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GTX 460 SLI Issues

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April 28, 2012 1:36:55 AM

I just installed a new motherboard (Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD5) and a second GPU (both Palit GTX 460 1g OC editions) and i'm running into all sorts of issues when I try to run the second card in the other 16x slot. It only seems to work in the 8x slot, and even then still has issues when I try to run Unigine Heaven, or any other kind of benchmark. I can run Crysis 2 with all settings to max with the high res and tessalation packages installed @ about 70-95 FPS. I'm not sure what the issue is at all anymore. I've updated the BIOS and every other driver I can think of (unless I missed something) and I'm truly at a loss.

If I try to run both cards in the 16x slots sometimes the computer will only be on for a minute or 2 before it crashes or the GPU's just stop working. Here's what I'm working with.

MoBo: Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD5
CPU: AMD Phenom II x4 955 3.2Ghz
RAM: 2x 2Gig corsair DDR3 XMS
PSU: TX650w Corsair
GPU: 2x Palit GTX 460 1g OC edition
HDD: Western Digital 1TB eSATA drive
OS: Windows 7 64bit

If anymore info is needed to help me out I'll gladly post it, this problem is insanely frustrating.
Thank you in advance to any help and suggestions.

EDIT: Okay so I went to this site http://extreme.outervision.com/PSUEngine and I put in all of my information and with the second card in the 8x slot I just barely meet the requirements at full bore with the TX-650W and if I move the second card into the second 16x slot I just barely meet the requirements at idle >.< and it says that at 90% load it should be putting out around 675 Watts.

So the question is, is this my problem? Everyone told me that a 460 SLI wouldn't require more than a 650 watt PSU.

More about : gtx 460 sli issues

April 28, 2012 2:23:13 AM

dish_moose said:
Your PSU could be the problem - I run a Silverstone strider gold 750W (850 peak) without issues. Tell us your PSU model
Look here:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/307104-28-what-kind-g...
-Bruce


Thanks for the quick reply bruce. I just edited the post with that thought exactly and added the PSU model.
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April 28, 2012 2:31:11 AM

Your PSU should be fine. I have a 650w and am running 2 cards (5760x1080) without a crash due to power.

I was running into power/setting problems when I was adding in a sound card though. It was some bios settings that were the problem (for the sound card anyway) so it might be that you need to alter some BIOS settings for the SLi? I am not running a xfire or sli setup so I don't know what else could be the cause but it shouldn't be the PSU.

-SP

p.s. make sure you are not overclocking the cards for stability reasons. I know my system crashed in Metro 2033 because I was running a ~25% OC on a 7870
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April 28, 2012 2:32:45 AM

gary1 said:
I don't think it's your PSU.

http://www.techspot.com/review/309-geforce-gtx-460-sli-...
http://www.guru3d.com/article/geforce-gtx-460-sli-revie...

These both report wattages under full stress to be not even close to 648W (maximum).

Unless you have had the PSU for like 6 years and it's gonna die soon.


The PSU isn't old, only about a year or so. and that first link on that list says
447 and 502 for sli and OC sli which I use both of, how much does the CPU use? isn't it over 100? and I normally have my CPU OC'd to 3.8Ghz also.

So if it's not the PSU do you have any other thoughts, I'm so lost at this point ; ;
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April 28, 2012 2:35:53 AM

sharpiedpanda said:
Your PSU should be fine. I have a 650w and am running 2 cards (5760x1080) without a crash due to power.

I was running into power/setting problems when I was adding in a sound card though. It was some bios settings that were the problem (for the sound card anyway) so it might be that you need to alter some BIOS settings for the SLi? I am not running a xfire or sli setup so I don't know what else could be the cause but it shouldn't be the PSU.

