P5N-E SLI + HD Radeon 6950

I currently have a P5N-E SLI motherboard


Currently I have two xfx 8800GT run in SLI that have provided me with enough graphical power for years,
they have finally run their course and I am thinking of upgrading.

Would a HD Radeon 6950 run with this motherboard?
It seems to be the next equivalent of the 8800GT for this generation which is exactly what I'm after,
not to mention it is good value for money.
It should have the juice to run my photography programs and latest games e.g. skyrim
(I will overclock it also by flashing to the 6970)


Any help would be appreciated.

If the two will not work together in harmony then can you suggest any new motherboards?
(link them from PC Titan if you can)

My computer specs are as follows:

MOBO - Asus P5N-E SLI (2 PCI, 1 PCI-E x1, 2 PCI-E x16, 4 DDR2 DIMM, Audio, Gigabit LAN, IEEE-1394)
CPU - DualCore Intel Core 2 Duo E8500, 3200 MHz (9.5 x 337)
RAM - 2 GB DDR2-800 DDR2 SDRAM x 2
GPU - XFX 8800GT Nvidia (512 MB) x 2 in SLI
SOUND - Realtek ALC883 @ nVIDIA nForce 430i (MCP51)
HARD DRIVE - ST375084 0AS SCSI Disk Device (750 GB, 7200 RPM, SATA-II)
POWER - PowerCool 850W PC-850AUBA Quad 12v V2.2 80 Efficiency PSU - 850AUBA
Windows 7 Ultimate with DX11

Thanks in advance.
24 answers Last reply
More about radeon 6950
  1. Hi, I have that board with an e5400 and was unable to run a XFX 6850, yet it ran fine on my cheap G31 based board.

    I believe some nvidia chipsets have issues with higher-end Radeons.

    I'd check the returns policy to be sure.
  2. Q9550+XFX 6870 Black Edition FTW !!! didn't get the 6950/6970 as i was short on funds. :/

    (I will overclock it also by flashing to the 6970)
    manufacturers learn't of this cheap way to upgrade cards so AMD but a lock on the BIOS modding thingy...so i think you'd be out of options to mod 6950 bios into a 6970.
  3. Hi, more information from the Asus site:


    You are unlikely to get this working with the P5N-E SLI. I solved it by buying a cheap 775 board for £25 and binning the P5N-E SLI.

    I can't believe the duff advice on this thread, clearly they don't own this product. Yes it is a great card but it doesn't answer the actual question.
  4. :lol: i was one of the members who refereed a new board to an OP(not long ago-maybe a year or so ago) cos he had an Asus P5N-E sli board - and i came a cross a thread like yours only on OCN and they also mentioned how bad that board was...for OC'ing and the troubles with later gen GPU's.

    I can't believe the duff advice on this thread

    sir as a newbie yourself - you don't grasp the extent of your comments. mods can penalize you for your behaviour. Some P5N-E boards were really awesome to work with, some ...well... most were dodgy. that doesn't mean ALL of them are.

    FYI - if you look at OP.

    site and OP mentions that PCI-E slots are rated at x16

    but what's not mentioned is the version. last time i checked. PCI-E 2.0 cards are backwards compatible with PCI-E 1.0 slots. Here's the issue in fine print: PCI-E 2.0 cards can run in a PCI-E 1.1, 1.0b slot but nadda on a 1.0a slot

    so i think the bigger issue here is, is the PCI-E slot on OP's mobo a PCI-E 1.0a, 1.0b , 1.1 or 2.0(i doubt its the latest)

    @ pb2011 - i think you drank too much duff :lol:
  5. It depends on the cards version as they did put a lock on the later models. The card shouldn't be locked, and I'm only unlocking the shaders which can be done quite simply.

    Cheers for the link peterb2011, it seems this mobo is completely useless. I've had trouble from it before...
    I don't have much knowledge in the mobo field, can anyone post any suggestions as to what I may use?

    The processor is 775 so It'll have to be another 775. But I'm not sure about checking compatibility with cards. Will I need DDR3?

    Cheers for the quick responses!

    (I think the boards a 2.2 and the card a 2.1, in writing it looks like it should work but I'm glad I've checked here first)
  6. Sorry wasn't meaning to insult but I think it's really out of order to give misleading advice without any qualification to do so, especially to another new member.

