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7970 or SLI 2x560 TI

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February 1, 2012 4:24:37 AM

I bought most of a build from microcenter today, except the graphics card.
I'm leaning pretty hard into the 7970, but the sales rep at microcentter was
telling me to go with dual 560 TI's. He said these are cheaper and faster
than the 7970. Anyone know the down low? Thanks,

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More about : 7970 sli 2x560

February 1, 2012 4:34:25 AM

They might give a stock 7970 a run. Once you get your 15-30% free overclock out of the 7970 however it's game over.

Not to mention you're going to over double the power consumption and heat all while cutting off any future upgrade path. You then have to look at issues associated with SLI and Crossfire like micro-stutter, slower driver support and even after all this time, there are still games that just don't work well with it.

This is bad advice in my opinion. If you want to save a little cash give the $450 7950 a look. With its overclocking it's capable of reaching or even surpassing a stock 7970.
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a b U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 8:08:45 AM

7970.

Low power consumption, incredibly powerful card, still leaves option for future upgrade (add a second 7970 ;-) )
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February 1, 2012 12:43:38 PM

Awesome. I think I'm going to wait for the Asus Direct CU 7970. It should be out
any minute.

http://rog.asus.com/70892012/news/asus-radeon-hd-7970-3...

AdrianPerry said:
7970.

Low power consumption, incredibly powerful card, still leaves option for future upgrade (add a second 7970 ;-) )

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a b U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 12:55:09 PM

For the sake of future proofing definitely go with the 7970, I plan to crossfire in the future once this next gen of silly games consoles hits.... >(
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a c 78 U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 1:49:22 PM

7970 hands down.

"but the sales rep at microcenter "
^that thar's your problem
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a b U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 1:55:58 PM

7970. Microcenter wants to scam you and feed false info.
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a b U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 1:59:46 PM

560Ti could be an option if you already own one and dont want to spend $600.
However 7950 is out as well and it has great overclocking potential matching stock 7970.
So one thing that matters the most is at what resolution do you play. if it is only 1080...then 7970 is overkill.
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February 1, 2012 2:27:47 PM

If you can afford the 7970 there's no question.
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February 1, 2012 2:39:20 PM

7970.. 3gigs of vram = win/future proofing.
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February 1, 2012 3:08:58 PM

I'm currently at 1920x1200 but I'll be adding 2 more monitors
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a c 162 U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 3:42:03 PM

SLI or Crossfire produce stuttering. Also, the frame rates tend to dip low more frequently than a similarly powerful, single card.

SLI/Crossfire is generally not recommended.

Also 2x1GB still only means a total of 1GB of VRAM (they CLONE the same data), whereas the HD7950 has 3GB.

POWER:
Not only is the HD7000 series much more efficient in gaming use, but idle power is far, far lower for the HD7950 than two GTX560Ti's.

There's still nothing wrong with a single GTX560Ti. It's quite powerful, but if price isn't an issue than the HD7950 will definitely make a difference.

The GTX560Ti still stutters playing Batman Arkham City, especially when gliding throughout certain parts of the city. The HD7950 is far, far smoother.
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a c 230 U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 4:04:40 PM

The sales rep is quite correct...... here's the fps numbers from Guru3D test suite. Note that I am using the factory OC'd 560's @ 900Mhz because they come with the bigger coolers, more robust VRM's and are within $5 or $10 of the reference models. The factory OC'd models (900Mhz) still have plenty of OC room, getting as high as 1070 Mhz.

http://www.pureoverclock.com/review.php?id=1201&page=17

Twin 560 Ti
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

COD-MW 218
Bad Company 2 98
Dirt 2 134
Far Cry 2 153
Metro 2033 49
Dawn of Discovery 123
Crysis Warhead 87
Total 862


Single 7970
COD-MW 166
Bad Company 2 75
Dirt 2 105
Far Cry 2 102
Metro 2033 44
Dawn of Discovery 122
Crysis Warhead 61
Total 675

For comparison purposes, twin factory OC'd 6950's TwinFrozr) gives a total of 759 fps....and the reference 560 in SLI gets 792 fps

One 7970 = $0.83 per frame ($560/675 fps)
Two Cu II TOP 560 Ti's = $0.53 per frame ($460/862 fps)
Two Twin Frozr 6950's = $0.63 ($480/759 fps)

In short, twin 560 Ti's will be 28% faster (on average in the above games) and cost $100 less. The 7970 costs you 57% more per frame than the twin 560's. Two Twin Frozr 6950's get 759 fps.... that's 12% more than the single 7970 and it comes at $80 less.

The 7970 OC's about 21%
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-7970-overclock-...

Those 560's can OC as much as 30% over reference as shown above, or about 20% over the factory OC.

So what it comes down to is getting the 28% more fps now and saving $100 or having the ability to spend another $560 later for CF'd 7970's....I tried to look up the scaling performance of the 7970 but many of the sites I found had issues with CF on the 7970's so I gotta reserve comment there...... I expect these will be resolved with driver fixes in the coming months.

http://www.pcper.com/reviews/Graphics-Cards/XFX-Radeon-...
http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/video-cards/50610-...

