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Crossfire HD 7850 or upgrade to HD 7950 ?

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
So currently I have the system in my signature, with a single XFX HD 7850 2GB @ 1015/1375.

It's not really cutting it as far as performance goes, for my needs at least. I want better scores in things like the new unigene valley benchmark. On the extreme HD settings I average around 28 FPS. Playing Crysis 3 on all high (not ultra) settings with AA off, I get about 30-35 FPS, but in many areas it drops to a stuttering 15-20FPS and makes it rather unplayable.

I mean most other games I can just about max out for the most part, but I want even more headroom and to be able to turn AA up to max setting in all my games and still maintain a playable FPS. I game @ 1080p by the way.

So here's the deal. My spending limit for this upgrade is around $325.

My main problem right now with upgrading my graphics is my power supply. This is the power supply I have: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817148022

Output says: +3.3V@38A, +5V@40A, +12V1@22A, +12V2@24A, -5V@0.3A, -12V@0.8A, +5VSB@2A

Supposed to be "680W" but I doubt it's actually putting out that much, as with many power supplies. It's also only rated at > 70% efficiency which isn't all to fantastic.

Pretty sure that's not going to be enough amps for 2 HD 7850s in crossfire. Also, it says there is only 2 x 6 pin PCI Express connectors, but mine has 4 ? I dunno why. Still the same model, I still have the box and everything. My manual even states the same spec as only having two, but I still have 4 x 6 pin connectors. So while not having enough connections would have been a problem when going for crossfire, as the XFX HD 7850 require 2 x 6 pin, it's actually not an issue. So disregard that fact as connections won't be a problem.

So if I were to buy another HD 7850, I would also buy a new power supply, this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817153157

I know that would be sufficient for the crossfire.

But, for just about the same total price, actually a little less, I can buy an HD 7950 instead. I'm not sure if my power supply is adequate for one even after looking at tons of graphs, mainly because I'm not sure of amperage draw. I think it would be ok, but I'd like to hear opinions from others about it. My power supply isn't that fantastic by any means.

Opinions on what would be the better option ? I really want to get better graphics performance but many people dislike crossfire because of driver issues, game compatibility issues, stuttering etc., that I'm thinking the HD 7950 would be a better idea.

As far as what brand HD 7950 I would choose, I'm not sure. I'd also like opinions on what the best for the money is.

All 7950s come with Crysis 3 and Bioshock Inf. It's a pretty good deal, while the HD 7850 comes with Bioshock Inf. and Tomb Raider instead, along with 4GB of DDR3 but I'll have zero use for it.

Also, I want to note that I can't seem to overclock past my current cards settings. I had it set @ 1100/1400 and was playing the new Devil May Cry for around 20 minutes when my computer completely hard rebooted without any BSOD. I'm not sure if my card is just unstable at those clocks or if my PSU isn't enough for the higher overclocks.
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post #2 of 37

The PSU is very likely the reason you can't overclock, and it's probably just due to its poor quality.  To be honest, I would replace the PSU first just because I think it's risky to be powering a nice system like yours with a low-quality unit like that.  I wouldn't even recommend that PSU to an enemy.  I doubt that it can even qualify as a 500W unit.

 

All that's needed to power your system with two 7850s is a quality-made 450W power supply:

 

http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages/amd_radeon_hd_7850_and_7870_review,7.html

 

With one 7850 under full load, their PSU pulled 256W from the wall outlet.  The 7850 pulled 106W by itself, so I have to add 106W to 256W for Crossfire, which makes the PSU pulling 362W from the wall outlet.  The CPU was idling, so I have to add about 150W for the CPU, and so now the PSU would be pulling 512W from the wall outlet.  Although, this is not cutting it close for a 550W power supply because if the PSU is 85% efficient while pulling 512W from the wall outlet, then the system is only pulling 435W from the PSU.  Of course, your power draw while gaming will be closer to about 325-350W.

