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Question about 6990+6970+6970

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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 9:38:42 AM

What I want to know is have any of you tried this configuration and what games work with quadfire? I am also curious to find out if any of you have tried crossfire 6990 and what games utilize at 4 gpus? So far the only game that I have played that where 4 gpu's run in the high 90's while playing is bf3 but it crashes constantly after a few minutes of play. 6990+6970 for trifire works perfectly in bf3. It scales great with no artifacting, microstuttering, flickering of any kind. I can use either of the 6970's with the 6990 and play for hours with no problem so it is not my system or the game. Other games like Dues ex hr, skyrim, FEAR 3, need for speed the run all max out with 2 gpu's. There must be at least one game that takes advantage of quadfire?
a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 10:46:07 AM

alrobichaud said:
What I want to know is have any of you tried this configuration and what games work with quadfire? I am also curious to find out if any of you have tried crossfire 6990 and what games utilize at 4 gpus? So far the only game that I have played that where 4 gpu's run in the high 90's while playing is bf3 but it crashes constantly after a few minutes of play. 6990+6970 for trifire works perfectly in bf3. It scales great with no artifacting, microstuttering, flickering of any kind. I can use either of the 6970's with the 6990 and play for hours with no problem so it is not my system or the game. Other games like Dues ex hr, skyrim, FEAR 3, need for speed the run all max out with 2 gpu's. There must be at least one game that takes advantage of quadfire?



The game just crashes? Single player and on-line?
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 11:09:27 AM

Ok wait, let me get this straight, you took a 6990 (dual gpu 6970x2) and a single 6970 and crossfire them? wow sounds ultimate. But to answer your question, i mean yea you see people with quad crossfire/SLI and may not even be using but the first two and only coming close to the 3rd one in use. I use 2 way SLI and with EVGA precision i was able to determine that both the cards are at about 50/50 in usage. Now if you got the money and wanna blow it, uh sure. but 3 way is plenty enough especially for those cards
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Related resources
February 21, 2012 11:21:12 AM

alrobichaud said:
What I want to know is have any of you tried this configuration and what games work with quadfire? I am also curious to find out if any of you have tried crossfire 6990 and what games utilize at 4 gpus? So far the only game that I have played that where 4 gpu's run in the high 90's while playing is bf3 but it crashes constantly after a few minutes of play. 6990+6970 for trifire works perfectly in bf3. It scales great with no artifacting, microstuttering, flickering of any kind. I can use either of the 6970's with the 6990 and play for hours with no problem so it is not my system or the game. Other games like Dues ex hr, skyrim, FEAR 3, need for speed the run all max out with 2 gpu's. There must be at least one game that takes advantage of quadfire?

I would guess either you have original window7 which is no longer supported by many games or power issues. Original windows 7 can cause kernal traps with some games. If your 1200w PSU if old it may have lost much of its power output.

I found a review which states some good info on your PSU. Try to get all 3 rails in play and the 6990 on one of the 36amp rails by itself.
http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...

I know for sure 3 gpu's should up your FPS.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 11:31:28 AM

Rockdpm said:
Ok wait, let me get this straight, you took a 6990 (dual gpu 6970x2) and a single 6970 and crossfire them? wow sounds ultimate. But to answer your question, i mean yea you see people with quad crossfire/SLI and may not even be using but the first two and only coming close to the 3rd one in use. I use 2 way SLI and with EVGA precision i was able to determine that both the cards are at about 50/50 in usage. Now if you got the money and wanna blow it, uh sure. but 3 way is plenty enough especially for those cards


Did you stop and think for even a second that he plays at a res. of 5760x1080? You think 560ti in sli will max BF3 out? The short answer is no. This is why he has the setup he has... 2 6970's are cheaper than a 6990 so it makes sense to me. He has the x16 slots and I don't thus the reason for 6990 CFX.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 12:16:11 PM

It's my first time i hear such a strange configuration but technically it will work without any problem if you OC the HD 6970s to the same clocks of the HD 6990 or vice versa.

The third GPU in CFX doesn't add much value and the fourth card is pretty useless IMO, the scale goes very well with 2 GPUs in SLI/CF.

You didn't mention what resolution you are playing at, and actually all the games you listed run perfectly at max with a single HD 6970.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 12:29:27 PM

Quote:
You didn't mention what resolution you are playing at


It's in his configuration and can see his avatar. No biggie though...
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 1:01:44 PM

I guess I could have left more details in regards to bf3. I am playing 6018x1080 in ultra with 4xMSAA at stock 6990 speeds. With those settings at that resolution it takes at least a 6990+6970 to maintain 60fps on the most action packed levels. All 3 gpu's( a 6990 is essentially crossfire 6970 on the same board) run at or above 95% when running in trifire playing bf3 and I can play for hours with no trouble at all. Here is exaclty what happens when I enable the second 6970. If I play on a level like Caspian Border and fly around in a jet I hit over 130fps and can fly around killing people for hours without any problem. If I try to play the Operation Metro level with 63 other guys and tons of mayhem where my gpu's are working hard my fps is around 80 and that is when the game will freeze anywhere from 1 to 5 minutes of playing. I have to ctrl+alt+del to get out of the game. That is usually followed by one of two errors. Either 'Battlfeild 3 has stopped responding' or 'Windows has recovered from a display driver error'. I can play single player online and If the action on the screen gets too intense the game will freeze but for the most part it is ok. I have played many many hours of bf3 with 6990+6970 and I never have any issues other than the odd random disconnect from ea online which happens to everyone. I have read on other forums where guys are complaining that with crossfire 6990 they have to disable one to play bf3 due to constant crashing. What I am trying to determine is if this is what is happening to me. I have run many passes of heaven 2.5 at 5760x1080 with 6990+6970+6970 and other than some minor artifacting each run runs smoothly. I have also tried msi kombuster and it runs in quadfire with some minor artifacting but it does not crash. I realize my psu is not top quality but it maintains 79% effeciency at 1190W. AMD recommends a 1000W to crossfire 6990's. 6990 = 350W 2x6970 = 500W CPU = 130 W. Once you add the remaining fans and hydro cooler I should not be running much more than 1000W. I would really like to know if any of you who are running quadfire know of a game that will utilize 4 gpu's so I can use that as a test.
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a c 191 U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 1:06:09 PM



