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Aaron Cumberland

ATI R9 270X vs. Nvidia GTX 660 - which one to buy?

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Hello fellow simmers,

 

My current budget puts me in the price range of either a ATI R9270X or a Nvidia GTX 660 video card.     Purchasing either of these cards will set me back an average of $200 U.S., and this is about as much as I can afford after settling up with the IRS this year.   :(    Both cards come with 2GB of onboard memory, and will be paired with a Core I5 4670K Haswell CPU that lives on a MSI G-45 (Intel Z87) motherboard.  

 

Which card would appeal most to you hardcore guys here?      I will be upgrading from an ATI 4870  1 GB card and will be using the new card with both FSX and P3D V2.2.        

 

Thank you for any insight you can provide!        

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Which card would appeal most to you hardcore guys here? I will be upgrading from an ATI 4870 1 GB card and will be using the new card with both FSX and P3D V2.2.


 

Aaron, the GTX660 is getting pretty old these days.

Do you mean a GTX760?

 

gb.

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Aaron, the GTX660 is getting pretty old these days.

Do you mean a GTX760?

 

gb.

 

LOL, no I definitely mean the GTX660.     We're talking a ballpark $200 price point with my budget.     The 760 prices vary from $250-$270 on average.      I sure wish I could afford it but such is life.....      However, I'm always happy to accept donations from well-wishing fans?      Back to reality though -   :)

 

Benchmark-wise, the ATI R9 270X will typically dominate the 660, but there always seem to be issues with ATI and FSX.    

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LOL, no I definitely mean the GTX660.     We're talking a ballpark $200 price point with my budget.     The 760 prices vary from $250-$270 on average.      I sure wish I could afford it but such is life.....      However, I'm always happy to accept donations from well-wishing fans?      Back to reality though -   :)

 

Benchmark-wise, the ATI R9 270X will typically dominate the 660, but there always seem to be issues with ATI and FSX.

 

As you say ATI + FSX used to be a gamble.

Really need to find someone using the combination I guess.

The 280X and 290X get some good reviews here so hopefully that filters down to the 270X.

 

gb.

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270/270X is basically a 7870 with some tweaks added, keep that in mind when looking for feedback.

 

I've been running AMD GPUs with FS since the 6X00 series, having come over from a GTX 580, and I don't have any regrets. The only feature that nv has that I would like are the combined AA modes, but that's not really a big deal at this level as you'd probably want to stick with pure multi-sampling anyway. The 660 isn't a bad card by any means, but the 270s would be enough of a bump in performance that I wouldn't choose it.

 

Depending on pricing/availability, have a look at a 270 non-X as well, it is the same card with a slightly lowered clock speed. It is a fully enabled Pitcairn GPU otherwise, and unless the pricing is close, you'd end up paying more for a 100Mhz bump in base clock speed and a higher boost clock, but not really much else. At equal prices, I'd definitely go with a 270 non-X with maybe a better cooler, than a 270X with one that's not as good, as an example.

 

I run FSX/P3D on one of my 7950s (CFX disabled, for now) and haven't really had any issues. 7870 (same GPU as 270 as said) was a relatively small step down from 7950 in the bench standings, but is a completely different arch so I can't really comment directly. I did run 6950s prior, but only with FS9.

 

One thing I would mention is that we are in-between WHQL drivers (the last being 13.12), but I have had fine results using 14.3 beta 1.0. YMMV of course, but 13.12s were well received as far as I have seen would be a safe starting point.

 

Good luck.

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Brian and Gboz,

 

Thank you both for your helpful insight and input on this!!!     The 270x definitely seems to have an overall edge on the GTX 660 it would appear.   

 

Brian, have you ever had any FPS issues with clouds when using ATI GPUs with FSX?    

 

Thank you again for all your help guys!

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Thank you both for your helpful insight and input on this!!! 

 

Glad to help.

 

 

Brian, have you ever had any FPS issues with clouds when using ATI GPUs with FSX?    

 

No more than anyone else.

 

I currently run 4xSSAA without issue, though to be fair, I do lock at 24 FPS. That's just what works best for me when balancing panning and on the ground smoothness vs reducing stutters.

 

Another nice feature available to nv cards is the 1/2 Vsync option that NI provides. The only issue though, is that in going with the 660 to gain that feature, you might end up with not enough grunt to keep that 30 FPS consistently. I can't say that for certain though, someone with a 660 would have to weigh in. Just wanted to mention it.

 

Clouds and anti-aliasing are tough on any card. Sure, some cards have the raw horsepower to brute force through most of the challenging situations, but even the very best cards will struggle at times.

 

Whatever your decision, it will be quite an upgrade from your 4870. You may have to stick with MSAA only, and you may even have to limit cloud layers a bit, but overall you should see quite an improvement in image quality. Your average FPS might not change by a whole lot, but should certainly be more stable. 1/2 Vsync and the ability to use combined AA modes are compelling features for nvidia that should be considered, but for me personally, wouldn't be enough to sway me towards a less powerful card overall.

 

I still lean towards the 270, simply because it is more powerful, but I don't think you'll really be going wrong either way.

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