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GTX 460 SOC / Hawk SLI questions

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October 4, 2011 9:14:10 AM

well bugger me - i just typed virtually all my post and hit the browser back button - not the 1st time, grrrrrr

I'm now typing my post in notepad and copy/pasting here to avoid me busting a blood vessel :o 





Hi all


SLI install / setup help needed. 2nd GTX 460 arriving later today.

My system:

Coolermaster HAF-X
Coolermaster Coolermaster GX 750W PSU
Asrock Z68 Extreme4 mobo
i5-2500K (unlocked to 4.2GHz)
8GB G.Skill DDR3 1600MHz
Gigabyte GTX 460 Super Overclock

I am only using 1 lane, no other cards installed in the system (PCI / PCI-E) although I should also be receiving an Asus Xonar DG (PCI) later today.

The 2nd GTX 460 will be MSI N460GTX Hawk

both cards are capable of similar OC - the Gigabyte I have at moment runs (when gaming) GPU 900MHz, shader 1780MHz, memory 1010MHz effective 4040MHz)


I am usually very good at finding guides / video tutorials but am struggling here

1. Can I access clocks (via MSI Afterburner) for both cards to ensure they have the same OC GPU clock? Will there be a drop down menu to select between the cards or should I just let them run at stock speeds - meaning both will be limited to 780MHz as this is the lower of the 2 (MSI Hawk)?

2. How does one actually install them / enable SLI? I have identified the lane I need to use for best results but is it as simple as physically inserting card into mobo, connecting the bridge, rebooting and enabling SLI in control panel?

3. How easy is it to turn one or both cards off? I ask because I often watch movies / TV on this case and SLI is not needed for that - plus my CPU has onboard graphics that are fine for movie playback (Intel HD 3000)

4. The power draw on my current GTX 460 is considerable, 2 x high overclocked GTX 460 might push me nearer the limit of my PSU, 750w - right / wrong?


I am certain there will be a few more questions during the course of the day - subject to the part arriving - already 2 days late, this is the 3rd day of waiting (thanks OCUk)

Any help a bonus



Thanks in advance
Chaz
October 4, 2011 3:18:52 PM

so I understand MSi Afterburner will give me a drop down to select and tweak settings for both cards once installed

having looked at temperatures for both cards (on reviews, not in my system) it would seem the MSI N460 GTX Hawk runs a cooler so I should uninstall the current single Gigabyte SOC and use this as my 2nd card, the Hawk being the top card ?


http://www.behardware.com/articles/809-22/roundup-14-ge...


do I need to install nvidia driver for both cards or is the 2nd card clever enough through the SLI bridge to use just 1 driver - if this makes little sense please bear with me I've never SLI before

thanks again for any help
chaz
Related resources
October 4, 2011 5:14:17 PM

well it all seems to be working fine according to MSI Afterburner which overclocks the primary card and matches those settings on the 2nd card, both appear to be capable of the following -

gpu 900MHz
shader 1800MHz
Memory 1050MHz (effective 4200MHz)

I've set this up with a slightly more aggressive fan profile due to the airflow restriction on top card - although my case runs very cool anyway



earlier this is what I got from single Gigabyte GTX 460 SOC on BC2

1920x1080, max settings, 32xCSAA, 16xAF, vysnc and hbao disabled, played a round online - Atacama Desert, conquest, 32 players - nice big fire fights inc tanks / helos, nice open map

fraps: average framerate 73.627



so let's see...



cheers
chaz
a c 171 Î Nvidia
October 4, 2011 6:26:25 PM

Looks to me as though you've spent the day answering your own questions.
October 4, 2011 8:50:43 PM

haha yeah cheers, ive also been posting on my clan website (ATF, from the USA - although Im from UK) and got some help there

Ive fixed it all up and it's absolutely rocking!!!! :wahoo:  :wahoo:  :wahoo: 

although there's no doubt it's a bit noiser with the MSI in there also - I may switch them around, the Gigabyte is now 2nd card but if I use the GB as 1st card the fans will stay near silent (60c = 40% default fan speed) whilst the MSI
fans rise up to 70% speed when it is the 1st card - what do you think? decibels the only consideration





the results are STUNNING

played another round as a test...

