AMD Drops Radeon R9 Nano Price To $849

AMD's Radeon R9 Nano was the most interesting card in the company's most recent graphics refresh -- not because it was the most powerful (that'd be the watercooled R9 Fury X), but because it was the most efficient, and used its power in a tiny footprint that would fit a Mini ITX motherboard. Now, it's had a pretty significant price cut in Australia.

Dropping from its original $1099 manufacturer recommended price, which was significantly higher in the real world after companies like XFX made their own iterations and retailers like PC Case Gear added their own middleman handling and shipping fees, the new official price for the R9 Nano is $849. We're still seeing the original $1100-plus price tags all around the 'net, but some retailers have reacted; Mwave, for example, has a Sapphire card priced at $799.

$849 is a much more reasonable price for the Nano. It's still a long way off the card's new US RRP of US$499 (approximately AU$709), but it's more in the ballpark for the R9 Nano's mid- to high-end performance level versus Nvidia's GTX 980 and 980 Ti -- especially in the 4K and above-4K resolutions where AMD is currently dominating, especially when it comes to DirectX 12 performance. Until AMD's Polaris and Nvidia's Pascal next-generation cards come out in the second half of this year, the R9 Nano is still one of my favourite GPUs. [AMD]


Comments

    Graphics cards seem to be getting smaller and smaller.

    I remember when they were like a size 12 shoe, sporting three fans, 4 PCI-E connectors, and a 3kg heat sink.

      And up until I sold my rig recently, I had a HD6990. Bloody ridiculous that thing was...

      We're just returning to the good old days of small GPU's. I still remember the stupidly tiny heat sink and fan that came on my Riva TNT.

      Last edited 23/01/16 4:34 pm

      Have you seen an R9 390? It only barely fits in one PC case in the household, and you can't put anything in the third slot down.

      The nano is a specialty.

    nice little card.....

    be good if it was 450 but then again with AMDs financials

    I'm looking to put together a $1500 or less (preferably less) desktop that can run the most demanding games at 1080p. Just the desktop, not the monitor or sound or keyboard and mouse. Im in central vic and can pick up from melbourne if needed, or will be good for delivery. im used to nvidia, but happy to go amd if they benchmark better at that price point. Anyone know where I should be looking or can help me put together a decent comp?

      Honestly mate, your best bet is to compare prices from retailers on www.staticice.com.au then read a builder's guide and do it yourself. Also look at www.logicalincrements.com, they've got full builds constantly updated on their site and they can show you AUD prices.

      If you run into issues, Google is your best friend.

      Good luck with the build!

      (Sorry about length, but I hope this is helpful.)

      Well, I usually shop on mwave (if local MSY or PLE pricing isn't up to snuff at the time). They do pre-built, but really it's easy enough to DIY these days and you'll save some $$.

      I also shop on Amazon if the dollar is doing OK. Just got to be sure the stuff your buying has global warranty, then you can end up saving a pretty penny. I saved over $100 on my 970 when the dollar wasn't as bad and picked up a 4790k in the black Friday sale for around $100 cheaper than local pricing. The shipping isn't much more than shipping within Au either.

      Lastly, for $1500 you can build a neat rig. I could put down some recommendations if you like, but for now I'd say this (Sorry for length):

      1. CPU: Shop Intel.
      AMD don't make any 'high end' CPU's at current. Their top tier CPU's can be bested by i5's. A Haswell/ Haswell-E or Skylake i7 is definitely in your budget and some games, like the Witcher 3, are starting to like the Hyper threading. That said, an i5 would save quite a bit of cash and MOST games won't notice the difference. Performance between Haswell and Skylake is very close, even DDR4 isn't all that much faster than a good set of DDR3 RAM. Haswell-E will have better multi core performance but has a lower single core clock speed. It's also the most costly. Also keep in mind that Skylake is a little buggy ATM and not all motherboard manufacturers have updated their bios to fix the crashing issues under some workloads. And get a cheap but good cooler like the Coolermaster Hyper X212.

