ATI 5870 & NVIDIA GTX280 on one MB (ATI for Graphics&Nvidia for Physx)

I just saw that Mafia II recommends a separate dedicated NVIDIA card to support Physx. That sparked a question.

I am currently using a MSI 790FX-GD70 Motherboard, 8G of Ram, Windows 7 64, and the AMD x6 1090T processor. I was running a GTX280 video card then upgraded to an ATI5870.

Does anyone know if I reinstall the GTX280 back into my PC if it will cause any issues? Will both cards work together? Will the ATI 5870 drive the graphics and the GTX280 just sit quietly and run the Physx portion of the software without causing any conflicts?

If someone has tried it, please reply confirming if that configuration will work. It will save me a headache trying to figure it out on my own.

If no one knows I am willing to give it a shot. Not sure how I would be able to test it to make sure the NVIDIA card is running the Physx part of the software.

Any input is appreciated.
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  1. I think I found the answer to my own question. The link below is a step by step on how to do it.

    http://forums.amd.com/forum/messageview.cfm?catid=13&threadid=128614
  2. Yes you can do it, but it is not officially supported by Nvidia. They have disabled physx on their cards when an ATI card is detected, but if you use the 256.15 beta drivers they forgot to disable hybrid physx so it works. After you install the drivers you right click on your desktop and go to display, and hit detect. it should show a second monitor that is greyed out. click on it and you can select to run it on the gtx 280. Select connect anyway on VGA, then hit apply. Now you should have physx. Just try a game that uses it such as Batman AA and see if you can run it without a horrendous framrate drop. If so your physx is working. I have this working with an HD 5750 and a 9600gt. By the way, some games say my card doesn't support Physx, but just ignore that. It still works. Google hybrid physx for more info. There are other methods to get it to work but this way you don't have to patch anything or apply a mod. Plus you have a newer driver with better support for new games.
  3. That's not entirely true, Andon48. Technically, yes those beta drivers should work. However, I tested it out myself and no, they did not work for me. I tried downloading them from Nvidia's site as well as from Guru3D. The PhysX option is simply not in the NV control panel. It's possible I was missing something, but when I did the GenL patch V1.03 using the 197.45 drivers it worked fine.

    OP: Yes it will totally work. The GT280 is overkill for PhysX, however, since you already have it then you might as well use it.
    Here's some info: http://www.ngohq.com/graphic-cards/17706-hybrid-physx-mod-v1-03-v1-04ff.html

    EDIT: Looks like they made patch V1.04ff to work with the newest 256 NV drivers. I just found this out so I'll test it later maybe tonight.
  4. wolfram23 said:
    That's not entirely true, Andon48. Technically, yes those beta drivers should work. However, I tested it out myself and no, they did not work for me. I tried downloading them from Nvidia's site as well as from Guru3D. The PhysX option is simply not in the NV control panel. It's possible I was missing something, but when I did the GenL patch V1.03 using the 197.45 drivers it worked fine.

    OP: Yes it will totally work. The GT280 is overkill for PhysX, however, since you already have it then you might as well use it.
    Here's some info: http://www.ngohq.com/graphic-cards/17706-hybrid-physx-mod-v1-03-v1-04ff.html

    EDIT: Looks like they made patch V1.04ff to work with the newest 256 NV drivers. I just found this out so I'll test it later maybe tonight.


    I have this working on my computer right now. You are correct that there is no physx options tab in the control panel, but if you look at the global options in 3d settings there is an option to select a gpu to run cuda and physx operations. In the pull down it shows your nvidia card. Check it if it isn't by default (mine was) and Physx works. I can play Arkham Asylum with physx on high (and it looks great btw) so it definitely works. It's kind of strange though, I see no improvement in fluidmark, but physx runs great in games and I got a 500 point increase in 3DMark Vantage.
  5. Ah well then I guess it was just my bad for being unfamiliar with NV control panel.

    And yeah, Vantage scores get a big boost. I tried it with PPU on, scored P31.5k and with PPU off scored P25k, so that's a massive 6.5k increase in score.
  6. Thanks for the help. I installed my GTX280, followed your advice and it now runs Physx and CUDA with my ATI 5870. Batman AA runs great and uses the Physx function on the GTX280. I can also run CUDA programs in BOINC. Very pleased.
  7. tmax said:
    Thanks for the help. I installed my GTX280, followed your advice and it now runs Physx and CUDA with my ATI 5870. Batman AA runs great and uses the Physx function on the GTX280. I can also run CUDA programs in BOINC. Very pleased.


    Just out of curiosity, have you tried Fluidmark? My fluidmark score sucks for some reason but games run great. Also, if you have Mirror's Edge does it tell you Physx isn't supported on your card when you enable it? Just curious if everybody's is like this or not.
  8. Andon48 said:
    Just out of curiosity, have you tried Fluidmark? My fluidmark score sucks for some reason but games run great. Also, if you have Mirror's Edge does it tell you Physx isn't supported on your card when you enable it? Just curious if everybody's is like this or not.


    There's a few games, Mirror's Edge is one, that you have to delete a couple of the physx .dll files for it to work. I can't remember exactly which, I think there was 2... I guess try googling for that and you should turn something up. There's also a patch for the game for PhysX but I'm fairly sure you need to do both things. I think there was one other game you have to do that for as well. (might be physxcore.dll and physxextensions.dll but I know there's one .dll you need to keep... can't remember exactly)

    As for FluidMark, on the newest build my GT240 does about 22 FPS with iirc 60k particles from 3 spawn points.
  9. I do not have Fluidmark or Mirror's edge so I dont know. BOINC detected the CUDA processor after the driver install. That was my first indication that it was working properly. I downloaded the Batman AA demo as a secondary test and it works very well.

    I have not tried all of my games or applications yet but so far no significant gain or loss in frame rate. I ran the Heaven Benchmark and it was slightly lower with the GTX280 added. World in Conflict and Just Cause 2 benchmarks were both slightly higher with the GTX280 added.

    Overall this was easier than I expected. The nice thing is a new NVIDIA card (400 series) is not required. The older 200 series works great and, like Wolfram23 stated, may even be overkill for dedicated Physx use.
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