1920x1080, max settings, 32xCSAA, 16xAF, vysnc and hbao disabled, online - Atacama Desert, conquest, 32 players - nice big fire fights inc tanks / helos, nice open map

appeared to be levelling out between 110-120fps


granted my tests are not scientific so I will endeavour to do some benchmarking - single player mission, 3dmark etc


holy cow! just got to the end of this post and realised i havnt overclocked the buggers (other than their factory SOC), that means the SOC is clocked down slightly lol - I may as well OC the hawk at least up to the default GB clocks



i did have some problems when 1st powered up after enabling the SLI - red color bleeding and tearing on BC2 & BF3 and very poor performance, did some more research - think the memory clock was set way too low, but also I made the error of tweakig multiple items (I also turned the sli brisge around at same time and ensured it was firmly pressed on both card) so I cant be sure what the issue was, the memory was clocked down to half the default speed, found via GPU-Z - anyhoo up and running proper now

if only they would open some caspian border servers up again on the BF3 beta :) ))))

a c 171 Î Nvidia
October 4, 2011 9:02:15 PM

I'm running two identical GTX560's in SLi but if I weren't I would try either running the hotter card as the secondary or OC the the slower card and see if the temps rise to match. With identical cards the heat difference is still going to be about 5c or 6c both at idle and load.
October 4, 2011 9:21:40 PM

That was very entertaining thread, good job cps1974.
October 4, 2011 10:33:40 PM

thanks guys

seems to be only 1 or 2 degrees between them most of the time, either at idle under 30c or at load 59/60c. well pleased, both are set to the GB default speeds (815/1630/4000), the performance is out of this world - i remember the days of my ati radeon 9800 pro (even that was a shop bought replacement for something even feebler that came with my 1st PC, a dell)

1st indicatons suggest arround 70-80fps in BF3 at ultra settings, im sure that will drop with caspian border by 10/20fps (64 player madness is back on the battlefield!) but ill do some propers test tomorrow, i wont post them unless anyone is interested - plus i'm confident I can push them both comfortably to 900/1800/4200

this is all in the 1st system Ive ever built, yippee

cheers



a c 171 Î Nvidia
October 5, 2011 3:13:23 PM

cps1974 said:
thanks guys

seems to be only 1 or 2 degrees between them most of the time, either at idle under 30c or at load 59/60c. well pleased, both are set to the GB default speeds (815/1630/4000), the performance is out of this world - i remember the days of my ati radeon 9800 pro (even that was a shop bought replacement for something even feebler that came with my 1st PC, a dell)

1st indicatons suggest arround 70-80fps in BF3 at ultra settings, im sure that will drop with caspian border by 10/20fps (64 player madness is back on the battlefield!) but ill do some propers test tomorrow, i wont post them unless anyone is interested - plus i'm confident I can push them both comfortably to 900/1800/4200

this is all in the 1st system Ive ever built, yippee

cheers

That's what my cards run at by default and tbh there is only a couple of frames per second gained over the 822mhz clockspeed.
October 5, 2011 5:48:28 PM

right again you are mousemonkey, seems little sense in oc'ing further (for gaming) as a few fps here or there at that level wont make any noticeable difference - stock speeds for me until i need more which i hope is some way off yet - lets see what caspian border map runs like with 64 players...

cheers again
a c 171 Î Nvidia
October 5, 2011 5:51:05 PM

No worries mate, I'm glad you're happy with your rig.
October 5, 2011 6:39:41 PM

im such a newb, seems like good ettiqute to use the green thumps up button so have done (but it hasnt registered?)

on with BF3 beta :) 
October 5, 2011 6:48:43 PM

I have noticed that no one typically uses the green thumbs up, unless is comments on a news article, or something like that.

Its better to select best answer, when it is applicable. Seeing as how you answered your own question, you probably don't have to pick a best answer.

October 5, 2011 7:16:58 PM

haha now I see, thanks
a c 171 Î Nvidia
October 5, 2011 7:33:02 PM

thesnappyfingers said:
I have noticed that no one typically uses the green thumbs up, unless is comments on a news article, or something like that.

Its better to select best answer, when it is applicable. Seeing as how you answered your own question, you probably don't have to pick a best answer.

And this is a discussion thread (hence the thumbs) not a question thread. ;) 
October 5, 2011 8:06:55 PM

we better lock this one down before we (I) digress further lol

so if one uses the "ask the community now", the author can select the best answer? if so, cool, I like that

ta
a c 171 Î Nvidia
October 5, 2011 8:24:01 PM

By "lock down" do you mean like this?

[:thegreatgrapeape:7]
!