What is the best GTX 970 to buy right now?

Dec 30, 2011
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#1
Long time reader seldom poster lol. Anyway I finally replaced my 7 year old gaming pc and now I have an i5 4690K/z97 based system. I only play at 1080p but I think the GTX 970 would still be the best card for me so I can max out most games coming out within the next year or so. I am aware of the memory scandal but doubt it will ever effect me. What is currently the best GTX 970 within the typical price range? I've read a lot of reviews but it is a bit overwhelming with so many different brands and models. I'd like to try to get one that will include the Witcher 3 but that isn't a deal breaker. I want it to be cool, quiet, and hopefully no coil whine.

Also in the " GTX Titan X 12GB vs R9 390X 4GB vs Unknown GM200 GPU" thread http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2424218 there is a chart that shows a new 3 GB 9x Nvidia card. Any idea what that is and if it might be worth waiting for?
 
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Leyawiin

Diamond Member
Nov 11, 2008
3,196
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#3
$70 more for the same performance ....
Only its not. I've had both and the GTX 970 is better... particularly at the OP's resolution. That's $30 rebate "card" doesn't really factor in the price. Its a nice little perk 8-12 weeks down the road if all goes well (and with MIRs it often doesn't).
 

The Alias

Senior member
Aug 22, 2012
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#4
Only its not. I've had both and the GTX 970 is better... particularly at the OP's resolution. That's $30 rebate "card" doesn't really factor in the price. Its a nice little perk 8-12 weeks down the road if all goes well (and with MIRs it often doesn't).
Since when do we not factor in mir? and also whatever difference there is will not allow for higher settings. Especially not in the future with more vram intensive games. Overall the 970 is not worth $50+ more.
 

psolord

Golden Member
Sep 16, 2009
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#5
Hello OP.

I have a GTX 970 and having come from 7950 crossfire (which I still have and use) I am very happy from all angles.

So far the memory issue has not affected me as well.

I have uploaded many benchmarks (digitally recorded with an external recorder, custom gameplays and built it benchmarks) of my Gigabyte G1 GTX 970 on my channel.

You can do a search for "2500k GTX 970" to watch the tests of my better rig, because I am now testing the performance on my old Q9550, so these vids are shown first and sometimes the performance is not too flattering.

I don't have any coil whine whatsoever, but in some of my videos there does exist some noise that sounds like coil whine, but that was me being stupid and passing the microphone cable under the psu (+also cheap cables which I will replace asap).

If you want anything specific to test, feel free to contact me.

As for the GTX 970 itself, go for it, plain and simple. Along with the 3dfx Voodoo, 8800GTX and 5850s this is among the best cards I have gotten. It's a good thing that it has this memory flaw, otherwise it would be too perfect, lol (j/k Nvidia lost points in my eyes for this).
 
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nitromullet

Diamond Member
Jan 7, 2004
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#6
I think the general consensus is that the Gigabyte G1 Gaming, MSI Gaming G4, and Asus Strix are the preferred cards in the typical GTX 970 price range.

I personally like the NVIDIA reference card from Best Buy.

Honestly though, depending on how much of a hurry you're in, I'd probably wait until NVIDIA launch the Titan X's mainstream counterpart, and pick up whatever reduced cost card they morph the GTX 980 into. The GTX 970 was an interesting card in Oct 2014, but not so much in March 2015 IMO.
 

skipsneeky2

Diamond Member
May 21, 2011
5,037
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#7
Loving my Asus Strix so far,0% fan when idle is nice as well as the backplate.Games like Crysis 3 and BF4 push it as far as 63 cel.I could uninstall afterburner and trust that the card won't hit even 70cel.I don't do much overclocking so the single 8 pin design works perfectly for me with my build.:)

Quieter then G1 Gaming,cheaper at least when i bought it over the G1 and MSI Gaming so i think at this point you just pick the cheapest of the 3 like i did and go with it.I spent days and hours trying to figure it out myself and decided just to let the cheapest one be the one i buy lol.
 

Techhog

Platinum Member
Sep 11, 2013
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#10
Since when do we not factor in mir? and also whatever difference there is will not allow for higher settings. Especially not in the future with more vram intensive games. Overall the 970 is not worth $50+ more.
I wish that you guys would stop factoring in rebates. 95% of the time you guys talk about a price without mentioning the rebate, then a guy will mention that he has a strict $1000 budget, you guys make a build with that, and then it comes out to $1100-1200 before rebates. Plus, a rebate prevents you from returning it so not everyone wants to bother with it. The two I tried didn't even work.
 

skipsneeky2

Diamond Member
May 21, 2011
5,037
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#12
Thanks for the ideas. It seems Nvidia is releasing a GTX 960 TI/965 after all.

http://wccftech.com/amd-r9-390x-nvidia-gtx-980ti-titanx-benchmarks/

I'm not sure if I want to wait until the Titan and the other new cards launch though it will still be a few months before you can buy them right?
A GTX 960 TI isn't going to compete with a 290,the cheaper competitor to the 970.I wouldn't wait for that gpu considering the 290 surely will be better if those charts are anything to go buy while priced about the same.

That chip should have been the one replacing the GTX 760 in all seriousness,not that 960 non ti bs.Only people outside of loyalist going for a 960 Ti will be those on lower end power supplies.
 
Dec 30, 2011
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#14
I'd surely wait if I was planning on spending any kinda money on a GPU too.
well I am using a 750 ti from my old pc until I figure out what to do. To be honest a 970 is probably a bit overkill for the games I will play but I want something that I won't have to replace for at least a year. I figured it was the best way to go.

