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Graphics nVidia or ATi? Pros/Cons for/against ATI please!

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Ravenheart, 24 Nov 2010.

  1. Deders

    Deders Modder

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    A 5970 is really for large monitors, somewhere above 1920x1080.

    It's been mentioned before but a 5970 is 2 5870's slightly underclocked and put in crossfire mode all in the same card. you probably wouldn't notice much difference at 1680x1050 between that and a single 5870.

    The thing I've noticed when running SLI (not sure if the case is the same for crossfire but I believe they use similar techniques) is that I get the most noticable difference in a game when resolution is a factor. For instance if a game runs smooth at 1440x720 but not at 1680x1050 then adding a second card in SLI will give me the extra grunt I need to run it smoothly at 1680.
    But if it already runs smoothly at 1680 then I don't notice much difference with the second card, especially with vsync enabled.

    I'd say if the 5970 is nearly as cheap as a 5870 then go for it by all means but if not then i'd wait for the card above the 6870 to come out sometime early next year as it will provide the same grunt with better tesselation performance than the 5xxx series. Even the 6870 would be enough for your resolution and if your PSU can handle it you could keep your 275 for Physx.
     
  2. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    Hey there.

    Allow a non-fanboi to give his (factually based) opinion.

    Nvidia:
    Most of the time their drivers are better than ATI. But every few months or so they will screw up. Bad.
    The most recent screw up was physically destroying nvidia cards due to a fanspeed bug.

    The biggest screw up they ever did, however, was the NV4Disp.dll BSOD plague. For years, and even sometimes to this day, nvidia users on vista or later would get random BSOD's for no reason at all in random games. Do a google search for nv4disp and see what I mean.

    Some driver problems were quite bad - I had a 9800GX2 when it first came out to play Age of Conan. Whenever a necro would come on screen, my PC would hard reboot, no BSOD or nothing.
    Turns out it was a shader bug, and needed a driver update. I bought an ATI card afterwards anyway (HD4870X2) and it was much more 'stable' in regards to weird game bugs.

    Nvidia's stream/cuda/physx is superior. It works really well and does a great job. For GPGPU you cant beat it.
    If you arent doing GPGPU, its just another buzzword and wont benefit you at all.

    Single GPU performance for nvidia is superior ever since the X1950XTX was taken over by nvidia.

    Higher end nvidia cards have terrible performance per watt/efficiency until you get to the gtx 580.

    ATI:
    Historically have had more driver problems more often, but less severe. In the last year or so, there has been no memorable issues and ATI are doing much better - even better than nvidia at this current point in time

    Generally better AA/AF quality than nvidia. The gtx 580 has new AA/AF algorithms though that bring it on par, if not better than ati cards.

    Efficiency/performance per watt is really high across the range. Very very good.

    Every driver update by ATI adds significant performance gains in most games (3-5%, sometimes more), so over the course of having a card for a year, you generally get an increase in performance of about 25%.

    Further to the above, runs cooler, obviously.

    From all the rumors flying around, the 6970 is going to spank the gtx 580 pretty hard, and will become the fastest single gpu card around - might be worth waiting for the next card down from that, the HD6950. Should be the new bang for buck king.


    Both Companies:
    Both companies refuse to acknowledge microstutter, which is a real problem. I cant stand it myself. Dont go for crossfire or SLI unless your monitor is gigantic. Yours isnt, so stay with single GPU.

    Crossfire and SLI both scale really well for the most part. Some games they both fail really bad too.


    Conclusion:
    Being a fanboi is stupid. Both cards have good and bad sides. Nvidia, more bad lately (fermi was a bit of a joke) but the GTX 580 redeemed them really good, and they came up with an excellent card.

    Next month we will be at a point where nvidia and ati both have equally powerful single GPU cards that are just as good as eachother, and you need to pick what you prefer.

    Choose based on performance numbers for the games that you play and performance numbers in the game engines of the games you will play.

    One is as good as the other, but wait till the HD69xx series drops first.

    -Ash
     
  3. padrejones2001

    padrejones2001 Puppy Love

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but from benchmarks over the years, ATi products generally fare better at much higher resolutions (2560x1600, for example) than the nVidia counterparts. That's where the ATi products really shine, in my opinion. May also explain my they do so well in multi-monitor setups as well.
     
  4. Ravenheart

    Ravenheart What's a Dremel?

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    It's not about me investing in an 120hz monitor and 3D Glasses, it's about me (potentially) grabbing a fantastic deal on an ATI 5970 which would mean I'd be parting with less cash for a ATI 5970 than I would if I were to buy this PALIT GTX470 1280MB GDDR5 Dual DVI Mini HDMI Out PCI-E Graphics Card

    Which obviously would mean I'd got a bargain right! Granted I'd be trading in my own GTX 275 as part of the deal (if no one else buys the card I'm after in the meantime) but I'd still be parting with less hard cash than I would if I were to buy one of those GTX 470's I linked to that are brand new.