      2. GPU: ATM, Shop nVidia.
      A lot could have been said about the value aspect of AMD in the past, but these days their cards are hotter and louder than nVidia, but much more importantly, their drivers are all over the place. They are more CPU demanding and end up hampering your GPU performance (See the Digital Foundry on the issue). Just recently one of their drivers melted cards! My current media PC with an AMD card also has many graphical artifacts, a common issue with the LATEST drivers. GTA V's minimap flickers for example. Bottom line: Even if you get a good AMD card, you have no way of knowing what they are going to do with their drivers next, and most of the time their on paper performance isn't any where close to their actual benchmark scores because of the bottlenecked drivers.

      3. Buy a decent power supply.
      Something like an i7 and 970 isnt't all that power hungry (a good 550watt should do) but shop a little higher for longevity. 600-650w is a good place to be for a single GPU at current. Shopping Corsair, something like the cheaper but still good RMx line, is a good safe bet.

      4. 16gb of ram.
      It's the current sweet spot. More is fine too, but realistically you wont see much of a performance difference. 8gb will see some games, like BF4 with later DLC maps, Arkham Knight, etc. perform poorly or causes stutter.

      Lastly.
      The new line of nVidia cards are rumored to come out mid year. People are getting excited for it and it could be a massive jump in performance. But a lot of the times, the hype is bigger than the improvement. Still, keep this in mind while shopping around. Be comfortable with what you spend now so that when the new line comes out mid year, you still feel that you got good price to performance regardless.

      Bonus round:
      If you want GTX 970-980 performance levels: Buy the 970. They perform too similarly, especially some of the better clocked 970's, to justify the (IMO massive) price difference. The 960-970 are also the current 1080p sweet spot. The 970 can even do 1440p quite well ATM.

      Edit:
      Bonus bonus round:
      Something that I forgot but remembered on my run: If unsure or your budget is getting tighter and tighter, spend more on the GPU than CPU. The GPU is where most of the gaming grunt is going to end up coming from. E.G: You'll get better gaming performance from an i5 and 970 than an i7 and 960, though the systems would be of a very similar cost.

      Last edited 23/01/16 1:39 pm

        Umm, there's something seriously wrong with your choice of graphics card being there's absolutely no suggestion of AMD's offerings.
        That being said anything under Nvidia's 908Ti you go with AMD because they are overall better and cheaper than Nvidia's.
        You mention driver's but that's a myth and you're living in the past, if anything Nvidia have better day one drivers but they get overtaken in terms of performance over time for example the 290 was supposed to compete with the 780, now it's on par with the 780Ti. Plus Nvidia have had more issues with windows 10 than AMD.
        You also say that AMD drivers have melted their cards, there were issues with fan speeds which caused cards to shut themselves down but there hasn't been one proven case of a card actually being destroyed from it unlike Nvidia who has actually destroyed cards on two separate occasions from drivers.
        Lastly you say AMD's cards are hot and inefficient, that's only if you buy reference cards and no one buy's reference cards.

        Sorry but I gotta bring balance to the force with all this misinformation you're serving.

          I used to recommend AMD for budget builds but unfortunately the driver issues are not a myth, nor are they in the past.

          Digital Foundry have tested them among various CPU's and have found that they have poor multi threading support and lead to a bottleneck for their own GPU performance. Mantle helped this to a degree but was never supported widely enough. DX12 may fix it, I hope it does as AMD need to be a competitor again to help bring down nvidias pricing, but we can't really rely on something that's not out yet. (I'll try and find the article and edit it in here, I'm sure you'll find it interesting because you seem to take interest in tech. Found it, was the DX12 one: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-2015-why-directx-12-is-a-gamechanger)

          Also, I'd like to point out that the non reference cards are hotter underneath their 3 slot (!!!) coolers than nVida cards. It's why they need such extravagant coolers.

          Game support is also hit and miss with the AMD team. Some games run abysmally on AMD for no apparent reason. AMD is also worse at tessellation (ATM), and as you say yourself, their game ready drivers are normally later than nvidias, leading to slower availability of crossfire support etc as well.

          I'd also like to redeem myself by adding that I might have recommended AMD if their budget were tighter, but even then something like the 750ti would be a better bet than the comparable AMD card (360) because you know what you are getting. With the AMD card some games will perform as you would expect, and others worse because of poorer optimization and the driver overhead.