How long do people think it will be until the new cards come out? I definitely won't be buying anything that cost more than a GTX 970 so I am not sure there are any better options but maybe prices will go down significantly.
 

Gloomy

Golden Member
Oct 12, 2010
1,462
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#15
well I am using a 750 ti from my old pc until I figure out what to do. To be honest a 970 is probably a bit overkill for the games I will play but I want something that I won't have to replace for at least a year. I figured it was the best way to go.

How long do people think it will be until the new cards come out? I definitely won't be buying anything that cost more than a GTX 970 so I am not sure there are any better options but maybe prices will go down significantly.
I expect the 980 will get pushed down closer to the 970's price point towards the end of this year, and we'll have faster cards take over the 500+ dollar brackets.

To be honest waiting right now seems like a waste of time, I don't think the performance difference between the 970 and 980 is worth waiting months for.

But at the same time, if you're good for now why not wait?
 

Ramses

Platinum Member
Apr 26, 2000
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#16
If you only need it to be good for a year, and you think a 970 is overkill based on available review/benchmarks, buy the cheapest decent brand one you can find and enjoy for a couple years. I'd only wait if you are in the $400ish bracket and plan on buying upcoming serious graphics games in the next year and/or run high resolution.
 

StefanWylde

Junior Member
Jun 12, 2012
14
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www.hardwarehazard.com
#17
So there will be no GTX 970 refresh? That will actually utilize all 4GB properly ? (please avoid smart ass replies because I know what you mean)
 

Ramses

Platinum Member
Apr 26, 2000
2,871
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#18
I think that ram thing is an intentional architectural limit/feature. No easy way around it other than buy a 980. Maybe a 980ti will come to be.
 

Techhog

Platinum Member
Sep 11, 2013
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#19
So there will be no GTX 970 refresh? That will actually utilize all 4GB properly ? (please avoid smart ass replies because I know what you mean)
No, there won't. It's a technical limitation.
 

Subyman

Moderator <br> VC&G Forum
Mar 18, 2005
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#20
Thanks for the ideas. It seems Nvidia is releasing a GTX 960 TI/965 after all.

http://wccftech.com/amd-r9-390x-nvidia-gtx-980ti-titanx-benchmarks/

I'm not sure if I want to wait until the Titan and the other new cards launch though it will still be a few months before you can buy them right?
Titan news is coming early next week and is rumored to be released along side the announcement. However, it shouldn't affect 970 prices. Nvidia won't move around the mid-range cards until AMD does something. Might be a month or so for that stuff to get out. If you are itching to play games then the 970 will be fine at 1080p for quite some time.
 

rgallant

Golden Member
Apr 14, 2007
1,361
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#21
So there will be no GTX 970 refresh? That will actually utilize all 4GB properly ? (please avoid smart ass replies because I know what you mean)
there is no reason for a refresh all nv has to do is stop using chips with 1 bad sm and all the 4gb can be used with out the 3.5 vram cap in the drivers . plus make drivers for the gtx970 Real . imo.
 
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riversend

Senior member
Dec 31, 2009
477
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#22
OP, if up until now you were good with your 7 yr old system and a 750ti, then I suspect a 970 or r9 290 will last you a couple of years. If you have the money, then get what you want and enjoy, otherwise look at the price-performance and your personal tendencies over the long run to determine what to put in your system.

Since you upgrade infrequently, you could certainly wait and see what AMD's new parts do to the market. You do not seem to be in a hurry.
 

Headfoot

Diamond Member
Feb 28, 2008
4,408
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#23
r9 290. 970 is not worth an extra $50-70. It's 0-10% faster on average. At best its 10% at 1080p. Either that or hang on with your old video card until the new cards drop and re-evaluate at that time. Unless you plan on day-1 buying The Witcher 3, in which case they'll end up being a lot closer price wise due to the bundling.
 

guskline

Diamond Member
Apr 17, 2006
5,340
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#24
I own 3 Sapphire Tri-X OC R9 290s and owned a Gigabyte G1 Gamer GTX970. The 970 is slightly faster and can OC further. HOWEVER, the memory limitation factor of the GTX970 is something to consider. I sent back the 970 and replaced it with a R9 290 due to the memory allocation issue.

If you stay at 1080p resolution the GTX970 may be the ticket.
 

shady28

Platinum Member
Apr 11, 2004
2,173
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#25
Since when do we not factor in mir? and also whatever difference there is will not allow for higher settings. Especially not in the future with more vram intensive games. Overall the 970 is not worth $50+ more.
There's a reason why companies do **Mail In Rebates** instead of just lowering price, or providing the discount /rebate at the checkout, and it isn't to benefit the consumer.

Some states in the US actually require any "rebates" to be given at check-out because of these practices and associated complaints. I believe the EU has similar regulation because of the underhanded practices regarding MIRs.


From Wikipedia regarding why MIRs are used :

"Not all buyers will meet the criteria to receive the rebate. Companies often require the original UPC barcode, receipt, and additional information, which a buyer may forget to include when redeeming the rebate. Companies almost always add other caveats to the rebate as well, such as the redemption having to be postmarked by a certain date. Another tactic that might be used is to disguise the rebate mail to look like junk mail, so that the customer may overlook it. Rebate processing companies even pride themselves for "returning the least amount of money".

The result :

"PMA, a marketing firm, estimated that in 2005, $486.5 million worth of rebates were redeemed. The redemption rates averaged 21.1% when calculated as a percentage of total sales..."


So in the real world, only 21% of rebates actually occur.
 

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