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7970 Xtreme or Gtx 680 FTW?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 10, 2012 10:45:16 PM

So I'm building a fairly high end computer, for frequent compiling/rendering sketchup models and surround gaming. I'm trying to go for a single card, and was looking at either the 7970 Xtreme Edition from MSI, or the GTX 680 FTW 4gb from EVGA. I'm getting an MPOWER Z77, so the cooler on the 7970 would match my board (definitely a plus) however, in surround gaming does the 7970 Xtreme pull through?

I was thinking that with the bandwidth limitation the 680 4gb wouldn't really be worth it, and because the 7970 has no relevant limitations (bandwidth wise) that it might be better for surround. The gtx 680 lightning wouldn't be worth it (imo) because it only has 2gb, and that's really not enough for surround. I wouldn't OC the graphics cards that much either, because I'm not planning to LC them.

Important parts of the build:

3770k (Definitely gonna OC to 4.5GHz+)
H100i
16gb Corsair Dominator Platinum @ 1866Ghz
Z77 MPOWER
Seasonic X-850
Corsair 650D
3xIntel 520 120gb SSDs (2x RAID 0 for OS and one for games)
WD Caviar Black 1TB for backing up the SSDs

NOTE: I would be gaming at 5760x1080, not 7680x1600.
a c 110 U Graphics card
December 10, 2012 10:51:39 PM

You mean a MSI 7970 lightning ? for that resolution you have to go with the 7970 ghz, it's better and give decent framerates at 5760x1080 (most of the games high/ultra settings).
Or spend in two cheap 670 gtx, for sli setup, it will be better.
December 10, 2012 10:55:31 PM

GTX 7970 is the fastest card on the Planet. nvidia has the Physx and better 3d support.
Related resources
December 10, 2012 10:57:01 PM

Will the 2gb on the stock/lower end 670s be a big limitation?
a b U Graphics card
December 10, 2012 11:00:38 PM

th3m4dh4tt3r said:
Will the 2gb on the stock/lower end 670s be a big limitation?
At those resolutions probably not saying for sure though.
December 10, 2012 11:11:29 PM

So if I'm interpreting that correctly, the 7970 performs better as a single card, and the 680 performs better in SLI? I think I'm gonna go with the 7970 xtreme, because I don't think I will ever upgrade to CrossfireX. Thanks for the help!
a c 110 U Graphics card
December 10, 2012 11:15:31 PM

Yes, single card the 7970 lightning is the best, but for that resolution i'd go with more firepower(two 2GB 670 in SLI is at ~720$).
a c 141 U Graphics card
December 10, 2012 11:19:11 PM

in term of scaling both card do a great job but in term of 'smoothness' nvidia clearly has the advantage. with SLI the game feel smoother even with low frame rates. for CFX to get the same feel of smoothness you need more FPS
December 10, 2012 11:20:42 PM

The only reason I'm hesitant about the two 670s is the fact that they only have 2GB GDDR5, and for surround gaming, it's recommended to have more.
December 10, 2012 11:22:39 PM

renz496 said:
in term of scaling both card do a great job but in term of 'smoothness' nvidia clearly has the advantage.


Is this quantified by reliable sources ?
a c 141 U Graphics card
December 10, 2012 11:30:38 PM

hard ocp always mention this when they compare SLI vs CFX in their 600 series vs 7k series review but they just describe it as their feeling to it. if you want it to be explain in more scientific manner then you can look up for tech report reviews. they relate that 'smoothness' feeling as frame latency and they really did measure that in every gpu review they've done
December 10, 2012 11:37:16 PM

renz496 said:
hard ocp always mention this when they compare SLI vs CFX in their 600 series vs 7k series review but they just describe it as their feeling to it. if you want it to be explain in more scientific manner then you can look up for tech report reviews. they relate that 'smoothness' feeling as frame latency and they really did measure that in every gpu review they've done


Inherent issues with muti GPU scaling are not brand specific. It is always best to go with one powerful GPU rather than two or more lesser Muti GPU configurations so as to avoid undesirable issues inherent to muti GPU configurations.
a c 185 U Graphics card
December 10, 2012 11:37:57 PM

For your monitor res i think 7970 is a better choice
December 10, 2012 11:48:18 PM