          I have an old 7870 in a spare pc and, yeah, the value proposition was always good and yes, I bought it when AMD were having their last 'revival' and just released their new drivers back then. But I'd be lying if I didn't admit that, from experience, the drivers are not up to nVidias (Although I do like the neat tessellation factor option), and yeah, some games just don't run as well on the AMD card as comparable nVidia cards. And no, unfortunately the games optimized for AMD don't show as big a lead on the 7870 as the nVidia card for games that run poor on AMD. And no, the AMD card is not as useful for as many GPU accelerated tasks that aren't games.

          Consistent Fallout 4 performance across the run of play relies heavily on the CPU and AMD's driver has a higher overhead, leading to frame-rate drops. For that reason, the GTX 750 Ti once again gets the nod. - http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-2015-the-best-pc-hardware-for-fallout-4-4023

          What I'm trying to say is: It's not balanced to recommend an inferior product to someone who can afford better. I hope AMD up their game, I really do, but right now I feel that nvidia is that safer option to recommend to people buying. I'm in a position where I have had experience with modern nVidia and AMD cards of varying budgets and felt I could recommend something based on the budget given. For $1500 or less an i5/7 and nvidia 960 or 970 are looking good and are all leaders in their price to performance categories.

          That's not misinformation, that's just a recommendation based on the budget given, my experience, and current state of AMD's affairs.

          Last edited 24/01/16 12:47 pm

            Why do you keep saying AMD isn't competitive when it clearly is?

            I never mentioned CPU's, you did that and no one said that you have to pair an AMD CPU with their GPU. Hell, I'm running an Intel CPU with my AMD GPU.

            Now you mention DX12 where Nvidia is weaker than AMD, Nvidia have to do it on a software level while AMD do it on a hardware which is why their GCN architecture is denser and therefore hotter than Nvidia's.
            Case in point; http://www.extremetech.com/gaming/212314-directx-12-arrives-at-last-with-ashes-of-the-singularity-amd-and-nvidia-go-head-to-head

            The AOTS benchmark only used 5% async shaders and if you look around a 290x becomes on par with a 980Ti. This is the only generation of Nvidia GPU's that are more efficient because they stripped out a lot of hardware features in favour of having an advantage in DX11.

            I think it's funny you mention Fallout 4 as an example of why AMD are worse, but you don't mention Nvidia's blackbox middleware called 'Gameworks.'
            AMD nor even the developer to an extent cannot alter the code to GW hence why there tends to be a crippling amount of Tessellation in certain games like in fallout 4, Crysis 2, The witcher 3 etc.
            Example; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYL07c74Jr4

            That example is Crysis 2 where there's uneeded amounts of tessellation in the ocean and on concrete blocks etc. AMD is weaker at tessellation but it doesn't mean they can't do it, they have even placed a setting in their drivers to reduce the tessellation in games which ironically Nividia doesn't allow for their own cards.

            The 960 and 970 aren't leaders in their price to performance section, the 380 is far better than the 960 non overclocked and when overclocked, the 390 is better than the 970 also.
            960 vs 380 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTpNZEW31G0
            380 vs 970 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9cKZiJw6Pk
            You fail to mention that the 970 only has 3.5Gb of usable RAM because the partitioned 0.5Gb is far too slow to be used, another 'feature' courtesy of Nvidia.

            Again you're spreading misinformation to people who can't be bothered to look up these things for themselves. In reality the only 2 cards I would recommend overall would be the 980Ti for the Top end and the 390 for the mid-range but really there's no point in getting anything right now because the New 14nm cards are scheduled to be released around the middle of this year.

              I'm not saying AMD aren't competitive and I didn't bring up DX12 as a pro or a con, the article was about AMD's abysmal driver overheads with a side note on DX12. You have read into that on your own. I have also not side stepped the 970's ram issue, I've only said that it is not relevant at 1080p and even 4k if you sli 970's. The issue was blown out of proportion and if you look for legitimate benchmarks trying to show off the slowdown they all end the same way: The 970 cannot run the games at the settings required to fill the memory in the first place. I.E It's not an issue unless you were trying to run the game at well under playable settings even for a fully fledged 980! Also, the 970 has greater overclocking headroom than the 390 (Although no two cards will overclock the same) You do realize who looks to be spreading misinformation by not knowing that right? I've also talked about the new lineup in my posts... Have you been reading them or just nitpicking through them to argue based off a knee jerk reaction?

