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Regretting 570 SLI, Need more VRAM!

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August 20, 2012 6:23:58 PM

Hey guys,

Last week I decided to finally take the plunge into high-resolution 2560x1600 gaming. I had a single 570 GTX 1.25gb and figured the easiest upgrade would be to grab another 570 for SLI. Unfortunately, I installed the 2nd card yesterday and have already been experiencing VRAM bottlenecks with Skyrim (heavy texture mods and ENB) at 1920x1200. I now realize you need an ungodly amount of VRAM to play Skyrim at this level, and even more to play at 2560x1600! My Dell 3008 monitor is in the mail right now, and I'm seriously having second thoughts about the x2 570 setup.

My question is, do you think VRAM is my only issue? Should I get a 590 for similar performance, but with higher VRAM? Should I get a single 670 4GB?
What would my best GPU solution be for Skyrim and other RPGs/MMOs at 2560x1600?

I think I can get roughly $400 from both my 570s, and I can't justify spending more than ~$500 total.

**EDIT**
System Specs:

i5 2500k @ 4.2 ghz
8GB HyperX RAM
80GB SSD, 300 GB Raptor 10k (gaming drive)
1k PSU
a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 6:28:42 PM

You dont give details on the rest of your system, so its hard to say.
Textures should be swapped in and out of VRAM from System memory, so thats a factor too.
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August 20, 2012 6:33:46 PM

Sorry about that, I always forget to put in my system information ><
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a c 217 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 6:39:29 PM

The question is, "is Skyrim" worth an upgrade. In most cases you likely would not run into any issues, but a heavily modded Skyrim does use a ton of vram.
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 6:40:51 PM

You do not need 4 GB of memory for 2560x1600 on most occassions...

http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/graphics/display/evga-...

(yes i realize they're using a 2560x1440 monitor...)

Even with a ton of mods on skyrim, I still haven't ran into any reduction in performance on my EVGA GTX 670 FTW 2GB...

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August 20, 2012 6:41:29 PM

Good point bystander. I'm more concerned with 1600p killing my performance in many other games, not just Skyrim (even though Skyrim is my love-child :)  ). You think 1.25GB of VRAM is enough for my purposes outside of Skyrim?

@Killer
Very interesting article, thank you.

So is 1.25 still just a bit too small for my purposes?
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a c 185 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 6:47:28 PM

bystander said:
The question is, "is Skyrim" worth an upgrade. In most cases you likely would not run into any issues, but a heavily modded Skyrim does use a ton of vram.
+1 if your answer is yes this is the card for you http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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August 20, 2012 6:47:38 PM

Just remember a 590 with 4 GB of ram, would only have 2 GB per gpu.
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 6:47:54 PM

coprhead6 said:
Good point bystander. I'm more concerned with 1600p killing my performance in many other games, not just Skyrim (even though Skyrim is my love-child :)  ). You think 1.25GB of VRAM is enough for my purposes outside of Skyrim?


Looking through the review a lot of the newer games needs more than 1.25 Gigs vram when running at close to your resolution. So ya. It will kill your performance by a bit in other games outside of skyrim.
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August 20, 2012 6:49:52 PM

1.25 isn't enough for some games at 1600p, it'll be a major bottleneck in the future. Just like 512mb was more than enough about 3-4 years ago and it's not enough today.
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a c 185 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 6:55:01 PM

killerhurtalot said:
not needed even on 2560x1600... only thing that pushes over 2 GB right now is triple monitor set-ups...
Doesn't matter if hes going to spend that kind of money he be better off in the long run getting the 4gb model imo hell if hes not happy with x2 570 in sli a 670 or 680 4gb models is a must.
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 7:00:15 PM

bigcyco1 said:
Doesn't matter if hes going to spend that kind of money he be better off in the long run getting the 4gb model imo


you're talking about a extra $50 on top of $400... he might as well as get a better GPU rather than the 4GB version...

And also memory usage in games has been increasing at a slower rate than an increase in memory availability... Memory usage has barely doubled for the same resolutions since 5 years ago (and that's mainly due to more people getting triple monitor set-ups than games themselves...) and the vram availability has quadrupled....

Also having 4 GB of vram won't matter in the future since the gpu will become outdated way before the games needing more than 2 gb of vram. It's just a waste of money to go over 2GB... if you don't have a triple monitor set-up.
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August 20, 2012 7:04:29 PM

Thanks for the advice guys.
What about a 3GB 580? vs the 670?

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a c 185 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 7:04:46 PM

Well i am not going to argue i would get the 670 4gb model OP it's your choice what you want to do anyway best of luck
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 7:08:18 PM

coprhead6 said:
Thanks for the advice guys.
What about a 3GB 580? vs the 670?


GTX 670 2GB performs better than the GTX 580 3GB and is cheaper (usually)

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August 20, 2012 7:08:41 PM

I assume you are just going from a single 1920x1200 to a single 2560x1600? It almost sounded like you were grabbing a second monitor for a minute.

If you're running 16xAA and max everything with SLI, I would think you should still be getting at least a good frame rate. I can run 3840x1200 (not that I do normally) on games without AA and my single 7950 doesn't even break a sweat. Max everything and I go down to ~30 fps on average.
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 7:15:17 PM

booyaah said:
I assume you are just going from a single 1920x1200 to a single 2560x1600? It almost sounded like you were grabbing a second monitor for a minute.

If you're running 16xAA and max everything with SLI, I would think you should still be getting at least a good frame rate. I can run 3840x1200 (not that I do normally) on games without AA and my single 7950 doesn't even break a sweat. Max everything and I go down to ~35 fps on average.


I think the problem is that in the future, his GTX 570 SLI set-up will get bottlenecked even more (as more and more games demand more than 1.25 gigs of vram) as opposed to having a newer card with 2+GB of vram that has extra vram for games to grow into later on...