Thought this might help the discussion a bit.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 1:06:11 PM

I have also considered that it may be one of the crossfire cables but i will need to order another on ebay before I can rule that out. Another thought that I had was maybe it is to do with the difference in gpu and memory clock speeds. I have to admit that I did not try to run the 6990 at 880/1375 to match the 6970 since everything that I have read says that the 6970's will default to the slower speed of the 6990 which is 830/1200.

BTW, i have run 4 hours of memtest86 and 8 hours of prime 95 with 0 errors.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 1:12:28 PM

Ideally, I would like to hear from someone who has either my setup or crossfire 6990 and who has run bf3, heaven 2.5 to see if we are expereincing the same problem. That would make it easier to determine if the problem is possibly the psu or crossfire cable.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 1:53:00 PM

alrobichaud said:
Ideally, I would like to hear from someone who has either my setup or crossfire 6990 and who has run bf3, heaven 2.5 to see if we are expereincing the same problem. That would make it easier to determine if the problem is possibly the psu or crossfire cable.

Dirt 3 and Shogun 2 come to mind... although BF3 works great for me as well as Unigine Heaven, Tropics and Sanctuary.

Both 6990's in AUSUM mode 880/1350... was 880/1375 but my 2nd 6990 doesn't like the 1375 mem clock and was giving me minor artifacts in some games so dropped the clock and all is well. Go into Catalyst and manually set the gpu/mem clocks to match... don't rely on the drivers to do it for you.

It's true some games don't scale very well in quadfire but they shouldn't crash.
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February 21, 2012 2:13:17 PM

I wasn't try to say your 1200w isn't enough but aged it could be border line. This is a bench test open with no extra case fans and only 1 HD. The CPU is an i7 965 with a eVGA X58 Classified and 1200W PSU.

Quote:
measured power consumption two x Radeon HD 6990 (CrossfireX + unlocked mode)

System in IDLE = 244W
System Wattage with GPU in FULL Stress = 902W

http://www.guru3d.com/article/his-radeon-hd-6990-crossf...

The 489W for one 6990 is more amps that either of your top 2 12v rails will take solo.
Quote:
Measured power consumption Radeon HD 6990 (default mode)

System in IDLE = 195W
System Wattage with GPU in FULL Stress = 489W

If you have no problems with only 3 GPU's or can under clock all 4 GPU's with no problems you most likely have a power problem. Try under clocking your GPU's a bit. You mostly have pointed out full stress draw is when your crashing so this is the first tests you should try.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 2:45:34 PM

elbert said:
I wasn't try to say your 1200w isn't enough but aged it could be border line. This is a bench test open with no extra case fans and only 1 HD. The CPU is an i7 965 with a eVGA X58 Classified and 1200W PSU.

Quote:
measured power consumption two x Radeon HD 6990 (CrossfireX + unlocked mode)

System in IDLE = 244W
System Wattage with GPU in FULL Stress = 902W

http://www.guru3d.com/article/his-radeon-hd-6990-crossf...

The 489W for one 6990 is more amps that either of your top 2 12v rails will take solo.
Quote:
Measured power consumption Radeon HD 6990 (default mode)

System in IDLE = 195W
System Wattage with GPU in FULL Stress = 489W

If you have no problems with only 3 GPU's or can under clock all 4 GPU's with no problems you most likely have a power problem. Try under clocking your GPU's a bit. You mostly have pointed out full stress draw is when your crashing so this is the first tests you should try.



#'s aren't right...

2 8-pins and PCIe --> 150+150+75= 375w

Physically impossible to draw 489w... I can run SiSoftware Sandra system bench and it tells me the 6990's draw 1500w... is this right? No. I have a HX1050 and run:

2600K 4.5ghz
16Gb RAM
H100
2x 6990's
blu-ray
DVD
510 series SSD
1TB barricuda
500GB barricuda
4x 200mm fans
140mm fan
2x 120mm fans
2x 40mm fans
All of my USB peripherals (2.0 & 3.0)

All of this runs without a problem... his problem probably lies in the clocks or one of the GPU's are weak. Artifacts are an indicator... I'd drop the clocks to 850/1300 for all and go from there...
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 2:47:29 PM

elbert said:
I wasn't try to say your 1200w isn't enough but aged it could be border line. This is a bench test open with no extra case fans and only 1 HD. The CPU is an i7 965 with a eVGA X58 Classified and 1200W PSU.

Quote:
measured power consumption two x Radeon HD 6990 (CrossfireX + unlocked mode)

System in IDLE = 244W
System Wattage with GPU in FULL Stress = 902W

http://www.guru3d.com/article/his-radeon-hd-6990-crossf...

