Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

7970 Overkill

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
Share
January 9, 2012 8:50:29 PM

Hello all I am in the process of building my first custom gaming pc and was thinking about the new amd 7970 for my gpu, but is this card overkill for gaming only playing at 1080p? I want to be able to play everything on ultra settings including battlefield 3, the withcher 2, and any game that comes out in the next 2 or 3 years. If not the 7970 because of overkill what would u suggest? I was really thinking of going to nvidia because I have amd now and it seems to have a lot of problems all of which I have fixed expect the damn black border I get with company of heroes. I am also looking into sli if I go nvidia, but I am steal leaning to the 7970. My price range is no more than 600, but would like to stay around 500 to 550 dollars.

More about : 7970 overkill

January 9, 2012 8:53:39 PM

The 600 to 500 price range is for the gpu only not the whole system obviously.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 9, 2012 8:54:47 PM

for 600 id go for 6950 crossfire
m
0
l
Related resources
January 9, 2012 8:56:02 PM

The best thing for you is a GTX 580.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 9, 2012 9:02:24 PM

yeah might be able to get a 580 on the cheap if you wait a while
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 9, 2012 10:21:44 PM

I would go with the 7970 (but wait for nice fan designs like the MSI Twinfrozr). Drivers can only make this beast better from now on and overclocking potential is huge. If you decide to go with Nvidia, don't go with the 3gb GTX 580 as 1.5gb of vram is plenty for 1080p. You just have to decide if you want to spend the extra 100$ on the 7970, I personally would if I was to upgrade. See you on the battlefield ;) 
m
0
l
January 9, 2012 10:51:30 PM

I think im going to wait maybe a month longer and see how much the 580 drops in price, but still leaning to the 7970. Maybe being the key word.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 9, 2012 11:02:56 PM

If you can wait until march, I read there will be a 1.5gb 7950 which you might want to consider.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
a b 4 Gaming
January 9, 2012 11:03:16 PM

if not in a rush the new 600 series will be out for nvidia in late March or April, which will hopefully put AMD back in their place. But if you want the best then the 7970 is the card for you. If you want something pretty damn awesome, the go with 2 580s in SLi
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 12:20:25 AM

whatever you do, dont buy the 580, thats old generation now. either buy the 7970 or wait for the 600 series. i'd strongly recommend buying the 7970 while the prices are still low. they are far better than a 580 3gb and still cheaper.
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 2:07:45 AM

tutstuts said:
whatever you do, dont buy the 580, thats old generation now. either buy the 7970 or wait for the 600 series. i'd strongly recommend buying the 7970 while the prices are still low. they are far better than a 580 3gb and still cheaper.


You know what I thinks thats the best advice so far.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 2:33:36 AM

Agreed. The 7970 beats the 580 by a good 30-50% depending on what you are doing, so you will be future proofed for 3 years or so.
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 4:01:24 AM

Just to play Devil's Advocate, I'll go with Overkill.

While there is no doubt that the 7970 represents the most powerful single-gpu card today, do you really need 1080 @ Ultra @ 70 fps?

For $340 you can grab a 570 that will push BF3 @ 50fps on Ultra. Anything above 26fps our eyes don't render regardless and while 60 fps is the target goal, this is only to prevent low fps dips from creating stutter effects.

The 580 has never been a great value when you consider that it's 150-200 more than the 570 and only provides ~10-15pct gains over the 570.

BF3 and Metro2033 are really the Crysis' of this gaming generation. They are some of the first DX11 games, and let's face it optimization will only get better. I don't see games in the next year or two being as taxing as these games are, just as few games were created after Crysis for DX10 that pushed systems they way it did.

Either way I think you're best suited to give the 7970 some time to settle as it should have an affect on the prices of other cards.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
a b 4 Gaming
a b À AMD
January 10, 2012 10:01:04 AM

The 7970 is overkill for 1920x 1080 but will most likely not be in 2-3 years, but it may be cheaper in the long run to get a 6950 or 570 now and add a second one or upgrade to a more powerful card in 1-2 years which may cost less and give better performance overall than getting a card now for what games need in the future.
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 10:41:50 AM

a4mula said:
Anything above 26fps our eyes don't render regardless and while 60 fps is the target goal, this is only to prevent low fps dips from creating stutter effects.

