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480 Dual SLI, Need Expert Advice

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 10, 2010 7:34:44 PM

I was lucky to snag two EVGA 480 SuperClocked GPUs on newegg. I'm a little concerned about my current setup and I wasn't sure whether or not I should be....

I currently have an OCZ 1000w PSU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This has 83 Amps on a single 12V rail.

I own an OC'd i7 and 6 sticks of OC'd DDR 3 memory. I should also mention that I have an antec 1200 case with 10 fans (most are 120mm, except for the huge one on the top)

Should I be concerned about getting the dual 480s with my current PSU setup? Should I upgrade the PSU? I'm seeing mixed reviews everywhere, so I'm not sure what the worst case scenario is, or if I am digging myself into a hole here.

Any expert advice would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
a c 130 U Graphics card
April 10, 2010 7:36:55 PM

Each will use 28A on their own. Your CPU might use up to 20A, depending on the OC. Fans run off of the +5v rail I believe.

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April 10, 2010 7:59:52 PM

shadow187 said:
Each will use 28A on their own. Your CPU might use up to 20A, depending on the OC. Fans run off of the +5v rail I believe.


So I suppose 83A is enough... But is 1000w a cause for concern?
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April 10, 2010 10:10:54 PM

Better question is why you got them in the first place.
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a c 225 U Graphics card
April 10, 2010 11:40:48 PM

The Z series is the only OCZ PSU, I'd give the nod for this on.

Anxious to see how this works out for you .... my sons have Antec 1200's .... one wants to upgrade to a 5970 w/ 3 monitors for FSX and the other wants to move to twin 470's.
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a b U Graphics card
April 10, 2010 11:53:06 PM

builderbobftw said:
Better question is why you got them in the first place.


To replace his crossfired 5870s, duh. There are always a few of those people.

Well, who knows whether this guy is one, but you know what I mean.
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April 11, 2010 12:08:11 AM

capt_taco said:
To replace his crossfired 5870s, duh. There are always a few of those people.

Well, who knows whether this guy is one, but you know what I mean.


HEhehehe.

he should have bought a 5970 to Quadfire them them.

But seriously, WHY OH WHY????!!!!
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 12:16:15 AM

Well he will have the fastest two cards in the world. And you need two cards in sli for Nvidias 3-way multi monitor setup. He might also be going for 3d as shown here.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0JT4JCChgw

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April 11, 2010 12:38:35 AM

No, the 2 fastest card sin the woorld are 2 5970s.

BOOM.
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 12:46:52 AM

Don't you have a dump to go scavenge ?
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April 11, 2010 12:48:05 AM

Hehhe.

Only open from 12-4, 3 days a week.

But yeh.
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a c 130 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 1:15:48 AM

Builder...no offense...you are childish :|.

The HD5970 + HD5870 trifire will cost the same as 2x GTX480 ($550 + $550 = $1,100; $650 + $450 = $1,100), and those would outperform the nVidian duo.
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a c 216 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 1:36:24 AM

shadow187 said:
Builder...no offense...you are childish :|.

The HD5970 + HD5870 trifire will cost the same as 2x GTX480 ($550 + $550 = $1,100; $650 + $450 = $1,100), and those would outperform the nVidian duo.


I'm not sure it would or not, but I'm sure it would be close. However, unless you get the new 2Gb/4Gb versions, it might not have the memory to handle the resolutions, with the AA turned up, on a system like this would normally be used with.
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a c 130 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 1:40:36 AM

The Sapphire 4GB HD5970 should be quite a contender.
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a c 172 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 2:11:53 AM

Well to be back on topic I think that your setup up will be enough for just two GTX480s and nothing more as for fans they don't use that much power. One can run most 12v DC fans off some monocrystalline PV cells with ease.
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April 11, 2010 2:16:56 AM

Aren't any of you even a little bit concerned about the heat those cards are going to generate in a SLI configuration?

But, to get back on topic, I think the PSU should be able to handle it. It is a 1k PSU after all, if that's not enough for only two 480, then throw the damned things out the window lol
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a c 130 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 2:21:09 AM

Are those fans LED? LED fans use ~5watts, which isn't much, but 10 of them leads to 50Watts of fan. 50Watts goes to RAM as well.
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 2:22:52 AM

I say, its ~ok if ran @ Stock. If I am in your shoes with that much cash and a 1.4Kw PSU, I would water cool and OC the hell out of them :lol: 

I would get BFG 1.2Kw lifetime warranty 199$ http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 2:31:00 AM

2 480s wouldn't even break 800W total power draw.
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 2:33:12 AM

rofl_my_waffle said:
2 480s wouldn't even break 800W total power draw.


Why spending more on a +25Mhz called superclocked version? It smells fishy somewhere.

