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Crossfire With Different VRAM Amounts

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 15, 2012 1:42:35 PM

I built a PC for gaming back in March with the help of my nephew (as I hadn't been keeping up with PC hardware for a while). I initially ordered a Sapphire Radeon HD 6850-1GB which he said I could later get a second and crossfire for better performance. After ordering it I found that for $30 more I could buy the Sapphire Radeon HD 6850-2GB and switched to it, with full intentions of buying a second for crossfire later on. It appears that his card came out in Nov/Dec 2011 time frame so it's not exactly old.

I've been playing BF3, Skyrim and TERA and noticing some slowdowns occasionally, so I was going to add the second card for crossfire (Basically Max out what I can for better performance). When I went to Newegg.com, it shows that the 2GB version is deactivated and not likely to be stocked again. I have checked everywhere and only found one retailer who wants $199 and has a limited supply.

My question is: Is there any issues or drawbacks if I were to buy a second card but a Radeon 6850 1GB and use it for crossfire (therefore having one 2GB VRAM card and one 1GB VRAM card)? If there would be issues and necessary to have a second 2GB card (for $200), would I be better off upgrading to a Sapphire Radeon 7870 ($360) and selling my 6850-2GB (would about equal out in cost)?

Thanks.

Here are my PC specs:

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4-965 Black Edition
MOBO: AsRock 970 Extreme3
RAM: 8GB Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600 PC3 12800
PSU: Seasonic X650 Gold
SSD: Corsair Force Series 120GB
HDD: Western Digital 500GB

More about : crossfire vram amounts

May 15, 2012 1:49:42 PM

The main point of ram in the card is for keeping textures, so crossfiring a 6850 1gb / 2gb will lock the 2gb card down to 1gb while not even doubling performance. I would go with a 7850 / 7870. But how may monitors / what resolution do you run at?
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May 15, 2012 1:56:44 PM

ltpenguin said:
The main point of ram in the card is for keeping textures, so crossfiring a 6850 1gb / 2gb will lock the 2gb card down to 1gb while not even doubling performance. I would go with a 7850 / 7870. But how may monitors / what resolution do you run at?


Only one monitor for now and resolution at 1920 X 1080.
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May 15, 2012 2:03:21 PM

it will work very well and for 1080p 1gb is already enough for most of games, but see the problem is that both will be running at 1gb like @itpenguin said, and so the extra cash you spend to get a 2gb version, will never be used, if you really have no other option and can't match go with 1gb and both will be running at 1gb, but that is just a waste of money.
To play at that resolution you will be ok, but if in the future you go over that, some games will lost a little performance due to the memory size.
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May 15, 2012 2:03:33 PM

ltpenguin said:
The main point of ram in the card is for keeping textures, so crossfiring a 6850 1gb / 2gb will lock the 2gb card down to 1gb while not even doubling performance. I would go with a 7850 / 7870. But how may monitors / what resolution do you run at?


Unfortunately, I'm the type of person who wants the most bang for his buck. With my current setup everything runs fine (occasional stutter) maybe on TERA and can only run BF3 on high), but should I be content with what I have or spent $300-$400 more and upgrade GPU, CPU and RAM?
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May 15, 2012 2:05:47 PM

UnPocoLoco73 said:
Only one monitor for now and resolution at 1920 X 1080.

I would recommend a 7850, it can run a 1920x1080 monitor at high res with some aa but you might want to step up to a gtx 670 for dual monitors at 1920x1080 the 670 might be a little out of your price range, (as for your cpu i would stick with it ( i have heard nothing good about bulldozer) unless you want to make a switch to intel which would cost you and most likely be unnecessary.

Notes:
670 may be bottle necked by your cpu
7850/7870 would be fine for single monitor
i recommend a single monitor
7870 has very good bang for buck
7850 is still reputable card capable of 1080p max settings

Article:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-7870-revi...
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