Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question
Solved

Which video card setup would give me the best performance?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
Share
May 4, 2010 9:31:31 PM

I am trying to determine which video card setup would give me the best performance. First up, would having two GTX 480 cards @ X16 in SLI and a GTX 260 @ X1 (for PhysX) give me better or worse perfomance than three GTX 480 cards in SLI(X16/X8/X8) with PhysX enabled?

Basically....

PCIe slot 1 @ X16: GTX 480 SLI
PCIe slot 2 @ X16: GTX 480 SLI
PCIe slot 3 @ X1: GTX 260 (for PhysX)

vs

PCIe slot 1 @ X16: GTX 480 SLI
PCIe slot 2 @ X8: GTX 480 SLI
PCIe slot 3 @ X8: GTX 480 SLI (with PhysX enabled)

This will determine whether or not I go with the "ASUS P6X58D Premium ATX Intel Motherboard" or the "ASUS Rampage III Extreme ATX Intel Motherboard"

Thanks!
a b U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 7:38:34 AM

Yea... 3-way SLI doesn't scale very well...
And will further increase the Power consumption.

Go for 2 Of them only :) 
m
0
l
Related resources
a c 376 U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 9:53:58 AM

Yeah, I hope you've got an 2560x1600 monitor and a beastly PSU to be considering these setups.
m
0
l
May 5, 2010 10:00:35 AM

This is ridiculous, the advice your offering this poor guy is sad. 1 GTX 260 will give you the same performance as quad sli GTX 50000000000's. There wont be an app/game out there in the next 3 years that will surpass the graphics of a single gtx 260.

I have SLI gtx 260's, I purchased my second one recent, but before that, I was able to run battlefield bad company 2 on the highest graphics, and highest resolution with absolutely no problem, and its not even DX11. Dont waste your money on any of the 400 series.
m
0
l
a c 376 U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 10:24:10 AM

I like how you yourself decided to upgrade from a single GTX 260 but here you are telling others anything more powerful is pointless. Your highest resolution is not other people's highest resolution, that you aren't using a DX11 card means you literally cannot max out the settings in that game and there are more intensive games than BFBC2 anyway.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 10:39:53 AM

crimsonlung said:
This is ridiculous, the advice your offering this poor guy is sad. 1 GTX 260 will give you the same performance as quad sli GTX 50000000000's. There wont be an app/game out there in the next 3 years that will surpass the graphics of a single gtx 260.

I have SLI gtx 260's, I purchased my second one recent, but before that, I was able to run battlefield bad company 2 on the highest graphics, and highest resolution with absolutely no problem, and its not even DX11. Dont waste your money on any of the 400 series.



Wrong, wrong, wrong. Every single performance chart on this site will prove you wrong.

Next!


When it comes to the 480's, because of the insane amounts of heat it produces, I would be very reluctant to even use it in SLI.

Don't go for tri-SLI. It is a waste of cash and unless you are planning to use watercooling, you will also need to invest in one of these:

http://www.crux.se/bilder/progear/Arborwork_horselskydd...

I would probably go for 5870's in crossfire or possible a 5870/5850 and a 5970 to avoid the hassle of dealing with the heat and noice from the 480s.

If you are deternimed to go green, I'd recommend you to either get a massive cooling solution or skip the third card entirely and just use 2X480.
m
0
l
May 5, 2010 12:21:41 PM

Thanks for all of the advice guys! First of all, I don't really have a preference between nVidia and Ati cards. It's just that most of the games I already own have the "optimized for nVidia" logo on the covers and after viewing a few trailers I thought that PhysX was pretty cool and was wanting to try it out. That's all.

I am building my first system and I have over $7k in tax rebates to burn so cost isn't really an issue. I have heard of the heat issues with the GTX 480's but I am planning to use them in a Cooler Master HAF 932 which has excellent air flow (I wish the HAF-X was already out... Oh well).