Now for a bit of why my own personal outlook has changed....

I have been "future-proofing my builds since the 1980's. And what I finally accepted was that I was spending extra money for "upgrade options" that neither I nor the peeps I built for ever quite followed through on. In year's past, I would always opt for the single top end card figuring I'd buy a 2nd card later. But what I found from experience, is that when I was ready to buy that 2nd card .....

a) I wasn't saving much money
b) I was oft having trouble finding an identical match
c) I was more likely to do a complete new build w/ new generation cards in the very near future by the time I found a "need" for the 2nd card....the 295 build never got a 2nd card, the 480 builds never got second cards, the 5970 builds never got 2nd cards.

Of late however, when I have the choice of buying a single 580 for $500 or two 900 Mhz 560 Ti's for $430-460, it was a "no brainer" as I was getting a 40% performance boost from the getgo over the 580 .....for less money. So just as I most often drop down to the 2nd fastest CPU, cutting my CPU costs by big bucks, I have also dropped down to the 2nd or 3rd fastest cards and putting them in SLI / CF simply because I get a lot more performance for significantly less money and ...... historically, I was finding it hard to justify adding that 2nd hi priced card "down the road" when by then the system was 2 years old and I envisioned keeping the system for just another 12-15 months.

Getting back to your situation ..... In short, the sales rep is absolutely correct......the twin 560's certainly offer significantly higher performance at a substantially lower price .... today.

Long term, it's harder question. Yes, a single 7970 does leave the door open .... an expensive door..... to increase fps to I'd guess around 1150 fps (I assumed 170% scaling....69xx series was good for 155% on average) .....but is getting 133% of the 560's performance worth 245% of the investment in the twin 560's ($460 versus $1,120) ? That's a very individual decision....and it also holds true for the top card in nVidia's camp.....I can't make a price / performance case for buying a 580 or 680 at 1920 x 1200 either.








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a c 230 U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 4:14:03 PM

photonboy said:
SLI or Crossfire produce stuttering. Also, the frame rates tend to dip low more frequently than a similarly powerful, single card.


I think if you read the THG article on the topic carefully you will see that:

a) The experience differs greatly between SLI and CF
b) The problem is primarily associated with cards in the <$200 segments.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-geforce-stut...

Quote:
SLI/Crossfire is generally not recommended.


http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...

Quote:
Best PCIe Card For ~$470: Tie
2 x Radeon HD 6950 1 GB in CrossFir
2 x GeForce GTX 560 Ti in SLI


Quote:
The GTX560Ti still stutters playing Batman Arkham City, especially when gliding throughout certain parts of the city. The HD7950 is far, far smoother.


I have yet to experience this w/ twin 560 Ti's @ 980.....even playing on 120 Hz monitor in 3D mode w/ PhysX enabled. Just recently downclocked the cards from 1020 Mhz to keep temps below 80C when the tower was moved from desk to the floor.
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February 1, 2012 4:20:09 PM

2502976,13,34832 said:
The sales rep is quite correct...... here's the fps numbers from Guru3D test suite. Note that I am using the factory OC'd 560's @ 900Mhz because they come with the bigger coolers, more robust VRM's and are within $5 or $10 of the reference models. The factory OC'd models (900Mhz) still have plenty of OC room, getting as high as 1070 Mhz.

http://www.pureoverclock.com/review.php?id=1201&page=17

Twin 560 Ti
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

COD-MW 218
Bad Company 2 98
Dirt 2 134
Far Cry 2 153
Metro 2033 49
Dawn of Discovery 123
Crysis Warhead 87
Total 862


Single 7970
COD-MW 166
Bad Company 2 75
Dirt 2 105
Far Cry 2 102
Metro 2033 44
Dawn of Discovery 122
Crysis Warhead 61
Total 675


LOL COD MW made up that difference and LOL 60fps is the money any more is over kill and not used or needed or seen.You cant add up totals like you did and try and pass it off a tangible LOL cause its just not accurate.
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a b U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 4:36:44 PM

I would choose the single video card setup.

As Gordon Freeman said as long as you can hit 60 FPS on the mode you want to play on then the it doesn't matter if you can get 300 FPS because your eye won't see much difference.

The single 7970 should be able to easily get a good FPS on pretty much anything.

Dual card setups use way more power which isn't factored into the video card price, it requires you to buy a bigger PSU which is more money down the drain, it creates greatly more heat which makes the internal parts perform worse, very often the top most video card breaks because of not getting enough air intake, and to top it all off the 2x video card setups can hit you with really annoying micro stuttering problems. Oh and don't forget that there can be configuration problems too, not every game works perfectly with SLI/CF.

All those problems are avoided with a 1x setup.
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February 1, 2012 4:49:09 PM

Raiddinn said:
I would choose the single video card setup.

As Gordon Freeman said as long as you can hit 60 FPS on the mode you want to play on then the it doesn't matter if you can get 300 FPS because your eye won't see much difference.

The single 7970 should be able to easily get a good FPS on pretty much anything.

