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El Quintron
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Preferred ATI/AMD GPU brands

I got an offer on my GTX 670 that's almost too good to refuse, and I'm considering an HD 7970 as a replacement.

Seeing as EVGA doesn't make these, I'm wondering which brands you would recommend.

Cheers,
EQ
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BlitzenZeus
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Sapphire is generally considered the better maker of amd gpu cards.


El Quintron
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said by BlitzenZeus:

Sapphire is generally considered the better maker of amd gpu cards.

I was looking at a Sapphire... but I heard some pretty scary stuff about their customer service. Anyone know if it improved lately?

EQ
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Octavean
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reply to El Quintron
For what its worth,.....

I have a Sapphire HD 3470 fanless card that was OK for a while there before it started freezing up the dedicated Media Center system it was installed in. I replaced it with an old eVGA 9500GT. I have basically been satisfied with Sapphire cards in the past.

I have an XFX HD 6870 that's running fine, although, I may replace it with a new GTX 670 of which I just paid ~$319.99. There was a $40 rebate that brings the price down to ~$280 though and two free games valued at ~$50 each.

How much did you sell your GTX 670 for?


El Quintron
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said by Octavean:

How much did you sell your GTX 670 for?

Not sold yet, but the I'm getting an offer for $325.

The guy who's making the offer bought his other one at the same time as mine and want to do SLI.
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El Quintron
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reply to El Quintron
I'm in unfamiliar territory with ATI, although some of the manufacturers are the same as Nvidia (Asus, MSI, Gigabyte) I could theoretically just get an Asus ATI card, what about them?
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me1212

join:2008-11-20
Pleasant Hill, MO
I've never used an asus card, but ym gigabyte 7950 is a wonderful card. Oc'd to 1005 mhz right now, plays everything at high-max settings at wonderful frame rates.


El Quintron
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said by me1212:

I've never used an asus card, but ym gigabyte 7950 is a wonderful card. Oc'd to 1005 mhz right now, plays everything at high-max settings at wonderful frame rates.

That sounds awesome
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Krisnatharok
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reply to El Quintron
Stay away from the budget brands, just like you would on the Nvidia side (PNY, HIS, Zotac, etc.).

You can't go wrong with ASUS, MSI, or Sapphire (although I have also heard bad things about Sapphire's customer service).

I had a Sapphire 4870 die on me after 2ish years--I RMA'd it and got it replaced with no fuss and it only took about 10 days.

That's my only experience with Sapphire customer service.

I currently own a Sapphire 7970 Vapor-X, which is probably the best 7970 you can buy right now.

It is worth waiting for this thing to come in-stock: »www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ··· 14202001

Please note it is almost a 2.5 slot card.
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El Quintron
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said by Krisnatharok:

Stay away from the budget brands, just like you would on the Nvidia side (PNY, HIS, Zotac, etc.).

You can't go wrong with ASUS, MSI, or Sapphire (although I have also heard bad things about Sapphire's customer service).

I had a Sapphire 4870 die on me after 2ish years--I RMA'd it and got it replaced with no fuss and it only took about 10 days.

That's my only experience with Sapphire customer service.

OK that's a much better than what I heard.

said by Krisnatharok:

I currently own a Sapphire 7970 Vapor-X, which is probably the best 7970 you can buy right now.

It is worth waiting for this thing to come in-stock: »www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ··· 14202001

Please note it is almost a 2.5 slot card.

I was actually looking into this, after you posted it into the new hardware thread, it seems obscenely powerful to say the least, and if my buddy does take the GTX 670, I'll be getting $325, so that would bring the cost of it down significantly as well.

Do you think the 6GB edition is worth the extra cash?
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Krisnatharok
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said by El Quintron:

Do you think the 6GB edition is worth the extra cash?

If there is a chance you will ever go to multiple monitors, yes; otherwise, no. I am kicking myself for picking up the 3GB one.
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El Quintron
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said by Krisnatharok:

said by El Quintron:

Do you think the 6GB edition is worth the extra cash?

If there is a chance you will ever go to multiple monitors, yes; otherwise, no. I am kicking myself for picking up the 3GB one.

