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Upgrade to 6870 or...?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 5, 2012 2:58:55 PM

So, I've recently overhauled my entire system... These are the specs:
Motherboard: ASUS M5A97 AM3+
CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 960T "Zosma" (not yet overclocked; extra cores not yet unlocked)
RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws 2 x 4GB DDR3-1600
PSU: OCZ ZX Series 850W 80Plus Gold
Case: Antec 300 Illusion


I've been eyeballing a Radeon 6870 as my video card upgrade (i.e. XFX Double D HD-687A-ZDFC), with the intention of buying a second card to eventually run in Crossfire. However, upon reading earlier this morning that the Radeon 78xx-line had seen its debut and would be entering the retail market in a few more weeks, I'm faced with the ever-present and eternal tech dilemma: buy now or buy later?

Given the current price point on the 6870 card referenced above, $170 with the rebate, and an expected price point for a 7870 of $350-ish, I'm torn on how to proceed. The 7870 comes reference with more, well, everything, and it appears that a single card will run similarly enough to crossfired 6870's - which to me, would justify a higher upfront cost.

So, TH community: should I grab the 6870 and eventually get a second one (maybe sooner than expected in case AMD stops production to push its successor)? Or should I continue saving my money for the next two weeks and get a 7870? Or, since my mantra is to get the best bang for my buck, maybe someone give me good data to sway me towards an nVidia card? I'm open to suggestions and other options.

Thanks, all!

More about : upgrade 6870

March 5, 2012 3:55:30 PM

if you playing high graphic demanding game at 1920x1080 and want the setting to be ultra i would say wait for 7870(~$350), however 6870(~150AR) is one of the best bang for your buck for now but if you crossfire later you'll run into micro stuttering and driver issue and with 1gb ram would bottleneck in some game like bf3, you could get 7850(~$250) and you might get 2nd one for crossfire down the road.
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March 5, 2012 4:08:31 PM

its might be worth waiting untill the full range of the hd 7000 series is released or if you look around a bit u might be able to get a 6950 for a fraction more.
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March 5, 2012 5:30:57 PM

No doubt, mercer95... I had considered the 6950 as well, but all the vendors I prefer to buy from are currently out of stock or else the prices haven't dropped enough post-7xxx series release for my preference.

Regardless, the more I've thought about it, the more I'm liking waiting for the 7870. Especially since by the time it's hit the retail market, I'll have received my tax refund and another paycheck. :) 
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March 5, 2012 5:42:12 PM

Go with 7870 if you can eat the cost's. At the speculated $350 price tag this is a great card performing up against the 570 and 580 easily.

Additional note: Your case will be much cooler to without all the extra heat xfire will cause. Imo this is worth the cost along with the performance.
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March 5, 2012 5:51:42 PM

i've got a second 6870 that i bought a year ago thinking i'd get around to crossfiring it .. i never did , there's little need for it in any game i play ... sure i can't can't play BF3 on ULTRA , but i can play it on high , and to be honest with you , i can't say i've seen any difference with my own eyes between ultra and high ... so make sure to ask yourself what your really going to need a 300 dollar gaphics card for ? to play console ports for games made for a 7 year old system ?
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a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2012 5:58:37 PM

A pair of 6870's are faster than a gtx 580, which in turn is faster than a 7870. On the other hand, a 7870 will leave room for a future upgrade and won't trouble you with CrossfireX's issues. If you have the money, go for the 7870.

http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2011-gaming-graphics...
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March 5, 2012 6:20:23 PM

hotthree said:
Go with 7870 if you can eat the cost's. At the speculated $350 price tag this is a great card performing up against the 570 and 580 easily.
Additional note: Your case will be much cooler to without all the extra heat xfire will cause. Imo this is worth the cost along with the performance.

Case cooling is a big reason I went with the Antec 300 -- not too huge a case, and with lots of airflow capability. Still, good input.

marquis said:
i've got a second 6870 that i bought a year ago thinking i'd get around to crossfiring it ... i never did ... and to be honest with you , i can't say i've seen any difference with my own eyes between ultra and high ...

I'm the same way: I scrutinize settings to squeeze the most fps out of a card without effecting what my eyes/brain can process in quality. Do I need to crossfire? No; but the capability to do so down the line would be more advantageous than completely replacing my video card in the future...

Murissokah said:
A pair of 6870's are faster than a gtx 580, which in turn is faster than a 7870. On the other hand, a 7870 will leave room for a future upgrade and won't trouble you with CrossfireX's issues. If you have the money, go for the 7870.

That's kinda where I'm sitting. Do I need the raw horsepower to play all the games I enjoy in face-melting graphical awesomeness? No. But, I'm still kinda figuring to spend a little more up front for a single card.


Any other feedback or input from the community?
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