Okay, after reading all these helpful comments it seems like the 7970 would be better. However, I was just poking around, and apparently the 680 Lightning Xtreme (680 lightning w/4gb GDDR5) is due to drop sometime very soon. Since money isn't a huge issue I think I might just wait for the 680 lightning Xtreme, since I am sort of an Nvidia fanboy...However, if that doesn't come out in the next month I will definitely go with the 7970. Thanks everybody!
a c 185 U Graphics card
December 10, 2012 11:51:32 PM

th3m4dh4tt3r said:
Okay, after reading all these helpful comments it seems like the 7970 would be better. However, I was just poking around, and apparently the 680 Lightning Xtreme (680 lightning w/4gb GDDR5) is due to drop sometime very soon. Since money isn't a huge issue I think I might just wait for the 680 lightning Xtreme, since I am sort of an Nvidia fanboy...However, if that doesn't come out in the next month I will definitely go with the 7970. Thanks everybody!
Sounds good let us know the outcome if you get the 680 lightning Xtreme i want to know if it beats the Asus 680 Top so far i have not seen a single NV card best it :D 
a c 110 U Graphics card
December 11, 2012 12:07:45 AM

I can't see a single 680 gtx(even the evga classified one) handling most games at 5760x1080 (with high/ultra settings) with ~50 fps.
Not saying if you lower some details and with a overclock card, you can reach 30-40 fps.

http://img.hexus.net/v2/graphics_cards/nvidia/1h5kdhh/3...
http://img.hexus.net/v2/graphics_cards/nvidia/1h5kdhh/3...
http://img.hexus.net/v2/graphics_cards/nvidia/1h5kdhh/3...


For triple monitor, i advice you to go with two 670 gtx, you said money ain't a problem, and it will be the best multi gpu setup bang for the buck, or go big and buy a single card dual gpu like the 690 gtx(very expensive though)
a c 185 U Graphics card
December 11, 2012 12:23:47 AM

djangoringo said:
I can't see a single 680 gtx(even the evga classified one) handling most games at 5760x1080 (with high/ultra settings) with ~50 fps.
Not saying if you lower some details and with a overclock card, you can reach 30-40 fps.

http://img.hexus.net/v2/graphics_cards/nvidia/1h5kdhh/3...
http://img.hexus.net/v2/graphics_cards/nvidia/1h5kdhh/3...
http://img.hexus.net/v2/graphics_cards/nvidia/1h5kdhh/3...


For triple monitor, i advice you to go with two 670 gtx, you said money ain't a problem, and it will be the best multi gpu setup bang for the buck, or go big and buy a single card dual gpu like the 690 gtx(very expensive though)
+1 I agree with this if your going NV 2x 670 in sli for your set up it's best bang for buck imo.
a c 81 U Graphics card
December 11, 2012 12:41:01 AM

Tom Burnqest said:
Inherent issues with muti GPU scaling are not brand specific. It is always best to go with one powerful GPU rather than two or more lesser Muti GPU configurations so as to avoid undesirable issues inherent to muti GPU configurations.


That's when you're talking about low-end cards... with high end cards you live with it, because that's how you get more power. Dual 670s is the way to go, period.
a c 185 U Graphics card
December 11, 2012 1:05:38 AM

DarkSable said:
That's when you're talking about low-end cards... with high end cards you live with it, because that's how you get more power. Dual 670s is the way to go, period.
+1 i have no issues with my setup only thing that sucks is some games i like do not support it. :( 
a b U Graphics card
December 13, 2012 8:44:40 PM

Nobody even mentioned going with 2x 7950s instead of the 670s, i have one 7950 and it does pretty decent on 5760x1080 res by itself not to mention you can AA even at those higher resolutions. I would recommend 2x sapphire 7950 vapor-x for better performance and cheaper that 2x 670s...
a c 185 U Graphics card
December 13, 2012 8:50:14 PM

helper800 said:
Nobody even mentioned going with 2x 7950s instead of the 670s, i have one 7950 and it does pretty decent on 5760x1080 res by itself not to mention you can AA even at those higher resolutions. I would recommend 2x sapphire 7950 vapor-x for better performance and cheaper that 2x 670s...
I could use a hand from someone with a 7950 http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/382296-33-normal-load...
December 13, 2012 9:48:52 PM

I dismissed crossfire as an option after looking at the SLI vs Crossfire benchmarks, it just doesn't seem worth it...if anyone could prove otherwise, I would be interested in looking into CF.
a b U Graphics card
December 15, 2012 6:35:59 AM

th3m4dh4tt3r said:
I dismissed crossfire as an option after looking at the SLI vs Crossfire benchmarks, it just doesn't seem worth it...if anyone could prove otherwise, I would be interested in looking into CF.

The micro stutter does not show itself as often as you think because you will get more fps that your monitors refresh rate and they are so much cheaper than 2x 670s.
!