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1GB or 2GB VRAM Video Card?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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February 15, 2012 7:19:41 PM

Hello everyone,

This is my first thread on this site so please excuse any mistakes I may have made.

I just bought an i5-2500k set-up:
ASRock Z68 PRO3-M Mobo
650w 80 plus bronze
8g 1600MHz G.Skill RAM
128g Vertex 2 SSD

And my current video card is an HD5770 1GB.

My question is weather or not a 2GB VRAM card is worth it for me. I happen to play a lot of flight sims, i.e. DCS:A-10C, DCS: BlackShark 2, Microsoft FSX, etc. I heard that simulations like these actually use more video memory but I'm not sure if that's actually the case.

My budget is $200-260 and I was looking at the HD6950 2g or possibly an Overclocked 6870 1g if I find the extra gig of video memory wouldn't help me that much.

I'm also currently playing games with just one 1920x1080p monitor but do have another 21" hooked up if a newer video card would allow me to use that for games too.

Thanks for your time
a c 254 U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 7:37:35 PM

You would need more video ram for resolutions of 2560x1600 or if you did a lot of 3D video rendering. You would need it for three or more screens and the card that you have should have the ability to use the two monitors to play your games.
If you can get the 6950 2gb for your budget amount it would be the better card than the 6870 1gb so it would be a good thing to do anyway. Linked below is a graphics card Hierarchy Chart so you can see what level the card you have is on vs. the card you want.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...
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a c 92 U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 8:02:42 PM

1 gb is perfectly fine for 1080p. You are going to be shader limited and not vram limited with cards around $200.
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February 15, 2012 8:36:02 PM

Vram amount scales with the power of the card which dictates what resolution it will run games at fluently which goes back to how much Vram it has the power to effectively utilize.

Remember the Trifecta !
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a c 232 U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 8:49:09 PM

At your budget I'd get a 900 Mhz 560 Ti .... I don't have the 7750/7770 on table below yet but from the reviews I read today, I'm not impressed.

Guru3D uses the following games in their test suite, COD-MW, Bad Company 2, Dirt 2, Far Cry 2, Metro 2033, Dawn of Discovery, Crysis Warhead. Total fps (summing fps in each game @ 1920 x 1200) for the various options in parenthesis (single card / SL or CF) are tabulated below along with their cost in dollars per frame single card - CF or SLI:

$ 155.00 6850 (371/634) $ 0.42 - $ 0.49
$ 150.00 6870 (434/701) $ 0.35 - $ 0.43
$ 220.00 6950 (479/751) $ 0.46 - $ 0.59
$ 240.00 6950 Frozr OC (484/759) $ 0.50 - $ 0.63
$ 205.00 560 Ti (455/792) $ 0.45 - $ 0.52
$ 205.00 560 Ti - 900 Mhz (495/862) $ 0.41 - $ 0.48

The 6870 is very attractive especially now when it's available for as little as $150 after MIR.....35 cents per frame is a very good bang for the buck. As we get higher frame rates there's the inevitable "law of diminishing returns" but the next standout is the factory OC'd 560 Ti's.... with over size coolers and beefed up VRM's they see overclocks as high as 30% over reference. The Asus card below has hit 1070 Mhz but it cost more than the $205 Gigabyte model. Both have 7 phase VRM's....the Frozr has 6 and the Lightning has 9. At 41 cents per frame it's attractive but it's hi scaling makes it really attractive at 48 cents per frame in SLI

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

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...
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February 15, 2012 8:59:00 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
At your budget I'd get a 900 Mhz 560 Ti .... I don't have the 7750/7770 on table below yet but from the reviews I read today, I'm not impressed.

Guru3D uses the following games in their test suite, COD-MW, Bad Company 2, Dirt 2, Far Cry 2, Metro 2033, Dawn of Discovery, Crysis Warhead. Total fps (summing fps in each game @ 1920 x 1200) for the various options in parenthesis (single card / SL or CF) are tabulated below along with their cost in dollars per frame single card - CF or SLI:

$ 155.00 6850 (371/634) $ 0.42 - $ 0.49
$ 150.00 6870 (434/701) $ 0.35 - $ 0.43
$ 220.00 6950 (479/751) $ 0.46 - $ 0.59
$ 240.00 6950 Frozr OC (484/759) $ 0.50 - $ 0.63
$ 205.00 560 Ti (455/792) $ 0.45 - $ 0.52
$ 205.00 560 Ti - 900 Mhz (495/862) $ 0.41 - $ 0.48

