Upgrade now or wait?

Discussion in 'Video Cards and Graphics' started by anindrew, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. anindrew

    anindrew Senior member

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    Hi all! I'm using the system as indicated in my sig. I got some newegg gift cards for a late holiday gift. I'm heavily considering getting a new video card. At the same time, the current gen of cards have been out for a while. When asked in the comments during the live CES Nvidia blog where the 780 was, Ryan Smith with AT said, "You're about 4 months too early, I'm afraid. Check back in the Spring." It is certainly tough to wait. At the same time, I am hoping to upgrade my whole system soon after Intel's next desktop chips are released.

    What do you think? Upgrade now and take that vid card to my next system? Or wait it out and perhaps get a new monitor soon?

    With the vid cards, I'm mostly looking at a GTX 670 or 7970. It's a bit tough to decide as they seem to trade blows. I play FPS like TF2, just got Metro 2033, would like to get Far Cry 3, etc. I also like Starcraft 2, Darksiders 2, and Batman Arkham City. The latter 2 of those have some bad slow downs with my GTX 260.

    Thanks for reading and commenting.
     
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  3. BrightCandle

    BrightCandle Diamond Member

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    If new CPU and GPU is what you are after then waiting for maybe half a year is what that will take. From what I have seen so far I am not expecting the new hardware on the CPU to bring much more than 15% and the GPUs maybe 30%. On the GPU side its all at the same process so it will be similar but with some tweaks. The CPU is also on the same process.

    The CPU is a genuine change in architecture however so could bring considerably more advantages. If I was going to recommend waiting it would be for haswell but not the GPUs.
     
  4. Dooms87

    Dooms87 Member

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    I say Wait it out. i have basically the same rig as you minus the gpu i upgrade that all the time cause im a fps freak but not the point. 1336 is becoming the new 775 in terms of people waiting for the next big thing from intel and the gpu companies to finally get a worth while upgrade
     
  5. InfoTiger

    InfoTiger Golden Member

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    You just need to find a GPU for a good price.Enjoy better than suffer. Life is too short.
    CPU should be fine for a while.
     
  6. anindrew

    anindrew Senior member

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    Thanks for the responses so far. You all make some great points. The only time my current system feels slow to me is when I'm playing newer games. For everything else I do, it still seems quite speedy. Still, it would be nice to have a motherboard/system that supports USB3, SATA3, PCI-e 3.0, etc. That and the extra performance are why I'll upgrade to a newer system with Haswell's release.

    It's very tough waiting for the new GPUs as they are 4-6 months away. When I look on newegg now, there aren't a lot of deals for 7970s. There are a few decent deals for GTX670s, but nothing spectacular. I remember when I got the GTX260, it was about $300 and laughed at EVERY game I threw at it (except for Crysis) for at least a couple years. Far Cry 2, which was free with the card, was so good looking to me. I noticed AMD doesn't have their game bundle anymore. Nvidia still does, but I'm not as excited for those. It's a tough call between the 7970 and 670. Anyone see any standout cards?

    If I happen to choose to wait, at least my gift card doesn't ever expire or reduce.
     
  7. 3DVagabond

    3DVagabond Lifer

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    Want to save some money get a 7950B for ~$300. It's as fast as a 670 and can O/C out of the 670's reach.
     
  8. InfoTiger

    InfoTiger Golden Member

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    Look for a used 7970/7950 in forsale section. They should be under $300.
     
  9. lehtv

    lehtv Lifer

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    New 7950 are already under $300, I'd expect used ones to go for <$250.
     
  10. willomz

    willomz Senior member

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    If it was me, I'd get something now. The good news is that you don't need to spend much to blow your GTX 260 away.

    The question is more how much you are willing to spend. If you are coping with GTX 260 performance today, I'd suggest going as far as a 670/7970 might be too much to spend. Even something as modest as a 7850/660 (can be found under $200 new) is going to be a gigantic improvement.

    If you wanted to upgrade further they wouldn't be hard to sell on, or you could go for CF/SLI with your new rig.
     
  11. Termie

    Termie Diamond Member

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    Do you have the CPU overclocked? If not, something like the 7870 would be a good match for it. If it is, a 7950 is a good bet. Somewhere in the middle is the 660Ti, which has great out-of-box performance (very close to the 7950), but less OC headroom than the AMD cards.

