Question Gtx 970 still worth it?

Mar 19, 2020
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I have an i5-4460 with 16gb of ram with intel hd 4600. Of course the gpu sucks so i want to upgrade. Should i buy an GTX 970 4gb vram(3.5 actually but ok) at around 100 bucks (used) or a GTX 1060 6gb vram at around 200 bucks (used). I have low budget .From what i saw these gpus have almost same performance , 1060 having an edge but is it worth paying more for that a little better performance and more vram and that it's newer?
 
Mar 19, 2020
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I would go for the 1060. The extra VRAM will help in newer games especially.

On top of that it will get driver updates longer than the 970.
Yeah but twice as much ? Plus it has a way higher chance that it was used in mining , everybody uses 1060 for mining. Games don't require that much vram plus my monitor on 1280x1024 sometimes even 1280x720 cause 4:3 is weird in some games. Playing new games in 720p won'tbe a problem Im just asking if there is like a really good reason to spend that extra 100 bucks.
 
Worth is something only YOU can determine.
Both cards perform similarly.

1. What is the make/model of your psu?
The GTX970 is an older card that needs more power. Usually two 6 pin connectors. Probably a 500w psu. A GTX1060 may do ok on 450w with one 6 pin connector on a quality psu.

2. What kinds of games do you play? If you favor cpu centric games such as sims, mmo and strategy games you may be cpu limited. You may find that a lesser graphics card will be sufficient.
If you play fast action games, the gpu is most important.

Try this test:
Run YOUR games, but lower your resolution and eye candy.
If your FPS increases, it indicates that your cpu is strong enough to drive a better graphics configuration.
If your FPS stays the same, you are likely more cpu limited.

I would not use vram as a selection criteria.
VRAM has become a marketing issue.
My understanding is that vram is more of a performance issue than a functional issue.
A game needs to have most of the data in vram that it uses most of the time.
Somewhat like real ram.
If a game needs something not in vram, it needs to get it across the pcie boundary
hopefully from real ram and hopefully not from a hard drive.
It is not informative to know to what level the available vram is filled.
Possibly much of what is there is not needed.
What is not known is the rate of vram exchange.
Vram is managed by the Graphics card driver, and by the game. There may be differences in effectiveness between amd and nvidia cards.
And differences between games.
Here is an older performance test comparing 2gb with 4gb vram.
Spoiler... not a significant difference.
A more current set of tests shows the same results:
http://www.techspot.com/review/1114-vram-comparison-test/page5.html

And... no game maker wants to limit their market by
requiring huge amounts of vram. The vram you see will be appropriate to the particular card.
 
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I have an i5-4460 with 16gb of ram with intel hd 4600. Of course the gpu sucks so i want to upgrade. Should i buy an GTX 970 4gb vram(3.5 actually but ok) at around 100 bucks (used) or a GTX 1060 6gb vram at around 200 bucks (used). I have low budget .From what i saw these gpus have almost same performance , 1060 having an edge but is it worth paying more for that a little better performance and more vram and that it's newer?
look for an RX 580 8GB
 
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King_V

Distinguished
What is your monitor's resolution and refresh rate? Does it have FreeSync, GSync, or neither?

Is this an OEM system (like a Dell, HP, etc)? If so, which one? If not, what is your motherboard brand and model?

What country are you buying in? If the US, there are better cards for less than $200 NEW with full warranty. That price for a used 1060 is crazy.

It would also be helpful to know what brand and model your power supply is.
 
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AJNameS

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Apr 5, 2020
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I think I myself would go for 1650 as it has xtra small variations with no need of very strong psu with psu cable, and the likelihood of issues with it is pretty low, despite being a bit minor to the other two. As for the them, 1060 is better ofc. 970 would a bit more likely force u turn down settings. Ofc, the price varies, and it depends on ur pocket and what u have in ur country. If you can trust the seller, then 1060 6 gb is the way. U can tell them to make them some tests (gpu-z, firestrike, etc). 970 really needs a harder PSU.
 
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The GTX 970 is not that great of a choice if you want to run high res textures, especially when 512MB of the 4GB total is slower than the other 3.5GB. That doesn't mean it's a bad card, just that you would need to keep the vram usage under 3.4GB. So that would be no higher than 1080p resolution and likely medium to high texture settings.
 
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Reactions: Iopta
Mar 19, 2020
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What is your monitor's resolution and refresh rate? Does it have FreeSync, GSync, or neither?

Is this an OEM system (like a Dell, HP, etc)? If so, which one? If not, what is your motherboard brand and model?

What country are you buying in? If the US, there are better cards for less than $200 NEW with full warranty. That price for a used 1060 is crazy.

