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What would you buy - 2 GTX465's or a HD6950

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 29, 2011 5:06:40 PM

I am looking upgrade my graphics card for the 3rd time in my life. I have gone from a TNT2 Ultra to a 9800gtx and now I am looking to once again upgrade. I am happy with the performance of the card I have but I am beginning to notice that it is getting less stable with age and with BF3 coming out soon I would like to be able to play the game with some of the eye candy turned on and up.

I have been checking around and I have narrowed my choices to either running 2 465's in SLI or getting a 6950 and unlocking it.

Here are my current systems specs:

P5N-T, Q9650 oc'd to 3.9, 8 gigs of ram, 500 gigs SSD RAID 0 OS/Swap File, 2 TB primary storage, 2 27' asus 1080p displays, 1000W PSU

My current system usage in order of importance: app development for iOS and android, Blender, Premier Pro CS5, Gaming (Bad Company 2, BF3 when it comes out, Source engine based titles)

If you were about to be making a purchase and were looking for the biggest bang for your buck, what would you choose to do here? I think the 465's in SLI would deliver a considerable punch but the 6950 is slightly more future proof. I will also be moving more and more into GPGPU computing development so that is a consideration as well, although not a very important one.

My personal feeling is to just get the 2 465's but I would like some input before I make a decision.

Thanks.

More about : buy gtx465 hd6950

a b U Graphics card
July 29, 2011 5:12:58 PM

I'm sure the two GTX 465's are stronger but wouldn't it cause major heat issues, seeing how you're SLI'ing AND using cards that are known for being hot?

Also not all 6950's can be unclocked to a 6970.

I say its better to go with a single 6950 and Xfire'ing that later on.
a b U Graphics card
July 29, 2011 5:21:49 PM

^ agreed.

When you want to upgrade an SLI system, you will have to start from scratch. They can't be MUCH more powerful than a 6950, so it won't last you more than a year or so.

On the other hand, when your 6950 starts struggling in a year or a little less, just buy another 6950, which will be dirt cheap by then, and extend the life of your system.
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a c 271 U Graphics card
July 29, 2011 5:34:21 PM

phishy714 said:
^ agreed.

When you want to upgrade an SLI system, you will have to start from scratch. They can't be MUCH more powerful than a 6950, so it won't last you more than a year or so.

On the other hand, when your 6950 starts struggling in a year or a little less, just buy another 6950, which will be dirt cheap by then, and extend the life of your system.

Maybe but not necessarily.
a b U Graphics card
July 29, 2011 5:40:38 PM

Has anyone bothered searching if his motherboard supports crossfire? He is on an nvidia chip set. http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_775/P5NT_...

Buy one gtx560ti witch is around 6950 performance. SLI another one later. Or buy gtx570 and sli another one later, depending on your budget.

Also gtx465 is not such a great card, it has high temperature and you will have problems when used in SLI, even more if you overclock.
EDIT: typo.

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a b U Graphics card
July 29, 2011 5:40:47 PM
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I have 2 GTX 465s in SLI, they are bad ass and destroy pretty much any single GPU card out there, especially at DX11 tesselation, but they are very hot and noisy and use lots of power. I live in Texas and get cheap co-op power, blast the a/c and play at pretty high volume levels so it's not an issue for me, but for most people the 6950 is probably a better choice even though 465s are signifigantly faster.



July 29, 2011 5:47:45 PM

If I go with the 6950 - will I have issues with my motherboard being based around the n-force chipset?

I am planning on upgrading my motherboard/cpu/ram once the sledgehammer based cpu's are released if they provide a compelling enough reason to from a performance/price standpoint. Also, it is ok to purchase the same model card down the road and use it to SLI? I remember a time where I had to go to some length to purchase a pair of pentium pro cpu's that were from the same production run because the tiny differences between runs was enough to potentially cause headaches. Going SLI/Crossfire down the road concerns me because...well..I'm old. If it's not an issue then I would be much more inclined towards getting the 6950 now and then getting another one if/when I need it.

As for unlocking the 6950 into a 6970: I have heard some rumors that newer versions of the boards are shifting away from the reference designs or that AMD has locked out the ability to unlock by flashing the bios. Is there any credibility to this?
a b U Graphics card
July 29, 2011 5:51:14 PM

There is no issue running AMD cards on nvidia chipset motherboards, except obviously you can't run crossfire on an nvidia SLI board.

Yes it's ok to purchase the same model card at different times, I'm running one EVGA card and one Palit card, as long as they have the same GPU it's not a problem.

Yes there is credibility to this, the flashable cards are getting rare.
a b U Graphics card
July 29, 2011 5:53:08 PM

You won't be able to use crossfire so not dual AMD cards, just Nvidia.

If you use just one 6950, then no problem.

There is no problem if you buy another card after 1/2-1 year let's say. Also the video cards can be moved to the new platform when and if you upgrade.

bensky, you ware faster than me :D  .

Also if you buy the new platform before you buy the second video card you can buy any of them and chose the motherboard that supports crossfire and/or sli.
August 8, 2011 12:10:49 AM

Best answer selected by DonkeyGravy.
a c 271 U Graphics card
August 8, 2011 2:50:45 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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