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Graphic Card Question

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  • Graphics Cards
  • Monitors
  • Graphics
Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 16, 2008 9:32:35 PM

I have a quick question here. I have a Asus mobo with SLI. I have purchased a 9800 GX2 to fit into one slot. I am a graphic designer by trade and I like having multiple monitors going. I was wondering if I could add another in-expensive graphics card to the second PCI-E slot, for perhaps 2 other monitors?

So the setup (as I would think of it):

9800 GX2 - running a 24 inch monitor in dual-gpu mode.

8800 GTS - running two smaller monitors on each side of the main 24 inch monitor and be able to cross between monitors like a dual monitor (or tri) setup would usually work.

Also be able to turn-off the extra graphics card for gaming, or would I need not to do that.

Actually I should just find out if this could work?

Oh and I am running Vista 64.

More about : graphic card question

a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 16, 2008 9:48:46 PM

Think I read a thread on Tom's before saying this was possible. I had thought SLI required two identical graphics cards. But perhaps that's only if you want to use them both simultaneously for one project (or game). You might do a search for it.
July 16, 2008 9:55:12 PM

The 9800 GX2 is a SLI card in one slot. I would NOT turn on SLI on the motherboard, just leave it as is. So I guess thats the question does SLI have to be on for the second card to kick in? I am not looking to trying to SLI a 9800 GX2 and a 8800 GTS I just want to use the 8800 for a monitor mule.
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July 16, 2008 10:00:51 PM

that's kinda waste of $ then...use a cheaper 8400 for a mule in that case.
July 16, 2008 10:04:17 PM

8800 GTS was my old card.

Anybody help find an answer?
a c 176 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 16, 2008 10:16:57 PM

Yes, it would work the way you said. There wouldn't be anything to turn off when gaming, as you never turned anything on. You don't need anything like the 8800GTS for the side monitors, but seeing as you have it left over, you might as well.

You'll plug the GX2 into one of the PCIe 16x slots, then plug the GTS into the other. (as mentioned, do not even attempt to turn SLI on.) Plug the main monitor into the DVI port of the GX2. Plug one monitor into each of the other DVI ports on the GTS. Load windows and play around with the identify button to set them up properly. You should be able to just drag them around on the setup until they are arranged in windows the way they are on your desk. (right click on your background, properties, settings. You should see squares, with 1, 2, and 3, on them. Drag these around and hit identify until you've got it right. From left to right you should see 2, 1, 3.)
a b U Graphics card
July 16, 2008 10:18:43 PM

You should be fine with the other card, I think. I have an 8800 GTS and run dual monitors on it just fine. If it works, the 8800 GTS is plenty powerful to run 2 22" moniors (that's what I have).

Let us know if it all works out (I think it should)

EDIT - someone beat me to it.

Hey, don't mean to hijack, but have any of you tried running another set of monitors using a graphics card from another company (ATI instead of nVidia)? Does it work? Just load the other set of drivers?

Thanks
July 16, 2008 10:31:27 PM

Awesome, thanks for the help guys, I will see this weekend how it works out. Seeing they all are watercooled I wanted to see if this would work before doing it all.

I assume I could put vista gadgets on another screen besides the main screen?

So it won't take away any gaming power from my main monitor? I guess I would turn off monitor share anyway just so I don't end up on monitor 2 or something.
a c 176 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 16, 2008 10:51:09 PM

@ Huron, this was possible up until Vista. Vista will only load ONE graphics driver, so any video card you use HAS to be compatible with ALL video cards in your system. XP and below would let you use whatever card/driver combo you wanted. I actually used an Nvidia TNT2 and an ATI Rage on a windows 2000 build when I first started using dual screens. Never had any driver issues either.

@ Kinglou, I haven't played with gadgets/Vista, so I'm not sure. I would hope so.

You SHOULDN'T need to turn off the other monitors when gaming, you SHOULD be locked onto the main one while gaming. I say SHOULD because as I've discovered, some games handle this better then others. TF2 is a game that currently gives me grief, I have to disable my second screen. If I turn hard towards my second monitor in game (if I turn hard towards the right) my game will hard lock. If I turn off the other monitor, its fine.

I have only a single card, with both attached though, so I'm not sure you'll have the same issues.
July 16, 2008 11:00:54 PM

4745454b said:
@ Huron, this was possible up until Vista. Vista will only load ONE graphics driver, so any video card you use HAS to be compatible with ALL video cards in your system. XP and below would let you use whatever card/driver combo you wanted. I actually used an Nvidia TNT2 and an ATI Rage on a windows 2000 build when I first started using dual screens. Never had any driver issues either.

One more reason never go to vista and my list getting kinda long :) 
a b U Graphics card
July 16, 2008 11:26:54 PM

4745454b - Thanks so much for the reply. I have XP x64, so I think it should work.

I'll let you guys know. I think I will get a slightly older model ati card (2400, 2600, or 3650) to use 1 or 2 additional monitors (besides the one SLIed for gaming).

Thanks
!