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GFX Card Suggestion: NVIDIA GTX570 vs AMD HD6970

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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June 30, 2011 1:27:54 AM

Hello,
I recently decided to upgrade my rig, since BF3 is coming out in October, and Crysis 2's DX11 patch got released. This is my current rig:
i7 870 @2.93ghz
MSI N460GTX Hawk @935mhz Core, 1950mhz VRAM
P7P55D-E (CFX ok, SLI no)
Kingston HyperX @ 1333mhz
2x Intel X-25M SSD (RAID0)
2x Hitachi HD @ 7200rpm. (RAID0)
Seventeam 750W PSU

My current Hawk's performance on Crysis 2 DX11 is actually quite pleasing, I get around 25-35fps which is pretty reasonable. However, I know that BF3 will support DX11 and its tesselation features. I want to play the game on MAX and not have horrible fps. Its too early to speculate a card that will run good on that specific game, but still I can't wait to upgrade after the game comes out. By then, I might as well wait for the 7xxx series, which wouldn't come out until Q1 or Q2 next year.
My current choices for GFX cards:
GTX580 - A little out of my budget, and its wattage usage and heat usage are high. I already have 4 HDDs and many other wattage hogging devices, I don't want to max out my PSU, cuz my previous rig had simultaneous shut downs because of over using the PSU.
GTX570 - Under my budget (around 400 dollars), but the performance isn't that great. The general performance of this card over a variety of games is ok.
HD6970 - Most 6970s are right on my budget, performance varies from game to game, therefore I worry that it will perform poorly on BF3. The lack of AMD support from Crysis 2 already worries me. People who have 6970 are getting 20-30fps on the DX11 patch.
HD6950 - Under my budget, but the performance isn't that great.
I am open to suggestions, thank you!
a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2011 1:32:24 AM

You can't really crossfire since it's 16x and 4x (you can but it's a waste).

For a single 1920x1080 monitor the 570 is probably the better choice because it's significantly cheaper.
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a c 598 U Graphics card
June 30, 2011 2:46:55 AM

I have been seeing the GTX 570 at around $300 after rebate and generally are cheaper than 6970's.

A nice chart comparing the GTX 570 and HD6970 in a variety of games and benchmarks. Pick the one that performs better in the games you want to play. Negative values favor the 570, positive values favor the 6970 (click for a larger image):


http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/graphics/display/radeo...
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June 30, 2011 3:11:08 AM

Get the 6970, better performance by far, and you can crossfire! The guy above posted that with only 4 lanes on your 2nd pcie slot it's a waste, but Toms has done some articles recently showing that it hardly makes a difference going from 16 lanes to 8 or 4. Crossfired you would lose maybe 5 frame per second.(Guess, don't quote me!) With the 570 you have no SLI option so in 2 years you're buying another 400 dollar card instead of picking up a 2nd 6970 for 50 bucks on Ebay.
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a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2011 4:34:07 AM

shane799 said:
Get the 6970, better performance by far, and you can crossfire! The guy above posted that with only 4 lanes on your 2nd pcie slot it's a waste, but Toms has done some articles recently showing that it hardly makes a difference going from 16 lanes to 8 or 4. Crossfired you would lose maybe 5 frame per second.(Guess, don't quote me!) With the 570 you have no SLI option so in 2 years you're buying another 400 dollar card instead of picking up a 2nd 6970 for 50 bucks on Ebay.


He just showed a chart where they are neck and neck in performance. Crossfire x4/x16 will be significantly slower than x8/x8:
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/pci-express-scaling-p67-c...

He didn't say his PSU is failing. He said that his PSU from his previous rig failed. If he's worried about power consumption he should stick to a single card (which he should anyways for a single monitor but he didn't specify) and the 570 is the better choice.
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June 30, 2011 10:00:20 AM

My suggestion is to go with Crossfire'd 6850's, they beat a 580 in some benchmarks:

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

Also, about buying another 6970 in 2 years. The Performance per Watt seems to be increasing by 2 to 3 times each year for GPU's, therefore in 2 years time you would be much better just buying the new generation card than going Crossfire. A Crossfire 6970 would be about 3-5 times less powerful than a single card at the same price point in 2 years time.

Not many consider going SLI with their 2 year old 200 series...
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a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2011 10:03:03 AM

CasualNinja said:
My suggestion is to go with Crossfire'd 6850's, they beat a 580 in some benchmarks:

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

Also, about buying another 6970 in 2 years. The Performance per Watt seems to be increasing by 2 to 3 times each year for GPU's, therefore in 2 years time you would be much better just buying the new generation card than going Crossfire. A Crossfire 6970 would be about 3-5 times less powerful than a single card at the same price point in 2 years time.

