GPU upgrade expectations

TTSProd Website User Posts: 69 Just Starting Out

I'm considering upgrading my GPU from a GTX 660Ti to a GTX 970.  Does anyone know what kind of a performance increase I can expect from this upgrade?

My problem is when working on complex scenes with multiple light sources and multiple particle simulators the whole user interface is so sluggish its almost impossible to work.  Trying to move a parameter slider is useless because the user interface is so slow to react that fine adjustments are impossible and must be typed in.  I've tried breaking up my composite shots into several composite shots and enabling proxys, but it doesn't help the sluggishness of the user interface.  I'm also interested to know if it will have any meaningful effect on render times.   Currently I'm trying to render a complex scene that is 10 seconds long and rendering it takes ~6 hours so I'm looking to improve that as well.

My current setup is

Windows 7

i7 3770k (not overclocked)

16 GB Ram

GTX 660Ti

Any information on performance gains with GTX 970 would be very much appreciated.





  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 19,412 Ambassador

    Looking around at benchmark sites, the 970 is about 3 times faster than the 660ti. However, I without knowing your mobo and RAM I can't completely accurately speculate. However, a general assumption of "at least twice as fast" seems reasonable. 

    Bear in mind on any machine, no matter how fast, adding complex light and particle setups is going to slow things down. Even with proxies performance can be affected by drive speeds since the lossless proxies are using a massive data flow. I think someone else here estimated a proxy at about 400mbps for 1920x1080 @ 29.97 fps. 

    This might seem an odd question, but, can you power through on the 660 till Jan/Feb? Nvidia claims the 2016 cards will be ten times faster than the 2015 cards, instead of the usual 150-200% faster. Might be worth the wait. Or, the 2015 cards might come down, and you could get a 980 with 8GB of RAM for the cost of a 970 with 3GB of RAM since most 3D rendering in Hitfilm is sent to the GPU more vRAM would help! 

  • eTV
    eTV Website User Posts: 44
    edited September 2015

    It really depends on what you are doing, and what you are trying to export. 

    I had a 660 Ti before and upgraded to a GTX 970. I also have a i7 3770K, but dynamically overclocked and 32GB RAM.

    My experience is that you gain the most when rendering 3D-models. One composite shot I had took 20 min to render (it was 10 seconds long). After the upgrade it took between 4-5 minutes. You will see differences in other parts as well, but they might not be as drastic.

    For e.g. Sony Vegas Pro 13 not that much difference at all, even if they claim that they use the GPU. I have however read that they benefit more from AMD GPUs.

  • TTSProd
    TTSProd Website User Posts: 69 Just Starting Out

    Thanks Triem23 and eTV for the thoughtful replies.

    To answer some questions, my mobo is a Gigabyte Z77x UP5 TH with 8GB ram.  I may just power through until the new cards come out as you suggest Triem because I don't want to drop the cash on what might be only a marginal improvement.

    The scene I was speaking of in my original post does contain 5 3d models but only 2 of them are animated.  When I turn off the particle simulators and lights it runs smoothly.

    @eTV Were you referring to AMD cards having improved performance in Vegas specifically?  Or does Hitfilm also operate more efficiently with an AMD GPU?  I don't use Vegas so I'm curious. 

    Incidentally, I overclocked my computer to 4.3 Ghz just to see if I could speed up rendering and the estimated render time went down by almost 2 hours, but it wasn't stable and went blue screen about an hour in.  I know estimates are not overly accurate, but the scene is consistently busy for the whole 10 seconds so I imagine the estimate is reasonably accurate.

    For now I will power through and hope that the next generation of cards will give the boost I'm hoping for!

    Thanks again!


  • eTV
    eTV Website User Posts: 44

    I personally love ASUS products, so both the GPU and the motherboard are of that brand. The good thing is that ASUS has a utility that dynamically overclocks your CPU (if you wish i.e), so when necessary mine is running at 4.2GHz. Of course, the actual speed that you can overclock to depend on a lot of things, what kind of cooler that you have (intel coolers that comes out of the box generally blows (pun intended)), the cabinet (ventilation in this one), cooling paste etc. 

    I can also say that my overclocking is nowhere extreme, it is just the "basic" option of  different alternatives.

    Anyway, ASUS also have another utility to monitor the GPU. When running Sony Vegas Pro 13, I noticed that the program uses about 10% of the GPU, which is close to nothing. After googling and reading a bunch of different forums, it seems like SVP 13 works best with AMD cards. It had something to do with Open CL and not really utilising the Cuda of nVidia. I haven't tried on  a AMD myself, so I have no clue, but this could be the reason why it's mostly using the CPU.

    With regards to Hitfilm - I still can't say anything about the AMD cards. I have seen that the program utilises the GPU though with a load well above 80%.


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