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Computer gaming upgrade forum

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October 15, 2012 10:27:52 PM

I have a computer built by Cyberpower PC and looking to upgrade. I would greatly appreciate anyone's help. I'd like to upgrade to a 3gb video card. What would be the best one? Do I need to upgrade my power supply? Does my motherboard support cross fire so I can still keep my 1gb video card? I'd like to play very demanding games with high fps like Total War Shogun 2.


OEM AMD PHENOM II X4 925 QUAD CORE

1TB SATA III 7200 RPM 3.5" HARD DRIVE 1

2GB DDR3 / 1600 MHZ MEMORY 2 0.00 0.00

FA-WATER-101 ASETEK 510LC 120MM WATERCOOLER

CASE FAN 120 MM

BLACK X-TROOPER JUNIOR LED BLUE MID

CD-135-307 ASUS 12X BLU-RAY COMBO DRIVE

Motherboard: ASUS M5A97 AMD970A AM3 USB3 SATA 3 M


XTREMEGEAR 600 WATT POWER SUPPLY

ONBOARD 7.1 SOUND

AMD RADEON HD 6770 1 GB DDR5 16X
October 16, 2012 12:56:15 AM

Other things you should upgrade are ram. If I were you I would also get 4gb ram or 8 total. I don't understand why you would specifically need 3gb but if you want that get
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
I am sorry to say that you can't crossfire a 6670 with a 7950. You can only cross fire cards that are in the same hunreth ie the 78xx series.
October 16, 2012 2:46:37 AM

Hi lt_dan-zsu, sorry I forgot to mention. Those were my stock parts. I upgraded to 12 gb of ram several months ago. Will my cpu bottleneck a 3 gb gpu?
Related resources
October 16, 2012 3:10:46 AM

Depends on the GPU.

And can you give me some information on that power supply? Commonly pre-built brands do not use good power supply units.
October 16, 2012 3:24:53 AM

You can't just say a 3gb gpu. You really don't need more than 1gb of ram. Soon 2 will make more sense so I would get a card with 2gb cards. But for example, the 7950 has 3gb ram and the 670 has 2gb ram, the 670 is still the stronger card. Ram isn't as big of a factor as OEM manufactures make it look like. If you are playing in 1080p you really don't need more than 2gb ram. But I have a 1gb card and I still haven't gotten a memory bottleneck. Also what games do you play? If all you are playing is shogun 2 I don't feel like you need that powerful of a card.
October 16, 2012 3:49:58 AM

^



Quote:
Regardless of whether we’re looking at AMD or NVIDIA cards, there’s only one benchmark where 2GB cards have a clear lead: Skyrim at 1920 with the high resolution texture pack. For our other 9 games the performance difference is miniscule at best.

But despite the open-and-shut nature of our data we’re not ready to put our weight behind these results. Among other issues, our benchmark suite is approaching a year old now, which means it doesn’t reflect on some of the major games released in the past few months such as XCOM: Enemy Unknown, Borderlands 2, DiRT: Showdown, or for that matter any one of the number of games left to be released this year. While we have full confidence in our benchmark suite from a competitive performance perspective, the fact that it’s not forward looking (and mostly forward rendering) does a disservice to measuring the need for additional memory.

The fact of the matter is that while the benchmarks don’t necessarily show it, along with Skyrim we’ve seen Crysis clobber 1GB cards in the past, Shogun II’s highest settings won’t even run on a 1GB card, and at meanwhile Battlefield 3 scales up render distance with available video memory. Nearly half of our benchmark games do benefit from 2GB cards, a subjective but important quality.

So despite the fact that our data doesn’t immediately show the benefits of 2GB cards, our thoughts go in the other direction. As 2012 comes to a close, cards that can hit the GTX 650 Ti’s performance level are not well equipped for future with only 1GB of VRAM. 1GB is the cheaper option – and at these prices every penny counts – but it is our belief that by this time next year 1GB cards will be in the same place 512MB cards were in 2010: bottlenecked by a lack of VRAM. We have reached that point where if you’re going to be spending $150 or more that you shouldn’t be settling for a 1GB card; this is the time where 2GB cards are going to become the minimum for performance gaming video cards.


http://www.anandtech.com/show/6359/the-nvidia-geforce-g...