The recommended is 1Kw for GTX 480 SLI as they use more power than 2x5970s. If you run them at under 1Kw, the PSU might start loosing its efficiency. OCind the 480s should need 1Kw+. The op has overclocked CPU also. wow just had the idea that a microwave uses 1000w to cook very fast, were not that far off ...
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a c 172 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 1:57:30 PM

Well if push come to shove you could order a dual phase unit that is good up to 2k (dual 120v ac inputs) note that some dual phase units when powered on can and do often dim your lights but then again most people don't have a SGI setup that uses 3 phase 220v ac.
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 2:08:06 PM

lol "dim your lights"
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April 11, 2010 2:31:36 PM



stop trolling he didn't ask ur opionion on his purchase. And he doesn't need wat u pointed out for 2 480s.

Each time u add a 480 u add a safe barrier of 250 watts a 1000 wat should be enough for even 3 480s

@ op

I would suggest picking up a corsair 1000 watt hx. It's really decent price. It performs like some 1200 watt psus in some cases. It's very good quality and value.

@bob

seriously enough with the lame comments, answer ppl's questions don't be a prick.

P.s

2 5970 + scaling = fail, just like most setups 3 and over
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 3:14:06 PM

Yep as liquid said except that 1000w is stretching it with 3x480 from a safe perspective because the 480 is Not 250w, tests showing it is sucking more power than the 300w 5970.

bob is prolly making a joke by saying "might" lmao

But really I would get a BFG 1.2Kw If you want 3x480 only because it has lifetime warranty and it is cheaper than the hx1000 which is on par with your current PSU, 199$,while being more powerfull!

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

So as I said earlier, your PSU is enough for 480SLI but dont count on OCing them because you will hit 2 walls: PSU insufficiency + Heat.
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 3:29:23 PM

1kw actually sounds lean

320+320+200(clocked i7)+say 150 for everything else at max draw=970watts

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April 11, 2010 3:37:30 PM

And what do you do if you want ot OC?

You can't.

And Liquid, Come on, Can I not make jokes?
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April 11, 2010 3:54:48 PM

250 wats is for added cards sli cards don't waste double the watts... Everytime u add a card it uses less watts than the first card. The 480 gtx on load, has are 50 more watts than a 285 gtx. I ran 3 of those, with 4,02 oc i7 and overclocked 285s. I'll be fine for the 480s with a good quality 1000 watt
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April 11, 2010 3:57:24 PM

320 watts for first card it won't be 320 for the second, it will be less than 250 watts. 250 watts is just the safety barrier
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April 11, 2010 3:57:38 PM

Yes they do.

When both carda re run at 100% load, the wattage doubles.

Now if you ahve one card at 100, and one at 75%, then yeh, Wattage doesn't double.

And that 1000KW PSU of you'rs can output about 1.3KW, Not everyone has such an awesome PSU.
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April 11, 2010 4:00:41 PM

Do you have any Proof?

(When both cards are at 100% load, Furmark or Crysis, With no CPU bottleneck)
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April 11, 2010 4:05:26 PM

I might be wrong but I'm pretty sure
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April 11, 2010 4:10:30 PM

Prehaps what you're finding is that the second card is not run at full load, meaning less power useage?
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April 11, 2010 4:11:29 PM

I read wrong but again u add 250 per gpu added. According to guru3D

http://www.guru3d.com/article/geforce-gtx-470-480-revie...

so a cheap 1000 watt might stretch it but... A decent 1 will do u good. The corsair is only 230$ here in cad so it should be a good choice since it's half the price of certain 1200 watt ones.

Again my mistake for gpu watt count but the cire math still adds up lol
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 4:15:40 PM

Heres a video of 480 sli, stop with the cherry picked graphs, then the ghetto math with 2x double round off exaggerating, http://www.hardocp.com/article/2010/03/26/nvidia_fermi_...



Those are all compared the same way. You can get any high performance quad core system , like a i5 750 or a i7 920 , super o/c with a high v core/ and get VERY high spikes of system tdp. This is nothing new !
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April 11, 2010 4:25:20 PM

I knew it, that the 2nd cards draws less... Look at the difference it's 100 watts for sli
Guru3d says 250 watts only because thatswat 1 cards draws.
Even when u look at sites going from single to dual, it doesn't pour out as much as tdp
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 4:39:22 PM

That power consumption chart from HardOCP is wrong because it's not in full load.


Here are full load images:






At full load, the entire system with 1 GTX480 uses around 420-475watts, while two GTX480s use around 680-710 watts.

You're adding about 250-260 watts or so at full load with another GTX480 for SLi.


This falls in line with the estimated increase in power consumption based on the 1 PCIe 8 pin and 1 PICe 6 pin configuration - at full load adding another card should be add between 225watts and 300watts in energy consumption.