Dual card setups use way more power which isn't factored into the video card price, it requires you to buy a bigger PSU which is more money down the drain, it creates greatly more heat which makes the internal parts perform worse, very often the top most video card breaks because of not getting enough air intake, and to top it all off the 2x video card setups can hit you with really annoying micro stuttering problems. Oh and don't forget that there can be configuration problems too, not every game works perfectly with SLI/CF.

All those problems are avoided with a 1x setup.

CF/SLI bugaboos are largely over hyped and easily mitigated for the most part but ya the power and heat aand extra cost is a big factor I agree cause OP would need a more expensive PSU and possible a better case with more room and better airflow is in order as well. The people that seem to be bashing the pitfalls that are largely not there or very minor about CF/SLI are mostly people that have never used SLI/CF before and they are effectively scaring people away from a great high end gaming experience that only two cards can provide allot of time for cheaper.
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a b U Graphics card
February 1, 2012 5:50:01 PM

It isn't cheaper. It is only cheaper if you are one of those people that doesn't like to factor in all the costs and you just want to look at the sticker price.

The MSRP for a 60 MPG Prius starts at $23,530 and the MSRP for a 2012 Ford Transit Connect Wagon is $23,235 with 22 MPG.

Are you trying to say the Prius would be the more expensive car to own and operate in this case?

There is nothing at all cheaper about getting 2x worse video cards as compared to 1x of a better one.

If you attribute the entire cost of the video cards to it, inclusive of power bills and the additional cost for the better PSU that you wouldn't have to pay with a 1x setup, AND all the other associated costs, the FPS for your buck belongs to 1x setups, not 2x, 3x, or 4x.

Math that says anything different is shortsighted at best.

The only reason to run 2x of anything is if you can't get the needed performance with 1x or if you for some reason have too much money and you want to help power companies stay in business.

The 7970 will get will get about 36 FPS in Metro 2033 on a 2500k for a full system wattage of about 400. The 6990 with 2 processors on one card (a reasonable proxy for a 2x card setup) will get about 48 FPS for a full system wattage of about 545.

Assumption train INC: Assuming ONLY 20 hours a week of gaming, and a power cost of 23 cents per KWH, that is about $120 a year to power a 6990 and about $70 a year to power the 7970. Assume you keep the setup for 5 years. That is $250 extra tacked onto the cost of the 6990 without factoring in a bigger PSU or any of that other stuff.

The costs aren't going to come out any different for other setups using 2+ GPU cores. If it can beat the 7970 FPS then it will cost more over 5 years than the 7970 does.

You don't even need to "try out" SLI in order to "scare away" people from "a great experience". Your average 3rd grader can do this math. Not like multiplying and adding is hard.

If people want to have "a great gaming experience" (which is somehow not possible with 1 high end video card), they should at least understand what they are getting into.

Glossing over serious long term costs is not going to help in that regard. Nor is glossing over very real configuration problems.

Every hour they spend trying wrangle with their SLI setup to get it to work right adds an effective $20 to the cost of the 2x setup if the person makes $20 an hour since they could have otherwise spent the same time doing something more productive instead (like working).
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February 1, 2012 6:01:42 PM

2503062,18,1011000 said:
It isn't cheaper. It is only cheaper if you are one of those people that doesn't like to factor in all the costs and you just want to look at the sticker price. If you already have a Crossfire or SLI mobo and 700watt = PSU than 6870 CF is same power as 7970 for as low $320


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February 3, 2012 8:39:31 PM

You can compare specs on 560TI SLI and 7970 here

http://www.gpureview.com/show_cards.php?card1=663&card2...

560's kill on pixel fill rate, but otherwise 7970...



Manufacturer: AMD
Series: Radeon HD 6k
GPU: Tahiti
Release Date: 2011-12-22
Interface: PCI-E 3.0 x16
Core Clock: 925 MHz
Shader Clock: 925 MHz
Memory Clock: 2750 MHz (5500 DDR)
Memory Bandwidth: 264 GB/sec
FLOPS: 3788.8 GFLOPS
Pixel Fill Rate: 29600 MPixels/sec
Texture Fill Rate: 118400 MTexels/sec


Manufacturer: nVidia
Series: GeForce GTX 500
GPU: GF116
Release Date: 2011-03-15
Interface: PCI-E 2.0 x16
Core Clock: 900 MHz
Shader Clock: 1800 MHz
Memory Clock: 2050 MHz (4100 DDR)
Memory Bandwidth: 196.8 GB/sec
FLOPS: 691.2 GFLOPS
Pixel Fill Rate: 43200 MPixels/sec
Texture Fill Rate: 57600 MTexels/sec

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February 3, 2012 8:52:21 PM

Alright so heres the deal. 7950/7970= new architecture, PCIe 3, Lower power consumption, Lower Heat, 3gb ram, room to improve performance with new drivers, total awesomeness.

2 560 ti = massive heat, massive power consumption, micro-stuttering, no PCIe 3.

Getting 2 of the last gen cards would be like putting an old engine in a brand new car, not smart. Get the 7970/50 Enjoy the awesomeness that it is, when you need more add another and still decimate.
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February 3, 2012 8:57:54 PM

mourice12 said:
Alright so heres the deal. 7950/7970= new architecture, PCIe 3, Lower power consumption, Lower Heat, 3gb ram, room to improve performance with new drivers, total awesomeness.

