Topic Title: Why does crossfire suck so badly?
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Created On: 12/03/2012 11:51 AM
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 12/03/2012 11:51 AM
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jashon093
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I have AMD Radeon HD6850 1GB crossfire on AMD crappy chipset SB770 which only supports PCI-E 2.0 x16 and x4 CF configuration.

 

What is the point of crossfire if it gives uber crap performance across the board on a wide range of games? The stuttering is what really screws it up the frame rate can be high 50's but feels like its below 20 on single card even running at just above 22-25fps feels so smooth and really enjoyable compared to this crapfest.

 

SPECS:

Asrock M3A77DE

AMD Athlon X4 620 @ 3.51ghz

Kingston HyperX 1600mhz 10gb @ 9-9-9-10-1T

XFX HD 6850 + ASUS Direct CUII HD 6850 in Crossfire X

Corsair Force 3 120gb on 6gb pci-e x4 raid card, 2x WD Cavier 500gb in Raid 0

Corsair AX850 PSU

Samsung SyncMaster SA350 27inch (1920x1080)

 

So what do you recommend? Shall I sell this hunk of junk and upgrade to GTX 680 and i7 3770k?

 12/03/2012 01:48 PM
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Mime
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Running one PCIe slot at x16 and one at x4 probably isn't helping.  Running both at x8 would be better, if that's even possible without getting a different board altogether.

The stuttering can happen whenever there is multiple GPUs working together... no matter what other hardware is in the system.  It's not as common in systems that have three or four cards, but it's still possible, and that's probably not the upgrade you had in mind anyway. 

The problem comes about when the cards get out of sync.  When that happens one card has to wait for the other to catch up... leading to those annoying hiccups.  It doesn't seem to affect frame rates, because frame rates are computed across a relatively long period of time.  Those hiccups get averaged out.



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 12/03/2012 04:05 PM
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black_zion
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Agreed, the AMD 770 chipset provides for 22 PCIe lanes, which at most gets you x16/x4 electrical. That means you're likely losing performance compared to just a single card as you run them now. So, here are your options:

1) Run a single 6850 and sell the second.
2) Sell both 6850's and buy a single HD 7970
3) Sell the lower mainstream motherboard and get a 790 series based one which supports x16/x16

If I were you, with just a 1920x1080 display, I would go with a single high performance card over Crossfire, that way you don't have to worry about the drawbacks of Crossfire.


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 12/03/2012 05:58 PM
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Mileunder
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What games are you getting these frame rates from? Are you using the latest drivers and CAP? What graphic settings (in catalyst) are you using? 

Make sure the cards are running at the same clock and memory speed.

Try disableing VSync. It can cause stuttering.

Lower antialiasing and shadows.  You may be hitting the buffer limit.

Make sure your cards are being cooled properly. Some cards will throttle themselves down if they get too hot.

I personally havent had a problem with micro stuttering with my last 2 crossfire builds so I doubt its that, but its possible.

SIDE NOTE

I used to use the exact model motherboard you have and It is excellent for crossfire. I had 2 5770`s running Crossfire and I almost always had over 100 frames in any game. So I doubt its the motherboard at fault.

 12/03/2012 06:01 PM
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stumped
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The FAQ section of this forum has some good info/links:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-geforce-stutter-crossfire,2995.html



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 12/03/2012 06:56 PM
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jashon093
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Originally posted by: Mileunder What games are you getting these frame rates from? Are you using the latest drivers and CAP? What graphic settings (in catalyst) are you using? 

 

Make sure the cards are running at the same clock and memory speed. Try disableing VSync. It can cause stuttering.

 

Lower antialiasing and shadows.  You may be hitting the buffer limit.

 

Make sure your cards are being cooled properly. Some cards will throttle themselves down if they get too hot.

 

I personally havent had a problem with micro stuttering with my last 2 crossfire builds so I doubt its that, but its possible.

 

SIDE NOTE

 

I used to use the exact model motherboard you have and It is excellent for crossfire. I had 2 5770`s running Crossfire and I almost always had over 100 frames in any game. So I doubt its the motherboard at fault.

