Lets Get Speculating :P

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Jan 5, 2013
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So with the next generation of graphics cards around the corner I have a few questions for you more experienced computer builders out there:

1) What do you expect the pricing of the high end 8xxx series to be
2) Are the reference cards actually any good or is it best to wait for non-reference designs?
3) Is mature drivers actually a problem for newly released cards or is this just over hyped by everyone?

I ask because I am planning to upgrade to a high end 8000 series when they come out and I wasn't into all this kind of stuff back when the last generation was released so I'm not sure about a lot of this stuff. Thanks for any help even if it is just opinion :D
 
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1) If rumours can be trusted, the 8k series are going to be a significant upgrade to the 7k, and are going to be "competitively priced." Most of us are hopefully taking that to mean they're going to be equal or lesser prices of their comparable 7k series when they were released. *(The reasonable prices, not the crazy ones they thought they could get at first.)

2) Depends on your scenario - in some cases it's better to have a blower-style cooler, for example if airflow is nonexistent, or in a case like the Bitfenix Prodigy, where the card is flat up against an air vent. That being said, even with a blower-style exhaust, you're ALWAYS going to be better off waiting for an aftermarket cooler. (EVGA's Signature 2, for example, is a...
1) that one is very hard to predict. normally amf goes for bang for your buck when competing with nvidia price wise. but with 7000 series they change it into better performance with premium price. so it is much more harder to predict compared to the past releases. but i dare to bet it wont be super cheap like costing 350 while 40% faster than competition fastest flagship :lol:

2) i see nothing wrong with the reference design. the custom version is there to offer something better than reference but it doesn't mean the reference model are outright bad. when looking for custom made card normally people will look into better cooling solution or card with better pcb for much better overclocking potential.

3) driver wise amd is improving and moving into positive direction as it is.

 
Jan 5, 2013
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I am definitely somebody who would overclock so would you say it would be better for me to wait for non reference designs? Also I do expect the prices to be at a premium on release aswel realistically but I'm hoping that the top of the line card will not exceed $550? Thanks for the help by the way
 
1) If rumours can be trusted, the 8k series are going to be a significant upgrade to the 7k, and are going to be "competitively priced." Most of us are hopefully taking that to mean they're going to be equal or lesser prices of their comparable 7k series when they were released. *(The reasonable prices, not the crazy ones they thought they could get at first.)

2) Depends on your scenario - in some cases it's better to have a blower-style cooler, for example if airflow is nonexistent, or in a case like the Bitfenix Prodigy, where the card is flat up against an air vent. That being said, even with a blower-style exhaust, you're ALWAYS going to be better off waiting for an aftermarket cooler. (EVGA's Signature 2, for example, is a great example of this.) If you have bad airflow or want to overclock at all, then you definitely want an aftermarket design. (And yeah, as renz496 said, non-reference PCBs are extremely sexy - I have an EVGA 670 with a 680 pcb, and got lucky enough that it's faster than a friends' overclocked 680 with a reference cooler.)

3) Yes, it is. You can expect drivers to mature over the course of about a year, gaining about 30% better improvement overall. (Same can be said of games though - it takes a while for them to get good driver support, which is why it's not uncommon for a driver release to completely flip benchmarks on their head.) I'm not sure what renz was talking about, but drivers are about equal between AMD and nVidia: any bad things you heard about AMD likely spawned from ATI, before AMD, and were resolved many years ago.



 
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Yes, you want a non-reference cooler with a non-reference PCB, if ideal.

As for top of the line card, do you mean a (names not official) 8990, or a 8970? The 8990 is going to be just as expensive as always - they're targeted at people with wallets too full and brains too empty. The 8970 should be $500 at most, on first release. The early non-reference designs will be about $550 for the nice ones, but those prices will drop quickly, and I highly, HIGHLY recommend you wait for them to do so.

Here's why:

Remember the ASUS GTX 670 / 680 TOP edition? They beat the living crap out of anyone else's cards, and were priced like it. Why were they so powerful? Because ASUS binned their cards selectively - the best manufacturered cards got turned into TOP editions. Know why the TOP is so hard to find nowadays? Because ASUS now manufacturers EVERY card to that standard - you're essentially getting a TOP edition card with every normal card you buy.

Early adopters get to grab the cards that are made before the manufacturers really know exactly what they're doing - that means if you wait a few months, you'll get a better card for cheaper.
 


if you're really serious about overclocking then custom card will be definitely for you. about the price it could be tricky for next gen. in the past amd always the one to release first. but this time it is possible both company will launch theirs around the same time or close to each other. so the price could be comptitive for both camp from the very start. to be honest i was hoping Rory Reed will not going to pull another premium price launch like he did to 7000 series.
 
Jan 5, 2013
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I would be going for the 8970 (given that's what it gets called), sadly I don't have a endless amount of money to throw at my computer so no 8990 for me. Thanks for the recommendation of waiting I think I will, I'm fine to wait with my current gtx 460 for a few more months. How long (at a guess) does it take for the non reference designs to get released by Asus etc?
 
Jan 5, 2013
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Thanks for the help, I'll definitely agree I don't want a premium price launch but who knows. Luckily as you said having both manufacturers releasing at close to the same time should drive down the prices and let me get a better GPU for my money :D
 
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