2 560 ti = massive heat, massive power consumption, micro-stuttering, no PCIe 3.

Getting 2 of the last gen cards would be like putting an old engine in a brand new car, not smart. Get the 7970/50 Enjoy the awesomeness that it is, when you need more add another and still decimate.

Your way off base and PCI 3 is not available currently and who cares when PCI 2 does not hold back a 7970 in any way shape or form. Two 560ti SLI will be performing at or above 7970 and the SLI 560ti cost under $500
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a b U Graphics card
February 3, 2012 9:20:15 PM

I already explained why 2x 560TI costs more in the long run than the 7970.

Get good at math, please.
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February 3, 2012 9:29:06 PM

Texture fill is more important than pixel fill, and the power usage is much nicer on the 7970. If the 7970 didn't exist, I'd be pairing 560 TI's or maybe 560 TI 448.

Now the question is XFX Black or Asus DirectCU.
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February 3, 2012 9:32:11 PM

Raiddinn said:
I already explained why 2x 560TI costs more in the long run than the 7970.

Get good at math, please.

It has already been debunked on the cost of power theory for a gaming rig and there is not that much difference between 7970 and 560ti SLI power bill LOL. To put it simple 560ti SLI is FASTER than a single 7970 and being that OP already payed for an SLI ready rig 560ti SLI is cheaper and faster than a single 7970 for OP. OP could switch his home to Green energy efficient light bulbs and turn them off when not in use to easily mitigate the small cost as per month/years that running a couple of GPUs a few's hrs a week may inhibit but OP most likely will not even notice or care about the next to nothing hit to his power bill. If you Wanna Play you gotta Pay
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a b U Graphics card
February 3, 2012 9:37:11 PM

If the OP is trying to game for 2 hours a week, you are right, the 560TIs may be the better deal.

If he is any sort of real gamer and intends to spend at least 20 hrs a week on it, the 560TIs won't be cheaper.

There is no point to talking about using energy efficient lighting because a 7900 series card doesn't keep you from using energy efficient lighting. Using a 7900 series card also doesn't mean you have to leave lights on in your house when you aren't in the room.

Any of that stuff you do can be done equally well regardless of which video card option is chosen.

I agree that the 2x 560 TI will probably do more FPS in most games, but at a higher $ cost in the long run. If that is what the OP wants that is his thing.

Just do me a favor and quit trying to use stupid arguments to show the 2x 560TIs cost less, though.
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February 3, 2012 9:45:13 PM

Raiddinn said:
If the OP is trying to game for 2 hours a week, you are right, the 560TIs may be the better deal.

If he is any sort of real gamer and intends to spend at least 20 hrs a week on it, the 560TIs won't be cheaper.

There is no point to talking about using energy efficient lighting because a 7900 series card doesn't keep you from using energy efficient lighting. Using a 7900 series card also doesn't mean you have to leave lights on in your house when you aren't in the room.

Any of that stuff you do can be done equally well regardless of which video card option is chosen.

I agree that the 2x 560 TI will probably do more FPS in most games, but at a higher $ cost in the long run. If that is what the OP wants that is his thing.

Just do me a favor and quit trying to use stupid arguments to show the 2x 560TIs cost less, though.

It still does not matter because OP is obviously taking interest in gaming as a priority in his life therefor if OP was interested in saving money over years of gaming cause of a power bill that goes up by pennies a month he would not have been looking to spend over $600 on a single GPU LOL.
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a b U Graphics card
February 3, 2012 9:51:41 PM

Are you back on the gaming for 2 hours a week thing again?

It isn't going to be pennies a month if you are doing more than that.

Also, the 560TI isn't even clearly superior to the 7970.

2x video card setups can be hit with awful micro-stuttering problems that make 90 FPS feel more like 20 FPS. 1x setups never have these problems. A flat 60 FPS with no stuttering beats 90FPS with stuttering any day.

If he overheats his top card and blows it up, that will probably make him happy with the 560 TIs... Another problem not encountered with 1x card even close to as often.
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February 3, 2012 9:58:43 PM

Raiddinn said:
Are you back on the gaming for 2 hours a week thing again?

It isn't going to be pennies a month if you are doing more than that.

Also, the 560TI isn't even clearly superior to the 7970.

2x video card setups can be hit with awful micro-stuttering problems that make 90 FPS feel more like 20 FPS. 1x setups never have these problems. A flat 60 FPS with no stuttering beats 90FPS with stuttering any day.

If he overheats his top card and blows it up, that will probably make him happy with the 560 TIs... Another problem not encountered with 1x card even close to as often.

We are talking a 70watts discrepancy here between 560ti SLI and 7970 which is the equivalent of one old school light bulb so by just replacing OPs home with high efficiency light bulbs he would actually be saving money in the long run even with an SLI 560ti rig so lets not get fickle and make a mountain out of a mole hill.
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February 3, 2012 11:10:32 PM

/popcorn
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a b U Graphics card
February 3, 2012 11:38:13 PM

Again you are being completely misleading.

