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Video performance, 1 or 2 cards (Crossfire)

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 2, 2008 6:20:41 PM

I’ve always thought a crossfire setup was the way to go. After reading the SLI / CrossFire FAQs on this forum and from what other users said, a crossfire setup does not necessarily double the video memory.

I just bought 2 Sapphire HD 2600XT with 512 meg of DDR3 memory and was planning to put them in crossfire setup. The total cost for these 2 cards is about $120.00 (I can still exchange them). Typically, for a single card with 1 gig of memory, the price more than doubles that of 2 cards with 512 meg of memory. But it’s probable worth it to get the performance I want. I guess I’ll be spending $250 to $300.
The video hungry programs I run are MS Flight Simulator X, Punch Home Design, and F.E.A.R.

I’ll toke a look at the “Short List Best Video Gaming Cards for the Money” but would also like to hear your recommendations for a PCIe x 16 with 1 gig (especially if someone is a Flight Sim X gamer).

Thanks,
Jim

Proc = Core 2 Duo E6750 with Liquid Cooling System
MB = Gigabyte GA-P35-DQ6
Mem = Corsair, CM2X1024, 2 GB
H D= 2 SATA Barracuda 320 GB & WD 320 GB
Video = GeForce 8600 GT
Case/PSU = Smilodon Case w/500 Watt PSU
OS = Windows XP SP 3
August 2, 2008 6:43:20 PM

The best cards for your price range are either the ATI 4870 or the Nvidia GTX 260. The GTX has more memory, but the ATI has much fast memory. Usually the 4870 is faster, but in some games the GTX edges it out. Just google search 4870 review.
August 2, 2008 6:46:28 PM

aye with that board you wanna go ati , that and the best bang for buck atm as said lots is the 4870. i suspect with some newer drivers the ati will outdo the gtx260 as well , its still in its early stages atm , then at least later you can go crossfire , whereas if you go nvidia your screwwed mobo wise
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August 2, 2008 6:54:45 PM

I'm sure everyone will agree that the best option is to get the single fastest card you can afford. Any 1 of the cards listed above will out perform your 2 2600's in crossfire and depending on your resolution your best option would be either the 4850 or 4870. The biggest problem with multiple card setups is scaling where there is a very inconsistent performance gain from 1 card to 2 depending on the game. SLI and Crossfire aren't a bad thing but it's only really a good idea to combine 2 high end cards rather than 2 mid range or low end, with those you should just buy a better card.
August 2, 2008 6:58:48 PM

The HD 4850 looks great; however, it’s a “PCIe 2.0 x 16” and my motherboard slot is a standard “PCIe x 16”. I’m not sure of their compatibility.
a b U Graphics card
August 2, 2008 7:22:31 PM

PCI-E 2.0 is backward compatible, you won't have any problems.
August 2, 2008 7:23:13 PM

they will work fine on PCIe x 16. you would hardly notice a differnce between normal PCIe and PCIe 2.0.
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