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Any AMD SLI Users? + GTX 580 Advice

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Just wondering if anyone running an SLI setup with AMD (cpu and mobo of course) without any problems can chime in and direct me on what they have. I've been wanting to go SLI but I keep reading about issues with the available AMD SLI mobo's not performing and crapping out but at the same time I hear some people have no issues. The lack of available SLI boards don't help either. I almost jumped the gun on buying two 560's the but I held back today so I can post up a topic here.

But on the other hand, I am still debating on a single card solution.

I am debating on a Palit NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 3GB and also the new GTX 590's. I have two 23'' Acer G235H monitors (just using one for now, will pair them up once I figure out my GPU solution). I occasionally game on my 42'' lcd as well. Any advice on what would benefit me more? I am leaning towards the 580 but the 590 is tempting as well.



Other notes:
- 1920x180 resolution
- Will be switching to the AMD Bulldozer when it releases from my current X4 965 black... if the new AM3+ mobo's will even support SLI >_<
- Battlefield 3 is driving my urge to upgrade (:
-


Edited by Ryyy - 4/8/11 at 8:29pm
post #2 of 12
You need hax that I'm not sure I really understand to get SLI to work on AMD, I would just go 580, but why get the 3GB one?
    
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post #3 of 12
There is talk of the 990FX(3way) and 990X(2way) nforce chips hitting the AM3+ platform. I would not hold my breath,however, because of the massive flop the 980 series chip-set was. Only 2 vendors picked up the 980 and I would think only a few vendors would be willing to implement the new ones seeing how... not so well these turned out.

Source

I have the MSI nf980 with 2 GTX465's and while it is rocking awesome, my NB ran hot with just one GPU and now I have to keep a case fan on it at all times or will get very glitchy in games and bsod. Now folding is flipping awesome. I don't fold all the time, but when I do I can usually run 1670ns. I am always using my system, so I only finish a few packages a week and it is like a jet turbine when both cards are folding, and who can sleep to that.

The only current gen AMD/SLI Boards out right now all share the weaknesses of the NFchip, low overclocking potential, and poor memory management, plus none of the motherboards where really designed for the 145w monster hexcores. There are plenty of stories about the Msi boards burning up under the stress of these chips. I am not sure how the Asus boards fair, but from what I have read on here, they aren't getting too much better of a deal.

I would think all vendors would make either or chipset for their enthusiast boards that could be changed at the bios level, but I guess if Xbox games worked in a PS3 or vice versa, sales would be down for both companies, and nothing is worth doing these days if it wont sale like crazy.
Edited by cook - 4/8/11 at 8:34pm
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post #4 of 12
Also, if you can wait, the 990 fx boards will have true SLI support.

Edit: Beat me to it
post #5 of 12
Wait a few weeks, EVGA is doing a 3GB 580, might as well do a lifetime warranty.

As for SLI on AMD boards, there's a stickied thread about the SLI hack, just about any motherboard with two pciex16 slots can do SLI. Also, the 3 GB 580 is a significantly better deal when you consider that there's an obvious upgrade path there, where SLI 560s has nothing available. I mean, just look at 480s, $500 12 months ago, going for $220 after rebate.

That's something else to consider, Fry's has Galaxy 480s for $300 with a $80 MIR, so getting those and adding AXPs will crush a single 580. But, a 580 is ample performance atm and the 3GB might come in handy.

So, real choice should be 2x 480s w/ AXPs (~$270 each when it's all said and done) or 1 3GB 580.
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post #6 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by cook View Post
There is talk of the 990FX(3way) and 990X(2way) nforce chips hitting the AM3+ platform. I would not hold my breath,however, because of the massive flop the 980 series chip-set was. Only 2 vendors picked up the 980 and I would think only a few vendors would be willing to implement the new ones seeing how... not so well these turned out.

Source
You are misunderstanding that source. The 990FX and 990X are NOT nforce chips like the 980 chipset that is on only 2 boards. Those are AMD chipsets. Nvidia is going to allow (license) SLI to AMD chipsets just like they do for Intel. They are not making anymore nforce chipsets.

I expect good boards like the ASUS Crosshair V Formula 990FX board will have native SLI.
Edited by JCPUser - 4/8/11 at 8:43pm
post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by JCPUser View Post
You are misunderstanding that source. The 990FX and 990X are NOT nforce chips like the 980 chipset that is on only 2 boards. Those are AMD chipsets. Nvidia is going to allow (license) SLI to AMD chipsets just like they do for Intel. They are not making anymore nforce chipsets.