The 489W for one 6990 is more amps that either of your top 2 12v rails will take solo.
Quote:
Measured power consumption Radeon HD 6990 (default mode)

System in IDLE = 195W
System Wattage with GPU in FULL Stress = 489W

If you have no problems with only 3 GPU's or can under clock all 4 GPU's with no problems you most likely have a power problem. Try under clocking your GPU's a bit. You mostly have point out full stress draw is when your crashing so this is the first tests you should try.



The thought had crossed my mind about the power issue. Using BIOS 1 the 6990 runs at 830/1250 and draws 350W according to AMD. In BIOS 2 it runs at a higher gpu and mem clock to match the 6970 speeds and draws 450W. I currently have two separate 12V pci-e power cables plugged into the 6990 and my motherboard also has two molex connections that add further power to the PCI-e slots which i have connected to the psu also. That should be plenty of power in BIOS 2 and I am only using BIOS 1. I thought that maybe the psu was fine since heaven 2.5 and msi kombuster do not cause a video crash. russwood1488, are you saying that dirt3 uses all 4 of your gpu's with your crossfire 6990's? If so, I will try dirt3 and see if it runs smoothly for me in quadfire. I will definately try using CCC to match the gpu and mem speeds of each card to see if that helps.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 2:53:25 PM

alrobichaud said:
The thought had crossed my mind about the power issue. Using BIOS 1 the 6990 runs at 830/1250 and draws 350W according to AMD. In BIOS 2 it runs at a higher gpu and mem clock to match the 6970 speeds and draws 450W. I currently have two separate 12V pci-e power cables plugged into the 6990 and my motherboard also has two molex connections that add further power to the PCI-e slots which i have connected to the psu also. That should be plenty of power in BIOS 2 and I am only using BIOS 1. I thought that maybe the psu was fine since heaven 2.5 and msi kombuster do not cause a video crash. russwood1488, are you saying that dirt3 uses all 4 of your gpu's with your crossfire 6990's? If so, I will try dirt3 and see if it runs smoothly for me in quadfire. I will definately try using CCC to match the gpu and mem speeds of each card to see if that helps.


Yes Dirt 3... 3 gpus 99% scaling and the fourth fluctuates between 80-90%. I'll take a screenshot if need be.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 2:53:48 PM

I also think the artifacts are part of the problem. The unfortunate thing with my setup is that I can't turn down the memory clock in CCC on either of the 6970's. It will only let me lower the gpu clock. When I get home I will give it another try matching all of the settings in CCC.
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February 21, 2012 2:54:40 PM

RussK1 said:
#'s aren't right...

2 8-pins and PCIe --> 150+150+75= 375w

Physically impossible to draw 489w... I can run SiSoftware Sandra system bench and it tells me the 6990's draw 1500w... is this right? No. I have a HX1050 and run:

2600K 4.5ghz
16Gb RAM
H100
2x 6990's
blu-ray
DVD
510 series SSD
1TB barricuda
500GB barricuda
4x 200mm fans
140mm fan
2x 120mm fans
2x 40mm fans
All of my USB periferals (2.0 & 3.0)

All of this runs without a problem... his problem probably lies in the clocks or one of the GPU's are weak. Artifacts are an indicator... I'd drop the clocks to 850/1300 for all and go from there...

The numbers are correct for FurMark but on the high side as no game would cause this much draw. None I know of for sure. Sandra pushes the cards a bit more normal for games I would agree.

Yes I agree it could be a weak GPU and lowering the clock rate is the best ideal.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 3:00:38 PM

RussK1 said:
Yes Dirt 3... 3 gpus 99% scaling and the fourth fluctuates between 80-90%. I'll take a screenshot if need be.



No need for a screen shot :) . So I had to RMA's one of my 6970's and just got a replacement yesterday. I had been thinking for the last month that my problem had been the one card I sent back and assumed when I reinstalled it all would be well. Sigh! it wasn't :( . I RMA'd the card because I foolishly removed it without grounding myself first and since my house is quite dry and it is the middle of the winter here, I ended up getting a shock when I touched the back of the card(shhh don't tell xfx). Anyway, back to square one. With my remaining 6990 and 6970 I have not seen any artifacting at all and they replaced my faulty card with brand new one.
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February 21, 2012 3:11:20 PM

alrobichaud said:
The thought had crossed my mind about the power issue. Using BIOS 1 the 6990 runs at 830/1250 and draws 350W according to AMD. In BIOS 2 it runs at a higher gpu and mem clock to match the 6970 speeds and draws 450W. I currently have two separate 12V pci-e power cables plugged into the 6990 and my motherboard also has two molex connections that add further power to the PCI-e slots which i have connected to the psu also. That should be plenty of power in BIOS 2 and I am only using BIOS 1. I thought that maybe the psu was fine since heaven 2.5 and msi kombuster do not cause a video crash. russwood1488, are you saying that dirt3 uses all 4 of your gpu's with your crossfire 6990's? If so, I will try dirt3 and see if it runs smoothly for me in quadfire. I will definately try using CCC to match the gpu and mem speeds of each card to see if that helps.

