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MSI GTX 580 Lightning 3GB SLI

post #1 of 8
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Hey everyone, I have found someone local who is selling both of his 580 3GB Lightnings for a total of $750. I know that this is a good price, and I know the performance will be tremendous, especially coming off of a single 6850 in my last build, but I am wondering if you guys think I should spring on this. I run a 2560 x 1440 monitor, so the extra RAM should do me some good, and I do want to max out my games, but is the stuttering with these cards really bad enough to take into consideration, or should I not even worry about it? He says that the cards will run at 990MHz and that we can stress test them as long as I like before buying them, so I am confident that the cards are okay, plus there's that 3 year (serial based?) warranty that I can fall back on if need be. I am also thinking of buying the Bitspower waterblock for each of them, I don't know if that will squeeze any more performance out of them, compared to their max on air. Please just let me know you guys' opinions on this, or if you have owned these cards and have any input on them. Should I spring on this deal and go with the blocks? Should I save some money, wait for the GTX 680 to come into stock and slap a water block on that? Any advice is appreciated!
post #2 of 8
I think for me personally I'd wait to grab a 680 and then possibly sli them later, if you're wiling to spend 750 now then just get one 680 and save that $250 for when the 680 prices start to drop, by then you'll have a few extra bucks to add on top of that and I'm sure you'll enjoy the single 680 now anyway!
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post #3 of 8
Buy 1 680 @ $500
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post #4 of 8
I've been thinking the same thing & actually came to the nvidia area of the forum to post a thread. But since seeing this one i decided just to comment here instead.

Theres alot of rave over these new gtx 680's. Are they really that much worth it over a Gtx 580 that i could get for like $350. Am a gamer running res at 1920x1200. Might upgrade to 2560x1600 in a a few months.

+1rep for thread starter for reading my mind
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post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fighting Games View Post

I've been thinking the same thing & actually came to the nvidia area of the forum to post a thread. But since seeing this one i decided just to comment here instead.
Theres alot of rave over these new gtx 680's. Are they really that much worth it over a Gtx 580 that i could get for like $350. Am a gamer running res at 1920x1200. Might upgrade to 2560x1600 in a a few months.
+1rep for thread starter for reading my mind

As far as I know the new 680's are beasts! The only bad thing is the fact that they have only 2GB of ram, you can always wait for them to come out with the 4GB editions and you know you'll be set for a good long time! If you can afford it I'd go 680 all the way. Unfortunately for me I cannot afford it frown.gif
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post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattbag View Post

As far as I know the new 680's are beasts! The only bad thing is the fact that they have only 2GB of ram, you can always wait for them to come out with the 4GB editions and you know you'll be set for a good long time! If you can afford it I'd go 680 all the way. Unfortunately for me I cannot afford it frown.gif

Having "only" 1.5GB on my 580's and switching between my Surround setup at 5760x1200 and a 27" 2560x1440 monitor, I don't think 2GB on the 680's is really *that* bad. wink.gif

The GTX 680 is one capable GPU that can handle its own (VERY well, I might add) in Surround:

http://bjorn3d.com/articles/Surround_on_a_Stick_Single_Card_Nvidia_Surround_Tested/2208.html

For anyone using a single monitor, even if it is 1440p, which is significantly less pixels to drive than a 1080p Surround setup, the 680 will be up to the task. VRAM really is not an issue unless the OP decides to run three 1440p monitors in Surround, or he chooses to run his games at obscenely high levels of AA. wink.gif By the time, the 680's become irrelevant, it wouldn't matter if you have 2GB or 4GB of VRAM as the GPU itself will lack the necessary processing power to keep up.

To help answer your question, Zach, it depends on how badly you want to upgrade at *now*. If you can wait, and have the money, I think it is always preferable to get the latest and greatest. The 680 is around 20% faster than a 580 (irrespective of how much VRAM it has), can do Surround with a single card, and consumes less power. The benefit I see for the 580's you are looking at is if you enjoy playing games with third party HD texture packs, and/or love to pump up the AA settings to maximum levels, (as I said before) THEN the extra 1GB of VRAM may come in handy.

Also, while I like the premise of watercooling the 580's (as mine are watercooled and silent biggrin.gif), the 680's are reportedly quiet enough to run fine on their stock coolers, and the price you pay for the waterblocks is essentially the price difference between the 580's and 680's. To be fair, the 580's will generally have the same overclocking ceiling, averaging anywhere between 900MHz and 1000MHz, but the performance difference is very minor in games, and great for benchmarks if you are into that.

Essentially, you are paying less with the 580's, but you are getting almost a 1:1 ratio of less performance and less features at the same time. So it comes down to what you value more - getting it now for less, or a little later for more. smile.gif
     
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post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies everyone! Looks like I will try and stick it out and maybe wait for the 680 Lightning or another non-reference design.
Quote:
Originally Posted by covert ash View Post

Having "only" 1.5GB on my 580's and switching between my Surround setup at 5760x1200 and a 27" 2560x1440 monitor, I don't think 2GB on the 680's is really *that* bad. wink.gif
The GTX 680 is one capable GPU that can handle its own (VERY well, I might add) in Surround:
http://bjorn3d.com/articles/Surround_on_a_Stick_Single_Card_Nvidia_Surround_Tested/2208.html
For anyone using a single monitor, even if it is 1440p, which is significantly less pixels to drive than a 1080p Surround setup, the 680 will be up to the task. VRAM really is not an issue unless the OP decides to run three 1440p monitors in Surround, or he chooses to run his games at obscenely high levels of AA. wink.gif By the time, the 680's become irrelevant, it wouldn't matter if you have 2GB or 4GB of VRAM as the GPU itself will lack the necessary processing power to keep up.
To help answer your question, Zach, it depends on how badly you want to upgrade at *now*. If you can wait, and have the money, I think it is always preferable to get the latest and greatest. The 680 is around 20% faster than a 580 (irrespective of how much VRAM it has), can do Surround with a single card, and consumes less power. The benefit I see for the 580's you are looking at is if you enjoy playing games with third party HD texture packs, and/or love to pump up the AA settings to maximum levels, (as I said before) THEN the extra 1GB of VRAM may come in handy.
Also, while I like the premise of watercooling the 580's (as mine are watercooled and silent biggrin.gif), the 680's are reportedly quiet enough to run fine on their stock coolers, and the price you pay for the waterblocks is essentially the price difference between the 580's and 680's. To be fair, the 580's will generally have the same overclocking ceiling, averaging anywhere between 900MHz and 1000MHz, but the performance difference is very minor in games, and great for benchmarks if you are into that.
Essentially, you are paying less with the 580's, but you are getting almost a 1:1 ratio of less performance and less features at the same time. So it comes down to what you value more - getting it now for less, or a little later for more. smile.gif

Thanks for the in depth response!
+Rep
post #8 of 8
sounds like a plan my friend, 2GB should be plenty though especially if you're only using a single monitor so I think waiting is probably pointless. either way good luck and I'm sure you'll be happy with your purchase
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