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Graphics 2Gb or 4Gb 670's?

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

  1. Deders

    Deders Modder

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    Was actually going to mention this but got distracted, but this seems to be the behaviour as far as I can measure it.
     
  2. N17 dizzi

    N17 dizzi Multimodder

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    It would be good to get some conclusive testing done to put this subject to bed.

    I noticed a difference when running the 2GB 680s on crysis 2 extreme settings when they ran out of vram on 2.0 8 lanes. GPU usage went to max. Frame rate fluctuated, though certainly not unplayable, it was lower. Switching to pcie 3 improved things.

    I didn't record my findings so you could question it to death. I was rushing to decide if I should swap them for my current cards, which I'm glad I did.
     
  3. sandys

    sandys Multimodder

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  4. Baz

    Baz I work for Corsair

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    Tested single card GTX 680 2GB and 4GB in CPC at 1920, 2560 and 5760 on PCI-E 2.0 16x. Do you really need to test anything else?

    No difference, at all, in any of our benchmarks. Argue the toss all you want, 4GB cards are a waste of money.

    SLI round-up? We're re-jigging the graphics benchmarks and building a SLI and Cross-Fire friendly test rig very soon, but even then, I don't think any a manufacturer would be brave enough to send us two 4GB GTX 680s just so we can go "lol, it's pointless!"
     
  5. Shirty

    Shirty W*nker! Super Moderator

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    Harry, in all seriousness whilst the current crop of games are all essentially designed to max out at 1.9GB whatever the weather, do you not think that going forward as more 4-6GB cards come to market that developers will start to venture further?

    Or is there some technical limitation? Because if I'd just splurged on 4GB cards (pigs will fly over frozen hell first) I'd be wanting to justify the extra expense as much as these guys. So can you answer in you capacity as a respected hardware journalist and say whether you think there might be at least an element of future-proofing built into these cards?
     
  6. Deders

    Deders Modder

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    Max Payne 3 did go against the trend of Consolified games by saying it would make use of whatever resources you have, so you'd get less objects popping in and out with more video memory. Also Rage could be tweaked to make use of more than 3GB to get the highest res textures. Generally most games will be designed to make good use of mainstream hardware configurations but there are always a few exceptions.

    Also the great thing about PC's are the Moddable games, Texture packs are renowned for needing more video memory than most users have from that generation of cards.

    Also like I think I've mentioned before, on Intel Chipsets that limit PCIe bandwidth to 8x if you have anything plugged in to the 2nd PCIe slot (could be an SSD card) then having the extra memory makes a difference. One forum member got much better performance out of BF3 just by removing his 2nd graphics card so the first one could make full use of the 16x bandwidth.

    Would be interested to see if anyone has a good argument against the results that Sandys linked to above
     
  7. Baz

    Baz I work for Corsair

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    If current games needed more GDDR5, Nvidia and AMD would equip thier cards with more DRAM as standard. I asked AMD at 7970 launch, why use 3GB when 2GBis more than enough. The answer was literally, "people expect bigger numbers, so we give them bigger numbers."

    Might change next year when the nextgen gives everything a kick up the ass, but I doubt it. Not so sure re: limitations though.

    Re; future proofing though, if they don't make any difference at 5760, i dont think they'll make a difference any time soon. Devs habve to code games for backwards compatibility of years, until we've all had 4GB for 2-3 years, no one will take advantage of it.

    I can't comment on other review sites and their methods/results - only what I've observed with my own tests and rigs.
     
    Last edited: 9 Aug 2012
  8. Guest-44432

    Guest-44432 Guest

    I've tried to keep out of this for as long as possible. But now I will rattle the cages of those who believe 2GB is enough, when it is not.

    I, and many others have clearly done our own research using different Settings and Resolutions to come to a conclusion that anything above 1080P will utilise more than 2GB of VRAM. (Link have been posted by Pookeyhead thanks).

    xaser04 did a review which you can see below in the link.
    xaser04 Review

    Snipped from his review of using 2 GTX 670 2GB hitting VRAM limits.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    xaser04 reply's;
    So, as I have owned 2x GTX 680 4GB card's, I can confirm that BF3 runs flawlessly at the same settings as xaser04, due to having more VRAM.

    @ Baz - Please come back to us after you have added all the texture paks and mods on Skyrim, and then tell all of us that 2GB VRAM is enough...(Even at 1080P, Skyrim will use well over 2GB of VRAM with texture paks etc.)

    My advice;

    Gaming at 1080P - Get a GTX 670 2GB or HD7970
    Gaming at 1440P Get a GTX 670 4GB or HD7970
    Gaming at 1600p Get 2x GTX 670 4GB or 2x HD7970
    Gaming at 1080P triple monitors Get 2x GTX 670 4GB or 2x HD7970


    EDIT:

    Just to add the video of PCI-E bandwidth issues that N17 Dizzi was quoting.
     
