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At what price point is a 970 or 980 the best choice?

bfromcolo

Member
Jan 12, 2012
48
0
66
The unavailability of the RX-480 and GTX-1060 is starting to tick me off. With a $230 option for a GTX-970 and a $290 option for a GTX-980 on the EVGA site at the moment, is it really worth waiting for these newer cards to be available? I am gaming on a reference Zotac GTX-760 2G card at 1920x1200, and would like to upgrade. But I have to wonder at what price point is buying last year's tech a better deal? Playing through FO3 currently and I can max it out just fine with my system, so I am not in a hurry, but watching prices fall on Maxwell has got me thinking about where the value proposition is. I also do distributed computing projects like FAH and BOINC as well so the power requirements is a factor in my thinking, but I can't remember a so called launch when you really can't buy the new cards. And cards I would have loved to have a year ago are now much cheaper.
 
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.vodka

Golden Member
Dec 5, 2014
1,173
1,468
136
You can stretch your 760 a bit longer. Just wait for a 1060 if you want to go nV, or a RX480 if you want to try AMD. Once stock shows up, enjoy your shiny new card.

Don't waste your money on outdated tech like 970 and 980 that's been made for the DX11 era, once more and more DX12 games keep coming out you'll regret buying any of these cards in the 9xx line. 970 on top of that suffers from the 3.5+0.5GB problem, stay away from that piece of garbage. 980 for $290 is overpriced. Now if we were talking $100-$130 then sure, that's much more reasonable.


That is, if you care about making a purchase that will last. If you don't, go ahead with a 970 or 980... they're upgrades over what you have right now. Remember in this case you're buying cards nearing their "expiration" date, where performance drops off a cliff relative to launch performance and the competition's by this point and it's gonna get worse. That's how it is with nV lately, for the past two or three generations. Your GTX 760 has been hit pretty hard by this...
 

KevinH

Diamond Member
Nov 19, 2000
3,110
7
81
I'm struggling with this one too. I have a friend that'll sell me his Zotac 970 for $150 bucks. I've had the Zotac 1060 Mini in my cart a few times in the last few days but with tax, it's around $270. I obviously would rather have the 1060 but I don't know about the % increase in price. I've already finished Witcher 3 and Fallout 4 so it'll be at least another few months before I dive into a game that really warrants an upgrade.

Just fyi though bfromcolo, you should check Newegg at night. I've seen cards start to show in stock around 9pm-1am pst. My guess is that they offload their deliveries and start doing inventory and inputting into the system at day's end. Good luck! They're definitely available as I've had a card in my cart on several occasions at night.
 

positivedoppler

Golden Member
Apr 30, 2012
1,013
114
106
If it's possible to get a 4 gb 480 for $199(not possible thanks to miners) then the 3.5 gb 970 with inferior DX12 performance should be a tad less than the $150 470 if it becomes available.
 

boozzer

Golden Member
Jan 12, 2012
1,549
17
81
I'm struggling with this one too. I have a friend that'll sell me his Zotac 970 for $150 bucks. I've had the Zotac 1060 Mini in my cart a few times in the last few days but with tax, it's around $270. I obviously would rather have the 1060 but I don't know about the % increase in price. I've already finished Witcher 3 and Fallout 4 so it'll be at least another few months before I dive into a game that really warrants an upgrade.

Just fyi though bfromcolo, you should check Newegg at night. I've seen cards start to show in stock around 9pm-1am pst. My guess is that they offload their deliveries and start doing inventory and inputting into the system at day's end. Good luck! They're definitely available as I've had a card in my cart on several occasions at night.
if your only want nv and the price difference between a used 970 and a new 1060 is 120$ 120/150 = 80% even if you lose 10-20% performance over the next year on the 970, it would still be ok, if you can stand the 970's performance.

other wise a 199$ 480 4gb would be perfect, you just gotta be open to amd gpus though :twisted: complaining about miners buying them all up just shows how bad of a shopper you are :twisted:
 

KevinH

Diamond Member
Nov 19, 2000
3,110
7
81
if your only want nv and the price difference between a used 970 and a new 1060 is 120$ 120/150 = 80% even if you lose 10-20% performance over the next year on the 970, it would still be ok, if you can stand the 970's performance.

other wise a 199$ 480 4gb would be perfect, you just gotta be open to amd gpus though :twisted: complaining about miners buying them all up just shows how bad of a shopper you are :twisted:

I'm going to see what the 4gb AIB's have in store. If I can score one for $199 after rebate, I'm definitely going that route.
 

nerp

Diamond Member
Dec 31, 2005
9,834
76
91
I'd wait for the stock situation to settle and more AIB cards to come out. Then you'll have choices between 480s and 1060s to your content. Sounds like you can bide your time a little bit.
 

SteveGrabowski

Diamond Member
Oct 20, 2014
3,357
1,795
136
I don't think there is any 900 series card worth buying right now new considering how much Maxwell seems to choke on DX12.
 

