With a very strict budget, should I buy another ASUS Strix 970 for SLI? A few additional questions about my build.

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Hello everyone and I hope you're having a great Father's Day!

I'm considering purchasing another ASUS Strix 970 for SLI and my budget right now is $150 and no higher so I would have to find a deal on eBay, take a risk and buy used.

I've been gaming a bit more lately and right now I'm playing the Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. I thought I could max everything but I find myself having to turn settings down, even with the Nvidia Hairworks turned off. I can't add HD texture mods or use any reshades.

Here is my current build:

CPU: Intel Core i7-4790K @ 4.00GHz / MOBO: ASUS Maximus Hero VII, GPU: ASUS STRIX GTX 970 4GB / MEM: CORSAIR Dominator Platinum 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3 @ 1066MHz / PSU: CORSAIR HX650 / SSHD: Seagate Hybrid Drive 2TB SATA-III 6.0Gb/s 7200 RPM / OS: Windows 10 64-bit / MONITOR: ASUS 24" & LG 42LD550UB

My GPU idling temperature was 60c after a fresh restart. I toggled the fans to manual using ASUS GPU tweak and put them at 99% power. The noise doesn't bother me. It may be essential because with this build, I don't have additional cooling but I'm wondering if running at 99% during game play will degrade card over time.

I'm looking at a YouTube video on overclocking the Strix using FFXIV Heavensward. I'm also going to vacuum out some of the dust later.

When I asked Newegg about buying an additional ASUS GTX 970 STRIX (a random popup came up offering to help) I was told to either wait for 1070 models, or price slashes for the GTX 980ti. I looked at the 980ti price drops and it still wasn't within in my budget.

I should also mention (and probably goes without saying based on my monitor) that I only game at 1920x1080. It only has 60hz. I will also say that Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt does tend to run fine around 40-50 fps but if you're familiar with the game, there's an area called Novigrad where it begins to stutter and it's my favorite area of the game.

tl;dr/questions:


  • Is running the fan at 99% degrading my video card?
    Should I overclock my CPU even though my build doesn't have additional cooling?
    Is buying a used 970 STRIX (on ebay, craigslist, etc) worth it at this point?
Thank you!
 

ddferrari

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Well I just looked on ebay and the cheapest 970 strix was at $145, "reserve not met", and did not include shipping. Not sure you're going to find that card for $150 total, yet. Other than the Witcher, how are other games performing? Seems like a 970 should handle 1080p quite well, and I certainly wouldn't buy more hardware for one game. If you plan to stay with the 970 for a few years, yes an SLI solution would make a huge difference. Ignore all the naysayers who will chime in about the horrors of SLI- I've had SLI 670s for three years and 95% of the time it works perfectly. Your PSU is more than up to the task.

"Is running the fan at 99% degrading my video card?"

No, the fans don't mind full speed at all. Cards degrade faster from heat, so run those fans all you like.

"Should I overclock my CPU even though my build doesn't have additional cooling?"

Some will scream no way, not without an aftermarket cooler and yes that is recommended. But it's not like your CPU is going to shoot up from 45 degrees Celsius to 105 in an instant. Just back down the OC, or return to stock speed altogether until you have better cooling if it runs too hot. It is IMPERATIVE that you download a CPU temp monitor that shows in your taskbar at all times. I use this freebie: https://www.techpowerup.com/realtemp/

By the way, OCing your CPU is only going to get you a 5-10% increase increase in fps, max.

"Is buying a used 970 STRIX (on ebay, craigslist, etc) worth it at this point?"

Sure, SLI 970 would give you close (but not quite) 980ti performance, plenty for 1080p.

 

ael00

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The only time you want to sli is when the top end market (1080 / 980ti) does not deliver enough for your needs. You will always get better run for your money from a single card.
 

ddferrari

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Yes, we all know that, but the OP stated that the budget was $150. At that price range SLI is the ONLY way they're going to get an upgrade.

 

ael00

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that is just simply not true, you can always sell your gpu and look for an upgrade on the second hand market. far more value there.
 

Epicness937

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that is more then true but given the money you can get for a 970 now you still cant afford a 1070 unless you sell your cpu and get a 4690k instead
 

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