              Now, onto the real stuff. Both companies offer something in their line ups but AT THIS PRICE BRACKET, WITH THE CURRENT STATE OF THINGS, the nvidia card (again) at this price point, is more compelling than the AMD card. From more money than for the 970 I would have recommended a Nano over a 980 (Non ti), but I didn't because I wouldn't recommend a ~$800 GPU AT THIS PRICE POINT.

              In reality the only 2 cards I would recommend overall would be the 980Ti for the Top end and the 390 for the mid-range

              Pretty ridiculous since there are price points in between those. I would recommend, in order of budget:

              1) 970 (As it TRADES BLOWS WITH THE 390 FOR CHEAPER, WITH BETTER DRIVERS and more reliable driver release schedules! AMD's game ready drivers for Tomb Raider are not out yet btw, nVidia's are, a familiar story as every time a major game is released.)
              2) The R9 Nano
              3) The 980ti.

              If you are shopping below the 970 I feel that's where AMD's cards come into play until you start hitting the lower end (Under $200 for a GPU), in which case you'd be better off with a 750ti or something because at that point the i3 you'll likely be picking for a CPU won't keep up with AMD's drivers! Unless you are building a FX6300 build, then AMD away because the core count should negate some of the driver overhead.

              Recommending parts for a PC is so much more than what you make out. Different price brackets have different rules and my suggestions have not been fanboyish. I have experience building and gaming at low and high end price points with AMD, Intel, nvidia and ATI, to base my views off, which you can feel free to disagree with, but if I were you I would probably keep it in mind as we are always learning and different points of view can be enlightening.

              You keep making out as if AMD are the only ones with cost effective options under the 980ti, and keep sidestepping the facts I have shown you about AMD's drivers, calling it misinformation. Disagree with me all you like, but misinformation it is not. At most it is an opinion with which you don't agree.

              By the way, Digital Foundry's latest article is a face off for Tomb Raider on PC and guess what! The 970 and 390 trade blows, as usual! This time the 970 is in the lead most of the time and the 390 in the lead in certain interiors. All by ~5FPS either way! On top of that, the 970 does so while using less CPU overhead, less power, with more timely and reliable driver releases (AT CURRENT, as I have said), better tessellation support and a lower price! AND Right now you get Tomb Raider with the purchase of a nVidia card.

              Side note which can come into consideration: If you ever intend to do Adobe work or tasks other than gaming, CUDA is more supported than GCN in most programs. Even games engines like Unity have a massive nVidia bias, probably somewhat due to Unity's massive CPU overhead fighting with AMD's driver overhead. That said, bit coin mining likes AMD cards, but is currently a little over saturated.

              'Only recommend the 980ti and the 390'. What bollocks. Probably shows how little experience you have building PC's using BOTH VENDORS over the years and at current.

              Last edited 28/01/16 1:29 pm

                Let's go through this point by point;

                - I already said Nvidia is on the ball when it comes to day one drivers so your accusation of my sidestepping drivers in that regard is unfounded.

                Also, the 970 has greater overclocking headroom than the 390 (Although no two cards will overclock the same) You do realize who looks to be spreading misinformation by not knowing that right?

                - The 970 does have more overclocking headroom than the 390 but they are different architectures, just because it pushes more MHz doesn't mean the corresponding increase will be linear between the two cards or did you ignore the link I posted comparing the two of them? Now you're assuming I didn't know about overclocking plus it makes your 'runs more efficiently' argument moot when you overclock.

                And no, the AMD card is not as useful for as many GPU accelerated tasks that aren't games.

                - Moot point, not talking about buying graphics cards to not play games.

                1) 970 (As it TRADES BLOWS WITH THE 390 FOR CHEAPER

                - Please, Nvidia are known to be more expensive compared to AMD, the cheapest 970 I can find goes for $438AU, the cheapest 390 goes for $424AU so another moot point. At least we can agree that the 380>960.

                By the way, Digital Foundry's latest article is a face off for Tomb Raider on PC and guess what! The 970 and 390 trade blows, as usual!

                -That's funny, they trade blows with Nvidia having optimized drivers and AMD not having any drivers for the game. Guess what, when AMD do bring out their drivers it'll put them ahead further reinforcing why it's a better buy. Although PCPer show that the 390 is overall better http://www.pcper.com/reviews/Graphics-Cards/Rise-Tomb-Raider-AMD-and-NVIDIA-Performance-Results/Adding-GTX-970-and-R9-390

                I have experience building and gaming at low and high end price points with AMD, Intel, nvidia and ATI, to base my views off

                - That's anecdotal which doesn't disprove the overall quality of AMD cards.

