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Trying to build a new Gaming Rig, please help!

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June 28, 2011 9:16:15 PM

First off, I really hope I posted this in the correct section. So, as will be evident from this post, I am total noob when it comes to hardware, but I've finally gotten the courage to go for it. It's sad that I have over 100 steam games and I can't even run most of them . So, I've been doing a lot of research, and I'd like some advice on what I've chosen. Any input is welcome, please don't hold back. I'm really new at all this so here it goes:

CPU
i7 2600k- $320
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-070-_-Product

GPU
2x GTX260ti SLI 200x2= $400
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-661-_-Product

MotherBoard
Asus P8P67 Pro- $190
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-703-_-Product

RAM
Corsair Vengeance 8GB- $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-180-_-Product

PSU
Corsair HX850 $170
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...rsair%20HX-850

Case
Corsair Obsidian 650D: $190
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16811139006

HDD
Samsung SpinPoint 1TB $65
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...int%20F3%201TB

DVD LiteOn $20
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-289-_-Product

Cooler Thermalright Silver Arrow $63
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-021-_-Product

Windows 7 OEM 64bit $100
Overall: $1598

EDIT: For some reason my links don't work, but I placed another post down in this thread with an updated build. Really sorry, don't know what happened. Here is the new build:

CPU and MOBO
i5 2500k with a P8Z68 PRO MOBO: $410
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Comb [...] mbo.657718

RAM
Corsair Vengeance 8GB- $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-180-_-Product

PSU
Corsair AX850- $190 (For future possible SLI and maybe OCing)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] &Tpk=ax850

GPU
GTX580 Superclocked- $530
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] -_-Product

Case:
HAFX full Tower $190
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] -_-Product

Cooler: $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] -_-Product

DVD $20 HDD $65 Windows $100

Total $1655



So, what do you all think? Will this get me some nice graphics and performence? Also, is installing two cards in sli difficult? I've seen guides online, but they normally only deal with one card, never SLI so I have no idea how to do it (will have to research more). Finally, is going with two GTX560 sli good or would going for a single GTX580 be better? Will I be able to run games like Metro 2033, Crysis 2, and BF3 in the near future?

My budget is ideally 1500 but I can go up to 1700 max. Please help and thanks in advance.

More about : build gaming rig

June 28, 2011 9:55:14 PM

Two 560Ti cards should be quite formidable up thru 1920x1200, easily surpassing a single GTX580.

You could also opt for the 2500k over the 2600k, saving nearly $100, as the former provides 98% of the 2600k's gaming performance, but without a 50% price bump for a 100 MHz clock bump....

I'd think I'd look for a Z68 board over a P67, just in case you decide to dabble in video encoding....
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June 28, 2011 10:18:35 PM

mdd1963 said:
Two 560Ti cards should be quite formidable up thru 1920x1200, easily surpassing a single GTX580.

You could also opt for the 2500k over the 2600k, saving nearly $100, as the former provides 98% of the 2600k's gaming performance, but without a 50% price bump for a 100 MHz clock bump....

I'd think I'd look for a Z68 board over a P67, just in case you decide to dabble in video encoding....


What if I went with a single GTX580 to make my life easier (since I'm not to knowledgeable at this). Would the parts above be suitable to support to 580s sli in the future (if I ever I actually needed it)?

Also, could I just go with the intel stock cooler or should I actually buy an aftermarket one?
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June 29, 2011 2:13:25 AM

FYI: An i5-2500K will do as well as an i7-2600K in gaming.

I'll work with a ~$1500 budget.

CPU: $215 i5-2500K (buy on Amazon). OC to 4.0GHz minimum.

Mobo: $190 AsRock Z68 Extreme4 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: $65 8GB (2x4GB) 1600CL9 DDR3 on Newegg Sales

HDD: $55 Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB on Newegg Sales or $58 on Amazon

Graphics: $640 two Radeon 6970's
Considering Crossfired 6950 2GB's outscale two GTX 570's in SLI, you may as well get dual 6970's. I suggest XFX because of the lifetime warranty.

PhysX: $40 A GT240 or similar GeForce card.

PSU: $140 950W Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, or XFX only. Okay, PC Power & Cooling is good too. You could get one of these for $120 if you find a deal. Corsair's TX series is good enough in my opinion.

DVD: $20 Anything will work well

Case: $190 Anything. I personally have an Azza Solano 1000R I got for the airflow (live int he tropics) for $80. Bottom mounted PSU is a must.

