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Graphics 2Gb or 4Gb 670's?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Sneblot, 6 Aug 2012.

  1. Sneblot

    Sneblot Member

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    I am currently researching my next build and would like to keep it as low cost as possible, though I don't want to skimp on spec as I will need this rig for gaming, Solidworks, 3D rendering, folding and the like. Currently I have priced up a build which includes 2 x EVGA 4Gb 670's which comes in at around £2473.81. How ever if I was to opt for 2 x EVGA 2Gb 670's it comes in at £2327.17. So what I would like to know is basically is the extra 2Gb on the cards worth the £146.64, I have a feeling it might be but I can;t seem to find any hard evidence to back this up. (Reviews and the like) Any help would be most appreciated.
     
  2. davefelcher

    davefelcher New Member

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    Custom PC did a comparison and it wasn't worth getting the 4GB.
     
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  3. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

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    What's your screen resolution? and do you play games?
     
  4. Elton

    Elton Officially a Whisky Nerd

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    Depending on the screen resolution.

    Also do you need 2 of them?
     
  5. Deders

    Deders Well-Known Member

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    4GB might come in useful for 3 screens eventually but apart from that 2GB is more than enough these days.
     
  6. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    ...or if you game at 2560x1600.

    Look for the threads true_gamer started on this subject. It's very easy to use more than 2GB with certain games at 2560x1600.


    If you have a normal 1080p or 1920x1200 screen, then yes, 2GB is enough. If you use three screens or a 1600P screen I'd seriously consider 4GB.


    As for SLI 670... again, depends on res. At 1600P some games are dipping right down to 40fps or less on one card.
     
  7. Deders

    Deders Well-Known Member

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    could be a good point, not been on the forum for a while, can you link me the thread?

    Also to the OP, what motherboard are you basing the system around?
     
  8. davefelcher

    davefelcher New Member

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    Pretty sure the Custom PC article covered 2560x1600 and 5760x1080 resolutions; the writer still concluded that the 4GB was a waste of money as there was pretty much no performance difference.

    Maybe Kepler is designed with 2GB in mind and increasing performance isn't as simple as strapping more GBs to the PCB.
     
  9. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    http://forums.bit-tech.net/showthread.php?t=227936&highlight=2gb+vram


    I have no idea why people who should know better are suggesting that running out of VRAM will have no effect on gaming when it obviously will. In the above thread you can see that some games at 2560x1600 will easily exceed 2GB. When that happens, you simply MUST get stuttering while data is shifted around.

    It's not about increasing performance. Benchmarks between a 2GB card and a 4GB card will show no difference whatsoever so long as both cards have available VRAM to use. Having more VRAM is to stop decreasing that performance when a game demands more than 2GB - which some patently do at higher resolutions.
     
  10. BennieboyUK

    BennieboyUK CPC Folder of the Month Sep 2011

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    I have to say I am with Pookeyhead on this one. I think that buying a card with 2gb that is already pushing the limits in some games at release is a poor investment. If you are looking to keep the card for longer than 6-9 months then I personally think that the upfront cost of the 4gb will give you a better ROI in the next 18-24 months - also it will depreciate in value a lot slow than the 2gb versions.

    Take my 3gb 580's, people are "throwing" away their 1.5gb 580's due to the limits on the VRAM, where as mine will last until the next release major release. I know Kelper has better vram managment, but I think the point still stands.
     
  11. rollo

    rollo Well-Known Member

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    Problem is no reviews use a high Rez crysis 2 with every graphic pack which is what it takes.

    They just test bf3 where the 2 670s 2gb and 4gb were the same at every Rez hence the reason it's a waste of cash.

    And nobody can accurately say what happens if you run out of vram as in most cases the graphics cards grunt is reason for its performance drop more than a lack of vram.

    True gamer basically had 0 fps dif as the cards never ran out of VRAM the 2gb cards stopped at 1.95gb the 4gb never broke 3gb. Which begs the question of if you can ever run out of VRAM.

    Personally I got 2gb cards as pc graphics are unlikely to be pushed before the next gen consoles are out and by that time I and everybody else on this forum will have upgraded again.
     
  12. davefelcher

    davefelcher New Member

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    Interesting stuff.
    Does anyone know how 2GB cards perform in SLI? As far as I know the memory isn't pooled but with 2 cards sharing the work load does each card need as much memory as a single card doing the same work?
     
  13. Harlequin

    Harlequin Well-Known Member

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  14. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    [​IMG]

    They're clearly running out of VRAM, and the benchmarks clearly show that in practice. All Hex said was they couldn't "feel" it. Fact is though, if you're running 3 screens or a massive single monitor, you want as much headroom as you can get.

    What do you think happens when a card runs out of VRAM?
     
  15. Harlequin

    Harlequin Well-Known Member

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    so when hexus can`t see any difference , even with the max vram useage goes over the card limit, in 1 game at 1 settings (when it would then pcie texture store) , my answer is the same

    NOTHING.

    edit: Hexus arnt the only site either - you simply dont need more than 2GB even triple headed - even monsters like BF3 dont go over 2GB card vram useage at max
     
  16. Shirty

    Shirty W*nker! Super Moderator

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    I'm no expert here, but couldn't games/drivers be coded so that when a card reaches the limit of its VRAM the game/driver intelligently lowers part of the image quality to keep the framerate smooth?

    It just seems logical. Won't ever be a problem for me, my 1.5GB VRAM will do me at 1080p for some time to come I'd imagine :D
     
  17. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    But that's like saying that because you can't "see" a difference between card A) averaging 60fps and card B) averaging 80fps, I should therefore buy card A because it's cheaper. In reality, no one would do that. If you could afford card B, you'd want card B simply because while you can't SEE the difference, it is real, and it's there, and in a year or two when things push your hardware harder, card B will end up being a better investment.

    Hexus have shown that certain games (and old ones at that) can exceed the 670's 2GB VRAM limit with 3 screens, so given that the OP obviously isn't searching down the back of the sofa for small change, it would be stupid to get the 2GB versions.
     
  18. N17 dizzi

    N17 dizzi Well-Known Member

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    Bandwidth comes into it IMO. The speed in which data inside the buffer changes would not cause the framerate to dip, unless you don't have the bandwidth to allow rapid swapping.

    Anyone running 1440p or more with SLI/XF on PCIe 2.0 would be advised to have a higher VRAM model if possible.

    3.0 bandwidth improves things massively, albeit in that niche circumstance

    Nothing concrete to back that up, just going by my own testing with 2GB 680s and 4GB 670s on my sig rig, changing the lane bandwidth manually ala vega's video with 4way SLI 680s.
     
  19. Harlequin

    Harlequin Well-Known Member

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    pcie bandwidth for pcie texturing comes into play - look at the speed of your system ram and the `pipe` leading to the gfx card ; imo you can go up to 500mb or so above your vram and still not notice slow downs , if you have fast system ram.

    hexus has shown 1 game (crysis 2) can exceed 2GB useage in certain select situations, but they themselves have said they didnt feel the extra ram helped.

    http://hexus.net/tech/reviews/graphics/42577-sapphires-monster-hd-7970-toxic-6gb-three-screens/

    another triple head review with the `cheap` sapphire 7970 toxic
     
  20. Baz

    Baz I work for Corsair

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    GTX 670 and 680 4GB utterly pointless. Do Not Buy.

    No tangible or measurable frame rate difference at 2560 or 5760. Totally redundant extra, and not worth the cash at all.
     
    Last edited: 7 Aug 2012

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