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Nvidia SLI: Choosing a card

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 11, 2012 11:33:34 PM

Basically im sick of having only one card in my case and i appreciate the mean look that having 2 graphics cards give. Basically I can do 2 GTX 480s in sli or 2 560s. So good cards for SLI around $400 total?
a c 87 U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 12:11:49 AM

The GTX 670 is not overpriced, it is priced exceptionally well for its performance and for being one of the most high end cards available. It performs about on-par with GTX 560 TI SLI and has a price to fit that and its feature list. Also, if SLI/CFX is what you want, then I'd sugesst getting two Radeon 7850s, not two Nvidia cards right now. Once a card comes out that competes with the Radeon 7850, then I might recommend it (assuming that it competes well and is priced to fit), but the 7850 is a much better card than the 560 TI and in many cases isn't priced too differently.
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a c 87 U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 12:15:50 AM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Including the MIR and free shipping, this card costs only $200, yet it is faster than the GTX 560 TI, uses much less power, and has 2GB of VRAM capacity, something that is really what I'd consider a minimum for such a setup.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that the 7850 also scales much better than the GTX 560 TI, meaning that it is much closer to being twice as fast in a CF configuration than the GTX 560 TI is in an SLI configuration, yet another advantage of the 7850. A Kepler card would share this advantage and so does the VLIW4 cards, the Radeon 6930, 6950, and Radeon 6970.
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 12:18:45 AM

blazorthon said:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Including the MIR and free shipping, this card costs only $200, yet it is faster than the GTX 560 TI, uses much less power, and has 2GB of VRAM capacity, something that is really what I'd consider a minimum for such a setup.

that card has 1GB big boy...
look again and not so hastily.. :/ 
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 12:19:40 AM

if you want SLi and not CF-X then for your price range the GTX 560 Ti I linked is your best bet.
you stated SLi and it's your call but if considering HD Radeon and CF-X then maybe re-think your entire strategy about having dual GPU's..
more driver issues with Radeon and the HD 7850 then there is nVidia and the GTX 560 Ti...
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a c 87 U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 12:24:07 AM

verbalizer said:
if you want SLi and not CF-X then for your price range the GTX 560 Ti I linked is your best bet.
you stated SLi and it's your call but if considering HD Radeon and CF-X then maybe re-think your entire strategy about having dual GPU's..
more driver issues with Radeon and the HD 7850 then there is nVidia and the GTX 560 Ti...


The driver issues are a myth at this point. With the Catalyst 12.6 and 12.7 drivers, the Radeon 7000 cards don't have any CFX issues anymore. In fact, these drivers are so good that there was a short time where they were better than Nvidia's latest drivers because Nvidia had the problems for a while, not AMD, but Nvidia has since fixed them.

Also, I think that I'd say that the best deal performance-wise at this price range for SLI would be the GTX 480 right now, not the GTX 560 TI, although it uses a lot of power and generates a lot of heat (though it does undervolt quite well). I'd put the 560 TI as a close second.
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 12:24:30 AM

HD 7850 is a better card than the GTX 560 Ti.
I will admit that (performance wise by a little).
still not a HD Radeon driver fan.
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 12:27:04 AM

what games and resolution.?
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August 12, 2012 10:02:14 PM

Battlefield 3 and Skyrim are two main ones at 1080p
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 10:12:35 PM

The GTX 670 is overpriced?? Do you realize what you just said? The GTX 670 is probably the best deal in enthusiast level parts right now. It can handle both the games you want at 1080P without any of the issues that can be part of an SLI setup (increased heat and power, microstuttering, poor performance scaling).
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August 12, 2012 10:19:14 PM

I just don't see how a Gtx 670 could be better then decent SLI cards. Like I said I want to try out dual graphics configurations, rather then 1 single card. Should i wait for Gtx 650s and 660s?
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 10:31:31 PM

