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GTX 970, R9 290X or wait?

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PliotronX

Diamond Member
Oct 17, 1999
8,883
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I would still take some caution and lubricate the fans before you put those in. Hot running cards tend to burn up oil in the axial fans like that so if they have been used for mining it's possible the fans may need some lubricating. You do not want the fans to run dry, they start rattling and eventually you will ruin the bearings.
This would only apply to sleeve bearings and sleeve bearings should be nowhere near video cards (and power supplies) because they run horizontally which throws sleeve bearings off balance, reducing their life compared to ball bearings.
 

Galatian

Senior member
Dec 7, 2012
372
0
71
Also need a good quality PSU, 30A per 12v rail on a PSU is not enough for a 1300mhz R9 290.

30A *12v = 360watts

360watts is not enough for 1300mhz.



It is so easy to press "Buy" button on the net compared to paying in a store.

Feel so good though
I have the Corsair AX1500i...should be enough ;-)



I would still take some caution and lubricate the fans before you put those in. Hot running cards tend to burn up oil in the axial fans like that so if they have been used for mining it's possible the fans may need some lubricating. You do not want the fans to run dry, they start rattling and eventually you will ruin the bearings.

Well I would be using water blocks anyway but thanks for the tips.

Unfortunately the guy just contacted me...he "accidentally damaged both cards while taking them out of the case" (read: I wanted more money for them). Well in contact with PayPal now.
 
Sep 27, 2014
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I have the Corsair AX1500i...should be enough ;-)






Well I would be using water blocks anyway but thanks for the tips.

Unfortunately the guy just contacted me...he "accidentally damaged both cards while taking them out of the case" (read: I wanted more money for them). Well in contact with PayPal now.
Whaaaaaat?
 
Feb 19, 2009
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Yeah I'm puzzled how you can break 2 cards while getting them out of your case. It sounds so fishy but innocent until proven otherwise.
If you are water cooling you don't need to pay a premium for fancy coolers like the TriX, just get 2 x reference R290/X used on ebay. The reference design is very beefy and has no issues with mining load for extended periods, only the fans ever suffer. I still have a reference 5850 that was mining for a LONG time at 100% load and its still awesome in gaming (at low/med 1080p).

At 1.2ghz, R290X is no slouch, especially in CF. Enough for 4K gaming (unless you crank up MSAA 4x) & Mantle in Civ BE & Star Citizen should do wonders.
 

guskline

Diamond Member
Apr 17, 2006
5,338
474
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If you are water cooling you don't need to pay a premium for fancy coolers like the TriX, just get 2 x reference R290/X used on ebay. The reference design is very beefy and has no issues with mining load for extended periods, only the fans ever suffer. I still have a reference 5850 that was mining for a LONG time at 100% load and its still awesome in gaming (at low/med 1080p).

At 1.2ghz, R290X is no slouch, especially in CF. Enough for 4K gaming (unless you crank up MSAA 4x) & Mantle in Civ BE & Star Citizen should do wonders.
SilverForce, I agree. I originally bought a single Sapphire Tri-X R9 290 which I used in my FX8350 rig. When I decided to go to 2 R9-29-0s in CF I decided to spend a bit more and get an identical gpu. It's cheaper to buy the reference R9 290s but the Sapphire Tri-X is OC'd to 1000 core/1300 mem stock PLUS it has a fabulous air cooler. I felt a pang of guilt while taking off those outstanding air coolers but the EK waterblocks fit well and water cooling the blocks is really nice.
 

Galatian

Senior member
Dec 7, 2012
372
0
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It's really hard to figure out what GTX 970 is the best, when you are looking for best possible overclock with a water block. How do I know which one has the highest power target for maximum overclock?
 

fleshconsumed

Diamond Member
Feb 21, 2002
6,135
1,528
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This would only apply to sleeve bearings and sleeve bearings should be nowhere near video cards (and power supplies) because they run horizontally which throws sleeve bearings off balance, reducing their life compared to ball bearings.
It's not really important anymore seeing how OP won't be getting his 290x's anyway, but I've fixed rattling/stuck fans on Gigabyte Windforce 7970's that way. I have no idea if they were sleeve or ball bearing fans, but they rattled and one of the three fans was actually stuck. Lubricating those fans fixed them and made them like new.
 