SteveGrabowski

Diamond Member
Oct 20, 2014
3,357
1,795
136
I'm struggling with this one too. I have a friend that'll sell me his Zotac 970 for $150 bucks. I've had the Zotac 1060 Mini in my cart a few times in the last few days but with tax, it's around $270. I obviously would rather have the 1060 but I don't know about the % increase in price. I've already finished Witcher 3 and Fallout 4 so it'll be at least another few months before I dive into a game that really warrants an upgrade.

Just fyi though bfromcolo, you should check Newegg at night. I've seen cards start to show in stock around 9pm-1am pst. My guess is that they offload their deliveries and start doing inventory and inputting into the system at day's end. Good luck! They're definitely available as I've had a card in my cart on several occasions at night.
If you're not going to use the 1060 right now you might as well wait until the Christmas season game launches begin to buy. By then Nvidia will probably be bundling a game with each card, maybe you'll get lucky and get two like when they were bundling Witcher 3 and Arkham Knight together.

EDIT: LOL this is my 2^10th post
 

Gikaseixas

Platinum Member
Jul 1, 2004
2,841
218
106
Only Maxwell I'd buy right now would be the 980ti for no more than 300 because of its sheer brute force, meaning that it still performs given the arch limits. A 1060 or a 480 would be the best bet.

Sent from my HUAWEI MT7-L09 using Tapatalk
 

Leyawiin

Diamond Member
Nov 11, 2008
3,205
51
91
If you need a card right this instant a GTX 970 is fine @ $170 or less (for a 1080p monitor). There are a lot of people who change GPUs like underwear and are dumping practically new cards to get the new models. I really don't think you'll find a used GTX 980 for a price that would be worth it vs. an RX 480 or GTX 1060.
 

crisium

Platinum Member
Aug 19, 2001
2,634
591
136
I still remember the threads in early 2012 wondering if discount Fermi was worth it instead of 7850/7870 (and later GTX 660/660Ti).

It was not if you intend to keep this card longer than as a stopgap.

This would be a similar mistake. An older architecture, few features, less VRAM, and worse performance-per-watt (compared to 1060 anyway, GM204 and Polaris are the nearly the same).

GTX 580 used to be faster than a 7870:
https://tpucdn.com/reviews/AMD/HD_7850_HD_7870/images/perfrel_1920.gif

Today?

370 is an overclocked 7850, 270X is an overclocked 7870, and they both outperform the 580:
https://www.computerbase.de/thema/grafikkarte/rangliste/

Time is not kind to the old, especially if they have less VRAM.

And I know I don't need to remind anyone how Kepler aged compared to Maxwell or GCN.

Avoid the old unless they are HEAVILY discounted and/or much faster. 1060 already matches a 980 and can be had for $250 if you can find it. Paying more for the 980 now is ludicrous. Saving merely $20 to go for the 970, an already slower card with a driver dependent memory system, is also not wise. If you can find a discount 980 Ti that's a different story though, depending on the price, as is a super discounted 970 (I'll echo the $170 suggestion, that's undercutting current gen enough).
 

Leyawiin

Diamond Member
Nov 11, 2008
3,205
51
91
Yeah, if at all possible hang on long enough for the supply of new models to catch up and the prices calm down on them. When/if that happens an RX 480 4GB @ $199.99 would be impossible to beat.
 

poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
14,613
315
126
$150 for the 970. It's going to age worse than almost any card in modern history. I would prefer a 470 ($180) so $150 sounds right. Nvidia cards seem to fall in a ditch when the drivers are optimized for the next generation, and the 970's performance is reliant on driver tricks. That is a bad combo.

About $225 for the 980. It gives 1060 performance but is an older generation and less RAM so its not worth more than a 1060.
 

DaveSimmons

Elite Member
Aug 12, 2001
40,736
669
126
Try to talk the friend down to $135 since they'll be getting $30 from nv someday? (Split the $30)
 

vissarix

Senior member
Jun 12, 2015
286
91
101
Well i would definitely try to buy new gpus if avaiable, especially the gtx1060...is 10% faster then a rx480 so its an easy choice...

The gtx970, gtx980 are not bad gpus but definitely perform worse on dx12 compared to the gtx1060.
 

crisium

Platinum Member
Aug 19, 2001
2,634
591
136
Well i would definitely try to buy new gpus if avaiable, especially the gtx1060...is 10% faster then a rx480 so its an easy choice...

The gtx970, gtx980 are not bad gpus but definitely perform worse on dx12 compared to the gtx1060.
Well, since DX12 performance is important to you, keep in mind the 1060 is not 10% faster than the 480 there - if anything in DX12 the two cards are more likely to trade blows or favor the 480. I hate to nitpick, but it really does look contradictory to say the 1060 is 10% faster than the 480 but then the very next sentence espouse the virtues of DX12 performance.

But you're right that the 970-980 are not bad and there's not necessarily a rush to upgrade from them, it's just not the best idea to upgrade to them in light of cards that will be supported longer.
 

poohbear

Platinum Member
Mar 11, 2003
2,286
4
81
I'm struggling with this one too. I have a friend that'll sell me his Zotac 970 for $150 bucks. I've had the Zotac 1060 Mini in my cart a few times in the last few days but with tax, it's around $270. I obviously would rather have the 1060 but I don't know about the % increase in price. I've already finished Witcher 3 and Fallout 4 so it'll be at least another few months before I dive into a game that really warrants an upgrade.