-SP

p.s. make sure you are not overclocking the cards for stability reasons. I know my system crashed in Metro 2033 because I was running a ~25% OC on a 7870


I honestly wouldn't even know what to start messing with in the BIOS. I haven't been using my overclocks since I put in the new motherboard. But when I did using a single GTX 460 I had it OC'd to 825/1650/2100 and the CPU OC'd to 3.8Ghz. But like I said I haven't used my OC settings because of all the crashing lately.
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a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 2:38:58 AM

Jimmothy77 said:
The PSU isn't old, only about a year or so. and that first link on that list says
447 and 502 for sli and OC sli which I use both of, how much does the CPU use? isn't it over 100? and I normally have my CPU OC'd to 3.8Ghz also.

So if it's not the PSU do you have any other thoughts, I'm so lost at this point ; ;


Those are FULL SYSTEM power consumption, so max draw of the PSU total.

You shouldn't have to change any settings in BIOS, each of the cards work fine by themselves?
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April 28, 2012 2:58:53 AM

gary1 said:
Those are FULL SYSTEM power consumption, so max draw of the PSU total.

You shouldn't have to change any settings in BIOS, each of the cards work fine by themselves?


Oh okay, I thought it was just what the GPU's were drawing.

Yes each card works great by itself and for all of my games they work fine in SLI with the main card in the first 16x slot and the second card in the 8x slot. But if I try to run Unigine Heaven or FurMark it will crash.

But it essentially doesn't work at all with both in the 16x slots. As soon as I do anything that brings both cards above like 10-15% load it either freezes, or stops putting video to the monitor. Mostly it just freezes.
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a b U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 3:02:39 AM

It definitely sounds like a power issue. Any chance you could grab another PSU somehow?
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April 28, 2012 3:11:31 AM

gary1 said:
It definitely sounds like a power issue. Any chance you could grab another PSU somehow?


I don't know anyone else who has one that I could use. I will have to buy one or take it to the local computer store and they will charge me 50 bucks to check if that's what it is. and $50 is halfway or more to a decent PSU right?
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a c 540 U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 5:05:27 AM

Two Palit GeForce GTX 460 Sonic Platinum 1 GB, that have a factory Core Clock of 800 MHz and a Memory Clock of 1000 MHz, in 2-way SLI mode shouldn't be drawing any more than 360 Watts when running Furmark or 275 Watts when gaming. That's just for the graphics cards only.

The remaining components should be drawing less than 180 Watts.

If the power supply has a +12 Volt continuous current rating of 45 Amps or greater it will be sufficient.

The Corsair Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 should definitely be electrically sufficient for your system configuration. It's just deficient by two 6-pin PCI Express supplementary power connectors, since you need four of them for two GeForce GTX 460 cards.
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April 28, 2012 6:22:14 AM

ko888 said:
Two Palit GeForce GTX 460 Sonic Platinum 1 GB, that have a factory Core Clock of 800 MHz and a Memory Clock of 1000 MHz, in 2-way SLI mode shouldn't be drawing any more than 360 Watts when running Furmark or 275 Watts when gaming. That's just for the graphics cards only.

The remaining components should be drawing less than 180 Watts.

If the power supply has a +12 Volt continuous current rating of 45 Amps or greater it will be sufficient.

The Corsair Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 should definitely be electrically sufficient for your system configuration. It's just deficient by two 6-pin PCI Express supplementary power connectors, since you need four of them for two GeForce GTX 460 cards.


Well my Palit GTX 460's aren't the Sonic Platinum Edition, they are just the 1gig Sonic OC edition, they both have stock core clocks of 700 MHz and Memory Clocks of 900. I had to buy 2 molex adapters for the second card, is that the issue then, that my CPU has the "power" but isn't really rated for SLI mode?
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April 28, 2012 7:17:57 PM

I see you have a good psu...So are your temps ok? I got things very hot when I added my 2nd GTX460 - had to physically push the cards apart so that I could blow cool air on them. When I get a new case I'll make sure I have a fan in the side blowing at my gpus.
-Bruce
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a c 540 U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 7:24:50 PM

Jimmothy77 said:
Well my Palit GTX 460's aren't the Sonic Platinum Edition, they are just the 1gig Sonic OC edition, they both have stock core clocks of 700 MHz and Memory Clocks of 900. I had to buy 2 molex adapters for the second card, is that the issue then, that my CPU has the "power" but isn't really rated for SLI mode?