Windows: $100

Cooler: $30 Xigmatek Gaia http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

TOTAL: $1685


You could save $20 if you find a deal on the PSU, $20 if you find a deal on the graphics cards, $40 if you already have a GeForce card (9600GT or better), $90 if you get a non-expensive case, $20 if you find a deal on RAM like Newegg had last weekend ($45 for 8GB), and $5 on an HDD sale.

So you could do a system with identical performance for $1490 if you wanted. Graphics wise, this is ridiculous overkill if you're playing at lower than 1920x1200 resolution and really designed for more than that.

EDIT: changed cooler
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June 29, 2011 2:14:44 AM

Can we stop recommending the 212+. Even at $30 there are better coolers.
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June 29, 2011 2:18:08 AM

There's not much of a point in dual GTX 580's since you'll match them with dual 6970's, more or less. Single though, it does win. But a 6970 will do everything maxed at 1920x1080. What parts to you plan to reuse from your existing machine?

Check out Frosty Tech for cooler info. Maybe you'll want a Tuniq Tower 120 Extreme: http://www.frostytech.com/top5heatsinks.cfm
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June 29, 2011 2:23:37 AM

Oh, okay. What do you recommend that's better for $30? I'll recommend that in the future.
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June 29, 2011 3:16:39 AM

I don't think the Loki beats it (although saving $5 might be worth it). But the Gaia is better and remarkably quiet!
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June 29, 2011 4:05:35 AM

GAIA destroys the 212+. It was the best when it first came out but heatpipe technology isn't anything special these days. It's a good thing since we have lots of great choices for our coolers.
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June 29, 2011 4:12:15 AM

From what I've read, it destroys just about everything on noise. Performance wise, it's only a sliver above the 212+. But I've only seen 775 benchmarks. Perhaps the gap is wider for CPUs with high TDP.
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June 29, 2011 4:19:50 AM

I was caught up in the 212+ hype. It's the loudest thing in my computer (when it's at max RPM).
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June 29, 2011 4:51:14 AM

My CPU fan's the loudest thing too (except for when my GTX 470 gets excited). I'm pretty sure I'm gonna plan more for noise with my next build.
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June 29, 2011 6:51:21 PM

Alright so I've changed things up a bit, here's the new build I'm thinking of doing (thanks for the all info guys); however, I'm still not sure and could use some more input.

Budget: $1500-$1700
Parts Not Required: Monitor, Keyboard, Mouse, etc. Budget purely for the actual PC
System Usage: Gaming, photoshop, internet browsing, very little video editing on Premiere.
Preferred Website: Newegg, Amazon, or any other reliable website you guys can recommend.
Country: US
OC: Maybe
SLI: Not anymore
Resolution: Currently 1440x900 but upgrading to a full HD one soon.
Additional Comments: Would love to have led in the case and sorry for not formatting my original post correctly, hope this is better.

Specs:
CPU and MOBO
i5 2500k with a P8Z68 PRO MOBO: $410
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

RAM
Corsair Vengeance 8GB- $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-180-_-Product

PSU
Corsair AX850- $190 (For future possible SLI and maybe OCing)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU
GTX580 Superclocked- $530
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case:
HAFX full Tower $190
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Cooler: $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD $20 HDD $65 Windows $100

Total $1655

So what do you guys think? Is that better or is there still something missing? I decided to go with a single card in order to avoid the woes of SLI (since it's my first build). Also, just wanna make sure that the cooler will fit well with all the other components or is it too large?
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June 29, 2011 7:13:40 PM

much better than your original post. also, all of the links on your original post dont work
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June 29, 2011 7:22:57 PM

browsingtheworld said:
If you're going to spend that much on a cooler get this instead:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


My only worry is that the Corsair Vengeance RAM might not fit with a larger cooler.. Nonetheless, that cooler looks a lot nicer and more efficient. Do you think it'll fit alright?

@R3xx3r

I really have no idea why the links don't work, checked them yesterday and they worked fine, really sorry about that.
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June 29, 2011 7:36:34 PM

It might use up a slot but you're only using 2 DIMMs.
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June 29, 2011 10:12:57 PM

Best answer selected by jyanez16.
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June 29, 2011 11:47:26 PM

A couple changes:

Get your i5-2500K on Amazon.com (from a highly rated seller) for $210 (w/ shipping and no tax)

ASRock Z68 Extreme4 is just a better moterboard: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/asrock-z68-extreme4...

