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New GPU for D3? 7850, 7870, 7950?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 3, 2012 10:17:34 PM

I am building a new tower, mainly for Diablo 3, and the GPU is the last piece. I will be playing other games like NBA 2K12, an fps or two (BF3 if nothing comes out soon). The build is in my signature. I do want PCIe 3.0 because of the future-proof capabilities and crossfire/sli. I plan on using a monitor with 1920x1080 settings.

To make a long story short, I am mostly leaning towards the 7870 because I've read its 15-20% performance increase over 7850 (even though its 40% more in cost). After doing more research, I saw the 7950 was a jump from 256-bit to 384-bit and it really interested me (honestly, I don't know what this means but bigger is usually better), but I've also read that the 7950 is not even a 5% increase in performance over the 7870.

I don't feel like waiting to see the GTX 660/670 because D3 launch is almost here, and I don't want to be using integrated graphics for that long. I also, don't really want to spend the money on 7970 or 680... But it's not OUT of question.

What should I get?

More about : gpu 7850 7870 7950

a c 143 U Graphics card
May 3, 2012 10:39:56 PM

Any of the cards that you mentioned will max out D3, HD 7870 sounds to be the great value and all the HD 7000 series give a good OCing potentiality, so i would pick up HD 7870.
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a b U Graphics card
May 3, 2012 11:04:31 PM

I've got a 7870 and playing the D3 beta maxed with v-sync on, my GPU usage stuck around 50%. Way more power than you need, but if you'll be playing FPS games, you'll want that extra performance.
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May 3, 2012 11:36:43 PM

Yea, plus I don't want to buy another one until at least 2 years from now. Funny that you have Sapphire, I've been looking at http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I hear good things about Sapphire. I've been googling trying to find where I can compare each 7870, but I keep finding 7870 vs 6970, vs 7850, etc.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 3, 2012 11:43:50 PM

I've been using Sapphire products since Radeon X1900, never had an issue with them. besides, they are the best partner for AMD.

EDIT: It will not differ from brand to other, it will differ only in cooling and temps. Performance is the same.
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a b U Graphics card
May 3, 2012 11:45:13 PM

7950 is at a better value than the 7870 at this point in time.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 3, 2012 11:45:48 PM

gary1 said:
7950 is at a better value than the 7870 at this point in time.

How?
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a c 216 U Graphics card
May 3, 2012 11:48:16 PM



The reasoning is this. The 7870 comes stock pushed much closer to their limits on clocks, while the 7950 is hugely under clocked at stock and can easily add 20-30% performance with OCing.

This is based on some benchmarks posted by a few members here. The had their 7950's within 5% of their maxed clocked 7970's.
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a b U Graphics card
May 3, 2012 11:49:20 PM

Ah, the Sapphire is no longer 400$. Nevermind. True that chart shows the 7870 is almost on par with the 7950, but when there was 40$ difference, the 7950 won.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 12:01:46 AM

bystander said:
The reasoning is this. The 7870 comes stock pushed much closer to their limits on clocks, while the 7950 is hugely under clocked at stock and can easily add 20-30% performance with OCing.

What I heard is that all the 7xx OC very well, and i do think that they can go beyond stock clocks by a good margin, from techpowerup;
Quote:
Maximum stable clocks of the card are 1205 MHz core (21% overclock) and 1520 MHz Memory (27% overclock).

Outstanding results! 1205 MHz GPU clock is actually the highest clock we have seen on any graphics card tested so far. Memory overclock well, too, to the typical levels for these chips.


From techspot;
Quote:
Using the Catalyst Control Panel we were able to overclock the Radeon HD 7870 from a 1000MHz core and 1200MHz memory frequency to 1220MHz and 1275MHz, respectively.

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a c 216 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 12:05:12 AM

The thing is, they all seem to be able to get to about the same max OC of 1200 + or -, but the 7950 starts at the lowest clocks out of them all, giving them more OC room.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 12:13:10 AM

It's not overclocked!!! The red line just distinguishes between HD 7850/70 and other cards.

The bottom line, @ stock speeds the HD 7870 is a good value. If you're OCing the HD 7950 will get you to the levels of HD 7970 if you do things right.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 12:16:24 AM

bystander said:
The thing is, they all seem to be able to get to about the same max OC of 1200 + or -, but the 7950 starts at the lowest clocks out of them all, giving them more OC room.

