GTX 480 SLI PCIe x16/x16 vs. x8/x8 Review @ HardOCP

Published: 23rd Aug 2010, 18:35 GMT

Introduction - GTX 480 SLI @ 2560x1600 - GTX 480 SLI PCIe Bandwidth Perf. - x16/x16 vs. x8/x8 | [H]ard|OCP
In our continuing coverage of Multi-GPU configurations with varying PCIe Bandwidth, we put x16/x16 and x8/x8 PCIe to the test. Does having less PCIe bandwidth make difference in gaming? We know that a “lesser” motherboard can save you money. Using GeForce GTX 480 SLI we show you the real-world differences.

Last week we showed you what the real-world gaming performance differences when we used SLI and CFX video card configurations in PCIe x16/x16 operation and x16/x8 operation. Our conclusions were simple, moving the secondary video card of a CFX or SLI configuration into a x8 PCIe slot did not degrade our gameplay experience, or cause significant changes in framerates. So if you have a motherboard that does not support x16/x16 or if you want to space your cards out in your chassis for better airflow, going x16/x8 is not a big deal even on a high end cards like the GeForce GTX 480 SLI.

In light of what we discovered, we wanted to take this testing even further and move to a x8/x8 scenario with two video cards. Why is this important? The fact is that many of today’s users will find themselves in this situation if they go to use CFX or SLI. Here is a quote from a P55 chipset motherboard manual that refers to the first two PCIe x16 physical expansion slots on the motherboard.

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