Corsair Vengeance is expensive, but okay.

The AX series really is overkill. I personally think the TX is plenty good enough. My TX850 was $90 after rebates. That $100 is always better spent on graphics. $630 of dual 6970's absolutely thrashes a GTX 580. Also, can the AX850 handle dual GTX 580s? Yeah...I guess it can...but I don't know if it can handle overclocking everything...yeah it probably could.

GTX 580? At 1400x900, a GTX 560Ti can play pretty much any game maxed out. I just want you to have an idea of what kind of overkill you're talking about here. Get a Radeon 6970 for $300 and spend $200 to upgrade to a 24" LED 1920x1080 monitor. Use the $30 that saves to get a PhysX card (which the ASRock Z68 Extreme4 has the PCI-e slots to run) and you won't be missing any features that GeForce provides over NVidia.

That's a good cooler, but it is LOUD and EXPENSIVE. It's your money, but I can guarantee you that a cooler louder than about 50dB will be audible--of course if you have excellent acoustic dampening, that might not be an issue. But that would also mean your case doesn't have windows, which defeats the point of a great cooler. I suggest the Tuniq Tower 120 Extreme instead. It's cooler, quieter, cheaper, and good looking. Just make sure it fits in your case.

I really think we should talk over your build some more. The build I put together was MUCH faster at gaming at the same price point.

If you save $100, on the case, $90 on the PSU, $40 on the cooler, $10 on the HDD, and $30 on the RAM, which is all very possible, you save $270. That's a 120GB Vertex 3 with no performance lost anywhere noticeable. I cannot, in good conscience, recommend the build you proposed above knowing that you intend to game on a 1440x900 monitor with a GTX 580. I really think you should buy a single Radeon 6970 (since they scale in dual mode so much better than GeForces) and see if that's fast enough for you.

Can you give me a reason you prefer GeForce over Radeon? If not...then do what the benchmarks tell you to do.
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June 30, 2011 1:26:39 AM

dalauder said:
A couple changes:

Get your i5-2500K on Amazon.com (from a highly rated seller) for $210 (w/ shipping and no tax)

ASRock Z68 Extreme4 is just a better moterboard: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/asrock-z68-extreme4...

Corsair Vengeance is expensive, but okay.

The AX series really is overkill. I personally think the TX is plenty good enough. My TX850 was $90 after rebates. That $100 is always better spent on graphics. $630 of dual 6970's absolutely thrashes a GTX 580. Also, can the AX850 handle dual GTX 580s? Yeah...I guess it can...but I don't know if it can handle overclocking everything...yeah it probably could.

GTX 580? At 1400x900, a GTX 560Ti can play pretty much any game maxed out. I just want you to have an idea of what kind of overkill you're talking about here. Get a Radeon 6970 for $300 and spend $200 to upgrade to a 24" LED 1920x1080 monitor. Use the $30 that saves to get a PhysX card (which the ASRock Z68 Extreme4 has the PCI-e slots to run) and you won't be missing any features that GeForce provides over NVidia.

That's a good cooler, but it is LOUD and EXPENSIVE. It's your money, but I can guarantee you that a cooler louder than about 50dB will be audible--of course if you have excellent acoustic dampening, that might not be an issue. But that would also mean your case doesn't have windows, which defeats the point of a great cooler. I suggest the Tuniq Tower 120 Extreme instead. It's cooler, quieter, cheaper, and good looking. Just make sure it fits in your case.

I really think we should talk over your build some more. The build I put together was MUCH faster at gaming at the same price point.

If you save $100, on the case, $90 on the PSU, $40 on the cooler, $10 on the HDD, and $30 on the RAM, which is all very possible, you save $270. That's a 120GB Vertex 3 with no performance lost anywhere noticeable. I cannot, in good conscience, recommend the build you proposed above knowing that you intend to game on a 1440x900 monitor with a GTX 580. I really think you should buy a single Radeon 6970 (since they scale in dual mode so much better than GeForces) and see if that's fast enough for you.

Can you give me a reason you prefer GeForce over Radeon? If not...then do what the benchmarks tell you to do.


