Originally Posted by Bullet1225
Great, I really like it so far, I'll be watching videos and reading up on all these new parts.. but this looks pretty good to me..
Just out of curiosity, what would you compare the 6950 (or 6970 if it's as easy to unlock as you make it sound) to for an NVIDIA card?
Another question.. what's the best way to apply thermal paste to the hyper 212 plus since it's not a flat surface, or does it come with any pre-applied?
AMD and nVidia cards will perform differently in different games, but generally and not counting overclock performance:
GTX560 < HD6950 < GTX570 (or GTX480) < HD6970 < GTX580 < HD6990
The GTX 570 is not known to be a good overclocker, whereas the 6950 certainly is. In any case, the gap between a 6950 and the GTX 570 in performance is not worth the ~5-10% difference in performance (average). The difference between a GTX570 and a 6970 is also not very high.
The best bang for the buck is absolutely the 6950 when you consider that they often unlock to 6970, but even if not, they are able to overclock to levels that rival the 6970 at stock.
You should get a 6950, try and unlock it and plan on crossfiring them at some stage. If it unlocks successfully, you can crossfire it with a 6970 down the line too.
As far as thermal paste on the Hyper212+, best to google and youtube. There's a number of different methods. The golden rule is to have some, but as little as possible between the heatsink and the CPU. I usually spread mine out onto the CPU surface and then swivel the heatsink base into position with some slight pressure. You'll feel it "grab". If there are noticable gaps between the heatpipes on the base, some say it's wise to fill the gaps. Personally I've seen no difference either way, and logically its only the point of contact that is relevant to heat dissipation. It may come with some pre-installed. You should scrape this off, polish with Isopropyl Alcohol (highest percentage you can get, at least 90%) and reapply your own. The included stuff is usually crap.