Never seen that 1200 for the HD 7950, even guru3d overclocking guide hit 1150 with voltage tweaking. And be noted that not everyone seeking an overclock, it's not even easy for some people.

But you're right, when OCed it gives a pretty good result. But @ stock speeds, the HD 7870 seems to be the best value.
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a c 216 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 12:20:42 AM

ilysaml said:
Never seen that 1200 for the HD 7950, even guru3d overclocking guide hit 1150 with voltage tweaking. And be noted that not everyone seeking an overclock, it's not even easy for some people.

But you're right, when OCed it gives a pretty good result. But @ stock speeds, the HD 7870 seems to be the best value.


I was just pointing out that the 7950 comes stock with the lowest clocks, probably just so it didn't come too close to the 7970. Unfortunately, that also caused it to be too close to the 7870.

On average, you should see much larger OCing from the 7950, which is why some do find it a pretty good value.

I personally haven't use it. I'm just relaying information from those with them.
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May 4, 2012 12:41:41 AM

Obviously for D3 there wouldn't be any difference, but I'm sure I'll have more graphically intensive game(s) soon.

I have never done overclocking, but I know I will be OC'ing my CPU. Wouldn't it be easy to OC the GPU through UEFI Bios?

When the 7870 is @1050MHz (stock), it is very close to the 7950 @810MHz (stock). But if I put the 7950 to 1050MHz or more... it would noticeably perform better (for only $40 more). Is this where we are at?

Seems like 7950 is the way to go now, considering its 384-bit (instead of 256) and has 1792 stream processors (instead of 1280).
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 12:44:31 AM

Well, you got it. But OCing the GPU is being done through a simple software with simple clicks.
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May 4, 2012 1:11:01 AM

imo 7850/7950 is just an under clocked 7870/7970 only real difference is 7850/7950 is 1024/1792 stream processors and 7870/7970 is 1280/2048 stream processors. i will always grab a 7850 or 7950 card and clock it up. those are you 2 price points.
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May 4, 2012 1:13:35 AM

For Sapphire (brand I'm leaning): the single fan card is $400, and the dual one is $430... is having dual fans worth the $30 more?
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May 4, 2012 1:15:04 AM

my friends 2GB Ram dualcore can apparently run diablo 3 at high settings (beta) without any lag. Diablo isnt a very intense using application. Unless you were to play battlefield on Ultra, then that would cost a lot more
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 1:17:52 AM

Azok said:
For Sapphire (brand I'm leaning): the single fan card is $400, and the dual one is $430... is having dual fans worth the $30 more?

Yea will run much cooler, specially when OCed.
haven't you considered this?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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May 4, 2012 1:19:56 AM

Azok said:
For Sapphire (brand I'm leaning): the single fan card is $400, and the dual one is $430... is having dual fans worth the $30 more?

generally 2 fans can move more air resulting in the same cooling at lower rpm's resulting in less sound. also if overclocking you can usually get a better overall cooling performance tweaking the fans speed with 2 fans vs 1

edit: the dual fan is prob also factory oc'd which some prefer for warranty reasons
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May 4, 2012 1:31:45 AM

ilysaml said:
Yea will run much cooler, specially when OCed.
haven't you considered this?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


This is my first computer build, and I am just learning what brands are more "reliable" through posts. The MOST I've seen is Sapphire and MSI. Is Gigabyte dependable? I'm loving the 3 fans.

Now that I know 7850 OC is near 7870 and 7950 OC is near 7970... Before I was comparing the $350 7870 to the $400 7950. Now it's really a $250 7850 vs a $400 7950. Is that worth the extra $150 and will it be viable THAT much longer?

Sorry that I keep asking so many questions, I just don't want to make the wrong decision, especially when it's this expensive! Lol.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 4, 2012 2:31:19 AM

The HD 7850 will never match the performance of HD 7950 but it will play your mentioned game @ ultra settings maxed out. The HD 7950 can match the level of HD 7970 when OCed to a certain level. Same story for the HD 7870.

From those i would go with the HD 7950. If the budget is constrained go with HD 7870.
Now don't ask too many questions :p 
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