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New build SLI or Crossfire

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
SLI , Crossfire what is the difference? I just bought a Gigabyte MB (GA-890XA-UD3). Do I want two PCI-Ex 512MB crossfire or the more the better?
Or should I break the bank and go SLI? I think I am answering my own question because of the SLI price difference . But I want to set up this board from the bottom up.
OK I am limited, I don't have the Gigabyte Killer (Assasin, or Sniper) board but I have a idea of what I want for the mid-range system.
Also have a Thermaltake M9 V1000 series ready for the install.I beleive I need a 750 watt PS at best .
Really what I want to know is how to outfit this system (graphics cards, power supply,processor, etc.)
This is a graphics card that I am looking at. ATI RADEON X1800 XL 512MB PCI-E DUAL DVI
The plan is to run a Sound Blaster card with front access bay
A couple DVD burner drives. (Blue Ray sometime in the future)
CD burner
Some small storage WD SATA HD (I don't know the reason to go to 1 TB)
Any help or leads on items would be appreciated
post #2 of 12
With current cards the difference is too slim, I guess just pick the features you want. NVIDIA has CUDA, and runs F@H like awesome-sauce. AMD runs Eyefinity out-of-the-box, and BOINC's like awesome-sauce. Start by looking at the Phenom II X6/X4.

Get something more powerful then that X1800
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Little Black Box
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Vostro
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Galaxy S4
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 6600k AsRock Fatal1ty Z170 ITX EVGA GTX 980 SC G. Skill Trident Z 16GB(2x8GB) 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Samsung 830 64GB Samsung 840 Evo 120GB Seagate ST 2TB Seagate ST 500GB 
CoolingOSMonitorMonitor
Corsair H60 Win 10 Pro Planar PX2710MW AOC U2868PQU 
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Rosewill RGB80 Corsair HX850 Corsair Obsidian 250D Logitech M705 
Mouse Pad
XTrac Ripper XL 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core 2 Duo T5670 Dell OEM Intel GMA 950 3Gb DDR2-667 
Hard DriveOSMonitor
WD Scorpio Blue 250Gb Linux Ubuntu 12.10 x64 15.4" Tru-Bright 1280x800 
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Snapdragon 600 MSM8960 Adreno 320 2GB LPDDR 
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post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
The X1800's were going for 35 each.
I need to look at pricing and am new to the boards you described.
post #4 of 12
Crossfire is technology AMD cards use to combine two similar AMD GPU. SLI is technology nVIDIA uses to combine two similar nVIDIA GPU. From a theoretical standpoint, Crossfire scalling with two GPU is better than SLI. But real world application such as games etc, the difference may be not be as appreciable. Apologize if you already have this information.
In my opinion, you can SLI two mid range nVIDIA card such as the GTX 560 or GTX 470. Or you can crossfire two AMD HD 6870 or HD 6950. Or if you are one of those dual GPU haters, you can go with one single GTX 580 or one HD 6970. If those does not fit your budget, there is other selections that will fit your bill. I do not have experience with the card you posted, but I think it is probably not a good selection - unless $60 is all you can afford. For a decent GPU that can keep up with modern games, you need a budget of atleast $150.
On to the specifics of that board, I see it has a 16x PCI-e and a 8X PCI-e. I will have to let someone more knowledgeable on that to speak, but I think you can SLI or crossfire with two mismatched slot like that. I do not know if a single card will give you more benefit over a SLI or crossfire for that kind of setup.
I am guessing you already chose a processor. I am not an expert on AMD processors, but they are all very decent and all rounder.
As for sound, the card seem to have a decent onboard. So I won't sweat on getting a separate sound card unless you are an audiophile. Unless you want the front bay access as you mentioned.
And yes a 750w is all you will need to run most systems unless you SLI two GTX 480 or 580.

EDIT: Since I am not sure how much experience you have in putting a computer, I will assume you have little experience. With that said, can you give a budget for the following and point out which item you already bought?