I would say the problem is with the motherboard. Contact GIGABYTE about it.

Bad PCIEX16 slot spacing on that motherboard is another problem.
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April 28, 2012 9:00:29 PM

Okay so seems like you guys have narrowed it down to either being a PSU issue (whether it's dying or just can't handle the setup) or it's the motherboard. So should I test it with a bigger PSU and if that doesn't solve it RMA my motherboard?
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a c 540 U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 9:01:11 PM

Jimmothy77 said:
Okay so seems like you guys have narrowed it down to either being a PSU issue (whether it's dying or just can't handle the setup) or it's the motherboard. So should I test it with a bigger PSU and if that doesn't solve it RMA my motherboard?

Sounds like a good plan.
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April 28, 2012 9:21:13 PM

Quote:
This guy is running overclocks on his cards.
From experience, my single TX650W handles a single heavily overclocked phenom II x4 B55 at 4.2ghz with a 850mhz GTX 480.
If it is a power issue, i would be surprised, but i am sure 2 460's will draw close to that of a single 480 or more.


I did find something interesting last night, after thinking about the molex adapters I had to buy for the extra card I wondered if maybe that's where the issue was. I'm no hardware guru by any means but I am good at troubleshooting so I decided to try switching the adapter plugs and see if it changed anything.

Sure enough, with the stock plugs from the PSU plugged into the secondary card (the one running in the 8x slot) the setup runs just fine, I'm able to run furmark with no issues, I get 35 FPS at 1080p and my temps stay below 75 degrees on both cards. BUT if I switch the plugs and put both of the molex adapters in the second card and the stock plugs in the first card (16x) then things don't run so smooth.

Now I have no idea what this means but maybe someone else does. I'm just trying to get you guys as much info as I can. Also, I'm unable to run my stable CPU OC's that I was able to run on my GA-880, and my idle temps seem a little bit higher (5 or 6 degrees) than they were before.
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April 28, 2012 9:39:57 PM

still has issues when I try to run Unigine Heaven, or any other kind of benchmark. I can run Crysis 2 with all settings to max with the high res and tessalation packages installed @ about 70-95 FPS

How does anyone read that and come up with " power supply problem " to begin with?

Now I see he's also able to run Furmark, that should stop the " it's your power supply " responses
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April 28, 2012 9:44:39 PM

delluser1 said:
still has issues when I try to run Unigine Heaven, or any other kind of benchmark. I can run Crysis 2 with all settings to max with the high res and tessalation packages installed @ about 70-95 FPS

How does anyone read that and come up with " power supply problem " to begin with?

Now I see he's also able to run Furmark, that should stop the " it's your power supply " responses


I'm only able to run Furmark with the second card in the 8x slot, it crashes instantly if I have the second card in the other 16x slot. But I can't get Unigine Heaven to run at all, not matter what I do. I basically can't do anything with the second card in the 16x slot. So do you think it may be a motherboard issue then? Like a bad PCIe slot?
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April 28, 2012 9:47:03 PM

Jimmothy77 said:
I'm only able to run Furmark with the second card in the 8x slot, it crashes instantly if I have the second card in the other 16x slot. But I can't get Unigine Heaven to run at all, not matter what I do. I basically can't do anything with the second card in the 16x slot. So do you think it may be a motherboard issue then? Like a bad PCIe slot?

It's not a power supply issue, so......
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April 28, 2012 9:52:55 PM

delluser1 said:
It's not a power supply issue, so......


Is that yes? lol

Like I said I'm not so much hardware savvy, I mostly stick to software.
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a c 540 U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 10:01:54 PM

Jimmothy77 said:
I did find something interesting last night, after thinking about the molex adapters I had to buy for the extra card I wondered if maybe that's where the issue was. I'm no hardware guru by any means but I am good at troubleshooting so I decided to try switching the adapter plugs and see if it changed anything.

Sure enough, with the stock plugs from the PSU plugged into the secondary card (the one running in the 8x slot) the setup runs just fine, I'm able to run furmark with no issues, I get 35 FPS at 1080p and my temps stay below 75 degrees on both cards. BUT if I switch the plugs and put both of the molex adapters in the second card and the stock plugs in the first card (16x) then things don't run so smooth.

