590, plus prices will dorp with future releases letting u go quad sli, which sounds like to much fun to pass up ( i no its probs a pain, but just listen to it come out of ur mouth,., is so nice .... quad sli ...), at the same price as a 7970 u are getting that performance for less and now, covers all the points
ur in a luck spot to get the 590 for that
/facepalm wow some of these recommendations are based on nothing but brand loyalists heresay and offer you nothing concrete to base your decision on.
First off, what rez do you plan on playing games at? This helps determine the amount of vram you should be looking for in your next purchase.
I have had experience with 590's in sli, 6990 in cfx and tri sli 580's and there is plenty to be said on the subject. First, I am not a brand fanboy. I am a fanboy of quality products and proper support.
Personally I would rule out the 590 off the bat. The card does indeed come with 3gb of vram but that total is split between each gpu. In sli mode the data in the vram is mirrored so in actuality you have 1.5gb's of usable vram. Depending on what rez you game at, this option is the least future proof. BF3 and other leading edge titles going forward are vram hogs (again the rez you game at has a lot to do with this, especially if you plan on gaming on multiple monitors) and your only option to add more gfx hp is to sli the 590 with another 590. Quad gpu setups require a lot of driver love and sli/cap profile updates to work properly and its more of a headache than it’s worth. Trust me. Just because you have a flagship product doesn’t mean you get the driver support you would expect. In reality the opposite is true because companies tend to choose to first support their products based on which products the majority of their user base has.
The 7970 is brand new and as of yet unproven other than the most popular games as well as the same standard slew of available benchmarks. From those results we can draw that the card itself performs great so far. What can’t be determined is the quality of their driver support going forward. AMD has recently been quoted of saying they are going to be dumping a lot more cash into driver support and R&D with game developers moving forward, but that remains to be seen. I can say from my current experience up until now the support has been lackluster. The problem with their drivers (again up until now) are with the all around quality, QC and the speed at which they resolve issues. I have found that one driver will fix a game, but break two others in the process and this changes from game to game, driver release to driver release. It seems to always be one step forward, two steps back with AMD. Not to mention all the crossfire application profiles (caps) that can be a nightmare. If you went with the 7970 for now, you would have a single gpu thus at the very least,negating any issues that come with going crossfire. Even then if you were to get a second card down the road you would have much less crossfire issues that those with tri and quad setups. In theory at least and again they 'say' this will improve.
So overall it’s a tough call. Latest and greatest architecture with the risk of driver hell – 7970
The least future proof because of the lack of vram (rez dependant) and only one sli option, another 590 and all the driver support needed for quad gpu setup to run right? 590
3gb 580 is also an option and would provide the least issues with great performance, but you would to more than likely pay more $ just to afford one card, let alone a second one down the road. We have yet to see anything concrete on their next gen release dates but suffice to say a second 3gb 580 will be much cheaper once the next gen comes out.