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a c 130 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 4:44:23 PM

And I'm assuming that's not an OC there, bluescreen?
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 4:45:34 PM

No , its not WRONG. Different tests are going to get different results. A quad core cpu o/c or not can be 200 watts difference in of itself. Those Hocp videos were trumpeted as proof of blah blah blah one minute and as soon as the next review has a higher cherry picked # to use in a fanboy argument, THAT becomes the RIGHT way to test. Then for total hypocrisy some will take their favorite figure from each web site to combine them for a totally slanted unrealistic picture. Whats funny or not so funny is the
GTX 480 comes out the fastest GPU in all of them, nuff said.
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a c 130 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 4:53:04 PM

I see it adding 235 watts for another GTX480. How is that wrong?
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 4:59:42 PM

I wasn't referring to your wrong then, it was to Hocp's test being wrong. The one everyone linked to hundreds of times, as proof, now its wrong.

You guys want to talk about a pig of a card ! And pci-e connectors as proof of anything.
The ATI AREs card is going to have two 8 pin+1 6 pin external power connectors. Add 75 watts for the pci-e slot- thats 450 watts from the gpu ? To bad its still going to lose to GTX 480 sli :) 
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a c 130 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 5:07:55 PM

That's not a card from ATI...it's a custom card. If you think that no one's going to make a custom GTX480, then nVida is sore out of luck.
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a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 5:20:17 PM

As a HUGE Terminator fan, I have to admit at chuckling at the video of quad fermi sli initiating Judgment Day. Always did like the Terminator -good or bad guy :) 
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a c 172 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 5:24:34 PM

When I build multy gpu setups I only factor in maximum load according to the VRM spec of the cards. A quality 1Kw psu is good enough and if the build is efficient a 850w quality unit will manage. The issue with this that some of us live in areas ware power isn't cheap and with all the taxes that are being passed in the US, Canada, and Europe that wont change any time soon. Another is heat dissipation but what can you do besides liquid cooling.
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a c 130 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 5:37:04 PM

It's not watts all the time, it's amps on the 12v.
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a c 125 U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 5:47:06 PM

notty22 said:
As a HUGE Terminator fan, I have to admit at chuckling at the video of quad fermi sli initiating Judgment Day. Always did like the Terminator -good or bad guy :) 


Yeah the terminator films are awesome :) 

On Topic: The OP's PSU is more than enough, and heat shouldn't be a problem as he has a good, high air flow case
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 9:25:44 PM

notty22 said:
Heres a video of 480 sli, stop with the cherry picked graphs, then the ghetto math with 2x double round off exaggerating, http://www.hardocp.com/article/2010/03/26/nvidia_fermi_...

http://www.hardocp.com/images/articles/126962492671BZgJ5ZxI_7_1.png

Those are all compared the same way. You can get any high performance quad core system , like a i5 750 or a i7 920 , super o/c with a high v core/ and get VERY high spikes of system tdp. This is nothing new !



Hmm I call this incomplete lmao Whers the 5970 power usage lol? They didnt want to make the 480 sound like more power hungry than a dual GPU I guess LOL :lol: 

So your saying other review websites are not compared the same way? It smells fishy here.

I really dont get why you keep defending the 480 TDP lmao Its Reality, cannot be argued. The charts are not what you call "Cherry picked" In fact, TDP in games like Crysis are what we all are looking for. These graphs you posted has a visual trick by making everything smaller lmao But if you look at Numbers you will see how high the 480 TDP is. Why is 5870 CFX power usage is less than a GTX 470?? They need to tell if thats Furemark load or gaming or what program they used. Or I guess, HardOc succeeded to visually mislead nutty and many other people. :wahoo: 

AnandTech are the best and most detailed reviews Iv ever seen.

And yes Liquid is right, the second card always uses less power, maybe because it is not outputting to the actual monitor.


For the 3rd time, a 1000w is Ok for GTX 480 SLI but If you are going to OC the GPUs, you will run in power limitation. @ Stock = Ok.

Note: I didnt expect you to go that far calling Cherry picked lmao
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April 11, 2010 9:40:33 PM

It's critizized for being hot and hungry compared to the 5000s but no1 minded the 4870 x2, which was hot and power hungry. Lol and the 480 is stronger than it and sometimes the 295 even.

Ppl are making these sound alot worse than they r. It will all be outof ur systems once the cards r out, and we have more to choose from. I'm just glad everything is balanced again. Both companies are going strong and users have a choice again.
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 11, 2010 9:44:15 PM

Yes, 4870X2 is hungry but running older tech with 55nm Vs 40nm.

Its just that nutty is not counting 2 factors in the game : $ and Power Consumption. I understand that some people don't care about their card using 150-320w more than another one but some do. Yet, he calls "Cherry Picked",and its not his first time, which I dont see any difference between his charts and AnandTech charts except the "visual" of making the bars look smaller to visually trick people but In Reality if you look at Numbers, you will see how 5870CFX uses less power than a GTX 470 which sounds wrong even to me. Im not saying the 480 is bad, If I had water cooling and $ I would even get 2 and OC the hell out of them :D 

Never jump on conclusions very fast.
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