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Upgrading from a 6950

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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June 9, 2012 4:34:04 PM

Hi there.
So having recently bought a 27" 2560x1440 monitor, I started looking for a new graphics card as well. I've been looking at the GTX 670 and 7970.

My system specs:
Asus P8P67 - "REGULAR edition"
i7-2600k
AMD Radeon HD 6950
8 GB RAM
Corsair Professional HX650W

Perhaps it should be noted that I have a second monitor being used as extended desktop running 1920x1080.

Any suggestions? :) 

More about : upgrading 6950

a c 126 U Graphics card
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June 9, 2012 4:41:24 PM

Hi

Here's a comparison: http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/508?vs=598

They both seem to trade blows, the GTX670 looks to be slightly quieter and use alittle less power.

Your motherboard supports crossfire, though the black PCI-E lane only runs at 4x, which would limit the performance of a second card slightly (not sure if you were considering CF or not)

I would personally go for the cheapest.
June 9, 2012 4:46:59 PM

Hey, thanks for the quick response.

Yeah, I did consider crossfire, but knew that my motherboard isn't exactly "ideal" for it.

Though generally, I do prefer just having a single card. I'll check out your link, thanks!
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June 9, 2012 5:52:48 PM

That's true, the second PCIE 2.0 slot is rated at X4 you'll get performance hit.
GTX 670 performs the same as HD 7970, but all AMD cards are preferred in the higher resolutions 2560x.

So I'd recommend HD 7970, and I'd recommend a one with custom PCB such as this one for higher overclocking and better performance.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also be noted that such a resolution requires more graphics power to maintain playable FPS in demanding games.
June 9, 2012 6:22:11 PM

Hi, thanks for your replies.

Unfortunately, I can't order from newegg as I live in Denmark (and as far as I can see, they don't offer international shipping).

The MSI Lightning is also rather pricy (I will have to put out about $700 for it). I was looking at the Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 and Gigabyte's GV N670OC-2GD. Why should I go for AMD when running in a resolution of 2560x1440?

Thanks.
June 9, 2012 6:53:46 PM

I see. Looks like it performs slightly better in some games. I am now looking at the Sapphire RADEON HD 7970 OC Edition. Would this be a good decision?
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June 9, 2012 7:29:40 PM

Yes it would be a good pick. Benches show that AMD cards are slightly better in higher resolution beginning with the 2560x up to the Eyefinity setups. Sapphire is a very good brand and reliable.
June 9, 2012 7:34:17 PM

And there is absolutely no reason for me to pick the Gigabyte GTX 670 Windforce over the Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 OC? (Well, apart from the GTX 670 being very slightly cheaper).
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June 9, 2012 7:37:27 PM

Since the difference is slightly noticeable, go with the cheaper.
The GTX 670 Windforce 3X has the best cooler out there, and some members reported overclocking up to 1225 MHz. There's nothing wrong about it.

June 9, 2012 7:50:31 PM

The 7970 has an extra gigabyte of VRAM compared to the 670, though. Should this be a deal-breaker?
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June 9, 2012 7:58:38 PM

Some games won't benefit from those extra gigs even at that resolution, but I believe that there will be some games require such a amount of VRAM.

but currently you can go with the GTX 670 no worries.
June 9, 2012 8:09:23 PM

So with the 7970 being close to $50 more expensive, the GTX 670 should the my choice? I'm given to understand that it uses less power as well, which is always a plus. If we were to guess how long it would last, what would you say (talking about playing games at close to max. settings at 1440p with a relatively playable framerate)? With the next console generation (hopefully) coming out soon, we should be seeing more demanding games within the next few years.
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June 9, 2012 8:17:09 PM

Next few? No you can't predict that at high settings,that's why i told you you'd need a lot of graphics horse at this resolution. One game may turn over the whole matter. The new Max Payne 3 Requires 2038 MB of VRAM if you'll enable 8x MSAA @ 1080P, so it will require more if you play it at 1440P, that's where the HD 7970 shines with the extra VRAM.

So to sum up, I'd recommend HD 7970, cause it may be useful later. And regarding the power consumption, the difference is not huge between GTX 670 and HD 7970 so I guess it wouldn't make a difference too u.
!