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Old 27th Feb 2013, 09:48   #1
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Would you buy a 680 or a 7970?

I'm in the market for a new card now, and since we aren't going to see anything life changing for some time now, I've settled on picking up a top single GPU to keep me going for the foreseeable.

Right now, the cheapest 680 on Scan is 360, whereas the vanilla 7970s start at 296. The cheapest GHz edition is still well under the price of the 680 (I wouldn't bother with a GHz edition anyway as the original can be clocked just as high). SLI/Xfire might happen in a year or so if and when it's needed.

So why the hell would I buy a new 680 right now? All the benchies I've seen across the net point to the 7970 being pretty much on a par or exceeding it performance wise. The only real benefit is power consumption.

Which have you got/would you get and why? If you can recommend a particular card as well then all the better.

I might just end up getting another 670 on a 680 PCB and overclock it to 680 speeds anyway, I loved that card so much.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 10:12   #2
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680, as in my experience AMD's drivers are terrible (Catalyst Control Centre, ugh). I also appreciate lower temps, less noise and lower power use.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 10:15   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirty View Post
I might just end up getting another 670 on a 680 PCB and overclock it to 680 speeds anyway, I loved that card so much.
Why'd you get rid of it?
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 10:16   #4
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There was so little between a 680 and 670 I said I would just go with a 670 (I went with overclocked evga f.t.w). Also if you look at tech reports within the second analysis, it seems the quality of a card isn't just the raw frames per second it can pump out. The intervals at which it can put those frames out is important as well.

Without having access to similar level cards from both amd and nvidia I can't see for myself how this within the second stuff compares or applies to real life unfortunately.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 10:17   #5
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I'd probably go for a 4Gb GTX670 if I were in your shoes.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 10:18   #6
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680 reasons above.

7970 stock cooler sounds like an aircraft engine if you apply the ghz clock settings to it.

If your going to watercool the 7970 becomes a better idea but its still heavy on power which only gets worse overclocking.

AMD became alot like the old nvidia 400 series brute force for performance. 480 to this day is still super quick but its hugely power hungry and ear bashing on the stock cooler. 7970 is a modern replica.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 10:52   #7
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If you have concerns about the noise, get a aftermarket 7970, then OC it to Ghz speeds, and use the money you've saved on something else - another 8GB of XMS3 maybe?

Honestly, price performance wise AMD are doing great right now. I use a 7850 in my LAN rig and I've never had a single problem with their drivers. Rollo above is banging on about power use, but there is only 30W in it which won't make a single shred of difference to your powerbill, or anything else I can think of- oh and its nothing like the 480.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 11:14   #8
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If you pay your own electric bill it makes a difference.

Ive seen heavy savings myself from sli 580s ( Around 750 - 800 watts from the wall) to sli 680s ( 450 - 500 watts from the wall give or take games). Sli 580s use similar power to cf 7970s for reference.

My own bill has dropped 20 a month. (got them around release last year would guess ive saved between 150-200 on electric since then) If it continues at that rate ive saved nearly the cost of the cards to begin with after i sold my orginal 580s. free upgrades are always good.

He did mension he was considering SLI CF later.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 11:27   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cei View Post
680, as in my experience AMD's drivers are terrible (Catalyst Control Centre, ugh). I also appreciate lower temps, less noise and lower power use.
I'm more of a plug and play user, so the intricacies of the driver suite will barely be touched.

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Why'd you get rid of it?
Tyres were needed urgently and I don't do payday loans

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Originally Posted by theshadow2001 View Post
There was so little between a 680 and 670 I said I would just go with a 670 (I went with overclocked evga f.t.w). Also if you look at tech reports within the second analysis, it seems the quality of a card isn't just the raw frames per second it can pump out. The intervals at which it can put those frames out is important as well.

Without having access to similar level cards from both amd and nvidia I can't see for myself how this within the second stuff compares or applies to real life unfortunately.
I had a 670 f.t.w. as well, a cracker.

Quote:
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I'd probably go for a 4Gb GTX670 if I were in your shoes.
Will that extra 2Gb frame buffer do much for me at 1080p? The general consensus seems to be that it won't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rollo View Post
680 reasons above.

7970 stock cooler sounds like an aircraft engine if you apply the ghz clock settings to it.

If your going to watercool the 7970 becomes a better idea but its still heavy on power which only gets worse overclocking.

AMD became alot like the old nvidia 400 series brute force for performance. 480 to this day is still super quick but its hugely power hungry and ear bashing on the stock cooler. 7970 is a modern replica.
I'd avoid the stock cooler, and from what I've seen some of the aftermarket coolers are substantially quieter than the stock nv coolers on the 670 and 680.

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If you have concerns about the noise, get a aftermarket 7970, then OC it to Ghz speeds, and use the money you've saved on something else - another 8GB of XMS3 maybe?

Honestly, price performance wise AMD are doing great right now. I use a 7850 in my LAN rig and I've never had a single problem with their drivers. Rollo above is banging on about power use, but there is only 30W in it which won't make a single shred of difference to your powerbill, or anything else I can think of- oh and its nothing like the 480.
I agree, I don't game enough for marginal differences in power consumption to make a noticeable difference.

