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3 x GTX295 Capable System - (Hex-SLI?)

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June 30, 2009 2:35:02 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: A.S.A.P.

BUDGET RANGE: Cheap as possible, but I know what I'm getting myself into

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: CUDA Processing, Gaming, Video Editing

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor, Speakers, OS, Hard Drive, Optical DVD Drive, RAM (12GB OCZ GOLD PC12800), CPU (Core i7 920)

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: ncix.com, tigerdirect.ca

PARTS PREFERENCES:

$274.99 EVGA X58 SLI LE ATX LGA1366 DDR3 4PCIE-16 PCI-E1 1PCI SATA2 Sound Dual GBLAN 1394 Motherboard
http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=39291&promoi...

$159.97 Cooler Master HAF 932 Full Tower Black Case
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/searchtools/item...

$435.99 Ultra X3 ULT40070 1600-Watt Power Supply - ATX, SATA-Ready, PCI-E Ready, Energy Efficient, Modular
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...

3 X $600.37 BFG GeForce GTX 295 576MHZ 1792MB 1.998GHZ GDDR3 PCI-E Dual DVI-I HDMI HDCP Single Pcb Video Card
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=40120&vpn=BFGEGTX2951...


OVERCLOCKING: YES
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: YES

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080 - Possibly DUAL 1920x1080, depending on leftover cash (will cost me $200 to make it DUAL)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:


What I am gunning for here is a system that can support 3 GTX295 cards.
I need to make sure the motherboard will have enough space for 3 of those monsters, and that the power should be substantial.


I've already got the RAM and CPU because those are things I'm dead-set on.

I've done a bunch of research and am ready to buy the mobo/psu/case, but I want to make sure it will all fit properly. I know the cooler master HAF 932 is an amazingly large case with enormous cooling, and that the EVGA X58 SLI LE is a beautiful mobo, but I am scared I will buy it and then the three GTX295's will not fit on the mobo.

Also, I have selected the Ultra X3 1600W power supply based on the NVIDIA specs saying you need at least 680W to support the GTX295, and that it takes max 280W.

I figure that means adding two more cards is 680W + 280W + 280W = 1240W, which breaks my chances of getting a 1200W.

Is there a cheaper way of me getting enough power for all 3 cards, without going to 2xPSU? I worry about the added heat from another PSU.

Basically my two questions are,
1. Will this MOBO/CASE fit 3 x GTX295, and if the mobo will not, which mobo will?

2. Is there a cheaper alternative to the Ultra X3 1600W without using 2 PSU's, and making sure the PSU is Modular, SLI Approved, and purchasable at NCIX.com or TigerDirect.ca?


Thanks for your time :) 

June 30, 2009 2:37:03 PM

I knew I forgot something.

I know that NVIDIA does not support three GTX295s in SLI, but I will be using these mainly in Linux for programming, and for gaming.

Until (I hope) Nvidia releases firmware upgrades that allow HEX-SLI with 3 x GTX295, I hope to have GTX295 SLI for gaming, and then the 3rd GTX295 not bridged in SLI, but kept for me to use as a secondary CPU for my programs.
June 30, 2009 4:15:58 PM

swap the PSU for a xigmatek 1500w, far better quality so you'll actually be getting 1500w output, not the 950w I'd guess you'd get from the Ultra.

swap the mobo for an EVGA classified or ASUS P6T7 so you don't don't bottleneck the cards.

Case is fine but I would opt for a silverstone TJ10 as you get more space.
Related resources
June 30, 2009 4:25:16 PM

If you live in Canada don't order from newegg since you have to pay for duty and taxes.

NCIX have a price match option when ordering parts.
June 30, 2009 4:29:04 PM

Price Match.. WOOT

Do they always give you the good price?
June 30, 2009 4:30:17 PM

Buying three GTX295's is a waste of your money!!! Nvidia will not be releasing a HEX-SLI support. There is no need to have more than Quad-SLI, which isn't the best supported anyways. You would be much better off suited buying three EVGA GeForce GTX 285 Video Card - 1GB GDDR3, PCI Express 2.0, SLI Ready, (Dual Link) Dual DVI, HDTV, then OC to FTW speeds and run them Tri-SLI. Tri-SLI is much better supported and in most benchmarks out performs Quad-SLI.

Drop the Ultra power supply and get this powersupply instead... Corsair CMPSU-1000HX 1000-Watt Power Supply - ATX, 140mm Fan, SATA-Ready, SLI Ready. This power supply will handle 3 GTX285's and you don't want to trust you PC with a Ultra power supply. Always try to stick to either Corsair or PC Power and Cooling when you can.
June 30, 2009 4:34:31 PM

Tru.. Just get two GTX 295s and get a 285 for Phyxs.. NOw you have the best Graphic card combo.
June 30, 2009 4:35:49 PM

Thanks for the fast replies everyone.

I am planning to use the three GTX295's in dual-SLI, and then one GTX295 for dedicated physics, is that reasonable?

I have spent many a night tossing and turning about whether I should go 3xGTX295, or 3xGTX285

Thanks for the information on the Power Supply I will check out the ones you guys have referenced.

I forgot to mention that I did get the 920 with D0 stepping, but I picked it up for $280, not nearly as nice as $200 that was linked on Micro Centre.

June 30, 2009 4:36:58 PM

Tryceo,

That's something I never actually considered, but makes quite a bit of sense.
For some reason I had it in my head that all the cards needed to be the same...
Thanks!
June 30, 2009 4:38:20 PM

get 3x GTX 285's, nvidia cards have onboard PhysX anyway.
June 30, 2009 4:44:49 PM

^+1 on helloworld_98...

If you really want a PhysX Card, than just pick up a cheap 9500GT card or any single slot 9xxxGT series card and run in as your PhysX Card. Your board supports 3-Way SLI and PhysX. One of those cards are plenty strong enough to run PhysX. You don't need or should you waste your money on a GTX295 or GTX285 to use as a PhysX card.
June 30, 2009 5:53:50 PM

The only reason to get 3x GTX295's would be for Folding! :D 
June 30, 2009 5:56:34 PM

tecmo34 said:
^+1 on helloworld_98...

If you really want a PhysX Card, than just pick up a cheap 9500GT card or any single slot 9xxxGT series card and run in as your PhysX Card. Your board supports 3-Way SLI and PhysX. One of those cards are plenty strong enough to run PhysX. You don't need or should you waste your money on a GTX295 or GTX285 to use as a PhysX card.



@tecmo34

I'm going with the Corsair CMPSU-1000HX , and actually found it at NCIX.com for a bit cheaper than TigerDirect.
Thanks!

I think for now I'll grab the GTX285 as it seem they are highly thought of by you guys, see how I feel about it for a while.. and then if it performs to what I need sufficiently I will tri-SLI that puppy.

!