Adding Video Cards

Nvidia GEFORCE
July 18, 2010 at 10:26:09
Specs: Microsoft Windows XP Professional, 2.399 GHz / 1023 MB
I'm interested in adding more video cards to my computer. And right now I'm thinking of video cards similar to RAM, more you add them, faster they work. But will they really work faster, would they make any benefit, if I will install different kinds of video cards at same time (PCI, PCI-E, AGP). Or may be the only one which will help me, is the one that is connected to monitor and rest won't do anything?

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#1
July 18, 2010 at 10:38:24
You're way off track. You don't need extra video cards and you can't install different types and use them together anyhow. First post your system specs and what you have now.

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#2
July 18, 2010 at 10:53:52
your talking about sli and crossfire. The advantage isn't that big, that's why it's recommended to buy one good v-card. Sometimes the difference can be 5fps. It is possible to run different pci e cards eg. ATi Hd 5750 & Nvidia 250 gts. It's not possible to run agp card and pci e or pci v-card @ the same time.

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#3
July 18, 2010 at 11:13:59
"And right now I'm thinking of video cards similar to RAM, more you add them, faster they work."

Only with NVIDIA SLI and ATI CrossFire ready motherboards. And you'd want a fast CPU, because it takes additional processor power to synchronize the GPUs.

"But will they really work faster, would they make any benefit, if I will install different kinds of video cards at same time (PCI, PCI-E, AGP)."

You can install a PCI card alongside a PCI-E or AGP card, but you'd only gain monitor outputs, not performance. To improve performance with SLI/CrossFire, you need two identical PCI-E cards.

@ kuwese:
"your talking about sli and crossfire. The advantage isn't that big"

Maybe a few years ago, but video drivers have improved. Now, SLI/Crossfire can nearly double performance with a fast enough processor.
GTX 460 SLI Scaling

HTPC | Pentium M @ 2.82GHz, 2MB L2) | 4GB | 1.0TB | Radeon HD5750
Blu-Ray | Win7 Pro | HDMI out to Onkyo TX-SR707


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Related Solutions

#4
July 18, 2010 at 11:25:43
So, I can install two identical PCI-E cards at same time, ok. Can I do same thing with PCI, to install two identical cards at same time?

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#5
July 18, 2010 at 11:39:10
No, psi-e and pci are two different things. Only pci-e can work in crossfire or sli if your motherboard supports it and if you have a powerful enough processor ond power supply. Why don't you post your system specs so we don't have to go round and round and guess.

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#6
July 18, 2010 at 11:39:52
@Jackbomb
the results are looking good.
do u think lucid hydra will take full advantage of 2 or more gpu?

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#7
July 18, 2010 at 11:45:47
I'm not posting system specs because I just need to know general information, not necessary with my computer. And about PCI video card, I meant if I could put two or three of same PCI video cards, if it would help or not. I didn't mean to mix it up with PCI-E.

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#8
July 18, 2010 at 11:47:15
"So, I can install two identical PCI-E cards at same time, ok."

Yes, if your motherboard supports SLI or CrossFire.

"Can I do same thing with PCI, to install two identical cards at same time?"

Yes, but that won't improve video performance. Two standard PCI cards will allow you to run up to 4 monitors. That's it. The performance boosting SLI/CrossFire is only for PCI-E.

Also, PCI is an ancient, slow technology. If you want 4 video outputs, install an AGP or PCI-E card to drive the first two monitors and use the PCI card to drive the rest of them.

@ kuwese:
"do u think lucid hydra will take full advantage of 2 or more gpu?"

I had to Google lucid hydra, so I'm obviously not the one to tell you...lol.

HTPC | Pentium M @ 2.82GHz, 2MB L2) | 4GB | 1.0TB | Radeon HD5750
Blu-Ray | Win7 Pro | HDMI out to Onkyo TX-SR707


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#9
July 18, 2010 at 11:54:25
And one more question, related to video cards.
Is that ok to put regular PCI card on PCI-X (very old) slots? I heard of some people saying "yes", because PCI can easily fit in PCI-X but some people say "no" because those are two different slots, don't mix them.

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#10
July 18, 2010 at 12:11:40
I don't think pci card will fit into pci-e slot.

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#11
July 18, 2010 at 20:00:03
Vladi,

I don't think you're getting it. There are several different slots that can be used for video cards & they are NOT interchangeable:

- standard PCI slots accept standard PCI cards only
- AGP slots accept AGP cards only
- PCI-X slots accept PCI-X cards only
- PCI-Express(aka PCI-E) slots accept PCI-E cards only

There are two technologies that will allow you to pair up two identical PCI-E cards to boost graphics performance...one is SLI, the other is Crossfire. SLi is for NVIDIA cards only. Crossfire is for ATI cards only.

One of the drawbacks to SLi & Crossfire configurations is the cost. Not only will you need to buy two video cards, but unless you already have a kickazz power supply, chances are it would need to be upgraded too. Two video cards + power supply could easily cost well over $300. And as jackbomb pointed out, you should also have a fast processor to be able to take full advantage of the dual card setup.

And as you were told, adding a standard PCI card to a system that already has an AGP card or PCI-E card will NOT gain you any performance whatsoever...zero, zip, nadda, none! All it will do is allow you to connect more monitors.


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#12
July 18, 2010 at 21:29:28
Thank jam. I understood all those info just fine even before. Just my last question was if I could put PCI card in PCI-X slots and no one has answered that yet so far. You said, that PCI-X works only with PCI-X, but I wasn't sure about that. I heard from few people that PCI can go easily into PCI-X slots. I'm not talking about PCI-E or AGP. Just PCI-X are very-very old kind of slot and some people missunderstand them as PCI-E.
And thank you for rest of your answer.

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#13
July 19, 2010 at 00:26:08
"i don't think pci card will fit into pci e slot" my answer

"standard pci slots accept standard pci cards only" jam answer.


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#14
July 19, 2010 at 10:02:59
kuwese, thank you for explaining me several times same thing over and over. But can you say something about PCI-X? What do you know about them?

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#15
July 19, 2010 at 11:34:13
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI-X

Try google.


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#16
July 19, 2010 at 11:52:17
I'm not posting system specs because I just need to know general information, not necessary with my computer.

Actually your system specs including your motherboard specs is very important. Only a certain few motherboards support crossfire, or SLI, and two "PCI-E" slots are required.

Don't confuse PCI-X with PCI-E, two different beasts

PowerMac 9600(1 ghz G4)
512mb RAM
50gb SCSI
ATi 9200 PCI


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#17
July 19, 2010 at 20:54:55
Thank you, Outlander for pointing that out, hopefully kuwese will understand that PCI-E and PCI-X are "two different beasts".

And also I want to say to grasshopper, I don't want to sound mean, but it is easy to point out somewhere else and just let people read the whole article. In this way, I didn't even have to post in here, just go and read articles. Please, don't consider me as mean, but there is a simple question, can PCI cards go in PCI-X slots, are they interchagable or not.
And thank you, guys, for posting here and trying to help me out. Once I will understand these basics, I can move on and help other people who might need some help from me in future.


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#18
July 19, 2010 at 21:07:15
Here is something that I was looking for, I found it in article provided by grassshopper:

PCI-X is generally backward-compatible with most cards based on the PCI 2.x or later standard, meaning that a PCI card can be installed in a PCI-X slot and PCI and PCI-X cards can generally be intermixed on a PCI-X bus, but the speed will be limited to the speed of the slowest card


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