Quote:
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If you pay your own electric bill it makes a difference. Maybe 10 hours a week?

Ive seen heavy savings myself from sli 580s ( Around 750 - 800 watts from the wall) to sli 680s ( 450 - 500 watts from the wall give or take games). Sli 580s use similar power to cf 7970s for reference.

My own bill has dropped 20 a month. (got them around release last year would guess ive saved between 150-200 on electric since then) If it continues at that rate ive saved nearly the cost of the cards to begin with after i sold my orginal 580s. free upgrades are always good.

He did mension he was considering SLI CF later.
Ah, but the peak power draw of a stock 7970 is only around 30w higher than a 680. So even in CF the difference would be the equivalent of switching on a 60w bulb for the duration of gaming. Maybe 60-70 a year for my usage, half that in single card mode.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 11:46   #10
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For 1920x1080 I would go with a 2GB GTX680 - that's exactly what I run and I've not found a game that really needs the 2GB of RAM (let alone more). Crysis 3 run on nvidia's "Optimum Setting" maxes out at about 1.8GB so far. A lot of people say that 670s overclock to 680 level, but a 680 overclocks further. I can't stand AMD for the drivers (Catalyst Control Center is awful imo) but nvidia's drivers just work...

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Old 27th Feb 2013, 11:46   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollo View Post
If you pay your own electric bill it makes a difference.
I pay my own bill, but thanks.

Quote:
Ive seen heavy savings myself from sli 580s ( Around 750 - 800 watts from the wall) to sli 680s ( 450 - 500 watts from the wall give or take games). Sli 580s use similar power to cf 7970s for reference.
Firstly 7970s idle far lower than dual 680s, so any time you aren't gaming, you are using less power than the 680s. I personally spend a lot of the time my computer is on surfing the net, or watching films, so this is a pretty useful feature.

SLI 680s do not pull 450 watts from the wall in games. Add another 75w or so and you'd be closer.

Finally, 7970s pull another 100W or so on top of that (they are costing you an extra 1p per hour of gaming)


Quote:
My own bill has dropped 20 a month. (got them around release last year would guess ive saved between 150-200 on electric since then) If it continues at that rate ive saved nearly the cost of the cards to begin with after i sold my orginal 580s. free upgrades are always good.
There is about 30W in it. 1KWH = around 10p - therefore 30w = 0.03p. If he plays games at max load for 10 hours a week his maximum saving will be 1.20 a month. Kerching! By your reasoning he should get his free upgrade in 250 months (about 2032)
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 11:59   #12
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Guess we just have high elec bills were I live as savings have been large and comp is on 24/7 was at 80 ish a month now at 55 to 60 nothing else has changed that ive noticed at least.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 12:05   #13
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That's the big difference, my PC is on maybe 15 hours a week, and only used for gaming maybe 10. Hell, I'm playing Trine 2 at the minute which probably isn't too taxing either!

You know, I'm actually wondering whether a 7950 might not be a better bet at my res - the new prices are insanely low with Crysis 3 and the new Bioshock (two games I will be playing regardless), with the money saved I could buy something quite nice.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 12:12   #14
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At 1080p its the price performance king the 7950 is. More so if you intend to play the 2 games it comes with as your effectively wiping 60 of the price of that card straight away.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 12:56   #15
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You know, I'm actually wondering whether a 7950 might not be a better bet at my res - the new prices are insanely low with Crysis 3 and the new Bioshock (two games I will be playing regardless), with the money saved I could buy something quite nice.
I think you've talked yourself into it. You don't need a 680 or 7970 at 1080p - buy a swanky 7950 boost card with free games. I'd push you towards a 670ftw but the 670 prices need to drop - they have the performance, but are losing ground on the value.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 13:08   #16
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Theres a reason I parted with my 2 HD7970 so quickly. More to do witb multiple cards though.

As Mankz has said - Get a GTX 670 4GB csrd. Perferrally the F.T.W+ card that I have purchased.

Games like Crysis 3, Farcry 3, Hitman etc will use more tha 2GB VRAM when msxed out at 1080p.
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 13:13   #17
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4gb 670 and 680 are a waste of money in general, moreso at your screen res

best thing at your res is the 7950 boost since AMD's combo games are so awesome right now

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Old 27th Feb 2013, 13:16   #18
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Yeah if the 670s could drop down even just 25 they would be there on the value front, but two AAA games and quite a lot of change to buy some other bits seems preferable to what a 670 will ultimately give me - another 10fps when they are already plenty high enough...
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Old 27th Feb 2013, 13:41   #19
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Games like Crysis 3, Farcry 3, Hitman etc will use more tha 2GB VRAM when msxed out at 1080p.
I've been doing a comparison of Crysis vs. Crysis 3, and found VRAM to be by far the limiting factor. I had been using a 2Gb GTX670 (before it fried itself).. If I were getting a new GPU to last a year or two, I'd definately stump up the extra for added RAM these days.

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Old 27th Feb 2013, 13:47   #20
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I have the direct cuii 7970 and the 680 -version arrived today will come back to you.
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