The title says everything, as far as gaming performance goes I am confident that both of these cards are amazing.
But I'm mostly interested about 3D modelling performance ( yeah, yeah I know... quadro and firepro - no, not gonna happen), but photoshop, illustrator and video editing are important too.
I would go with nvidia, but the r9 390 has 8gb ram with 512bit memory interface - i would imagine it's handy whe you have high polycount models and high res textures. I could not find any usefull information about what should I buy, it seems like it's hard for people to stay on topic. And I guess it also depends on when I buy the card, and what kind of software updates it gets, especially in the future.
The Msi r9 390 gaming 8gb seems like a pretty good choice. The other options are the evga ftw/gigabyte g1 gtx 970. Anything more expensive is out of question, and I'm not interested.
My build so far: i7 4790k, noctua nh-u14s, maximus vii hero, 16gb kingston 2400mhz ram, cm v650 80+ gold, 240gb kingston hyperx ssd, define r5
With respect, I'm mostly intrested in those opinions that are backed up with experince...but any feedback welcomed.
While I can't speak out of experience here is what I do know based on anecdotes from casual users of modelling/editing etc. and the more advanced users:
The increased bandwidth/frame buffer of the R9 390 (8GB vs 4GB) has the potential to be VERY awesome depending on factors such as the ones you already stated (High res, high polycount, etc.). I would also look up for the software you use whether they support CUDA acceleration, use OpenCL or both. This can also make a huge difference.
Assuming both Cuda and OpenCL can be used I would be inclined to spring for the R9 390 as you said you are mostly interested in productivity. In gaming the 970 will be better for 1080p than the 390 and probably even at 1440p but that is something you will have to weigh against each other
Yeah pretty much sums up my thoughs so far. The 8GB ram is what makes the 390 so attractive to me, but I would assume that's not everything. As far as software goes, I want to use Blender for modelling and possibly video editing, and it recently got an OpenCl patch. Though I will probably use more than one software
Anyway, I will search for more info, after all that's what the internet is good for, right? I kind of hoping for the easy solution though...maybe someone here have the answer. And it will be a good card anyway
One of them wrote this: "It's also not the encoder component in general that's discontinued. It's just the old nvcuenc component, the newer nvcenc one works fine. (but since most developers got de-motivated by the performance of the old encoder, only a few think about going through the trouble to write a new encoder based on the nvenc example from the sdk."
So, according to this nvidia would support it, but developers hesitating to switch, maybe in a couple of months... Or maybe they really stopped supporting it since these are gaming cards, and don't expect the general users to take advantage of it in productivity
Honestly, for now at least, the 390 seems like a better option. And I would imagine with new drivers it will be even better
"Currently NVIDIA with CUDA is rendering faster. There is no fundamental reason why this should be so - we don’t use any CUDA - specific features - but the compiler appears to be more mature, and can better support big kernels. OpenCL support is still in an early stage and has not been optimized as much."
That sounds promising, are you able to check that what they say is still the case with the latest GTX 9xx cards and drivers, having flicked through some of the stuff earlier it sounds like there are scenario's with older cards out perform the newer cards when using older drivers with certain software (I guess because of the kind of issues you've identified). It would be great if someone with a 970 could confirm for you that it all works properly!
The same thing with 3ds max and maya, with exception of the 980. I think for modeling both the 970 and the 390 would work just fine. It still sucks though, I expected a bit more...the 900 series is a weird one
Anyway, at least I know that Blender prefers Nvidia...so I guess I'll go with the evga 970 ftw, it's just got cheaper, and for gaming it's damn good