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New to the NVIDIA boat.

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Well, I greedily snagged the 7970's back and January and have anything but impressed by the $1100 I spent on launch day. They're hot, noisy, and the drivers crash after 5-6 hours of heavy gaming on weekends. They can't even do ultra in BF3 on my three monitors, while I'm watching the 690 shatter the 60FPS mark on ultra. So as the title says, I know my stuff on crossfire, but SLI is new. I need to be able to play BF3 at Ultra on my three monitors. I would be OK with turning Anti-Aliasing to 2X. So I have my cards listed on eBay for $850, and have received numerous offers, so they should be gone by Sunday. With this money, I'm going to go green. I need to know what I should buy. Should I get two 670's, two 680's, a 690, or get a 4gb 680. Another question I have is about the VRAM usage in SLI. Would I be able to use one 4gb card, and one 2gb card to save money, or would both need to be 4gb? Crossfire only utilizes the top GPU's VRAM, which is the source of my curiosity. These cards will be with me until the launch of the GK110. Budget would be about $1100 but I'd prefer to not spend all of that.

Thanks guys!
Ivysaur
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Ivysaur
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post #2 of 15
I think SLI 680s or a 690 would be great for BF3, but I would wait and see how the 670 turns out as it may be quite a bit cheaper, but almost as good than the 680. As for the VRAM question, if you wanted 4gb, you must buy two 4gb cards. If you bought a 4gb and a 2gb, it would limit the 4gb to just 2gb.

I hope you enjoy nvidia. My bro has a 6970 and he definitely has to hassle with things like drivers and such. Nvidia drivers are super simple. smile.gif
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
Great to hear. I'll see the reviews for the 670 tomorrow I guess. I hope it can pull it off. Maybe I'll get a non reference cooling solution.
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Ivysaur
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post #4 of 15
When thinking of going ref or non-ref, you really need to consider 2 things. Do you play to WC your build in the future? Some waterblocks don't fit non-ref cards. Also, some other fan designs may put hot air back into the case. My 560ti pushes some air out the back, but also some inside with the fan in the middle. I don't have to worry about it too much though as I have my h100 as intake in the top of my case, so it always gets cool air.
post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 
I'll be WC the GK110's, but that is far from now. For now I'll be using the fans. What's the best sound/performance ratio cooler on the 680's? Biased opinions are excepted biggrin.gif
Ivysaur
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Intel i7-2600k @ 4.62GHz Asrock Professional 3 Gen 3 Z68 2 Sapphire Radeon 7970's 16GB G.Skill Ripjaws X 1600 MHz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
1 TB WD Caviar Black Samsung Blu-ray Combo Drive XSPC RX240 Watercooling kit. Windows 7 64 bit 
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Ivysaur
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120gb Corsair Force GT 
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Intel i7-2600k @ 4.62GHz Asrock Professional 3 Gen 3 Z68 2 Sapphire Radeon 7970's 16GB G.Skill Ripjaws X 1600 MHz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
1 TB WD Caviar Black Samsung Blu-ray Combo Drive XSPC RX240 Watercooling kit. Windows 7 64 bit 
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post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SammichThyme View Post

I'll be WC the GK110's, but that is far from now. For now I'll be using the fans. What's the best sound/performance ratio cooler on the 680's? Biased opinions are excepted biggrin.gif

I'll be installing the loop in my planned Haswell build.
Ivysaur
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Catleap 2560x1440p 1050w Seasonic Caselabs M8 Creative Recon3D 
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120gb Corsair Force GT 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7-2600k @ 4.62GHz Asrock Professional 3 Gen 3 Z68 2 Sapphire Radeon 7970's 16GB G.Skill Ripjaws X 1600 MHz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
1 TB WD Caviar Black Samsung Blu-ray Combo Drive XSPC RX240 Watercooling kit. Windows 7 64 bit 
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Ivysaur
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1 TB WD Caviar Black Samsung Blu-Ray combo drive XSPC Raystorm, Two UT60 360mm Rads Windows 7 64 bit 
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120gb Corsair Force GT 
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Intel i7-2600k @ 4.62GHz Asrock Professional 3 Gen 3 Z68 2 Sapphire Radeon 7970's 16GB G.Skill Ripjaws X 1600 MHz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
1 TB WD Caviar Black Samsung Blu-ray Combo Drive XSPC RX240 Watercooling kit. Windows 7 64 bit 
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post #7 of 15
I know many people love MSI's Twin Frozr. It's dual fan configuration, but like I posted earlier, I think a fair amount of the heat goes back into the case.
post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by SammichThyme View Post

Great to hear. I'll see the reviews for the 670 tomorrow I guess. I hope it can pull it off. Maybe I'll get a non reference cooling solution.

Water cool! Water cool! Water cool them!

Btw, your avatar makes me lol
 
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Plastic Jesus
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post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marbleduck View Post

Water cool! Water cool! Water cool them!
Btw, your avatar makes me lol

I'm still pissed I went with the HAF-X. My case would need more rads for GPU's. I updated my proposed rig to my current plans though.
Ivysaur
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1 TB WD Caviar Black Samsung Blu-ray Combo Drive XSPC RX240 Watercooling kit. Windows 7 64 bit 
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Ivysaur
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1 TB WD Caviar Black Samsung Blu-Ray combo drive XSPC Raystorm, Two UT60 360mm Rads Windows 7 64 bit 
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Catleap 2560x1440p 1050w Seasonic Caselabs M8 Creative Recon3D 
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120gb Corsair Force GT 
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Intel i7-2600k @ 4.62GHz Asrock Professional 3 Gen 3 Z68 2 Sapphire Radeon 7970's 16GB G.Skill Ripjaws X 1600 MHz 
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post #10 of 15
Just a point of clarification, both SLI and Crossfire 'use' the vram of both cards, and they work exactly the same.

The reason your memory 'capacity' is that of only one card (whichever has less vram, if they're not the same) is because in either SLI/XF, the same contents are mirrored across the memory of each card. It works much like RAID-1 (mirroring) on hard drives. So in either case, you must have 2x4GB cards to get 4GB of mem capacity.

For games right now, the 2GB cards will handle 3 screens easily as long as they're not the 30" monsters. But I'd consider getting SLI 4gb cards (either the 670 or 680, whichever you can afford) if you want to be REALLY future proof.
Edited by brettjv - 5/9/12 at 11:08pm
    
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