 

 

Yeah well according to you the motherboard is decent for crossfire so that eliminates that. The link that stumped posted seems to tell the story I think AMD screwed up the 6000 series in terms of crossfire X in dual GPU mode. I have disabled vSync some games run ok like Max Payne 3 but most other games have the stutter issue like NFSMW, Sleeping Dogs, Saints Row 3 etc lol.

 

This does not seem worth it to me I guess I will sell the cards was looking to upgrade anyway prob move over to LGA2011 or 1155 and get myself a GTX 680 the nvidia cards seem to have less microstutter in SLi so that will be good for the future.

 12/03/2012 07:14 PM
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Mime
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I imagine that's mostly what the CAPs do... they help keep GPUs in sync while playing some game in crossfire.  Micro-stuttering is fundamentally a problem on how to schedule a distributed system, and it's difficult for either the driver, or the game to do that well without one knowing anything about the other.

Vsync, however... doesn't really have anything to do with how many GPUs you have in the system.  It simply caps the frame rate at the refresh rate of your display, in order to prevent screen tearing.  Since you're not going to be seeing those frames anyway... no big loss.  I guess it's possible if the frame rate is still above the refresh rate(which in this case, it isn't), then vsync might appear to fix it, but I wouldn't bet on that. In any case, vsync still wouldn't actually do anything different than it would on a single GPU.

As for why this might not happen with 5770's.... If a single GPU isn't able to regularly saturate a PCIe x4 link, then it won't cause a problem in crossfire.  That used to be the case years ago... now I'm thinkin things have probably changed.



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Edited: 12/03/2012 at 07:36 PM by Mime
 12/03/2012 09:41 PM
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black_zion
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An HD 5770 doesn't saturate the x4 link, BUT there is no reason to get dual HD 5770's when you can get a single HD 5870 (or 6970, or 7950/70) and have greater performance with less hassle.

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 12/03/2012 10:31 PM
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Max9R
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Get Radeon Pro, it works wonders on micro stuttering.  Smooths it right out. 



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 12/04/2012 12:44 AM
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Mileunder
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You might want to wait off on the new mobo, since 1155 and 2011 are now dead and the replacement is on the horizon. But now is a excellent time for a GPU purchase. 

 

 12/06/2012 09:56 AM
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jashon093
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Originally posted by: Mileunder You might want to wait off on the new mobo, since 1155 and 2011 are now dead and the replacement is on the horizon. But now is a excellent time for a GPU purchase. 

 

 

 

 

What are you really sure will the next 2013 high end processor not work in the current high end socket 2011? Please can you show me a site confirm what you are saying and the time line, predicted price at launch etc.

 

I reckon with latest Z77 chipset or highend 2011 chipset I should be fine for most new features such as Thunderbolt and pci-e 3.0 etc. How big could the new processors be I am stuggling to think what new features they can bring right now.

 

So you are saying end of this month to upgrade is not a smart move at all?

 12/06/2012 10:03 AM
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jashon093
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Also just wanted to say I messed around with a few BIOS setttings and well most games have really been smoothed out alot I mean max payne 3 on ultra has never ran so smooth even on a single card. It seems like every movement has been sped up if you know what I mean like moving around and running is butter smooth and clean. It is like I missed out on something I thought it was smooth on a single card but this is like its on some drugs its very fluid movements.

 

I do not know exactly what I did but I think I might of had some throttling issue on my processer and that screwed my gaming experience. Now when I check on linpack it stays at the full 3.51ghz @ 100% all the time before it used to dip every 15 seconds or so. At max load I am hitting 67 degrees using a crappy corsair h40 with coolermaster sickleflow fan. The voltage is at 1.584v haha

 12/06/2012 10:10 AM
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jashon093
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  I just read this on techpowerup so I guess I shall go with LGA2011 if that is the case.

Intel Core i7 "Ivy Bridge-E" HEDT processors are compatible with existing socket LGA2011 motherboards (subject to BIOS update), and are slated for Q3-2013.

 

 

 

 

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