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Upgrade or CF?? HD5870

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 14, 2012 11:42:37 PM

I'm debating on selling my 5870 and upgrading to something newer such as a 670 or 7950 or getting another 5870 for like a $100 or so and CF them? It's been a great card, but only as of late am I noticing my frame rates dropping a bit and having to turn eye candy down slightly. Or I guess a 3rd option is just to stay where I'm at and wait for next release and maybe 28nm will be more mature. Need help deciding, what do you all think?

More about : upgrade hd5870

a c 143 U Graphics card
May 14, 2012 11:57:03 PM

What's your total system specs and monitor's resolution?
Running another HD 5870 in CF will increase the heat and noise of the cards plus they will consume a lot of power, and you might be bottlenecked by the 1 GB of VRAM in certain titles.

Grabbing a GTX 670 or HD 7970 will add the bonus of low power consumption, less heat & noise, better tessellation and DX11 support,.........

So what games do you intend to play? The HD 5870 is almost as powerful as my HD 6950 and can max out most of games out there.
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May 15, 2012 12:06:40 AM

ilysaml said:
What's your total system specs and monitor's resolution?
Running another HD 5870 in CF will increase the heat and noise of the cards plus they will consume a lot of power, and you might be bottlenecked by the 1 GB of VRAM in certain titles.

Grabbing a GTX 670 or HD 7970 will add the bonus of low power consumption, less heat & noise, better tessellation and DX11 support,.........

So what games do you intend to play? The HD 5870 is almost as powerful as my HD 6950 and can max out most of games out there.


Asus P6X58D-E MB, i7-930@4ghz, 6gig ram, corsair 850W, and 1920x1200 res. Honestly I don't hold much stock in power consumption, I've ran my machine on a kill a watt and it's not like its jacking up my power bill like the AC does in summer time. And well noise is seems to be irrelevant because even on 100% gpu usage it maxes out at like 55C and thats with 40% fan at the most. Biggest thing for me is performance for my dollar.

I play BF3, SC2, some crysis 2, just finished Batman AC, doubt I'll pick that up much though, prob Diablo 3 if it turns out to be worth it which I know would run fine right now, maybe Guild Wars 2. So yeah thats where I stand guess.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 15, 2012 12:17:53 AM

What brand of HD 5870 do you currently own?
Running 2 cards in CF increase the heat, fan speeds will crank up will be clearly noticeable specially if you have a reference designed cards.

Anyway, I wouldn't recommend this move, the scaling of HD 5800 series wasn't that great like the scaling of HD 6900 series, it could reach 100% on most titles.
HD 5870s in CF


I would recommend getting GTX 670, it worth the price right now performs faster than HD 7970 and overkill for your monitor resolution, will free you of CF scaling/ drivers issues & hassle.
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a c 106 U Graphics card
May 15, 2012 12:27:22 AM


That looks like an older benchmark. Crossfire performance for 5000 series cards has improved over it's life. Even the 5870 is at the end of it's product life as AMD just recently cut back support for older cards. If you have the money a GTX 670 is a good option. It only makes sense to get a 5870 if you can get it for $180 or less. Of course if you are thinking about a 670 then you got a bit more money to spend :) 
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May 15, 2012 12:31:17 AM

ilysaml said:
What brand of HD 5870 do you currently own?
Running 2 cards in CF increase the heat, fan speeds will crank up will be clearly noticeable specially if you have a reference designed cards.

Anyway, I wouldn't recommend this move, the scaling of HD 5800 series wasn't that great like the scaling of HD 6900 series, it could reach 100% on most titles.
HD 5870s in CF
http://tpucdn.com/reviews/ATI/Radeon_HD_5870_CrossFire/images/scaling.gif

I would recommend getting GTX 670, it worth the price right now performs faster than HD 7970 and overkill for your monitor resolution, will free you of CF scaling/ drivers issues & hassle.