Thanks for the heads up on Amazon. Alright, so one question, is crossfiring to HDs difficult? That's my main issues, since I'm new to this, I'm kinda worried. Also, that motherboard you listed, can it support the two 6970s and an extra card for phsx? And also, how exactly do you do that? You place both 6970s crossfired and then just install the other card? Or do I have to connect it with the two 6970s? I think I'm gonna get the gaia cooler you listed above instead of the one I had, since you recommend that and I'll check out the case (though I do really like the HAFX). Seriously man, you've been a big help and I'm looking forward to more advice.. Please, continue helping me especially with that physX issues cause I don't quite get how that would work (2 6970s + an extra card??).

I checked out some 6970 crossfired articles, and it really peaked my interest, I just want to know if it's difficult and how the third card for physX factors in? I really don't mind whether it's Nvidia or AMD as long as it's good and you're def. right, the 6870s are far better. If I can only get one or the other, I'd rather get the two 6970s and no physX or two GTX560s (which is better?)

I plan on running games at full HD, so I'd like to go with crossfire. The 1440x900 is just the crap monitor I have right now, but I've got a separate budget for a new HD monitor (No More 1400x900! HOORAY!!). The 1500-1700 bucks is solely for the PC so feel free to recommend anything within that range. Just those questions I have.
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June 30, 2011 3:03:47 AM

Sure, feel free to keep this thread open or PM me if you have any questions.

Now you'll want to look at Newegg reviews to see if various cases can fit a 6970--it's a long card.

It supports Quad SLI and CrossfireX. That's pretty much plenty of PCI-e lanes to handle all the graphics cards. According to this thread, it shouldn't be a problem to Crossfire and add a PhysX card: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/265601-33-crossfire-p...

When you install NVidia's drivers (which you would have to do for an NVidia card), you select which card does Physics. Select the GeForce card, not the CPU and voila!

GTX 560's are not GTX 560Ti's. GTX 560's compete with 6870's and 6950 1GB's. GTX 560Ti's compete with 6950 2GB's. Here, compare some crossfire vs. SLI scaling:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/GPU11/188

They don't have all the benchmarks, but you should be able to tell that the 6000 series does better in dual mode. 2 6970's>2 6950 2GB's>2 6950 1GB's>2 GTX 570's>2 GTX 560Ti's>2 GTX 560's. My guess is 2 6870's fit in there somewhere between the 560Ti and 560. Now the 6950 1GB doesn't have enough memory to use the resolutions that two of those cards would benefit.

The ASRock Z68 Extreme4 has a lot of PCI-e lanes, so you could do two Radeons plus a PhysX.

As far as a full HD 1920x1080 monitor--a single 6970 can do all of that right now and max out pretty much all games. So I still strongly recommend you only get a single graphics card to start. Then upgrade later on since it will be cheaper in a month or two anyways. My GTX 470 can run almost everything on very high settings (with my 8800GT for PhysX). That matches a GTX 560Ti, which is markedly worse than a 6970. So keep in mind what you're looking to do because you might just be throwing money out the window. Keep in mind that you also can overclock your graphics card if its initial awesomeness is lacking.

At the resolutions where two GTX 580's are useful, their frame buffer is limiting so you'd want the 3GB version. Otherwise, the 2GB frame buffer of the 6970's can help them catch SLI'd GTX 580's in extreme HD (4000x2000) resolutions.

If you were talking about a single card, I would likely be suggesting a GTX 570 for you. However, you want dual cards and Crossfiring the 6000 series thoroughly handles SLI'd 500 series.

There's nothing wrong with a Haf X. It's a great case. I would spend less, but it's your call. I actually spent less and got my case because I live in Guam (tropical island) and need a TON of airflow through my case to keep it cool while overclocked.

EDIT: I also wanted to say that the Corsair TX series is NOT modular. That doesn't matter to me because my case lets me hide all the cables in the back panel. Any Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, or XFX PSU will do. I'd start picking parts up if I were you as they came on sale. Make all your purchases over the course of two weeks.
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June 30, 2011 3:19:55 AM

dalauder said:
Sure, feel free to keep this thread open or PM me if you have any questions.

Now you'll want to look at Newegg reviews to see if various cases can fit a 6970--it's a long card.

It supports Quad SLI and CrossfireX. That's pretty much plenty of PCI-e lanes to handle all the graphics cards. According to this thread, it shouldn't be a problem to Crossfire and add a PhysX card: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/265601-33-crossfire-p...

When you install NVidia's drivers (which you would have to do for an NVidia card), you select which card does Physics. Select the GeForce card, not the CPU and voila!

