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Is it possible...?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 5, 2013 9:43:52 AM

Hey everyone from tom's hardware,
Kinda new to the community and saw a few threads before I signed up that interested me. I've been looking around and I've found it difficult to see any proper information or setup to get two graphics cards from two different vendors to work together. The closest I've seen were from some older graphics cards i.e. the OP was using a Radeon HD 6850 like mine but using an old nVidia graphics card for Physx and it worked for them. I'm unsure if it's because I have a newer nVidia GPU?

These are the graphics cards I want to work together:
ATI/AMD XFX Radeon HD 6850 1GB GDDR5
and
nVidia Geforce 550 Ti 1GB GDDR5

I use my ATI card for the main display and for the graphics. The card does not handle Physx well at all and Tessellation is a problem, running the nVidia graphics card runs through Physx and Tessellation quite well so in my opinion I think running both at the same time will improve both Graphics, Physx and handling Tessellation.

I've run the ATI through Physx and it rund about 1 or 2 frames per second.
I've also run nVidia through the same Physx program and it's run around 30fps.
Running both ATI and nVidia normally without any modifications ran around 20fps on display and 10fps on Physx so my question is if I can unlock/dedicate the nVidia card so it works only for Tessellation and Physx?

I've heard of using them Hybrid but the instructions were not clear so I did a rough download and install of Hybrid and used Pre-Hybrid but I think what this did was disable a Bink .dll file in system which stopped me from being able to play DMC, Bioshock, Resident Evil 5 and alot of other games I own.

Could someone help me out a little on what Files to download? Any help would be greatly appreciated. What do I need to do and I'm new to Hybrid so please, Clear Instructions would really help and I'm sure you'd also help someone else out with the same issue.

More about : question

March 5, 2013 4:28:13 PM

Does anyone know if there are certain drivers I should install or certain software to make this work? :<
March 5, 2013 4:30:04 PM

No. A better way to solve your problem would to go with either Nvidia and buy one card or Crossfire 2 Radeon cards, one to handle the rendering of the game so on so forth and the other to simulate physics and what not! I'm not sure how to do this but I know there is a thread on Tomshardware somewhere.
Related resources
a c 271 U Graphics card
a c 171 Î Nvidia
March 5, 2013 4:34:25 PM

Due to an ex ATI/AMD employee Nvidia do not want ATi/AMD users to have access to their PhysX API so they're not going to make it easy for you to circumnavigate the blocks they have put in place.
March 5, 2013 4:36:05 PM

Starmaderp said:
No. A better way to solve your problem would to go with either Nvidia and buy one card or Crossfire 2 Radeon cards, one to handle the rendering of the game so on so forth and the other to simulate physics and what not! I'm not sure how to do this but I know there is a thread on Tomshardware somewhere.


Thanks, I'll look around but in the meantime I hope someone out there know's how to get Hybrid to work on two different cards. I was hoping to get an nVidia GeForce 680 but after getting the 550 Ti I think my wallet took the brunt of it. It was my fault for not seeing that this card was not as good as it was so instead I'm giving it to my dad so he can at least get rid of his GT 240 haha xD
a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 4:40:01 PM

The only working setup with AMD/Nvidia cards I know of is using Lucid Hydra, but it requires a motherboard with that chip. Still, it never works nearly as well as SLI/Crossfire.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/2910

Another bit of advice: I've had 2x6870 crossfire in the past, and it gave me a world of issues, to the point that it was more pratical to leave one of the cards off and only enable crossfire on specific games where it worked.

Considering the 6850 is the fastest of the two cards you have, I can only anticipate your experience with two cards would be even worse.
March 5, 2013 4:46:17 PM

Mousemonkey said:
Due to an ex ATI/AMD employee Nvidia do not want ATi/AMD users to have access to their PhysX API so they're not going to make it easy for you to circumnavigate the blocks they have put in place.


Thanks, I guess it's just competition that both nVidia and ATI could become a brilliant setup if a proper Hybrid system was in place so I understand that they put the blocks in place, kinda wondering if there's a program/way to bypass all those because ATI/AMD sell great cards and cheaply but their downside is Physx and Tessellation. nVidia is a great company too but their cards can be a bit pricey and the upside is you get Physx and it handles Tessellation well. So getting a cheap ATI and cheap nVidia would still be able to compete with both company's at their best cards if used properly.
I wanted to play my games with Physx enabled since I never got to fully experience it. e.g. Mirrors Edge, Fabrics wave in the wind and look real as well as smoke in certain levels and light particles but the thing that kills it is the breaking of glass from Enemies. This plus other games that run Physx look amazing with Physx on so that's kinda why I want to experience Physx for myself than what video's of people setup being able to play it haha

I'm thinking a 660 Ti or save up more but maybe in a years time for a 680? :/ 
a c 85 U Graphics card
a b Î Nvidia
March 5, 2013 4:53:51 PM

Starmaderp said:
No. A better way to solve your problem would to go with either Nvidia and buy one card or Crossfire 2 Radeon cards, one to handle the rendering of the game so on so forth and the other to simulate physics and what not! I'm not sure how to do this but I know there is a thread on Tomshardware somewhere.


