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Customer Discussions > Video Games forum

Looking to buy a new PC graphics card? Techspot compared all the best ones at every price range.

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Showing 1-14 of 14 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 28, 2012, 1:28:41 PM PST
Lots of graphs at the link if you're looking for a new GPU. There is also a "best GPU for each price range" chart in the middle.

Final Thoughts
Starting at the bottom of the food chain we have the sub-$150 battle that takes place primarily between the GeForce GTX 650 Ti and Radeon HD 7770. The GeForce GTX 650 Ti is the more expensive of the two retailing for around $150, while the Radeon HD 7770 costs about $130.

At 1680x1050, which is a typical resolution for gaming on these graphics cards, the GTX 650 Ti was 26% faster than the Radeon HD 7770 and 66% faster than the $100 7750. In this scenario we see the $20 extra you pay for the GTX 650 Ti are justified as the card is a good deal faster.

Moving up in price we have the GeForce GTX 660 which sells for $220. At that price it competes with the Radeon HD 7870 ($240) or 7850 ($180). The GTX 660 is 8% cheaper than the 7870 and 22% more expensive than the 7850. On the performance side, at 1920x1200 the Radeon HD 7850 was on average 12% slower than the GTX 660, while the GeForce trailed the 7870 by a 5% margin.

The Radeon HD 7850 is the best value graphics card for those looking at spending $200 of less, however it's also quite a bit slower than the Radeon HD 7870 or GeForce GTX 660.

Jumping to the $300 range, we find the GeForce GTX 660 Ti ($280) which can be compared to either the Radeon HD 7870 at $240 or the Radeon HD 7950 at $300. In this three-way shootout, the GeForce GTX 660 Ti was 9% faster than the Radeon HD 7870 at 1920x1200 and just 2% slower than the 7950. This makes the Radeon HD 7870 a better value option, while the GeForce GTX 660 Ti is the best buy if you can do without the $280.

Price Top Pick
$100 - $150 GeForce GTX 650 Ti
$150 - $200 Radeon HD 7850
$200 - $250 GeForce GTX 660
$250 - $300 GeForce GTX 660 Ti
$300 - $400 Radeon HD 7950 Boost
$400 and up Radeon HD 7970

Moving forward, it's important to point out that while there is a significant difference between the Radeon HD 7970 and 7970 GHz Edition, this does not appear to be the case with the Radeon HD 7950 and 7950 Boost graphics cards as both retail for $300.

This plays out to AMD's advantage. At 1920x1200 the GeForce GTX 670 is 12% faster than the Radeon HD 7950 and just 2% faster than the 7950 Boost. However the GTX 670 is 27% more expensive than both cards, so whichever way you slice it the Radeon HD 7950 Boost is the better proposition and things just get worse for the GTX 670 as the resolution is increased.

Now for the big guns, the GeForce GTX 680 vs. Radeon HD 7970 battle. The GeForce GTX 680 will currently set you back $470, a 18% premium over the $400 Radeon HD 7970.

Breaking down performance figures at 1920x1200, the GeForce GTX 680 was just ~1% faster than the Radeon HD 7970, while it trailed the 7970 GHz Edition by a 7% margin. This doesn't change at 2560x1600, where the GeForce GTX 680 is 2% slower than the Radeon HD 7970 and 11% slower than the 7970 GHz Edition, making the 7970 the obvious choice.

For quick reference of our best of the best GPU picks see the table on the right, broken down at each price increment with shortcut shopping links.

In a nutshell, the GeForce GTX 650 Ti is the best $100 - $150 solution, while the Radeon HD 7850 is the best $150-$200 option. Then the GeForce GTX 660 is the best $200 - $250 graphics card, making the GTX 660 Ti the best $250 - $300 option. From $300 - $400 we pick the Radeon HD 7950 Boost and when spending $400 or more the Radeon HD 7970 is our pick.

Posted on Nov 28, 2012, 1:30:11 PM PST
P. Iso says:
The $250-$300 range makes me laugh. The 7870 is best value, but the 660 Ti is the best buy.