GTX 560's are not GTX 560Ti's. GTX 560's compete with 6870's and 6950 1GB's. GTX 560Ti's compete with 6950 2GB's. Here, compare some crossfire vs. SLI scaling:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/GPU11/188

They don't have all the benchmarks, but you should be able to tell that the 6000 series does better in dual mode. 2 6970's>2 6950 2GB's>2 6950 1GB's>2 GTX 570's>2 GTX 560Ti's>2 GTX 560's. My guess is 2 6870's fit in there somewhere between the 560Ti and 560. Now the 6950 1GB doesn't have enough memory to use the resolutions that two of those cards would benefit.

The ASRock Z68 Extreme4 has a lot of PCI-e lanes, so you could do two Radeons plus a PhysX.

As far as a full HD 1920x1080 monitor--a single 6970 can do all of that right now and max out pretty much all games. So I still strongly recommend you only get a single graphics card to start. Then upgrade later on since it will be cheaper in a month or two anyways. My GTX 470 can run almost everything on very high settings (with my 8800GT for PhysX). That matches a GTX 560Ti, which is markedly worse than a 6970. So keep in mind what you're looking to do because you might just be throwing money out the window. Keep in mind that you also can overclock your graphics card if its initial awesomeness is lacking.

At the resolutions where two GTX 580's are useful, their frame buffer is limiting so you'd want the 3GB version. Otherwise, the 2GB frame buffer of the 6970's can help them catch SLI'd GTX 580's in extreme HD (4000x2000) resolutions.

If you were talking about a single card, I would likely be suggesting a GTX 570 for you. However, you want dual cards and Crossfiring the 6000 series thoroughly handles SLI'd 500 series.

There's nothing wrong with a Haf X. It's a great case. I would spend less, but it's your call. I actually spent less and got my case because I live in Guam (tropical island) and need a TON of airflow through my case to keep it cool while overclocked.

EDIT: I also wanted to say that the Corsair TX series is NOT modular. That doesn't matter to me because my case lets me hide all the cables in the back panel. Any Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, or XFX PSU will do. I'd start picking parts up if I were you as they came on sale. Make all your purchases over the course of two weeks.


Lots of good info, wow. When I started researching I never thought there would be so many options! Alright, so, were I to go with a single card setup and avoid the hassle and expense of going with two, should I go with AMD or with Nvidia? I've been reading a lot of articles, but there's no clear winner and often times I see a lot of fanboys. Which single card from either of those two would be best? Like you said, I feel it'd be easier if I upgraded at a later time whenever it became necessary. You mentioned the GTX570 and the 6970. I've also read that crossfiring yields better percentage upgards than sli.

Therefore, were I to go with a single 6970, what good card could I use for physx? And after installing both cards, how do I make sure that the main card is the 6970 and not the other physX card? I've looked a lot of building guides and I'm pretty sure I can build the machine, my only real worry is the software and driver part especially that part with using another nvidia to get physX. And is physX really all that great? Or can I pass it up and still get good gaming performance?

Also, when putting the two different cards on the motherboard (AMD and Nvidia) would I have to bridge them in some way or do they go their separate ways?
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June 30, 2011 4:03:27 AM

The link I gave you will give you a good comparison between two individual cards.

Personally, I think the 6970 tops the GTX 570 in the majority of benchmarks (definitely not WOW or Civ V). But it lacks some features like NVidia 3D vision and PhysX. The 6950 tops the GTX 570 in dual mode. So the 6970 beats the GTX 570 in dual mode by a wide margin. If you are planning to add a second card down the road, go with Radeon. You will miss out on PhysX. According to reviews, Radeon's 3D gaming works (not as established as NVidia's), but that only matters if you have an 3D Ready monitor.

These are my opinions.

Of course, quite frankly, you could have a perfectly awesome gaming experience with a single GTX 560Ti/6950 2GB and use a 650W PSU. But your budget allows a faster machine.

It won't help in gaming, but if you like to brag, an i7-2600K is a good bragging CPU.
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June 30, 2011 4:11:27 AM

dalauder said:
The link I gave you will give you a good comparison between two individual cards.

