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Power Supplies and Software ATi Crossfire help and discussion

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
So I've wanted to test out software crossfire for a while, and since newegg had that sale on the HIS 1GB 4670 for $65 with free shipping I went ahead and grabbed one to pair with the one I already had. I was deeply disappointed when i got them setup. I have a theory as to why, and wondered if anyone else had thought of or run into this and maybe tested it for verification?

So here's what I think is happening: I have a 520 Watt Seasonic S12II power supply, it has Two, 20 amp 12volt rails. I think my crossfire setup is being starved! They both run off of the motherboard, no auxiliary power connectors, therefore if the motherboard only runs on One of those two 12volt rails... how could 20 amps be enough for an Intel Q8400 Quad core, ASUS P5Q Pro Motherboard, AND Two 4670s?

So basically I want to know if my assumption that the motherboard only uses one 12volt rail is correct? And has anyone run into this problem as well?

I have run into a very similar problem, with a single 4670 running with a 430 Watt Antec earthwatts PSU. I believe the same cause for the single card running well below what it should is the cause of my crossfire setup not running the way it should: Not enough amps!

Also, if the motherboard only uses one rail, is there any way to modify the 24pin connector to use both of them? xD
Edited by bullet937 - 1/24/11 at 3:48pm
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post #2 of 29
The Seasonic S12II 520 lists two 12v rails, but actually has no OCP Circuits to separate the individual rails. Thus making it a single rail unit with a 40 Amp 12v rail.

Though two ~60w cards drawing power from just the motherboard's 24pin connector could be a problem.

Are you actually experiencing a problem?
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post #3 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tator Tot View Post
The Seasonic S12II 520 lists two 12v rails, but actually has no OCP Circuits to separate the individual rails. Thus making it a single rail unit with a 40 Amp 12v rail.

Though two ~60w cards drawing power from just the motherboard's 24pin connector could be a problem.

Are you actually experiencing a problem?
Considering that when both the cards are in my motherboard they actually run slower than a single card, yea that's a problem lol. And I'm not too sure about there not being two rails... I can run my GTS 250 on a different rail and get more performance as oppose to the other rail "I assume it's the one powering the motherboard." How could i get more power from another rail if they weren't separate?
Edited by bullet937 - 1/24/11 at 3:50pm
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post #4 of 29
How are they running slower? Are you stressing them at all?

The cards do downclock in a normal environment. Because it's a power save feature.
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post #5 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tator Tot View Post
How are they running slower? Are you stressing them at all?

The cards do downclock in a normal environment. Because it's a power save feature.
No, I'm not referring to the power saving feature. I'm talking game performance. I maybe get 55-60FPS in a game with a single card and mid 40s with both of them "Exact same settings".
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post #6 of 29
That's more because software Crossfire is inefficient and basically crap.

Has absolutely nothing to do with your PSU. At all.
post #7 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus2129 View Post
That's more because software Crossfire is inefficient and basically crap.

Has absolutely nothing to do with your PSU. At all.
I don't believe that at all. I've seen people run software crossfire before and get significantly more performance than I am, certainly not Less than they where getting with a single card!

Also, with the tests I ran using a 430Watt PSU and getting less performance on a single card as appose to my 520Watt PSU, finding out that if the card doesn't get enough power, it simply becomes starved and wont perform... I'm highly inclined to think that it's the same problem occurring again.
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post #8 of 29
It's a common myth, but cards don't get "power starved". Either they get a voltage that their VRMs can convert to the required voltage, or they stop working. There's no gray area.
post #9 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus2129 View Post
It's a common myth, but cards don't get "power starved". Either they get a voltage that their VRMs can convert to the required voltage, or they stop working. There's no gray area.
Aah, but you are wrong about that. I have proved it personally, seen the results with my own two eyes. I don't know if it is every card granted, but i do know 100% certain that a 4670 will perform about 30-40% slower "at least with the PSU I had" than it should... and Does with more power.
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post #10 of 29
I'd like to know exactly what equipment you used and what exactly you did.

I've gotta go to a lab soon, so I won't be able to respond for a couple hours, but I want to know exactly what you claim to have done when I get back.
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