    N17 dizzi likes this.
  9. Harlequin

    Harlequin Modder

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    so by adding `texture packs and mods` to a game you can use more ram


    woop woop

    thats not how the game is shipped , therefore isnt a valid arguement.
     
  10. bdigital

    bdigital Is re-building his PC again

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    Im not saying 4gb does or doesnt make a difference, because i dont know.

    But i am disagreeing with you saying its invalid.

    If people want to play with texture packs then it is part of their requirements when choosing a card. So its perfectly valid.

    I like to be able to turn the graphics up to 11 and that includes downloading any extras that make it look better.
     
  11. Deders

    Deders Modder

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    I agree, That's the beauty of being able to customise your PC and the games you play on it to suit your needs.
     
  12. Harlequin

    Harlequin Modder

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    thats like saying that whilst a review of arma 2 must include dayz.....

    skyrim was never shipped from the factory with any texture of mod packs by default
     
  13. law99

    law99 Custom User Title

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    Except that in one swoop it proves that it isn't pointless.

    In fact, it proves that if you need that premium, you must have the 4gb card. And from above postings, it sounds like Max Payne 3 may actually use larger memory and I heard no mention of mods.
     
  14. Deders

    Deders Modder

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    Not at all, since when was there a Default PC configuration? It's about being able to make a choice, and some of the benchmarks which include triple screen configurations prove that extra memory can make the difference between playable and not playable.

    Would also like to point out again that you only get the highest res textures in Rage if you have 3GB+ video memory

    It's up to the consumer to decide whether they think that they might need the extra Vram, if they are into mods then this will be a factor. The only way of making an informed decision before you buy is from other's experience and reviews.
     
  15. bdigital

    bdigital Is re-building his PC again

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    No its not?

    If i want a gpu to play skyrim, and i plan to add the texture packs and mods etc....then im going to look around for one that can handle it!

    I wouldnt sit there with a nappy on my head going - "Argument invalid - game must be same as shipped"

    Im not saying 4gb is better because i dont have the facts to back it up. But i am saying that you shouldnt ignore performance benchmarks using the extras IF that is what you want your GPU to do
     
  16. Harlequin

    Harlequin Modder

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    for an xboix port you suddenly `need` more vram than an xbox ship with total ram? not a chance.


    if you want to shout from your soapbox and stamp your feet that games need more vram - go get a crysis `mod` or a stalker one then... but again they didnt ship like that
     
  17. Guest-44432

    Guest-44432 Guest

    This is why you need to spend more time owning the stuff and testing it than flicking through review sites, that do not do a proper test for comparison...


    Crysis 2 is a good example. It didn't come shipped with DX11 or High res textures, due to limiting old consoles.
    Later on they patched that in, so the game still counts.

    You can't go around quoting about console ports and VRAM, as console do not render games at 1080p - they up-scale the image, which results in less VRAM needed.
    Now play that same game on the PC, and the PC will render that image at 1080P or higher, which will result in using more VRAM.
     
  18. rollo

    rollo Modder

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    fact is we dont even know what resolution this person intends to game at, if we assume its the bog standard 27inch res of 2560 x then above 2gb is correctly pointless unless he mods the games to include extras.

    simply put if your going 3 screens you will likely need 3 way sli or crossfire to get games like metro 2033 maxed out anyway at something of a playable frame rate. And in that usage case adding another £200 to cost for some extra ram is the least of your worrys.

    we also have no idea if he intends to keep the cards for more than 6-12 months. Or if hes like foke on here who upgrade every cycle of cards. ( if its the latter £200 can be saved towards the next set of cards)
     
  19. Deders

    Deders Modder

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    GTA4 might not have 'needed' over 512MB to look good, but to look it's best it wanted 1GB+, not many people had that at that point

    Some developers do like to put in higher details than current hardware can cope with, Crysis is a prime example. Also Far cry 2 wanted more than the 512MB it stated on the back of the box recommended (8600GTS) to turn everything up to full detail.

    Also Ghostbusters was supposed to run fine on an Athlon64x2 according to the back of the box, but there were certain sections that would grind to a halt unless you had a quad core, which at the time wasn't the norm.

    The sections shouldn't have been particularly demanding but due to either poor conversions or architectural differences between the consoles and PC's they weren't as optimally coded as they should have been.
     
  20. davefelcher

    davefelcher What's a Dremel?

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    I'm not sure he even mentioned gaming :)
    Edit - Ignore me, he did.
     

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