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HD 6950 worth getting for 95$?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 14, 2013 7:54:43 PM

Hello,
I currently have an HD 4980 from XFX, and even though I can still run most games that were released 2-3 years ago maxed out / high settings at 50-40 FPS, I am looking to do an upgrade in the meantime, before getting a whole PC upgrade. I have an AMD Phenom II x4 955 BE non OC, and I have yet to see a bottleneck due to my CPU (the only 2 games that clearly showed it were Witcher 2 and StarCraft 2).

Anyways, I was looking to get a high end card in the price range of $330, so either the GTX 670 / GTX 660 TI or HD 7950 / HD 7970, but then a friend of mine offered me to sell his HD 6950 for $95. According to AnardTech, it almost doubles the FPS in some games for such a small price point:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/513?vs=510

I am gaming at 1080p on a single screen, but I have a multi screen setup that I use to work. Should I get this small second hand upgrade until the new gen GPUs are out or even the 9XXX series or what not, or invest in a GTX 670 / GTX 660 TI or HD 7950 / HD 7970 in the $330 price range?

Thanks

EDIT:
also another quick question:
If someone suggests to get one of the high end cards I listed above, is it worth spending 20-30$ more to get a card with better cooling than a reference cooler (for example a card made by Zotac vs Gigabyte)?

More about : 6950 worth

a b U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 8:51:37 PM

Well I just offered to sell my friend my old 6970 for 50€ or about $64. Your friend sucks. :D 
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a b U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 8:54:43 PM

I was just joking. Well, I'd say it depends whether that card is reference or aftermarket card. This also answers your second question; Aftermarket cards usually run at lower temperatures and generate less noise. The lower temps allow you to adjust the card to a higher clock and thus potentially get a little bit more performance out of it.

Reference cards can be overclocked too, but with stock cooling you better be deaf if you're going to try it.
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a b U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 9:01:02 PM

i bought a 6950 about 5 months ago for 160 usd. that was the cheapest i could fine on ebay.
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a c 78 U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 9:05:02 PM

the 6950 will perform similar to a 7850. depending on the model $95 is fair. Take a look at Ebay(although they may pay more to get a second for crossfire). You are saving him some trouble though and if it is a reference, 1GB that can't be unlocked $95 is high. Not really a "friend" price. If its a high end custom like a 6950 toxic that's different. Id give him $95 in a heartbeat to match my current card lol.

I would not touch zotac. Get a good brand like sapphire/gigabyte/xfx/Asus. And custom cards are more than just the cooler, the PCB is custom with better vrms, binning, overclocking and the cooler can be a big deal too if you don't like noise.

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a b U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 9:09:12 PM

If you're planning on buying an entirely new card, the GTX 660 TI is definitely in the 'sweet spot'. It offers very good performance for gaming at 1080p at a very affordable price. I'd say always go for the aftermarket ones when you can. As for which one; just see for yourself: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-660-ti-...
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a b U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 9:16:14 PM

I've got a 6950 2GB and it's running skyrim at 1920x1200 at max settings. but I'm going to guess that in a year or so, it won't be able to run the newest, most demanding games at top settings. still, I don't know if you're going to find anything that performs better for $95.
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a b U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 9:16:28 PM

unksol said:
the 6950 will perform similar to a 7850. depending on the model $95 is fair. Take a look at Ebay(although they may pay more to get a second for crossfire). You are saving him some trouble though and if it is a reference, 1GB that can't be unlocked $95 is high. Not really a "friend" price. If its a high end custom like a 6950 toxic that's different. Id give him $95 in a heartbeat to match my current card lol.

I would not touch zotac. Get a good brand like sapphire/gigabyte/xfx/Asus. And custom cards are more than just the cooler, the PCB is custom with better vrms, binning, overclocking and the cooler can be a big deal too if you don't like noise.


wow to say zotac doesnt make a good card is a little unfair and not true.
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a c 78 U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 9:27:16 PM

cbrunnem said:
wow to say zotac doesnt make a good card is a little unfair and not true.


Didn't say they didn't. I said I wouldn't touch them. Brand recommendations are based on known information and experiences, and his question was a reference zotac, when a good custom card is $20 more. zotac clearly has a pricing problem.
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a b U Graphics card
January 14, 2013 9:44:49 PM

If I could find a 6950 2 Gig model for 95$ (assuming it was in good condition) I would buy it in a heard beat and I currently have aa 6850 which works great for me but it only has 1 Gig of Ram. See if you can talk him down to say 85 or 90 if you can I mean you could buy and probably sell it for $150 on ebay so still a good deal @95.
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January 15, 2013 4:14:37 PM

Thanks for all the replies, it's a MSI 1 GB model, but with a custom cooler. He said I can try it out for a week, and then if I like it I can buy it, so I'll see how it goes.
"hizodge" said that the GTX 660 TI is a decent choice aswell, what's the sale price I should be aiming at? i saw some models on NCIX at 250$, but with the Black Friday and Xmas sales just a few weeks back, I'm not sure if it's the ideal price.
Thanks
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a b U Graphics card
January 15, 2013 5:02:05 PM

Well in the 660ti comparison that I linked to you three stood out; Asus, Gigabyte and MSI.

I would personally pick Gigabyte or MSI. If you want the card to run absolutely silent, then go for Asus but keep in mind that it comes with a slightly lower base clock than the other two contenders. As for the ones I recommended; MSI gives best overall performance and their products are always top notch. However, Gigabyte comes at a better value.

I don't live in NA so I can't really advise you on pricing there. I'd say $250 is a good deal.
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January 15, 2013 8:25:44 PM

Best answer selected by jackleblack.
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