                Ultimately most people don't upgrade every year and historically AMD cards are known to get better as time goes on while the Nvidia counterparts lose what little edge they even had, case in point; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O7fA_JC_R5s

                Really at the end of the day If you're not upgrading every year I would recommend AMD over Nvidia because why would you want to pay more for less over time?

                Last edited 01/02/16 1:45 pm

          As the owner of an AMD gpu, my mates equivalently priced, lower specked nVidia gpu constantly outperforms my gpu. In fact, I recently got a laptop with an equivalent nVidia gpu and that even out performs my AMD gpu.

          Having owned an AMD gpu, I cannot and will not recommend one to others at this stage. When I bought mine it was still an option in terms of price to performance, but today I would not buy one again.

          BTW, I have an R9 270 atm, and my laptop with a 960m outperforms it in gpu tasks.

          If all you can recommend for anything under a 980ti is an AMD chip, then there's something wrong with your logic. Amd have good options to consider, but nVidia have PLENTY of affordable options too.

        A point to factor in whether to get the shop to assemble it vs assembling it yourself is that if they assemble your machine, you have the statuatory warranty for the whole machine. If you build it yourself it only covers the individual parts and if anything is fault (say, it won't power up after the first day, like what happened to my brother recently) you'll likely be out of pocket at least for the diagnosis.

          Yup.

          Most of my points are still applicable if you are having a machine built, and I hope they are helpful.

          I just wanted to point out that it is much cheaper and, especially if you are ordering online, whole system warranty may not be worth the additional cost + postage + less customizability / may hamper ease of future expandability (without fear of voiding the warranty), etc etc. Each to their own though, it's not the worst thing you can do. (i.e.buy prebuilt from jb etc with the intention of gaming)

          Also, although not always the case, in the slim chance that something is DOA, diagnosing the issue and having just that part replaced is often quicker than sending the entire system back and waiting for them to diagnose it.

          If buying fully built, I'd also recommend buying local and picking up. Just my 2c.

          Last edited 23/01/16 3:16 pm

        I tend to look at thing a little differently. First I decide what kind of rig I want based on the use cases. Silent, power efficient, less space consuming, but powerful as can be.

        I'd then fix my budget. The highest end GPU/CPU have a large premium that just doesn't make up for the benefit. They are also victim to steep price fluctuations than the mainstream ones.

        When I was young I used to go for the highest end whenever I had the money. Now, (maybe with the exception of VR), every application I use, and the quality I expect to experience (1080p) in most games can be delivered easily with mainstream parts and an SSD.

        After I fix the budget I can also decide which parts I need to spend the most money on. Where to allocate your budget depends on your use case scenario. For example one of the most important parts that go under appreciated is the monitor. It is the window into everything else.

        I'd also make use of FreeSync/ GSync @ 1080p if that fits in my budget. I would prioritize that over 4K for gaming although for productivity applications I would choose a large 4K screen. It's important for 4K screens to be large.

        I will basically approach it from a real-world benefit stand point, and focus on what I want and the cheapest and most reliable means of achieving that. I am not choosing the world champions team here.

        This approach is much more time consuming but interesting to me. Lot's of research but lots of fun.

        Last edited 25/01/16 10:46 am

          Pretty much how I do it too, I was just offering some guidelines from my experiences and the current state of the market/ the budget given (eg. They already have a screen etc)

      https://au.pcpartpicker.com/user/pcbuilder/
      you can also try this site for help on parts.

      the amd r9 390 is a great choice for a card at the moment. 8GB of ram for $489 compared to 3.5 +.5 in a GTX 970 for $449 (MSY Prices here as they are generally the cheapest on average)
      go for a mid range Motherboard, dont go the most expensive, but dont get the cheapest.
      i'd question the 16GB RAM, you'll be fine with 8GB and you can always add to it later down the track if you have to.
      SSD is nice to have just for OS and some of your programs like office and chrome and whatever other standard programs you use. MSY sell a sandisk plus 120GB ssd for $62 which is a great deal for an OS focused drive.
      then go for a WD Black 1 or 2TB drive for your games - $104 for the 1TB (i have about 100 games installed on a 1TB drive ranging from 80GB game size to a few hundred MB in game size) it should be more than enough. then if you want a seperate drive for photos and files and movies and stuff you can pick up a WD green or blue pretty cheap. OR get the 2TB Black and partition it - unless you have a shit tonne of movies you plan on storing.
      you probably dont have to go for current i5 CPU and DDR4 - its nice, but you can save a fair bit of coin by sticking with something like an i5 4690 and ddr3- it will give you more than enough grunto for 1080p gaming and you wont be unhappy.