The 6870 is very attractive especially now when it's available for as little as $150 after MIR.....35 cents per frame is a very good bang for the buck. As we get higher frame rates there's the inevitable "law of diminishing returns" but the next standout is the factory OC'd 560 Ti's.... with over size coolers and beefed up VRM's they see overclocks as high as 30% over reference. The Asus card below has hit 1070 Mhz but it cost more than the $205 Gigabyte model. Both have 7 phase VRM's....the Frozr has 6 and the Lightning has 9. At 41 cents per frame it's attractive but it's hi scaling makes it really attractive at 48 cents per frame in SLI

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

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

Your not impressed with the 7770 come on it has reference GTX 460 1GB performance at the same price point brand new and yet it only needs a 6 pin and 90watts max and is a low end part = 7770 is a good card.
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 9:39:30 PM

atari 2600 said:
Your not impressed with the 7770 come on it has reference GTX 460 1GB performance at the same price point brand new and yet it only needs a 6 pin and 90watts max and is a low end part = 7770 is a good card.


except for the fact that the 6850 is better.
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 9:43:11 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
At your budget I'd get a 900 Mhz 560 Ti .... I don't have the 7750/7770 on table below yet but from the reviews I read today, I'm not impressed.

Guru3D uses the following games in their test suite, COD-MW, Bad Company 2, Dirt 2, Far Cry 2, Metro 2033, Dawn of Discovery, Crysis Warhead. Total fps (summing fps in each game @ 1920 x 1200) for the various options in parenthesis (single card / SL or CF) are tabulated below along with their cost in dollars per frame single card - CF or SLI:

$ 155.00 6850 (371/634) $ 0.42 - $ 0.49
$ 150.00 6870 (434/701) $ 0.35 - $ 0.43
$ 220.00 6950 (479/751) $ 0.46 - $ 0.59
$ 240.00 6950 Frozr OC (484/759) $ 0.50 - $ 0.63
$ 205.00 560 Ti (455/792) $ 0.45 - $ 0.52
$ 205.00 560 Ti - 900 Mhz (495/862) $ 0.41 - $ 0.48

The 6870 is very attractive especially now when it's available for as little as $150 after MIR.....35 cents per frame is a very good bang for the buck. As we get higher frame rates there's the inevitable "law of diminishing returns" but the next standout is the factory OC'd 560 Ti's.... with over size coolers and beefed up VRM's they see overclocks as high as 30% over reference. The Asus card below has hit 1070 Mhz but it cost more than the $205 Gigabyte model. Both have 7 phase VRM's....the Frozr has 6 and the Lightning has 9. At 41 cents per frame it's attractive but it's hi scaling makes it really attractive at 48 cents per frame in SLI

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

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...


I got a HIQ iceQ X which runs at 820/1100 at default for $130 with MRI, your prices for the 6850 are too high.
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February 15, 2012 9:45:16 PM

Quote:
except for the fact that the 6850 is better.

Of course 6850 is better it is a pure Mid range card but the 7770 is a low end budget card that is almost as fast as the mid range and just as fast as a GTX 460 1gb so as you can see being that 7770 is a low end card that hangs with the mid range it is real good.
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February 15, 2012 9:52:46 PM

Thanks for all the replies already.

I read the review on the 7770 and THAT review made me want to get the 6870 O/Ced. If the 6850 was beating the 7770 in most games, I don't see the point in spending the same amount of money for a bit lower temps and lower power usage.

I do feel a little better about not getting a 2GB card though, as I currently only have one 1080p monitor.

Does anyone here think it's a good idea to just wait for the 7850 and continue using my 5770 until then?
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February 15, 2012 9:55:00 PM

tiger6k said:
Thanks for all the replies already.

I read the review on the 7770 and THAT review made me want to get the 6870 O/Ced. If the 6850 was beating the 7770 in most games, I don't see the point in spending the same amount of money for a bit lower temps and lower power usage.

I do feel a little better about not getting a 2GB card though, as I currently only have one 1080p monitor.

Does anyone here think it's a good idea to just wait for the 7850 and continue using my 5770 until then?

7770 is LOW END entry level 6850 is mid range.
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February 15, 2012 10:02:01 PM

atari 2600 said:
7770 is LOW END entry level 6850 is mid range.



From a consumer stand point, what does it matter that the 7770 is called LOW END and the 6850 is called mid range when I'm spending the same amount of money on both but one performs better than the other?

I'm not here to SAY I got a mid range card or a LOW END card, I just want the best performance in games that I can get for my money. The 7770 doesn't seem to be that at the moment. If it was truly LOW END, it would cost less than a 6850, in which case I might consider it, but for $200, or even $160, no. I'll spend $179 and get the 6870.

