Rendering: GTX 590 vs ATI HD6990

Chirag Borawake

Sep 23, 2011
Hey guys, need your opinions for the latest upgrade.
My friend has got:
Intel P55 motherboard
Nvidia 9800GT 512MB
Coolermaster 700watt PSU

He needs to upgrade his Graphics card, probably a GTX590 for 2 years up ahead.
He's Industrial Design Student, from International School Of Design.
3D softwares: Autodesk Alias, 3Ds MAX, MAYA, Rhino, Keyshot, any many more.

Now for rendering, just for 2 years, does he really need to invest that much? Because ATI is launching the HD 7000 series soon (XDR2 memory-twice faster than GDDR5, 28nm processed-less power consumption)
Or if he needs to, then which is better for 3d modeling and rendering purpose? GTX 590 or ATI HD6990?
Or if any other GPU suggestions, they will be appreciated.
Just need your opinions, and a short description why you chose that.


Jul 30, 2011
If you friend is willing to spend that much money, then he needs a card specifically designed for 3D modeling. A standard graphics card could help rendering, but it would just be wasted money if he isn't going to do any gaming. He needs either an AMD FirePro card or a NVIDIA Quadro card. These cards are designed to to be faster at rendering than a standard graphics card, even higher end graphics cards such as the ones you mentioned.
You guys are somewhat right, it depends on what renderer you are using but for modelling, the 9800gt should be plenty, the 450 isn't much of an upgrade. Keyshot, max and maya software renderer and mental ray are cpu dependent, they don't use the gpu at all, I don't know about alias or rhino but most software does not come with gpu accelerated renderers standard. If he has an add on renderer then do tell. Also max 2012 now comes with quicksilver and iray but most would agree they are not production ready versions as there are many compatibility issues, bugs and quite a bit of other things to work out. They also support cuda so would go with nvidia.

Quadros/firepro do not render faster, for the same price geforce/radeon will actually render faster as they would have more cores. But workstation cards are made to handle this type of work and would help a lot in the viewports. The only problem is your ram is going to run out before you see much benefit from it.