Just fyi though bfromcolo, you should check Newegg at night. I've seen cards start to show in stock around 9pm-1am pst. My guess is that they offload their deliveries and start doing inventory and inputting into the system at day's end. Good luck! They're definitely available as I've had a card in my cart on several occasions at night.
a gtx 970 @ $150 & a gtx 1060 for $270 i'd go with the GTX 970. I love mine and it regularly runs games @ 3.8GB-3.9GB VRAM, Nvidia's drivers do an awesome job of managing all the memory and it's never been a problem for me.
 

Leyawiin

Diamond Member
Nov 11, 2008
3,205
51
91
$150 for the 970. It's going to age worse than almost any card in modern history. I would prefer a 470 ($180) so $150 sounds right. Nvidia cards seem to fall in a ditch when the drivers are optimized for the next generation, and the 970's performance is reliant on driver tricks. That is a bad combo.
You have absolutely no idea how its go to "age" in a driver related sense. All the hand-wringing over Kepler generally turned out to be AMD finally getting their drivers in order... something they should have done three or four years ago. So yeah, all the HD 7950s and HD 7870s got a boost in performance down the road. They were always good hardware help back by crap driver support. That doesn't necessarily mean the latest generation are going to have the same result in three or four years.
 

crisium

Platinum Member
Aug 19, 2001
2,634
591
136
All the hand-wringing over Kepler generally turned out to be AMD finally getting their drivers in order...
No, that's maybe only half of the issue.

There are entire threads on this, have you missed them? This is an odd post to see this far into 2016, to be honest.
 

Termie

Diamond Member
Aug 17, 2005
7,952
47
91
www.techbuyersguru.com
For used cards I'd say $100 for a 970 and $125 for a 980. Brand new $150/$175.
A little extreme, don't you think? That would put your dual 980 Ti cards at about $200 each in the used market.

I realize a lot of folks are worked up about DX12, and yes, I can confirm Pascal runs DX12 about 10% better than Maxwell based on tests I've conducted, but the "sky is falling" routine on Maxwell is kind of out of hand. In almost every game currently on the market, the GTX 980 will beat the GTX 1060, and will wipe the floor with it when both are at maximum overclocks.

If you're really worried about next-gen DX12 games, a GTX 1060 is not what you should be buying.

And as far as I'm concerned, the RX 480 is non-existent. I actually ordered one just for fun but got tired of waiting for stock to appear. Bought a GTX 1080 instead. ;)
 

poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
14,613
315
126
You have absolutely no idea how its go to "age" in a driver related sense.
Agree. That was a prediction not a fact. Sorry if I didn't make that clear.

My prediction is based on Nvidia's recent history which means I could be completely wrong if they change tactics. I admit that.

All the hand-wringing over Kepler generally turned out to be AMD finally getting their drivers in order...
False. When The Witcher 3 came out at first the "Game Ready" driver really only helped Maxwell as Kepler cards were knocked down a lower tier than they belonged. Notice how far below the 970 the 780 ti was:





But because The Witcher 3 was the biggest game of the year people pitched a fit and a few weeks later Nvidia rolled out a driver that "fixed" Kepler. Notice how close the 780 ti was to the 970 after this fix:



So obviously Nvidia has/had the ability to improve Kepler performance if they wanted to. Point is they didn't want to, except that one time because the backlash was so intense.

AMD rolling out better drivers plus the console effect of Directx 12 only makes this all more pronounced. But Nvidia's choices do have a role to play.
 

Grooveriding

Diamond Member
Dec 25, 2008
9,078
1,197
126
A little extreme, don't you think? That would put your dual 980 Ti cards at about $200 each in the used market.

I realize a lot of folks are worked up about DX12, and yes, I can confirm Pascal runs DX12 about 10% better than Maxwell based on tests I've conducted, but the "sky is falling" routine on Maxwell is kind of out of hand. In almost every game currently on the market, the GTX 980 will beat the GTX 1060, and will wipe the floor with it when both are at maximum overclocks.

If you're really worried about next-gen DX12 games, a GTX 1060 is not what you should be buying.

And as far as I'm concerned, the RX 480 is non-existent. I actually ordered one just for fun but got tired of waiting for stock to appear. Bought a GTX 1080 instead. ;)
Basing it on what is available with similar performance and price in new cards. I would take a 480 or 1060 over a 970 or 980. Especially a 970 with how reliant it is on drivers to function properly. Nvidia cards don't age well and DX12 is here now and more and more big titles are releasing that use it.

My sig is not updated, I only have one 980ti - sold one, I'd price a 980ti today at $300 given the 1070's price. I doubt I'll get much more than $400 CDN when I sell the remaining one. I sold the other one for $600 a couple weeks before 1080 released, that pays for half a Pascal Titan, lol. The new cards kill the value of the old pretty fast. 970/980 used aren't worth more than what I said, at least if I were buying one, which I wouldn't even at those prices.
 

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