Personally, I think the 6970 tops the GTX 570 in the majority of benchmarks (definitely not WOW or Civ V). But it lacks some features like NVidia 3D vision and PhysX. The 6950 tops the GTX 570 in dual mode. So the 6970 beats the GTX 570 in dual mode by a wide margin. If you are planning to add a second card down the road, go with Radeon. You will miss out on PhysX. According to reviews, Radeon's 3D gaming works (not as established as NVidia's), but that only matters if you have an 3D Ready monitor.

These are my opinions.

Of course, quite frankly, you could have a perfectly awesome gaming experience with a single GTX 560Ti/6950 2GB and use a 650W PSU. But your budget allows a faster machine.

It won't help in gaming, but if you like to brag, an i7-2600K is a good bragging CPU.


I'm leaning towards a single HD 6970 right now, and then one later down the road. I'm not really all that interested in 3D right now... maybe in few years, but for now I don't need it. From what I've read, physX isn't anything too great but I would love to have a good recommendation on what I should get (hopefully a cheaper Nvidia card) for dedicated physX. As for the i7, I think I'll save the money and go with i5 and maybe use the 100 for maybe an extra dedicated physX card. Furthermore, with a single 6970, could I play games like Crysis and Witcher 2?

And Just for clarification,which one would be better (and if possible, why?):

the ASRock Z68 Extreme4:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

or

ASUS P8P67 PRO
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Will the motherboard and card fit nicely in the HAFX full tower case I picked (I'm pretty sure it can, I've seen a few builds and it's long enough... just wondering). Finally, is the RAM I selected good or would you recommend something else that's cheaper (8-12GBs would be good)?
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June 30, 2011 4:51:55 AM

dalauder said:
GTX 560's are not GTX 560Ti's. GTX 560's compete with 6870's and 6950 1GB's. GTX 560Ti's compete with 6950 2GB's. Here, compare some crossfire vs. SLI scaling:

No the 6950 1GB is just as fast as the 2GB version and the 560Ti.

Quote:
Personally, I think the 6970 tops the GTX 570 in the majority of benchmarks (definitely not WOW or Civ V). But it lacks some features like NVidia 3D vision and PhysX. The 6950 tops the GTX 570 in dual mode. So the 6970 beats the GTX 570 in dual mode by a wide margin. If you are planning to add a second card down the road, go with Radeon. You will miss out on PhysX. According to reviews, Radeon's 3D gaming works (not as established as NVidia's), but that only matters if you have an 3D Ready monitor.

Stop giving your personal opinion which is wrong:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/292?vs=306
The 570 and HD 6970 are equal in performance.

3D ready monitor for AMD? What black market do you have access to?
http://www.amd.com/us/products/technologies/amd-hd3d/pa...

This motherboard would work:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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June 30, 2011 6:13:00 AM

Typically PhysX is done with a card around GT 240 specifications, which roughly matches a 9600GT or low end 8800 cards. I imaged a GT 430 would also work. But you'll do best just asking around for a friend with an old 9600GSO or something like that.

A 6970 is a good deal stronger than my GTX 470 and I can run Witcher 2 without problems.

The ASRock Z68 Extreme4 is much better because it has plenty of PCI-e lanes to allow the use of up to 4 video cards (more than 2 in SLI/Crossfire is a waste IMO). Three cards could be useful if two were crossfired and one is PhysX. The P8P67 Pro only

Haf X fits a 6970? Just go to the Newegg page for it and search 6970 in reviews. That's the best way to find out if a given case can fit a specific card. And, yes it can fit it. Any case that says it fits ATX will fit an ATX or mATX board. You only have to look out for EATX or XL-ATX extended/extra large size boards (those generally cost over $300). Small cases might say Micro ATX only. The Haf X can fit all those types though because it's quite large.

4GB can do everything you need. That said, with prices today you may as well go for 8GB if you can afford it. Sign up for Newegg's email list if you haven't already. They will have a sale this weekend with some quality G.Skill or something like that on sale for $75 or less. Two weeks ago, it was $45 for 8GB after rebate.
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June 30, 2011 6:37:22 AM

browsingtheworld said:
No the 6950 1GB is just as fast as the 2GB version and the 560Ti.

Quote:
Personally, I think the 6970 tops the GTX 570 in the majority of benchmarks (definitely not WOW or Civ V). But it lacks some features like NVidia 3D vision and PhysX. The 6950 tops the GTX 570 in dual mode. So the 6970 beats the GTX 570 in dual mode by a wide margin. If you are planning to add a second card down the road, go with Radeon. You will miss out on PhysX. According to reviews, Radeon's 3D gaming works (not as established as NVidia's), but that only matters if you have an 3D Ready monitor.

