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Stressing out. Would like some Advice on GPU Combo

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
Howdy. I was running a single 6950 2gb for the past two years or so, enjoying it all until Borderlands 2 and more recent games were released. My GPU wasn't powerful enough for max settings. So, I sold it and decided to buy Crossfire 7950 3gb from Sapphire, the 850mhz standard edition. Last night, I won a contest at the local PC shop and got a free 6970 2gb. Thus, the dilemma. Laughing hard, the day after I pay $620 for Dual 7950s, I win a free 6970 rofl >.>


Should I just sell the spare 6970 and stick with the crossfire 7950? I run an i7 rig on a single 50 inch monitor. I would like to run at the highest res possible. I got a chance to see Borderlands 2 on the higher resolutions and I almost cried at how beautiful it was. My 6950 2gb couldn't handle everything maxed out. I am not sure the 6970 can either. But, the crossfire 7950s can. My primary concern is the Crossfire setup should be able to run the higher resolutions with excellent FPS, but how does the Physx option work into this, I mean, do I NEED to have a third card dedicated for PhysX if I am running crossfire 7950s. And, if that is the case, can the 6970 act as the Dedicated Physx card if I am also running Crosfire 7950s. After many hours of research I was unable to pinpoint anyone else attempting this same scenario.

-Can I activate PhysX with just the Crossfire 7950 setup?
-If not, can I use the spare 6970 as the dedicated Physx Card for games like Borderlands 2, Crysis 3, Tomb Raider, ect ect.?
-Would I have to open the case and remove the Crossfire bridge if I cannot run Physx with Crossfire 7950s only? Then, designate the second 7950 as the Physx card?
-Can the 7950s run in Crossfire, and then the 6970 be designated as the Physx card only?



Any help is appreciated. Is this a waste of time to investigate?
Edited by Portal - 3/15/13 at 1:41pm
post #2 of 37
I'm afraid PhysX is an nVidia-only feature, meaning only nVidia GPUs can accelerate it in hardware. If you activate it with only AMD graphics cards installed, it'll do the PhysX work on the CPU instead of on a GPU, which will usually slow things down and won't be as good quality-wise as a GPU-rendered PhysX setup.
Edited by Menty - 3/15/13 at 1:44pm
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post #3 of 37
PhysX is owned by Nvidia. Im not 100% on this, but i don't think you can enable physx on amd gpu's. You can make your cpu run it though.....And with the crossfire 7970s you should be doing pretty good even without phsx anyways. I'd sell that 6970 and dump the cash back into your next upgrade biggrin.gif
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post #4 of 37
Thread Starter 
There apparently are simple tweaks to allow the ATI cards to run the Physx options for Borderlands 2. I am not sure if any other games can, but I am positive BL2 can. There are a ton of videos and guides on Youtube that show it working nicely. I am fine with the Physx running on the CPU, my setup should be more than sufficient for it.

Still though, I would much rather salvage this 6970 somehow. For BL2 gameplay, I am not sure which route is better.
1. Crossfire 7950s + 6970 acting as the Dedicated Physics card ( This is possible, apparently )
2. One 7950 handling the Physx, one for standard.
3. Crossfire 7950s, CPU handling Physx

If option 2 or 3 is the best, the 6970 can would be sold. * Headache *
post #5 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Portal View Post

There apparently are simple tweaks to allow the ATI cards to run the Physx options for Borderlands 2. I am not sure if any other games can, but I am positive BL2 can. There are a ton of videos and guides on Youtube that show it working nicely. I am fine with the Physx running on the CPU, my setup should be more than sufficient for it.

Still though, I would much rather salvage this 6970 somehow. For BL2 gameplay, I am not sure which route is better.
1. Crossfire 7950s + 6970 acting as the Dedicated Physics card ( This is possible, apparently )
2. One 7950 handling the Physx, one for standard.
3. Crossfire 7950s, CPU handling Physx

If option 2 or 3 is the best, the 6970 can would be sold. * Headache *
No matter what CPU you have it will lower your FPS massively (100%+ drop), as far as I know you can only run PhysX on an Nvidia card otherwise it's done by the CPU. You can run 'hybrid PhysX' which is when you have an AMD card handling the graphics and an Nvidia card doing the PhysX.

Just looked up a benchmark, with Borderlands 2 on max graphics at 1080p these are the results with a 7970:
PhysX on low (basically off) - Average 102.3 fps
PhysX on highest - Average 44.9 fps
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post #6 of 37
If you could link some proof I'd appreciate it, as I've never heard of GPU-accelerated PhysX on an AMD card before, as PhysX is owned by nVidia. I'm 99% certain that any PhysX done on an AMD-GPU rig would be done on the CPU alone.
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post #7 of 37
To have a ATI card and run PhysX you need a secondary nVidia card. it doesn't have to be a powerful one but it does need to be nVidia


If you are wondering about having a main ATI card and a secondary PhysX card try this guide:
http://www.overclock.net/t/987018/how-to-use-nvidia-as-a-physx-card-with-amd-ati-graphics-card-100-works-guaranteed/0_20
Edited by Z4XC - 3/15/13 at 1:57pm
post #8 of 37
Thread Starter 
I purchased two 7950s from Newegg which have not arrived yet. So, I can return one of them and grab an Nvidia card can't I ? Would that be wiser than running the 7950s in crossfire? 40fps on high res for BL2 is excellent and more than sufficient while the cpu handles Physx. I can live with that. But, I fear that in months or years to come the cpu will not be nearly powerful enough to handle Physx. Eh. Worst case, I can return both and get Nividia cards instead. I have no bias for either, I just want the best looking experience I can get for $620 tongue.gif

I don't have any definitive proof that it is possible, just that some people claimed it was possible. The guide for that is this. There are a few threads on other forums that confirm this works.

Using an AMD card but you want that little extra detail?
How to enable PhysX on AMD.
1) go to; C:\Users\username\Documents\My Games\Borderlands 2\WillowGame\Config
2) Open the WillowEngine.ini
3) Press CTRL+F and search for PhysXLevel
4) Enter a number between 0 - 2. 2 means "high", 1 means "medium", 0 means "off".
Problem solved, MUHAHA - Gogogo AMD users, unleach your power! biggrin.gif
Edited by Portal - 3/15/13 at 2:01pm
post #9 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Menty View Post

If you could link some proof I'd appreciate it, as I've never heard of GPU-accelerated PhysX on an AMD card before, as PhysX is owned by nVidia. I'm 99% certain that any PhysX done on an AMD-GPU rig would be done on the CPU alone.
I believe PhysX features are desabled unless you have nVidia
post #10 of 37
Sell that 6970 or trade it for a GTX5XX if you really want physx..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Menty View Post

If you could link some proof I'd appreciate it, as I've never heard of GPU-accelerated PhysX on an AMD card before, as PhysX is owned by nVidia. I'm 99% certain that any PhysX done on an AMD-GPU rig would be done on the CPU alone.

It's possible, but not worth the hassle..
Quote:
Originally Posted by Portal View Post

Using an AMD card but you want that little extra detail?
How to enable PhysX on AMD.
1) go to; C:\Users\username\Documents\My Games\Borderlands 2\WillowGame\Config
2) Open the WillowEngine.ini
3) Press CTRL+F and search for PhysXLevel
4) Enter a number between 0 - 2. 2 means "high", 1 means "medium", 0 means "off".
Problem solved, MUHAHA - Gogogo AMD users, unleach your power! biggrin.gif

That's not really it..
Edited by kpriess - 3/15/13 at 2:00pm
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