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NVidia graphics card for X79 build (gaming, GPGPU)

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 13, 2012 1:44:14 PM

First, the main parts of the build.
CPU : Intel i7-3930k
Motherboard: ASUS Rampage IV Extreme
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Z 16G 2133
SSD: Intel 520 180GB
Cooling: Corsair H100
PSU: Cooler Master Silent 1200W
Case: Custom open air

The intended use of the system is gaming and CUDA programming. So, an NVidia card is a must.

I have been eyeballing the 680 but obviously there is a shortage. And there are the rumors of other cards coming from the same family. So the question is, is it worth waiting for the 680 to come out?

As a stop gap, I can pull the old 8800GTS out of my current system.

I have also given some thoughts to a pair of 2GB GTX560 ti's. Even a pair puts me right at $500... but I've heard issues with "microstuttering".

A partial concern I have is noise level. I'd rather not have a card that sounds like a jet taking off :heink: 
April 13, 2012 1:51:35 PM

if you want silence then go with a single powerful card,680 for sure.i hope they get in stock soon.it's worth waiting.
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a b Î Nvidia
April 13, 2012 5:58:46 PM

680 is totally worth waiting, maybe it took maybe a month. But totally worth waiting in my opinion especially for gaming.

But note that compute performance is bad in 680... much worse than 7970. But gaming performance is just spot on.
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a c 91 Î Nvidia
April 13, 2012 6:04:59 PM

Have you considered an Evga GTX 580 3gb? You can get some really good prices right now on those and they are powerful enough that you can use just one and if you have the budget for it you can get two and be in a good position for quite some time. You can also go with a Nvidia Quaddro which is a professional graphics card and should give you enough performance for Cuda.
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April 13, 2012 6:05:22 PM

I would wait a bit on that 680, especially if you are doing CUDA work.
While the 680 has a ton of CUDA cores, it is not translating to performance for CUDA workloads. Wait until you know if this is a driver issue, or if they are simply not going to support major CUDA workloads on the card.

The 680 is perfect for gaming, but the 570 beats it on productivity work, so just go in with your eyes open.
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April 13, 2012 6:50:38 PM

inzone said:
Have you considered an Evga GTX 580 3gb? You can get some really good prices right now on those and they are powerful enough that you can use just one and if you have the budget for it you can get two and be in a good position for quite some time. You can also go with a Nvidia Quaddro which is a professional graphics card and should give you enough performance for Cuda.


CaedenV said:
I would wait a bit on that 680, especially if you are doing CUDA work.
While the 680 has a ton of CUDA cores, it is not translating to performance for CUDA workloads. Wait until you know if this is a driver issue, or if they are simply not going to support major CUDA workloads on the card.

The 680 is perfect for gaming, but the 570 beats it on productivity work, so just go in with your eyes open.


Thanks for the input so far.

Is the issue strictly with CUDA? Or does it translate into OpenCL?

The GPGPU work I will be doing is mostly academic work... but could translate into actual work-work ;) 

I did consider the GTX 580... and now I can't recall why I shot it down :pt1cable:  Maybe it was I wanted a PCI 3.0 card. Or maybe it was the CUDA 3.0.

Right now, the two main game titles I'm looking at are Star Craft 2 and Diablo 3 but I'm also looking for a "good" FPS. From what I've seen, my poor 8800 GTS might squeak those.
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April 13, 2012 7:01:28 PM

CUDA and OpenCL suffer. Personally (and this is only opinion) I think they are trying to make a clearer definition between their GTX, Quadro, and Tesla lines.

If the gpgpu work is just for fun, and the rig is mostly for gaming then go with the 680 :)  Cause it is one sweet game card!
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a c 77 Î Nvidia
April 13, 2012 8:09:34 PM

The 5xx series was designed for GPGPU comouting but the 680 was not ..... you'll wanna wait for "big kepler" which will arrive around August. If ya don't wanna wait, then 5xx is your only option.
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April 14, 2012 12:16:42 AM

maybe wait for a gtx 685?
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April 14, 2012 12:17:57 AM

or get a sli gtx 680 if you cant wait. If you dont mind used cards, look around on craigslist for some used EVGA 580s for sli. they should a lot cheaper considering most people are jumping for 680s.
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April 15, 2012 6:39:47 PM

You're better off waiting a bit to see if the CUDA use on the 680s improves. If not go fo ra 3gb gtx 580 like mentioned earlier, can be had for a lot cheaper too. Since the games you've mentioned aren't paritcularly graphic intensive you don't need bleeding edge IMHO.
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a c 91 Î Nvidia
April 15, 2012 8:33:16 PM

If the Pci-e 3.0 is a consideration for you then you should know that currently there are no cpu's that support it , not even the Sandy Bridge-E. You will have to wait for Ivy Bridge to come out for that and maybe by that time Intel will release an upgrade so that the Sandy Bridge-E will support the Pci-e 3.0. You need three components to support the Pci-e 3.0 , a motherboard, a video card and the cpu all have to be enabled so you can take advantage of Pci-e 3.0.
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April 15, 2012 8:52:21 PM

The fact of the matter is, however, that PCI-E 3 is borderline useless for this new generation and possibly the next generation of graphics cards. Even the 680 does not use the full bandwidth of PCI-E 2 if i'm not mistaken. It should not be something you consider in your decision making process
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a c 91 Î Nvidia
April 15, 2012 8:54:32 PM

Kind of makes you wonder why they came out with Pci-e 3.0.
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April 15, 2012 9:29:24 PM

I'm glad they did, but I wouldn't bother getting it until I build my next rig in a year or two maybe. And i'd say the same to anyone else who was considering it.
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April 15, 2012 9:47:49 PM

Thanks for all the replies.

I have ultimately "settled" on a pair of GTX 560 TIs.

From the reading I've done, noise was a little bit of an issue with the GTX 580s.

From other reading I've done, I'm better off waiting for the customized 680s rather than the currently available reference 680 cards.

Ultimately, I'll end up with a 680 and the pair of 560TIs will end up with the fiance's Ivy Bridge upgrade sometime around xmas.
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April 16, 2012 2:38:20 AM

better go with a single gtx 680.
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