Taking a Look Back at the GTX 680

DooKey

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Apr 25, 2001
Messages
13,597
Everyone who's in the market for a new GPU knows the prices have been inflated due to cryptocurrency mining and shortages of GDDR. Even the low end is inflated and those that want to build a budget gaming rig are feeling the pinch. However, a used video from a few years back might be the way for you to save money and get that rig up and going until prices settle back down. The folks at Techspot have gone back to 2012 and compare a GTX 680 with the GTX 1050 Ti and the results are surprising. They find that the 680 has about the same performance as the 1050 Ti and can be found for much less on places like eBay. If you want to build a budget rig and don't mind used parts this might be the way to go.

Seeing 1050 Ti-like performance from the GTX 680 is certainly acceptable and should handle modern games at 1080p using respectable quality settings. For those poor souls who have forgotten how much the GTX 1050 Ti should cost, I went and looked it up: $139 is the MSRP, which doesn't sound right but it is. However, you'd be doing quite well if you were to get one for $220 today.
 
A GTX680 is about the lowest you can go. While the older cards have the horsepower, you need to be absolute sure they have enough ram for your game to work. I have a GTX 580 and it only has 1.5GB of RAM. That doesn't quite make the cut for a lot of the new games, which all require 2GB+ VRAM. The GTX580 plays GTA:V okay, but you have to play at the lowest settings on 1080p otherwise it uses too much VRAM.


But it looks like a GTX 770 is almost identical to a GTX680, so I bet that one is off a lot of people's radar as far as good performing old cards.
 
Last edited:
A GTX680 is about the lowest you can go. While the older cards have the horsepower, you need to be absolute sure they have enough ram for your game to work. I have a GTX 580 and it only has 1.5GB of RAM. That doesn't quite make the cut for a lot of the new games, which all require 2GB+ VRAM. The GTX580 plays GTA:V okay, but you have to play at the lowest settings on 1080p otherwise it uses too much VRAM.


But it looks like a GTX 770 is almost identical to a GTX680, so I bet that one is off a lot of people's radar as far as good performing old cards.
A 770 and 680 are the same card.
 
Nice article. I'm actually running 3x GTX680 in SLI and in most cases, as long as the game actually supports SLI, total performance is around that of a 980Ti. 2GB VRAM isn't that big of a deal since I still use a 1080P monitor (120hz), usually just means I can't crank up the AA.
 
Which is an advantage to the people who understand that. You can buy an MSI twin frozer 770 for $150 shipped, the lowest GTX 680 is about $175 shipped. Most of the 680s are going for over $200, but you can buy several 770s for around $150.
 
Nice article. I'm actually running 3x GTX680 in SLI and in most cases, as long as the game actually supports SLI, total performance is around that of a 980Ti. 2GB VRAM isn't that big of a deal since I still use a 1080P monitor (120hz), usually just means I can't crank up the AA.

I'm curious if you have ever checked the idle power consumption on that setup. I know they were bringing it down each iteration, but don't know specifics for that era. I remember using 8800GTX SLI and those idled at 75W regardless of what you were doing, so it was 150W to have a pair of them in a computer just to browse the web. I think the 580s were still a bit idle hungry, but nothing like the old cards. The one big thing with the latest 10 series is even the high end cards draw almost nothing when idling.

EDIT: I'll just answer my own question. I'd say a good estimate is about 11W per card on those. So you'd be at around 33W or so at idle for just the cards. That's not too bad as my HD5870 alone was about 25W for a single card at idle. The 6xx series took another big leap over the 5xx series and it would appear that idle of your 3 680s is about the same as 1 580.

http://www.guru3d.com/articles-pages/geforce-gtx-680-sli-review,4.html

https://www.anandtech.com/show/5699/nvidia-geforce-gtx-680-review/19
 
Last edited:
Still rocking a GTX 690 in one of my pc's... which is like 2x680's. My main beef with it running nowadays is that it's limited to HDMI 1.4a so running at 4k for desktop use will be with a limited color gamut. 1080p is good to go though.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Rahh
like this
Everyone who's in the market for a new GPU knows the prices have been inflated due to cryptocurrency mining and shortages of GDDR. Even the low end is inflated and those that want to build a budget gaming rig are feeling the pinch. However, a used video from a few years back might be the way for you to save money and get that rig up and going until prices settle back down. The folks at Techspot have gone back to 2012 and compare a GTX 680 with the GTX 1050 Ti and the results are surprising. They find that the 680 has about the same performance as the 1050 Ti and can be found for much less on places like eBay. If you want to build a budget rig and don't mind used parts this might be the way to go.

Seeing 1050 Ti-like performance from the GTX 680 is certainly acceptable and should handle modern games at 1080p using respectable quality settings. For those poor souls who have forgotten how much the GTX 1050 Ti should cost, I went and looked it up: $139 is the MSRP, which doesn't sound right but it is. However, you'd be doing quite well if you were to get one for $220 today.


Holy crap.

I bought a 1060 last summer, for just a bit more than that.
 
I've still got a couple GTX 680's floating around the house I use from time to time. They are surprisingly powerful even today.
 
I still have 3 GTX 680s that I've not touched when I built this sig rig in the summer of 2016 going to 2 1080s. Wow what a difference even at 1080p resolution, it was the single biggest jump I've ever made in GPU performance. I doubt that once someone has made that kind of jump they'd be happy with something like a 680 even though it's still somewhat serviceable.
 
I doubt anyone would be very happy with a 680 2GB card these days. It would have to be a 4GB card, and those are still going for $240-260 on ebay.
 