It would also be helpful to know what brand and model your power supply is.
I have a Gigabyte Z97-D3H . I am living in Moldova and those are the prices here unfortunately. A 1660 for example (used) is 300 bucks. And my monitor is an old Lg flatron L1950sq 1280x1024.
And the power supply doesn't matter cause i will buy a new one with the card cause mine doesn't have 6 pin or 8 pin connectors.



Worth is something only YOU can determine.
Both cards perform similarly.

1. What is the make/model of your psu?
The GTX970 is an older card that needs more power. Usually two 6 pin connectors. Probably a 500w psu. A GTX1060 may do ok on 450w with one 6 pin connector on a quality psu.

2. What kinds of games do you play? If you favor cpu centric games such as sims, mmo and strategy games you may be cpu limited. You may find that a lesser graphics card will be sufficient.
If you play fast action games, the gpu is most important.

Try this test:
Run YOUR games, but lower your resolution and eye candy.
If your FPS increases, it indicates that your cpu is strong enough to drive a better graphics configuration.
If your FPS stays the same, you are likely more cpu limited.

I would not use vram as a selection criteria.
VRAM has become a marketing issue.
My understanding is that vram is more of a performance issue than a functional issue.
A game needs to have most of the data in vram that it uses most of the time.
Somewhat like real ram.
If a game needs something not in vram, it needs to get it across the pcie boundary
hopefully from real ram and hopefully not from a hard drive.
It is not informative to know to what level the available vram is filled.
Possibly much of what is there is not needed.
What is not known is the rate of vram exchange.
Vram is managed by the Graphics card driver, and by the game. There may be differences in effectiveness between amd and nvidia cards.
And differences between games.
Here is an older performance test comparing 2gb with 4gb vram.
Spoiler... not a significant difference.
A more current set of tests shows the same results:
http://www.techspot.com/review/1114-vram-comparison-test/page5.html

And... no game maker wants to limit their market by
requiring huge amounts of vram. The vram you see will be appropriate to the particular card.
1.I said above i'll buy a new psu.
2. I like both cpu and gpu type of games (pubg , csgo , Assassin's Creed , gta etc)
I don't think i5-4460 will be a problem , it is still a capable processor if you want to game. I have on 1280x1024 in gta v like 30 fps and on 1024x720 like 50 on low.
look for an RX 580 8GB
There is a Saplhire RX-580 Pulse 4gb 5 bucks cheaper than gtx 970 and a Sapphire RX-580 Nitro+ 8gb 10 bucks more expensive than the 970. But is it better ?
 
I have a Gigabyte Z97-D3H . I am living in Moldova and those are the prices here unfortunately. A 1660 for example (used) is 300 bucks. And my monitor is an old Lg flatron L1950sq 1280x1024.
And the power supply doesn't matter cause i will buy a new one with the card cause mine doesn't have 6 pin or 8 pin connectors.




1.I said above i'll buy a new psu.
2. I like both cpu and gpu type of games (pubg , csgo , Assassin's Creed , gta etc)
I don't think i5-4460 will be a problem , it is still a capable processor if you want to game. I have on 1280x1024 in gta v like 30 fps and on 1024x720 like 50 on low.

There is a Saplhire RX-580 Pulse 4gb 5 bucks cheaper than gtx 970 and a Sapphire RX-580 Nitro+ 8gb 10 bucks more expensive than the 970. But is it better ?
For $15 the 8GB easily. Allows you to run settings that games flat out won’t let you turn on if you have less than 6GB of VRAM. Plus the RX 580 is more in line with the 980 than the 970. Believe it outperforms the GTX 1060 6GB now
 
Reactions: Iopta
Mar 19, 2020
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For $15 the 8GB easily. Allows you to run settings that games flat out won’t let you turn on if you have less than 6GB of VRAM. Plus the RX 580 is more in line with the 980 than the 970. Believe it outperforms the GTX 1060 6GB now
Well then i think i will take the rx 580 . But what about the 570 is it like a lot worse? Cause it is even cheaper.
 
Well then i think i will take the rx 580 . But what about the 570 is it like a lot worse? Cause it is even cheaper.
Both the RX 570 and 580 require more power than the GTX 970 and like the 970, they also use 2 PCIE cables. The GTX 1060/1650/1650 Super all use far less power and require only a single PCIE cable and the 1650 Super is as fast or faster than the 580 depending on the game. The 1060 3/6GB and 1650 are usually faster than the 570, but it depends on the game. The GTX 970 is slightly slower than the GTX 1060 3GB.

Edit - If you don't plan to play at higher than 1080p resolution, you likely won't need more than 4GB vram unless you want ultra texture settings or highres texture mods and official HD texture packs.
 