Yeah according from that graph I would only be getting 50% more gpu at my res. Doesn't seem worth it I guess. I have a sapphire one, non reference cooling fan on it. Single fan in the middle.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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May 15, 2012 12:31:31 AM

it honestly depends on your budget. If you can do it for cheap and then save up for a newer card, then a 2nd 5870 could be the answer. it however would be more expensive as it depends on how long you want to wait. if you have some money you can try: gtx 670, 680 or 7950 and 7970. all are over 400 bucks and give a very big jump from the 5870. if ur an ati guy you can either overclock or wait for the ghz addition. the 7900 series is a great overclocker and will match the 680 in some games (some games are optimized to run much better with the 680). if ur nvidia, the 670 is very tempting as it is around 7-8% slower than the 680 but matches the 7970 at stock.
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May 15, 2012 12:32:49 AM

megamanx00 said:
That looks like an older benchmark. Crossfire performance for 5000 series cards has improved over it's life. Even the 5870 is at the end of it's product life as AMD just recently cut back support for older cards. If you have the money a GTX 670 is a good option. It only makes sense to get a 5870 if you can get it for $180 or less. Of course if you are thinking about a 670 then you got a bit more money to spend :) 


I think you're thinking of the 4000 series. They dropped those down to once a quarter update. However the 5000 and up still get monthly updates. But it doesn't take much logic to know that 5000's are next.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
May 15, 2012 12:37:58 AM

Yes the HD 4000 and lower series was moved to quarterly updates, Good to know that you don't have a reference design card because they run as hot as hell.

Like the guys recommended above, If money is a problem to you, just grab another HD 5870...at the end you'll get very playable FPS in each game you play at your resolution, but the 1 GB of VRAM could be a limiting factor and providing a random stutter in some games.

If money isn't a problem, just grab the GTX 670 or wait a little for any prices drops.
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May 15, 2012 12:43:29 AM

ilysaml said:
Yes the HD 4000 and lower series was moved to quarterly updates, Good to know that you don't have a reference design card because they run as hot as hell.

Like the guys recommended above, If money is a problem to you, just grab another HD 5870...at the end you'll get very playable FPS in each game you play at your resolution, but the 1 GB of VRAM could be a limiting factor and providing a random stutter in some games.

If money isn't a problem, just grab the GTX 670 or wait a little for any prices drops.



When isn't money a problem lol. But yeah, I think I'm leaning towards the 670. Thanks for everyone's input.
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May 15, 2012 12:43:42 AM

Best answer selected by rdzona.
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June 18, 2012 8:06:57 AM

[If money isn't a problem, just grab the GTX 670 or wait a little for any prices drops.]

Wow, all you guys on this thread must be getting nvidia kickbacks for specifically plugging the gtx 670. If money isn't an option, why would you not just go for a 680 or even a 690 if your loaded and can find one. I was where you are now about a year ago on your decision making except im using a 30 in monitor on high settings. I had one hd 5870 and play the same games you do adding swtor and wwiionline, skyrim. I decided to buy another hd 5870 off ebay (200$ at the time) and crossfired it. Don't let all these nvidia propagandist fanboys try to tell you the hd 5870 has horrible cf scaling, yada yada. When I benchmark using 3dmark (new and old) etc, I am getting almost 100% increase in framerates versus one hd 5870. I am not an amd fanboy, mind you. I own a gtx 460 and a gtx 470 and always had success with both companies cards. So if your wanting great framerates for cheap, hd5870 works great. I will tell you though, they are absolutely right on the heat. Your case better had great ventilation otherwise you might experience shutdowns like I did. My case is the original Cosmos 2. I had to actually bores two holes in the side panel to add and intake fan and a fan to expel the hot air generated by the cards. They got the hottest when I played battlefield 3 for over 2 hours=tons of frakking heat. I am building a new build and just went for a sapphire 7970 OC 3gb off newegg with a custom dual cooling fan. I wanted a gtx 680, but prices still so freaking high 500$+, and most just had reference model cooling fans. I got the hd 7970 for 469$ plus 3 new games for free as an offer from the site. I figure I can overclock the card to match the gtx680s ~10% advantage. Hope this helps. And again, both companies make great cards, you just have to justify the price/performance versus your budget.
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