APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE:
Would like to purchase within the next month, can hold out for new tech though (7970?)
USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT:
Games at 1920x1200 Resolution, currently BF3, CODMW, SW:ToR on the highest detail settings.
CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY:
Currently running two air cooled cards, a Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2 2GB @ 750MHz/900MHz crossfired with a Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 1GB @ 750MHz/900MHz
Powered by a Rosewill Xtreme 950 Watt PS
Running in 3way Crossfire (confirmed through CCC and monitoring GPU load in games)
OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS:
MB: Asus P7P55D-E PRO
Proc: Intel I5-750 OC'd to 3.8GHz (air cooled)
Mem: 16GB DDR3 GSkill PC3-12800 running at XMP SPD
HD: 128GB Plextor SSD
Case: Rosewill Conqueror WSL
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS:
No preference at this time
OVERCLOCKING: Yes/ Maybe SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes / Maybe
So my situation is this, my current set up is still very viable for most anything I throw at it, I can crank the settings to the max in SW: ToR and enable 4x AA and 8x AF, as well as transparent texture AA, and the game looks absolutely stunning, and runs "fairly well" (~35fps avg, but with dips in the 20's that make it essentially unusable for my typical gaming). The other BIG complaint I have with my current setup is the noise.. that Sapphire X2 is LOUD! It hits peaks of 95 degrees under full load, and that gets that single fan screaming.. I find this to be very distracting considering my case sits on the desk right near me.
One alternative to changing the cards I had would be to consider getting a couple of waterblocks. One dual GPU block for th4e 4870 X2, and either a full face block or single GPU generic block for the 4870. I don't think I would need or want a full watercooling kit to cover the CPU or anything else, and I actually still have an old H20 kit that I could probably get working (has radiator, resevoir, fans etc, would need new hoses, couplings etc). The checking I have done so far however is sort of a downer, as the cheapest I can find just a couple of blocks starts at nearly $300 USD..
I hope that someone is in a similar spot and has any advice or insight on whether to wait it out, or wet it up! My budget isn't too much of a worry, although I wouldn't want anything less than a stellar upgrade in performance/silence if the cost would be more than $500-600.