Which 12v rail is each card on? Your power supply is really 2x 600w. 12v1(20amp) and 12v4(36amp) both have 600w with 12v2(20amp) and 12v3(36amp) the other 600w. The 12v1 and 12v4 side shares power with 3.3v power. The 12v2 and 12v3 side shares with 5v power. If its a power issue swapping around the PCIe power plugs could fix the problem.
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 3:21:01 PM

elbert said:
Which 12v rail is each card on? Your power supply is really 2x 600w. 12v1(20amp) and 12v4(36amp) both have 600w with 12v2(20amp) and 12v3(36amp) the other 600w. The 12v1 and 12v4 side shares power with 3.3v power. The 12v2 and 12v3 side shares with 5v power. If its a power issue swapping around the PCIe power plugs could fix the problem.


That's a good point... Thus why I only use single rail psu's. It's a hassle managing which rail goes where-
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 4:05:08 PM

I will check which rail is connected to which card when i get home from work. Any thoughts on what configuration would work best for me?
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a b U Graphics card
February 21, 2012 4:09:05 PM

BTW, I only bought that psu out of nescessity as the local computer store only had that model in stock and the next closest psu was 1000W which I thought may have been cutting it too close. Live and learn I guess. Single rails from now on. The one big difference I can see from that review as compared to my psu is that mine is not color coded. Both ends of the pci-e cables are black and all the connections on the psu are black. It is possible that I have the 6990 on one side and the 6970 on the other and when I power up the seccond 6970 it may be on the 6990's side. Definately a good tip even if this is not my problem.
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February 22, 2012 4:06:46 AM

alrobichaud said:
I will check which rail is connected to which card when i get home from work. Any thoughts on what configuration would work best for me?

I would suggest one and a half 6970's on the 12v4 rail and the 6990 with the other half on 12v2/12v3 rails. For the half try the 8 pin plug on the 12v4 rail and the 6 pin on the 12v2/12v3 rail. The 36 amp rail should be enough for 1 and half GPU's. That is about the best ideal I have for balancing the load.
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February 22, 2012 5:33:16 AM

ilysaml said:
It's my first time i hear such a strange configuration but technically it will work without any problem if you OC the HD 6970s to the same clocks of the HD 6990 or vice versa.

The third GPU in CFX doesn't add much value and the fourth card is pretty useless IMO, the scale goes very well with 2 GPUs in SLI/CF.

You didn't mention what resolution you are playing at, and actually all the games you listed run perfectly at max with a single HD 6970.


Hell a single 6790 can run BF3 at max on a lower resolution...

This guy has the power to make his own CGI movies.
Ive worked on a Comp with this kind of setup once and it WAS for CGI. I'd be surprised if BF3 couldn't run this even in a very high resolution as yours unless its not compatible of corse.
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a b U Graphics card
February 22, 2012 8:53:40 AM

Xerxcuss said:
Hell a single 6790 can run BF3 at max on a lower resolution...

This guy has the power to make his own CGI movies.
Ive worked on a Comp with this kind of setup once and it WAS for CGI. I'd be surprised if BF3 couldn't run this even in a very high resolution as yours unless its not compatible of corse.



Well, bf3 is a massive resource pig and in order to play it at a resolution of 6018x1080(bezel comp) in ultra settings you need massive gpu power. I think people are suprised to hear that a 6990+6970 is just enough to get 60fps with those settings. The second 6970 gives you a bit of breathing room.
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a b U Graphics card
February 22, 2012 9:40:10 AM

So here is where I stand now. I double checked the power and the 6990 is on one 36A rail and the two 6970's share the other 36A rail. I used CCC to match the settings of each gpu instead of letting the software do it and I ran a few passes of heaven 2.5 and the artifacts are now gone. I also played about 45minutes of dirt 3 at 6018x1080 in ultra settings with an average fps of 79.88. All 4 gpu's were running at roughly 90%. The game ran very smoothly and looked very cool! I still cannot play BF3 with 4 gpu's enabled. I made 4 attempts in 10 minutes and each time I was able to play for 30seconds up to 2 minutes. This is very frustrating but at least I know I can play a game such as dirt 3 with 4 gpu's so the problem must be something to do with bf3. I also am not too happy with the temps I am running. russwood1488, did you notice how hot your gpu's are running while under full load? My 6990 hit a max of 95 degrees while playing dirt 3. This is probably due to having 3 cards side by side. I did use some small rubber spacers to allow for more airflow and I do have 4 120mm side mount fans blowing down on my motherboard.
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a b U Graphics card
February 22, 2012 11:39:05 AM

alrobichaud said:
So here is where I stand now. I double checked the power and the 6990 is on one 36A rail and the two 6970's share the other 36A rail. I used CCC to match the settings of each gpu instead of letting the software do it and I ran a few passes of heaven 2.5 and the artifacts are now gone. I also played about 45minutes of dirt 3 at 6018x1080 in ultra settings with an average fps of 79.88. All 4 gpu's were running at roughly 90%. The game ran very smoothly and looked very cool! I still cannot play BF3 with 4 gpu's enabled. I made 4 attempts in 10 minutes and each time I was able to play for 30seconds up to 2 minutes. This is very frustrating but at least I know I can play a game such as dirt 3 with 4 gpu's so the problem must be something to do with bf3. I also am not too happy with the temps I am running. russwood1488, did you notice how hot your gpu's are running while under full load? My 6990 hit a max of 95 degrees while playing dirt 3. This is probably due to having 3 cards side by side. I did use some small rubber spacers to allow for more airflow and I do have 4 120mm side mount fans blowing down on my motherboard.



Here's my setup, I set a custom profile with Afterburner and the cards don't get above 75c after hours of extreme gaming.