There is "only" a difference of 70 between 1w and 71w too and the latter is 71x that of the former.

A reasonable full system wattage for a 7970 system is 390w while playing a regular game. A reasonable full system wattage for 2x 560TI twin frozr cards while playing a regular game is 630w.

I don't know how you get "only 70w" out of this, but it is probably the same place where power is free and gamers play only 2 hours a week.

In the world the rest of us live in, that is 62% more power.

Those numbers for the SLI 560 TI Twin Frozrs could quite possibly be conservative too in terms of what comes out of the wall. It is more likely that the 7970 PC will be putting an optimal 50% load on the PSU than the SLI 560TI Twin Frozrs will.

The 7970 may be looking at 85-88% efficiency while the SLI 560 TIs might be looking at more like 82%. That could add another dozen watts to what the SLId 560 TIs are pulling that isn't calculated above.

That is with an apples to apples XFX Pro 650w Core for the same system with either card setup.

Unless you are talking about increasing the PSU wattage which I haven't heard you mention as an additional expense anywhere.

For the record, here are some links to back up the real world performance results of what we are talking about

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5261/amd-radeon-hd-7970-r...

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2011/02/21/msi_n560gtx_t...

For each 2400w that a computer uses in a day, it will be about $350 tacked onto the full year power bill, depending on where you live and the costs of grid power.

The 2x 560TI Twin Frozrs will eat through this in under 4 hours. The 7970 will eat through it in over 6.

Say for the sake of argument that the OP gets in a good 4 hours on weeknights and manages 11 hours a day of gaming on the weekends. That would come out to 6 hrs a day avg.

The 7970 would be looking at $350 for the year with this schedule. With this schedule the 2x 560TIs would be looking at $565 for the year.

That is a $200 difference in the first year alone. Far more than enough to blow through all of the "savings" from running 2x 560TI Twin Frozrs.

Add that $200 difference per year for a hypothetical 5 year lifespan for the gaming PC and that is $1000 you are paying to run SLI 560s instead of a single 7970.

Subtract off the $100 more the 7970 costs over the SLI 560TIs and you are looking at a cost difference of $900 or as much as most people's entire computer budget when they come in here and buy whole computers.

These are not pennies like you are talking about in your little fantasy land.

BTW, that 4 hrs per weekday and 11 hrs per weekend day, that is potentially conservative. I know a whole lot of gamers that play games more than 42 hrs a week. When I was in my prime as a kid I sometimes did 42 hrs between the time I got off work on Friday until the time I went to work on Monday without counting the 6+ hrs a day I was playing on the other week days.

If the OP plays 60 hrs a week instead of 42 you can kick the $1000 for 5 years up to $1500 for 5 years flushed down the toilet.

Suddenly the 7970 is looking a whole lot better.

- Edit - Clarity
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February 4, 2012 7:08:17 AM

Raiddinn said:
Again you are being completely misleading.

There is "only" a difference of 70 between 1w and 71w too and the latter is 71x that of the former.

A reasonable full system wattage for a 7970 system is 390w while playing a regular game. A reasonable full system wattage for 2x 560TI twin frozr cards while playing a regular game is 630w.

I don't know how you get "only 70w" out of this, but it is probably the same place where power is free and gamers play only 2 hours a week.

In the world the rest of us live in, that is 62% more power.

Those numbers for the SLI 560 TI Twin Frozrs could quite possibly be conservative too in terms of what comes out of the wall. It is more likely that the 7970 PC will be putting an optimal 50% load on the PSU than the SLI 560TI Twin Frozrs will.

The 7970 may be looking at 85-88% efficiency while the SLI 560 TIs might be looking at more like 82%. That could add another dozen watts to what the SLId 560 TIs are pulling that isn't calculated above.

That is with an apples to apples XFX Pro 650w Core for the same system with either card setup.

Unless you are talking about increasing the PSU wattage which I haven't heard you mention as an additional expense anywhere.

For the record, here are some links to back up the real world performance results of what we are talking about

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5261/amd-radeon-hd-7970-r...

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2011/02/21/msi_n560gtx_t...

For each 2400w that a computer uses in a day, it will be about $350 tacked onto the full year power bill, depending on where you live and the costs of grid power.

The 2x 560TI Twin Frozrs will eat through this in under 4 hours. The 7970 will eat through it in over 6.

Say for the sake of argument that the OP gets in a good 4 hours on weeknights and manages 11 hours a day of gaming on the weekends. That would come out to 6 hrs a day avg.

The 7970 would be looking at $350 for the year with this schedule. With this schedule the 2x 560TIs would be looking at $565 for the year.

That is a $200 difference in the first year alone. Far more than enough to blow through all of the "savings" from running 2x 560TI Twin Frozrs.

Add that $200 difference per year for a hypothetical 5 year lifespan for the gaming PC and that is $1000 you are paying to run SLI 560s instead of a single 7970.

Subtract off the $100 more the 7970 costs over the SLI 560TIs and you are looking at a cost difference of $900 or as much as most people's entire computer budget when they come in here and buy whole computers.

These are not pennies like you are talking about in your little fantasy land.