Now I have no idea what this means but maybe someone else does. I'm just trying to get you guys as much info as I can. Also, I'm unable to run my stable CPU OC's that I was able to run on my GA-880, and my idle temps seem a little bit higher (5 or 6 degrees) than they were before.

Have you tried one hardwired PCIe connector to each graphics card and one dual 4-pin Molex peripheral to 6-pin PCIe adapter cables to each graphics card?

What is the quality of those dual 4-pin Molex peripheral to 6-pin PCIe adapter cables that you purchased? If the wire gauge is too light it will be a problem.
Share
April 28, 2012 10:04:09 PM

ko888 said:
Have you tried one hardwired PCIe connector to each graphics card and one dual 4-pin Molex peripheral to 6-pin PCIe adapter cables to each graphics card?

What is the quality of those dual 4-pin Molex peripheral to 6-pin PCIe adapter cables that you purchased? If the wire gauge is too light it will be a problem.


I'm actually in the process of trying exactly this right now. It just kinda dawned on me to try that a few minutes ago. They seem like they are pretty good quality, they were 20 bucks if that makes any difference at all. I bought them from a local computer store.
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April 28, 2012 10:09:53 PM

Sorry had to run
If the card causes the system to crash when in the second x16 slot, but works in the x8 slot, I'd think motherboard
As far as Heaven not running but being able to game, drivers or bad download

PS;
Use 1 native 6 pin and 1 adapter per card

Edit, gotta quit leaving stuff open, I see ko mentioned the power layout
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April 28, 2012 10:18:07 PM

Okay so it's seems 1 native and 1 adapter in each while running both 16x slots was a step in the right direction but i'm still running into some issues. I was able to run Furmark with both in the 16x slots (Hurray!) but I had a funky green strobe the whole time firmark was running and my FPS was exactly the same as when I had the second card in the 8x slot.

EDIT: I tried something because this green strobe happened to me the first time I played FFXIV in SLI but it only did it in fullscreen mode, so I changed furmark to run in non fullscreen mode and there is no strobe. But shoudn't my FPS be a lot higher with the second card in the 16x slot?
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April 28, 2012 10:24:22 PM

I have been using 285.62 recently because it works best for FFXIV, i'm upgrading back to the newest one again to see if it helps any.
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April 28, 2012 10:38:09 PM

I tried the 296 drivers and there was no difference in FPS when I turned on SLI and ran furmark. I'm updating to the 301 beta drivers now to see if it helps any.
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April 28, 2012 10:57:57 PM

So it seems everything is working stable with the exception of the full screen strobe. and i get the same FPS in Furmark whether I have SLI enabled or not.
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a c 540 U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 11:00:09 PM

Jimmothy77 said:
So it seems everything is working stable with the exception of the full screen strobe. and i get the same FPS in Furmark whether I have SLI enabled or not.

When you're "running" in SLI mode does GPU-Z report that the cards are actually running in SLI mode?
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April 28, 2012 11:05:47 PM

Quote:
Furmark is not a game......


I understand that Furmark is not a game, I never implied that it was lol. Does it not show performance differences with SLI enabled, and I have MSI afterburner running and monitoring GPU temps/load/fan speed through my G15 keyboard and onscreen and GPU-z and all of them are showing both cards running at 99% load during furmark testing.
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a c 540 U Graphics card
April 28, 2012 11:11:45 PM

Jimmothy77 said:
I understand that Furmark is not a game, I never implied that it was lol. Does it not show performance differences with SLI enabled, and I have MSI afterburner running and monitoring GPU temps/load/fan speed through my G15 keyboard and onscreen and GPU-z and all of them are showing both cards running at 99% load during furmark testing.

What is the CPU load while you're running Furmark?
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April 28, 2012 11:15:59 PM

ko888 said:
What is the CPU load while you're running Furmark?


