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 Post subject: When do you think more VRAM matters?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 6:45 am 
Smithfield
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I was browsing through Tom's Hardware when I stumbled upon this article, them reviewing a 2GB GeForce GTX 285. Turns out it basically has the same performance across the board.

And so I'm left to wonder, when does more VRAM actually matter? Maybe RAGE will have an Ultra High setting like Doom 3 did that will maybe use lots of VRAM (well, for slightly clearer textures)?


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 Post subject: Re: When do you think more VRAM matters?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 12:18 pm 
Little Foot
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LatiosXT wrote:
I was browsing through Tom's Hardware when I stumbled upon this article, them reviewing a 2GB GeForce GTX 285. Turns out it basically has the same performance across the board.

And so I'm left to wonder, when does more VRAM actually matter? Maybe RAGE will have an Ultra High setting like Doom 3 did that will maybe use lots of VRAM (well, for slightly clearer textures)?


In this case, you will get a big performance boost from 1GB to 2 GB only in a game using <1GB. by that time, the 1GB card is using system RAM (or maybe even page file, yikes!), which is quite a bit slower than graphics memory. the 2GB then, has the extra space to hold it in its own super fast memory.

of course, not even crysis will use more than 1GB, so unless it's dual monitors in nvidia 3D at 2560x1600 each with 16xQAA and maxed out, you won't need much more than 1GB. i'd say 768 is the most youd really need for now.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 12:32 pm 
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same issue came up with the Voodoo2 8 meg vs 12 meg cards. when they came out there was no difference as nothing took advantage of the extra memory. later they did, so ultimately the 12 meg version had extra legs.

nowadays though its kinda a wash, by the time a game needs 2 gigs the current cards with 2 gigs will have long been passed by with faster cards with 2 gigs and the current 2 gig cards wont be able to play those monster games smoothly.

seems more marketing than anything else. might give a card a marginally longer lifespan but realistically most hardcore gamers replace cards every year or so anyway.

just my opinion.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 6:25 pm 
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what the above posters said is basically true. But in modern midrange to high-end cards, moving from 512MB to 1GB has a fairly telling effect on the levels of AA and AF you can run as well. the 4870 1GB is a perfect example, and one of only a few. 512MB of memory bottlenecked the performance of the 4870 in some games, so upping the frame buffer to 1GB eliminated enough bottlenecks to allow performance to match up to Nvidia's shiny new GTX 260 Core 216. It clearly worked, as on newegg the 4870 512MB has been phased out as just as much as the GTX 260 Core 192.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Aug 07, 2009 6:56 am 
Little Foot
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CharBroiled wrote:
same issue came up with the Voodoo2 8 meg vs 12 meg cards. when they came out there was no difference as nothing took advantage of the extra memory. later they did, so ultimately the 12 meg version had extra legs.

nowadays though its kinda a wash, by the time a game needs 2 gigs the current cards with 2 gigs will have long been passed by with faster cards with 2 gigs and the current 2 gig cards wont be able to play those monster games smoothly.

seems more marketing than anything else. might give a card a marginally longer lifespan but realistically most hardcore gamers replace cards every year or so anyway.

just my opinion.


kinda like how they sell geforce 8200 with 1GB or more of RAM. Like, seriously? If you're playing a game that utilizes a gig of RAM, you won't bother to get something that weak. Even if it's GLQuake with super-amazing textures using a gig, you'll still only be able to get a maximum of about 20FPS simply because it can't access all that data that quickly. I'd say an 8200 needs at most 256MB


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 08, 2009 8:50 pm 
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just ask those poor souls who bought the 8800GTS 320MB. :wink:
its all about balance. Right frame buffer for the right card. an 8400GS won't have a problem with 256MB of frame buffer, because the GPU will top out before it fills that memory in 95% of cases. but 320MB on an 8800GTS? you're using main memory and the GPU is running at 50% load... ouch. 320MB drops down from being effective in 95% of cases to only 70% of cases. 4870 512MB? Fine in about 85%ish of cases, so whether the 1GB is worth the extra money or not... depends on how much more the 1GB costs then the 512MB version. Note that all these percentages are pulled out of nowhere, and are just for demonstrative purposes.


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