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Old August 25, 2009, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by fletchoid View Post
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).

All source engine games are heavily cpu based, and as far as i know have no crossfire/sli support anyways.
What most people dont realise about slots running at 8x and 16x is the difference between pcie 1.1 and 2.0. 2.0 doubled the bandwidth, meaning a pcie 2.0 slot running at 8x STILL provides the same bandwidth as a pcie 1.1 slot running at 16x, which as far as i know no card maxes out yet.
And 500$ was never midrange, id hardly call a 7900gtx mid range. Doing proper price comparisons works wonders.
I cant say anything for sli performance gains as ive never had an sli setup, however crossfire DOES give pretty remarkable results. Obviously not every game doubles in fps with the additional card, but on average i see an increase of around 50-60%. And i think cod4 was actually one of the games that did in fact double in fps. Simply because the very few games you play dont take advantage od sli/crossfire, it doesnt mean the gains are non existent, dead, nor useless.
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old August 25, 2009, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
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.
Certainly don't need to go to Toms for results, I have my own in many Benchmarks...i'll provide you with a sample
Benchmark - FC2 Short Ranch 1920 x 1200 All Ultra 8xAA
Single GTX 280 - 38 FPS avg
GTX 280 x 2 SLI - 72 FPS avg
GTX 280 x 3 Tri Sli - 93 FPS avg

Thier you have it, one example.....I'm not going to Post all of my Benches again..(they're here somewhere on this Forum)....
Your Post is really not accurate at all...comparing anything to an ancient 7xx Series SLI arrangement is like comparing 5 yr old CPU power to the present..."whats the point"??

SLI is absolutely, without a doubt, a great option for GPU / Gaming enthusiasts...I tend to find the folks that keep stating a "Powerful Single Card Solution" is better than SLI are those that really know nothing about SLI, except stuff they read on the Net....they have no "experience" with it....I believe the numbers I posted are "proof" enough of the potential of multi GPU's...

btw....I had great results going from single to SLI on a Duo Core E8400 OC'd as well...
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Last edited by rjbarker; August 25, 2009 at 05:00 PM.
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Old August 25, 2009, 06:34 PM
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Btw, as I seen it mentioned that 8x PCI-E speeds dont effect cards, this is untrue, there is about a 5-10% performance hit between 8x and 16x, and the gap gets larger when you move to cards like the GTX 285. This gap is less noticable when in an SLI config because your already seeing deminishing returns of around 20% from the 2nd card anyways. but the performance loss is there. dual or tri x16s all the way, Im already planning on atleast another GTX 260... even after having 2 then selling one, I miss the big numbers =P
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Old August 25, 2009, 07:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjbarker View Post
Certainly don't need to go to Toms for results, I have my own in many Benchmarks...i'll provide you with a sample
Benchmark - FC2 Short Ranch 1920 x 1200 All Ultra 8xAA
Single GTX 280 - 38 FPS avg
GTX 280 x 2 SLI - 72 FPS avg
GTX 280 x 3 Tri Sli - 93 FPS avg

Thier you have it, one example.....I'm not going to Post all of my Benches again..(they're here somewhere on this Forum)....
Your Post is really not accurate at all...comparing anything to an ancient 7xx Series SLI arrangement is like comparing 5 yr old CPU power to the present..."whats the point"??

SLI is absolutely, without a doubt, a great option for GPU / Gaming enthusiasts...I tend to find the folks that keep stating a "Powerful Single Card Solution" is better than SLI are those that really know nothing about SLI, except stuff they read on the Net....they have no "experience" with it....I believe the numbers I posted are "proof" enough of the potential of multi GPU's...

btw....I had great results going from single to SLI on a Duo Core E8400 OC'd as well...
I would argue a single high end card is better than 2-3 mid range cards, for 1 simple reason. You can get 3 high end cards :P. Seriously though, it all depends, perhaps 2 cards in SLI will yield more fps than a single card that's much more expensive. Personally, I'd rather have 1 great card that performs as well as 2 good cards, more room for upgrade. But looking at your results, you're getting better gains than I do with my 8800 ultras, which simply proves SLI has gotten much more efficient between the 8000 and the 200 series.
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Old August 25, 2009, 07:40 PM
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The jump from 8800 GTX (my previous Card) to GTX 2xx Series was substantial indeed......I believe that SLI during the 8000 Series was pretty "green" and "immature".....going back to the 7000 Series I'm sure they were still trying to figure out optimized Drivers....
Still... Tri Sli 8800 Ultras is Uber Performance indeed.
I'd love to see a comparison of your rig on this I7 Tri Sli Gtx 280 Rig, just for fun...
If you can run the FC2 Benchmark Short Ranch 1920 x 1200 Ultra Settings 8xAA - 3 Loops...would be very curious to see the results!
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Old August 25, 2009, 08:08 PM
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I LOVES my multi-gpu setup.

Anyways a 7900 GTX at the time was a top of the line GPU and by far not mid-range. I used to own a 7600 GT that was mid-range. Also SLI during the 7000 series was horrible and I never considered it. Now there are huge performance gains and I can notice a much smoother gameplay experience. Although I am biased at running at 2560 x 1600 so I need the horse power to run at that res. I have personally experienced almost double the frame rate in some games. In others there isn't much of a gain.

Also of coarse a 7900 GTX SLI is going to be worse then a single 4870 because the 7900 GTX is very old. You are talking about 3 generations ago which is a long time in computer time.
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Old August 25, 2009, 08:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjbarker View Post
The jump from 8800 GTX (my previous Card) to GTX 2xx Series was substantial indeed......I believe that SLI during the 8000 Series was pretty "green" and "immature".....going back to the 7000 Series I'm sure they were still trying to figure out optimized Drivers....
Still... Tri Sli 8800 Ultras is Uber Performance indeed.
I'd love to see a comparison of your rig on this I7 Tri Sli Gtx 280 Rig, just for fun...
If you can run the FC2 Benchmark Short Ranch 1920 x 1200 Ultra Settings 8xAA - 3 Loops...would be very curious to see the results!
OK give me a few to install FC2 :)
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Old August 25, 2009, 09:08 PM
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Not too bad!
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Old August 25, 2009, 10:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Linus View Post
There's a fair bit of misinformation in here that I think needs to be addressed.

- $500 is not a mid-range graphics card. It never has been.
- You do not need the same graphics card. You can use one from a different manufacturer, one with a different clock speed, one with a different firmware, etc, etc, etc
- The performance boost is not minimal. The general rule that I've observed is that 2x prev. generation cards at price point X is approximately equal to 1x current generation card at price point X. Basically you're able to get next gen performance out of old gen cards.
- Onboard graphics are not reasonably good, and hybrid SLI/Crossfire are utterly useless. They are not even supported by Windows 7.
Couldn't have said it any better! Hybrid SLI generally sucks! I like to use dedicated graphics cards for all of my computing tasks
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Old August 25, 2009, 11:29 PM
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Hey JMCD...was that the exact same settings within the Benchmark?
8x AA yada yada yada ?
32 FPS avg.......................sure shows how much the I7 and Tri 16x PCI-E Lanes on the classified board speed things up ...

Thanks for the Demo ;)
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