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/547?vs=598

The GTX 670 has almost double the performance of a GTX 560 Ti and since SLI'd 500 series cards never scale 100% or even 80% a lot of the time, a single GTX 670 is the same or even better performance level as 2 GTX 560 Ti's. It also uses less power and heat. If you're hellbent on SLI buy one GTX 670 now, and another in a few months.
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August 12, 2012 10:35:41 PM

What about the Gtx 480? I remeber the day they were the best and now they are very cheap? Would it be a good choice if I had the equipment for cooling it? Or is it just too outdated?
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 10:41:05 PM

A GTX 480 isn't a bad choice, but, honestly, a GTX 670 or GTX 660 Ti when it comes out is the only smart choice in my opinion.

Here's a GTX 480 SLI pair vs a GTX 560 Ti SLI Pair, as you can see it is more powerful, but it's still not close to the level that the 2 GTX 670's would be on, or even GTX 660 Ti's.

Forgot the link. Here it is. http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/310?vs=441&i=187...
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August 12, 2012 10:44:43 PM

Well right now i have a 500W Corsair Power supply. I can wait for a new video card and get a new power supply as a upgrade or video card. I think i have it down to the 480 or the 670. But card first or wait a little for a new card but get the new psu to have the ability to sli.
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 10:48:00 PM

The advantage of the GTX 670 is you can run it off your current PSU as a single card. The GTX 670 will out gun the GTX 480 by a pretty massive margin.
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August 12, 2012 10:54:17 PM

I know that gtx 670 is better but can both run off the 500W and what would it take to power the 670 in sli and the 480 in sli?
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 11:05:06 PM

The GTX 480 would probably be pushing it on a 500W PSU, whereas the GTX 670 would have not problem. To run 2 GTX 480s, an 750W PSU is the minimum, where you can run 2 GTX 670's comfortably off a 600W. You could actually probably run 2 GTX 670's with your 500W, but it'd cutting it close.
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 11:18:18 PM

It's excellent. SLI'd GTX 670's are monsters. You'd be able to run just about anything around.
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August 12, 2012 11:20:07 PM

But is the VRAM on the 4gb version slower then the FTW 2 GB edition?
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Best solution

a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 11:30:26 PM

Yes, 200MHz slower. But you do have double the amount. The core clocks are the same however, and that's more important. I don't think you'd notice a difference either way. 4GB is mild overkill, but then again 2 GTX 670's is also overkill.

If you're getting two such monsters in SLI then 4GB makes sense because it extends the useful lifespan of the cards. The 4GB of VRAM also helps if you want to run crazy amounts of AA or do a multiple monitor setup.
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August 12, 2012 11:33:06 PM

All right thanks!
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August 12, 2012 11:33:12 PM

Best answer selected by seanhallam.
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 11:34:24 PM

good choice..
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a b U Graphics card
August 12, 2012 11:34:26 PM

No problem! Enjoy!
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a c 87 U Graphics card
August 13, 2012 4:20:47 AM

The core clocks are not more important than the memory bandwidth on the Kepler cards because they have huge memory bandwidth bottle-necks. The 4GB models would be memory bandwidth bottle-necked to an extreme long before you could make use of 4GB of memory versus 2GB. If you do something that needs more memory, then you are better off getting one or more Radeon 7950s or 7970s instead because those 4GB GTX 670s and 680s are no better than the 2GB versions.

Have any of you wondered why the 670, despite having a significantly crippled GPU compared to the 680, still has about the same performance (an average of an approximately 3% performance drop is not worth the extra $100 for a 680 IMO)? This is because they are so memory bandwidth bottlenecked and have the same memory bandwidth that the 680's faster GPU doesn't matter much at all in gaming. In fact, the GK104 GPU in the GTX 670 is still a faster GPU than the Tahiti GPU in the Radeon 7970 for gaming purposes, yet it's huge memory bandwidth bottle-neck holds it back. That is why the 7950 and 7970 pull ahead as the resolution and AA are increased.
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