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Single or dual graphics cards?

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May 24, 2012 7:13:48 PM

I am building a new Alienware Aurora PC and I don't know what the difference between a single or a dual graphics card.

Single: 1.25GB GDDR5 NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 560 Ti

DUal: 1GB GDDR5 NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 555 or Dual 1GB GDDR5 NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 555 - NVIDIA SLI® Enabled
May 24, 2012 7:34:05 PM

single = 1 card
dual = 2 cards
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May 24, 2012 7:39:41 PM

Hello,

Serious question here - why buy a pre-built?

For probably the same amount of money - you can probably get much better hardware depending on your budget.

Also - you can learn A LOT about computers by building them yourself. At least you would have this knowledge in the future - even though just starting out building your own computer can seem like a daunting task.

But, this is why this website exists - for us to help you out. We could help you out step-by step to get your own computer built.


But to answer your question if your dead set on going with a pre built, basically 2 graphics cards act like 1 - and -almost- gives double the performance of 1 card.

Even though each card is 1 GB, in SLI (Dual GPU mode) the OS will still only detect 1GB of GPU ram. This is because SLI mode copies the same information to both cards. Basically frame 1 will be by your first card, then frame 2 will be by your second card, then on the 3rd frame its back to your first card and so on. This is just a very basic run down of how dual GPU's work. It's much more complicated than that.

However there is a caveat to this - if your only running say 1920x1080 resolution - there really isn't a need to go with a dual GPU setup.

I would reccomend going with 1 bigger graphics card - like the GTX 670 (best bang for the buck at the moment).

A GTX 560TI will allow you to game out at medium/high settings depending on the game (and it's graphics settings) at 1920x1080.
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May 24, 2012 10:20:48 PM

Hello, are you 100% set on buying an alienware? If not you can build yourself a computer that is cheaper and way faster.

Building a computer is easier then it sounds, it like legos every piece has its place. I have put together a wishlist from newegg http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx... it is cheaper then the base priced aurora but is as powerful as an aurora costing $2000.

The computer in the wishlist has great value compared to the alienware, and if you ever need more power you can put another gtx 670 without any problems.
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May 24, 2012 10:26:03 PM

Chainzsaw said:
Hello,

Serious question here - why buy a pre-built?

For probably the same amount of money - you can probably get much better hardware depending on your budget.

Also - you can learn A LOT about computers by building them yourself. At least you would have this knowledge in the future - even though just starting out building your own computer can seem like a daunting task.

But, this is why this website exists - for us to help you out. We could help you out step-by step to get your own computer built.


But to answer your question if your dead set on going with a pre built, basically 2 graphics cards act like 1 - and -almost- gives double the performance of 1 card.

Even though each card is 1 GB, in SLI (Dual GPU mode) the OS will still only detect 1GB of GPU ram. This is because SLI mode copies the same information to both cards. Basically frame 1 will be by your first card, then frame 2 will be by your second card, then on the 3rd frame its back to your first card and so on. This is just a very basic run down of how dual GPU's work. It's much more complicated than that.

However there is a caveat to this - if your only running say 1920x1080 resolution - there really isn't a need to go with a dual GPU setup.

I would reccomend going with 1 bigger graphics card - like the GTX 670 (best bang for the buck at the moment).

A GTX 560TI will allow you to game out at medium/high settings depending on the game (and it's graphics settings) at 1920x1080.


Thank you for the reply, Chainzsaw! That's all I wanted to know on the dual graphics card. I would be better to stick with a single graphics card. My monitor isn't that big, so dual won't be needed. If the GTX 670 is the smartest card to get, I'll take your word on that.

I would rather not build up my own CPU but rather buy my own because I don't want to mess anything up, you know? Unless the savings are just that good and the risks aren't all that high.

I'm thinking of spending from $2000-$3000 on my desktop, if you could also help with smart choices with that budget.
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May 24, 2012 10:28:00 PM

italiasian said:
Hello, are you 100% set on buying an alienware? If not you can build yourself a computer that is cheaper and way faster.

Building a computer is easier then it sounds, it like legos every piece has its place. I have put together a wishlist from newegg http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx... it is cheaper then the base priced aurora but is as powerful as an aurora costing $2000.

The computer in the wishlist has great value compared to the alienware, and if you ever need more power you can put another gtx 670 without any problems.


I'll check the site out and see what kind of desktop I can get for $2k. I just don't know what parts I'll exactly need for the CPU.
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May 24, 2012 10:37:46 PM

even if you go to your local PC store I'm sure that they would build if for you for a small fee, and you will be getting more bang for your buck.
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June 2, 2012 7:29:13 AM

Best answer selected by Aleonris.
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