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  #11 (permalink)  
Old August 23, 2009, 01:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bojangles View Post
Even high end cards can't even use all the bandwidth on a X8 slot yet. It's close, but you can see people run Crossfired 4870X2's on P45 boards with no drop in framerates compared to boards with X16 slots.
^^

What he said. PCIe 8x has zero impact on performance at this time.
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old August 23, 2009, 02:11 PM
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I was running 2 4870's crossfire and my benchmarks were slightly better, but i found most of the games i was playing i had lower fps. going into VATS mode in fallout 3 totally lagged out every time, when running 1 card it was smooth.

Never tried SLI though
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Old August 23, 2009, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Linus View Post
^^

What he said. PCIe 8x has zero impact on performance at this time.
Then what would be the benefit to having 2 16x pcie slots? Thanks for clearing that up for me, now maybe I'll start saving for another psu and 4870 lol.

Quote:
Originally Posted by element291 View Post
I was running 2 4870's crossfire and my benchmarks were slightly better, but i found most of the games i was playing i had lower fps. going into VATS mode in fallout 3 totally lagged out every time, when running 1 card it was smooth.

Never tried SLI though

Driver issues?
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old August 23, 2009, 09:18 PM
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I'm guessing the OP has 7-series cards? Maybe even lower, which is why he probably feels SLI is garbage since it was and still is for those cards. Or this so-called $500 mid-range card was some sort of rip-off that the OP got sucked into.

Without details it's hard to judge IMO. There's many factors to consider both hardware and software wise. The motherboard settings need to be correct, the SLI connector fitted properly and the latest drivers installed with the SLI enabled. If the games he runs don't really support SLI or he runs like 800x600 resolution. Then yeah, SLI is pretty useless.

You need modern games, maximum settings in-game with AA and AF, along with a fairly high resolution to really see SLI churn out some performance gains.

Though SLI marketing is a gimmick, you do not need a SLI certified PSU or case or whatever else. Only the motherboard needs to have it.
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Old August 24, 2009, 02:28 AM
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SLI rocks indeed...I have posted Benchmarks for single / SLI and TRI SLI and in all cases the improvement was excellent!! No complaints (other than Hydro Bill n heat in the room) ;)
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Old August 24, 2009, 04:51 AM
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With the advent of Intel making the SLI capable chipsets and the price point of video cards/powersupplies there has never really ever been a better time to SLI
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Old August 24, 2009, 06:59 AM
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Well 8800SLI on this platform actually kicks about 70% scaling when i use my second card, All in all very happy with it.
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Old August 24, 2009, 07:33 AM
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I would say the only way the OP statements holds true, in a round about way, is if you look at the performance of a single modern $200ish card VS your average monitor today. A single 4870 or Nvidia equivalent will allow you to run most games at max settings on a 22inch LCD (1680x1050), therefore SLI or crossfire is not needed or obsolete for most people because you don't need SLI/crossfire to get playable frame rates with all eye candy turned.
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Old August 24, 2009, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Varroa View Post
A single 4870 or Nvidia equivalent will allow you to run most games at max settings on a 22inch LCD (1680x1050), therefore SLI or crossfire is not needed or obsolete for most people because you don't need SLI/crossfire to get playable frame rates with all eye candy turned.
I agree that for most people, it still holds true that you're probably better off getting a single card. However, at the same time for enthusiasts, SLI/Crossfire has also greatly improved. The performance bump can be significant, especially if you like AA and compatibility issues, driver problems and even micro-stuttering issues are far less common nowadays. I used to almost never recommend it to the more casual enthusiasts I know, but now I do think of it more as a serious option for them. So the thread title is kind of silly because if anything SLI/Crossfire has become more relevant than it ever has recently.
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Old August 25, 2009, 05:12 PM
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Re: the price of a mid range card 3-4 years ago. I will not dispute the comments on price of an older video card (7900GTX; 2006). I know that I paid WAY too much for my 7900 GTX, and probably could have got a much better deal. Also, my definition of “mid range” is probably skewed because the top of the line card available from the overpriced supplier I purchased my card from, cost double what I paid for my card (which I paid too much for). So, I concede your point on price.

Re: performance increase when two cards are linked in SLI. See the following link:

http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/desktop-vga-charts-2006/compare,603.html?prod[1677]=on&prod[1668]=on&prod[1671]=on&prod[1678]=on&prod[1670]=on&prod[1669]=on

I regularly play Oblivion, and occasionally play Half Life 2. The improvements achieved by linking two 7900GTX cards in SLI, don’t impress me. They do not approach “2X” the fps. My son and I both have the same card, so I tried SLI with both cards in my computer, and found that for about $300 bucks, I could purchase an ATI 4870 card and get much better performance with ONE card, and not end up overtaxing my power supply. Sure, if I buy the latest CPU (Intel i7) and motherboard (P45 chipsets and above) I can get better fps from an SLI configuration, (especially if I link 3 cards together) but in my opinion, the whole point of SLI is to achieve much better fps without upgrading the whole damn computer.

Re: onboard graphics with Hybrid graphics. The whole point of Hybrid graphics, is that when you are doing things like surfing the net, checking your email, and other low power activities, you use only the onboard graphics, which work very well for these activities. Then, when you fire up Crysis, your state of the art graphics card kicks in and boosts the performance to the level required to play the game. As for what Windows 7 supports; I plead ignorance, as I will not be getting my copy of Win7 until October. However, wrt Hybrid graphics, does it make sense to use the Ferrari to drive to the store to buy a litre of milk? Why not have on board graphics to do the easy things, and then boost performance with a high end card? The whole computer industry is pushing energy conservation with lower powered CPUs. If a hundred million people save a Watt every day….. 100,000,000 Watts a day saved.

I will admit that my next motherboard will be Crossfire compatible, because I like the idea that I can buy a newer card, and it will work with my older card, even if the model is different. This makes more sense to me than trying to find a “similar” model to my old graphics card (maybe the newer SLI motherboards are more forgiving than my mobo).

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