How close are your cards? 95c is getting up there and it would bother me as well...



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a b U Graphics card
February 22, 2012 12:19:06 PM

My cable managament is not as neet as yours. The top mount psu won't allow me to hide the pci-e power cables since they are a bit too short. Without using any custom profile, I would hit a max of 85 degrees. I had previously tried msi afterburner to create a custom profile but I did not like how often the fans had to ramp up to maintain 80 degrees which is where I had it set to. I was ok with a max temp of 85 which is what you get with CCC default settings. My setup with two cards is similar to yours with a full double slot space in between and lot's of airflow. Is your spacing a single slot? With my motherboard, It will only allow 3 cards to be installed in slots 1,2 and 3. I tried slots 1,3,4 but the card in slot 4 was not recognized. According to ASUS, slot 4 will only work if the previous 3 slots are occupied. With 3 cards installed, the spacing is about 1/8 of an inch between the cards so I used some rubber spacers to increase that to about 1/4 of an inch. I think the problem is that the back of each gpu is very hot to the touch so the blower of the card sitting on top of it sucks the warm air in to cool itself which probably accounts for the increase in temp. I also noticed that with two cards installed, while playing Skyrim, the temp on the 6990 hit a max of 83 degrees and with 3 cards installed It was running at 90 degrees even though the other two cards were dormant. I am not entirely certain I want my cards running in the mid 90's and I don't think I want to have the fans constantly running over 50% to keep the temps lower. Ideally, I should get rid of the two 6970's and get another 6990. This will allow for better spacing and more reasonable temps. I think I will go back to using the 6990+6970 for now since I can still max every game in eyefintiy resolutions and everything works perfectly. I think I will put my 6970's up for sale and once they both go I will source out another 6990.

Thanks for all the help.
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a b U Graphics card
February 22, 2012 12:42:07 PM

alrobichaud said:
My cable managament is not as neet as yours. The top mount psu won't allow me to hide the pci-e power cables since they are a bit too short. Without using any custom profile, I would hit a max of 85 degrees. I had previously tried msi afterburner to create a custom profile but I did not like how often the fans had to ramp up to maintain 80 degrees which is where I had it set to. I was ok with a max temp of 85 which is what you get with CCC default settings. My setup with two cards is similar to yours with a full double slot space in between and lot's of airflow. Is your spacing a single slot? With my motherboard, It will only allow 3 cards to be installed in slots 1,2 and 3. I tried slots 1,3,4 but the card in slot 4 was not recognized. According to ASUS, slot 4 will only work if the previous 3 slots are occupied. With 3 cards installed, the spacing is about 1/8 of an inch between the cards so I used some rubber spacers to increase that to about 1/4 of an inch. I think the problem is that the back of each gpu is very hot to the touch so the blower of the card sitting on top of it sucks the warm air in to cool itself which probably accounts for the increase in temp. I also noticed that with two cards installed, while playing Skyrim, the temp on the 6990 hit a max of 83 degrees and with 3 cards installed It was running at 90 degrees even though the other two cards were dormant. I am not entirely certain I want my cards running in the mid 90's and I don't think I want to have the fans constantly running over 50% to keep the temps lower. Ideally, I should get rid of the two 6970's and get another 6990. This will allow for better spacing and more reasonable temps. I think I will go back to using the 6990+6970 for now since I can still max every game in eyefintiy resolutions and everything works perfectly. I think I will put my 6970's up for sale and once they both go I will source out another 6990.

Thanks for all the help.


the X16 are triple so a 6990 is double high therefore leaves single slot in-between each gpu which is good. The HafX has a 200mm fan w/shroud blowing directly on the cards so they get extra air.

You have the right idea... sell the 6970's and get another 6990 and the air problem is solved, also managing the the rails. Put a 6990 on each rail and forget about it and total power draw will be lower.

6990's are getting hard to find and when you find them they are expensive ($800-$1,000)... try looking at Amazon Warehouse Deals.

Good luck!
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February 22, 2012 1:34:38 PM

alrobichaud said:
So here is where I stand now. I double checked the power and the 6990 is on one 36A rail and the two 6970's share the other 36A rail. I used CCC to match the settings of each gpu instead of letting the software do it and I ran a few passes of heaven 2.5 and the artifacts are now gone. I also played about 45minutes of dirt 3 at 6018x1080 in ultra settings with an average fps of 79.88. All 4 gpu's were running at roughly 90%. The game ran very smoothly and looked very cool! I still cannot play BF3 with 4 gpu's enabled. I made 4 attempts in 10 minutes and each time I was able to play for 30seconds up to 2 minutes. This is very frustrating but at least I know I can play a game such as dirt 3 with 4 gpu's so the problem must be something to do with bf3. I also am not too happy with the temps I am running. russwood1488, did you notice how hot your gpu's are running while under full load? My 6990 hit a max of 95 degrees while playing dirt 3. This is probably due to having 3 cards side by side. I did use some small rubber spacers to allow for more airflow and I do have 4 120mm side mount fans blowing down on my motherboard.

