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7870 or gtx 660

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a b U Graphics card
October 9, 2012 8:17:10 PM

I am mainly interested in Bf3, but also other first person type games. Benchmarks for BF3 seem to indicate that the GTX660 is kicking butt, but I see many comments indicating that the 7870 is a much better bang for the buck. I just want the best card I can get for under $250.

Coming from a Radeon 5770 and using a Sandy Bridge i5 if that matter. I want high quality and smooth at up to 1920x1080 on a single monitor and at least a couple years of relevancy with this purchase.

More about : 7870 gtx 660

a b U Graphics card
October 9, 2012 8:29:43 PM

twelve25 said:
I am mainly interested in Bf3, but also other first person type games. Benchmarks for BF3 seem to indicate that the GTX660 is kicking butt, but I see many comments indicating that the 7870 is a much better bang for the buck. I just want the best card I can get for under $250.

Well you said it best yourself right here. BF3 has proven to be a strong title for Nvidia. You'll find that architectures vary quite a bit between the graphics card makers, so naturally so do the results. It does seem the 7870 is the better all-around card, the two trade blows but the 7870 proves to be a little more competent in more cases than the 660. If the 660 dropped a little on price, and faired a little better in things like direct compute and AA and AF filtering, then it would probably be the better buy. If Battlefield 3 is a very important title to get the best you can for this game as your main target, then get the 660. As you said though, best all-around, get the 7870.
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a b U Graphics card
October 9, 2012 8:50:51 PM

Excellent BF3 performance/at least a couple years of relevancy? You cannot have both not with the 660 at least. For BF3 the 660 will be just fine @ 1080p, with less bandwidth however its definitely not going to last unless you want to sacrifice gaming quality down the road.
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a b U Graphics card
October 9, 2012 8:58:57 PM

If you overclock, then not even BF3 can save the 660 from the 7870's incredible scaling efficiency. Throw in some good MSAA and the 660 drops behind, especially with overclocking. If you don't overclock, then it can depend on whether you want some good MSAA or not with heavy MSAA favoring AMD and light or no MSAA favoring Nvidia.
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a b U Graphics card
October 9, 2012 9:22:57 PM

redeemer said:
Excellent BF3 performance/at least a couple years of relevancy? You cannot have both not with the 660 at least. For BF3 the 660 will be just fine @ 1080p, with less bandwidth however its definitely not going to last unless you want to sacrifice gaming quality down the road.



Relevancy means I can play most games for the next two years with decent performance, I don't mean have a top tier card for 2 years. Obviously new games and cards come out and cards slide down the charts. But my current 5770 is still pretty decent and has played most titles I have thrown at it up until recently. I just don't want to be forced into upgrading next spring or something like that.



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a b U Graphics card
October 9, 2012 9:28:34 PM

I doubt that any card would force you to upgrade next Spring, but the 7870 would probably have a better chance of being a little more future-resistant.
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a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2012 12:57:07 AM

twelve25 said:
Relevancy means I can play most games for the next two years with decent performance, I don't mean have a top tier card for 2 years. Obviously new games and cards come out and cards slide down the charts. But my current 5770 is still pretty decent and has played most titles I have thrown at it up until recently. I just don't want to be forced into upgrading next spring or something like that.

If you're this worried about things more down the road, forget about the 660 then and go for the stronger option for your money. In personal experience, the 7870 scales practically 1:1, which is rare. So if you overclock it by 20%, expect a 20% increase in performance numbers. This card can be found for $200 after MIR or $220 on normal sales, so it's still below your dollar range. You will not get the most FPS in BF3 with this card, but you still have a lot of horsepower here and this card excels at more things than the Kepler architecture does - have faith in this. To pit these two fairly against one another, the 7870 is really between the 660 and 660Ti (closer to the Ti model in more than you would think). The only reason this is so is because the 660 is a fairly balanced card with the Ti model having a very powerful GPU but it suffers from memory bottlenecking and holds it back, only the GTX670 alleviates this bandwidth problem.
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