Depends how you see things :) 
October 16, 2012 1:08:10 PM

Deemo13 said:
Depends on the GPU.

And can you give me some information on that power supply? Commonly pre-built brands do not use good power supply units.


Hi Deemo13, I believe this is my power supply: http://www.outletpc.com/cg8191.html

Hopefully this provides you with enough info :) 
October 16, 2012 1:12:24 PM

lt_dan_zsu said:
You can't just say a 3gb gpu. You really don't need more than 1gb of ram. Soon 2 will make more sense so I would get a card with 2gb cards. But for example, the 7950 has 3gb ram and the 670 has 2gb ram, the 670 is still the stronger card. Ram isn't as big of a factor as OEM manufactures make it look like. If you are playing in 1080p you really don't need more than 2gb ram. But I have a 1gb card and I still haven't gotten a memory bottleneck. Also what games do you play? If all you are playing is shogun 2 I don't feel like you need that powerful of a card.



Dan,


I don't game much, but when I do, I want to run Shogun 2 with no noticeable drops in framerates, even in large battles (sorry for sounding like the Does Equis guy. I couldn't think of any other way of saying it) I can pretty much max out with my current card, but in large battles it is unplayable. If I could run it at 100 frames/second, as in the graph above, I 'd be very happy with that. But I would also like to extend the life of my rig to 2014, so I can play the latest games until then. Wouldn't an upgrade to a gpu with more memory make sense so I don't have to buy a new PC for a couple of years?
October 16, 2012 1:15:56 PM

amdfangirl said:
^

http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph6359/50609.png

Quote:
Regardless of whether we’re looking at AMD or NVIDIA cards, there’s only one benchmark where 2GB cards have a clear lead: Skyrim at 1920 with the high resolution texture pack. For our other 9 games the performance difference is miniscule at best.

But despite the open-and-shut nature of our data we’re not ready to put our weight behind these results. Among other issues, our benchmark suite is approaching a year old now, which means it doesn’t reflect on some of the major games released in the past few months such as XCOM: Enemy Unknown, Borderlands 2, DiRT: Showdown, or for that matter any one of the number of games left to be released this year. While we have full confidence in our benchmark suite from a competitive performance perspective, the fact that it’s not forward looking (and mostly forward rendering) does a disservice to measuring the need for additional memory.

The fact of the matter is that while the benchmarks don’t necessarily show it, along with Skyrim we’ve seen Crysis clobber 1GB cards in the past, Shogun II’s highest settings won’t even run on a 1GB card, and at meanwhile Battlefield 3 scales up render distance with available video memory. Nearly half of our benchmark games do benefit from 2GB cards, a subjective but important quality.

So despite the fact that our data doesn’t immediately show the benefits of 2GB cards, our thoughts go in the other direction. As 2012 comes to a close, cards that can hit the GTX 650 Ti’s performance level are not well equipped for future with only 1GB of VRAM. 1GB is the cheaper option – and at these prices every penny counts – but it is our belief that by this time next year 1GB cards will be in the same place 512MB cards were in 2010: bottlenecked by a lack of VRAM. We have reached that point where if you’re going to be spending $150 or more that you shouldn’t be settling for a 1GB card; this is the time where 2GB cards are going to become the minimum for performance gaming video cards.


http://www.anandtech.com/show/6359/the-nvidia-geforce-g...

Depends how you see things :) 


Thank you for this informative graph, amdfangirl. What are your suggestions in terms of upgrades for my PC? Any help is appreciated. Although there is practically no noticeable difference between the 1gb and 2gb versions of this card, wouldn't we see framerate differences with the release of newer games in 2013?
October 17, 2012 4:18:07 PM

Basically, I would buy 2GB, but definitely not spend extra money to get 3GB. As I pointed out, Anand pointed out that the games he was testing was about 1 year old. In 2013, that's a 2 year delta. As we know, games get more detailed over time. In short, by 2013, more games will behave like Skyrim. Given the delta between 1GB and 2 GB is $20, $30, I doubt the difference would be worth it.