BTW, that 4 hrs per weekday and 11 hrs per weekend day, that is potentially conservative. I know a whole lot of gamers that play games more than 42 hrs a week. When I was in my prime as a kid I sometimes did 42 hrs between the time I got off work on Friday until the time I went to work on Monday without counting the 6+ hrs a day I was playing on the other week days.

If the OP plays 60 hrs a week instead of 42 you can kick the $1000 for 5 years up to $1500 for 5 years flushed down the toilet.

Suddenly the 7970 is looking a whole lot better.

- Edit - Clarity

Your not very smart there is 70watts max load differential between 560ti SLI and 7970 on the same rig all other parameters not being changed and my power bill has not tangibly changed in the 2 years I ran an HD 4890 CF rig with Phenom II x4 940 which takes considerably more power than any of these systems in question I understand from real time experience the cost of running rigs. OP is a gamer which means instead of spending $3500+ a year on partying and going out etc he will be at home gaming in turn 560ti rig will save him money plus he can mitigate it even further and save more by investing in green light bulbs etc. http://www.hwcompare.com/11292/geforce-gtx-560-ti-vs-ra...
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February 4, 2012 7:13:08 AM

Raiddinn said:
Again you are being completely misleading.

There is "only" a difference of 70 between 1w and 71w too and the latter is 71x that of the former.

A reasonable full system wattage for a 7970 system is 390w while playing a regular game. A reasonable full system wattage for 2x 560TI twin frozr cards while playing a regular game is 630w.

I don't know how you get "only 70w" out of this, but it is probably the same place where power is free and gamers play only 2 hours a week.

In the world the rest of us live in, that is 62% more power.

Those numbers for the SLI 560 TI Twin Frozrs could quite possibly be conservative too in terms of what comes out of the wall. It is more likely that the 7970 PC will be putting an optimal 50% load on the PSU than the SLI 560TI Twin Frozrs will.

The 7970 may be looking at 85-88% efficiency while the SLI 560 TIs might be looking at more like 82%. That could add another dozen watts to what the SLId 560 TIs are pulling that isn't calculated above.

That is with an apples to apples XFX Pro 650w Core for the same system with either card setup.

Unless you are talking about increasing the PSU wattage which I haven't heard you mention as an additional expense anywhere.

For the record, here are some links to back up the real world performance results of what we are talking about

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5261/amd-radeon-hd-7970-r...

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2011/02/21/msi_n560gtx_t...

For each 2400w that a computer uses in a day, it will be about $350 tacked onto the full year power bill, depending on where you live and the costs of grid power.

The 2x 560TI Twin Frozrs will eat through this in under 4 hours. The 7970 will eat through it in over 6.

Say for the sake of argument that the OP gets in a good 4 hours on weeknights and manages 11 hours a day of gaming on the weekends. That would come out to 6 hrs a day avg.

The 7970 would be looking at $350 for the year with this schedule. With this schedule the 2x 560TIs would be looking at $565 for the year.

That is a $200 difference in the first year alone. Far more than enough to blow through all of the "savings" from running 2x 560TI Twin Frozrs.

Add that $200 difference per year for a hypothetical 5 year lifespan for the gaming PC and that is $1000 you are paying to run SLI 560s instead of a single 7970.

Subtract off the $100 more the 7970 costs over the SLI 560TIs and you are looking at a cost difference of $900 or as much as most people's entire computer budget when they come in here and buy whole computers.

These are not pennies like you are talking about in your little fantasy land.

BTW, that 4 hrs per weekday and 11 hrs per weekend day, that is potentially conservative. I know a whole lot of gamers that play games more than 42 hrs a week. When I was in my prime as a kid I sometimes did 42 hrs between the time I got off work on Friday until the time I went to work on Monday without counting the 6+ hrs a day I was playing on the other week days.

If the OP plays 60 hrs a week instead of 42 you can kick the $1000 for 5 years up to $1500 for 5 years flushed down the toilet.

Suddenly the 7970 is looking a whole lot better.

- Edit - Clarity

Those links you posted are from two completely different rigs genius. 1x 560ti - 170Watts TDP - 1x 7970 = 250Watts TDP
http://www.hwcompare.com/11292/geforce-gtx-560-ti-vs-ra...
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a c 271 U Graphics card
February 4, 2012 9:05:28 AM

Raiddinn really has spewed some stool water in this thread. :pfff: 
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February 4, 2012 9:39:10 AM

Mousemonkey said:
Raiddinn really has spewed some stool water in this thread. :pfff: 

See I am not anti Nvidia at all I am anti overpriced hardware and 7970 are overpriced right now Nvidia FTW in this context here and lets hope Kelper will offer some earth shattering value and efficiency then I will the biggest Green team Bigot there is. 70 watts LOL me smells something here and will be interesting to see his counter claim cause I would love to be proven wrong and I could be wrong who knows it has happened many times before.
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a b U Graphics card
February 4, 2012 12:50:01 PM

Mousemonkey said:
Raiddinn really has spewed some stool water in this thread. :pfff: 


Apparently closing threads is what you do better than understanding math and making points. Maybe you should go back to doing that. Sounds to me like you need another moderator to look after you when you get around to posting actual messages.

