X1950Pro Crossfire woes

Discussion in '3D Hardware, Software & Output Devices' started by Randell, Oct 8, 2007.

  1. Randell

    Randell Senior Daddy
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    I'm not a great believer in multicard solutions as opposed to gettting a better single chip card, but I ended up with 1950pro's in crossfire when a friend upgraded to a 8800GTS. As I have a crossfire motherboard (bought because it was one of the best AMD939 boards I could still find) and the 1950pro crossfire reviews were positive (40-70% gains, similar to my 3dmark gains) I thought why not.

    However most of my more recent games show no benefit from Crossfire, in fact one World in Conflict is marginally faster in single card mode! Games that include NWN2, Medieval 2, WiC, ET:QW, Two Worlds. I'll have to double check Bioshock.

    e.g. testing ET:QW demo, at 1680x1050 at high and normal settings no AA, gives me 42 fps at high and 44fps normal, both with CF enabled and CF disabled. I thought with CF defaulting to AFR at least, all games were meant to get a boost?

    Is there something different about all these games that means a bottleneck is elsewhere?

    Rest of system:

    AMD X2 4200 CPU
    2gig ram
    Win XP
     
  2. digitalwanderer

    digitalwanderer Dangerously Mirthful
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    That's goofy. Dumb question I gotta ask, please don't take offense...but did you enable Crossfire in Catalyst Control Center?
     
  3. Randell

    Randell Senior Daddy
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    yes, and I double checked every time, and I ran 3d mark, which does show 60%+ increases, and specifically with ET:QW I tried with high and normal settings and no aa and 2 xAA to see if that showed anything. WiC I can explain away I think, one card is 256mb, and the one I was given is 512mb, so the slight gain is probably due to that, but even so, so many games just don't feel like there is any material improvement, and fraps doesn't show anything whilst I'm playing in a lot of these games. Certainly not the kind of significant gains 3dmark shows.
     
  4. ShaidarHaran

    ShaidarHaran hardware monkey
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    Did you enable Catalyst AI?
     
  5. digitalwanderer

    digitalwanderer Dangerously Mirthful
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    Isn't QW:ET openGL? I don't think Crossfire supports openGL. :???:
     
  6. ShaidarHaran

    ShaidarHaran hardware monkey
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    Prey and Q4 both work well w/CF. Perhaps it's adaptive anti-aliasing you're thinking of?
     
  7. Randell

    Randell Senior Daddy
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    CCC controls are at default, so Cat AI is on standard. I haven't installed ATT so not to confuse things :) Using the latest hotfix drivers.

    I'll have another go tonight and post proper scores up here.
     
  8. karlotta

    karlotta pifft
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    Rename the .exe. "Fear" has been a good one for me.
     
  9. AlexV

    AlexV Heteroscedasticitate
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    Not needed nowadays. Setting CatAI forces the performance AFR mode. The standard setting uses the compatibility one. There's no more SuperTiling, so basically unless something breaks AFR, scaling should be there. OTOH, all of the games he listed are CF sore-points, and since we don't have the same flexibility the nV guys have WRT profiles and MultiGPU rendering modes, we have to wait and pray for ATi to do something about it.
     
  10. Randell

    Randell Senior Daddy
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    Okay, here the numbers I ran tonight, some very suprising and disappointing.

    All at 1680x1050, except 3dmark06 which was at default 1280x1024. All games at medium or normal settings with no AA except Lost Coast which was at Valve recommended levels and 2xAA. All in-game benchmarks run twice and second result taken.

    Single Card numbers first, then Crossfire

    3dmark 06

    SM2.0 1882 3271 (nice + 73.8% boost)
    SM3.0 2103 3606 (+ 71.5%)

    WiC 29fps 31fps (woohoo + 6.8%, min/max numbers were the same)

    ET:QW Demo 46.6 46.3 (a fractional drop, great :( )

    Two Worlds Fraps (1 minute run around Tharbakin town)

    18.85fps 20.155fps (ohh another + 6.8%)

    HL2 Lost Coast stress test 78.81 78.20 (another fractional drop)

    I cant beleive the Lost Coast result. That 640mb GTS is looking more and more attractive. I really thought 2x1950pro's would tide me over until ATI got a decent mid-range DX10 card out.
     
  11. Randell

    Randell Senior Daddy
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    In answer to Sharkfoods now lost request.

    CS:Source single card 114.38fps, crossfire 117fps sigh..
     
  12. Davros

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    quick Q out of interest why was supertiling dropped

    another question in afr mode if you slightly moved or rotated one of the images woulnd you get temporal aa for free ?
     
  13. ShaidarHaran

    ShaidarHaran hardware monkey
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    Too much load-balancing overhead? Just a guess.

    Sure, but each GPU would have to have the results of the previous frame (calculated by the other GPU) in order to calculate an offset, or you'd need to use a compositing chip (ala previous Crossfire implementations) to do that for you. Clearly the compositing chip is the superior solution for performance reasons, but raises costs slightly and lessens flexibility (multi-GPU + multi-display not possible).
     
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