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Does SLI limit overclocking ability?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Sorry if this issue has been posted before, I want to know if having my 2 460s in sli is going to limit their maximum possible Overclock. I've set the voltages to the max allowed for the triple overvoltage as advertised by msi, and they sit nicely at 900, however I got a bit ahead of myself and wacked them up to 950, 10 seconds into furmark and crash, driver reset, then couldn't detect hardware, then following another restart everything was back to normal. Now does this mean that one of the cards simply can't run at 950, or both, or is this typical of overclocking in sli. Any info much appreciated.
    
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post #2 of 22
Im sure that with SLI both cards have to be clocked the same, Meaning the lowest clocked card has to be the setting for both of them.

If one goes to 950 but the other to 900 they both have to be 900. Im pretty sure.

So to answer your questions, Most likely one of the cards cant do 950.
   
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post #3 of 22
Rian is correct in their explanation. You are getting crashes because one of the cards is incapable of running stably at 950 MHz. You have to find a sweet spot for both cards in order for them to be collectively stable for SLI.
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post #4 of 22
Yea to above,
this sucks because if you get a really good OCer for a card that say can hit 1k core (eg. GTX 460), but another one which is badly binned which can only hit say 825 core, you would have to set both of them at 825 core instead of 1k core for both
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post #5 of 22
Thread Starter 
Yea I figured that was the case. I'm more than happy with 900 I mean there benchmarking through the roof just hoped I could have hit a little closer to the 1GHz Mark as advertised but sure.........it's all good. Another slightly annoying issue is that afterburner won't show me what voltage the cores are running, just that it's +100mv. What's that mean lol. Is it safe to leave the voltages all turned up to what afterburner allows? The temps are completely fine
    
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post #6 of 22
Thread Starter 
I know they are only increased by a small-ish amount since afterburner is tailored to the hawks being msi, as my 5850 would let me push the vcore right up to near 1.4 If I wanted. So are the maxes ive set within safety margins? Another hawk owner would best know what I mean
    
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post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Juliancahillane View Post
Yea I figured that was the case. I'm more than happy with 900 I mean there benchmarking through the roof just hoped I could have hit a little closer to the 1GHz Mark as advertised but sure.........it's all good. Another slightly annoying issue is that afterburner won't show me what voltage the cores are running, just that it's +100mv. What's that mean lol. Is it safe to leave the voltages all turned up to what afterburner allows? The temps are completely fine
What version of AB are you currently using? I had problems on mine as well and had to hunt down version 1.6.1 in order to change the voltage and for it to display properly. I think people have been having some decent luck with the current Beta version for the 5xx series so I'd try that. Should work just fine with the 4xx series now.

In regard to the voltage and HAWKS I'm really not sure what the max safe voltage is so another owner would have to chime in.
Edited by Lampen - 12/26/10 at 5:41am
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post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
I think it's version 2. I had 1.61 before for my 5850 also. I would just like to know if the max voltage values allowed in afterburner are safe for 24/7 use. Vcore is +100mv, pll is around +30mv and memory is something in between. It doesn't show what they are in total so does anyone know? It's advertised as being able to hit 1GHz using maximum values in afterburner, so I assume they are safe. Is it possible that my cards maybe need slightly more voltage to hit the 1ghz mark? Is it advisable? Anyone know of a good link where these questions can be answered? Cheers for the input guys
    
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post #9 of 22
Max limits in ab are safe only if your temps are ok,ie:not over 85c.
The vrm area gets very hot even with a cool core temp,its what causes most high clock crashes with these cards and added volts.

Since all cards start with different vids and vid +100mv= 3d voltage (i'v had 1.01v-1.08vid cards)theres no true answer,i use a dmm to read voltage its the only way.

good luck with the 1g thing but nah it wont happen unless you add 1.21+V and have the card on chilled water or better.
post #10 of 22
All you have to do is fire up a 3d application, then look at the graphs (or use the onscreen display feature) to see what voltage they're actually running at.

And SLI does not 'inherently' limit cards overclocking ability, but of course both cards must be capable of running the clocks you've set them to. You don't HAVE to set them to the same clocks though ... if one card can run at 1K and one can run at 900MHz, you could set them that way if you wanted to using AB by turning off the 'sync similar cards' feature. In my experience it wouldn't result in any better performance than one would see at 900/900, but I haven't tested every game, every card, every driver so I won't say it's universal ... but I suspect that it is

Also, since the top card is going to run a bit hotter than it would if there was no card below it, there's also a small chance you could be slightly limited due to increased heat ... but with 460's, since they run pretty cool, this phenomenon is unlikely to result in any noticeable compromise needing to be made to account for it ... nothing that a small bump in fan speed shouldn't solve.

Lastly, if one's PSU were not really strong enough for running two cards, it's possible that SLI could limit one's max OC'ing ability, for fairly obvious reasons.
Edited by brettjv - 12/26/10 at 8:47am
    
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