    I'm not loaded by any means but while price isn't a massive issue, it is coming upto christmas and I can't justify right now spending A LOT more money than I'm willing to (including trading in my current card) and that max limit right now including trading in my card is £240 + my card but I won't even have that sort of money till the 8th of December.

    The one I'm after in cash terms isn't cheaper than a 5870 by a long shot but I'd be parting with less money than I would be for a 5870.

    Oh and for all the people saying on ATI cards 3D Gaming is crap, can someone answer this (even though I'm pretty sure I know the answer) a 5970 ATI card easily performs better in 3D Gaming than a NVIDIA GTX 275 surely! lol
     
  5. ashtefere

    ashtefere What's a Dremel?

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    I would stay away from 3d gaming entirely. Its tried to resurrect itself many times in the past.
    10 years ago the geforce 2 was boasting "stereoscopic 3d gaming!".

    Im not sure exactly with AMD's 3d system, but I know nvidia has more experience in that regard.

    You have to ask yourself basically, "how many games do I own that are 3d" and "will I play them very often in 3d?"

    -Ash
     
  6. thehippoz

    thehippoz What's a Dremel?

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    ash has a good view of it.. even today with nvidia there's a issue with the driver where it won't kick in the desktop colors set in the cp at logon, win 7 64.. it's been like this through 3 drivers even the latest one =E had to write a vb script to auto set it in the cp at launch

    the nvdddddwhatever.dll where the driver stops responding and restarts was pretty common early on in vista.. there was work (reach)arounds but nvidia drivers are no where near perfect

    the thing that held back ati was the 8800gts and gtx (g80).. that monster was so far ahead of it's time- think most of us who knew our head from the back of our ass were ati users before that.. they just had better cards

    well the geforce 4ti wasn't bad.. still had image quality beat by ati though.. I don't like sli and crossfire either- it's a gimmick really.. what they do is make games so they are slightly more intense than what a midline gpu can handle full up.. so they get the hoards of snuffas buying 2 cards

    2 sales is better than 1

    the scaling of ati's newest cards is really interesting though.. almost double- so having more than one gpu might make sense soon.. I mean I always thought sli/crossfire was the biggest joke ever played but so many people bought into it- guess it finally paid off in spades if they can keep the scaling doubled up

    but anyways you know both companies are in cahoots to look like they are in competition.. the reality is they are all butt buddies- I see no reason for ati to let the 580 out without a counter given the time they've had.. but I do see a deal between the two- "I rub it then you do it"

    the illusion is good enough to keep the monopoly laws in check :blush:
     
  7. Ljs

    Ljs Modder

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    I see it as an longevity thing. Buy a card, and then in a few years time when it starts having trouble buy another cheap card and drop it in.
     
  8. Ravenheart

    Ravenheart What's a Dremel?

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    What is everyone talking about?? I didn't ask/or say I was going to be playing '3D' gaming! I was talking about '3D Gaming' as in NOT the 3D Glasses type lol.

    I've no idea who thought I was on about the whole 3D Glasses thing but as far as I'm aware I never gave that impression, I simply want to know (think I already know) that the 5970 will be a marked improvement on my GTX 275 for '3D Gaming' as in not 2D graphics lol, NOT the 3D Glasses type of 3D Gaming either :D

    When I was talking about 3D Gaming (just to clarify) I was on about the whole 3D Gaming that's been around for years, as in the opposite to old side scrolling games but the full on can explore, turn 180 degrees etc type of 3D, I'm not interested in the type of 3D Gaming with special glasses, super 120hz monitors etc, i just want a NEWER card that I can play games with that's it lol :)
     
  9. sp4nky

    sp4nky BF3: Aardfrith WoT: McGubbins

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    If you're talking about gaming at 1680x1050, there seems little point waiting for the 6900 series cards to come out - the 6870 is perfectly fine for gaming at this resolution or even 1920x1200. All the benchmarks I've seen (and done - I have a 6870 myself) give it excellent frame-rates in current games.
     
  10. Pete J

    Pete J Employed scum

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    I'd agree with this. An example is the 19x.xx drivers I believe - not only did they have the fanspeed bug, they were terrible for performance!
    25%?! Really? That's a pretty goddamn huge difference! I'm not saying you're right or wrong but personally I think it's a bit rubbish that ATI take this long to sort it out. From what I've seen, Nvidia usually improve things about 5-10% within a couple of months and then it stays stable (apart from the odd hiccup you mention).
    I hear the opposite: the 580 has ATI worried in that the 6970 will be barely able to keep up and could well be ATI's 'Thermi' moment - that is, high power consumption and heat (well, ignoring the 2xxx/3xxx series). I do agree though, waiting for the 69xx cards is a sensible move.

    Just to throw a spanner in the works, I'd say completely the opposite :) . Truth be told, it's more down to the amount of GPU RAM available.
     
  11. Guest-44432

    Guest-44432 Guest

    HD5970 will be overkill for 1680x1050.

    I have owned many cards from ATI and Nvidia.