Hate to say it but that's not correct. There is no magic number for fps for the human eye/human brain. That 26 may be some average number people got in the labs from many different test subjects, but that's not true for all humans. And even then that was probably the number they got where humans couldn't distinguish between fps. Every human have different sets of eyes and a different brain, and they all work in different ways and at different efficiency. People do not see in fps but rather in fluid motion. When something moves too quickly, we blur it. You can easily see the blur by moving your hand quickly. Computer screens are not fluid but rather they show images in quick succession to give the illusion of movement. With some of the more recent technology (high frame rate cameras and high frame rate monitors that are 300+ fps) humans can actually see movement without the blur (for most people, the blur doesn't appear on monitors because there's no actual movement, its just pictures shown in rapid succession to show movement) and when this occurs at really high frame rates (200-300+) humans can actually get headaches/become ill. (note, this is not true for ALL people, some [few] people will actually see a blur at high fps, though this is somewhat rare)

Its true that quite a bit of people will not notice the difference between 30 fps and 60 fps. But some people can, I can personally tell the difference between 50 fps and 60 fps, as can my brother. Around 75 fps is when I can no longer tell the difference(for my brother he can tell the difference between 75 fps and 120 fps). What you say is true though, high fps is good for everyone even if they can't tell the difference because in video games the average fps is not the true fps. True fps varies greatly(if you plot it on a graph it looks like a very jagged line).
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 1:08:46 PM

a4mula wrote: "Anything above 26fps our eyes don't render regardless and while 60 fps is the target goal, this is only to prevent low fps dips from creating stutter effects. "

@a4mula like has already been said you are wrong, makes me think that you've never actually played a game and measured its fps its blatantly obvious, you do however have a point that any gpu above the gtx 570 level will suffer very diminishing return from your dollar imo, but hey some want the best...
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 1:28:39 PM

The GTX 580 is about 15% cheaper than the HD 7970 and it performs about 15% worse as well. Both cards are fantastic and will handle anything you throw at them for years to come. If you want nVIDIA then purchase a GTX 580, if you want AMD then purchase an HD 7970.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 1:55:37 PM

id say its easy tell the difference up to 60 fps, I cannot see the difference between 60 fps and 100 fps on a 60hz monitor

also its easy to tell when you are dipping below 30 and into the 20s, believe me Ive had many crappy gaming machines in which I have ran fraps on and am also aware of the fps changes in gameplay, maybe im anal but I think its really easy to spot unless youve grown up playing consoles your whole life, then you are already very used to 30 fps, for me a constant 50-60 fps is becoming more and more of a need as a grow up to become an angry crabby adult gamer, lol.. thats my 2 cents anyways
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 2:00:58 PM

If you want a good gameplay then you want to be sure that your fps will never drop below 30, it doesnt matter what your eyes can see or not, what matters is the fluidity (is that even a word?) of the game, you want to be running it for sure above 60 so at that heavy scene with the explosions and stuff your game will still be running smooth.
And if you want to ensure that you will be playing at resolutions like that in high quality then you better get a 7970 and two years from now you get a 2nd one just to keep the edge.
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 2:09:47 PM

I am building a system right now and I was going to put in 2 GTX 580s in SLI until I read up on the 7970 and have decided to go in that direction. Lower power consumption, temperature, and Eyefinity are sellers for me.

As far as getting more inexpensive cards for games that you play now, think of games that you will be playing in one or two years. Do you really want to spend money on a video card that you will have to replace in one to two years because you cannot keep up with current software?

The 7970 is also PCIe 3.0 compatible and as the drivers mature, you will probably see better efficiency.

Don't buy the card for right now, buy the card for now and two years from now.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 2:17:41 PM

jjb8675309 said:
id say its easy tell the difference up to 60 fps, I cannot see the difference between 60 fps and 100 fps on a 60hz monitor




I Strongly agree. I aim for 60fps minimum. With games like starcraft 2 or wow, I used to aim for 35 as a min but bf3 made me change that. I have noticed that below 50fps, things start to blur a bit when you move around a lot and below 40 it starts to get annoying. Once you start dropping below that, you start to get stuttering combined with a bit of blur and it kinda sucks overall. On the other hand, I can't tell the difference between 60 or 100 fps. Also, have a look at the grahic card hierarchy and you will see that the 7970 is better than the gtx 580.

