I have always been an NVIDIA person, but this Christmas, I chose the R9 390 over the GTX 970. I partially like my decision, and am partially regretting it.
I play a lot of FPS game, such as PAYDAY 2, Grand Theft Auto V, and Fallout 4. Yesterday, I wanted to play Minecraft with a friend, which is something I rarely ever do. Before I actually played anything, I started a new "superflat" world (for those who don't play: its a world that isn't demanding of resources, that's all you need to know in my case) to see how the framerates compared to my old card (GTX 660). What surprised me was that I was only getting an average of 40 fps, and it was fluctuating rapidly. The highest I saw it was 63. During this entire time, there was plentiful screen tear, even when the framerate was below 60 fps. I shut off VSync. Nothing changed. I turned all of the settings to minimum (to the point where I couldn't see 16 blocks in front of me). The framerate was about 200. This doesn't sound bad, but with a GTX 660 I would be getting OVER 1,000 fps with these settings. As soon as I approached an auto-generated village, the framerate crashed back to 43 again, with worse screen tear.
I checked MSi Afterburner. The card was running at idle temperatures and the usage was constantly below 10%. So, I guess the problem would be that something is throttling the graphics card. I'm no expert, but a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 shouldn't be able to outperform an AMD Radeon R9 390.
Secondly, I am not sure if this is only specific to this game. I played Garry's Mod for a few minutes, and the card was performing about the same as the other one, but it did lag worse than the old card when destroying mass amounts of props at once. I didn't test other Valve Source Engine games such as Team Fortress 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, or Left 4 Dead 2, but it might not be just a Minecraft problem
It would be great if I could get some help with this problem, or I might return my Radeon R9 390 for a GeForce GTX 970.