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Deciding between GTX 680 and AMD 7950

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I'm looking to upgrade my graphics cards, I currently have SLI GTX 460's but I feel like eventually I'm going to have to upgrade and they're kind of bottlenecking my system...

I've been told be a couple of people that a 7950 can overclock to the equivalent of a 7970. Also, I run three monitors, so I would probably take advantage of the 3gb of Vram found on the 7950... Eventualy I will plan on getting one or two more for crossfire.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150588

That would be the 7950 I would be looking into getting... It also comes with a free copy of dues ex, and a free copy of Dirt 2.

Also, the 5% off coupon takes off 20$.

For the longest time I've been a strict Nvidia/EVGA guy, but I think it's time to break the mold a little... What do you guys think?
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post #2 of 11
what Res are you 3 displays at?
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post #3 of 11
I love that heatsink on the XFX.

The 680 is a better card, no question, and it has a large ceiling for overclocking. But with the availability being so limited, combined with the lower price of the 7950 and the free games, that's probably a better bet.

With that said, I'm not sure how much of any upgrade it will be from SLIed 460s. I have the same EVGA 460s as you, and even the 680 I just picked up wasn't a huge step forward. Those little cards are just beast mode. Your biggest upgrade will be towards available VRAM.
    
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post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Axon14 View Post

I love that heatsink on the XFX.
The 680 is a better card, no question, and it has a large ceiling for overclocking. But with the availability being so limited, combined with the lower price of the 7950 and the free games, that's probably a better bet.
With that said, I'm not sure how much of any upgrade it will be from SLIed 460s. I have the same EVGA 460s as you, and even the 680 I just picked up wasn't a huge step forward. Those little cards are just beast mode. Your biggest upgrade will be towards available VRAM.

Pretty much this. if your running a halfway modern res the v ram would really help other then that, not sure the step up would be worth the investment.
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post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
All together... my resolution is 5760 x 1080. I love my 460's, they are little beasts and I'll be saving them for sure. The only reason I want to upgrade is because I feel limited because of the VRam. I also can't any add more cards to my rig. The only upgrade I can do is overclock and I already have done that. I feel like with the price drop now is my time to grab a new card.

From what I've experienced, stock 460 SLI's are equivalent to a 580. So I'm going to assume the 7950 will be a little faster. Especially if I overclock
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post #6 of 11
I can't belive I'm saying this.. but for that res you may see a benifit going AMD over nvidea right now so id recomend a 7970 over a 680 (I have very little knowlege on the 7950 but id assume the same). If u have to upgrade now AMD is going to better suit your needs I u can wait there's allways the 4 gig 680 on its way.
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post #7 of 11
Sure, you can OC the 7950 past the 7970, but you can overclock the 7970 past that. At your res, AMD certainly closes that gap between the HD 7970 and GTX 680. The 7970 is also $50 cheaper. The only real advantage Nvidia has, from my experience, is stability. I'm coming from single and crossfire 6950's. After switching to Nvidia, my computer almost never crashes.

Here's some graphs at 5760 x 1080 from Tom's:

425

425

425
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post #8 of 11
I wouldn't get the 7950. I game at 5760x1080, have owned both the 7970 crossfire and 680 SLI, and with crossfire and eyefinity, the 7970 drivers were so unstable for me that it was not even funny--it was unusable, to say the least. The 680 SLI has been much smoother, more stable (no crashes), and has performed better with the games that matter most to me right now (bf3 and skyrim). If this were me, I would get the 680, hands down. FYI: the extra 1 GB of vram on the 7970 is overrated, even at 5760x1080 (I play all my games at this resolution).

In the very least, I would sift through each of the owners groups before making a decision.

[Official] AMD Radeon HD 7950/7970 Owners Thread
http://www.overclock.net/t/1196856/official-amd-radeon-hd-7950-7970-owners-thread/9800

[Official] NVIDIA GTX680 Owner's Club
http://www.overclock.net/t/1232473/official-nvidia-gtx680-owners-club/2600
Edited by svthomas - 4/26/12 at 10:43am
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post #9 of 11
I sent my 7970 back and am waiting for the 4gb 680. While the 7970 was great , the drivers weren't and also it didnt feel like a $600 (at the time) upgrade from 2 gtx 470s . a couple weeks after sending it back i got a catleap 2560x1440 monitor. now the 1.2gb vram is crippling my AA in BF3 (altho the monitor is beautiful) . After giving the 7970 a go im going to try the 4gb 680. Regardless of overclock tho i wouldnt get a 7950 as an alternative to 680 , get a 7970 its like $450-$500 now and a much better value at that price.
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post #10 of 11
I don't think that any 1 card is going to max out 5760x1080 with AA turned right up. Anti Aliasing is the killer when it comes to VRAM, turn it up and at that res you will need upwards of 3GB
If it's one card your after - my recommendation would be to get the faster card GTX 680
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