I'm looking for an upgrade to my 9800 GTX. I was considering picking up a pair of 5830's as I do game on PC quite a bit and I was leaning towards using Eyefinity.
However, I'm fairly sure that might CPU might be a bottleneck, and if so, which one should I pick up that wouldn't be a problem? And yes, overclocking is a possibility.
Also, would I be better off purchasing a single 5870 or 5830 CF OC? I've seen the CF come extremely close to (if not match) the performance of a 5870 for around the price of one card, even though I'd rather not drop 400 dollars all at once.
What is your CPU?
As Eyefinity is extremely GPU-intensive most modern CPU's should have very minimal if any bottlenecking.
For lower-resolutions like 1440x900x3 you could probably get away with a 5850 (overclocking would really help).
For the lower-end dual 5770's or a single 5850 is your best bet.
Higher up dual 5850's will drive even 1920x1200x3 quite nicely (once again overclocking will help).
To clear it up a 5970 is 2 5870's in 1 card, it's the same thing as CrossFire.
For your monitors I suggest using 16:10 monitors (ie 1440x900, 1680x1050, 1920x1200) as 16:9 (1280x720, 1600x900, 1920x1080) look very wide and short.
I've got a C2Q Q6600 - and three monitors which are all 16:9 up to 1920x1080. I understand that Eyefinity is more GPU intensive than anything, I'm just not sure how much processing power I'd need to run a game with DX10/11 on high settings WITH Eyefinity.
A Q6600 might bottleneck on CPU-intensive games that don't use 4 cores but for the most part you should be fine, a slight overclock to 2.8GHz-3.2GHz should be quite easy and worth it though.
For a 1920x1080x3 setup you would want 2 x 5850's in CF to run most games on high.
Well, I do have a 64-bit OS and 4GB of RAM, but my motherboard simply will not allow an overclock for my CPU. There's no way to do it via BIOS, and any program I've used either gives me a BSOD or the PC simply locks up. I'll probably have to upgrade to a CPU with a higher clock speed when I upgrade my video card.