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Worth going SLI?

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a b B Homebuilt system
March 4, 2011 6:05:01 PM

Hi guys. I recently built a new system with advice from people on this site, thanks for that :)  Just wondering whether it would be worth getting another GPU to go SLI or is that going to be overkill/bottlenecked?

i5 760 @ Stock (Planning to OC to 3.6-4Ghz)
Stock cooler (Planning to upgrade to CM Hyper 212+)
Corsair XMS3 2x2GB 1600Mhz
ASRock P55 Deluxe
Palit GTX 460 1GB
XFX Pro 750W
Antec 902
500GB Seagate Barracuda 7200rpm

So my question is, do you guys think getting another GTX 460 will be worth it? Am i likely to be massively overheating?

Thanks.

More about : worth sli

March 4, 2011 6:09:27 PM

Having more than one graphics card whether it's ATi's CrossFireX or nVidia's SLi will create higher temperature levels for obvious reasons.

The GTX460 is a very good card on its own but tell, what do you use your system for and do you yourself think it is needed?
a c 84 B Homebuilt system
March 4, 2011 6:51:17 PM

Are you having problems now?
What resolution are you running at?

Run these two tests:

1) Run your games, but lower your resolution and eye candy.
If your FPS increases, it indicates that your cpu is strong enough to drive a better graphics card.

2) Limit your cpu, either by reducing the OC, or, in windows power management, limit the maximum cpu% to something like 70%.
If your FPS drops significantly, it is an indicator that your cpu is the limiting factor, and a cpu upgrade is in order.

It is possible that both tests are positive, indicating that you have a well balanced system, and both cpu and gpu need to be upgraded to get better gaming FPS.


If you want to spend a bit on an upgrade, consider a SSD an additional 4gb of ram, or a second monitor.

If a graphics upgrade is desired, sli could be OK, depending on how well YOUR games respond to sli.
In general, I suggest sticking with one card. Sell the GTX460, and get a GTX580. Anything less, and you may be disappointed by the small improvement.
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March 4, 2011 7:01:43 PM

Having personally just added a second card (Radeon HD 5850 in Crossfire in my case) it can be frustrating and not all games can utilize it well. On the other hand I've been able to turn many of the settings on the games I'm playing to/near maximum levels.

You could pick up a 580 for ~$450, or buy another 460 for ~$200 (complete guesses here) with a chance of selling your current 460 to recoup, or just wait down the road for the next gen.
March 4, 2011 7:06:29 PM

First check the motherboard. Does it support at least x8 / x8 on your PCI Express slots? I couldn't find a "deluxe" card on newegg. Is this your motherboard?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If so, as it only supports x16 / x4 I'd go with a single card vs SLI 460's.

From my experience with CrossFire on an x16 / x4 motherboard I gain almost nothing when I added a second 5770 card.

Now, some on this forum believe the story on SLI with an x16 / x4 motherboard may be different ....
a b B Homebuilt system
March 4, 2011 7:21:30 PM

Only the ASRock P55 Extreme4 supports SLI. It is the only model, in the P55 Series motherboards, that includes the ASRock SLI_Bridge_2S Card.

If your ASRock P55 Deluxe didn't include an SLI bridge then it doesn't handle SLI.
March 4, 2011 7:29:32 PM

With that motherboard ,you could get a cheaper card(9800 gtx)and use it for Physix-but not a whole lot of games support it.The PCI E 2.0 lanes run- 1@x16 and the other@x4.You could add another card but performance will be limited considering the bandwidth limitations.Yes, it would work though,but performance wont be superb.My advice would be,either upgrade the motherboard to something that has at least 2 lanes @x16 or get a better Graphics Card.Take a look at these....just examples<>http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...;><>and this.......http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
a b B Homebuilt system
March 6, 2011 5:49:01 PM

Thanks for the replies guys, my motherboard does support x8/x8 SLI. Also i use my PC for gaming most of the time, so long as i can run Skyrim on near max settings when it comes out though im happy. I think my single 460 should manage that so i think ill leave it for a bit, thanks for the advice guys.
a b B Homebuilt system
March 6, 2011 6:10:20 PM

Have you OCed your 460? Using MSI Afterburner, you should easily be able to get the core/shader/memory clocks to 850/1700/1800 MHz.

If you see artifacts while gaming and OCed, the memory clock needs to be turned down (usually by ~50 MHz). Video memory is tricky to OC sometimes.
a b B Homebuilt system
March 7, 2011 12:09:57 PM

Ill check my temps under heavy gaming and i might consider overclocking. No aftermarket coolers fit on the Palit card though :( 
a b B Homebuilt system
March 7, 2011 3:07:07 PM

My EVGA 460s usually ran in the 60C range when OCed, but they can handle up to about 75C in most cases.

You shouldn't need an aftermarket cooler to OC, since the 460s were designed very well for OCing (either on purpose or coincidentally). They're much cooler than my 470s, which run at ~75C+ when OCed...
March 7, 2011 3:46:32 PM

If you are going to do SLI, do it now, or you may have a hard time finding an identical GPU in a year, or whenever you go for it. I built a rig with one card, thinking that in 6 months or so, I could get another, and go dual graphics card. However I found that my card had been discontinued... what a bummer. Now if I ever want SLI, ill have to buy 2 brand new cards! Good Luck!
March 17, 2011 1:20:50 PM

You don't have to get identical cards; I'm running Crossfire with two Radeon HD 5850 with one from Sapphire Tech and the other from Gigabyte and I'm having no more problems than the average person running crossfire.
!