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5870 to 7970, or wait till 7990?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 5, 2012 1:36:47 PM

Hello,

i have recently build a new computer:

i5-2500k @ 4.5 ghz on H100
8gb 1600 corsair vengence ram
ATI 5870 - this is old

i am thinking to upgrade my video card, do you guys think i need to at this moment? 5870 is still solid fast (kinda = geforce 560ti) and i really don't want to pay $500 or so to get the best performance, considering 6970 was only around $350 when launched

i play all the new pc games, sc2, bf3, diablo 3

please advise, thanks guys
January 5, 2012 1:47:10 PM

I guess 7950 is going to be up at $300-$400, I would suggest you wait for that also.
January 5, 2012 1:58:11 PM

hmm, hd 7970 has being a new solid performance get it.
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January 5, 2012 3:05:12 PM

7970 is significantly better than a single 5870. I doubt you'll have use for a 7990, especially on a 1080p monitor.
January 17, 2012 1:42:33 AM

well i play games on a 55" 1080p sharp led tv, do you think the 7970 or 7990 is an overkill for 1080p resolution with no 2nd monitor?
January 17, 2012 7:40:54 AM

7990 is definitely overkill on 1080p, get the 7970 you'll max out everything you throw at it :) 
January 17, 2012 8:58:33 AM

I am in the same boat. I have a 5870 with a gaming overclocked profile of 980/1250 that plays on my 59 inch and when wife won't let me there, back to my two 24" 1920x1200 LCD's.

My friend has a i7-2500k running at 4.5 with a 580 GTX 3gig. He runs BF3 in Ultra with 4xMSAA anywhere from mid 40's to 60's during multiplayer. I have a Q9650 @ 4.39 now ( 1.39 vcore ) and a 5870. I play BF3 in Ultra with all the same settings but no MSAA ( it kills my performance of course ) but I'm pulling mid 50's to over 70. I want to get the 7970 or 580 really bad, ( 7970 now that the performance is better than the 580) but I cannot for the life of me justify upgrading to a 7970 just so I can turn on MSAA. Without it, ( MSAA ) I am still as smooth, if not smoother gameplay than the 580. So right now, holding off to see what the future brings. My 775 system has been rock solid for me for 4 years now.
January 17, 2012 1:33:20 PM

A second 5870 would be cheaper and offer significantly better performance than a 7970 :) 

I'm running a pair of 5850s and it looks like there's still no reason for me to upgrade. BF3, 1920x1080, Ultra with 4xMSAA averages over 60, although I like to run 2xMSAA just to reduce any frame drops - not like it looks any worse.

However, one of my next upgrades will be a 2560x1440 monitor, and then I'll be a little short on power.

But, yeah, 7970 @ 1080p is basically going to crush anything you throw at it. That card is really meant for either large ass monitors like 2560x1440/1600, or eyefinity.

For $550, you might be better off with a pair of 6950s or 560 Tis.
January 17, 2012 2:33:32 PM

The HD 7990 is going to be very expensive. I don't think you could justify that purchase over your HD 5870 which is a great card.
January 17, 2012 2:58:20 PM

2539674,8,614406 said:
A second 5870 would be cheaper and offer significantly better performance than a 7970 :) 



From my research a 7970 is faster than 5870's Crossfired. A single 580 performs around the same as Crossfired 5870's.

My question is: Does anyone have some numbers to throw at me for their BF3 multiplayer experience running two 5870's @ 1080p ( or 1980x1200 ) on Ultra with 2XMSAA and 4XMSAA? I just don't know if I want to spend $150-200 for a second 5870 just to turn on MSAA for less performance than I'm getting now ( 50-70fps on Ultra with no MSAA ).
January 17, 2012 3:25:42 PM

I have a GTX 580 which is about on par with 2 HD 5870's and with 4x MSAA turned on I get anywhere from 40-70+ frames.
January 17, 2012 3:29:52 PM

Uh, no, there's literally no way 5870s are slower than a 7970. My 5850s perform almost equally at 1080p to a 7970, and they are slower than 5870s. I know these comparisons aren't perfect, but it's a pretty good look at it. Different systems and all that, but my cards are OCed and if I compare GPUZ performance, my memory bandwidth is equal to stock 5870s while my core texture fill rate is lower.