Stop giving your personal opinion which is wrong:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/292?vs=306
The 570 and HD 6970 are equal in performance.

3D ready monitor for AMD? What black market do you have access to?
http://www.amd.com/us/products/technologies/amd-hd3d/pa...

This motherboard would work:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Dude, that's why I prefaced it with saying it was my personal opinion. I'm allowed to say, "Personally...[state my views]...these are my opinions." I was VERY clear that those we just opinions.

Thanks for making me look at that benchmark again. I skimmed the top couple and thought the 6970 came out on top on more of those. I was remembering AMD's slide that sandwiched the 6900 cards on either side of the GTX 570. But you're right, it's the GTX 570's equal. That still means you should get a 6970 though if you're planning on getting a second card. And the 6950 1GB is better than I thought it was. I have a disposition to shy away from the cut-down versions of cards (like the GTX 460 SE or the 5830). At least I linked the benchmarks for the OP to look at himself.

3D--I wasn't saying much about 3D, just that he'd need a special more expensive monitor. I'm not sure what your black market comment was about.

Yes, that motherboard would work. But I thought this guy was going for high end only. Notice the system and budget he started with? Since that's the case, I have trouble recommending less than the best motherboard since the ASRock Z68 Extreme4 isn't even that expensive. However, that Gigabyte is a great board. And since he isn't a hardcore overclocker, it should be mentioned and considered.

Thanks your input. Having three in the discussion gets more useful ideas out there than two. My advice was partially wrong though, so maybe I shouldn't mind being called out so much. Apparently, I've forgotten a lot in the last two months of half-timing it on these forums. On the other hand, I'm getting work done at work, which is positive too.

EDIT: ASRock Z68 Extreme4 is better than the Gigabyte because... 1) It has four 8x or faster PCI-e lanes. 2) It allows the use of integrated video (handy if your graphics break or you move them to a new computer). 3) It overclocks about 200MHz higher based on the testing I've seen. Is that worth ~$40? I don't know. It's really tough to buy parts when your budget isn't tight at all and you could technically get whatever you want.
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June 30, 2011 9:52:25 AM

LGA1155 can't do Quad CF/SLi.

The 6950 is not cut down, it simply has less RAM. The 460 SE and 5830 both have cores disabled. Both the 460SE and 5830 are actually decent/good cards. They were simply overpriced when they were first released.

If you clicked the AMD link you would notice there are a grand total of 3 monitors that can do 3D for AMD whereas nvidia 3D works on like 50.

The 6970 is better for CF because of the VRAM.

Just wanted to make sure the OP got the relevant and correct information.
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June 30, 2011 11:53:58 PM

Quad CF/SLI--in terms of 4 cards you're right. I was thrown off by ASRock claiming Quad CF/SLI. I looked into it a big more and that's referring to CF/SLI of dual GPU cards. It IS, however, Tri-CF/SLI capable. It does fancy stuff (kinda like an NF200 chip) to add extra PCI-e lanes.

Sorry, you're right about cut down cards. The 6950 1GB is the 2GB's equal if the frame buffer doesn't come into play. I mostly meant to simply acknowledge my bias, which is mostly a result of frustration towards naming schemes where multiple products (especially 8800's and 460's) fall under a single name.

Okay, I thought more monitors worked with AMD, but I guess your point is that me stating NVidia's 3D support is more mature was inadequate. I figured with my comment, he'd just say "Okay, I'm not doing 3D." And I left it at that.

The 6970 CF is better than the GTX 570 SLI because its drivers work better or something to that nature. The frame buffer comes into play in large resolutions though, so that the 6950 2GB CF gets quite a bit better than the GTX 570 SLI and the 6970 CF passes the GTX 580 SLI (in very large resolutions only). But in normal 1920x1080, the 6950 CF still beats the GTX 570 SLI by a little, which is easily justified by the price difference and the 6970 CF wins by a wide margin.

And at the resolutions necessary to make a GTX 580 SLI setup worth it, you need the larger frame buffers so it's worse than the 6970 CF unless you go with the GTX 580 3GB's--which cost significantly more.

