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Old May 7, 2011, 09:46 PM
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Default Top GPU for under 300?

Hi guys I wanted to consult the community before I started looking into a new GPU for myself. I plan on spending 300 or less for this new GPU. The last time I was actively in the O/C scene and how badly ATI was merking Nvidia was when the 4XXX series cards just came out. At this time I bought 1 4850 and latter it became a pair of 4850's. So throw me your opinions and FYI's about all the nitty gritty info out there (meaning little david's that o/c into a Goliath).

As always I appreciate you taking your time to educate me.

Thanks guys.
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Old May 7, 2011, 10:01 PM
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If you are looking for new, a 570 or a 6950 can both be had for $299 right now at NCIX.

I've had great luck OCing ATI cards, and moderate to poor success OCing Nvidia cards. Kinda seems to me like Nvidia pushes their hardware a bit more with the factory settings, while ATI is a bit ore conservative in their clocks. However, ATI's drivers generally pale in comparison to Nvidia's.
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Old May 7, 2011, 10:08 PM
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2x4850 isn't all that bad, wondering what the rest of your comp is, maybe it's time for a cpu upgrade? I'm sitting on a gtx280 waiting for gtx 6xx series to hit sometime late summer/fall then the gtx 580 should drop low enough for me to blow $3xx (it's already showing drops now).
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Old May 8, 2011, 01:33 AM
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MSI HD 6950 2GB Twin Frozr III (Highest overclock out of box)
HIS HD 6950 2GB IceQ Turbo (Bios overclocked)
Asus HD 6950 2GB Direct CUII

I'd focus on these and surf the net for reviews. If you play mostly DX9 (Blackops, Crysis 2 etc.) at resolution 1920x1200 or 1080, then you might want the more expensive GTX 570, which has more power but less RAM.
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Old May 8, 2011, 01:39 AM
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^ Agree although I would pic ka reference designed 6950 and unlock the shaders on it. It should perform pretty similar to a 6970 then.
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Old May 8, 2011, 05:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asad_A203 View Post
^ Agree although I would pic ka reference designed 6950 and unlock the shaders on it. It should perform pretty similar to a 6970 then.
Yes, if you want the most bang for your buck under $300, then get a reference 2g radeon 6950. The bios can be unlocked in reference cards so that it becomes a 6970. I've known people who easily unlocked both an HIS card and a Sapphire card;

Newegg.ca - HIS H695F2G2M Radeon HD 6950 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

Newegg.ca - SAPPHIRE 100312SR Radeon HD 6950 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

I would lean toward the Sapphire though, but that's just my brand preference in Radeon cards. Plus the Sapphire, if you can find one, has a dual bios,so even if for some unlikely reason (as its very easy to unlock to a 6970) you toated your bios, they have the back up bios which can be used to boot the card.
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Old May 8, 2011, 11:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upcoast604 View Post
2x4850 isn't all that bad, wondering what the rest of your comp is, maybe it's time for a cpu upgrade? I'm sitting on a gtx280 waiting for gtx 6xx series to hit sometime late summer/fall then the gtx 580 should drop low enough for me to blow $3xx (it's already showing drops now).
My setup is the following 2x4850, E8400, segate 500gig, mushkin 800mhz 4x2gig low latency(dont remember the numbers), Corsair TX 750watt psu, Rampage Formula mobo, Thermalright ultra 120 extream, extream fidelity card by creative and its all in a Antech Twelve Hundred case.
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Old May 8, 2011, 11:38 AM
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So im getting the feeling that 6950 2gig is the way to go? Are all 6950's 2gig unlock-able to 6970 or only select few cards buy certain manufactures?
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Old May 8, 2011, 11:45 AM
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for multi monitor yes. for single,the 1 giger will be fine as well

reference should unlock painlessly. use the 6950 mod,not the 6970. up the clocks later if its cool.
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Old May 8, 2011, 11:57 AM
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Not all are unlockable. The MSI Twin Frozr, for example, is not unlockable. The reference design cards are the easiest and most trouble free at unlocking, like the 2 cards I linked above.
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