CPU (do you prefer intel or AMD - if you already bought your motherboard, it will drive this)
Motherboard (depend on your CPU selection)
Graphics card
PSU
Case

After that, we can figure out the rest of the components such as hard drive and disk drives as they are not very expensive.
Edited by Awaz - 3/10/11 at 2:50pm
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Wife's bane
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5-3570K @ 4.5 Ghz Gigabyte Z77 UD3H HIS R9-290 8 GB Samsung Wonder RAM 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Crucial SSD for OS Samsung Spinpoint F3 Asus XSPC water block, 360 radiator, and 720 reservo... 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
GPU cooling - XSPC Razer full GPU blocks Win 7 Home Premium Asus PB278Q 2560 X 1440p ISP Logitech G15 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
NZXT Hale90 V2 NZXT Switch 810 Logitech G500 Steelseries QcK 
Audio
Optical out to Sony receiver; Deftech Monitor 3... 
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post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
The thing is I don't do a lot of gaming but I am interested in the technology and how it will look on dual or tri monitors. Have 2 Samsung 24 now.
I have built a dozen computers and probably worked on twice that many.
But as the building has diminished from 2 or 3 a year, the experience in what works best for a lower budget system is what I am after.
If gaming is so awesome it needs to sell itself to me by way of overall appeal.
I am set on having a front access bay for input /output rca plugs for old turntable an receiver.
I like to have as much of the extras as offered, including TV card. Which is undetermined as well.
Processor pricing looks like like I'll shoot for an AMD quad core black ed.
Thanks for the input
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Still wondering why the board has a mismatch 16X and 8X . Why not just be consistant for the benifit of the consumer?
post #7 of 12
16X/16X will perform NO BETTER then 16X/8X.
The Radeons scale a little better but have more issues.

Both sides have a good GPU just get the one that fits what you are shooting for.
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Samsung 850 EVO 250GB Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7.2K 16MB Cache Prolimatech Megahalem Rev.B (Push/Pull) Windows 7 Home Premium 64 
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Acer X233H Razer BlackWidow Ultimate  OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W XClio Windtunnel 
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1TB Samsung F3  DVD+-RW  Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 60" LG 60PA5500 Plasma 
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Acer X1373WH Projector Corsair CX500 Cooler Master 430 
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i5-2430M Intel HD Graphics  Nvidia 1GB GT 550M (GF116) w/Optimus|DX11|144 ... 6GB DDR3  
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120GB PNY 1311 SSD 500GB 7.2K RPM Windows7 Home Premium 64 17.3" WLED TL 1600 X 900 with 2.0MP HD webcam 
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buildX
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X3Elite (HTPC)
(14 items)
 
Dell XPS L702X
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 930 @ 4.0GHz (24/7) HT/on  Asus P6TD Deluxe Gigabyte 2GB GTX 670 Windforce3X OC  6GB OCZ Gold 1600 (tri-channel) 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7.2K 16MB Cache Prolimatech Megahalem Rev.B (Push/Pull) Windows 7 Home Premium 64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Acer X233H Razer BlackWidow Ultimate  OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W XClio Windtunnel 
MouseMouse Pad
Logitech G502 Proteus Core Tunable  Razer Goliathus 444mm x 355mm - Speed Edition ... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Phenom II 720 X3 BE @ 3.2GHz 24/7 MSi 770-G45 Sapphire Radeon HD 6870  8GB GSkill RipJaw 1333Mhz  
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
1TB Samsung F3  DVD+-RW  Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 60" LG 60PA5500 Plasma 
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Acer X1373WH Projector Corsair CX500 Cooler Master 430 
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i5-2430M Intel HD Graphics  Nvidia 1GB GT 550M (GF116) w/Optimus|DX11|144 ... 6GB DDR3  
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120GB PNY 1311 SSD 500GB 7.2K RPM Windows7 Home Premium 64 17.3" WLED TL 1600 X 900 with 2.0MP HD webcam 
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post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the direction. Hey I still need to get a cheap copy of W7 pro. ( many things to buy)
BTW for anyone interested I am running W7 Enterprise 90 day trial and I like it allot.
one neat thing is I can turn the host into a "HotSpot' with Connectivity software. pretty neat.
post #9 of 12
You can get the OEM version of Windows7 64bit Premium for $90-$109 and as long as you format the partition the OS is on you can re-install it on other mobo's and HD's.

