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Confused- Would like insight: MSI GTX 680 Lightning vs. EVGA GTX 680 FTW vs ASUS MATRIX 7970 Plat

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hey all,

I want to upgrade my GPU, so I've done quite a bit of reading, but it's left me quite confused. I find it very hard to compare different top-end cards. Different benchmark websites seem to pretty different results, and some sites only test stock cards, while others test individual manufacturer specific versions. After doing the research I think I've narrowed it down to these 3 cards, but it's really hard to tell which performs the best. I'll describe my situation below, so people can help me make the best choice. The reading I've done to research the cards was on Anandtech, Tom's Hardware, and HardOCP. I found that HardOCP had the most reviews of manufacturer specific cards available, so a lot the data I gathered about the 3 cards in the title comes from those reviews.


What I want:
I am looking for the single most powerful GPU I can get for around the 500-600 dollar price range. I am not interested in Crossfire or SLI right now. I want to future-proof as much as possible as well. My monitor's native resolution is 2560x1440, but on most games I play at 1920x1080, because I can't get the framerates I want at the higher resolution. I play almost all types of games, so the fact that NVIDIA does better on some games, and AMD does better on others, doesn't really help me, since I don't limit myself to sub-selection that belongs neatly to either company. The rest of my set-up is pretty good with a solid state drive, I7 processor, 12 gigs of ram, etc...

I have a 3 monitor set up, but I only game one 1 screen. All my monitors are different brands/sizes, so it isn't really ideal for multi-monitor gaming. However, it is important to me that I can have all 3 monitors hooked up to 1 card. I know I can do this with AMD, but I haven't owned an NVIDIA card in a while. Do they support me being able to run all 3 monitors off 1 card, even if the monitors are different?

As for overclocking. I've actually never done before, but I'm willing to try it. From reading it doesn't seem that difficult, at least with the NVIDIA cards since all you have to do is flash a bios, an then move some sliders around in MSI afterburnner?


Why I am confused:
All of these cards seem great, but it's really hard to weigh them against each other. I've seen them all tested against stock cards, but not against each other. Each test used slightly different settings as well, so I can't directly compare them. I think I've pieced out enough of a difference between the NVIDIA cards to understand that the MSI GTX 680 Lightning can overclocked to achieve the best FPS results of any of the 3 cards, but the EVGA FTW edition has more virtual ram, which theoretically could be needed if very high-res textures come into play. Is this correct? I'm not really sure where the ASUS 7970 fits into this picture. The HARDOCP review says it achieved the best framerates they've seen in a single card, but when I compare it to the review of the MSI GTX 680 Lightning it seems like it actually has slightly lower framerates. Then again, the tests might have used slightly different settings, so it's hard to interpret.

Thanks for the help!
post #2 of 6
everyone in here have a different opinion, but as for me I would choose MSI GTX 680 Lightning of course...because yeah you can simply flash the bios to the unlocked one...

but if you want to play a game at higher resolution, i would choose matrix platinum, because have a wider memory bus compared to nvidia card,

but it's up to you man, it's your money thumb.gif
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post #3 of 6
The 7970 outperforms the GTX680 in gaming the VAST majority of the time, especially with the newest drivers. However, nVidia has the edge when it comes to folding. Folding? nVidia. Gaming? AMD.

However, if you update your profile to include systems specs and then list a rig in your sig it'll be easier for people to make more educated comments in later threads and/or later in this thread.
 
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post #4 of 6
at 1440p the HD 7970 Ghz is the faster card and by a significant margin. here is a comparison of GTX 680 Lightning vs ASUS HD 7970 Matrix Platinum

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fmuropaketti.com%2Fartikkelit%2Fnaytonohjaimet%2Fasus-rog-matrix-hd-7970-platinum-vs-msi-n680gtx-lightning%2C3
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post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by raghu78 View Post

at 1440p the HD 7970 Ghz is the faster card and by a significant margin. here is a comparison of GTX 680 Lightning vs ASUS HD 7970 Matrix Platinum
http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fmuropaketti.com%2Fartikkelit%2Fnaytonohjaimet%2Fasus-rog-matrix-hd-7970-platinum-vs-msi-n680gtx-lightning%2C3

Are they voltage overclocking the GTX 680 lightning in this comparison? I think that's important, since it's ability to be voltage overclocked is it's strongest strength.
post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketlucco View Post

Are they voltage overclocking the GTX 680 lightning in this comparison? I think that's important, since it's ability to be voltage overclocked is it's strongest strength.

yeah they overclocked with voltage control

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fmuropaketti.com%2Fartikkelit%2Fnaytonohjaimet%2Fasus-rog-matrix-hd-7970-platinum-vs-msi-n680gtx-lightning%2C5

GTX 680 Lightning 1346 Mhz vs ASUS HD 7970 Matrix (1275 Mhz) . HD 7970 was 10% faster in BF3, Sleeping Dogs and around 4 - 5% in Max Payne 3 , Ghost Recon . GTX 680 was 8% faster in 3DMark 11 which is a benchmark and not a game.
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