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Pros: Got this card to up the performance in a now aging gaming machine. It does the job. Well. The only reason I could think of for buying a GTX 980 would simply be to waste some money so I could brag to my buddies about how cool I am, but they know that anyway. I run all the games on the highest settings, with an occasional rare exception here and there when GForce Experience recommends them, and I use a 27' monitor (1920 x 1200) so the card is pushing more than a few pixels. Fan whine. What fan whine? I air cool, so I have five 120mm case fans running. They are quiet but not silent, and the card does not add appreciably to the murmur even after extended use. The temp of the card at idle is in the 30s and gets up to the low 40s when I push it. Also, this is shorter than a lot of the competition, so if case space is problematic, this card is your buddy. I do not know why so many people say this is a huge card; perhaps they so not read well. All of the 900 series have some size to them. Another top notch effort from MSI.
Cons: The memory division thing. But that is a problem across the board, and the fault lies squarely with Nvidia for providing misleading specs., not with MSI or the other manufacturers. Come on Nvidia, stop with the "New Math, " and play fair with the consumers.
Other Thoughts: 3770k
ASUS P8 Z77-V Pro
MSI GTX (&) Gaming
Lian Li PC-B25F
Samsung SyncMaster 275T
i.e. one fast old dinosaur.
Pros: I do not trust liquid cooling...I know that view of things flies in the face of current technological expertise, but liquid cooling systems do occasionally leak. Huge problems can result. This CPU cooler does an excellent job of keeping things cool. Right now my chip (a 3770k) is in the low 30s. I have never seen it higher than the high 40s, and I play a lot of FPS games on max and near-max settings. This cooler does a fine job. Nuff said.
Cons: This cooler is a bear to install. Before building my current computer, I watched everything on the net about installing this cooler...probably eight or ten videos. When it came time to actually build the machine, despite the videos, and despite the included instructions...which are about one inch away from totally worthless...I still had problems with the installation. I found myself regretting that there were no rocket scientists living in my neighborhood. I finally got it installed, and I have never had cause for regret. One last thing: I did not use the included paste. I always use Zalman's thermal solution instead of the tube brands like Artic Silver. Zalman's "paints" on, so you never have to worry about an even coating, and painting is easy. Also, it does a great job. I did not have the problems mounting the fan that some have described. I do not know if this was a matter of luck, but for whatever reason, installing the fan was not an issue.
Other Thoughts: If you go with air cooling, if you get this cooler installed without going insane, you are going to be extremely happy with the product. It does what it is intended to do extremely well.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: Tested, fast, flexible. The 4770k beats this CPU in some aspects and loses to it in others. All things taken together, the two are about the same. I bought my 3770K just as the Haswells were coming out. I went with the older technology because it was tested, efficient, and reliable, a proven CPU. I do not regret the choice. Now that the Haswell has established itself, which generation to buy is pretty much a matter of economics. One big plus for me is that it runs so cool: usually in the 30s and moving into the mid 40s when seriously gaming.
Cons: I really have nothing bad to say about the 3700K. It has the power to multitask easily.
Other Thoughts: I game a great deal, so this CPU may be overkill...the 3500K is perhaps the better price point for gamers since hyper threading is not really necessary; however, I like to keep my machines a while and upgrade one component at a time, so the 3700K seemed like a good way to go, working on the assumption that game design will be making use of the hyper threading potential sooner rather than later. Duration of ownership is closer to a year than not.READ FULL REVIEW