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P67, X58, And NF200: The Best Platform For CrossFire And SLI

SLI Platform Performance: Crysis

Crysis is a fun benchmark because it’s so frequently bottlenecked by so many different parts of a system. The Core i7-2600K takes the high mark at our lowest test setting, while the addition of 4x AA is required to make the three-way SLI configuration stand out. Bottlenecked by its CPU, even the addition of AA isn’t enough to give the three-way SLI an advantage over two-way SLI on the X58 platform, yet.

Increasing our Crysis test resolution to 1920x1080 gives us much more to discuss. First of all, we notice the P67 motherboards leading at all three resolutions. But the NF200’s only advantage is that it enables three-way SLI with that same CPU. The third cards hurts X58-based system performance at 1920x1080 without AA, likely due to the extra system overhead of a third card, while the addition of AA puts it ahead by pulling down its two-way configuration.

The Core i7-2600K continues its lead at 2560x1600, its P67 platform needing the NF200 to even enable three-way SLI. Remember that both CPUs are clocked to 4 GHz for all tests, so CPU performance difference are purely related to architecture.

  • jsowoc
    Very nice, thorough analysis. It is articles like these that keep me reading Tom's Hardware.
    Reply
  • aznguy0028
    Great job on this article toms. Here's another article with X58 vs 1155. Using the 990x and 2500/2600k

    http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core-i7-2600k-990x.html

    same conclusions. the S.B slows the 1366 out of the water when it comes to gaming, good read too :)



    Reply
  • jprahman
    LGA1366 is officially dead, at least for gaming. Ever since Sandy Bridge was released (honestly ever since LGA1156) the only justification for people buying LGA1366 systems was the notion that somehow LGA1155 (or LGA1156) would "bottleneck" SLI or Crossfire, which this clearly shows to be false. Only point for LGA1366 now is for workstation builds which need 6 cores or for $3000+ bragging rights builds with quad-SLI/quad-Crossfire. Even then, anyone in the market for such systems know that LGA2011 is still going to come out later this year and will want to wait for that, instead of buying into LGA1366.
    Reply
  • amk09
    There will be an astronomical number of people who will butthurt after seeing the conclusion.
    Reply
  • gracefully
    Part 4 should be triple monitor, triple GPU scaling test. Let's see what happens when the bottleneck is returned to the GPU. Then we can raise the clocks of the processors to lessen the chance of CPU bottlenecking.
    Reply
  • BarackMcBush
    With the biggest difference being 10% and the average only being 2% , I hardly see "LGA1366 is officially dead, at least for gaming." This is a great article but LGA1366 is still a Very Fast Platform.
    Reply
  • BarackMcBush
    With the biggest difference being 10% and the average only being 2% , I hardly see "LGA1366 is officially dead, at least for gaming." This is a great article but LGA1366 is still a Very Fast Platform.
    Reply
  • BarackMcBush
    P67 definitely wins on Price Performance , You can get a 2600k ,a nice Motherboard and Ram for the same price as just the i7 990x cpu!
    Reply
  • rolli59
    Great article but I come to a different conclusion. If your plan is to build a rig with 1 or 2 GPU's, then there is no reason to spend extra money on a NF200 equipped board, the performance difference between the 2 cards at x16/x16 and x8/x8 is next to nothing. If you are going with 3 GPU setup is when the NF200 comes in and is worth the expense.
    Reply
  • andrewcutter
    thank you for the review. however i do think that you made a decision without taking into account all situations. it is clear that for one monitor what you said is true. however will you guys be doing the same tests on a multi monitor setup of say 3 1200 monitors, crank settings high to m put these dual cards on sever stress and then see if the same holds true. i feel this is a major part that you haven't looked at. if you are going to do this then i take back my word and will wait eagerly for that article. In case you are not planning to , lease consider doing it.
    Reply