    I went through a lot of heartache with my Radeon, including making up cables and adaptors to run it from a separate power supply.

    Newer, higher end Radeons simply do not work (at all or reliably?) with this board.

    It is not a criticism of a board launched in 2005 though. Asus don't have an open ended commitment to test and release BIOS upgrades 6-7 years later, annoying as it is and it's certainly not a criticism of the Radeon which is amazing for the money.

    Apologies to the person concerned. However please be more careful in future.
  7. for a 775 board at this point of time , you'd have a better time looking it up on craiglist or ebay.

    (I think the boards a 2.2 and the card a 2.1,
    huh? you mean your mobo has a PCI-E 2.2 slot ? :ouch:

    Will I need DDR3?
    if mobo has DDR3 slots then get DDR3 dimms, if it has DDR2 slots then get/reuse DDR2 dimms

    *this came to mind - some quick recommends;

    790i sli boards
    asus rampage formula
    asus P5E3 premium
    asus maximus II formula or the gene

    ***if you can find either they would be awesome for OC'ing and crossfiring in the future
    Apologies to the person concerned. However please be more careful in future.
    i hope i haven't offended you mate...?

    * some some finds;


    in all if the boards, you could use your old ddr2 from the existing build.
    so for 70 bucks i think you should settle with the P45 P5Q-E
  8. No, not at all. I was just hoping not to get modded on my second post!

    I actually got a lot out of my P5NE-SLI and actually once you understand its quirks, it overclocks reasonably. I could run my E5400 (2.7GHz) at 3.6GHz. Finding out the hard way with the Radeon was extremely painful though!

    In fact it's probably been the mainboard I've owned longest since a 440BX.
  9. Quote:
    In fact it's probably been the mainboard I've owned longest since a 440BX.
    :lol: wow then i suppose both of us go a long way back with pc hardware.

    hmmm - okay so you're one of those guys who got the OC working well. 3.6 is a really good OC considering most people couldn't even push past 3.2
  10. FYI The board I got was a Zotac G31 Value for £25 and it worked fine with my CPU, RAM and the Radeon 6850 even with a generic 400W PSU.

    This is my rig until Ivy bridge launches (I waited so long for bulldozer!).

    I also bought a £8 E4400 second hand and used an old Radeon 5450 in the P5N which worked fine and is now in use elsewhere.
  11. Lol, 386 days for me.

    P5N suffers voltage sag issues, contains weird "frequency holes" and does bizarre things with lower multipliers. I guess I should have listened to what people said about Intel chipsets, but then I'm the only man alive who never had an issue with VIA in the Athlon days.

    There's a great guide for working around these online. The e5400 helped too 800MHz bus and the newer Wolfdale revision. I think actually thats the key, the power regulation is a bit marginal and the 45nm shrink gives better overhead. These things never really worked well with quad cores for the same reason.

    I got nowhere with the e4200 I originally had with it 2.7GHz or so. So I spent the first 2 years or so thinking the P5N was total junk!

    As you can tell I'm actually quite fond of my P5N all things considered. Finances probably meant it lived much longer that expected. But IB it is in a few months.
  12. I'm only after one card, I don't really see much point in SLI or crossfire as it costs a lot more than it's worth, not to mention I've had issues with power in past computers.

    I'm starting to feel way in over my head now!

    I only wanted to upgrade my GPU... now I'm looking at a new board, cpu and gpu?
    The reason I'm after the 6950 is because of it's great price and it'll last, I can't afford to spend too much money on a new mobo...

    Will one card really bottleneck my CPU? I could always overclock slightly as they are at stock speeds.


    ^^ will that run the card?
  13. Or the deluxe for £6 more
  14. Quote:
    contains weird "frequency holes" and does bizarre things with lower multipliers
    that my friend is cos of the nvidia chip on the board. If you had followed up on the 750i sli noard issues...then you'd know it was the same. If your board had dual lan with teaming tech that nvidia were the first to come out with, then your OC's would've been shot down like an acecombat practise session.

    those fsb holes were horrible!!! it was enough to put me off buying a xfx 750i sli board and decided to get the RE X48 mobo

    @ werner123 - thas why i suggested those LGA775 boards that are OC capable.
  15. sorry for double posting;

    yeah the one you've found is good - though keep in mind the size and quality of the heatsinks over the vrm's/mosfets show how they are designed to deliver power to your cpu to gve you an overlcok. getting something cheap cos of credit crunch and then trying to make it do what its not built will help you see the 4th of July on your case

    on the asus boards - i've seen people push your E8500 to 4.0GHZ with a few tweaks.

