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2nd 670 for SLI or single R9 290?


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#1 Crow47

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 06:50 AM

Hey, all, title says it all. It's that time of year again, the time of crazy sales and insatiable itches for my next performance fix. I'm soon going to be upgrading to one of those Korean 1440p monitors, and my question is, am I better off buying a used 670 for SLI off of eBay for around $250 (unless somebody here is in a hurry to part with one!), or should I sell my 670, and buy a new R9 290? If you were me, what would you do? At the end of the day, assuming I can successfully sell my 670, my price out of pocket would be very similar, if not a little less for the R9. What does everybody think? 


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#2 Braegnok

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 07:54 AM

Both set ups are vary close performance wise,.. I would wait till late November to buy a R9 290 when the drivers mature and they launch non-reference cards like Direct CU II Top and other better cooling solutions.

 

http://www.game-deba...eforce-8400m-gt


Edited by Braegnok, 09 November 2013 - 04:20 PM.

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#3 Crow47

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 09:12 AM

First off, what a handy website! Thanks for showing me. 

 

My main concern with this is the GPU memory. Is 2GB really enough for 1440p moving onward?


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#4 Braegnok

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 10:13 AM

Benchmarks of the 4GB variants of the 670/680 show no improvement at high resolution over their 2GB counterparts,. I would think the 670 would be held back more by it's 256-bit memory bus then it is by 2GB vram amount.

 

@ 2560X1440 the GTX 670 in SLI will average mid 60 fps at 8XAA and in BF3 at MSAA 4X mid 60 fps avg also.


Edited by Braegnok, 09 November 2013 - 11:46 AM.

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#5 Black64

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 10:31 AM

One fast card > two medium cards


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#6 Crow47

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:21 PM

One fast card > two medium cards

That's kind of what I was thinking. I realize two 670's are nothing to scoff at, but I want to be sure I'm ready for games like Watch Dogs. 

 

OK, so when it comes down to it, how "bad" are the AMD drivers right now? I just read they released an update that upped the fan speed on the 290 which really helped speeds, but I'm concerned that was an issue at all. 


Edited by Crow47, 09 November 2013 - 12:23 PM.

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#7 DanTheGamer11

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:33 PM

 

One fast card > two medium cards

That's kind of what I was thinking. I realize two 670's are nothing to scoff at, but I want to be sure I'm ready for games like Watch Dogs. 

 

OK, so when it comes down to it, how "bad" are the AMD drivers right now? I just read they released an update that upped the fan speed on the 290 which really helped speeds, but I'm concerned that was an issue at all. 

 

 

I have a 7950 and the driver is treating me fine. Apparently different manufacturers had different default RPM settings and the driver makes them all run at the speed AMD wants them to, a few hundred RPM makes a big difference. That and apparently testers were given golden  sample cards... read more at Tom's Hardware I think 


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#8 Braegnok

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 01:23 PM

It was an issue,.. the fan speed will effect the effectiveness of the clock frequency to stabilize around the 947MHz core frequency,.. if temp/power is not ideal,.. so with fan originally set at 40% the R9 290 was crippled in performance.

 

The new Beta V8 driver bumped up the fan speed to 47% so now the dynamic clock speeds stabilize around the 947MHz core frequency and performance went up as much as 20%,.. which is huge for a driver update.

 

The R9 290 has so much untapped performance headroom I would expect it to achieve higher framerates than the GTX 780 or even the Titan when running 4K resolutions. :yes:


Edited by Braegnok, 09 November 2013 - 01:40 PM.

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#9 ccokeman

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 01:40 PM

 

 

One fast card > two medium cards

That's kind of what I was thinking. I realize two 670's are nothing to scoff at, but I want to be sure I'm ready for games like Watch Dogs. 

 

OK, so when it comes down to it, how "bad" are the AMD drivers right now? I just read they released an update that upped the fan speed on the 290 which really helped speeds, but I'm concerned that was an issue at all. 

 

 

I have a 7950 and the driver is treating me fine. Apparently different manufacturers had different default RPM settings and the driver makes them all run at the speed AMD wants them to, a few hundred RPM makes a big difference. That and apparently testers were given golden  sample cards... read more at Tom's Hardware I think 

 

 

Had the same issues as Toms here in our testing. There is a fine line between where and how the 290X throttles. The new drivers are supposed to help by setting higher base fan speeds to minimize the noise and improve that specific point. It seems the retail cards are worse in that respect but I have yet to put my hands on one although one is supposed to be on the way.   


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#10 ccokeman

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 01:46 PM

It was an issue,.. the fan speed will effect the effectiveness of the clock frequency to stabilize around the 947MHz core frequency,.. if temp/power is not ideal,.. so with fan originally set at 40% the R9 290 was crippled in performance.

 

The new Beta V8 driver bumped up the fan speed to 47% so now the dynamic clock speeds stabilize around the 947MHz core frequency and performance went up as much as 20%,.. which is huge for a driver update.

 

The R9 290 has so much untapped performance headroom I would expect it to achieve higher framerates than the GTX 780 or even the Titan when running 4K resolutions. :yes:

 

 

I understand the reasons for quiet mode and uber mode but the reality is that most people will just slap the card into the system and load the drivers and be underwhelmed. What was the overall worst part of the deal is that it seems the clock speed was held high for about 90 seconds to 2 minutes to pass most benchmark runs without throttling. It was like clock work once I went in and looked at it so In my eyes that's a conscious decision made by AMD to try and mislead the gaming public.   


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#11 IVIYTH0S

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 03:13 PM

I understand the reasons for quiet mode and uber mode but the reality is that most people will just slap the card into the system and load the drivers and be underwhelmed. What was the overall worst part of the deal is that it seems the clock speed was held high for about 90 seconds to 2 minutes to pass most benchmark runs without throttling. It was like clock work once I went in and looked at it so In my eyes that's a conscious decision made by AMD to try and mislead the gaming public.

That's crummy of them, as much as I like the 290s....do I like a lie?

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#12 Braegnok

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 04:07 PM

So on the R9 290 there are not two BIOS modes,.. there is no Quiet mode and no Uber mode,.. only one default fan percentage setting.

 

And only the 290X has two modes,. now I see they needed to change the default performance profile of the 290 and keep it from throttling or dynamically changing below the cap of 947MHz due to temp/power not being ideal.

 

Nvidia needs some 20% performance driver updates. :lol:


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