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View Poll Results: How Do You Have Your Video Cards Arranged?
2+ Cards, Directly Next To Each Other 12 12.37%
2+ Cards, With At Least 1 Empty Slot Between Them 33 34.02%
1 Card, Other 52 53.61%
Voters: 97. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-14-2011, 02:24 PM   #1
Ryan Smith
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Default [Poll] How Do You Have Your Video Cards Arranged?

Hi guys, your friendly neighborhood GPU editor here.

I'm doing a bit of research for a future article and I'd like to get your input. For those of you with multiple video cards I'd like to know how you have them arranged. Specifically, do you have your cards directly next to each other, or do you have 1 (or more) open slots between them?

My goal here is to get an idea of how most people have their multi-GPU rigs setup.

-Thanks
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Old 12-14-2011, 02:29 PM   #2
96Firebird
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I only have 1 card, but I assume most people are just using whatever PCI-E slots they have available. I just recently got a motherboard with more than 2 PCI-E slots, but its not like I would have a choice where the other one went...

So I guess this is geared more towards those with the nicer motherboards.
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Old 12-14-2011, 02:32 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 96Firebird View Post
I only have 1 card, but I assume most people are just using whatever PCI-E slots they have available. I just recently got a motherboard with more than 2 PCI-E slots, but its not like I would have a choice where the other one went...

So I guess this is geared more towards those with the nicer motherboards.
It's open to everyone. If you have a motherboard that only gives you a single option to arrange your cards, I want to hear about that too.
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Old 12-14-2011, 02:36 PM   #4
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I have a mATX board that only has one full size slot so that's the one my card is in.

Edit: If I was going multi-gpu I would personally prefer to have space between the cards even if that meant spending extra on a motherboard that would allow for it.
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Old 12-14-2011, 02:38 PM   #5
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I only have 1 card!
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Old 12-14-2011, 02:50 PM   #6
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I'm fanatical about temps and i couldn't stand to run them on top of each other.
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Old 12-14-2011, 02:59 PM   #7
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I have 2 dual slot video cards with one empty slot in between them. When I was narrowing down my m/b choice to go with the i5 750, this was a factor.
Often times, m/b manufacturers had to configure, so there is no slot between dual slot cards, to squeeze another/more pci-e slots on to a ATX board.

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Old 12-14-2011, 04:00 PM   #8
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I have two cards, with one slot separating them. I would also note that my two cards are not the same length - I got lucky here. My shorter 5850 is below the reference 5850, which means not only is there separation between the two, but the longer 5850's intake fan isn't really blocked at all.

As a side note, my cards run cooler in Crossfire than they do on their own. I attribute this to potentially slightly lower load per card (it's hard to keep them at 99%, perhaps due to Crossfire scaling limitations or a CPU limitation). But I wouldn't be surprised if having two cards actually acts as a wind tunnel of sorts when one slot separates them. I have an internal 120mm fan that blows cool air directly at the cards - with two cards, that air is forced to travel a straight path between the cards, rather than being diverted in every direction.
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Old 12-14-2011, 04:29 PM   #9
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I current have a space between my cards on a z68 board. But I've had cards on top of each other before as well on an evga x58 sli le board and a matx p55 board. If testing is done I would prefer to see tests with cards on top of each other since that's the worst case scenario.
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Old 12-14-2011, 04:31 PM   #10
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ASUS RAMPAGE III Extreme. I would have a free slot between my two GTX 580's, but my accelero aftermarket 580 coolers obstruct the usable area =(
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Old 12-14-2011, 04:39 PM   #11
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two dual slot 4890's in CF, with one slot separating the two.
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Old 12-14-2011, 05:26 PM   #12
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4850x2 + 4850 1 slot separating the 2
3870 x 3 single slot, all next to each other, but the slots are spaced for dual slot cards
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Old 12-14-2011, 05:54 PM   #13
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I only have one card at the moment, but I've definitely run cards in 2-way SLI and Crossfire before (on this motherboard and others).

