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Radeon or Nvidea for 3 monitor gaming.

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 14, 2011 10:36:53 AM

Hello,

Im putting the below pc together for the purpose of playing BF3 on a 3 monitor set up. Im tossing and turning with the ideas of who's video card to use. For now I have about $400 bucks to throw at the video card. Not to crazy to add any more money in the future for it, maybe another $200 bucks. I know that Radeon has the EYEFINITY which seems to make it easy to do the 3 monitor thing and it seems they can use any monitors. The Nvidea product seems that all monitors must be identical and I dont know how the set up process works or how to accomplish it. Is it hard to do. Im truely a newbie and really dont want to go into much trouble getting it done. Whats your thoughts?

1.EVGA P67 Micro SLI LGA 1155, Intel P67 chipset
2.Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3 GHz (3.7 GHz Turbo), Quad-Core, 6 MB L3 Cache
3.Cooler Master Hyper TX3
4.SAPPHIRE 100311-2SR Radeon HD 6970 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX
Support Video Card with Eyefinity
5.Mushkin Enhanced Redline 4 GB (2 x 2 GB) 240-Pin DDR3-1600 Kit, Dual-Channel Desktop Memory Kit
6.Western Digital Caviar Black 750 GB 750 GB, 7200 RPM, 32 MB Cache SATA 3Gb/s
7. Sony Optiarc DVD Burner 24x DVD Burner
8.Corsair CX600 V2 600 W ATX12V, EPS12V, 80 PLUS-Certified
a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 11:45:42 AM

BF 3 in a 3 monitor setup?
BF3 it's already a hardcore droppin vga's knees in 1 monitor, in 3 monitor it's insane.

My 2x GTX 460 that's is a bit faster than gtx 580 (if the game scales well), and this system couldnt max BF3 in 1680x1050 without some fps drops (maybe it's the beta.. maybe the game is too much taxing, dont really know)
But for a 3 monitor GTX 580 x2 would be a minimum.
For AMD I think 2x 6970 would be the minimum IMO.

Dont even think playing that game with 3 monitors in a single GPU card in hands
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 11:51:19 AM

I know that u have 400 bucks right now.. but really, please, consider a powerful vga system. Even if u buy now 1 card, and buy another in the future
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a c 171 U Graphics card
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October 14, 2011 12:06:14 PM

Remember that if you go with Nvidia, you need an SLI setup right off the bat. You can use a single AMD card.

Considering how taxing the game it, you'll want SLI'd 550s/560s or 6970. You can always lower settings if you need to.
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October 14, 2011 12:34:47 PM

vitornob said:
I know that u have 400 bucks right now.. but really, please, consider a powerful vga system. Even if u buy now 1 card, and buy another in the future



vga system????
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 12:44:08 PM

dudeguzman said:
vga system????

VGA system = VGA array = VGA cards = all vga related stuff :) 
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 12:55:11 PM

4745454b said:
Remember that if you go with Nvidia, you need an SLI setup right off the bat. You can use a single AMD card.

Considering how taxing the game it, you'll want SLI'd 550s/560s or 6970. You can always lower settings if you need to.


Well, I'm pretty sure my 2x gtx 460 have a 6970 similar performance, and even that system cant hold the game at max settings in 1680x1050.

1- he'll need to play in med to use the all 3 monitors,
2- Or it's pretty useless the possibility of playing with 3 monitors in a single 6970 since it's not powerful enough to use high settings.

Thinking that way there is no difference in using a AMD or nvidia, since neither powerful enough to use the 3 monitors (even if that have the outputs)
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October 14, 2011 12:55:28 PM

I'd say 2 6950s for $420-$530 depending on which brands you buy(powercolor is the cheapest, and to me brands don't matter too much). 2 6950's nearly defenitely won't get you max graphics at full fps but so won't any other setup that isn't $700. Just turn the graphics down a touch or turn AA off, besides, going into eyefinity or surround or whatever with 3+monitors pretty much automatically throws your framerate out of the window anyway so you can't expect to be able to max graphics without paying the price in fps. If you're low on money, don't get an nvidia, radeons are much cheaper with the same performance, e.g a 6950 at $210+ has the same performance and sometimes more than a gtx 570 which is $340+. Only get an nvidia if your system depends on it like if your system supports sli but not crossfire or if your system works better with them.
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 1:04:28 PM

@VITORNOB: Yes and No (microstuttering)

"Two GeForce GTX 460 1 GB cards in SLI or Radeon HD 6850s in CrossFire beat down a single GeForce GTX 570 or Radeon HD 6970 most of the time. While the performance potential of these solutions is very high, keep in mind is that resolutions beyond 1080p may require more than 1 GB of on-board memory for unconstrained frame rates, especially when using high levels of anti-aliasing.

Again, both this pairing and the one above get dropped to honorable mentions as a result of our findings in Micro-Stuttering And GPU Scaling In CrossFire And SLI coverage." - Sept 2011 Best GPU for the money

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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 1:07:54 PM

@OP

I'd say for simple 3 monitor setup under $400, that 6970 is the best you can do right now. You could do crossfire 6850s or SLI GTX 460s, but the setup is more difficult and you could see microstuttering.

That said, don't expect to be playing at full resolution, ultra setting eyefinity in BF3. You'll probably have to drop some details/AA settings to play BF3 at those resolutions. But in other games, sure.