    HD2900XT CF
    8800GTX SLI
    HD3870X2 CFX
    9800GTX
    9800GX2
    GTX 280
    HD4970 CF
    HD5870 CF
    HD5970
    9800GT

    From my experiences from both sides over the years, I have only had 1 issue with ATI drivers 10.6 which used to crash Borderlands after 30mins of game play.

    Most people who slag off drivers from both sides don't fully uninstall all of the previous drivers before installing the new one. This can cause driver conflict, which can give you low FPS and driver crashes.
    Another reason is people don't keep there PC clean and do regularly defrag. So there PC are full of S**t that stops them running at there optimal performance.
    Another reason is people have too many programs running, especially in the background. Which again can cause low FPS and driver crashes.

    Ideally I would stick to a single card for running games at 1680x1050. The HD6870 would best suit your gaming needs at this moment of time, unless you plan to run a higher res monitor.

    Cheers,

    Simon.
     
  12. wyx087

    wyx087 Homeworld 3 is happening!!

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    as a user of 8800GTX, GTX260 and 5870. i can tell you that nVidia are brilliant, whereas ATI just doesn't do the job.

    you'd think 5870 will be great, when moving from gtx 260 to 5870, i did not change my monitor, stayed at 24inch. but although average FPS gone up, it didn't felt as smooth as gtx 260. driver also felt less polished than nVidia due to the lack of per-game configuration.

    i don't know anything about multi-GPU cards or configurations. but i disagree with ash's comments about nVidia drivers and ATI driver's performance increases (there are none)
     
  13. Marine-RX179

    Marine-RX179 What's a Dremel?

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    Some people's opinion offered is extremely biased. One or two people keep go holding that one time which which Nvidia unfortunately released a bugged driver which messed up the fanspeed control, and even that driver was pulled in less than half a day; yet they won't comment on how ATI drivers tends to fix one thing and break another, particularly on crossfire? Why do you think so many ATI owners still uses catalyst 10.4, or revert back to it after installing newer drivers?

    I've seen people with 5970 and Crossfire 5850 being very frustrated because their cards ain't performing as they should, and rather than getting help in solving their problems, ATI fanboys insisting there is "absolutely nothing wrong" with ATI's driver support (for crossfire), so in a way they are implying it is their "incompentence" that they couldn't get the Crossfire to work properly...can you imagine that?

    Some of those people end up selling their 5970/Crossfire 5850 and went for a GTX480 in the end and overclock it, and they were much happier with the GTX480 and it deliver the performance they needed, and not need to fight with crossfire issue all the time.

    Yes ATI drivers are usually spot-on for the single GPU card, but I would think twice before getting a dual-GPU card or a Crossfire set up.
     
  14. memeroot

    memeroot aged and experianced

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    @Ph4ZeD
    returning to the scaling - I had a look at the Hexus article you said
    "Please stop talking crap. Linked article clearly demonstrates how 6850 scaling is superior to 460 scaling."

    the conclusion in the article states
    "Bottom line: AMD has improved its CrossFireX scaling to match NVIDIA's."

    you say superior they say matched.... bias much?

    Regardless - I would suggest that you consider a 2nd hand gtx480 and overclock it - it should get close to the ATI performance without the driver issues etc... you can also keep your old card for physx or sell it.

    230 is about the price of a 480 these days.
     
  15. heir flick

    heir flick Minimodder

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    as a converted nvidia fanboy my choice is now ati, never had a problem with drivers and for me i prefer the image qualiity of ati over nvidia, im sure some will say different but hey you pays your money and takes your choice
     
  16. Marine-RX179

    Marine-RX179 What's a Dremel?

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    I've seen that review quite a long while ago, and only reason why the xfire 6850 deliver higher frame rate than the SLI 460 in those few game tested was because they were done on a low AA setting; it is pretty much common knowledge that AMD/ATI cards would perform better at no or low AA.

    I think it would fair to say this:
    i) At 0xAA and 2xAA, 6850 would be slightly faster than GTX460 1GB, but at 4xAA, they will be on par with each other
    ii) In the previous gen, SLI scaling WAS better than Crossfire; but in the new gen cards such as 6850/6870, Crossfire scalling has improved, and is now ON PAR WITH SLI scaling performance, but NOT superior to it
     
  17. Sketchee

    Sketchee Suddenly, looters! Hundreds of 'em!

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    No no, you've got it all wrong he was just addressing you by name! :thumb:

    We're all friends here
     
  18. Pete J

    Pete J Employed scum

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    You've got a good point actually: from what I've seen Nvidia almost always handle 4+xAA better than ATI.
     
  19. Guest-44432

    Guest-44432 Guest

    You know from experience (Not long ago) not to go by what review site always say.
    Before I went to my 3x 24" monitors, I could run every game with at least 4xAA on my old 3008wfp with my HD5970.
    Even now with my res @ 6088x1200 I can run most games with 2xAA.
    So I think you will find that AA is not a real problem with ATI cards now.

    Cheers,

    Simon.
     
  20. Pete J

    Pete J Employed scum

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    True, true.
     

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