So basically you have 2 6970 level GPU's, CPU, motherboard, and RAM working off 600watts. Given that AMD recommends a 650w for 6800's crossfire this could be a problem. Try to find which is on 12v4 rail and move one 8 pin power plug over to the 12v2/12v3 side and see if that helps. Currently you have 2 GPU's and drives with 600w which is way more power than they can use. If you are unsure which is which the 5v molex is on the 12v2/12v3 side so use a molex to PCIE power connector if one came with your cards. Below is picture of your PSU's molex connector with the red line being 5v, yellow 12v, and the other 2 grounds. The PCIE 8 pin to molex may require 2 molex connectors.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also try lowering all 4 gpu's clock rates well below stock to make sure its not the game programing or a driver/bios issue. If this is a power or GPU only issue the game should start working when less power is need.
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February 22, 2012 3:36:08 PM

elbert said:
So basically you have 2 6970 level GPU's, CPU, motherboard, and RAM working off 600watts. Given that AMD recommends a 650w for 6800's crossfire this could be a problem. Try to find which is on 12v4 rail and move one 8 pin power plug over to the 12v2/12v3 side and see if that helps. Currently you have 2 GPU's and drives with 600w which is way more power than they can use. If you are unsure which is which the 5v molex is on the 12v2/12v3 side so use a molex to PCIE power connector if one came with your cards. Below is picture of your PSU's molex connector with the red line being 5v, yellow 12v, and the other 2 grounds. The PCIE 8 pin to molex may require 2 molex connectors.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/3/31/Molex_female_connector.jpg/250px-Molex_female_connector.jpghttp://images10.newegg.com/ProductImageCompressAll300/12-400-034-02.jpg
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also try lowering all 4 gpu's clock rates well below stock to make sure its not the game programing or a driver/bios issue. If this is a power or GPU only issue the game should start working when less power is need.



I will try lowering the gpu clock as low as I can and let you know. I will also try to move one of the 8 pin connectors to the side that does not have the cpu,motherboard,ram etc plugged in. So you are thinking that I should try to run 2x6970 and half of the 6990 off of the side of the psu that does not power the cpu and other components and then let the other side power the other half as well as the rest of the components? I am still going to move ahead with my plan to get rid of the 6970's but I would like to solve this problem since it has been such a headache for me. Any idea what the warranty policy is for AMD? I am looking at an AMD brand radeon hd 6990 that is for sale that was an rma replacement but if they are anything like powercolor or sapphire the warranty is not transferable and requires the original invoce. XFX goes by the serial number and how many times the card was registered which is a plus if you buy used.
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February 23, 2012 9:13:11 AM

I ran all 4 gpu's at 650Mhz. None exceed 70% usage and the core temp of the hottest only hit 50degrees. After I started the game, I answered the phone and let the game sit idle for about 5 minutes and upon returning I started to play and the same thing happened again. It has to be an issue with bf3 and this particular setup. Just for grins, I started playing the single player campaign again and I was able to play for about 30 minutes. It only appears to freeze during multiplayer when the gpu's are working hard. I am currently using CCC 12.2 preview and it has done it with the last two CCC drivers that I have used. I have done a complete uninstall and reinstall of bf3 and I have even contacted EA games twice and had them walk me through modifying files in the game with no luck. As I mentioned earlier dirt3 works just fine with all 4 gpu's running over 90% so I think I can rule out drivers,power,faulty gpu's or any other system problem.
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February 23, 2012 10:49:29 AM

alrobichaud said:
I ran all 4 gpu's at 650Mhz. None exceed 70% usage and the core temp of the hottest only hit 50degrees. After I started the game, I answered the phone and let the game sit idle for about 5 minutes and upon returning I started to play and the same thing happened again. It has to be an issue with bf3 and this particular setup. Just for grins, I started playing the single player campaign again and I was able to play for about 30 minutes. It only appears to freeze during multiplayer when the gpu's are working hard. I am currently using CCC 12.2 preview and it has done it with the last two CCC drivers that I have used. I have done a complete uninstall and reinstall of bf3 and I have even contacted EA games twice and had them walk me through modifying files in the game with no luck. As I mentioned earlier dirt3 works just fine with all 4 gpu's running over 90% so I think I can rule out drivers,power,faulty gpu's or any other system problem.



For testing purposes, go into your bios and disable hyper-threading and play BF3 to see how it plays... it might surprise you.
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February 27, 2012 8:11:32 PM

RussK1 said:
For testing purposes, go into your bios and disable hyper-threading and play BF3 to see how it plays... it might surprise you.



I Disabled hyperthreading and the game still froze. I removed both 6970's and I did notice that as soon as I started any game, my computer would immediately crash. That was with the entire load on one side of the PSU. Having two 600W PSU's in one is certainly problematic. Probably due to some type of load mismatch. Moved the 6990 to the other side and all is good. This is not the same problem I had with BF3. russwood1488, you weren't kidding about the price of another 6990. Amazon was the only place I could find with some in stock and they are going for $899. I found an MSI 6990 on ebay for $600 with an accerlo twin turbo cooler installed. From what I can tell MSI warranty is based on the serial number and goes by the date the unit was shipped to the store if you don't have the receipt so it won't be a huge risk in buying used. I will let you know what happens when I get the 6990. Hopefully in a few days.
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February 27, 2012 8:32:06 PM

alrobichaud said:
I Disabled hyperthreading and the game still froze. I removed both 6970's and I did notice that as soon as I started any game, my computer would immediately crash. That was with the entire load on one side of the PSU. Having two 600W PSU's in one is certainly problematic. Probably due to some type of load mismatch. Moved the 6990 to the other side and all is good. This is not the same problem I had with BF3. russwood1488, you weren't kidding about the price of another 6990. Amazon was the only place I could find with some in stock and they are going for $899. I found an MSI 6990 on ebay for $600 with an accerlo twin turbo cooler installed. From what I can tell MSI warranty is based on the serial number and goes by the date the unit was shipped to the store if you don't have the receipt so it won't be a huge risk in buying used. I will let you know what happens when I get the 6990. Hopefully in a few days.