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Mar 19, 2020
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Both the RX 570 and 580 require more power than the GTX 970 and like the 970, they also use 2 PCIE cables. The GTX 1060/1650/1650 Super all use far less power and require only a single PCIE cable and the 1650 Super is as fast or faster than the 580 depending on the game. The 1060 3/6GB and 1650 are usually faster than the 570, but it depends on the game. The GTX 970 is slightly slower than the GTX 1060 3GB.

Edit - If you don't plan to play at higher than 1080p resolution, you likely won't need more than 4GB vram unless you want ultra texture settings or highres texture mods and official HD texture packs.
Thanks , i don't care about power consumption , i care about the price and the 580 is like waaaaay cheaper than the 1650 even though it's much better (from what i read).
Thanks for help from everybody
 

King_V

Distinguished
Kind of a digression, but....

The 1060 3/6GB and 1650 are usually faster than the 570, but it depends on the game.
Not really so - that was one of the big disappointments of the GTX 1650. More expensive than, yet slower than, the RX 570.

The new GTX 1650 with GDDR6 may possibly catch up to the RX570, though, until performance test are done, it's hard to say for sure.
 
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Kind of a digression, but....


Not really so - that was one of the big disappointments of the GTX 1650. More expensive than, yet slower than, the RX 570.

The new GTX 1650 with GDDR6 may possibly catch up to the RX570, though, until performance test are done, it's hard to say for sure.
The driver improvements for th 570 have pushed it within spitting distance of the 1060, but the 1650 is still slightly faster than the 570 in probably close to the majority of PC games released in the last 5 years or Nvidia biased. The 1650 has always been slower than the 1060 though. If you look at benchmark numbers for the 570 on games released in the last 1-2 years, you will see it has performance numbers from nearly as good to faster than the 1060 6GB. A lot of it is down to whether the game was Nvidia or AMD biased in PC development or if it was a PS4/XB1 port.

I don't see the new 1650 GDDR6 card being any better than the original. It's getting a memory bandiwdth boost but losing some base core clock speed. The 1650 Super is likely going to still be the better buy as it's usually faster than the RX 580, but isn't that far off in price from the 1650.
 
The driver improvements for th 570 have pushed it within spitting distance of the 1060, but the 1650 is still slightly faster than the 570 in probably close to the majority of PC games released in the last 5 years or Nvidia biased. The 1650 has always been slower than the 1060 though. If you look at benchmark numbers for the 570 on games released in the last 1-2 years, you will see it has performance numbers from nearly as good to faster than the 1060 6GB. A lot of it is down to whether the game was Nvidia or AMD biased in PC development or if it was a PS4/XB1 port.

I don't see the new 1650 GDDR6 card being any better than the original. It's getting a memory bandiwdth boost but losing some base core clock speed. The 1650 Super is likely going to still be the better buy as it's usually faster than the RX 580, but isn't that far off in price from the 1650.
It also only has 4GB of VRAM. Personally in higher end games I’m using at least 5-6
 
Like Linus would say, if u want to have ur 1080p max settings 60+ fps guaranteed, go for at least 6 gigs of vram.
The RX 570 and GTX 1060/1650/1650 Super are just not fast enough to maintain 60fps at 1080p with max settings in most games. That is mainly why I've been saying that 4GB is probably more than enough for these mid-range GPUs, unless you want ultra textures or modded textures that require more than 4GB.

Red Dead Redemption 2 and Borderlands 3 are two new games I've been playing that I have seen reach just over 5GB vram on my GTX 1070 at 1080p. In RDR2, I use a mix of medium to ultra settings that get me fps from low 50s to high 70s. In BL3 I have nearly everything maxed out except a few settings, but usually never drop below 60fps and see highs in the 90s. I play almost all my games at 1080p on my 144Hz monitor.

Witcher 3 maxed out with no AA, uses around 2-2.5GB vram at 1080p for 60-80fps. Assassins Creed Origins uses almost 4GB with high to ultra settings for mid 50s to mid 60s fps. When I last played Far Cry 5 and New dawn, I think both used under 3.8GB vram with mostly maxed out settings with no AA and had around 60-90fps. I don't remember how much vram was used with the HD texture packs, but I think it was around 5.5-6.5GB total vram used.

Total vram used isn't just down to texture quality, but also shadows and other settings that eat up vram. A lot of those settings also require a lot of GPU power, which means that even if you had 6GB on your GTX 1650 Super, you likely won't maintain 60fps with max settings at 1080p in newer games and you are more likely to be using a mix of medium to high settings. Another factor would be whether the game is more or less CPU biased, so a faster CPU might allow for higher graphics settings with a mid-range GPU.
 

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