January 18, 2012 5:16:21 PM

wolfram23,

Check out the Tomshardware article on the 7970, it shows very different numbers. Those screen shots also are of DX10 titles, the BF3, Crysis 2, Batman AC show very different numbers. Toms has the 7970 besting the 580 everytime and even beating the 6990 and 590 in some titles/rez's. From Toms opinion, it's the 7970 on top of the 5870's.
January 18, 2012 5:18:56 PM

Also, just a heads up, 1080p rez is 1920x1080. 1920x1200 isnt 1080p.
January 18, 2012 5:42:10 PM

tydalwave said:
wolfram23,

Check out the Tomshardware article on the 7970, it shows very different numbers. Those screen shots also are of DX10 titles, the BF3, Crysis 2, Batman AC show very different numbers. Toms has the 7970 besting the 580 everytime and even beating the 6990 and 590 in some titles/rez's. From Toms opinion, it's the 7970 on top of the 5870's.


I agree, a single HD 7970 will probably give a more consistent level of performance.

OP - because you already have an HD 5870, adding a second one will be much cheaper and will grant you similar performance. I think you should add another one if you are not satisfied with your current system instead of spending $500+.
January 18, 2012 5:46:56 PM

No kidding. But that's the only benchmark I could find that has those specific games in a short period of time.

I did say the comparisons weren't perfect. But, it's only an 11% change in total pixel area.

For example, 54.8x1.11=60.8. I got 56.1. Well guess what? That's not a big difference, and 5870s are faster than my cards.

A 7970 is nice, but the cost over a second 5870 is pretty huge for little to no gains.
January 18, 2012 8:49:05 PM

I really want to crossfire this 5870, but I cannot find ANY under 200 bones. That's alot for 2 gens behind :/  I was bidding on one on Ebay but got outbid ( bids went up to $214 ) So my next plan is possibly sell my 5870 ( Asus EAH5870 Version 2 ) and use that money to get the next upgrade. If I squeeze $200 outta this card, maybe I can get into a 7970 for $350.
January 18, 2012 8:59:11 PM

Yeah, that's not bad.
January 19, 2012 5:14:38 PM

@ OP

get single HD 7970 you have such an outstanding stuff don't waste anymore you had clearly mention "i play all the new pc games, sc2, bf3, diablo 3 " then i'm 100% sure a single HD 7970 is best bet for each and every game with maximum setting and highest resolution if possible.
January 19, 2012 5:53:30 PM

that chart shows the 5970 performing better than a 7970? A. that doesn't make sense B. if that's true im going to be pretty pissed about getting a 7970 being delivered tomorrow!!

The way I look at it is do you want to spend say 250$ on another outdated video card and run them in SLI which will take more power to run and produce more heat or.. Get a new 7970 and ya pay twice as much but then down the road in a year you can get a 2nd 7970 and run them in SLI

just my 2 cents
January 19, 2012 6:03:27 PM

I would get the 7970 instead of another 5870.
While the 5870 in crossfire will be better in some games, games where crossfire doesn't scale well will be worse, and newer DX11 titles (Arkham City), that use tesselation and other DX11 features do not run well on the 5870. A 7970 will definately help turn the DX11 eye candy on. The 7970 also has quite a it of overclocking headroom, so you can crank up the clocks in you need extra performance down the road.
January 19, 2012 6:23:59 PM

Just more comparisons for fun:



7970 = 7600 GPU score.

My 5850s = 7853 GPU score at 870/1200 http://3dmark.com/3dm11/526273
My 5850s = 8775 GPU score at 985/1210 http://3dmark.com/3dm11/526616

So... 7970 is a safe bet with great performance. CF 5870s are the cheaper and faster bet, with possible CF/driver/stutter issues.

I don't really think much more has to be said. Sell the 5870 for maybe $150-200 and spend $350-400 on a 7970, or buy a used 5870 for a couple hundred.
January 19, 2012 6:29:35 PM

wolfram23 said:
and spend $350-400 on a 7970


you mean $550-600 if you are buying one right now. I think 559.99 is the lowest I saw on NewEgg for the regular cards and about 600 for the only variation right now the XFX Dual Fan Black edition. ^_^
January 19, 2012 7:51:07 PM

sorry but jchurch83, did you read the couple words before the quote misunderstood?

Read the whole sentence. I'll repost it :D  "Sell the 5870 for maybe $150-200 and spend $350-400 on a 7970, or buy a used 5870 for a couple hundred."
January 19, 2012 11:07:11 PM

tydalwave said:
sorry but jchurch83, did you read the couple words before the quote misunderstood?

Read the whole sentence. I'll repost it :D  "Sell the 5870 for maybe $150-200 and spend $350-400 on a 7970, or buy a used 5870 for a couple hundred."



Aah sorry was at work so I wasn't reading as deep, didn't put the math in the equation
March 15, 2012 8:14:22 AM

i can telll you first hand. bf3 aax4 ultra settings i push anywhere from 40-70fps but the stuttering makes the game unplayable. i wish i would have got 1 power card
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