Makes no sense to me, but I cannot complain. Especially since I got 7870 for $185. ;)

Posted on Nov 28, 2012, 1:36:32 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 28, 2012, 1:37:35 PM PST
SMH says:
I just bought a 7850 for $149 on Monday. I guess I didn't do too badly.

Edit: I now have all my components and am ready to build!

Posted on Nov 28, 2012, 1:46:20 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 28, 2012, 1:58:45 PM PST
got mayo?™ says:
It's all about the performance you want at a given resolution.

Article sort of misses Nvidia's own value proposition driven by partner cards while including the 7950 Boost and 7970 ghz *factory tuned* options in the discussion against vanilla gtx670. At 360-400 there exist overclocked 670's that give you gtx680/7970 performance at 1080p.

GIGABYTE GV-N670OC-2GD GeForce GTX 670 Windforce OC 2048MB GDDR5 256-bit PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Graphics Card. $359

MSI N670GTX-PM2D2GD5/OC GeForce GTX 670 2 GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card (N670GTX-PM2D2GD5/OC) $369

EVGA GeForce GTX670 FTW 2048MB GDDR5 256bit, Dual Dual-Link DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort, 4-Way SLI Ready Graphics Card Graphics Cards 02G-P4-2678-KR $399

Amd does have the bundled games lately, which is rather nice.

Point is, if you settle on any price point and you shop and research, you have the power to get the most for your money from either company. They are competing, and so are their partners.

Posted on Nov 28, 2012, 2:13:42 PM PST
I have a Sapphire 7850 OC Edition and it's straight Boss. Can handle darn near everything at Max with Great FPS. The only game to bog it down so far is Witcher 2 with Ubersampling turned on (turned off it runs Great)

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2012, 2:21:12 PM PST
GUEST!! says:
My current card is a GTX 275. I need the 650 to be at least 400 something numbers better than my current card.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2012, 2:49:08 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 28, 2012, 2:50:06 PM PST
P. Iso says:
My 7870 OC gets bogged down by SSAO. But that definitely makes the game look fantastic.

( Bogged down means less than 60 FPS @ 1080p)

Posted on Nov 28, 2012, 2:49:12 PM PST
pyroguy says:
well i'm currently looking at the GTX660 graphics card being my next-in-line PC upgrade, with the 500-watt power supply (to support it) being the final one, as I wanna play games like "Rage", "Doom 3/RoE", "AvP 2010", and even the "Dead Space" series (especially with part-3 coming out in February-March 2013) on near-max/max settings so I wouldn't have to worry about my games having severe lagging issues, if not the occasional freeze-up or crashing

Posted on Nov 28, 2012, 2:58:05 PM PST
Uncle Ulty says:
I got the GTX680 Twin Frozr from MSI recently as a gift. While I admit the value isn't the best, it performs so well and so much more efficient than my old GTX 560.

MSI really makes quality GPU's and their FROZR line of cards are super quiet, energy efficient, and run at exceptionally low temps. The advertised 20 C below other GPU temps is no joke.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2012, 3:01:39 PM PST
John Galt says:
I've been slowly buying parts for my first build as well. Good luck.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2012, 3:12:36 PM PST
Uncle Ulty says:
Ubersampling on Witcher 2 is just ridiculous. I can run it on pretty OK on my GTX 680, but its really not worth it. More of just a bragging type of thing to say your computer can do it rather than it actually being a huge upgrade.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2012, 4:34:11 PM PST
Yeah, I can't do the sampling, tesselation, or SSAO stuff on The Witcher 2. It is still a gorgeous game!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2012, 4:52:49 PM PST
Finger says:
Just in time. Thanks K.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2012, 4:58:15 PM PST
Welcome! Hope that helps you make your GPU decision.
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Discussion in:  Video Games forum
Participants:  11
Total posts:  14
Initial post:  Nov 28, 2012
Latest post:  Nov 28, 2012

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