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Can I use Dual Graphic Cards on my Supermico Mobo?

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November 21, 2011 5:55:11 PM

Hi,
This is the first time I am thinking to install two graphic cards on a system. I currently have Super Micro X7DA8 Mobo, and I wish to install two Nvidia GTX580 or GTX590 on this board

http://www.supermicro.com/products/motherboard/Xeon1333...

From the specs that I read, it mentions having two PCI-E slots? Did I read that correct? If so, can I install the two cards?

I do not need this system for gaming, I have no use of SLi or Crossfire, my purpose is for the 3d application to detect the two cards, and during rendering it should be able to use both the GPU's.

I read that on a forum that, one does not need to SLi to install multiple boards, read it here :

http://jeffpatton.net/2010/11/gtxquadrotesla-my-opinion...

Thanks in advance! :) 
December 31, 2011 11:18:31 PM

First off, I am not 3D-apps/Video-Editing person. I do not know anything about those. Nonetheless, my tips will help you a bit.

To explain the following 2 lines from X7DA8 page,
"1 (x16) PCI-e slot
1 (x4) PCI-e (using x16) slot"
the mobo has 2 PCIE slots. The 1st slot has 16 lanes, the 2nd one has 4 lanes but it uses the same physical slot as 16-lane slot. In contrast, look at Supermicro h8dc8. You'll see that board has 2 independent 16-lanes PCIE slots. Basically, more lanes mean more data transport.

In SLI mode, one video card renders half of current scene, the 2nd card renders the other half. Since they transport data through SLI bridge, (I don't think) 2 independent 16-lane PCIEs matter much (i.e for gaming).

But without SLI bridge, I would think that having 2 independent 16-lane slots will start to matter for 3D-app.

As a side note, I am not a gamer but I did built a couple of gaming rigs using Supermicro H8DC8's and H8DCE's with dual videos in SLI configuration. These boards are server motherboards but I find them very stable for gaming too.
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