It, uhm, what? No. It doesn't work that way.

You could use an Nvidia card to process Physx, yes, but that's a horrible waste of money to get a small improvement in 12 games.

Crossfire works completely differently, and makes each card render alternate frames - not at all what you're describing.
a c 271 U Graphics card
a c 171 Î Nvidia
March 5, 2013 4:57:44 PM

Djsp8ey said:
Thanks, I guess it's just competition that both nVidia and ATI could become a brilliant setup if a proper Hybrid system was in place so I understand that they put the blocks in place, kinda wondering if there's a program/way to bypass all those because ATI/AMD sell great cards and cheaply but their downside is Physx and Tessellation. nVidia is a great company too but their cards can be a bit pricey and the upside is you get Physx and it handles Tessellation well. So getting a cheap ATI and cheap nVidia would still be able to compete with both company's at their best cards if used properly.
I wanted to play my games with Physx enabled since I never got to fully experience it. e.g. Mirrors Edge, Fabrics wave in the wind and look real as well as smoke in certain levels and light particles but the thing that kills it is the breaking of glass from Enemies. This plus other games that run Physx look amazing with Physx on so that's kinda why I want to experience Physx for myself than what video's of people setup being able to play it haha

I'm thinking a 660 Ti or save up more but maybe in a years time for a 680? :/ 

It was a guy called Richard Huddy who is directly to blame for you not being able to use PhysX on your ATi card, before he stuck his oar in Nvidia didn't have a problem with letting PhysX be used by ATi users.
a b U Graphics card
a b Î Nvidia
March 5, 2013 4:58:16 PM

Are you asking if you can combine a and you with a NVIDIA card in a multi gpu arrangement.. I'm talking a non dedicated physx card. No you can't, as mouse monkey said. Its near impossible. But you can use a NVIDIA physx card with a amd card as dedicated physx.
March 5, 2013 5:00:12 PM

Murissokah said:
The only working setup with AMD/Nvidia cards I know of is using Lucid Hydra, but it requires a motherboard with that chip. Still, it never works nearly as well as SLI/Crossfire.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/2910

Another bit of advice: I've had 2x6870 crossfire in the past, and it gave me a world of issues, to the point that it was more pratical to leave one of the cards off and only enable crossfire on specific games where it worked.

Considering the 6850 is the fastest of the two cards you have, I can only anticipate your experience with two cards would be even worse.


Well I don't run Crossfire at all since I only have 1 Radeon HD 6850 and my motherboard can only do Crossfire and not SLI.
That being said I've heard of Lucid Hydra but I'm not too sure if I can follow the steps in case I mess up and break a dll file for windows requiring me to re-install windows or something else that corrupts my data on my current HDD.
March 5, 2013 5:02:15 PM

Rockdpm said:
Are you asking if you can combine a and you with a NVIDIA card in a multi gpu arrangement.. I'm talking a non dedicated physx card. No you can't, as mouse monkey said. Its near impossible. But you can use a NVIDIA physx card with a amd card as dedicated physx.


...wait what? D: I was thinking of using my ATI card and using my nVidia card as Dedicated Physx not the other way around D:
March 5, 2013 5:27:28 PM

So in regards to the topic is it possible to have my ATI card run normally with the nVidia card used as dedicated Physx? or is it not possible at all and I have to look into getting a new nVidia Graphics card? :) 
a c 271 U Graphics card
a c 171 Î Nvidia
March 5, 2013 5:29:14 PM

Djsp8ey said:
So in regards to the topic is it possible to have my ATI card run normally with the nVidia card used as dedicated Physx? or is it not possible at all and I have to look into getting a new nVidia Graphics card? :) 

It may be possible but you are going to have to jump through some hoops and it may not work on newer PhysX enabled games.
a b U Graphics card
a b Î Nvidia
March 14, 2013 1:48:57 PM

its possible but not worth the hassle of messing with all the driver conflicts
!