The 6970 CF is just plain faster than the GTX 570 SLI. It's not VRAM that makes it better, but VRAM makes it not even close when you go to larger resolutions. If you'd like some benchmarks to support my claims, I can provide them. If you have some benchmarks that indicate a GTX 570 SLI is equal to the 6970 CF, I'd like to see them.
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July 1, 2011 12:14:52 AM

dalauder said:
Quad CF/SLI--in terms of 4 cards you're right. I was thrown off by ASRock claiming Quad CF/SLI. I looked into it a big more and that's referring to CF/SLI of dual GPU cards. It IS, however, Tri-CF/SLI capable. It does fancy stuff (kinda like an NF200 chip) to add extra PCI-e lanes.

Sorry, you're right about cut down cards. The 6950 1GB is the 2GB's equal if the frame buffer doesn't come into play. I mostly meant to simply acknowledge my bias, which is mostly a result of frustration towards naming schemes where multiple products (especially 8800's and 460's) fall under a single name.

Okay, I thought more monitors worked with AMD, but I guess your point is that me stating NVidia's 3D support is more mature was inadequate. I figured with my comment, he'd just say "Okay, I'm not doing 3D." And I left it at that.

The 6970 CF is better than the GTX 570 SLI because its drivers work better or something to that nature. The frame buffer comes into play in large resolutions though, so that the 6950 2GB CF gets quite a bit better than the GTX 570 SLI and the 6970 CF passes the GTX 580 SLI (in very large resolutions only). But in normal 1920x1080, the 6950 CF still beats the GTX 570 SLI by a little, which is easily justified by the price difference and the 6970 CF wins by a wide margin.

And at the resolutions necessary to make a GTX 580 SLI setup worth it, you need the larger frame buffers so it's worse than the 6970 CF unless you go with the GTX 580 3GB's--which cost significantly more.

The 6970 CF is just plain faster than the GTX 570 SLI
. It's not VRAM that makes it better, but VRAM makes it not even close when you go to larger resolutions. If you'd like some benchmarks to support my claims, I can provide them. If you have some benchmarks that indicate a GTX 570 SLI is equal to the 6970 CF, I'd like to see them.

Why do you need 2 6970s or 570s for 1080p?

Again, they are equal in performance in a single card configuration:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/292?vs=306

The 6970s in CF are generally faster than the 570 in SLi but that still depends on the situation. On a 30" 2560x1600 monitor their performance is about the same.
http://www.tested.com/news/radeon-6990-vs-radeon-6970-c...

Seems pretty close to me....
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July 1, 2011 1:39:20 AM

I agree that you that it's completely overkill to Crossfire or SLI cards of this caliber at 1080p. But I think I was clear about that above. I've actually stated that several times and told the OP to buy one card first...then upgrade down the line if he feels the need.

I completely agree that they're equal in single card configurations (lots of punch trading, but no winner).

But I saw very different test results comparing them in CF/SLI: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-6970-rade...

That really is strange how different the results are between the two sites in Metro 2033. I wonder how much AA comes into play in that. I think the frame buffer helps with AA.

Anyways, you can see from the link above what I based my opinions off of. Perhaps some more thorough reviews would compare them better. But the Tom's Hardware review makes it look like if you play with AA on (who doesn't?), the Radeon 6900's are much more cost efficient.
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July 1, 2011 9:50:22 PM

dalauder said:
I agree that you that it's completely overkill to Crossfire or SLI cards of this caliber at 1080p. But I think I was clear about that above. I've actually stated that several times and told the OP to buy one card first...then upgrade down the line if he feels the need.

I completely agree that they're equal in single card configurations (lots of punch trading, but no winner).

But I saw very different test results comparing them in CF/SLI: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-6970-rade...

That really is strange how different the results are between the two sites in Metro 2033. I wonder how much AA comes into play in that. I think the frame buffer helps with AA.

Anyways, you can see from the link above what I based my opinions off of. Perhaps some more thorough reviews would compare them better. But the Tom's Hardware review makes it look like if you play with AA on (who doesn't?), the Radeon 6900's are much more cost efficient.


I'm probably gonna go with a single 6970 for now, as you recommended. I'll buy another one and crossfire late the down the line when I get enough money to afford an Eyefinity 3 montior display. As you said, 1 is enough for now.
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July 2, 2011 4:39:14 AM

The eyefinity stuff is complicated...so you'll need to look into that.
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July 2, 2011 12:44:09 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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July 2, 2011 12:44:25 PM

This topic has been moved from the section CPU & Components to section Systems by Mousemonkey
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