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PhysX with GTX680 or HD7970

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Feb 28, 2013
Im getting ready to upgrade my computer and ready to start purchasing all the pieces but am stuck on the video card. It has come down to a model GTX680 or HD7970. This rig will basically be used for games, and I would like to see it tackle Crysis 3 (ultra settings) with a respectable FPS. My question is about Nvidia's Physx.

1. Can a ATI card produce the same effects as a GTX card with PhysX technology?

2. I have noticed a lot of rigs running a higher model GTX for graphic power, and a lower model for a dedicated PhysX card. Can a single GTX 680 pull off high end graphics and run PhysX?

**Games would be ran at 1080


Jul 2, 2012
U have what??
Buying a gpu and than 1 more for dedicated PhysX is increadibly stupid.

First off, very few games actually supports PhysX

As for GTX 680 Stay away from it! Espesially the 4gb as the 256 bit isn't enough to handel 4gb vram.

Now go with the 7970 it beats the 680 Hands down.
Its your best option if you want lots of performance for your money.
1. PHYSX generally doesn't run at all on AMD cards and if you try it usually slows the game as to be unplayable.

2. PHYSX addon cards are a poor idea. You must be very careful choosing which card to use as an addon card or else it bottlenecks the main card. It rarely makes sense and it also adds to heat and noise.

3. PHYSX is often a little eye-candy that causes a big hit to your frame rates. I have a GTX680 (Asus TOP) and for several games I don't use it. In Batman Arkham City it causes stuttering (both DX11 and PHYSX should be disabled in this game).

*The rule of thumb with PHYSX is don't use it if you can't achieve 60FPS (VSYNC'd) with maximum or close to maximum settings as well. There's little point in adding the extra eye candy if you are required to lower other more important settings or your frame rate.

4. The best value I've seen in high-end graphics card is this Asus HD7970 (overclock it to 1000MHz): http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=68755&vpn=HD7970-DC2-3GD5&manufacture=ASUS

Review: http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages/asus_radeon_hd_7970_directcu_ii_review,24.html
(*older review, at 1000MHz you can compare find benchmarks and use an HD7970 GHz card as reference)

5. I own this Asus GTX 680 DC2T card:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121634&Tpk=680%20dc2t (out of stock I guess)

PHYSX is just one part of the puzzle. The HD7970 model I recommend is cheaper than a similar GTX 680, has two free games and in a few games is significantly faster. The HD7000 cards have improved COMPUTE capabilities which can be leveraged at times.

The GTX 680 has PhysX, Adaptive VSYNC and some other features.


While I recommend the HD7970 overall, your comment about the GTX 680 and 256-bit is completely incorrect. Many "reviewers" have commented about this who didn't understand the memory interface properly. The GTX680 was the best single-GPU card overall until the HD7970 GHz version came out and none of the benchmarks show a bandwidth issue with the memory interface.

*A 256-bit bus works perfectly fine if the frequency is high enough, which it is.

Having said that, 4GB cards tend to cost more and few games can use more than 2GB with a single monitor anyway so they are generally a poor value.

Just FYI.
I just realized I didn't know which CPU he has since he's "updating" his system.

Just be aware that some games are more CPU-bottlenecked than others. A high-end graphics card can be bottlenecked at times if:
a) the Main RAM runs lower than DDR3 at 1600MHz (the optimal amount is 8GB)
b) the CPU is slower than an i5-3570K

If the motherboard is an AMD board then get the FX-8350 if supported (and possibly overclock). If your upgrade includes a NEW MOTHERBOARD then it's best to do this:
a) i5-3570K
b) Z77 1155 motherboard (Asrock/Asus/Gigabyte/MSI). Possibly Asrock is the best value.
c) 8GB DDR3 1600MHz G. Skill
d) CPU HSF (stock coolers are very noisy under load)


Feb 28, 2013

You pretty much nailed my upgrade. Sorry I forgot to include the specs.

CPU: i5-3570

MB: BIOSTAR TZ77XE4 LGA 1155 Intel Z77
(When I first decided on this board I didnt come with the free ram)
CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB

Heat Sink: CORSAIR Hydro series H50 High Performance CPU Cooler

SSD: Crucial M4 128GB
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