If you continue to compare my data backed up responses with what you compared them to, I will be forced to mention it to others at TH.

Gordon Freeman - Even if I was going to accept your "theoretical TDP" math (the one with "theoretical" in the name), where do you get 70w from? Even the math you showed is an 80w difference and it is only 1 card, not 2. It is also, in my experience, not the most common 560TI in use among high end gamers and not the most commonly SLId 560TI among hard core gamers so your "theoretical" math is probably not even applicable.

The "different systems" are pretty equal in terms of power usage, so unless you want to show me some real math about the difference in power these two systems use, that is a non-starter like all your other arguments.

Either one of you can go ahead and try to find "better" data to support your shared opinion. The arguments you are both using (or lack thereof) are both not in any way relevant to real world scenarios whereas all of mine is.
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a c 271 U Graphics card
February 4, 2012 1:11:14 PM

Raiddinn said:
Apparently closing threads is what you do better than understanding math and making points. Maybe you should go back to doing that. Sounds to me like you need another moderator to look after you when you get around to posting actual messages.

If you continue to compare my data backed up responses with what you compared them to, I will be forced to mention it to others at TH.

Gordon Freeman - Even if I was going to accept your "theoretical TDP" math (the one with "theoretical" in the name), where do you get 70w from? Even the math you showed is an 80w difference and it is only 1 card, not 2. It is also, in my experience, not the most common 560TI in use among high end gamers and not the most commonly SLId 560TI among hard core gamers so your "theoretical" math is probably not even applicable.

The "different systems" are pretty equal in terms of power usage, so unless you want to show me some real math about the difference in power these two systems use, that is a non-starter like all your other arguments.

Either one of you can go ahead and try to find "better" data to support your shared opinion. The arguments you are both using (or lack thereof) are both not in any way relevant to real world scenarios whereas all of mine is.

This post is a prime example of how little you know, my experience of living with a dual GTX560Ti rig is nothing like what you have described hence why I know you just spewing bum gravy in huge amounts. :lol: 
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February 4, 2012 1:13:32 PM

Raiddinn said:
Apparently closing threads is what you do better than understanding math and making points. Maybe you should go back to doing that. Sounds to me like you need another moderator to look after you when you get around to posting actual messages.

If you continue to compare my data backed up responses with what you compared them to, I will be forced to mention it to others at TH.

Gordon Freeman - Even if I was going to accept your "theoretical TDP" math (the one with "theoretical" in the name), where do you get 70w from? Even the math you showed is an 80w difference and it is only 1 card, not 2. It is also, in my experience, not the most common 560TI in use among high end gamers and not the most commonly SLId 560TI among hard core gamers so your "theoretical" math is probably not even applicable.

The "different systems" are pretty equal in terms of power usage, so unless you want to show me some real math about the difference in power these two systems use, that is a non-starter like all your other arguments.

Either one of you can go ahead and try to find "better" data to support your shared opinion. The arguments you are both using (or lack thereof) are both not in any way relevant to real world scenarios whereas all of mine is.

One 560ti = 80Watts less TDP than one 7970 as proven @ this like I once provided here's #2 http://www.hwcompare.com/11292/geforce-gtx-560-ti-vs-ra... so if you can do the simple addition of 170Watts max TDP of one 560ti x2 = 340Watts max TDP for SLI 560ti = 90Watts discrepancy MAX between a 7970 and 2 560ti in SLI which is nothing to write home about at all. PS this is not a shared opinion this is the cold hard facts bro and I am mostly a Radeon fan FYI.
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a b U Graphics card
February 4, 2012 3:24:31 PM

Mousemonkey said:
This post is a prime example of how little you know, my experience of living with a dual GTX560Ti rig is nothing like what you have described hence why I know you just spewing bum gravy in huge amounts. :lol: 


Apparently, your SLI 560 TIs haven't taught you how to make points during the time you have owned them. How about you lay out the actual impact your SLI 560TI computer has on your power bill, point out your price per KWH, and all that instead of just trolling.

Gordon Freeman - There is nothing cold hard facts related about theoretical numbers based on specification sheets. On the other hand, there is something cold hard facts related about actual measured power in real world applications. Also, I am clearly talking about a more commonly used 560TI that doesn't have the same power usage as the low end version you are talking about.

Two of those clearly do add to 630w for the test system. That is why they wrote it in the link that I posted.
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February 4, 2012 4:39:59 PM

Isn't time to just agree to disagree? None of this is really helping the OP, it just makes the entire forum look like bickering opinionated asses. Not that I'm taking anyone's side, I just think that maybe it's time to move beyond the arguments.

At the end of the day the OP needs to make the decision they feel is going to give them the best value for their money, if that's either the 7970 or the 560ti SLI it doesn't really matter as long as they're happy.
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February 4, 2012 5:12:08 PM

Btw i wasnt way off base, i was way on base. PCIe 3 will be available with Ivy Bridge, but no one knows what thay will do.
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February 4, 2012 5:48:15 PM

Raiddinn said:
Apparently, your SLI 560 TIs haven't taught you how to make points during the time you have owned them. How about you lay out the actual impact your SLI 560TI computer has on your power bill, point out your price per KWH, and all that instead of just trolling.