Still rocking a GTX 690 in one of my pc's... which is like 2x680's. My main beef with it running nowadays is that it's limited to HDMI 1.4a so running at 4k for desktop use will be with a limited color gamut. 1080p is good to go though.

I'm running 3x1080p on my 680 in and out of NV surround and it does ok. Can't match the 980 ti but no biggie.

It does have 4gb which may be what is making it work.

Of course only 75% of 4k.
 
Got a 670 and a 970 that do the job pretty well, not sure of all the craziness, flagships are overrated unless you are 4king it imho.
 
Got a 670 and a 970 that do the job pretty well, not sure of all the craziness, flagships are overrated unless you are 4king it imho.

Even at 1080p though you get higher framerates that drive 120/144 Hz monitors very well with higher end cards.
 
Or you have triple screens. Or you want 120+ FPS at 1080. Or you want to maintain 60+ FPS at 1440.

Sure, if all you're comparing is 60hz 1080p then a 1070 or even a 1060 would suffice, but there are several reasons why you'd have a flagship without touching 4k.
 
I'd say that my 770 gtx still runs perfectly well on any non vr game.

I do have to say that my 1080 ti (which i just sold for more than i bought it back in july) ran almost every game perfectly any didn't have any problems in VR. Plus for the majority of the time it ran cooler and probably used the same wattage as my 770 gtx.
 
I am still rocking i7920 @ 4.0 asus p6t deluxe with 680s in SLI on my spare rig. Plays all the games I like with out issue.
 
Never did the 600 series, hell didn't even do the 500 series, I simply went from 400 to 700 because... yeah life.
 
Still have mine in a backup rig as well. Card has been good for what 8+ years now. Mine is a Pallit Gtx 680 with a massive air cooler attached.
fermi-grill-jpg.jpg
 
Holy crap.

I bought a 1060 last summer, for just a bit more than that.

Same here... glad i didnt wait...was on the fence between 1060 and rx480.. but the 480 was a power hog and for $39 more the 1060 was an easy choice. GPU prices are insane.. fricken miners
 
I just replaced my son's 2x eVGA GeForce GTX 680 FTW 4 GBs with a 1080TI, and I was wondering what to do with them. eBay, here I come.
 
The GTX 680 was the first chip from Nvidia to get the middle chip top tier pricing....
 
Thought I got a good deal on a Gigabyte Windforce GTX 780 Ghz edition off a member here for all of $60 shipped, but it ended up being dead. :(

Outputs VGA fine, but the moment you try to install drivers it goes to shit.

But slightly more on topic... I've picked up a few other cards here used recently because I'm scared that if my GTX 1080 dies or something I'll be left with nothing remotely powerful to use. It's GPU paranoia. I'm still keeping an eye out for a cheap 9 series card so I'll have something else capable of outputting 4K/60 at 4:4:4 chroma - basically HDMI 2.0 - which didn't get implemented until the 950/960/970/980.
 
A 770 and 680 are the same card.

This is a great article. Yup, still loving my 2GB 770 but I don't chase pixels or 144fps. I'm happy at 1080p/60. Games from 2014 are cheaper anyway ;)

Also, it needs to be said that folks used to tweak around here. Now it seems if you can't set everything to Ultra and forget it, the card is POS. Pft.

That being said, if my 770 were to die, I'm very worried.
 
Why wouldn't you simply use Displayport?

cause I joined the large format TV bandwagon a long time ago.. no DP available. As far as using an active DP adapter to HDMI.. doesn't work with Kepler and below... or I haven't found any adapters that give me 4:4:4 4K/60 on it
 
Still rocking a GTX 690 in one of my pc's... which is like 2x680's. My main beef with it running nowadays is that it's limited to HDMI 1.4a so running at 4k for desktop use will be with a limited color gamut. 1080p is good to go though.

This is the same that I have and overclocked. Still runs everything new and does pretty well at it.
 
But it looks like a GTX 770 is almost identical to a GTX680, so I bet that one is off a lot of people's radar as far as good performing old cards.

A 770 is what I replaced when I got my 1070. It's still being used by my son in his gaming PC. The only issue will be the low amount of memory in the future.
 
Wow... I feel outdated... I'm still on a 660Ti, in a Dell precision 490 (dual Xeon E5335s). With the state of cards today I'd be tempted to get a second 660ti and go SLI but sadly the P490 can't do that either :/
 
Still have a couple of 780s in spare gaming rigs. They still play things nicely at 1080p (GW2, Overwatch, TF2, etc.)
 
I'm just building a friend of mine a rig with left over parts, what do you think would be better, a 780 or a 970?
 
I still have a 4GB GTX670 in the old i7-870 system that I gave to my son. It still runs nearly everything perfectly fine at 1080p; newer AAA games usually at medium-high and older games at max settings.
 
I'm just building a friend of mine a rig with left over parts, what do you think would be better, a 780 or a 970?

970 if he can swing it. At best the 780 will match the 970 but in certain newer games the 970 should be quite a bit faster while being more power efficient, quieter, and cooler.
 
What I also liked about the article is that they also included their numbers from the 580 tests as well (not to mention that 580 article link). The interesting part is that back in October, 2016, after the 1050's introduction, I had wondered how the performance of the 1050 card (Low end gamer, 2016) compared to the x80 card. The answer in that thought experiment corresponds roughly with this hard evidence.

Unfortunately, as of this writing, the CyberMiners didn't even leave the 1050Ti unscathed.
 
Back
Top