      but most of all - do lots of research and reading on forums and dont rush your purchases - look for arguments on both sides of the fence. knowledge is your friend. take time to learn a little bit about the parts and you'll be able to make your choices much easier.

        Good points, although vram isn't the only important factor, especially at 1080p. I also agree that 8GB system RAM will get you through most things perfectly fine. But it's really not that much more expensive to get a 16GB kit and be done with it, especially not with this budget IMO. Many games are starting to see poorer performance on 8GB, especially if you are rocking Windows 10, and trends like that tend to continue. Things seldom get less demanding.

        Last edited 25/01/16 2:04 pm

          the reason i said the amd is games like GTA V can really chew VRAM if you enable certain settings. so you may as well go the 8gb for $40 more over the nvidia offering of a similar price point.
          im not entirely convinced about the jump to 16GB of RAM though, although ive been running 12GB for the last couple of years just because i couldnt be assed removing my 4gig kit from under my cpu heat sync while installing my new 8gb kit.

            Yeah, you probably won't see the need for more RAM because you are already running 12GB, which is not really an easy number to shop for, which is why I recommended 16GB. Probably what caused that misunderstanding.

            Myself and all of my mates have been upgrading from 8GB of RAM within the last year because 8GB just isn't enough anymore and 12GB is frankly just not that common of a config because of the dual channel boards. (pop out one of your sticks and try run Arkham knight or BF4 with the DLC maps. It's not fun. BF got sustained drops from 60fps to 20fps until my mate upgraded only his ram, just as an example)

            With that cleared up, it's true that GTA likes it's V-RAM (although not as much as modded skyrim) but with the extended options enabled the GPU is going to be stressed more than it's V-RAM.

            With the V-RAM limits disabled you can still get very playable frame rates with the extended options etc on (consuming over 3GB V-RAM at 1080p) on a powerful 2GB card.

            Add that to nVidia's new compression and V-RAM just isn't as important as some make it out at this point, especially at 1080p, where 2-3GB is the sweet spot. 4GB+ is really for 1440p and 4K. Digital Foundry tested this with a 960 2GB and 4GB, showing minimal gains if any, and that was at resolutions higher than 1080p.

            I'd say, if you would like to recommend the AMD card for 1080p gaming because it's cheaper, then that's groovey, but the additional vram probably wont impact gaming performance at that resolution. Especially when GTA is one of the games which is known to run worse on AMD than nVidia, and the current AMD drivers have been producing artifacting in GTA V for some people (I'm unfortunately one of them).

            Last edited 25/01/16 2:47 pm

    Let's be clear amd donates at 4k when compared to a reference 980ti at stock clocks. An over clocked 980ti smokes a fury x at 4k. That being said the r9 nano looks like a good buy when compared to a 980.

      Yup. Probably cause the 980 is over priced vs the 970 or 980ti. Also, 4K, unfortunately, remains an untamed beast for single card rigs though TBH.

        Yeah the price of the 980 is ridiculous at this price point it would be silly not to get the nano.

          Thanks to all the replies. My thoughts were: gtx970, i5 6400, b150m bazooka motherboard (this is my weak point, I dont know much about motherboards), 2x4gb ddr4, 1tb hd, 650x psu, a $100 case (again, weak point), windows 10. I might put in a disk drive as well, that should only be $30 or so. Good/bad build? Can it be modified?

            The motherboard is one of the most important parts of you pc so I would invest in the best one that I can. The b150 is the lowest level with the most limited feature set. The way I build my systems is I get a CPU and motherboard combination that will keep me going for 4 to 5 years and then I upgrade my GPUs every 3 years. Do a bit of research but I'd get the H170 chipset if you aren't going to overclock or run sli. Otherwise I would just bite the bullet and get the Z170.

