SLI/Crossfire VS Single Card Performance

Hello everyone, I am new to the forums so bear with me on my knowledge.
I currently have an alienware x51, yes I know, I did not listen and did not customize my own.
I was going to see if somebody could verify if this could be a good choice on my computer I am customizing right now...

Motherboard: MSI B85M-G43 LGA1150 Intel B85 DDR3/CrossfireX

I have heard that Crossfire is only for AMD cards, but I was wondering if I could still put two Nvidia GeForce GTX 750s in my Motherboard and have great performance and balance the heat/load on high intensity games.

If not, I would like to know a good graphics card I could use that has enough cooling and power to run things like TF2 on high graphics, minecraft shader packs, and plenty of the other Steam games I have on high graphics without fan blasting me.

I will be using water cooling on my processor when I get my new computer, if that even matters.

My currently alienware's card is an AMD Radeon R9-270X and on small loads the GPU fan runs crazy and gets above 70 degrees and has random shutdowns. I am pretty sure it has something to do with the awful cooling and circulation in the case.

If someone could make sense of what I just typed and try to help me it would be appreciated, Thanks!
8 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about sli crossfire single card performance
  1. Crossfire is indeed for only AMD cards. The nVidia version is called SLI, and that motherboard is only compatible with crossfire. Also, the GTX 750s don't have SLI bridge connectors, so can't be used in SLI anyway.

    If you're having shutdowns of you computer when gaming, that's more likely a power issue. What PSU do you have?
  2. Generally, most 760s (from reputable brands) with aftermarket coolers will run cool and quiet. I'd recommend going with that, as a 760 will easily handle TF2.
  3. I am not sure what the PSU is in Watts, I would assume it is the standard 330W which came with the X51. I would not be so harsh if it was not for the fact it automatically shuts down when playing simply TF2 on high settings with 4x AA.
  4. Best answer
    330W? It sounds like they were cutting it awful close when they designed that, but, seeing as it came with the R9-270X, it wouldn't make much sense that it couldn't power it, so maybe it isn't a power issue after all.

    If it really does get that loud at low loads, then there may be a problem with the cooling, and the shutdowns are actually due to it overheating. If possible, could you monitor the load (in percentage), temperature, and fan speed (probably in percentage) when playing TF2, or something even more demanding? I'm just trying to clarify if there's something wrong with the card itself, as if there is, it should be covered by the alienware warranty.
  5. My average loads on a simple minecraft game (default) without MSI Afterburner running:
    GPU Temp: 70C
    GPU Load: Average 73%
    Fan %: 24% (terribly managed by alienware instructions)
  6. 24% fan! I see what you mean about it being terribly managed by Alienware. Still, I'm actually surprised the temperature is only 70 degrees. I'd imagine at that 24% fan speed it's rather quiet surely? Is it really that loud? And if you up the fan speed, either with Alienware's software, or something like MSI Afterburner, does it get unbearably loud?

    Realistically, 70 degrees is not that hot for a GPU. Any thermal safety features wouldn't be triggered until you hit a much higher temperature. So unless the temperature gets a lot lot higher under certain loads (which I could believe happening if the software in charge of the fan speed is managing it that badly), I can't see an obvious reason why it shuts down on you other than a failing power supply (unlikely, but certainly possible).

    EDIT: Sorry, got a bit sidetracked from your original questions! The 270X should be good enough for the games you asked about, and really shouldn't be deafening you. I can't really recommend you just buy a new card to fix your issues if your current one is still under warranty with Alienware; you deserve to get what you paid for from them!
  7. Well when I run MSI afterburner while gaming for a while without it, it runs the fans at about 60% for about 5 minutes and then maintains it at 50 degrees. I decided to open the case before deciding to return it and opt for a custom build. Turns out the people at dell never tucked away the cords that run by the front intake for the GPU cooler. I'll see how that works but it's just weird how alienware manages it's fan. I also decided to update my drivers overnight using one of my trusted programs. Seems that all the drivers were practically ancient, including the GPU which hadn't even had it's catalyst update yet. If what you are saying is true about the GPU not being too hot for that temperature, I'm sure it would be fine. I just need to stop reading those horror stories where the case melts.
  8. Well, I wish you the best of luck. Hopefully the poor cable management had something to do with your woes; it certainly couldn't have helped! Oh, and no, I don't think your case will melt ;-)
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