1,011 Likes 82 Dislikes
I Explain Why Multiple GPU Setups (SLI) Aren't Worth Your Money, in this video I walk you through the installation process, tell you what you need for a sli-config setup, and then proceed to push my biases on you, explaining why you should never purchase a sli or crossfire configuration until they can implement the technology more effectively.
Hey guys, Thaddeus here! Today we are going to tackle the age old question of, is SLI configurations worth-it? Well I decided to make this video because despite all the other videos I saw on YouTube I still wasn’t convinced if it was worth it or not. So like any savant I bought an additional graphics card and threw it into my system.
Before I dive into the video and get into all the specifics, I want to mention everything that is required to run an SLI system, I won’t get into the nitty gritty, just some basic stuff I’ll highlight now as a point of reference for you guys.
1. You must have a motherboard with multiple PCI Express Slots.
2. You must have an SLI Bridge to connect the GPUs together (the motherboard I purchase came with a 2-way sli bridge)
3. You must have power supply that can power and connect to your additional gpus.
To bring up everyone to speed, and to make this an informative video I will briefly elaborate on what SLI-Technology is. SLI (Scalable Link Interface) is a brand name for multi-gpu technology developed by Nvidia for linking two or more video cards together to produce a single output. SLI is an algorithm of paraellel processing for computer graphics, meant to increase the processing power available for graphics. With that being said, you can also have multiple-gpus in your system to add additional monitors, or to dedicate one gpu for a specific task, like having one gpu process your monitor displays while the other renders graphics in adobe after-effects.
First let’s talk about the installation process, it’s straight forward if you’ve built a pc or have swapped a gpu before. If applicable remove the back-plates of your casing so the i/o panel on the gpu is accessible from the rear of the case. Next gently guide the GPU into your machine directly over the PCI-Express Slot, match the groves of the GPU to the PCI-Express Slot and firmly press down until you hear a “click” noise. If you didn’t hear a noise, just double-check that the GPU isn’t loose and that it’s aligned properly. It only goes in one way. Make sure to bolt-down the gpu onto your case by securely fastening screws in the perforated screw-holes on the gpu. Now repeat this for any additional GPUS you are adding to your system, if applicable remove the rubber sleeve that is concealing the golden-fingers on the top-side of the gpu, this is where you will establish your SLI bridge to connect multiple GPUS. In that case, you must compromise by either bringing it closer, or getting a longer sli-bridge.
Okay now that we’ve got the installation process out of the way, lets talk about performance.
The way I see it, if you buy an additional graphics card, you are spending twice as much for a single gpu. So in essence, if you spend twice as much you should gain twice as much graphical power and performance, with the exception of moores law and other pc components potentially bottlenecking your performance. But it was apparent right off the bat that this wasn’t the case, I wasn’t even seeing 1.5x the performance with the additional graphics card. Now I could get very technical and pull-up benchmarks, but I find benchmarks miss-leading for most circumstances with sli-configurations. If you ever see an impressive benchmark, it’s because they are testing the sli configuration to do only one task, which isn’t practical for most people who use their machines to do multiple things, like gaming, video editing, and web-browsing.
So for the sake of time-constraints let’s get to the conclusion. I find it not worth It, the performance is negligible in all circumstances I tested, without me providing proof, this is just my word. So take it as is, but I would highly deter anyone from believing that a multiple-sli configuration setup is more practical than just upgrading a single gpu. Not to mention, an additional gpu means more electricity and also more heat, which brought my case-temperature up 4-5 additional degrees and even higher for longer computing sessions. With all this said, and reflecting on what I said, I kind of sound like a negative nancy, so I want to end it with something positive. Without a doubt sli-configurations are eye-candy, they’re awesome, they represent geek culture and I turn into a kid every-time I stare into my case. There’s also something alluring about having a tremendous amount of unnecessary power, even if it is to run games over 120fps. With that being said, I hope you found all this informative, and that you leave here with a conclusion of your own.