 

Now, I wouldn't say that this means that you can use the 680W Apevia unit because again, I think it's not safe to use it for a nice system like yours.

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post #3 of 37
OP your psu is not a high quality unit like a seasonic or antec or rosewill capstone . but the wattage and the amps on +12v rail seem quite good. with 22A and 24A on +12v rails it should be ok.

ATX-AS680W-BL

http://www.apevia.com/productsInfo.asp?KEY=ATX-AS680W-BL

but if you want to play safe get a rosewill capstone 550W 80 PLUS GOLD psu. very high quality psu with 45a on +12v rail. that more than enough for a single HD 7950 and FX 8350 based pc even with voltage overclocking.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817182068

at the same clocks the HD 7950 is 5% slower than HD 7970. HD 7950 at 1100 mhz matches HD 7970 Ghz. HD 7850 at 1.15 ghz matches HD 7870. HD 7950 is close to 50% faster than HD 7850 at same clocks.

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/HIS/HD_7950_X2_Boost/31.html

BF3 1920 x 1200

HD 7870 - 53.8
HD 7950 iceq x2 boost - 67.5
HD 7970 Ghz - 78.9
HD 7950 iceq x2 boost(1210 mhz) - 82.9

grab this sapphire hd 7950 boost at USD 290. 270 after mail in rebate. good cooler. unlocked voltage. 29 cm long. so make sure you can fit this card in your case.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814202006
Edited by raghu78 - 3/1/13 at 7:17am
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post #4 of 37

Wow:

 

http://www.apevia.com/productsInfo.asp?KEY=ATX-AS680W-BL

 

APEVIA680W.png

 

It looks to me like they're trying to say that the +12V has a capacity of only 330W.  I mean, let's look at it very carefully:

 

When you combine the +5V and +3.3V, you get 330W.  Fair enough.

 

When you combine the +12V, +5V, and +3.3V (that is, when you add in the +12V), you get 660W.  That's an additional 330W, and the only difference is now we have the +12V in the mix.

 

If this PSU's +12V capacity really is 330W, then it's just a low-quality 350W power supply at best.

 

When I see specification charts like this, all I see is evidence of a very low quality PSU that should be avoided at all costs - especially for modern-day systems.

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post #5 of 37
my guess is the unit will have no problems supplying the normal current of 16A and 18A (34A combined). the manufacturer has avoided giving a power rating for both +12v rails combined. OP while going for a high end graphics card you need a high quality psu for safety and stability. the rosewill capstone 550w at 45a on +12v rails is fantastic. very high quality with 80 PLUS GOLD rating.
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post #6 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by raghu78 View Post

my guess is the unit will have no problems supplying the normal current of 16A and 18A (34A combined). the manufacturer has avoided giving a power rating for both +12v rails combined. OP while going for a high end graphics card you need a high quality psu for safety and stability. the rosewill capstone 550w at 45a on +12v rails is fantastic. very high quality with 80 PLUS GOLD rating.

 

Rails are not combined like that though.  So, it doesn't have a +12V capacity of 34A (and not 46A either).

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post #7 of 37
Thread Starter 
Well the problem here is that if I do decide to upgrade the power supply, I'll have significantly less for the graphics card in which case I'll only be able to buy another HD 7850 for crossfire.
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post #8 of 37

You can ask in the Power Supplies forum, but I think that this PSU is not safe to use at all - not for a nice system like yours.

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post #9 of 37
Thread Starter 
I believe you. I like the idea of upgrading mine, but I'm really just asking if crossfiring two HD 7850s is worth it ?

Cause then I will by a nice thermaltake and another HD 7850.
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post #10 of 37
OP your current psu seems to be enough.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817148022

read the newegg user reviews. a user with a FX6100 and GTX 570 is using this psu. email them and ask them what is the max amps on +12v rail combined. if it can do 40A combined then you are safe. you should be able to power a FX-8350 and HD 7950.

http://www.apevia.com/contactus.asp#TS

you can ask in the power supplies forum too
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