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SLI gtx 670 upgrade

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October 25, 2012 5:04:12 AM

Hi All. I am in the process of changing over my GPU setup. The old gtx 470 died (under warranty) which I have returned and been given store credit for (yay). After doing a fair bit of research I am considering SLI gtx 670. The main reason being I have a 120Hz screen and have been hoping to really push up into some high frame rates to see what it can do with games like Battlefield 3, Max Payne 3, Batman: AC etc. I really like how the higher frame rates look on less demanding games.

I think my PSU could handle it and my mobo supports SLI, but my main concern at the moment is my mobo is only PCI - E 2.0.

From what I've seen in a few articles, PCI E 2.0 vs PCI E 3.0 isn't a big problem. 5-10% performance difference.

Has anyone had expeience, or could point me in the direction of more information on this sort of upgrade?

I have built a couple systems over the years and helped out on a quite a few builds with friends, but I don't consider myself anything like an expert :) 
Obviously if there is any other potential problems you can see, any help is greatly appreciated.

Also, I don't really need any links to bargain GPU's on sale anywhere. I have to purchase a Gigabyte GPU from the store I originally purchased from.

Current build:

MOBO - Asus p8p67 Pro
CPU - i5 2500K
CPU Cooler - CM Hyper 212+
GPU - (original) Gigabyte gtx 570
HDD - Samsung 1TB F3 Spinpoint
SSD - Samsung 830 120GB
RAM - 4 GB Kit GSkill DDR3 1600
PSU - Antec TP750
CASE - Coolermaster CM690 II
DISPLAY- Samsung S27A950D 120Hz
Sony DVD RW
Windows 7 64 Home Premium

More about : sli gtx 670 upgrade

a b U Graphics card
October 25, 2012 5:14:02 AM

The PCIE-2.0 is not a problem. The "5-10%" losses are exaggerated. Its hardly 2-3%. Probably lesser.

One minor suggestion is to add more RAM. Another 4GB wouldnt hurt. You have a rock-solid build otherwise. :) 
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October 25, 2012 5:38:36 AM

mayankleoboy1 said:
The PCIE-2.0 is not a problem. The "5-10%" losses are exaggerated. Its hardly 2-3%. Probably lesser.

One minor suggestion is to add more RAM. Another 4GB wouldnt hurt. You have a rock-solid build otherwise. :) 


Are you sure? I remember reading a while back that single configuration is the same on pcie2.0 and 3.0, but once you go SLI x8x8 in pcie3.0 is the same as x16x16 in pcie2.0 which the p8p67 does not have. Just double checking is all, afterall I could have remembered incorrectly.
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a b U Graphics card
October 25, 2012 6:14:27 AM

Yes i also read that someone was having problem in SLI on pcie 2.0 as it goes 8.0 X 8.0 on SLI & the same reduces the SLI perforamce of pcie 3.0 cards. you should do a reasearch or may go for single card solution maybe a 680 or 7970 ghz edition
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a b U Graphics card
October 25, 2012 7:40:20 AM

Tom's Hardware did an article on this.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/pci-express-scaling...
You would be running each card at PCI-e 2.0 x8. Each card has significantly better performance than a gtx 570, which is limited by 2% at x8. Now this isn't anywhere scientific, but based on that data and the fact that x4 limited the 570 by 9% a good factory oc'ed 670 would probably be set back around 5-7% running at x8.
If you can find real numbers, that would be better. I can say though that it probably wouldn't be enough of a difference to justify a motherboard upgrade, especially when haswell comes out in 6 months.
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a c 134 U Graphics card
October 25, 2012 8:39:10 AM

I would consider a memory upgrade before touching a 2nd 670. I have a 670 and Arkham city I'll post my specs and my benchmark. I would get up to 8 gigs of ram before even thinking about getting 2 video cards and a single 670 is way more then enough for any of those games.

System Setup:

Intel Core i5 2500k
Asrock Z68 EXTREME4 Gen 3
Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB OC
Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600 8GB (2x4)
Creative Soundblaster X-Fi Titanium Fatality Professional
Samsung 830 256GB SATA III SSD
Seagate Barracuda 500 GB SATA II
LG 12x Super Multi Blue WH12LS38
CM Storm Sniper
Corsair AX850 PSU
Corsair Hydro H100






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October 25, 2012 12:05:45 PM

Thanks for all the comments/info so far guys.

I agree the memory upgrade is a 'no-brainer'. With RAM so cheap I'll upgrade to 8GB for sure. Or would 16GB be Overkill? This system is used 100% for gaming...

@ Kevin83. Thanks for the link. I agree with your math, but the question is how do all of those numbers compare with a gtx670 (vs the gtx570 ) I am wondering if the newer gtx 670 GPU would stretch out into the PCI E 3.0 bandwidth more than a gtx570 would?

