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How much do brands matter?

Hi all,

I'm looking at an HD 6870 for a new build gaming rig.

Across the various brands, the prices vary widely from $140 (after rebates) for a Powercolor: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131378
to $180 and up.

How much do the variations in brands matter - are there really any differences? Is there a way to quantify this as not every card has been benchmarked.

Cheers

Josh
16 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about brands matter
  1. JoshWilkinson said:
    Hi all,

    I'm looking at an HD 6870 for a new build gaming rig.

    Across the various brands, the prices vary widely from $140 (after rebates) for a Powercolor: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131378
    to $180 and up.

    How much do the variations in brands matter - are there really any differences? Is there a way to quantify this as not every card has been benchmarked.

    Cheers

    Josh



    Check to see if there are overclocked versions. I've always liked Sapphire. Always get glowing reviews and hardly any RMAs. I've had several Sapphires and never had any issues. I presently have a factory overclocked Sapphire 4890 that researching to replace. I might go with the Sapphire 6950 and flash it to a 6970 or might crossfire...still undecided.

    Don't forget to read the reviews. I saw that quite a few Powercolor cards are being returned (not working).
  2. there are may good and reliable brands they are the same in theory but differ slightly in performace due to many factors( heatsink desgn, material used...) as mikeny said sapphire is top. but there are also many good brands if i were u i would go with xfx due to their double life time warranty. i have one and it runs like a charm
  3. There are differences in brands. Asus is the biggest culprit imo. They go out of there way to change alot of things on the board most of the time. Some of the brands like Asus usualy have problems unless you run the branded drivers that are always monthes behind the current official ATI/Nv drivers.

    Saphire would be the example of "plane jane". They almost always nail it right. Good setup. Nothing cheap about it. Reliable. Then you have companies like EVGA. EVGA is the walmart of everything. Everything they make is super bottom line. They also have the highest rma rate out of everyone in the graphics card industry.
  4. hey jerzeygamer the thing is evga is a topbrand i dont know why ur bashing it this way so is asus can u explain why ur the only person in the world bashing evga and asus
  5. I'm a firm believer in EVGA Nvidia video cards, but I suppose that's just because I like my drivers to work. I see AMD has now got a 11.11c driver update to fix stuttering, shadows and whatever other problems are exhibited in newer games.
  6. Not very much. A brand at most will have a different cooler bolted to a GPU. Unless it's a special edition/expensive model which might have a different PCB as well.
  7. I disagree with jerzey. There is nearly no difference in brands when looking at performance. Nvidia designs the chips, TSMC makes them, and everyone else just plugs the chip into the PCB. When looking at FPS they should all be rather close.

    Extras is what can set cards apart. Some companies offer only 1-3yr warranties while others offer lifetime. Some might be completely stock while others come with exotic cooling setups to keep cards cooler or quieter. Some companies might bundle things with their cards like games or adapters.

    There can be some major differences but they don't happen that often. Sapphire first came to my attention years ago when they got caught selling "9800pros" with a 128bit memory bus. This halved the memory bandwidth and the cards performed no where near where they should. (no, they didn't cut the price on the card at all...) And I think it was powercolor who was selling the GTX460 with the heatsink on the VRMs? Might have been someone else. Galaxy was nice enough to sell an 8800GTX as a 9600GSO. All you had to do as flash an 8800GTX bios onto the card and it was unlocked. These kinds of things happen rarely so for the most part Comp A's XYZ card will perform identical to Comp B's.
  8. ^ but benchmarks sometimes show differance in fps up to 10 which is significant imo
  9. tarekwm said:
    hey jerzeygamer the thing is evga is a topbrand i dont know why ur bashing it this way so is asus can u explain why ur the only person in the world bashing evga and asus


    Im far from the only person who wont buy or build evga and EVGA has been for a long time FAR from a top name brand. They pretty much lost credibility when they shiped 8800gts for over 3 years with the same bad memory modules and then being blacklisted by most builders and major retail outlets because of massive RMA. Mostly all due to EVGA buying the cheapest and lowest quality parts from almost exclusively chinese suppliers. My favorite part was when they sent me 12 4850s missing all the screws for the cowels AND the cooling blocks were not even attached so basicly you took the card out of the box and it fell completely apart with no thermal padding or greece. That was the climax.

    Im not bashing Asus, I am pointing out the difference in brands. And it is true Asus goes out of there way more then any other brand to put there own touches on what they sell. It has its upsides and downsides like anything else. Either way it sets them apart from other brands that almost never go that distance to alter a product.
  10. Quote:
    ^ but benchmarks sometimes show differance in fps up to 10 which is significant imo


    Care to show me one? Any difference would be in the clocks. If you compare Comp A's OC'd card to Comp B's stock card there will be a difference. But they should still be mostly similar. (meaning A's card won't be giving you 90FPS while B's card is only 30.)
  11. tarekwm said:
    hey jerzeygamer the thing is evga is a topbrand i dont know why ur bashing it this way so is asus can u explain why ur the only person in the world bashing evga and asus



    On a side note, I don't like EVGA. I kept quiet because it's just my opinion and I don't know if it's happen to more than a few people. I did see in feedback in newegg that it happens. This concerns the warranty. They say you can get a lifetime warranty if you register your product within 30 days. I did (motherboard) but they still claimed it was registered under another person. I gave them proof as well as proof they requested yet they still claimed it was registered by someone else. Then they claim it was never registered.
  12. Next time you're on Newegg, check the reviews.
    Out of a total of 1,618 GTX 560Ti cards
    EVGA 641 reviews-77.2% 5 egg-5.1% 1 egg
    MSI 559 reviews-64.4% 5 egg-15.5% 1 egg
    Gigabyte 181 reviews-55.8% 5 egg-16.6% 1 egg
    ASUS 149 reviews-61.7% 5 egg-16.1% 1 egg
    PNY 61 reviews-67.2% 5 egg-11.5% 1 egg
    Zotac 27 reviews-55.5% 5 egg-0% 1 egg.

    No, not exhaustive, but enough to convince me that EVGA must be doing something right!
  13. Sapphire I think doesn't have their own drivers. You get ATI's (AMD) driver. When you go on Sapphire's website for updated drivers, it take you to ATS/AMD's drivers.

    On a side note, my present 4890 is the overclocked edition.
  14. So, to summarise - there is no real consensus on what are better quality or lower quality brands. Or whether it matters or not.

    I guess I'll buy the cheapest that gets decent reviews.
  15. Best answer
    JoshWilkinson said:
    So, to summarise - there is no real consensus on what are better quality or lower quality brands. Or whether it matters or not.

    I guess I'll buy the cheapest that gets decent reviews.



    My issue with EVGA is very recent so I'm not sure if my opinion counts on EVGA since Im still seething about their treatment! I've heard recently not to count out MSI and judging from multiple sites, they seem have a very good product. I hear glowing reviews concerning their Afterburner program with their cards. Sapphire I like, I never had any issues with their overclocked 4890 and before that, x1900xtx. . I was reading about their 6950 which many have been RMA'd and DOA also. A caution flag is running thru my head. I'm shocked also. Zotac...seems risky.

    Check out the feeback and check Amazon also. Look at multiple sites that present feedback from people. I could easily say, go with XFX or MSI and then you end up possibly get a bad card...it happens. Look at Delroy's percentage chart. All and all, best thing to do is read feeback from multiple sites. Also check out Tom's Hardware articles. They lliked Gigabyte and MSI's cards.
  16. Best answer selected by JoshWilkinson.
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