I've had it as an OS on my AM3 build, X58 build with a 320GB HD, now onto my SSD.
buildX
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X3Elite (HTPC)
(14 items)
 
Dell XPS L702X
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 930 @ 4.0GHz (24/7) HT/on  Asus P6TD Deluxe Gigabyte 2GB GTX 670 Windforce3X OC  6GB OCZ Gold 1600 (tri-channel) 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7.2K 16MB Cache Prolimatech Megahalem Rev.B (Push/Pull) Windows 7 Home Premium 64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Acer X233H Razer BlackWidow Ultimate  OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W XClio Windtunnel 
MouseMouse Pad
Logitech G502 Proteus Core Tunable  Razer Goliathus 444mm x 355mm - Speed Edition ... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Phenom II 720 X3 BE @ 3.2GHz 24/7 MSi 770-G45 Sapphire Radeon HD 6870  8GB GSkill RipJaw 1333Mhz  
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
1TB Samsung F3  DVD+-RW  Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 60" LG 60PA5500 Plasma 
MonitorPowerCase
Acer X1373WH Projector Corsair CX500 Cooler Master 430 
CPUGraphicsGraphicsRAM
i5-2430M Intel HD Graphics  Nvidia 1GB GT 550M (GF116) w/Optimus|DX11|144 ... 6GB DDR3  
Hard DriveHard DriveOSMonitor
120GB PNY 1311 SSD 500GB 7.2K RPM Windows7 Home Premium 64 17.3" WLED TL 1600 X 900 with 2.0MP HD webcam 
KeyboardCaseAudio
Backlit Keyboard Elemental Silver Aluminum JBL 2.1 W/ Built-in Subwoofer 
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buildX
(16 items)
 
X3Elite (HTPC)
(14 items)
 
Dell XPS L702X
(11 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 930 @ 4.0GHz (24/7) HT/on  Asus P6TD Deluxe Gigabyte 2GB GTX 670 Windforce3X OC  6GB OCZ Gold 1600 (tri-channel) 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7.2K 16MB Cache Prolimatech Megahalem Rev.B (Push/Pull) Windows 7 Home Premium 64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Acer X233H Razer BlackWidow Ultimate  OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W XClio Windtunnel 
MouseMouse Pad
Logitech G502 Proteus Core Tunable  Razer Goliathus 444mm x 355mm - Speed Edition ... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Phenom II 720 X3 BE @ 3.2GHz 24/7 MSi 770-G45 Sapphire Radeon HD 6870  8GB GSkill RipJaw 1333Mhz  
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
1TB Samsung F3  DVD+-RW  Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 60" LG 60PA5500 Plasma 
MonitorPowerCase
Acer X1373WH Projector Corsair CX500 Cooler Master 430 
CPUGraphicsGraphicsRAM
i5-2430M Intel HD Graphics  Nvidia 1GB GT 550M (GF116) w/Optimus|DX11|144 ... 6GB DDR3  
Hard DriveHard DriveOSMonitor
120GB PNY 1311 SSD 500GB 7.2K RPM Windows7 Home Premium 64 17.3" WLED TL 1600 X 900 with 2.0MP HD webcam 
KeyboardCaseAudio
Backlit Keyboard Elemental Silver Aluminum JBL 2.1 W/ Built-in Subwoofer 
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post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
So are you saying that this operating system can run on 3 seperate computers? Or is it that youv'e installed it 3X's?
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