Gordon Freeman - There is nothing cold hard facts related about theoretical numbers based on specification sheets. On the other hand, there is something cold hard facts related about actual measured power in real world applications. Also, I am clearly talking about a more commonly used 560TI that doesn't have the same power usage as the low end version you are talking about.

Two of those clearly do add to 630w for the test system. That is why they wrote it in the link that I posted.

TDP for all 560ti is 170watts look it up it is commonly known knowledge here in the TH community I will get you started with just a few links /specifications http://www.tested.com/news/tested-nvidia-geforce-gtx-56...
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-6950-1gb-vs-gef...
http://www.hwcompare.com/11292/geforce-gtx-560-ti-vs-ra...
http://www.geforce.com/Hardware/GPUs/geforce-gtx-560ti/...
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a b U Graphics card
February 4, 2012 8:28:51 PM

a4mula said:
Isn't time to just agree to disagree? None of this is really helping the OP, it just makes the entire forum look like bickering opinionated asses. Not that I'm taking anyone's side, I just think that maybe it's time to move beyond the arguments.


There is a clearly right answer about which is cheaper, it is just being obscured by people who don't know how to do math.

Per the specifications, a 6 pin PCIE connector can provide 75w and the PCIE port itself can provide 75 more W, that means the 560TIs can pull at least 225w if they want to. The specifications for PCIE power don't rate these 6 pin connectors aggressively because they want to blow up video cards. That is why people can OC cards with 2x 6 Pin PCIE connectors to use beyond the 225w theoretical maximum.

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors....

All I am asking is that they concede the point that 2x mid range cards doesn't have a lower total cost of ownership than 1x a higher card and that it is pretty misleading to make the statements they are making.

For one, it clearly says this on Nvidia's webpage (the one linked by an "opponent")

The below specifications represent this GPU as incorporated into NVIDIA's reference graphics card design. Graphics card specifications may vary by Add-in-card manufacturer. Please refer to the Add-in-card manufacturers' website for actual shipping specifications.

Because they said this applies ONLY to the reference designs. As if manufacturers strictly stick to those.

And this from the same webpage

GTX 560 Ti 448 Cores Limited Edition Maximum Graphics Card Power (W) 210 W

which quite clearly refutes their own points.

I clearly posted a link showing that 2x MSI 560TI Twin Frozrs used 438w on the video cards as tested and somehow we are still arguing that the max wattage for one is 170w using "theoretical" math based on "reference designs".

- Edit - Typo
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February 4, 2012 8:39:44 PM

Raiddinn said:
There is a clearly right answer about which is cheaper, it is just being obscured by people who don't know how to do math.

Per the specifications, a 6 pin PCIE connector can provide 75w and the PCIE port itself can provide 75 more W, that means the 560TIs can pull at least 225w if they want to. The specifications for PCIE power don't rate these 6 pin connectors aggressively because they want to blow up video cards. That is why people can OC cards with 2x 6 Pin PCIE connectors to use beyond the 225w theoretical maximum.

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors....

All I am asking is that they concede the point that 2x mid range cards doesn't have a lower total cost of ownership than 1x a higher card and that it is pretty misleading to make the statements they are making.

For one, it clearly says this on Nvidia's webpage (the one linked by an "opponent")

The below specifications represent this GPU as incorporated into NVIDIA's reference graphics card design. Graphics card specifications may vary by Add-in-card manufacturer. Please refer to the Add-in-card manufacturers' website for actual shipping specifications.

Because they said this applies ONLY to the reference designs. As if manufacturers strictly stick to those.

And this from the same webpage

GTX 560 Ti 448 Cores Limited Edition Maximum Graphics Card Power (W) 210 W

which quite clearly refutes their own points.

I clearly posted a link showing that 2x MSI 560TI Twin Frozrs used 438w on the video cards as tested and somehow we are still arguing that the max wattage for one is 170w using "theoretical" math based on "reference designs".

- Edit - Typo

Mod mouse owns 560ti SLI rig and I have owned SLI and CF rigs in the past and two ((( Reference ))) 560ti in SLI is (( 320WATTS MAX TDP )) Nvidia designed and build the card not you I think they would know what they are talking about.
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a b U Graphics card
February 4, 2012 8:45:34 PM

Gordon Freeman said:
Mod mouse owns 560ti SLI rig and I have owned SLI and CF rigs in the past and two ((( Reference ))) 560ti in SLI is (( 320WATTS MAX TDP )) Nvidia designed and build the card not you I think they would know what they are talking about.


How do you reconcile the fact that the manufacturer's own reference design page that you pointed out says 210w for the 448 core version if all 560TIs have an absolute max of 170w?
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February 4, 2012 9:21:13 PM

Raiddinn said:
How do you reconcile the fact that the manufacturer's own reference design page that you pointed out says 210w for the 448 core version if all 560TIs have an absolute max of 170w?

There is no debate about the 560 ti being 170Watts max TDP and it has been confirmed and reconfirmed by all the major publications and Nvidia themselves LOL I am intrigued at how hard you hold onto your false sentiments.
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