    This is the best value in a 7950, for $280AR: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814202006

    This is the best value in a 660Ti, for $245AR, but has a loud cooler: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814162121

    While I personally wouldn't recommend it for you, this is the best value in a 7970, for $370AR: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814202008
     
  12. anindrew

    anindrew Senior member

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    Termie: I'm OCed to 3.8Ghz. I'm not sure my system can do 4Ghz, but 3.8 is pretty close.

    Thank you for the card recommendations. If I get a card now, I'm going to take it to my next system (Haswell), which is why I was considering a GTX670 or 7970. While I have no problem OCing a CPU, I've never had any great luck/success OCing a video card. If it isn't too difficult and has proper cooling, I may be tempted to give it a try. It is a bit scary when you've not had much experience doing it.

    It is difficult to judge the 670 vs 7970 as they seem to trade blows depending on the game. I play a lot of FPS, a few 3rd person action games (Batman, Darksider 2, etc), and the occasional RTS like Starcraft 2.
     
    #11 anindrew, Jan 10, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2013
  13. Termie

    Termie Diamond Member

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    With that CPU overclock, and your intention to use the GPU with your next build, I would get the 7970. The 670, at around the same price, simply is not as fast. I agree that GPU overclocking isn't quite as rewarding as CPU overclocking in terms of actual benefit. Until this generation, few cards could overclock much more than 15%, and payback on that 15% wasn't linear. While it's still not linear, certain AMD cards now have headroom in the range of 15-25% at stock volts, higher if overvolted. While nothing like the >40% overclock on your processor, which provides nearly 1:1 performance improvement, at least GPU overclocking is fairly easy.

    Take a look at this review comparing a 670 4GB to a reference 670 to a 7970 GHz edition: http://hardocp.com/article/2013/01/08/asus_geforce_gtx_670_directcu_ii_4gb_gpu_review/1

    The reason I link this review is that it uses the newest drivers for both AMD and nVidia, which most older reviews do not - they make a big difference. Note that the 670 4GB is an absolute dog - don't buy it. Just focus on the stock performance of the reference 670 and the 7970 GHz edition in this review. Three of the games in this review (Max Payne, Hitman, and Sleeping Dogs) are 3rd-person action/shooters.
     
  14. raghu78

    raghu78 Diamond Member

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    OP get a Gigabyte HD 7950 OC or Sapphire HD 7950 boost. at stock speeds matches GTX 670. at the same clocks HD 7950 is 3 - 6% slower than HD 7970. HD 7950 at 1100 mhz matches HD 7970 Ghz (1050 mhz). thats an easy to achieve overclock. unbeatable price perf. the game bundle is available at superbiiz

    http://www.superbiiz.com/detail.php?name=AT-7950BST
    http://www.superbiiz.com/detail.php?p=GA-795WF3G

    "At 1920x1200 the GeForce GTX 670 is 12% faster than the Radeon HD 7950 and just 2% faster than the 7950 Boost. However the GTX 670 is 27% more expensive than both cards, so whichever way you slice it the Radeon HD 7950 Boost is the better proposition and things just get worse for the GTX 670 as the resolution is increased."

    this is with stock power control at 0% with clocks not at 925 mhz. with power control maxed out the HD 7950 boost runs consistently at 925 mhz and easily is on par or faster than GTX 670.

    also to clarify the HD 7970 (1 ghz) beats GTX 680 on average across many games.

    http://www.techspot.com/review/603-best-graphics-cards/page12.html

    "Breaking down performance figures at 1920x1200, the GeForce GTX 680 was just ~1% faster than the Radeon HD 7970, while it trailed the 7970 GHz Edition by a 7% margin. This doesn&#8217;t change at 2560x1600, where the GeForce GTX 680 is 2% slower than the Radeon HD 7970 and 11% slower than the 7970 GHz Edition, making the 7970 the obvious choice."

    you can clearly see a HD 7970 (925 Mhz) is just 1% behind a GTX 680 which even at stock boosts upto 1100 mhz. HD 7970 at 1050 mhz is 7% faster than GTX 680. HD 7970 (1000 Mhz) would be around 4% faster on average.

    with overclocking a HD 7970 (1150 mhz) beats a GTX 680 (1250 Mhz) and so does a HD 7950 (1150 Mhz) against GTX 670 (1250 mhz) in the majority of the games.

    http://www.superbiiz.com/detail.php?name=AT-H7970CB

    add to it the game bundle which is an excellent one and its a easy choice.
     
