Hardware & Technical New Graphics Card Dilemma

This is for my son's PC, an i7 3770 attached to a 1080p 144Hz monitor.

He currently has an nvidia GTX 970, it's an excellent card & the performance is 'enough', but another PC in the household needs an upgrade & rather than buying a new card for that I'm going to move the 970 into it and get my son an upgrade.

The budget is about £350 (GBP) max, I'm looking at a 1070 ti or a cheap 2070, or something used but good (most of his PC was built from used or spare parts).
We're looking for a bit of futureproofing, preferably a silent fan (the 970 has this, they stop completely when it's idling) and better in every way than the 970. It's unlikely to be overclocked, that isn't really a factor but I'd prefer a quiet card (it lives in his bedroom & is often left running AFK farms overnight).

What would you get for the budget?
 
I'd wait for just a little bit.
2070 prices will go down as the new "Super" versions were introduced and they may fall below 400 quid.
Navi cards are also an option, but there I'd also wait, because they launched today and the only avalable cards are the reference models with a blower cooler that really sucks, like all AMD reference cards.
By and large, if you want a 2060-2070 performance you're looking at 350 quid for RTX2060 and Navi 5700 (Navi is slightly better and more future-proof, but again, I'd wait for custom cards). At around 400 quid you have 2060 Super, 2070 (non-super) and Navi 5700XT. All three cards have similar performance according to benchmarks with 2070 being an outlet model therefore offering potential discounts in near future and Navi on the other hand offering the potential of becoming the leader of this budget limit once custom cards are out and drivers start working.

TL/DR: I'd wait till mid August. (That's what I'm doing at least)

(Edit: I'm not really sure, but if you decide to go the mid-tier road (2070, Navi XT, Super cards), your 3770 may become a bottleneck, so maybe check that, too before buying an unnecessarily expensive card that would eventually force you into a new MB and CPU as well. :LOL:)
 
Yeah the new 'super' cards are what's prompting me to consider this now - to buy an older generation just after the new one comes out so I can get more bang for the buck.

The 3770 is staying, but the new card may eventually go into another PC so CPU bottlenecks aren't a concern. I have a 7700 & 1080ti combo and sometimes the CPU is the bottleneck ;)

I think a 2060 would easily come in under budget & so I'm looking to push the envelope a little more than that (hence looking at 1070 tis & 2070s), but £350 is a pretty hard upper limit. He already has enough PSU to handle even a 1080ti, we've tried my card in his PC & it works great (but as you say the CPU becomes the weak link).

I'll look into the navi 5700XT thanks, it's not one I've heard of :)
 
Hahah, yes. Navis released today. Just finished that video. It exactly illustrates my point - don't ever buy AMD reference models with blower coolers! :LOL:
The XT is 400 quid though so not something you would consider, apparently.
But RTX2060 Super and Navi 5700 (And if you're lucky the "old" RTX2070) should fall into your budget.

..or you could for example buy an RTX2060 and use the rest of the money for, I don't know, an SSD or something, so the system feels more upgraded. :)

edit:
This test is probably right up your alley to get a good picture about performance and current pricing. (Doesn't have the 1070Ti and 2070, but the 2070 is basically equal to 2060 Super in performance and 1070Ti is around 2060)
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-idMDjwRgk
 
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One issue is that AMD doesn't want to spend the money required to get good manufacturing tolerances out of the base of their vapor chambers and tries to use a thick graphite thermal pad to compensate for this. They are also coupling the memory to the same vapor chamber, rather than using a separate plate like their older designs...this is bad for memory and GPU temperature.

Price, performance, and power are competitive, but the release day driver situation is not, and the cooler is even worse than I'd have expected for a blower. They've got room for a separate memory plate and a much longer GPU fin stack under that shroud, but they insist on cutting corners. Hopefully there are some decent non-reference designs.
 
One issue is that AMD doesn't want to spend the money required to get good manufacturing tolerances out of the base of their vapor chambers and tries to use a thick graphite thermal pad to compensate for this. They are also coupling the memory to the same vapor chamber, rather than using a separate plate like their older designs...this is bad for memory and GPU temperature.

Price, performance, and power are competitive, but the release day driver situation is not, and the cooler is even worse than I'd have expected for a blower. They've got room for a separate memory plate and a much longer GPU fin stack under that shroud, but they insist on cutting corners. Hopefully there are some decent non-reference designs.
I'm counting on Sapphire with that.
I agree. AMD totally sucks at cooler design and I think they would be better off without it. Just stuff the GPUs to the board partners and let them do the job. :LOL:

btw. That thermal pad - I thought that is just a Vega thing? You know, because thanks to the HBM2 being on the same substrate as the GPU itself, the surface is too uneven for a normal thermal paste. I'd expect Navi to return to the paste as they're using normal memory, now.
 
btw. That thermal pad - I thought that is just a Vega thing? You know, because thanks to the HBM2 being on the same substrate as the GPU itself, the surface is too uneven for a normal thermal paste. I'd expect Navi to return to the paste as they're using normal memory, now.
It's on all the reference Vegas, even those with flush HBM, the Radeon VII, and the new Navi parts.

You can actually see it on the heatsink in the background in the GN video.
 
So as far as my criteria for sub £350 (let's say £300 - £360) and quiet is concerned the 5700 XT doesn't seem to be a good fit, but an Asus/Gigabyte/whatever one may be a better fit than the reference version. To be fair it's likely I'll choose an Nvidia card anyway, I'm not a die-hard fanboy but it's going in my son's PC and Nvidia based cards have an ecosystem I'm already familiar with for occasional troubleshooting & stuff :) That doesn't rule AMD out but it gives them a handicap.

The 2060 Super (6gb) seems fine, but I think a 1070 ti would be a better card in every meaningful way, and assuming a 2070 variant is in budget it should be slightly better still. Does that logic stand up? Or do you think I'd be better off with a 1070 ti from a good brand with a decent, quiet cooler than a cheap 2070?

ETA let's assume I'll be buying in August.
 
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It's on all the reference Vegas, even those with flush HBM, the Radeon VII, and the new Navi parts.

You can actually see it on the heatsink in the background in the GN video.
That's what I was talking about - On the Vegas, the HBM2 is not flush with the GPU so they had to use the pads.
But I didn't notice that the Navi has them too. Oh well, just one more bad decision. I'm not buying the reference model. :)
 
So as far as my criteria for sub £350 (let's say £300 - £360) and quiet is concerned the 5700 XT doesn't seem to be a good fit, but an Asus/Gigabyte/whatever one may be a better fit than the reference version. To be fair it's likely I'll choose an Nvidia card anyway, I'm not a die-hard fanboy but it's going in my son's PC and Nvidia based cards have an ecosystem I'm already familiar with for occasional troubleshooting & stuff :) That doesn't rule AMD out but it gives them a handicap.

The 2060 Super (6gb) seems fine, but I think a 1070 ti would be a better card in every meaningful way, and assuming a 2070 variant is in budget it should be slightly better still. Does that logic stand up? Or do you think I'd be better off with a 1070 ti from a good brand with a decent, quiet cooler than a cheap 2070?
In that case I would also recommend looking up the GTX1660Ti. (It's basically a RTX2060 without ray-tracing features)

Yes, the nVidia's lineup is a one big mess.
 
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