did i screw up?

Discussion in 'Videocards - AMD Radeon' started by shadow42489, Jun 10, 2010.

  1. shadow42489

    shadow42489 Active Member

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    Hi Guru's, I recently bought 2x Sapphire Vapor-x 5870 1gbddr5 cards....but ive been thinking...maybe i made a huge mistake and should have gotten 1 5970 4gb card. just the thought of this makes me nauseous as i hate to think i picked the wrong option...:puke2: what do you all think?
     
  2. mmsandi

    mmsandi Master Guru

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    what resolution r u playin' at?
     
  3. shadow42489

    shadow42489 Active Member

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    usually the max i can. i haven't had any issues yet but i'm thinking ahead and i may have just dropped almost a grand on cards that wont be able to handle more memory intensive games.
     
  4. mmsandi

    mmsandi Master Guru

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    i meant what is u'r monitor resolution ..if it's 1920, 2x 5870 is a good choice cause at that res no game uses more then 1gb vram, and if it's more then hd res and plenty of aa then u'd need 2 gb
     

  5. shadow42489

    shadow42489 Active Member

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    then i shouldn't have to worry much then....my monitor doesn't even go that high cause its a piece of crap. and how does crossfire manage memory, im new to the whole dual gpu thing. does crossfire make use of the vram on both cards or just one?
     
  6. Quicks

    Quicks Master Guru

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    Well if you had the money I think the 4gb 5970 would have been a better choice for future proof. here is a review.
    Sapphire Radeon HD 5970 4GB Toxic Review UK Price (as reviewed): £900+ (inc. VAT) MSRP
    US Price (as reviewed): $1099 (exc.Tax) MSRP

    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/graphics/2010/05/11/sapphire/1
     
  7. shadow42489

    shadow42489 Active Member

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    Thats what I was afraid of Quicks, and i spent almost, maybe $100 less on the dual 5870s so i think i definitely should have gotten the 5970 4gb
     
  8. faust1200

    faust1200 Member Guru

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    Considering you run a low resolution, 1 5870 would probably be plenty. I believe 2 5870's yields more GPU performance than a 5970. The GPU's in the 5970 are downlocked slightly to meet power limitations. In crossfire you can only use the 1gb VRAM but since you're not running a high resolution, 1gb is more than enough. I run 1920x1200 and 1 5870 runs great for me. IMHO, unless you're running above 1920x1200 you don't need more than one 5870, especially with your hexacore.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2010
  9. Darren Hodgson

    Darren Hodgson Ancient Guru

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    The reviews I've seen of the 2 GB HD 5870s only show an improvement over the 1 GB versions because they're clocked higher and don't seem to to show that the extra 1 GB of memory makes any difference at all, even with games at 2560x1600! Obviously, if you want to use 8xAA at 2560x1600 and enable triple buffering then 2 GB will no doubt prove useful plus if you want to use EyeFinity it's handy for that too.

    I was a bit like the original poster but in my case I was going to buy the GTX 480 because it had 1.5 GB of memory and I prefer to game with v-sync on and triple buffering enabled. I'd seen some games on my GTX 280 hit 900 MB usage when monitored with EVGA Precision's OSD so my priority was to buy a card with more than 1 GB for future-proofing. However, when I read the reviews of the GTX 480 I was put off by the high temps, noise and power requirements not to mention the ridiculous price here in the UK so opted for the better value HD 5870 even though it only had 1 GB.

    I play games at 1920x1200 with either 4x or 8x AA and so far I've not experienced any major hitching/juddering as a result of running games on max. settings. I even have triple buffering enabled. Maybe 1.5 and 2 GB cards will be useful in a year to 18 months time but most PC games are console ports (even the forthcoming Crysis 2 is coded for the 360 and PS3!) which were designed to run with just 512 MB of RAM in total so I suspect that unless I start gaming on multiple screens that 2 GB would just be a waste for me. It's always nice to have too much memory but I don't feel I need 2 GB cards now.
     
  10. Darren Hodgson

    Darren Hodgson Ancient Guru

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    The memory isn't pooled. Each GPU only has access to its own framebufffer not the total of both. In other words a standard 2 GB HD 5970 is a card with two GPUs that each has access to a 1 GB framebuffer. A 4 GB HD 5970 has two GPUS that each access a 2 GB framebuffer.
     

  11. Lane

    Lane Ancient Guru

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    No no lol, the only effect you see there compared to standard 5970 is mostly due to the speed of the cores..... a standard 5970 run @725mhz ( if im right) the new 5970 run @ 900 ( depend the version from Sapphire etc ) ... 2x 5870 standard run @ 850 ..... and i m not really sure the 5970 @900mhz beat completely 2x 5870 @ 850-875mhz ... ( and you can OC them to 900 without problem anyway .. ) It's really sad they have not put 2x 5870 in this test for compare ....

    Now.. offcourse the 2 or 4go can have an impact, on some specific games, and / or if you run a 2560x1600+ monitor .....
    if the 5970 4go is cheaper or with similar price of 2x5870, i will maybe jump on it... if not, i don't think it worth it... ( anyway a good thing to think about: 2x gpu = 2 waterblocks or air cooler )

    Last question is to know if you are only playing or OC ...., actually i think whatever you choose 2x 5870 or 1 5970@900mhz ( 2 or 4), the result will be quite similar .... But if it was between a standard 5970 2go and 2x 5870, the choice will be offcourse more easy ....
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2010
  12. Knutselmaaster

    Knutselmaaster Active Member

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    So why in hell do you spend that much on videocards if your display can't even give you good image quality?
     