CPU load is 35% when Furmark is running.
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April 28, 2012 11:23:01 PM

I've tried that, I still get the same FPS. and I also get the green strobe.
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April 28, 2012 11:29:54 PM

Okay, so it's working now. But I still get the strobe in fullscreen mode.
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April 28, 2012 11:59:19 PM

I think everything is finally working good now! I turned the SLI bridge around and the green strobe is gone. Not sure why but it is! Everything seems to be working great. I will test everything a few times to make sure but things are certainly looking up! Thank you guys for all of your help so far, you have no idea how much I appreciate it :D 
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April 29, 2012 12:08:51 AM

Jimmothy77 said:
I think everything is finally working good now! I turned the SLI bridge around and the green strobe is gone. Not sure why but it is! Everything seems to be working great. I will test everything a few times to make sure but things are certainly looking up!


Good to hear :) 

Jimmothy77 said:
But shoudn't my FPS be a lot higher with the second card in the 16x slot?

Not that I remember, Google x16 v x8

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April 29, 2012 1:01:11 AM

ko888 said:
GTX 480 SLI PCIe Bandwidth Perf. - x16/x16 vs. x8/x8

Their conclusion? In no way shape or form is x8/x8 harming our gameplay experience at up to at 2560x1600 resolution with 4X AA.

http://hardocp.com/article/2010/08/23/gtx_480_sli_pcie_...


Oh wow...So I don't even need to be running in 16x/16x in the first place. Well I'm glas I solved the issue with the cards but I guess I'll just go back to 8x/8x then if that's the case. My top card runs about 10-15 degrees cooler in the lower card.

EDIT: So does increasing the AA change anything performance wise? I run FFXIV with 16x QCSAA.
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April 29, 2012 4:42:17 AM

Jimmothy77 said:
Oh wow...So I don't even need to be running in 16x/16x in the first place. Well I'm glas I solved the issue with the cards but I guess I'll just go back to 8x/8x then if that's the case. My top card runs about 10-15 degrees cooler in the lower card.

EDIT: So does increasing the AA change anything performance wise? I run FFXIV with 16x QCSAA.

The general rule of thumb is that the better the quality the bigger the performance hit.
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April 29, 2012 11:09:32 PM

I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who was involved in helping me get this figures out. I'm now running my CPU OC'd at 4 GHz stable and SLI GTX 460's OC'd from 700 to 850 MHz stable :D 
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April 29, 2012 11:19:36 PM

Quote:
which driver set are you running now.?



The 301 beta.
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April 29, 2012 11:55:43 PM

Seems to work good so far. I may end up switching back to 285 for better performance with FFXIV if it runs crappy with the new beta. I haven't had a chance to try it. Just got off a 17 hour shift and I haven'tst in 3 days. I'm gonna go take a nice little coma now lol.
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April 30, 2012 12:11:03 AM

Quote:
:non:  285
280 is better than 285..
295 seem really stable for me.


280 is better for ffxiv?
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May 9, 2012 5:12:09 PM

Best answer selected by Jimmothy77.
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May 9, 2012 5:19:55 PM

I just wanted to make a quick update here, and thank everyone one last time for all of the help here at Tom's Hardware.

Everything is running fantastic, I bought a Rosewill Thor V2 and a PC Power & Cooling 950w PSU and they are both awesome. The Thor has fantastic airflow and the PSU is super quite, I can't hear it at all.

One thing I completely spaced out during this whole issue I had was that I was running a 180w Cooler Master V8 CPU cooler. Which apparently draws way more power than I originally thought.

I did a fresh install of win 7 pro and my computer and games are running faster than ever before. Next on my list is a SSD and new RAM. I've got my Phenom II x4 955 OC'd from 3.2 to 4.1 GHz and running strong, stable and cool (never more than 55c when running prime95) and my GTX 460's are running OC'd from 700 to 900MHz core and never going over 75c under full load in furmark. I have yet to see temps above 62 in any game, including crysis 2 at max settings and FFXIV on max ^^

Thank you all for your help. in the long run I think the major issue was those damn molex adapters and the PSU not being quite up to snuff.
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