Definitely do that... nothing like 2 6990's! Told ya they were spendy... I'm skeptical of ebay but hopefully you get a good card. I don't know about the warranty being the original heatsink has been taken off - also, I only know of two companies that will honor the warranty with the card in AUSUM mode and that's Sapphire and XFX.

Anywho, let me know how it goes... and we can compare benchmarks. [:russwood1488:8]
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February 27, 2012 10:05:25 PM

With all the costs in video cards, I couldn't help but think that 2 7970's would give you the same performance if not more with far less hassle.
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February 28, 2012 9:36:12 AM

RussK1 said:
Definitely do that... nothing like 2 6990's! Told ya they were spendy... I'm skeptical of ebay but hopefully you get a good card. I don't know about the warranty being the original heatsink has been taken off - also, I only know of two companies that will honor the warranty with the card in AUSUM mode and that's Sapphire and XFX.

Anywho, let me know how it goes... and we can compare benchmarks. [:russwood1488:8]



I am skeptical of ebay also. There is no way I was going to spend $899 plus tax on a new 6990. I did do a bit of research into which companies have the best warranty and from what I have read MSI warranties all graphics cards manufactured after Jan 2010 for 3 years. As with other companies such as PowerColor who specifically state if you remove the sticker covering the BIOS switch the warranty will be void, there is no mention of this anywhere on MSI's site. I also copied and pasted this from the warranty info section

" The product MUST be returned to MSI in the original factory configuration and condition. All aftermarket modifications must be reversed prior to sending in the product for repair or replacement."

Lastly, they do include a date code on the serial number sticker and the original invoice is not required to RMA. The seller on EBAY is including all of the original packaging for the 6990 as well as the aftermarket cooler. He is also including the original heatsink as well as all cables and documentation that came with the 6990. I figured there is a bit of risk so if it was any company other than XFX or MSI I would not have bothered. They are the only two that I know of who RMA based on serial numbers so used cards are covered.

I am curious about the acceloro twin turbo cooler. From what I have read it will run the card 15-20 degrees cooler and is nearly silent under full load. I will let you know how it works out.
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February 28, 2012 9:46:21 AM

bystander said:
With all the costs in video cards, I couldn't help but think that 2 7970's would give you the same performance if not more with far less hassle.



The thought had crossed my mind. Though I doubt I would get the same performance. Even the review on Tom's has the 6990 beating out the 7970 by as much as 25% in some cases. Thanks for the input :) 
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February 28, 2012 10:53:50 AM

alrobichaud said:
The thought had crossed my mind. Though I doubt I would get the same performance. Even the review on Tom's has the 6990 beating out the 7970 by as much as 25% in some cases. Thanks for the input :) 


I got offered a good amount of money for my machine yesterday which is really enticing... thinking about it it seems really nice being I'd be able to go X79 3930K... obviously I'd also get 2x 7970... then an epiphany hit me - I'd actually lose performance. Sure, a quad channel six core CPU would be great but I run 5760x1080. The truth of the matter, I wouldn't get the same gaming performance with 7970 CF vs 6990 CF.

Edit: just went on AMD's site to check for newer drivers and they still have the 6990 advertised as the world's fastest card.
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February 28, 2012 11:22:58 AM

RussK1 said:
I got offered a good amount of money for my machine yesterday which is really enticing... thinking about it it seems really nice being I'd be able to go X79 3930K... obviously I'd also get 2x 7970... then an epiphany hit me - I'd actually lose performance. Sure, a quad channel six core CPU would be great but I run 5760x1080. The truth of the matter, I wouldn't get the same gaming performance with 7970 CF vs 6990 CF.

Edit: just went on AMD's site to check for newer drivers and they still have the 6990 advertised as the world's fastest card.


My point exaclty. At eyefinity resolutions with max settings any little bit helps and the loss in fps switching to CF 7970 is not worth it IMO.
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February 28, 2012 11:29:11 AM

alrobichaud said:
My point exaclty. At eyefinity resolutions with max settings any little bit helps and the loss in fps switching to CF 7970 is not worth it IMO.


I even went through Newegg and put a system together and was going to tell the guy come get the machine... then I asked myself, "really Russ"? Went back to Newegg and deleted my cart. 6990's are hard to come by so one has to entirely certain they want to get rid of them. The area I see benefit in a 7970 is the tesselation... but if that was a factor I would have went to nVidia a long time ago.

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/508?vs=515
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February 28, 2012 2:28:06 PM

alrobichaud said:
The thought had crossed my mind. Though I doubt I would get the same performance. Even the review on Tom's has the 6990 beating out the 7970 by as much as 25% in some cases. Thanks for the input :) 


While a single 7970 may be 25% slower in some cases, you can't ignore that in crossfire, the 7970 would be getting 80% scaling on average, while adding two 6970's to a 6990 is getting far less out of each one. Not only that, you wouldn't have so few games that supported it.

I'm not sure your quadfire setup would be faster.

Here is a benchmark that compares 7970's in crossfire to several other setups, including 590's in SLI and 6990's in Crossfire.
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-7970-crossfire-...
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-7970-crossfire-...
(unfortunately, many of their benchmarks didn't include 6990's or 590's in cf/sli. I wonder if they just didn't work well in some games).

