So I'm on the hunt for a new GTX 680 i probably will go SLI 680's somewhere in the future that meaning somwhere from 5-6 months or even more than that. (case is a Chaser MK-1 and mobo is a Asus P9x79 PRO)
I've set my sights on 2 specific cards, The GTX 680 Lightning from MSI and the GTX 680 DirectCU 2 TOP card from asus. The reason im going GTX 680 is that im only going to run 1 card for a long time so a 670 SLI wouldnt quite fit my picture (im gaming at 1080p) and i dont think 1 670 is enough for me (call me nuts). Ive looked through the long list of ye awsome 680's and figured that theese 2 are the way to go, as far as overcloking goes i think the Lightning has a bit of an edge over the DCU2 top but that's as far as my knowledge goes.
So, i would really appreciate if you guys could lend me a hand in choosing one of theese 2 badboys, or suggest a better one
Personally i would be all over that Asus 680 TOP for its high factory overclock, improved cooler,heavily modified PCB, with an efficient VRM design to produce low temperatures, improved voltage regulation circuitry, much better Chil controller , specially binned chip and voltage control and monitoring support that you won't find on most other non-reference cards. It looks aggressive to me lol.ASUS is definitely known in the overclocking world for its products due to the simple fact that they overclock very well.
Speaking of special abilities, we have the VGA Hotwire. Anyone who knows about volt-modding a card knows it can cause serious damage. ASUS and their legion of overclockers knew this and made it possible to volt-mod the card with very little work needed and also with a compatible motherboard such as the Rampage IV Extreme a connector can be simply plugged onto the board to allow hardware level voltage manipulation. This is not some simple software control anymore. This is LN2-level modding. Also keep in mind that connecting and overvolting the cards to such extreme levels will likely void the warranty. However, overclocking with LN2 cooling at well over -100C which means you’ve pretty much thrown most chances of warrantying the card out the window anyways. We are very happy to see such features on a card as soldering to SMD’s that some times are little more than the size of a grain of salt can be very troublesome, and with so many densely packed components its far to easy to have an oops moment.
Uploaded with ImageShack.us Here we see the reference of where each connection will be made. Do note that the connections on the card would need to be soldered which requires some soldering knowledge. The motherboard side is as simple as plugging onto the board.
performance wise i would go for the asus top, but since its a 3-slot card you may or may not have problems with sli in the future, depending on what size your case is, the msi gtx 680 lightning is very close to the asus and its only a 2 slot card
the chaser mk1 is a full tower with 8 expansion ports in the back as for the motherboard its a p9x79 pro the lanes are wired 16x-1x- 8x-8x-1x-16x, with 8 ports on the back i pray to god that if i get 2 tripple sloters i can get em running in 16x-16x
Get the asus 680 top. Its the best price for value card on the market. It has extreme overclocking capabilities due to ASUS beast cooling and it is by far the best 680 on the market. if you're willing to spend that much though. Friend of mine have a single one and run BF3 on 2 monitors on Ultra on about 80FPS. Crazy!