From 6950 to 280x?


For a while I've been thinking the time to upgrade my graphics card may be nigh. Well today I was messing around with some mods on Skyrim and I enabled an ENB, the ENB looked absolutely gorgeous, but it took my framerate down to about 15>20 :(

So I was looking around to see what sorta prices I would be looking at to upgrade and I saw that the 280x was about £225 (~$345), it seemed a good deal to me. I do know that the 280x is basically a 7970 GHz edition with a new sticker on it but it's actually cheaper than the 7970GHz at the moment.

 My exact card is the Sapphire Radeon HD6950 2GB "Dirt 3 Edition".

I've tried looking at benchmarks like 3DMark, but it's all just a bunch of numbers that disagree with eachother, to be honest, every site has different scores, even with same benchmarks and card and clock.

So the question is: How much of an upgrade will this actually be and is it worth the money? Like I said the main reason to upgrade is to be able to play heavily modded Skyrim. I noticed in the review that with ProjectENB on max it got 50fps, to be honest that isn't ideal, how much of an impact on frames does the 'max' preset of ProjectENB have? 5fps? 30? Ideally I would like to play it with a nice ENB and 100 or so (but probably a bit less) mods at a STEADY 60fps.

Of course I also need to know which brand to get, I was looking at the MSI one, but just discovered that it only as one DVI port, and well, I like DVI. Any ideas on that? I've heard you can get a cheapo card like Powercolour and put an aftermarket cooler on it, is that worth it?

My budget can go up a little bit, but... Y'know, I'd prefer not to spend too much more than £250, I'd say £300 is absolute maximum, and only if it's a really good deal.

Thanks in advance for any help.

6950 is still a reasonable gaming card. The 280x would be considerably better for running mods, with the additional Vram.

Meh "Anandtech!"

I chose the standard 7970 since I thought that would be a better comparison than the GHz edition. This is just an indication, with some old benchmarks.

The MSI happens to be a good choice. Not the best, but it is really good for the money.

I think it is definitely worth investing in the new card.

Ok, thanks for the suggestions, do you think a 500 watt power supply is enough for it? the supply is 80+ bronze.

500W is  enough, its tight but it should be okay. msi R9-280X uses arround 250W on full load at stock clocks. However the Sapphire Toxic power draw  can go upto 290+W at full load.

and offcourse a R9-280X is a much better performing card then a 6950.

I'm getting a 7970. this is because you get 3 free games for like an extra $15.