Not many consider going SLI with their 2 year old 200 series...


Excellent point about crossfiring down the line. I would suggest 460s over the 6850s because they are cheaper and about the same performance wise.
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June 30, 2011 12:16:59 PM

sorry guys, forgot to mention my screen resolution. 1680x1050. Im not planning on upgrading my monitors anytime soon, so yea. and i probably wont be crossfiring either. Like i have said, i hav 4 HDDs, and if i crossfire, i believe 750w wont be enough. Plus i will not get two 6970s, totally out of my budget.
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June 30, 2011 12:26:29 PM

btw @matto17secs. most games that i play aren't listed -.-. BFBC2, Medal of Honor, Crysis 2, Dirt 3, Dirt 2. And like the Unigine Engine favors the 570, which is highly intensive upon DX11. All of the game that favors 6970 are all like a few percent higher, whereas the games that favor 570 are like 20-30 percent higher than 6970. hmm maybe 570 is the better choice in terms of heat, wattage consumption, and price?
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June 30, 2011 12:45:33 PM

You will be very happy with either card as they are very similar, go with the 570 as you have a preference for Nvidia (don't blame you :D  )
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June 30, 2011 1:02:02 PM

does any of u hav 6970s? wats ur opinion about it? does it cope well with the major FPS games which I play the most; like CoD, BFBC2, MoH, Crysis 2, etc. and some racing games too, dirt 2, 3, F1 2010. Cuz looks like im leaning a little towards 570. It looks like 6970 is only good with few games. My last AMD card was a 2900 i think, it overheated so easily. Had it fixed but still overheats every now and then. I kno the new cards will not be the same, but having my current GTX460, the card that I overclock so much, yet still does not break and overheat. But part of that is because it is an MSI (known for stability) and the fan and air circulation is designed better than reference card, and 460 itself gives alot of room for OC. Does the 570 really exceeds the 460 by alot, even compared with my overclocked one?
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June 30, 2011 1:06:28 PM

btw another quick thing, even if i did hav a mobo that supports SLI, i wuldnt crossfire 460. It doesnt share its VRAM, therefore only 1gb of VRAM is available wen SLI. That matters alot when running games with extremely high definition textures.
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June 30, 2011 2:35:18 PM

Your 460 should be enough until BF3, and at that point you can grab one of the new GPU's being released around that point.
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June 30, 2011 3:30:11 PM

but does AMD 7000 come out Q1 next year, along with the gtx 600s?
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Best solution

a c 598 U Graphics card
June 30, 2011 3:39:05 PM

pasta815tim said:
btw @matto17secs. most games that i play aren't listed -.-. BFBC2, Medal of Honor, Crysis 2, Dirt 3, Dirt 2. And like the Unigine Engine favors the 570, which is highly intensive upon DX11. All of the game that favors 6970 are all like a few percent higher, whereas the games that favor 570 are like 20-30 percent higher than 6970. hmm maybe 570 is the better choice in terms of heat, wattage consumption, and price?

Crysis 2 will run better ont the GTX 570.


http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/HIS/Radeon_HD_6970/8...
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a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2011 10:10:44 PM

The GTX460 is still a reasonably fast card at your res, I'd save your money and stand pat for now....
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a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2011 10:30:20 PM

pasta815tim said:
btw another quick thing, even if i did hav a mobo that supports SLI, i wuldnt crossfire 460. It doesnt share its VRAM, therefore only 1gb of VRAM is available wen SLI. That matters alot when running games with extremely high definition textures.

The VRAM isn't nearly as important how fast as the GPU. What good is having VRAM for textures/effects if your GPU can't power it.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-6970-rade...

Notice how even at 2560x1600 when much more than 1GB VRAM is used the GTX 460 SLi still performs as well as the GTX 6970.
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July 3, 2011 8:28:58 AM

I have finally made my mind. After calling like, 10 shops (can't do online purchases), they all said that the all GTX570 was sold out. I chose the MSI Twin Frozr III since many people have said that MSI has great quality and are best for non-reference cards. All of the shops that I had called said it sold out, or didn't sell them; whereas, when I asked for a 6970, they said they had plenty left. I only asked for MSI, but the gtx570 is obviously more popular.
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July 3, 2011 8:30:02 AM

Best answer selected by pasta815tim.
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