Wrote this in response to:

lt_dan_zsu said:
You really don't need more than 1gb of ram.


So, give us a budget and we'll find the best graphics card you can get at the price.

I'm coming from a similar computer as yours:

AMD Phenom II X3 @3.7Ghz
Gigabyte 880GMA-USB3
16GB DDR-1333
Radeon HD 4770

In 3 weeks I'm buying a:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I have lower expectations than most (and I'm coming from a slightly older card), but I would strongly recommend against buying anything cheaper than this as an upgrade for your computer. It really depends on your budget, whether or not it will fit into your case (probably more of a concern for me) and how hot of a graphics card you are willing to cool (for my tiny case, this is about the limit).
October 17, 2012 11:00:21 PM

scythron said:
Dan,


I don't game much, but when I do, I want to run Shogun 2 with no noticeable drops in framerates, even in large battles (sorry for sounding like the Does Equis guy. I couldn't think of any other way of saying it) I can pretty much max out with my current card, but in large battles it is unplayable. If I could run it at 100 frames/second, as in the graph above, I 'd be very happy with that. But I would also like to extend the life of my rig to 2014, so I can play the latest games until then. Wouldn't an upgrade to a gpu with more memory make sense so I don't have to buy a new PC for a couple of years?

There is no point in 100fps. The human eye can perceive differences past 60fps, And the 7950 will do that as I have already suggested, but if you just want it to last til 1024 a 7870 will probably do the job fine.
October 18, 2012 2:43:38 AM

That's 100% relative, not fps.

For example, if Student A scores 25 marks and Student B scores 50 marks. If we make a comparison between Student A and B relative to Student A.

Student A: 100% (25 marks)
Student B: 200% (50 marks)

For your enjoyment, here is a graph:



Of course you can always turn down details.
October 19, 2012 3:30:35 AM

lt_dan_zsu said:
There is no point in 100fps. The human eye can perceive differences past 60fps, And the 7950 will do that as I have already suggested, but if you just want it to last til 1024 a 7870 will probably do the job fine.


Will I need to upgrade my power supply as well if I upgrade to a 7870 or 7950?
October 19, 2012 3:33:41 AM

amdfangirl said:
Basically, I would buy 2GB, but definitely not spend extra money to get 3GB. As I pointed out, Anand pointed out that the games he was testing was about 1 year old. In 2013, that's a 2 year delta. As we know, games get more detailed over time. In short, by 2013, more games will behave like Skyrim. Given the delta between 1GB and 2 GB is $20, $30, I doubt the difference would be worth it.

Wrote this in response to:



So, give us a budget and we'll find the best graphics card you can get at the price.

I'm coming from a similar computer as yours:

AMD Phenom II X3 @3.7Ghz
Gigabyte 880GMA-USB3
16GB DDR-1333
Radeon HD 4770

In 3 weeks I'm buying a:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I have lower expectations than most (and I'm coming from a slightly older card), but I would strongly recommend against buying anything cheaper than this as an upgrade for your computer. It really depends on your budget, whether or not it will fit into your case (probably more of a concern for me) and how hot of a graphics card you are willing to cool (for my tiny case, this is about the limit).


Probably would spend up to $300, maybe a little more. Are there usually deals on graphic cards on black Friday on Newegg or any other computer hardware websites?
October 19, 2012 4:00:15 AM

600watt is fine as long as you don't cross fire.
October 19, 2012 11:51:38 PM

scythron said:
Probably would spend up to $300, maybe a little more. Are there usually deals on graphic cards on black Friday on Newegg or any other computer hardware websites?


Yes, Black Friday or on the preceding Monday (Cyber Monday).

If you're spending up to $300, you would need to choose between the HD 7950 or GTX 660 Ti which sell for around $300.

http://www.anandtech.com/print/6159 (ignore the print window). Scroll down see what games you like and which graphic card wins.

Buy on that basis.
!