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Possible Graphics Card Upgrade (Help)

EvilMixEvilMix Member Posts: 251

Hey guys, posted here before, built a PC a few months with the help of you awesome members, so I'm coming back and I'm thinking about upgrading my graphics card some time soon. Here are my current PC specs that I know off the top of my head.

i5-3570k Processor, 16gb of ram, GTX 560, 800W power supply, windows 7, don't know the motherboard, but could check if needed. So ya, I'm just trying to find out if I should upgrade my video card soon, and is it worth it? Will the $200-400 I'm looking to spend to upgrade actually make much of a difference? Let me know your ideas.

P.S. I'm also looking for a 1tb HDD if any of you know of a trust worthy one I should go with, I'm not really good with building PCs so let me know that as well. Thanks for the suggestions guys, you're great!


  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,234

    Exactly what power supply do you have, and what case?

    The nearest modern equivalent to a GeForce GTX 650 is perhaps a Radeon HD 7790.  I'd generally advise against upgrading unless you double the performance of your old card.  That would put you roughly into Radeon HD 7950 or GeForce GTX 670 territory, so if you're going to upgrade, you should plan on spending $300+.

  • ShakyMoShakyMo Member CommonPosts: 7,207
    The newer 7950 BOOST cards give the best pixel per buck at the high end - e.g. the his iceq cards (but asus, sapphire etc.. also make boost versions). These are factory clocked with vendor coolers fitted, they outbench the 670gtx and cost less than the 660ti (well here in the UK anyway)

    Decent hard disks would be likes of seagate or Samsung,

    Like quiz says only upgrade your gpu if you will really really notice the difference. Which puts you in 660gtx / 7870 territory at least.

    The good news is, you won't need a new power supply with any single card setup.
  • ShakyMoShakyMo Member CommonPosts: 7,207
    Probably won't need a new psu.

    The new gfx cards are a bit more power efficient than the old generation, so you will probably be ok power wise. You might have issues with needing two rails and what have you. Don't know about the 670 but the 7950, 7970 and 680 need two power rails.
  • jdnewelljdnewell Member UncommonPosts: 2,237
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814202026  $289 after the MIR. That would be worth the upgrade over the 560 IMO
  • EvilMixEvilMix Member Posts: 251

    Hey everyone, appreciate the help as always, so I dug through my email and found exactly what's in my PC.

    Intel Core i5 3570K Unlocked Quad Core Processor LGA1155 3.4GHZ Ivy Bridge 6MB Retail

    MSI Z77A-GD65 ATX LGA1155 Z77 DDR3 3PCI-E16 4PCI-E1 SATA3 DVI HDMI VGA DX11 USB3.0 Motherboard

    Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus Direct Touch 4 Heatpipe Heatsink AM2 AM3 LGA1366 LGA1155 LGA1156 120mm

    Antec HCG-620M 620W ATX12V Modular SINGLE-RAIL 48A 80PLUS Bronze 135mm Fan Active PFC Power Supply (Thought it was 800W, guess it's 620W.)

    Mushkin Enhanced Blackline Frostbyte 16GB 2X8GB PC3-12800 DDR3-1600 CL10 Dual Channel Memory Kit

    Corsair Carbide Series 300R Black Gaming Case ATX 3X5.25 4X3.5 Front USB Audio No PSU


    So that's everything in my PC, from the looks of it, you guys are suggesting a GTX 670? I'd prefer to stick with Nvidia unless there's a different card that's much better than what they're releasing. My budget is around $200-400 like I said, but could spend a little more if it's a noticeable upgrade between cards or something. Thanks again!

    As for a 1tb HDD, would any work or do I need to look for something specific?



  • jdnewelljdnewell Member UncommonPosts: 2,237

    A 670 is going to pretty much eat your entire $400 budget.

    You can get a 7950 and a 1tb HDD for close to what a single 670 is going to cost.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822236339 and the card linked earlier

  • EvilMixEvilMix Member Posts: 251
    According to this site: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/358881-33-radeon-7970 the GTX 590 is better than all of them except for the 690, is that true? o_o
  • romelloromello Member Posts: 34

    all i did was take my dell studio xps 8100 with quad core & replace the power supply and & put in a gigagbyte gtx 560 (non TI) OC with dual windforce cooling (sale 140$)


    havent had any problems since i could tweak most games performance wise

    hallo ~_~

  • EvilMixEvilMix Member Posts: 251

    Yeah I'm using the 560 too, it's great for sure but I have some money to spend and I'd prefer to be able to play most games 60 FPS on highest settings if possible.


    Edit: Was maybe looking at this too http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130785, would my power supply be able to run that though?

  • ShakyMoShakyMo Member CommonPosts: 7,207
    Gtx 590 is two gtx580s in sli

    Now for games that work with sli like fps and stuff yeah you will have awesome graphics (but need a lot of power)

    For games with crappy sli support, e.g. mmos, most of the time you will have to disable one of its internal cards to get it to work, which means your then rocking a single 580 for double the price.
  • ShakyMoShakyMo Member CommonPosts: 7,207

    The newer 7950s with boost ARE better than the 670 and they cost less money than the 660ti.

