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Upgrading graphics card to top of the line?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 15, 2013 3:06:02 AM

Hello, i built my first rig a couple months back and included a MSI 7870 Hawk card in it. And while it is fine for now in running games in very high/ ultra (with an overclock) in a couple months time i want to get a card that blows it out of the water. Im thinking about making the switch to Nvidia. I know a single Nvidia card would be compatible with my motherboard, but would it cause any throttling? (the motherboard does have a PCIe 3.0 slot) I am planning on getting a card that is near top of the line if not the top. Here are my specs:

Intel i5 Processor 3470 CPU
8 GB RAM
MSI 7870 Hawk Addition 2GB GPU (Overclocked)
ASRock Motherboard
550W PSU

Will my CPU cause any bottlenecking? And lastly will a top of the line card run on a 550w PSU?

Thanks,
Jacob
a b U Graphics card
January 15, 2013 3:17:24 AM

CPU should be okay, but you might need a new PSU, depending on how top of the line you want to get. See http://forum-en.msi.com/faq/article/power-requirements-...
You haven't specified the model of PSU you have now, but if it provides 38 amps on the +12v rail, it might be able to handle a GTX 680. However, that's only two tiers above the amd 7870 on the graphics card hierarchy chart. A GTX 590 or GTX 690 would require more power.
January 15, 2013 2:04:03 PM

How about on the amd side? Can't run xfire as the hawk is a little too wide
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a b U Graphics card
January 15, 2013 2:08:55 PM

jacobtmaas said:
How about on the amd side? Can't run xfire as the hawk. And is a little too wide


Whats the model of your psu
a b U Graphics card
January 15, 2013 2:09:43 PM

Stay with what you have till the next gen of nvidia/amd cards come out should only be a few more months. You have a decent setup and no real reason to upgrade, you will be better off in the long run waiting.
January 15, 2013 2:56:03 PM

Is there a group that reports these things? I would love to know when new hardware comes out.
a b U Graphics card
January 15, 2013 2:58:16 PM

jacobtmaas said:
Is there a group that reports these things? I would love to know when new hardware comes out.


Thats cool you wanna know when new hardware comes out just theres a few people wondering what psu you have so you dont screw up..Hopefully u dont have a cheap end one
a b Î Nvidia
a b U Graphics card
January 15, 2013 3:11:30 PM

The performance gain from upgrading right now wouln't be very significant compared to what you pay. Radeon 7870 is a great mid-end GPU for 1080p and I think you should wait until prices are different, or until the next series of GPUs arrive and see if they have improved a lot since the last series.

Here you can see the value of the GPUs and yours has excellent value.

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Club_3D/HD_7870_joke...

January 15, 2013 4:02:43 PM

Sorry had to check newegg As I am out and about today.


XFX Core Edition PRO550W (P1-550S-XXB9) 550W ATX12V 2.2 & ESP12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply
January 15, 2013 4:07:53 PM

lostgamer_03 said:
The performance gain from upgrading right now wouln't be very significant compared to what you pay. Radeon 7870 is a great mid-end GPU for 1080p and I think you should wait until prices are different, or until the next series of GPUs arrive and see if they have improved a lot since the last series.

Here you can see the value of the GPUs and yours has excellent value.

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Club_3D/HD_7870_joke...



For the most part I love my card, but it sometimes has issues running ultra on my 1080p screen (40in). on far cry 3 I'd hit about 36-40 frames on ultra. I'm just concerned that my card may have more issues as time goes on and new better looking games are released.

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a b Î Nvidia
a b U Graphics card
January 15, 2013 4:40:15 PM
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jacobtmaas said:
For the most part I love my card, but it sometimes has issues running ultra on my 1080p screen (40in). on far cry 3 I'd hit about 36-40 frames on ultra. I'm just concerned that my card may have more issues as time goes on and new better looking games are released.


If you look at the benchmarks then the high-end GPUs also struggle.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/far-cry-3-performan...

MY advice is to just turn off MSAA and leave everything else on ultra.

My old GTX 660 played it at an average 50 FPS without MSAA at ultra settings, with FXAA and at 1080p.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRnKfQaVVwM

Your Radeon 7870 is a little faster than the GTX 660, so it should fare better in Far Cry 3. :) 
January 22, 2013 5:17:58 AM

Best answer selected by Jacobtmaas.
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