In some games the 7970 crossfire wins in some games it doesn't, but it's always close, but it's always close and this is with stock settings, the 7970 overclocks a lot better.
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February 28, 2012 10:25:40 PM

bystander said:
While a single 7970 may be 25% slower in some cases, you can't ignore that in crossfire, the 7970 would be getting 80% scaling on average, while adding two 6970's to a 6990 is getting far less out of each one. Not only that, you wouldn't have so few games that supported it.

I'm not sure your quadfire setup would be faster.

Here is a benchmark that compares 7970's in crossfire to several other setups, including 590's in SLI and 6990's in Crossfire.
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-7970-crossfire-...
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-7970-crossfire-...
(unfortunately, many of their benchmarks didn't include 6990's or 590's in cf/sli. I wonder if they just didn't work well in some games).

In some games the 7970 crossfire wins in some games it doesn't, but it's always close, but it's always close and this is with stock settings, the 7970 overclocks a lot better.



Those are bad examples. It would be nice to see a review that uses games like bf3 or dirt3 that use 95% of all 4 gpu's and it would be nice to see those reviews in eyefinity resolutions. It's true, there are a lot of games like Skyrim, Need for speed the run, Deus Ex HR that will only use two gpu's and in those examples CF 7970's will dominate.
A single 6990 will also play those in ultra in eyefinity so CF 7970 might be overkill. In games where it counts, like bf3 in eyefinity, Cf 6990 will give higher fps than CF 7970's. I agree with you but only partially.
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February 28, 2012 11:07:24 PM

alrobichaud said:
Those are bad examples. It would be nice to see a review that uses games like bf3 or dirt3 that use 95% of all 4 gpu's and it would be nice to see those reviews in eyefinity resolutions. It's true, there are a lot of games like Skyrim, Need for speed the run, Deus Ex HR that will only use two gpu's and in those examples CF 7970's will dominate.
A single 6990 will also play those in ultra in eyefinity so CF 7970 might be overkill. In games where it counts, like bf3 in eyefinity, Cf 6990 will give higher fps than CF 7970's. I agree with you but only partially.


I'm not as certain as you are, especially if OCing is taken into account as well as the fact that the 7900 cards have a lot more tessellation units for Dx11 stuff.
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March 2, 2012 3:25:18 AM

On your battlefield 3 freezes and crashes could punkbuster be causing this? Seems punkbuster may not like overclocking GPU utilitys such as MSI Afterburner, SAPPHIRE TRIXX, GPU-Z, ASUS iTracker, and ASUS SmartDoctor. Seems these utilitys access protected memory spaces which gets flaged by punkbuster. If you use any of these you may need to uninstall or find workarounds.
http://forums.guru3d.com/showpost.php?p=3947886&postcou...

Also some motherboard overclocking tools also effect punkbuster like ASUS OC tools which runs a program called ASDR. Stop this program and your crashes should stop.
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March 2, 2012 10:08:32 AM

Finally, the problem is solved!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

All I have to do is disable hyperthreading. Thanks for the tip russwood1488:)  elbert, I did uninstall punkbuster back when I first started troubleshooting but it did not solve my issue. I also got my new 6990 yesterday and installed it but after 4 consecutive freezes within 30seconds of starting the game I figured it was not the 6990+6970+6970 configuration. My fears of buying a used gpu on ebay were alleviated a bit when I got the 6990. I double checked with msi and they will warranty a gpu based on the serial number alone and all I have to do is put the stock cooler back on before sending it in. Also, the guy who I bought it from took great care of it. Even the packaging looks like it was just opened yesterday. I think I got a great deal. $600 for a 6990 with two years and 4 months left on the warranty, a $150 dollar aftermarket cooler, 2 active dislplay port adapters and a new crossfire cable. On a side note, that artic cooler acceloro twin turbo is a monster! It looks cool as hell when it is installed. Also, after playing bf3 for an hour the 6990 with aftermarket cooling peeked at 67 degrees while the 6990 with stock cooling peeked at 86 degrees. That was with the fan settings on auto. I read that the after market cooler was virtually silent and was skeptical until I turned the fans to 90% and had to shut turn off my sidemount 120mm fans so that I could hear them spinning. Based on that I think I am now a convert and plan on ordering another one from newegg today. I am curious to see how cool I can run under full load with a custom fan profile.
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March 2, 2012 10:29:17 AM

Quote:
All I have to do is disable hyperthreading. Thanks for the tip russwood1488


Quote:
We’ve also read about folks complaining about stuttering issues caused by Hyper-Threading; disabling the feature seems to smooth things out for them.


http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/battlefield-3-graph...

Nice! Atleast you got another 6990...
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March 2, 2012 11:24:30 AM

RussK1 said:
Quote:
All I have to do is disable hyperthreading. Thanks for the tip russwood1488


Quote:
We’ve also read about folks complaining about stuttering issues caused by Hyper-Threading; disabling the feature seems to smooth things out for them.


http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/battlefield-3-graph...

Nice! Atleast you got another 6990...


Even without the bf3 problem, I would have gone picked up another 6990 just because of the high temps when you have two cards that are touching each other with minimal airflow. The only thing that I can't wrap my head around is why with the 6990+6970+6970 disabling hyperthreading did not fix the problem but it does with crossfire 6990.
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March 2, 2012 12:51:24 PM

Best answer selected by alrobichaud.
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