I have a 5770 that drives games like Dirt (2/3) just fine across three non-equal size monitors.
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 2:01:46 PM

inanition02 said:
@VITORNOB: Yes and No (microstuttering)

"Two GeForce GTX 460 1 GB cards in SLI or Radeon HD 6850s in CrossFire beat down a single GeForce GTX 570 or Radeon HD 6970 most of the time. While the performance potential of these solutions is very high, keep in mind is that resolutions beyond 1080p may require more than 1 GB of on-board memory for unconstrained frame rates, especially when using high levels of anti-aliasing.

Again, both this pairing and the one above get dropped to honorable mentions as a result of our findings in Micro-Stuttering And GPU Scaling In CrossFire And SLI coverage." - Sept 2011 Best GPU for the money


Yes, I know bout the microstunering, I dont really see this microstunering in my system, or its a massive coincidence that the microstunering happening ALWAYS in the demanding parts in my config and I'm mistakenly calling microstunering = lag. Just dont know.

Usually I get a avg performance higher than gtx 580 to be true (comparing with a friend with similar setup but with gtx 580).
But I do agree with u, its better to have a single card than sli/crossfire, less problems, heat, noise IMO.
(I needed to go to sli path, bought 1 card, and after 7 months bought another)
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October 14, 2011 2:05:02 PM

ok so in closing. Im good with the video card selected and the mother board since it has SLI? In the futuer, I can add another card if i want better performance.

Thanks again...
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 2:11:53 PM

I ran BF3 BETA at 5760x1080 3x1 Eyefinity on two 6950 2GB cards and it ran fine. Plus I imagine with better drivers and the final release wich will be optimized way better then the BETA Eyefinity will be great.

I ran Eyefinity on a single 6950 2GB card for a while in Bad Company 2, Dirt 3, and a few other games and it ran well with lower settings and less AA/AF. Adding the second card allowed me to up the settings and AA. I run BFBC2 at 5760x1080 all settings maxed and max AA/AF and rarely see below 50FPS. The only exception is the Oasis map, for whatever reason that map just doesn't run as well as the others.

TL: DR - Eyefinity is awesome and runs OK on one 6950, but I recommend getting two. And be sure to get the 2GB cards, 1Gb isn't enough.
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 2:24:49 PM

C0rehound said:
I ran BF3 BETA at 5760x1080 3x1 Eyefinity on two 6950 2GB cards and it ran fine. Plus I imagine with better drivers and the final release wich will be optimized way better then the BETA Eyefinity will be great.

I ran Eyefinity on a single 6950 2GB card for a while in Bad Company 2, Dirt 3, and a few other games and it ran well with lower settings and less AA/AF. Adding the second card allowed me to up the settings and AA. I run BFBC2 at 5760x1080 all settings maxed and max AA/AF and rarely see below 50FPS. The only exception is the Oasis map, for whatever reason that map just doesn't run as well as the others.

TL: DR - Eyefinity is awesome and runs OK on one 6950, but I recommend getting two. And be sure to get the 2GB cards, 1Gb isn't enough.


1- With 2 VGAS - U ran BF3 Beta in 5760x1080 with all options in ultra? (max)
2- Is viable to run the game in 5760x1080 with only one 6950?


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October 14, 2011 2:38:32 PM

I would rather have Eyefinity and a few options turned down then more limited FOV and all options at max. Most games these days look just fine with "gamer" or "high" settings. "Ultra" settings are nice but not everything.
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October 14, 2011 2:59:48 PM

vitornob said:
1- With 2 VGAS - U ran BF3 Beta in 5760x1080 with all options in ultra? (max)
2- Is viable to run the game in 5760x1080 with only one 6950?



he said bf2 two.......dos........ni........duex.....sfien.....II......
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 3:14:04 PM

vitornob said:
1- With 2 VGAS - U ran BF3 Beta in 5760x1080 with all options in ultra? (max)
2- Is viable to run the game in 5760x1080 with only one 6950?


The ultra settings in the beta didn't do anything so no, I had everything set to medium (which was apparetnly the max in the BETA) and 4xAA/AF.

I didn't try BF3 BETA with only one card and Eyefinity. One card ran 1920x1080 pretty well but (for the beta at least) I'd say you'll want crossfire for Eyefinity. But again, with better drivers and game optimization things could change. I took my results in the beta with a grain of salt, as I imagine they are no where near the finished product results.

To add; crossfire scaled very well in BF3, much better then Bad Copmany 2. Can't wait to see the finished product.
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a c 106 U Graphics card
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October 14, 2011 3:22:03 PM

Since you already have a 6970 just get a second one to run in crossfire. When you use eyefinity you need to run the three monitors off the first card and you need to use at least one active display port adapter. Sapphire FLEX cards have that built in to one of the DVI ports so you don't have to buy one separately.
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October 14, 2011 4:07:21 PM

badtaylorx said:
he said bf2 two.......dos........ni........duex.....sfien.....II......


U wrong

"I ran BF3 BETA at 5760x1080 3x1 Eyefinity on two 6950 2GB cards and it ran fine", I just asked if ran fine with ultra settings

BF3 three.......tres..... san.... etc etc
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a b U Graphics card
October 14, 2011 4:16:03 PM

dudeguzman said:
ok so in closing. Im good with the video card selected and the mother board since it has SLI? In the futuer, I can add another card if i want better performance.

Thanks again...


SLI is for nvidia cards. Since you have an AMD card, you want crossfire. Most SLI boards also support crossfire, i think yours does as well (didnt look into specs)
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