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Do you need 2GB VRAM?

post #1 of 30
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Hi, I'm upgrading my graphics card, primarily for BF3 which I've read in many places uses more than 1GB VRAM, some people have even reported up to 1.5GB of use. In this case should I be getting a card with 2GB of VRAM? There is one card I like the look of (MSI GTX570 Twin Frozr III - http://www.scan.co.uk/products/1280mb-msi-gtx-570-twin-frozr-iii-power-edition-oc-40nm-4000mhz-gddr5-gpu-770mhz-shader-1540mhz-plus) but it's only 1.3GB and I'm wondering if even that might not be enough. If it wasn't I would be going with a GTX 560 Ti 2GB or a HD6950 2GB. This is pretty much the last thing I need to decide on before picking which card to buy after doing days of research.

My res is 1600x1200, I only use 1 monitor and won't be using dual monitors any time soon.
Edited by smaudioz - 10/2/11 at 3:36pm
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post #2 of 30
Go for the HD6950. It can be unlocked and OC'ed to perform like a 6970. It trumps the 560ti.

http://www.overclock.net/graphics-cards-general/1007081-560-ti-vs-6950-both-2gb.html
post #3 of 30
You could get any of these cards:

GTX 560 2 Gb.
GTX 560Ti 2 Gb.
GTX 570 2.5 Gb.
GTX 580 3 Gb.
GTX 590 3 Gb.
ASUS MARS II 3 Gb.

Radeon HD6870 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6870x2 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6950 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6970 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6990 4 Gb.

Probably more, but those are the ones I could mention right now smile.gif
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post #4 of 30
No, you don't need 1.5 or 2GB of VRAM, not with a single monitor at 1200p or less.

Get the 570 and be happy, its the superior card.
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post #5 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shion314;15152339 
Go for the HD6950. It can be unlocked and OC'ed to perform like a 6970. It trumps the 560ti.

http://www.overclock.net/graphics-cards-general/1007081-560-ti-vs-6950-both-2gb.html

This is only the case for a few cards and even then it's not guaranteed it will work so I'm not planning on it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WhitePrQjser;15152340 
You could get any of these cards:

GTX 560 2 Gb.
GTX 560Ti 2 Gb.
GTX 570 2.5 Gb.
GTX 580 3 Gb.
GTX 590 3 Gb.
ASUS MARS II 3 Gb.

Radeon HD6870 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6870x2 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6950 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6970 2 Gb.
Radeon HD6990 4 Gb.

Probably more, but those are the ones I could mention right now smile.gif

The 570 2.5GB and anything above are too expensive, this 570 i posted is the absolute max I will go to at almost £270.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pioneerisloud;15152367 
No, you don't need 1.5 or 2GB of VRAM, not with a single monitor at 1200p or less.

Get the 570 and be happy, its the superior card.


Ok I also just read some replies posted in another thread I was in saying similar stuff, thanks for the help.
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post #6 of 30
You don't.
I do. (1440p)
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post #7 of 30
Smaudioz the GTX 570 1.2GB can handle gaming very well on single monitor 1920x1200 resolution. In fact you can take on games that use up to 1.75GB of VRAM and won't struggle at all.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shion314;15152339 
Go for the HD6950. It can be unlocked and OC'ed to perform like a 6970. It trumps the 560ti.

http://www.overclock.net/graphics-cards-general/1007081-560-ti-vs-6950-both-2gb.html

1. The OP is looking at a GTX 570 which trumps any unlocked 6950.

Unlocked slightly over clocked or unlockable heavily over clocked 6950 can't catch up to an over clocked 570 or an over clocked 6970 at the end of the day.

2. The unlocked slightly over clocked 6950 2GB or unlockable heavily over clocked 6950 compares quite evenly with the heavily over clocked 560Ti 2GB. They trade blows back and forth very closely where one wins vice versa.
     
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post #8 of 30
A game will store textures & stuff into video memory but it won't access it all at the same time. That's why BF3 can be played without major FPS drops on a GTX 560TI.

If it's optimized correctly it will use an efficient memory swapping algorithm to eliminate the need to access the actual system RAM which would slow the game to a crawl.

Plus GPU speed, stream processors and memory bandwith are important too. That's why you see 0 difference between the GTX 580 1.5GB and the 3GB version.
The card can only "draw" so much detail, it's pointless to provide it with 3, 6, 10 or 100GB of Vram unless you also bump the GPU speed, the number of stream processors and memory bandwidth.

Think about the GTS 450 2GB. Why isn't it faster than the 1GB 460 ?

Hope this clears some of these stupid issues coming up all the time.

The cards we have right now are not powerful enough to handle 2GB of constant texture streaming so even if a game required that much you wouldn't be able to max it.
Edited by Wulfgar - 10/2/11 at 8:44pm
post #9 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wulfgar;15155829 
-snip-

The cards we have right now are not powerful enough to handle 2GB of constant texture streaming so even if a game required that much you wouldn't be able to max it.

Actually, that's incorrect. We are MORE than capable of utilizing 2-3GB of VRAM as it sits right now (6970's and 580's). Problem being, it requires 2, 3, or 4 of those cards, and an INSANELY high resolution (3x 1080p monitors or bigger).

For any single 1900x1200 display (or smaller), I agree. There's no reason to buy a card based off VRAM, especially when a 1GB card is sufficient like the 560Ti or the 460 1GB. You only need higher VRAM amounts when you use 1440p or 1600p, or multiple monitors (as of right now).
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post #10 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arizonian;15154337 
Smaudioz the GTX 570 1.2GB can handle gaming very well on single monitor 1920x1200 resolution. In fact you can take on games that use up to 1.75GB of VRAM and won't struggle at all.



1. The OP is looking at a GTX 570 which trumps any unlocked 6950.

Unlocked slightly over clocked or unlockable heavily over clocked 6950 can't catch up to an over clocked 570 or an over clocked 6970 at the end of the day.

2. The unlocked slightly over clocked 6950 2GB or unlockable heavily over clocked 6950 compares quite evenly with the heavily over clocked 560Ti 2GB. They trade blows back and forth very closely where one wins vice versa.

1. Completely wrong, a hd 6950 will overclock just as much as a 6970 unless you are using ln2, check hwbot if in doubt as a very large number of Hd 6950's run at 1Ghz on the core 1500Mhz on the memory; a HD 6970 can't do much better.

2. It takes an overlocked gtc 560ti to even compete with a standard HD 6950 let alone overlocked. Check out the anadtech/hardocp/guru3d reviews if in doubt.


As for the original question, no you don't need 2gb but it's a nice touch if you like high levels of AA/ Hd textures and play the right games. I enjoy playing oblivion/fallout and regularly use around 1.7GB vram with all the extra texture mods and high AA while maintaining 50+ fps at 1920x1200.
Edited by BZ1891 - 10/10/11 at 11:53am
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