I expect good boards like the ASUS Chrosshair V Formula 990FX board will have native SLI.
That would be great, because right now I sense a bit of finger pointing between AMD and Nvidia at why the current chips are not doing so hot. If AMD does the dev work It would probably have great potential.

It still seems silly to me that a choice has to be made at the the mother board level between SLI and Crossfire, Why not just call it GPU Scaling or stacking or some catchy name and drop the GPU specific chipsets since we can clearly run a single card on opposite chip-sets, why not doubles?
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post #8 of 12
Don't game on 2 monitors its terrible (think about where the bezel is going), not sure if nVidia can even do that, its either 1 or 3 for gaming. Multi-monitor gaming requires two cards, with the exception of the GTX 590. However, the GTX 580 (while costing more) actually runs better at stock SLI, and is generally a good overclocker. I run both my cards with a 25% GPU increase over stock, and a 15% increase on memory speeds. The GTX 590 is a reliable way to play, very little hassle, and offers good enough performance, but at the moment it has little wiggle room for overclocking due to a driver locking down the voltage regulation.

On a single monitor of around 1920x1080 or 1920x1200, the standard 1.5GB GTX 580 would be all you need as far as VRAM goes, unless you just want to be more future ready which is understandable.

SLI Hack works exactly the same as an SLI Licensed board, without paying for the SLI premium. The only difference is the CPU's performance, as Intel are generally stronger in synthetic benchmarks and multi-GPU setups.

Apart from that, there is no difference. I have successfully installed 2x GTX 580s on a 1100T + Crosshair IV Extreme system. It performed quite on par, and I believe I still hold the 18th place spot on Unigine 2.1 benchmarks. The only AMD platform on the list.

EVGA is also releasing a 3GB model of the GTX 580 within a week or two, according to Jacob from EVGA (announced today.)
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post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RagingCain View Post
Don't game on 2 monitors its terrible (think about where the bezel is going), not sure if nVidia can even do that, its either 1 or 3 for gaming. Multi-monitor gaming requires two cards, with the exception of the GTX 590. However, the GTX 580 (while costing more) actually runs better at stock SLI, and is generally a good overclocker. I run both my cards with a 25% GPU increase over stock, and a 15% increase on memory speeds. The GTX 590 is a reliable way to play, very little hassle, and offers good enough performance, but at the moment it has little wiggle room for overclocking due to a driver locking down the voltage regulation.

On a single monitor of around 1920x1080 or 1920x1200, the standard 1.5GB GTX 580 would be all you need as far as VRAM goes, unless you just want to be more future ready which is understandable.

SLI Hack works exactly the same as an SLI Licensed board, without paying for the SLI premium. The only difference is the CPU's performance, as Intel are generally stronger in synthetic benchmarks and multi-GPU setups.

Apart from that, there is no difference. I have successfully installed 2x GTX 580s on a 1100T + Crosshair IV Extreme system. It performed quite on par, and I believe I still hold the 18th place spot on Unigine 2.1 benchmarks. The only AMD platform on the list.

EVGA is also releasing a 3GB model of the GTX 580 within a week or two, according to Jacob from EVGA (announced today.)
Thank you for your post, that helped me out.

As for the SLI Hack, how complicated is this? I've heard this mentioned before but I'm not too inclined to pursue SLI this way. Is there a noticeable difference from running a, I guess you can say, purposed SLI compared to going through hacking Crossfire?
post #10 of 12
I run AMD + nVidia, baring that it has issues, what doesn't? Does it play well and bench well? Sure, for the cost and what I have in it. nForce could be better, but as it appears it seems to have been let go of, these things happen. Are the MSI boards kinda crummy? Maybe with 5-10% of any other board I suppose when it comes to maximal possible OC' assuming using the same cpu on a different board... the vrm's could be better... depends on how you cool it off.

Theres pluses and minuses with everything, and that being said, I am excited to see some of the newer mobo's for BD, and will more than likely stick it out with AMD + Green for years to come... do I expect problems, yes, of course I do, there are always are. Theres plenty of ways to skin a cat, and it has been said before, but really begs to be said again, why not underclock ram and ratchet up timings if high timings are problematic? why worry with a hexacore when it has been shown to not OC well go gaming? Know what you want to accomplish and the budget your working with, the rest will work itself out.
 
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