    On benchmarks the 670gtx typically performs somewhere between the normal 7950 and the 7950s with boost. The 7950 also overclocks like a bastard, its basicly a lower bin 7970, if you get lucky, you can clock it right upto 7970 speeds.

    Now some engines work better with nvidia, some work better with amd, the really good engines don't care. But at that level of performance it doesn't matter, it matters more with mud range cards. When your talking 7950s and 670s your looking at a difference of say 90fps vs 85fps which doesn't matter as most monitors can only refresh at 60fps.

    It depends what mmos you play though.

    Tsw and Aoc are very bad with AMD
    Swtor is bad with nvidia
    Ps2 (and therefore eqn) performs slightly better on AMD.
    Gw2 doesn't care etc.

    As for hardware reliability, well with both chipsets it depends on the card manufacturer.

    E.g. asus are rock solid cards with both chipsets.
    His are great AMD cards
    Evga are great nvidia cards
    Gigabyte and sapphire also make reliable cards.

    At the sort of price level you are talking the HIS iceq 7950 is brilliant. (I have a simmilar sapphire card, because it was on offer, but its not as quiet)

    Now if you were talking at a higher price point, I would go the 680gtx over the 7970. But at the "fairly high end", 7950 is very good pixel per buck.

    If you must go nvidia, get the 670gtx though. The 660ti is very bad value for money.
  • EvilMixEvilMix Member Posts: 251

    Cool, well it looks like I know which card I'm getting (7950), looking at all my PC specs, would it be able to run it?

    Edit: 1 more question, would it be worth just getting the 7950 or is the 7970 a better option? I have the money to spend, I just want to get the best for my $

  • jdnewelljdnewell Member UncommonPosts: 2,237
    Originally posted by EvilMix

    Cool, well it looks like I know which card I'm getting (7950), looking at all my PC specs, would it be able to run it?

    Edit: 1 more question, would it be worth just getting the 7950 or is the 7970 a better option? I have the money to spend, I just want to get the best for my $

    If you have the budget get a 7970 Ghz edition, which will run you around $400 roughly, depending on whats on sale, brand, ect.

    Something like this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814202001 

    $439 after rebate and comes with 4 free games. And yes your psu should be able to handle it.

  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,234

    So long as you don't get carried away with a ridiculous overclock, any single-GPU video card that you want to run should be fine with your current system.

    Definitely don't get a GeForce GTX 590.  That's two GF110 chips in SLI, not a single GPU card, so synthetics that scale flawlessly with SLI will greatly exaggerate the card's gaming prowess.  It's also an awful card, as it's unsafe even at stock speeds with an excellent case and power supply.  The existence of the card was a failed publicity stunt, and several of the cards didn't even survive the review process.

    Don't get a 4 GB version of a GeForce GTX 670, either.  Or at least, don't pay $450 for one.  If you want more than 2 GB of video memory, then get a 3 GB version of a Radeon HD 7950 or 7970, since you can get those without paying outlandish prices for low-volume parts.

    Really, though, you could justify buying a Radeon HD 7950 or 7970 or a GeForce GTX 670 and sticking it in your current system.

  • ShakyMoShakyMo Member CommonPosts: 7,207
    If you have lots of cash, I would look at the 680gtx

    Depends how much more it costs than other high end cards though.

    It is the best card though. It's just whether the price is with it for what you get over a 670gtx or a 79x0.

    Regardless, you won't be able to play every game at absolute maximum settings. Really heavy games like crisis 3 and metro last light are scaled so they can run on tech available in 5 years time, and also as a marketing gimmick / to keep the game alive for years as its constantly used in bench tests. You can't even run crisis 1 with everything tuned to max on any single card setup.

    Mmos though, all 4 of them cards will play every single mmo today maxed out at a solid framerate.
  • tinywulftinywulf Member Posts: 106

    EVilMix all of this discussion is moot unless we know what kind of display or multiple displays you plan on driving.


    I actually am running a GTX590 and have never had problems cooling it, but then again I have been self building and overclocking for years.

  • BenthonBenthon Member Posts: 2,069

    I would avoid the GTX 680 even if you have the cash. Unless you're looking for a 55W lower power/heat envelope than the 7970 (such as an ITX build on an SFX power supply), the 7970 is superior in a majority of games and is $50 cheaper. 

    The 7950 will give you plenty of headroom for games at 1920x1080 resolution, as the stock cards have 3GB of video memory available which will be more than enough. There really isn't reason to go higher than that at your resolution, which I'm assuming you have since you probably don't own an $500+ monitor.


    If you really prefer Nvidia, the 670 is the logical choice for the highest end. The 680 is again, just a waste. 

    He who keeps his cool best wins.

  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,234
    Originally posted by tinywulf

    I actually am running a GTX590 and have never had problems cooling it, but then again I have been self building and overclocking for years.

    How do you know that you haven't had any problems cooling it?  Have you tried measuring the VRM temperatures?  That's what fried on the cards that didn't survive the review, not the GPUs.

    Unless either you took off the stock cooler in favor of a waterblock, have never played anything that pushed the card very hard, or have the ambient temperature in your case far below what most would consider room temperature, you've had more trouble with cooling the card than you think.

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