EDIT: Sorry if that came off a little hostile, I do appreciate your input though. I just happened to have read the review of the 7770 earlier today and kind of ruled that out in my head already as a viable option.
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February 15, 2012 10:07:09 PM

tiger6k said:
From a consumer stand point, what does it matter that the 7770 is called LOW END and the 6850 is called mid range when I'm spending the same amount of money on both but one performs better than the other?

I'm not here to SAY I got a mid range card or a LOW END card, I just want the best performance in games that I can get for my money. The 7770 doesn't seem to be that at the moment. If it was truly LOW END, it would cost less than a 6850, in which case I might consider it, but for $200, or even $160, no. I'll spend $179 and get the 6870.

No I completely agree with you but what I am trying to say is that Radeons new low end which is the 7770 is last years mid end and prices will come down but yes $160msrp is way to high to recommend the 7770 over a cheaper and slightly faster 6850 but lets hope pricing comes down.
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a c 88 U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 10:22:32 PM

I just think the pricing would be different if Nvidia had released the 600 series cards at the same time as ATI, is it just me or are they taking advantage of the situation and pricing will change once the 600 series cards are released?
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a c 92 U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 10:28:26 PM

monsta said:
I just think the pricing would be different if Nvidia had released the 600 series cards at the same time as ATI, is it just me or are they taking advantage of the situation and pricing will change once the 600 series cards are released?

its not just you at all, the prices are inflated.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 10:32:57 PM

The HD 78XX won't differ too much from the HD 69XX series, from an experienced point of view they will be just cards with benefits such as Eyefinity 3D, 4K support, OCing potentiality & bla bla bla ......

The HD 7950 itself just is on par with the GTX 580 this mean that HD 7870 will be similar to HD 6970 and the 7850 will be the same as 6950 maybe a little slower.
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2012 10:41:43 PM

tiger6k said:
Thanks for all the replies already.

I read the review on the 7770 and THAT review made me want to get the 6870 O/Ced. If the 6850 was beating the 7770 in most games, I don't see the point in spending the same amount of money for a bit lower temps and lower power usage.

I do feel a little better about not getting a 2GB card though, as I currently only have one 1080p monitor.

Does anyone here think it's a good idea to just wait for the 7850 and continue using my 5770 until then?


It's your call but as another poster pointed out, the prices will only fall after the new nvidia cards come out. I just hope that Nvidia will have some competitive low- mid range cards (under $200) with the 600 series.
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February 15, 2012 10:43:27 PM

Ok, well maybe I'll wait till 78xx is released and grab a 6950 at a lower price (if they drop)

- I'm just impatient when it comes to waiting for hardware, especially because I know I'll just hear about something else that's new and awesome and want that.

And one more time just to be clear, if I end up WANTING to run more than one monitor, with a resolution of 3840x1080p or more, would getting a 6950 2g be beneficial at that point? Or would I need a 6970+ to run that kind of resolution anyway?
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a c 143 U Graphics card
February 16, 2012 4:17:43 AM

You would need to Crossfire, and yea at least the HD 6970.
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February 16, 2012 11:24:48 AM

I flashed both my 6950 2GB video cards and am running 3x19", 1x32", and 1x52" all with one PC =D

6970 CF = Wow! =D

Does it utilize all 4GB of VRAM or just the 2GB?
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February 16, 2012 1:45:57 PM

it's only 2gb if you run crossfire
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February 16, 2012 5:27:35 PM

Hey all,

I just found a guy on craigs list getting rid of his 6950 2g for $220. He says it's only a month old so I'm going to go check it out today. If he has the receipt and box and it's legit I think I'm gunna grab it!
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a c 92 U Graphics card
February 16, 2012 6:16:50 PM

thats kinda overpriced for a used one. the new 6950 2gbs are like $250.
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a c 88 U Graphics card
February 16, 2012 6:18:43 PM

esrever said:
thats kinda overpriced for a used one. the new 6950 2gbs are like $250.


Agreed....knock the price down
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February 16, 2012 7:21:49 PM

Ok will do. I'll see if I can get him down. I looked on newegg and saw them going for $269 (this particular card)

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

But yeah there is a rebate for $15.

$269 + $6 shipping - $15 rebate = $260

I figured $220 wasn't terrible for it being 1 month old.
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February 16, 2012 10:08:57 PM

Best answer selected by Tiger6k.
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a c 273 U Graphics card
February 16, 2012 10:11:26 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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