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Building First SLI System, Need Advice

OrbitzXT

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#1
Hi everyone, I just wanted to say thanks in advance for the advice I'll get, this site has helped me make some great purchases and saved me trouble buying something I shouldn't. Anyway in another thread I finally figured out what video cards I wanted to go with. I've never built an SLI system before but am very excited. I decided to buy two of these Foxconn 8800 GTS 640MB, they seem like a great value for the money.

As for motherboards most of my experience is with Gigabyte, I've had nothing but highquality products over the years, the system I'm using now is a DS3. But I think, unless someone here suggests otherwise, that I'll be going with "EVGA 122-CK-NF67-T1 LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 680i LT SLI ATX Intel Motherboard" From what I've read it can overclock extremely well, which I need because I'll likely be buying the E6420 and overclocking to 400MHz FSB, for 3.2GHz.

I have a question about RAM though, on NewEgg, the motherboard says the memory stand is 800MHz, could I use this though? "CORSAIR Dominator 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail" I'd like to have faster RAM to OC even more, I've heard the motherboard I picked out can hit 500FSB, so I don't want to spend money on PC2-6400 RAM and limit my OC'ing ability.

Lastly, will any PCI slots be available with 2 GTS's plugged in? I was hoping I'd have at least one for a sound card. As for power supplies I'm going with "OCZ GameXStream OCZ700GXSSLI ATX12V 700W Power Supply" assuming this is powerful enough to handle 2 GTS's? I'm using it in my system now and like the product, so if it can handle it I'd like to use it again.
 

Wile E

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#2
I wouldn't get the EVGA model board. Ask x800professor, his third just died. It has also taken out a few sets of ram, and a few video cards in the process. As for ram, many 800mhz kits will do 1066 speeds, and save you some money in the process, but they're not guaranteed to run 1066. I have these: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231114 and can run at 1100Mhz 5-5-5-15 2T @ 2.3v
 

OrbitzXT

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#3
I was reading that the problem with the EVGA board is leaving it on Auto settings is what can cause problems, but if you manually set your RAM timings and other settings then its an extremely stable, powerful board. On a side note, is there any indication when the 8900's might come out? I read a somewhat outdated article saying the GTX will drop to about $450 when the next group comes out.
 

Wile E

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#4
I don't think nVidia has made any official announcements, but the rumors I hear say fall.

And just so you know, x800prof didn't have anything set to auto, as far as I know.
 

Tatty_One

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#5
Do you really need the 640MB versions of the 8800GTS, there is just no way you are going to use all that memory, I would go for the 320MB versions and save yourself some money personally, just my 2 pennies worth. The power supply should be fine.
 

Wile E

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#6
While it may not be necessary for him now, I'm willing to bet future games will make more use of the extra memory. We still have no idea what DX10 will bring, or require for that matter.
 
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#7

Tatty_One

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#8
While it may not be necessary for him now, I'm willing to bet future games will make more use of the extra memory. We still have no idea what DX10 will bring, or require for that matter.
I hear what you are saying but MOST current DX9 games actually can use more than 512MB VRAM but the majority of card owners still only have 256MB so there is no problems there, it's only at the higher res that there is a difference plus if it was thought that the only way you could have stutter free smooth DX10 gameplay was through more than the 640MB I suggested on his proposed setup dont you think that ATI/NVidia would only bring out cards with more than 256MB memory?, I cannot beleive either company would throw out cards of whatever speed and capability that couldnt run DX10 on 256MB of memory, and they have all got DX10 material to support the development of the technology.
 

OrbitzXT

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#9
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#10
im sure i saw an article (though it may have been one on crossfire) that in some games only one cards memory is used properly, so 640's may prove more effective, though im still considering getting a second 320meg gts myself (though not in my current mobo, the pci-e slots are far too close together, plus my rigs far too crap for it to be worthwhile)
 
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#11
having a super powerful card and not be able to enable ultra textures, becuase it needs @ min 512mb, thats sad. I say go for the 640...