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HardOCP: CrossFire vastly improved with 290X, smoother than SLI in some games

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Senior member
Jul 22, 2009

So much talk about smoothness, frametime, and the actual experience of multi-GPU video cards while gaming has been discussed lately. In the past, AMD has been highly criticized of having a sub-par CrossFire experience, and rightly so. There were major issues with smoothness where games would stutter or feel choppy, even though the framerates looked good. We've been telling our readers for years that CrossFire just didn't feel as good as SLI while gaming.

Those times have changed, at least on the new Radeon R9 290/X series. The new CrossFire technology has improved upon the CrossFire experience in a vastly positive way. Playing games on the Radeon R9 290X CrossFire configuration was a smooth experience. In fact, it was smoother than SLI in some games. It was also smoother on the 4K display at 3840x2160 gaming, and it was noticeably smoother in Eyefinity at 5760x1200.

AMD is using its Frame Pacing technology, but that is a software technology. That, combined with the evolved CrossFire technology is providing a noticeable benefit to the gameplay experience compared to the previous generation cards. Once you've gamed at a large resolution on CrossFire with R9 290X, you likely won't go back.

It is safe to say, from a real-world gaming perspective, stuttering is no longer an issue one has to worry about. Low framerates don't feel "stuttery" anymore, you no longer have to achieve the highest framerates to get a smooth experience. We were pleasantly surprised how smooth the gameplay was on the 4K panel with CrossFire. We can only hope this technology evolves to future products, and AMD stays on its feet and never lets a bad CrossFire experience happen again.
Already have one of these: http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2351024
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