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One monitor on iGPU and one on HD6970

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 6, 2012 3:56:06 PM

So I was playing around a bit today with my computer and decided to try running one of my monitors off of the intergrated GPU and one off of the HD6970 to see if my gaming performace would improve...
here are my spec's

Asus P8Z68-V bios all updated to latest
Intel i5-2500K OC to 4.3GHz
Sapphire HD6970
windows 7 64bit sp1 all updated
OCZ vertex 3 SSD, +2 WD black 640GB
Antec TPQ-850


Apparently I CAN run a monitor off of the intergrated graphics and the other off of the descrete GPU and still have extended desktop and such. I think BF3 may have seen a performance boost also because I am not driving the second monitor (although I haven't really TESTED it yet). I DIDN'T install lucid VIRTU and the bios has been set to support multiple monitors in iGPU settings.

here is my question... IS the intergrated graphics ACTUALLY running the second monitor or is the HD6970 running it and just copying the frame buffer to the onboard DVI? I am going to have to do some benchmarking with a game or two, to see if my "percieved performace improvement" is ACTUALLY a performance improvement.

Also I noticed the "power slider" in catalyst disappears. Any one have any ideas on that? I do use the slider, normally set to +15%...but if it disappears when I run on iGPU and actually DO get a performance boost then no slider would be fine by me.

Also I tried re-installing the catalyst drivers today and for some reason the screen went sort of black...almost inverse color's when it was done removing old catalyst files and what not. It was displaying SOMETHING but not really legiable. Ideas? I had to boot up on the iGPU only (unhook monitor from the HD6970) to be able to see what I was doing (and to re-install catalyst).

All seems to work fine now...I am just curious if anyone has any insight on this type of thing. And does it sound "reasonable" to get a performance boost with the second (desktop only) monitor off of the descrete card and on to the iGPU.

More about : monitor igpu hd6970

a c 109 U Graphics card
January 6, 2012 4:33:01 PM

igp will not boost your performance games.
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a b U Graphics card
January 6, 2012 4:36:29 PM

So I have never played with lucid at all but here is some info on how it works.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/4199/lucids-virtu-enables...

It is supposed to send video decoding/encoding to the integrated GPU and allow the discrete gpu to handle games. So I guess as long as the igpu is handling an extended monitor that frees up what little resources the monitor was taking from the 6970. It makes sense that you would see a small improvement. I guess the only way you will know is to benchmarks some games and see. I am curious to see what your results are.
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a c 177 U Graphics card
a c 91 C Monitor
January 6, 2012 7:21:09 PM

If you have one monitor in the igpu and one in the discrete, the gpus are rendering each monitor separately and independently. Virtu is unnecessary with multiple monitors and must be running anyways to have any type of gpu virtualization. But I doubt you will see a performance boost as running the desktop takes hardly any resources. The amd drivers are known to not like to work along side any other video driver (the intel drivers in this case) which has caused some minor negligible issues as you have experienced.
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January 6, 2012 8:41:16 PM

thanks for the reply's guys. I am just re-installing dirt 2 to do some benchmarks since it has a nice benchmarking tool. I will post results soon.
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January 6, 2012 11:21:03 PM

ok so I ran a quick benchmark with BF3. Unfortunately Dirt 2 shuts off the second monitor when it is run so I didn't use it. I ran through the first session of the campaign in BF3. I started the benchmark about half way through the intro video and attemped to "play" the same through out the mission for 2 minutes. Catalyst was set to 0% on the power slider since it gets disabled/dissappears when I am using the iGPU for the secondary monitor.

I kept all settings the same throughout each...

HD6970 both monitors hooked up:
min: 47 Max: 201 Avg: 83.55

HD6970 main, iGPU secondary
min: 48 max: 201 Avg: 86.36

Apparently not much of a difference....probably my own error in playing. I'll see if I can find a better way to bench this kind of thing. I also didn't have anything running on my second monitor besides steam and skype. I am going to fire up GPU-z, CPU-z, and HWmonitor to load the second screen and see if that makes a difference.
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January 18, 2012 3:35:41 PM

Best answer selected by ru_1980.
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