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Old June 2, 2012, 08:42 PM
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Question Upgrade Questions

I'm looking to pick up a Dell Ultrasharp U2711 27in (2560x1440) in the next couple of days and I'm wanting to make sure that I can play recent titles (BF3, D3, etc.) at that resolution with maxed settings.

Currently I'm running the following:

Mobo:
ASUS Maximus IV Gene-Z

CPU:
Intel Core i7 2600K

Memory:
Patriot Viper Extreme 16GB 1866MHZ PC3-15000 9-11-9-27

Video:
ASUS GTX 580 ROG Matrix Platinum

HDD:
2 x OCZ Vertex 3 MAX IOPS 240GB
2 x Seagate 1TB SATA3 Barracuda 7200 RPM (Raid)

PSU:
Corsair HX750W

I'm wondering what will yield the best results, just a straight video card upgrade, and if so, which? Or something more involved like cpu/mobo/gpu etc? I don't mind having to upgrade or rebuild in a year's time, but would prefer this upgrade to at least last until the end of 2012.

From the benchmarks I've been reading, it looks like I could do a single GTX 670 and achieve near 60 FPS (though I'm not sure how consistent that is) in BF3, which would be ideal, though I'm not sure how much performance I lose not using a PCIE3 mobo? If anyone has any experience or is running a 2560x1440 display for gaming I'd appreciate any advice or tips!

Cost doesn't matter, I'll spend what it takes to get the performance I'd like, though I'd prefer not to overspend either.
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Old June 2, 2012, 09:36 PM
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Thats a reallyy good setup you have there man I wouldn't change anything especially if its just 1 monitor. A 670 should be faster but IMHO i dont see a need for it
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Old June 2, 2012, 10:19 PM
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Really, I think your looking at around a 45fps average with everything max'd out on a 580. (ish, guesstimate)

A single 670 or 680 will boost you but not really by all that much.. My suggestion is try before you buy..
If the 580 is enough.. well then it's enough.. Turning down a couple of settings may have a very small visual impact but may give you the extra frames your looking for.

If you still fancy an upgrade at that point you have a few options.. 1 is find and buy another 580 (second hand so that you save some more)
Though with the tripple cooler and if you want to try and match the brand and version of the card too (any 580 will work but at the lower cards speed)
you may be a little short on room depending on your case..

Second option is to obviously replace the card..

If money isn't a problem then a 690 is a hellofa card.. someone reported seeing one for $650.. but I think that is a 1 time thing..
a 670 or 680 will be better... but not the point that they are worth the money..
(I just went from a 560ti to a 670.. nice step up... If I was on a 570 I wouldn't be happy with the spend to performance gain)

The rest of your rig is good for about 3 years.. No game will use the power provided by a 2600k till then and then it will be minimal gains.
If you do change your card for any of the options above and end up with sli'd 580/670/680 or a 690.. I think you'll be good all round for easily 3 years and decent for 5..

as for PCI-e 3... not even a 690 uses enough bandwidth to limit the card on pci-e 2.. you don't even have to start thinking about this till you look at 3x 680's or 2 x 690's or higher
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Old June 6, 2012, 02:15 AM
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Thanks for the replies and advice. I picked up the display earlier today, in battlefield i'm averaging between 35-40 FPS, diablo 3 seemed to be pretty solid around 50 most of the time.

But there are frequent moments in BF3 particularly where I'll drop to 19-25 fps and sometimes as low as 12 in heavy action in open areas, which is super unacceptable for me, I tried messing with taking some stuff off ultra, but I noticed enough of a difference that it bothered me.

As I have a ROG Matrix Platinum, I'm going to try giving it a decent O/C and see how that goes before deciding to invest in something like a 680 or 690, I do want nice smooth consistent framerates above 50 if possible, which may mean I have to end up upgrading, but we shall see how much I can squeeze out of this setup before then.

Last edited by Devious; June 6, 2012 at 02:49 AM.
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Old June 8, 2012, 01:42 AM
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Devious,

I think Dzzope pretty much summed it up. You can either pair up another Gtx 580 to do SLI but looking at your power supply at 750W, i don't think that is a great option as you'll need to upgrade your power supply also which means more money.

If you are looking for framerates above 50, then you'll need to upgrade to a more powerful video card. The rest of your set up with the 2600K, which I have also, will still hold its ground for your game play requirements on your 27" and one good thing about the newer cards is that they use less watts and give much more performance.

Last edited by michaelubc; June 8, 2012 at 01:51 AM.
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Old June 8, 2012, 04:44 AM
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For BF3 turn msaa off or down a few notches, and you should see a good jump in FPS. Reviews I have read show post processing as giving nearly all the results of msaa with little effect on FPS. If it is still and issue try turning HBAO/SSAO off. Check your vram usage in game using something like msi afterburner. Huge fps spike could be an issue with maxing out vram (that would also be solved by dropping msaa/hbao as they use substantial memory, especially hbao). If I was you I wouldn't bother upgrading yet, but if you have the cash then go for a 670/680.
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Old June 8, 2012, 06:45 PM
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Picking up a 680 tomorrow, hopefully should see the gains I'm wanting. I'm a bit of GFX whore I do notice the differences when I drop MSAA and definitely notice when I turn HBAO/SSAO off, so that's unacceptable.

I'll end up picking up a second 680 if I'm still seeing unacceptable results, though most benchmarks seem to show I should be happy with a single 680.
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Old June 9, 2012, 05:14 AM
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If you have the cash, then go for it. From techpowerup:

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Away from home light Gamer: Acer Aspire 15.6", A8-3500m undervolt and OC to 2Ghz, 2x4gb Corsair Vengeance, Crucial M500 240gb
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Old June 10, 2012, 10:37 PM
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Picked up the 680 on the weekend (Saturday) and it's been pretty solid so far. Bond007's chart is essentially dead on. I grabbed a EVGA 680 SC Signature and it's averaging between 45-48 FPS in BF3, 55 in Diablo 3, and I haven't had a chance to test anything else yet, but this seems to be giving me the results I'm wanting.

Now that I pulled out the ASUS Matrix 580 I had though, I have this empty slot below the 680 that just looks very lonely, I may just need another 680...
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