I decided to go with an Intel I7 920 CPU based on reviews from toms (No offense to AMD, It just seems like the I7's are better this time). I really wanted an I7 980X but I didn't believe that I would get enough of a performance boost in gaming or other applications that I would use (I don't do any video encoding, etc.)

That said, I am really impressed with the 5870 and the 5970. Both cards get great reviews ecerywhere I look and at a cost/performance ratio they seem a better deal than the GTX 480's. If I were to go with the ATI cards, which would give me better performance 2x 5970's or 3x 5870's?

The build I am currently looking at is

Cooler Master HAF 932
ASUS Rampage III Extreme
Intel I7 920 D0 with Prolimatech Megahalem heatsink
Intel 160 GB SSD with WD Caviar Black 1 TB for storage
Corair Dominator 6 GB DDR3
Window 7 Ultimate 64 bit
Antec 1200W PSU
m
0
l
a c 169 U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 2:01:23 PM

What resolution will you play at ?
m
0
l
May 5, 2010 2:15:53 PM

Maziar said:
What resolution will you play at ?

I will be playing at 1920X1200 for now but I am looking at possibly upgarding to 3 monitors for 5760x1200.
m
0
l

Best solution

a b U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 2:53:22 PM

Alright, then.

A few suggestions:

Go for the i7 930 instead of the 920, it comes with a higher multiplier and will therefore be easier to overclock. Going for intel is a good idea since there is not really any point in going AMD if the i7 fits in your budget.

Furthermore, the Phenom II might prove to be a bottleneck if you go cross or trifire.

The 980X is nice, but will as you said provide zero performance gains in games over an overclocked 930. That may or may not change in the future if games start to utlilize more cores, but that will probably not happen for a while.

The 480s perform great, but they run just a bit too hot. In SLI they might just prove to be more trouble than they are worth. PhysX is nice, but not that fantastic.

Furthermore, when you start putting more than two GPUs together, the performance gains are minimal. Especially at 1920x1200, where a single 5870 or 480 will already run pretty much anything you throw at them.
Therefore, the 3X5870 vs 2X5970 question is academic, the 5970s will most likely be faster - but the difference will be so small and the performance already so high, that in reality it doesn't matter.

...Just make sure you have enough cooling. :) 
Share
a c 376 U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 2:56:03 PM

Yeah, an HD5870 for now is a good choice. You can always add an HD5970 in crossfire later if you go for an eyefinity setup.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 2:56:39 PM

Ohhh, and unless you do upgrade your monitor, anything above a 5870 will be overkill.
m
0
l
a c 169 U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 3:45:11 PM

jmack5864 said:
I will be playing at 1920X1200 for now but I am looking at possibly upgarding to 3 monitors for 5760x1200.

Well,5970 would be a good choice.
Because although a HD 5870 suffices for 1920x1200 but for higher resolutions 5970 is a better choice
m
0
l
May 5, 2010 5:23:19 PM

Thanks for the suggestions guys! I think for now I will go with a 5970 and if I run into any games that the 5970 struggles with later on I'll just add another one then.

I think for now I will go with this setup:

Cooler Master HAF 932 (maybe the HAF-X if it comes out in time)
ASUS Rampage III Extreme
Intel I7 920 D0 with Prolimatech Megahalem heatsink
Intel 160 GB SSD with WD Caviar Black 1 TB for storage
Corair Dominator 6 GB DDR3
Window 7 Ultimate 64 bit
Antec 1200W PSU
ATI 5970

Now all I need is to find a good sound card and place an order for the Psyko 5.1 headphones. :D 

Once again, thanks everybody!
m
0
l
May 5, 2010 5:27:25 PM

Best answer selected by jmack5864.
m
0
l
a b U Graphics card
May 5, 2010 6:38:26 PM

You're welcome and good luck! I'm a bit jealous, putting together your dream build with no budget restrictions. :D 
m
0
l
!