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No clue what I'm doing, which graphics card is better?

#1J_walker6Posted 7/21/2014 10:34:27 AM
Hey,

I really don't know much about how graphics cards work. I'm currently using a Geforce 560 and I'm going to be upgrading right away. My friend is trying to sell me 2 Nvidia GTX 580's and another friend is telling me to just get the Nvidia GTX 770. Due to the 580's being used the price for either both of those or 1 770 is roughly the same.

What should I go with...? I'm trying to run Skyrim with a bunch of graphic enhancer mods.
#2ShubPosted 7/21/2014 10:37:38 AM
I'd go with the GTX 770. A pair of 580s may perform better in some situations, but most likely your friend has the 1.5 GB VRAM variants, and you don't want to buy 1.5 GB cards at a time when 2 GB is a minimum in any decent build, and the GTX 770 is going to perform very well in any case. And you won't have to deal with possible SLI issues that way.
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-What is best in life?
-To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of the women.
#3J_walker6(Topic Creator)Posted 7/21/2014 10:40:21 AM
Hmmm that makes sense. I was told if I go with the 2 580's I'd have to upgrade my power supply from 650 watt to 850 so that's another thing.

So if the 580's are 1.5 GB each, wouldn't 2 be 3 GB and thus better than the 2 GB from the 770? Or Is that not how this works at all?
#4ShubPosted 7/21/2014 10:43:49 AM
VRAM in SLI doesn't stack. Both cards operate independently to produce each frame, they just split the load between themselves, so they have to have access to the same information.

As for upgrading your PSU, two 580s definitely do not need 850W, but 650W could be a tight fit depending on your entire setup.
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-What is best in life?
-To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of the women.
#5LvthnPosted 7/21/2014 10:44:46 AM
2 580s is a dated setup that you shouldn't take unless he's giving it away.

VRAM does not stack in SLI. Doesn't matter if you have 4 cards with 3GB, the total VRAM available is still 3GB, not 12GB.
#6Molt_CcCoyPosted 7/21/2014 10:46:31 AM
Definitely go with the 770. No need to change your PSU and its still a beastly card.

Unfortunately video ram is not cumulative. So the two 580s would only get you 1.5 GB ram.

Also you don't need to worry about some of the hassles of sli (microstutter, excess heat and power consumption)
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#7J_walker6(Topic Creator)Posted 7/21/2014 11:00:16 AM
All right. Well if that card is going to solve my FPS problems and will be cheaper in the long run, then that sounds good to me!

It's about 300 for both 580's and 150 for the new PSU. And the 770 would be about 400.

Thanks for all the help!