@ dyc4ha & akshayghai29785. From what I understand, a single gtx6xx GPU on PCI E 2.0 vs PCI E 3.0 doesn't take much of a performance hit, but potentially 2 x GPUs suffer more.

But then see this link...

http://www.hardocp.com/article/2012/07/18/pci_express_2...


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a b U Graphics card
October 25, 2012 3:12:09 PM

I'm pretty sure that Hardocp's testing at 2-way sli with 2 gtx 680s is a good indicator of the difference. You'd be seeing - 1-4 fps slower in most modern games.
If you're trying to maximize your gaming experience I would highly suggest you change out the cooler for a noctua nh-d14, zalman cnps12x, or xigmatek dark knight II. All are significantly better performing than the 212 plus and will enable to overclock your CPU higher.
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October 25, 2012 10:52:09 PM

Think Im sold on SLI 670. Now just need to wait for stock (Sigh)

@bigshootr8. Thanks for those screen grabs. Looks like your system kills Batman AC. Have you been happy with that GPU? I will be getting some Gigabyte GPU, as a restriction the store I purchased from has put on my credit. With my 120Hz screen, I have found that you really notice the 'smooth motion' coming into play when you are averaging past 80-85ish fps hence the need for a 2nd 670.

@ kevin83. My CPU is OCed to 4.5GHz at present. Should it be higher? A few months back a friend put together a system with the Noctua d14. That thing is massive, not sure it would fit in my case! Ugliest cooler ever too :)  Those other look nice, but can't really see them listed on any Aussie sites I usually look around on.
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a c 134 U Graphics card
October 25, 2012 11:19:00 PM

I am quite happy with the graphics card its quiet cool and destroys any game I've thrown at it wish I had more games to throw at it though :p  Oh okay so for your 120hz monitor you're trying to get those frames that makes sense didn't think that was the case. Yea my card beats batman ac to bits :p  which it looks much better with physx on just saying :p 
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a b U Graphics card
October 26, 2012 8:43:52 AM

I'm not sure a noctua nh-d14 would be much better performance wise than the 212 if you're already able to hit 4.5ghz stable, but it might bump you up to 4.7-4.8. It's more about decreasing the wear that kind of load puts on the cpu by keeping the temperature down.
Also the lower cpu temperature means less heat being bleeding over to the gpus, which can allow them in turn to overclock better/stay cooler.
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October 26, 2012 11:24:30 AM

Shegamer said:
Think Im sold on SLI 670. Now just need to wait for stock (Sigh)

@bigshootr8. Thanks for those screen grabs. Looks like your system kills Batman AC. Have you been happy with that GPU? I will be getting some Gigabyte GPU, as a restriction the store I purchased from has put on my credit. With my 120Hz screen, I have found that you really notice the 'smooth motion' coming into play when you are averaging past 80-85ish fps hence the need for a 2nd 670.

@ kevin83. My CPU is OCed to 4.5GHz at present. Should it be higher? A few months back a friend put together a system with the Noctua d14. That thing is massive, not sure it would fit in my case! Ugliest cooler ever too :)  Those other look nice, but can't really see them listed on any Aussie sites I usually look around on.

Make sure to get the asus gtx 670 TOP, which is the best 670 card and is better than stock 680s.
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October 26, 2012 10:26:07 PM

@nadz953. Unfortunately I am restricted to buying Gigabyte, a condition set by the store I purchased from, as this is a warranty replacement. Tom's seems to think the Gigabyte cards are ok:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-670-tes...

@kevin83. I do like the idea of a upgrading the CPU Cooler to improve the life of system. My CPU Cooler Installer is currently travelling the globe. I might start another thread to see what is the best option in a few months.

What is the best option for RAM these days? (Do I need to start another thread sorry)

I would have got 8GB 1600Mhz DDR3 CL9 1.5V kit. But 2133Mhz is $10 more? Or are people getting 16GB these days?
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a c 134 U Graphics card
October 26, 2012 10:29:58 PM

People have expressed over a couple of threads that for a i5 system that 1600 is enough anything passed that will give minimal gains.
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a b U Graphics card
October 27, 2012 9:37:16 AM

8gb ddr3 cl8 is the best option, but cl9 is almost as good and the same in gaming scenarios. And is way cheaper. 16gb is for people who run massive video-editing rigs, run tons of things at the same time or use a temporary ram-drive.
I like g-skill as a brand.
The gigabyte windforce 3x 670 is just as good as the Asus when it works, but people have discussed occassional reliability issues with it. I wouldn't worry too much about it though.
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November 6, 2012 7:20:35 AM

Best answer selected by Shegamer.
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