Your card has 3 GB of vram and is pretty much set for triple display set-up for at least the next 2-3 years in terms of vram limitations... (since current games rarely use over 2GB even at 3840x1200 resolution...) Whether it has enough power to do is is another story.
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August 20, 2012 7:20:06 PM

@Booyaah, yeah I'm doing a single 2560x1600.

Thanks everyone. I'm still a bit unsure of what to do. I really don't care about getting 60+ FPS in every game. I only upgraded my 570 to SLI in order to handle 2560x1600 and to get better FPS in my modded Skyrim. I'm now pretty certain that VRAM was my issue, and I'm trying to figure out what my best GPU solution would be to this. It sounds like I'm going back to single card with higher VRAM, and that 2GB would be just fine for me if I wasn't concerned about playing Skyrim and other games with high-resolution texture packs. However, 4GB might be overkill for the price now. Perhaps 3gb?

**EDIT**
Also, I've heard that it's recommended to have at least 2GB of VRAM just to play comfortably with high settings at 2560x1600, so games with high-resolution texture packs like Skyrim would need even more. This is mainly why I'm looking above 2GB of VRAM.
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 7:24:50 PM

coprhead6 said:
@Booyaah, yeah I'm doing a single 2560x1600.

Thanks everyone. I'm still a bit unsure of what to do. I really don't care about getting 60+ FPS in every game. I only upgraded my 570 to SLI in order to handle 2560x1600 and to get better FPS in my modded Skyrim. I'm now pretty certain that VRAM was my issue, and I'm trying to figure out what my best GPU solution would be to this.

So I'm thinking 2GB might be too small. Perhaps 3GB?


Ya. I would personally recommend the 7970 3GB ghz edition if you're that worried about vram limitations (probably the closest to performance wise to your GTX 570 in SLI without vram limitations)

Ironically, the 7970 3GB ghz edition is similarly priced to the EVGA GTX 670 SC+ 4GB at around $450-470 (but performs better by a noticable margin)
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August 20, 2012 7:27:00 PM

Never gone with ATI... *dubious face*
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 7:31:23 PM

coprhead6 said:
Never gone with ATI... *dubious face*


AMD is actually competitive with Nvidia now on their high end cards lol (7970 ghz edition performs really similar to the gtx 680 on most games and costs less... and it can be overclocked more than the GTX 680 can.)

http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/graphics/display/radeo...

AMD's drivers also got a whole lot better since the last release (and that's why you see people yelling at people recommending Nvidia cards because the older reviews uses older drivers)
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 7:38:36 PM

bigcyco1 said:
No...no...no... get this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... and don't look back their trying to convert you now :lol:  :na:  kidding but i would get that card ;) 


Why would he get that... He should get the EVGA GTX 670 FTW 2GB for $400... $60 cheaper and factory overclocked higher (1006mhz core vs 967mhz core)... (and based on the GTX680 board so it's got better power regulation and cooling too

only reason i'm recommending the 7970 is because he said he wanted more than 2GB of vram...


Don't see why people recommend things that people don't ever need...i got a friend who got a i5 k series processor with a z77 motherboard that will never overclock his processor... basically just throwing money away...
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August 20, 2012 7:51:02 PM

Wow, ok. I think I've been convinced by the BigMack / Killerhurtalot duo.

Sorry bigcyco, I might just have to go ATI this time :\


And BigMack, any particular recommendations for big-name brands without "reference coolers"?
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a c 271 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 8:16:55 PM

killerhurtalot said:
AMD is actually competitive with Nvidia now on their high end cards lol (7970 ghz edition performs really similar to the gtx 680 on most games and costs less... and it can be overclocked more than the GTX 680 can.)

http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/graphics/display/radeo...

AMD's drivers also got a whole lot better since the last release (and that's why you see people yelling at people recommending Nvidia cards because the older reviews uses older drivers)

I think it's going to take a more than one driver release to exonerate ATi/AMD of their past shoddiness.
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a c 185 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 8:20:41 PM

coprhead6 said:
Wow, ok. I think I've been convinced by the BigMack / Killerhurtalot duo.

Sorry bigcyco, I might just have to go ATI this time :\


And BigMack, any particular recommendations for big-name brands without "reference coolers"?
Hahaha that's o.k. have fun i think you'll regret it but i hope not bro and honestly hope you enjoy the card take care. :hello: 
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 9:17:34 PM

Mousemonkey said:
I think it's going to take a more than one driver release to exonerate ATi/AMD of their past shoddiness.


I don't really keep grudges... As long as it works now, don't really care about the past :/ 
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a c 271 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 9:21:22 PM

killerhurtalot said:
I don't really keep grudges... As long as it works now, don't really care about the past :/ 

Yeah, history is such a pain and its not like it teaches anything. :whistle: 
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August 20, 2012 9:49:44 PM

Any suggestions Mousemonkey?
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a c 217 U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 9:54:51 PM

You are in a tough spot. For Skyrim, you may be best off selling your 570's and getting a 670/7950/7970. With all your mods, the 570's are being crippled. However, you are going to see a loss in performance in most other games, though it won't be a lot. You might be able to add a 2nd one in a few months, if you want more power.
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a b U Graphics card
August 20, 2012 10:15:19 PM

Mousemonkey said:
Yeah, history is such a pain and its not like it teaches anything. :whistle: 


not as much in the tech world lol. everyone is always one generation away from a good product.
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August 21, 2012 1:56:11 AM

So, is anyone in the market for a 570 GTX or two? :D 
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August 28, 2012 2:32:09 AM

Best answer selected by coprhead6.
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a c 271 U Graphics card
August 28, 2012 5:51:39 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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