  13. slickric21

    slickric21 Ancient Guru

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    I've got a 2Gb 5870 Vapor-X as well as the 480 in my sig.

    2Gb of Vram is only useful at the moment in Crysis/Warhead and Metro as far as i can see at 1920x1080, they run nice and smooth even at relatively low fps.
    (BC2 also runs smoother but I suspect its drivers not the vram as its not a gpu intensive game more cpu).
    This is in comparison to my 480 - which runs all these games at higher fps but doens't feel as smooth.
    Its particulary noticable in the Crysis games. At 1920x1080,64Bit,Dx10 Enthusiast x4 AA, here are the benchmarks for Warhead
    2Gb Vapor-X @ 850/1200mhz
    Code:
    //////////// Summary \\\\\\\\\\\\\
    
    06/04/2010 11:00:44 - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium   
    
    DirectX 10 ENTHUSIAST 2X @ Map: ambush @ 0 1920 x 1080 AA 4x 
    ==> Framerate [ Min: 23.35 Max: 43.35 Avg: 34.57 ]
    GTX 480
    Code:
    //////////// Summary \\\\\\\\\\\\\
    
    06/09/2010 10:25:26 - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium   
    
    DirectX 10 ENTHUSIAST 2X @ Map: ambush @ 0 1920 x 1080 AA 4x 
    ==> Framerate [ Min: 26.69 Max: 42.55 Avg: 35.62 ]
    As you can see the GTX480 is faster in min frames and average frames so you'd think it'd be smoother in gamplay, but for some reason the 2Gb 5870 is.
    Its particulary noticeable when your standing on the spot spin round fast using the mouse. With the 480 theres some mouse lag sometimes, with the 2Gb 5870 none...ever. The Fps is still higher on the 480 at the time though.
    Why does this happen ????
    (I should note the game is installed on a 60Gb OCZ Vertex SSD so don't think its harddrive access being the problem ;) )
    I can only conclude if it isn't drivers, its the extra Vram which is helping out.

    Which makes sense.... of course extra vram won't improve fps, in doesn't increase the speed or computation power of the card does it, its just a frame buffer.

    I'd love to be able to test a bog standard 1gb 5870 though to see if its as smooth.

    Having said all this I wouldn't have got a 2Gb card unless they were much cheaper theres no way they are worth the premium some retailers are selling em at.
    I got lucky and picked up my 2gB Vapor-x a few weeks back for £352 on special offer (which in the Uk is the same price as the 1gb Vapor-x's).

    Don't ask me why i've got a 480 aswell, its a long painfull story..... but I won't have it for much longer
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2010
  14. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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    Some more games that can use more than 1GB video ram at 1920x1080 res are:
    GTA IV - can use about 1.3GB without any mods!
    Oblivion/Fallout 3 with hi-res packs.

    Also Batman AA if you run highest level PhysX and the highest AA mode on a GTX260 (has only 897MB ram).
    I imagine other PhysX games might fall foul of this too.

    With higher res and/or use of buffering, you might be able to get more games to fill 1GB.
     
  15. Decane

    Decane Ancient Guru

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    A 2GB card at this day and age is the way to go, IMO. No game at vanilla settings (aside from GTA IV) uses that much, but slap on a couple of high-res texture mods to games like Fallout 3, Oblivion, S.T.A.L.K.E.R., etc. and watch your VRAM get filled up, even beyond 1GB. If I could go back in time to when I was buying myself an HD4870, I would definitely pay the extra 20€ for another 512MB. If I were buying now, I would settle for nothing less than 2GB of VRAM. So yes, I think you made a mistake buying two 1GB cards with only 1GB of VRAM (effectively).
     

  16. shadow42489

    shadow42489 Active Member

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    GPU:
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    So then the question looming is this: should i sell the 5870's now and replace them with 1 2gb 5870? or should i sell them now, save up a little and grab the 5970 4gb? or should i just stick with what i have?
     
  17. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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    If you can survive with a few settings turned down on those games that use more memory, stick with the cards you have.
    By the time you next upgrade there may be a larger need for more memory.

    I wanted 2GB cards as well but tbh theres no real issue except psychological.
     
  18. Knutselmaaster

    Knutselmaaster Active Member

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    Buy a decent screen first bro, if you find that you run into a memory shortage after that you can always change cards.
     
  19. shadow42489

    shadow42489 Active Member

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    hahaha i saw this reply coming a mile away...and i think you're right. I should stop worrying so much about vram and worry more about getting use out of my current cards.
     
  20. AlvinMaker

    AlvinMaker Member Guru

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    Good chpoice. :)

    Two 5870s on a monitor lower than 1920 are going to SCREAM. My 2 5870 2GBs arrive today, which I ordered because I am an Eyefinity "addict" and run 5040x1050, and want to not have to crank down the detail. (I had a single 5970 which I just took out- at 1680x1050 it tore through EVERYTHING...and actually, that wasn't the bottleneck, as cranking res/adding AA didn't immediately effect performance in some games until much higher).

    Anyways, good luck, enjoy your cards, and save for a nice 30" monitor (or two more smaller ones for Eyefinity... :nerd: )
     

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