AM

thanks very much bystander, based on what you said i think ill stick with a 5970 and maybe possibly crossfire it 2-4 years down the line, but wud that be quadfire?

also the sapphire has apparently been sold so whats a better deal:

asus - 400
xfx black edition - 450

xfx has a lifetime warranty but asus has an aluminum shroud (i think)

which one do you guys think I should get? or are those prices not worth getting over a 6970 (which is like $20-70 more expensive so it might be)

keep in mind for either setup im going to buy a single card now and toss in a second one a few years down the line and i dont plan on using eyefinity
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a c 216 U Graphics card
January 24, 2011 3:06:47 AM

xalexon said:
thanks very much bystander, based on what you said i think ill stick with a 5970 and maybe possibly crossfire it 2-4 years down the line, but wud that be quadfire?

also the sapphire has apparently been sold so whats a better deal:

asus - 400
xfx black edition - 450

xfx has a lifetime warranty but asus has an aluminum shroud (i think)

which one do you guys think I should get? or are those prices not worth getting over a 6970 (which is like $20-70 more expensive so it might be)

keep in mind for either setup im going to buy a single card now and toss in a second one a few years down the line and i dont plan on using eyefinity


One word of warning. I should have addressed this before. A 6970 in crossfire is going to scale a lot better than a 5970 in quadfire (you were right, two 5970's would make it quadfire).

I'd much rather have 6970's in crossfire over two 5970's.
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January 24, 2011 3:18:38 AM

awesome so what you're saying is

a 5970 has better performance now with some strings attached
a 6970 has better performance later w/out any strings?

hmm...difficult choice...
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January 24, 2011 1:22:57 PM

Alright guys im completely mixing things up here, i found a 6950 for $290 (asus) as well as a 6970 for $380 (asus), both new. The used $450 xfx 5970 black edition is still there and a $400 sealed new diamond 5970 available as well
which is to you guys the better offer/deal?

asus 6950 - 290
asus 6970 - 380
xfx 5970 - 450
diamond 5970 - 400

keep in mind that i am planning on putting these into crossfire in the future when the prices drop and i do not plan on using eyefinity

p.s. i heard 1 gig version of the 6950 was coming out, should I wait for that if im not using eyefinity? will it severely degrade my performance if at all?

Thanks
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January 24, 2011 1:25:01 PM

note that i want to play on a 24" 1920x1080 monitor
is 1 gig enough memory for that? Will i see a boost i performance with 2 gigs?
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January 24, 2011 1:55:05 PM

i would say to get hd 5970,future will be crossfire,it has directx11 and any thing that 6000series features,why not?its still fastest gpu on the planet and it will max out any thing you can think of.so its much better than 6970.
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