    #13 raghu78, Jan 11, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2013
  15. anindrew

    anindrew Senior member

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    raghu78: Wow, that is quite a reply! I didn't know any stores still had the game bundle. I thought that promo ended on 12/31/12. If superbiz is still offering it, then I'd gladly order there. Are they reliable and easy to deal with? I've never heard of them.

    If the 7950 can be OCed pretty easily to match/beat the GTX670's performance, then I wouldn't mind saving a few bucks. Plus, considering that I'm coming from a GTX260 (core 216...remember that stuff?), I'm sure the card would be SLAMMING fast in comparison.

    The reviews on the Saffire card seem to be slightly better than the Gigabyte, even though the cooler on the Gigabyte has one more fan. Is one considered any better than the other?

    I suppose I could hold onto my newegg giftcard for now and get something later if I order a card from superbiz. I would like that game bundle.
     
  16. moonbogg

    moonbogg Diamond Member

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    My buddy has a 7970ghz on the way. Now he'll be able to actually play BF3 with us. So, be like him and choose a fast card of you liking now and get in the game. Otherwise you will be sitting on your thumb for the next 6 months when you could have been gaming.
     
  17. tHa ShIzNiT

    tHa ShIzNiT Platinum Member

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    Can anyone confirm that the bundle will still come and be activateable (if that is a word) at this time? Since the promotion is over.

    I am dying to buy a card right now too, and I might have to hop on one of these.
     
  18. anindrew

    anindrew Senior member

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    I just read this on AMD's site, which would seem to indicate that the promotion is going until 3/31/13. It seems the discount on Medal Of Honor expired at the end of last year.

    "Promotion Period: Promotion begins October 22, 2012 and ends on March 31, 2013. Medal of Honor Warfighter Digital Deluxe 20% discount expires December 31, 2012. Game Keys must be used to obtain Free Game downloads by April 30, 2013 and Discount Game Keys must be used to obtain discounted purchase of Discount Game on or before December 31, 2012, after which the Game Keys and Discount Game Keys are void, except that FARCRY 3 game keys are valid for a period of 1 year starting October 22, 2012 and will expire on October 22, 2013."

    http://sites.amd.com/us/promo/graphics/Pages/never-settle-offer-terms-and-conditions.aspx

    Perhaps writing superbiz would get a straight answer on this.
     
    #17 anindrew, Jan 11, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2013
  19. Termie

    Termie Diamond Member

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    Not sure what you're concerned about. The only thing that has expired is the worthless 20% discount on Medal of Honor, which was one of the worst games of 2012. The actual games are still being offered.

    The games codes come on a paper insert in the package. Newegg simply ran out of them - Superbiiz still has some.
     
  20. anindrew

    anindrew Senior member

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    That makes sense. At first I thought the whole game package deal expired at the end of last year, so I was making sure it was still valid. It's good to know that it is.

    After I pay a couple bills, I think I'll order one of those 7950s. Just not sure which yet.
     
  21. anindrew

    anindrew Senior member

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    I went with the Gigabyte 7950 from superbiiz. Plus, I found a coupon code NYRESO2013 for $10 off any order over $99, so that paid for shipping and a little bit of the card. The code expires today FYI. Thanks again for all the advice and suggestions! The card should be here in a few days. I'm looking forward to playing Far Cry 3.

    I'll have to check out that other thread about OCing the 7950s, so I can give that a try.
     
    #20 anindrew, Jan 14, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013
  22. FalseChristian

    FalseChristian Diamond Member

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    Save some money (alot, actually) and get 1 or 2 GTX 660 (non-Ti) for around half the price of a GTX 670 with performance of over 70% greater than 1 of my GTX 460 1GB. I'm saving up for 2 of those for some SLI goodness.