Hey guys, pretty much narrowed it down to these two cards.
The 670 PE 2GB is available for $500 at a shop in AUS, while the 7970 Lightning 3GB is available for $550.
I'm happy to pay the extra 50, if its worth it. I am currently playing at 1080p, but at December when I plan to purchase it, I'll also be getting a 1440p monitor.
I really want to get the 7970, but somehow the PhysX and Cuda stuff I see draws me in, but since I'll be playing at 1440p the 3GB on the 7970 draws me in as well.
I will be planning to overclock, but is the Lightning version worth it for the Ocing? (Are all 7970's voltage unlocked?). Also, which 7970 is the best one? The DCUII TOP 7970 is $530, but is clocked much lower than the 7970.
^ Yeah the reason why i was thinking it's maybe better is because one of my friends him and his brother have 7970 and 670 PE the one brother has Sapphire HD 7970 Ghz Edition VaporX and the other has MSI GTX 670 Power Edition Twin Frozr IV in the tests they ran against each other the cards traded blows no clear winner they both were pissed neither of their cards spanked the other lol
The 3GB is only really need for 3 monitors. The 670 should have faster frame rates. I saw a benchmarkof power edition beating reference 680. I am currently considering the 670 and am in Aus. Where did you find that price?
The Power Edition is $500 at PCCG, and the 7970 which I'm most likely to get, is $550 at Skycomp. happy shopping. The problem is I doubt 2GB is going to be enough at 1440P maxed out, and 3GB is alot more future proof with a higher memory bandwidth as well. Its cooler and more efficient, and I'd love to get the DCII 7970, but I've heard its voltages are locked for some reason, which completely defeats the fact of getting such a good cooler.
At a $50 premium over a 670, the Lightning is worth it for 1440p gaming.
It's a good overclocker, but what you really pay for is the longevity of the card - the better components/power circuitry means less chance of a VRM blowing up in a year or two if you overclock (compared to like the ASUS DCUII).
The Lightning also has the best all around cooling solution available, since it has great cooling not only on the GPU chip itself but also the memory and VRMs. I think only the Sapphire Vapor-X cooler comes close to it. The DCUII is a great cooler on the chip but not as much on the VRMs and memory.
Downsides of the lightning:
-Unlikely to OC any higher than cheaper custom 7970s. ~1200 MHz seems to be the threshold for custom 7970s.
-It's kinda loud when overvolted and overclocked. If you're planning on OC'ing this thing to the limit, I hope you game with headphones.
-Power draw is absolutely freaking insane... this thing can suck down 350W of juice when overclocked.
If you were gaming at 1080p, I'd say that it's a pick-em between the 670 PE OC and the 7970 Lightning at those price points, but since you're going 1440p, the Lightning is a great choice. 3GB vram will help at 1440p.
CUDA is meaningless for gaming and PhysX is only used in like 2 games. If you know you're only going to be playing something like Batman:AC and Borderlands 2, go ahead and get Nvidia, but otherwise PhysX is nothing but a marketing gimmick.
lol there more than two games your drinking to much red kool aid today bud but yes at that res i recommend the 7970 as well OP he owns the card so he knows what it can do
Sweet, someone who actually has the card I'm looking for. Benchmark wise, how does this card perform compared to the 670? Comprehensively, or barely? The GTX 680 Lightning is also available for $600, and again I wouldn't mind paying $50 more since I can overclock that card again. But since the lightning doesn't get especially special overclocks, would I be better off getting another cheaper card, or a GTX 680 lightning?
Whats the best 7970 though? I really appreciate your help, but you saying that it overclocks no higher than other card really makes it seem pointless to buy that particular card. Since I'm going for a quiet/silent and cool build, would it be better to buy like a Gigabyte 7970 for $480 Ghz which is already overclocked at 1100 Core and 6000 memory, it seems too good to pass up on.
EDIT: When should we roughly expect the HD 8*** series? Any chance of it coming early next year? I feel like I am really only upgrading for Crysis 3, in which case I'm happy to wait until February to hear some news about it. I game right now on a 7850 from Sapphire, and that is currently more than enough, but when I get to 1440p I really doubt its going to do well.
If you're only upgrading for Crysis 3, wait for it to come out and then upgrade to a new series card that handles it better - we should be seeing the next gen of cards around then (HD 8k / GTX 7xx series).
I myself am thinking of upgrading to a GTX 780 sometime next year.
Can't comment about AUS because I don't know the pricing structure of 7970s there, but the best 7970 right now in the US is the Sapphire 7970 Vapor-X GHz edition (it's available at $450, the Lightning is $480). The 7970 Lightning is definitely the best of the original 7970s, but a couple of the GHz edition cards are nicer.
+1 i would wait for next series only card that has impressed me was the Asus 670 Top which can't be found anywhere and would not game well on that high a res your best bet is waiting it out till next series or getting the Vapor-X