HydraLogix Vs. SLI And CrossFire: MSI's P55A Fuzion Tested

Mid-Priced Graphics Cards: Radeon HD 5850 And GeForce GTX 460

While Tom’s Hardware’s has several AMD Radeon HD 5850 graphics cards distributed among its editors, this lab had only one. MSI heard our call for help and decided this would be a great chance for us to get a little face time with its recently-released R5850 Twin Frozr II.

MSI ditches the second dual-link DVI found on AMD's reference design, opening up the second slot panel for additional ventilation. Users who want to tie two monitors to a single card have the choice of HDMI or DisplayPort, though the company's triple-display capability requires monitors that support all three technologies. A VGA adapter is also included.

While this editor loves MSI’s improved VRM and reduced-noise cooling fans, this particular model is unlikely to ever be used in his own system. That’s because MSI extended its length by 0.7” over the standard card (to 10.2”), while leaving the power connectors on its end, complicating installation into mid-sized cases that often support a maximum card length of 10.5”.

Originally supplied for our GTX 460 SLI article and later reviewed in an overclocked card comparison, Sparkle’s GeForce GTX 460s were retained specifically for articles such as this. The cards’ 700 MHz GPU clock isn’t standard by Nvidia's specification, but the majority of competing products are overclocked even farther.

Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.
  • tacoslave
    Still seems to buggy to me but at least they're still working on it right?
  • duk3
    Looks good on the 1st 2 games and synthetics.
    I hope Lucid gets all the issues worked out.
  • anacandor
    So basically it's just a universal CF/SLI connecter built into the motherboard? Seems odd that it's taken this long to be developed, but great nonetheless :)
  • Darkerson
    Looks like it has some promise, if they can further work the kinks out. Something to keep an eye on in the future.
  • ruffopurititiwang
    The 6870 scales better in cfx than that 5850. Why not test that?
  • punnar
    I can see it as a standard in the future. I think I will buy a board with Hydralogix on my next build.
  • Yargnit
    It would have been nice to see how well this works with two differing AMD/ATI cards and two Nvidia cards. For instance someone has a GTX260 and wants to add a GTX460, or someone with a AMD5850 who wants to pick up a new 6870 (damn numbering change) to go with it.

    Also comparing performance pairing two cards from the same generation (say GTX 460 + GTX 470) vs differing generations. (GTX 260 + GTX460)

    Lastly what affect would pairing a two cards with varying amounts of memory have? (two regular versions of a card vs 1 reg + 1 dbl memory vs 2 dbl memory) Since it isn't clear from what I've read if both cards would be limited to lowest memory level or not.

    Interesting tech for sure
  • sudeshc
    this should become a standard, allowing us to enjoy features from both manufacturers. I would also be prepared to pay few extra bucks for this as well.
  • Maziar
    Overall,Lucid is a great idea of mixing different cards but it still needs quite a lot of work with drivers.
  • Yargnit
    Ah, thank you. It was posted before I was frequently following the site, I'll give it a look.