I generally buy my entire system around the video card(s), so having at least 2 spaces in between the PCIe 16X slots is one of my main criteria for selecting a motherboard. That way I can be sure there will always be at a one slot gap between the cards. I've never realistically considered running more than 2-way, so I don't worry about more than two cards.
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Old 12-14-2011, 07:52 PM   #14
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my 2 year old matx gigabyte p55m-ud4 takes video cards in slots 1 (next to the cpu) and 3. i go for slot 1, even tho the extra bandwidth isn't used.

my new z68mx-ud2h-b3 (i'm looking at the box for that name ) takes video cards in slots 1 and 4 requiring at least 5 slots on the box, which is a terribad move. i suspect it's to facilitate multi-card use with their own down-blowing multi-fan cards. personally, i would run 2 of those vis a vis because i know what i'm doing and most newegg people do not.

asus did not feel the need for such a silly move with their matx gene thingy.
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Old 12-15-2011, 05:26 AM   #15
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I always keep pci-e placement in mind when im picking out a motherboard. I like to keep 1 slot between dual slot cards for cooling reasons. I'd only chose not to in the case of a triple video card configuration, because then it would be impossible... except for maybe on E-ATX mobos.

Now my system is watercooled, so that spacing is not as important, but that extra spacing makes connecting the cards together easier if I'm not using expensive fittings or custom bridges.
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Old 12-15-2011, 06:31 AM   #16
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Two in 1 machine & 3 in the other. The 3 in SLI are 2x Water Cooled & 1x Air with the air being the 3rd slot. The spacing is next to each other slot wise but WC covers the issue of airflow. 2 in CF have 1 slot between them for airflow, both air cooled.

My brother doesn't care and has his GTX 560 Ti SLI setup directly next to each other.
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Old 12-15-2011, 06:45 AM   #17
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Single GPU with two empty slots between it and my PCI X-Fi.
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Old 12-15-2011, 07:48 AM   #18
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1 graphics card. I have a little PCI wireless adapter as well, which I keep at a good distance from the GPU.
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Old 12-15-2011, 08:24 AM   #19
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Running a single 570... but will be running SLI in the future I think.
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Old 12-15-2011, 08:24 AM   #20
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3 GTX 260's right next to each other. Top two are a little warmer than the bottom one. they idle in the 50's and load in the 70's
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Old 12-15-2011, 08:44 AM   #21
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Wow, why do you guys run more than 1 video card?
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Old 12-15-2011, 09:07 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Smith View Post
Hi guys, your friendly neighborhood GPU editor here.

I'm doing a bit of research for a future article and I'd like to get your input. For those of you with multiple video cards I'd like to know how you have them arranged. Specifically, do you have your cards directly next to each other, or do you have 1 (or more) open slots between them?

My goal here is to get an idea of how most people have their multi-GPU rigs setup.

-Thanks
Ryan Smith
This is a very good question and im happy to answer.

I have my 2 460's as far appart as possible, i even bought a EATX case to make that happen. One in top slot and one in far bottom slot. Im also using them in a 16x/8x configuration as thats how my mobo works unless they are back to back in the top slots.

I find this has reduced temps by over 10c on the top card and allows for a greater overclock on both cards.

So as you can see i made some serious sacrifices in both banndwidth and purchasing a new case just to seperate my cards.

I hope this helps.
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Old 12-15-2011, 09:14 AM   #23
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I use one GPU. On my old MB which was X-Fire capable, it was either x16 & x0, or x8 & x8 so my video card was in the x16 slot which was closest to the CPU. My new MB is x16 & x16 and I put my GPU into the slot closest to the CPU out of habit. Didn't even think about which slot I put it in until this post.
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Old 12-15-2011, 09:23 AM   #24
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I have a small case and an ATX Motherboard, so unfortunately I do not have much room to spare between cards.

Thankfully, due to my Scythe Slipstreams 110CFM fans and Sapphire's Vapor-X Technology, they manage to stay relatively cool.
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Old 12-15-2011, 09:28 AM   #25
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I have the three of them crammed together. I would space them out, I could put a full PCIE slot of space between two of them with my current board, but I'll take 16x/8x/16x over 16x/8x/8x.
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