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

In regards to playing bf3 in ultra at 1920x1080, a 7970 is not overkill at all. With a 6990, I was hitting an average 55fps at 1920x1080 in ultra with AA on. I actually found myself turning off AA so I could hit an average 75FPS because I wasn't too thrilled with the performance at 55.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 2:25:34 PM

^yeah and thats exactly how I feel about competitive fps games, I play bf3 too and with one I turn off whatever settings necessary to keep the minimum no lower than 55fps which was quite hard to with my p2 955 @ 4 ghz so I am excited to see what sli gtx 560tis and a i52500k oc'ed can do! but at the end of the day, if I'm still not getting the fps I need I will scale back settings until I hit those magic numbers that you and I have now mentioned above
m
0
l
a c 124 U Graphics card
a b 4 Gaming
January 10, 2012 2:29:42 PM

6970s are great value now, you can get them fairly cheap. 580s of course are awesome, but only the 1.5gb versions are worth it now that 7970s are the same price as the 3gb models, and much faster.

That said, a 7970 is an absolute monster and will push 1080p games just fine for years to come.
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 3:36:50 PM

if you got the dough to buy a 7970, obviously this is a no brainer.

+ futureproof (yes, it will cost more now, but will cost less down the road; and you made no compromise)
+ performance
+ support from vendor for years to come vs a dying product
+ less power consumption vs SLI, and all the headaches within that acronym
+ less slots to eat up on your motherboard
+

- price

Once you balance it out, it helps make things clear.
m
0
l
January 10, 2012 4:01:24 PM

a4mula said:
Anything above 26fps our eyes don't render regardless and while 60 fps is the target goal, this is only to prevent low fps dips from creating stutter effects.


26 vs 60fps is night and day. Absolutely huge difference in games! 60fps is the "target goal" as you say. Any higher and it does become difficult to distinguish. If it drops below 60 though, you feel it, instantly. I think you are confused with films,which look smooth played back at 24fps. I don't know much technical details but I believe that 24fps film playback is more natural because this is the framerate they were shot at, and 60fps would create that stutter effect due to the added frames. 24fps looks smooth in that case because it is the rate it was shot at. My god. I hope this is not a case of the blind leading the blind, haha. But I know for sure that you are incorrect regarding 26 vs 60fps for gaming
m
0
l
a c 124 U Graphics card
a b 4 Gaming
January 10, 2012 4:12:42 PM

24 fps only looks fine on film because it blends together. Eyes see things very differently, not really in terms of any set framerate. We can see a flash of light that lasts only a fraction of a second, something that would require 200+ fps to see on a monitor for example. On the other hand if there's constant light, you aren't as likely to see a black frame because the light is kind of burned in. With 24fps movies, this is sort of what happens, the light of a frame keeps it burned into your eyes while there's a dark flash and then the next frame lights up. On top of that, it was filmed at 24 fps so movement is naturally blurred - ever see a photo where there was movement and a person or car looks like a ghost?

Monitors and games work entirely differently. Some games add blurring now which does usually help give the appearance of smooth framerates when they are a bit low, but I know for sure that I can tell a difference between 30, 40 and 50 or 60 fps. 30 seems fine until you get 60 and it's like wow, this game is smooth!

Also, framerate will change how responsive your mouse is. 60 vs 30 fps means your mouse will be twice as smooth/responsive.

EDIT: Check this out. If you don't see the difference... well... I don't know what to say.
http://www.boallen.com/fps-compare.html
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 4:35:20 PM

wolfram23 said:
6970s are great value now, you can get them fairly cheap. 580s of course are awesome, but only the 1.5gb versions are worth it now that 7970s are the same price as the 3gb models, and much faster.

That said, a 7970 is an absolute monster and will push 1080p games just fine for years to come.



I picked up a used 6970 for $250 last week and crossfire 6970's will outperform a 6990 slightly and will certainly outperform a 7970. As long as you don't mind being a generation behind, maybe this is for you. You can always add a another 6970 down the road for trifire or two more if you have enough room,slots, power. I still think if you are starting fresh, it would be easier to get a 7970 and forget about the hassle of trying to run 2,3 or even 4, 6xxx series cards. You will get more performance out of crossfire 6970 for the same or even less money but future upgrades may be a pain in the ass.
m
0
l
!