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SLI and triple monitor questions

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 19, 2011 8:21:19 AM

Hello!

i am starting to look into using nvidia "surround vision" with my system, and have a few questions I hoped you guys could answer.

My current system is:
P55 EVGA SLI mobo (P55)
i7 860 (OC to 3.66)
H50 cooler in push/pull
8GB DDR3 1600
850W corsiar PSU
Antec 900 modded case
7 fans total
2 12" cold cathodes
1 evga gtx 580
1 sata 6GB/s HD
2 sata 3GB/s HD
1 Sata 3GB/s SSD
TV tuner

I can post models if you guys think it matters.

I have 2 1920x1080 monitors, and am looking to get a 3rd, for the surround. I have an old GTX 275 I can use for graphics for the 3rd. I realize that this GPU will not help with SLI, but I am looking to get a 2nd 580 in the near future.

I also realize the limitations of P55 (8x8) when dealng with SLI, but from my understanding the performance loss is very small.

I currently game on 1 monitor, I use the 2nd one for work.


Questions:

Will my PSU power 2 580's?

Ive never had an SLI setup, I usually buy single high end single cards instead, the cards stack right up in the mobo, what kind of heat issues will I have?

I dont fully understand why you would need something like head2go, do the cards not have the capability to use 3 monitors (the 2 580's) in a surround vision setup?

I play a vast array of games, MMO's (wow and rift) FPS (BF and COD) and RTS. will a 3 monitor system work with most games? I remember when BF2142 came out, there was no widescreen support, because it was thought to give an advantage.

Are there any other factors I need to take into consideration before I purchase another monitor, and another 580.


Thanks as always
a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 19, 2011 8:56:38 AM

What are your current monitors brand & model? Are they the same?
Is it new such that it is easy to get the same exact brand & model from the stores?
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July 19, 2011 9:02:19 AM

the monitors are Samsung B2330H, no longer sold retail, but refirbished ones are fairly cheap online, the HD ones (including a TV tuner) are actually cheaper, but have no DVI port, and I heard have color problems. I have actually been debating to get one, so I can watch TV in HD while I work, but I would rather have the quality of the regular B2330H.
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Best solution

a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 19, 2011 9:24:45 AM

mchlebus said:
Hello!
Questions:

1) Will my PSU power 2 580's?

2) Ive never had an SLI setup, I usually buy single high end single cards instead, the cards stack right up in the mobo, what kind of heat issues will I have?

3) I dont fully understand why you would need something like head2go, do the cards not have the capability to use 3 monitors (the 2 580's) in a surround vision setup?

4) I play a vast array of games, MMO's (wow and rift) FPS (BF and COD) and RTS. will a 3 monitor system work with most games? I remember when BF2142 came out, there was no widescreen support, because it was thought to give an advantage.

5) Are there any other factors I need to take into consideration before I purchase another monitor, and another 580.

I numbered your questions for easy reference:
1) Yes. Its enough.
3) Yes. For nVidia, you need 2 cards in SLI.
4) I have Eyefinity setup. Most games are supported, some better than others. I played Prototype, Avatar, Dead Space 1&2, AVP and POP. All have excellent support for triple monitor. L4D 1&2 unfortunately does not. The images are stretched in the side monitors.
5. The bezel of the Samsung B2330H are too fat for me. But since you have 2 of these already, getting the same exact one is most cost effective. You can overlap the bezels of the two side monitors over the center one. This will present thinner overall bezel and there is no light seeping between the monitors if they are overlapped.
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a c 127 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
July 19, 2011 9:43:46 AM

Your PSU is enough for 2 580s. My power usage for 2 580s with both at a load around 100% is around 670W max.

I have no issues with 2 580s in SLI. No driver issues or otherwise. Just know you need to re-enable SLI after a driver update.

My 2 580s sit right next to each other on the X58 motherboard and never get close to exceeding the spec (97C max), though they do run hot as this is acceptable with these cards. 92C max is the hottest I've seen so far.

You do need two cards for 3D/2D Vision surround on 3 monitors.

Regarding monitors, here's good info directly from the Nvidia site:
http://nvidia.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/2667

Other questions can be answered on the Nvidia site as well regarding the 3-monitor setup:
http://www.nvidia.com/object/3d-vision-surround-technol...

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a b U Graphics card
July 19, 2011 9:02:11 PM

You can mix and match graphics cards to do surround gaming but not through Nvidia Surround, you can use something called SoftTH to enable surround gaming with two different cards. Which is free to download, but be warned there is a bit of a learning curve to using it such as editing config files. This program works great and i use it all the time on my older computer with one 5200 fx and one 7950 gx2.
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July 27, 2011 8:41:27 AM

thanks for your replays guys, I have my 3 monitors, but waiting for a good deal on a 2nd 580. I might try the mismatched cards with wow and see what the quality is. my bezels are thick, I selected the best answer just cause I never thought of overlapping them, such a simple solution.

Thanks!
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July 27, 2011 8:44:40 AM

Best answer selected by mchlebus.
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