    for slightly more and better value; http://www.pc-titan.com/product_info.php?info=p24133_ASUS-P5Q-Deluxe--P45--dual-PC2-6400U-DDR2---90-MIB4G0-G0EAY00Z-.html



    * you'll thank me later after making the purchase with the ROG cos of all the neat bells and whistles you get with the baord...ofcourse you can also get on the P5Q-E boards
  16. I'm edging towards the ASUS Maximus GENE II as its just about affordable.
    I was heading towards the deluxe but the GENE seems more worthwhile.

    I'd be happy to overclock but I'm wary of heat temperatures.
    It doesn't help that the fan on my PSU has stopped working too...
    Its already sat here without the side on the case fanning it with my hand! :)

    I probably should squeeze a bit more juice out of them though,
    It's been a while since I OC'd.

    so the above mobo, 2 x 3.6 (estimate) OC and a 6950 should all run fine?

    Cheers lutfij for the clear information and provided links.
  17. might i add that you'd need good,clean and consistent power delivered to your board so make sure you have a reliable PSU to power all your stuff inside that case.

    so this add a lil more advice to you;
    get a good PSU if you don't have one
    get a cheap aftermarket cooler - preferably the Hyper 212+ cos its so damn good for its price...could also look at the Hyper 212 evo.

    review of the Maximus II Gene
    Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 "E0" 3.0GHz
    Motherboard: Asus mATX ROG Maximus II Gene P45
    Memory: Buffalo Firestix DDR2-1066 4GB
    Graphics Card: NVidia GTX260 896MB
    Power Supply: Tuniq Ensemble 1200w
    CPU Cooling: OCZ Gladiator MAX
    Hard Disk: DiamondMax 22 500-GB SATA 3Gb/s
    Graphics Drivers: Geforce WHQL 190.38
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate x64 SP2

    in it the reviewer pushed the E8400 to 4.32Ghz... :ouch:

    FYI - i was looking at this board before pulling the trigger on the Maximus III Formula

    cheers mate!

    To buy a new lga775 board is a waste, you might as well just save up and get yourself a next gen sandy bridge build. Don't waste money on old tech.
    very true indeed but not all people are in equal stature to get a whole new upgrade path. I once was in the same seat as OP ... not having enough money to get the stuff nor was i able to wait it out. so i slowly worked my way through the parts.

    ** though if OP can produce a realistic bdget for all the components than maybe we can prescribe something...though i doubt it as prices in UK are really high including VAT.
  18. Well it turns out that PC-Titan is a very dodgy site indeed, so I won't be going there... but it was helpful to see products i suppose.

    This means I'm going to have to shell out a little more money - I'm hoping not to spend more than £300 on both the card and mobo.

    The card is also outdated but the newer version can still be overclocked fairly easily.

    Cheers for everyone's help!
  19. so have you pulled your trigger on a purchase or are you still looking?


    GPU is the best out there - with that DCII cooler - you'll see a good amount of overclocking headroom - though remember that most of the heat is being blown into your case thus your CPU will recyclung warm air through its vents cos of the 6950.
  20. I'll be sure to pick myself up a CPU cooler, they shouldn't make much of an impact on my bank balance!

    Yeah, I think I'm pulling the trigger on the GENEII and EAH6950 DCII/2DI4S/2GD5

    Hopefully I'll have a computer that can cope with today's demands shortly :)
  21. I just wanted to make one last check with everyone that the EAH6950 DCII/2DI4S/2GD5 is compatible with the Maximus GENE II and that these two are in turn compatible with my other parts...

    The specs of my current set-up can be found at the top

    EDIT: I'm struggling to find the GENE - would it be better to go with the Maximus II Formula?
  22. :) if you can't find the gene, the formula is the cream of the crop only bigger - more sata ports, dual lan, x-fi riser card, more OC'ing headrooom cos of better cooling...should i continue :) ???
  23. No need, I think you've given me the general idea!
    I've just shelled out for it and the board should be in the post making its way to me shortly.
  24. just remember, by overclocking headroom i meant that you can sustain the overclock for a longer time, not getting an overclock of something like 5GHz on air :P
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