Tough call, I just ditched my multiple monitor setup for a single 1440p IPS, might be worth getting the 6GB for future proofing.
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Octavean
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Well as you may have heard before, a monitor upgrade is only half an upgrade and the other way around as well (video card upgrade).

So I guess those new HP zr2740w monitors were just itching for something a little more powerful,....

The last time I looked at benchmarks the HD 7970 was a great performer, outperforming the GTX 670 quite handily as well as factory OCed versions. The GTX 670 was more a contender for the HD 6950. So you're certainly stepping up.

Toss in the 6GB version and,......wow,.....


El Quintron
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said by Octavean:

Well as you may have heard before, a monitor upgrade is only half an upgrade and the other way around as well (video card upgrade).

The difference between the 23" panels and the 27" 1440p is very stark. I love the new monitor...
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Octavean
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Me too I really like 2560x1440 27" monitors but I also like 1920x1080 27" monitors as well.

For games you'll need even more GPU power when you up the resolution like that, unless you want to lower the resolution on your monitor,.....which wouldn't be great,....


Kosh
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reply to El Quintron
I know some people look down on them, but my current AMD card by Diamond (7770 Gigahertz editon) has been really reliable. I also like Asus and Sapphire.

And as much as I like MSI, it seems like I saw a lot of refurbed MSI's when I was researching video card options a few months ago (might indicate some quality issues?). YMMV.
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n_w95482
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join:2005-08-03
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reply to El Quintron
Of my recent AMD GPU experience, I've used four brands: Sapphire (7970), MSI (6970), Asus (6570), and XFX (6570). Of those, so far I've only dealt with MSI on RMAs. They were relatively quick and painless to get the ball rolling, but the replacement items were questionable in quality. The first 6970 replacement had a horribly spastic/loud fan (video), and the second one had tons of thermal paste layered on a thermal pad, causing load temperatures near 100 C (cleaning and fresh paste fixed it). The original card also had a backplate and a dual BIOS switch, neither of the refurb replacements had those. The second replacement did look spotless, and didn't have any stupid decals on it (yay!). Just a big black/red brick .

Based on that, I would be hesitant to recommend MSI. I wish (or maybe not? ) that I had some experience with the other companies on that topic, but oh well. The XFX 6570 felt lower in quality than the Asus, but it's working fine so far (in a client's PC) so I'm neutral on that for now.

Definitely check the warranty policy on whichever brands interest you. Some require registration within a month to activate the warranty, most don't transfer when sold to someone else, etc.
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El Quintron
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said by n_w95482:

Definitely check the warranty policy on whichever brands interest you. Some require registration within a month to activate the warranty, most don't transfer when sold to someone else, etc.

Good to know I've always went Asus or EVGA, and have had RMAs with both. If I go Sapphire (which is the other brand I'm thinking about) I'll make sure to check what's what with them as well.
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Cthen
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reply to El Quintron
XFX is another good name to look at. I chose them last time around for both of my 6970's for a much longer warranty over most other brands.
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El Quintron
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1 edit
said by Cthen:

XFX is another good name to look at. I chose them last time around for both of my 6970's for a much longer warranty over most other brands.

How long if you mind my asking?

*don't mind my asking* something about posting before coffee.


Krisnatharok
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said by Cthen:

XFX is another good name to look at. I chose them last time around for both of my 6970's for a much longer warranty over most other brands.

I've heard their customer service is some of the worst however. YMMV.

Just read some of the "worst experiences" of all the different brands to get a bit of a baseline for what you could expect.
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Cthen
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reply to El Quintron
said by El Quintron:

said by Cthen:

XFX is another good name to look at. I chose them last time around for both of my 6970's for a much longer warranty over most other brands.

How long if you mind my asking?

*don't mind my asking* something about posting before coffee.

Lifetime. I'm not sure about their support as I haven't had to use support for any brand of my cards. A lot of times the warranty was over with other brands before I even had a chance to use it. I'm also a modder so having parts laying around or knowing where to get parts is no big deal, it just kinda got old dealing with it.

So far I have been running the 2 6970's together for a year with no issues under win 7 64bit. Typical usage is gaming on this machine with sometimes idling in TF2 while playing another game.
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