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Dual GPU

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 26, 2012 2:50:01 PM

Good morning/afternoon/evening all,

Here is a question that has been plaguing me over this past weekend.

The System:

single monitor, 1080p DVI.
Current Video Card is an AMD Radeon 6970.
Mobo is an ASUS p8p67 Deluxe rev 3
i5-2500k
Windows 7 Ultimate x64
16gb Ram

The Scenario:

I do not wish to get rid of my AMD card, but I want to add a nvidia card.

I am hoping to find out if it is possible to have both card running at the same time, but have them as different inputs, (Ie AMD on DVI, and Nvidia on HDMI) and switch between them by changing my input.

OR

If a software "Switch" solution is availble. (Kind of like an A/B switch)


Reason:

I want to see how Cuda/Phsyx changes the game dynamics as well as details.

Really the only reason or logic I have for this situation is that the 6970 was a xmas gift and I don't want simply discard it. I am starting to consider switching to Nvidia for my graphical needs (Gaming).

(Note: I have not bought the nvidia card, my friend upgrade his 570 to the 680 and he is going to loan me the 570 for this trial if it is possible.)

More about : dual gpu

Best solution

a b U Graphics card
March 26, 2012 3:01:35 PM

Scenario one works.
Scenario two works, you switch your "primary display output" in windows "Screen Resolution" settings.

The best solution in my opinion is to get a second monitor and compare sidebyside.

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March 26, 2012 3:03:09 PM

I don't know if you could switch like you want but even if you could just get a second 6970.

Two 6970 will beat a single 680gtx by a mile and its cheaper for you to buy a second 6970 then a 680.

I wouldn't reccomand anyone with a 580gtx or a hd6970 to buy neither a 680gtx or a hd7970.

Crossfire/sli of last generation GPU > Single new generation GPU.
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a b U Graphics card
March 26, 2012 3:08:17 PM

I would figure out a couple of benchmarks and a way to monitor your progress. Test first with the ati card. Then remove it and install the nvidia card then test again.

Running both cards will not be the challange, what ever one is set to be the main monitor in windows is the one that will run the games when they are launched.

I guess you could install both cards, then plug one into the monitor using dvi and plug the other into the monitor using HDMI.

In the windows Display then "adjust resolution" section, you will turn on both cards and tell the computer you have a dual display.

Lets pretend the ati card is plugged into the DVI. When you want to use the ati card, you go to the windows adjust resolution screen and select the ati card as the main display. Then set your monito input to DVI.

Then when you want to use your Nvidia card go to the windows adjust resolution screen and set your nivida card as the main screen. Then on your monitor set it to HDMI.

Its ugly but it should work to allow you to test and drive the same monitor from 2 cards.

The only other thought i have is to manually swithc the monitor cable from card to card.
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a b U Graphics card
March 26, 2012 3:10:20 PM

No whatever video card is in the top slot will be the primary and all games will be rendered to that card. You would have to physicly swap cards to compair. And why run both unless you have like 3 or more screens. Just put each in and benchmark for whatever you are looking for then pick the one you like best and stick with it.

Thent
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March 26, 2012 3:42:38 PM

One game that apparently has great physx in it is batman arkham asylum. Other than that I don't think it's that big of a deal. First thing you want to do, is do some research and find out what games out there have physx, I think there's an article somewhere that posts screenshots of the differences.

The real question is, what games do you play? Depending on the games, you'll see absolutely no change or upgrade.

There's really no difference between the amd and nvidia card in the way they play.

If you actually want to upgrade, it looks like you have an Crossfire motherboard correct? Make sure you have I think at least a high quality 850w psu and then buy another 6970.
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March 26, 2012 3:52:40 PM

Thank you all for the quick Replys.

Let me just add this so you all understand what I am looking for.

This type of setup I am using for evaluating 70+ different games at different settings.
I am planning to use the results I see from both cards on all different settings, to set the baseline for future card I go with.

2 main things I am trying to evaluate, is color/graphical depth, and if phsyx is worth it.
I want to get the most bang for my buck.

Honestly I don't really want to have to get on my knees over 70 times switching the video cards from PCI-E slot 1 and 2.

Crossfire on single monitor is overkill, and with current monitor really anything over 60FPS would do no good.

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March 26, 2012 4:07:42 PM

mzylon1 said:
Thank you all for the quick Replys.

Let me just add this so you all understand what I am looking for.

This type of setup I am using for evaluating 70+ different games at different settings.
I am planning to use the results I see from both cards on all different settings, to set the baseline for future card I go with.

2 main things I am trying to evaluate, is color/graphical depth, and if phsyx is worth it.
I want to get the most bang for my buck.

Honestly I don't really want to have to get on my knees over 70 times switching the video cards from PCI-E slot 1 and 2.

Crossfire on single monitor is overkill, and with current monitor really anything over 60FPS would do no good.


Well then save yourself the trouble and stick with your hd6970. Like you said for a 1080p set-up crossfire is overkill but it still a bether option then buying a 680gtx since you already have the 6970.

A 6970 still able to run BF3 at ultra 4AA at over 40FPS. (and any other game at 60+)

You don't have to buy a new GPU everytimes a new generation show and if you realy want to upgrade then buy the second 6970. It will be a bether $ investement because it will outperform a single 680gtx so you can buy an upgrade only in 2-3 years.

A second 6970 will cost you about 350$ and you will feel the next to upgrade it later then if you go for the 680gtx.

The 680gtx will cost you500$ and lets say your lucky and you find a buyer for your old 6970 at 250$ it still 250$ out of your poket for a minor upgrade.

So its either the trouble to sell your old 6970 + 250-300$ to get a minor upgrade.
Or 350$ for a major upgrade.
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a b U Graphics card
March 26, 2012 4:34:46 PM

You wouldn't have to swap the card 70 times. You could run the game, take notes, and a screenshot. Then after you run your gauntlet of 70 games, swap cards, rinse and repeat.
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March 26, 2012 5:17:58 PM

Your right there, it would be personal preferance to simply load the game play a level or area, close, switch cards and repeat the sample level or area. :) . But my question was answered. That the 2 card can co exsist in the same machine.

Thanks all
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March 26, 2012 5:18:38 PM

Best answer selected by Mzylon1.
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