            Get an SSD (250gb) as a boot up drive and the 1tb HD as your storage drive. you can also store your favourite games on the ssd to speed up loading times.

            Your PSU is definitely important (DO NOT GET A CHEAP ONE). The 650 PSU is overkill for you system you could get away with a 500 watt psu. Make sure you PSU is a Tier 1 PSU (google toms hardware PSU tier list).

            Expensive cases allow you to route your cables better so the system looks neater. I would recommend the Fractal Design cases (I use an R4) they are easy to work in and are very quiet. NZXT also make good cases (the S340 is 109 at pccasegear).

            Your build will be great for 1080p gaming at around 60fps but you won't be able to overclock your CPU so that may mean you upgrade earlier. If you got a better motherboard and CPU (K series) you would ensure that you won't have to upgrade for longer. I always use ASUS motherboards but each to their own.

            When you choose an nVidia GPU, and if you expect to use features like Adaptive Sync, you pay a premium on the monitor in the form of G-Sync.

            Last nVidia card I used was the GTX680, switching from an AMD HD5870. Both my monitor and TV became immediately incompatible with nVidia 3D Vision. Both of which by the way were working fine with the HD5870 and Open3D. You can try to get it working, after all the money I had already spent on everything, but you will have bad experience.

            Stereoscopic 3D wasn't a high priority for me, but it would have been nice to have the option not taken away from me just because I wasn't buying everything from their club.

            I would love nVidia to compete on a fair playing field but they no longer have the financial nor the market incentive to do so. AMD as a company have contributed in many ways to the industry with open technologies (AMD64 etc). But I believe they need to bring that benefit down to the consumer. Extreme performance at non-extreme price point and not tying customers to their own endorsed products is where AMD can shine.

            Looks good. The Bazooka is an MSI board if I'm thinking straight, and those are proving to be very good with Skylake, you also shouldn't need more than the b150 unless you are really looking for the additional features. Linus has run tests showing that, with Intel putting more and more of the workings onto the CPU and off the mobo, there is little to no performance difference between the boards. So really, additional features are most of what you are paying for.

            The 970 will also be a great card for 1080p or 1440p gaming and even a little VR as it meets the current oculus requirements. It's also the most popular GPU on the Steam survey apparently, which is good for compatibility and longevity IMO. The 8800 was the last card that popular and it had serious staying power, partly because of it's market share.

            Last edited 25/01/16 3:34 pm

          The biggest problem about the Nano is it actually never reaches the 1000Mhz due to thermal constraints. In fact the Fury (Non-X), especially the Overclocked ones are actually faster than the Nano, at least in some tests.

          But if you are making a mini desktop rig, the nano is still no.1, I would look to others if you are making a big desktop

    Would love to chuck this is in my htpc!! Still cant justify that price, the 7970 still copes with everything perfectly.

    If I'm looking to get into building my own PC, can anyone recommend a good builders guide/starting point?

      Www.pcpartpicker.com has all the info you need plus other people post their builds so you can see what configuration works best for you. They also have build video for a variety of systems where they go through the build process step by step. Honestly though it's so easy to build a pc you'll be able to do it without any issues just remember don't force things and be gentle so you don't snap or break things and the rest is a breeze.

    4GB memory is still 4GB memory, no matter how fast you can make it internally work it still bottlenecks when receiving textures from the ram/SSD.

      That's not necessarily 100% accurate. Memory speed is one of the main factors in read and write speeds, i.e receiving textures from RAM/SSD's, not memory size. What you seem to be saying is like saying that a 16GB USB 2 drive is going to be faster than a 8GB USB3 drive, which it just wont. (Although I realize that you may have just worded yourself a little off)

      Faster memory can lessen the need for more memory in some cases, add that to the benchmarks which suggest that, while more memory helps, even the 970's 3.5+0.5GB of RAM is still enough memory to run demanding games at 4K. This is because the GPU gets crippled before it's memory does. I.E The memory often only begins to be a problem after the card can no longer run the game at playable frame rates anyway.

      But I do agree with you. The Nano was always an odd beast. Seemingly made for 4K but with less RAM than competitors and no HDMI 2.0 if I recall correctly. Odd move from AMD I must agree, especially at this price point.

      Last edited 25/01/16 2:36 pm

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