RussianSensation

Elite Member
Sep 5, 2003
19,458
745
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It's really hard to figure out what GTX 970 is the best, when you are looking for best possible overclock with a water block. How do I know which one has the highest power target for maximum overclock?
Forget the 970. MSI Gaming 780Ti is $390 ($370 after $20 Newegg gift card) and it's just 10% slower than a 980. That's really the bargain now that everyone keeps ignoring. If you can hit 1.25Ghz on that 780Ti, you basically = 1.5Ghz 980. You also get BL:p game that doesn't come with 970/980. This is just an incredible deal since 2 of these cards ~ $720 or just $100 more than Gigabyte G1 980. :eek:
 
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Feb 19, 2009
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Forget the 970. MSI Gaming 780Ti is $380 ($360 after $20 Newegg gift card) and it's just 10% slower than a 980. That's really the bargain now that everyone keeps ignoring. If you can hit 1.25Ghz on that 780Ti, you basically = 1.5Ghz 980. You also get BL:p game that doesn't come with 970/980. This is just an incredible deal since 2 of these cards ~ $720 or just $100 more than Gigabyte G1 980. :eek:
Australia mate.

We rarely get the luxury of newegg due to items "Not available" for our region or the shipping is ridiculous.
 

wand3r3r

Diamond Member
May 16, 2008
3,180
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If you decide to purchase there sure are some compelling deals!

XFX 290x for $329!
MSI Gaming 290 for $250!

Both of them are excellent cards, and are excellent price/performance as well compared to the 970 MSRP and even better deals if you are looking at 970 $350+ prices.

That said, I suspect the end of Q1 will bring about a 390x but it will probably be priced a lot higher.
 

Galatian

Senior member
Dec 7, 2012
372
0
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It's really hard finding definite informations about my questions. The R9 290X can be had for 299€, though a waterblock is slightly more expensive for it then for the GTX 970. The power target on the later card though is not really high enough to get good overclocks on the reference PCB if you want to watercool, so overclocked under water I'm still not sure which one is the better card
 
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RussianSensation

Elite Member
Sep 5, 2003
19,458
745
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It's really hard finding definite informations about my questions. The R9 290X can be had for 299€, though a waterblock is slightly more expensive for it then for the GTX 970. The power target on the later card though is not really high enough to get good overclocks on the reference PCB if you want to watercool, so overclocked under water I'm still not sure which one is the better card
1. Even if you watercool a 290/290X, max overclocked, it won't really beat an air-cooled 1.5Ghz 970.

2. There is little point in watercooling a 970/980 since they barely have any voltage control and air-cooled MSI Gaming / Gigabyte G1 already run cool and quiet at 1.5Ghz overclocks, while MSI Gaming shuts the fans off up to 65C (idle/2D desktop work).

3. If you want to watercool a card that has real voltage control, then try to get an EVGA Classified 780Ti. At 1.3-1.4Ghz, it'll outperform the 970/290X handily at 2560x1600 or lower, while costing less than the 980.

980 at 1.48Ghz



At only 1.155 Ghz Boost, the 780Ti is kicking ass. With 1.35V voltage control , if you get 1.3Ghz+ on the 780Ti, it will be fast.



Otherwise, pick up used after-market R9 290s or 970s as 6 to 8-months stopgap cards until 390X/GM200. Then sell those and get 390Xs/GM200s and then buy waterblocks.
 

ocre

Golden Member
Dec 26, 2008
1,594
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I agree a lot with RS

There is no point in getting a water block for the gm204 (970 or 980)

Also, you may be able to find a great deal on some used 780ti's if you really want to go with water. Same for the Hawaii route.

But for the gtx970s, i dont think water would give you any performance atm. But sometimes people do things because they just want to and thats alright to. I mean, if you just want to do it cause its cool....more power. Also, you never know, down the line there might be some bios that unlocks more voltage control. But at 1500mhz, i just dont know how much more can come out of 28nm silicon.

I also think RS has brought up a good scenario. Pick up the 970s as a stop gap and dump them when the big boys come out (390x,gm200) and water cool them.

I dont foresee a massive price drop coming for the 970 any time soon. It is a pretty safe bet they wont drop much so your cards should hold value
 
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