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Here is my specific context, but in the spirit of stackexchange, I won't disparage any more general or unrelated advise.


  1. 2500k with Z68 motherboard (ASUS P8Z68-V)
  2. GTX560
  3. 9800GT
  4. Two monitors. Lets say both 1920x1080.
  5. plenty of PSU

Should I keep my 9800GT installed? The point of it would be to keep my second monitor offloaded from the primary graphics card, as well as the ability to run cuda on it.

A few particular questions-

  1. Could the second graphics saturate something actually making the system overall slower?
  2. Will the second card be used for cuda at all since their are both nvidia cards?

Any real world testimony of this situation would also be appreciated.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

In this situation, I wouldn't really bother. You have 2 monitors or less, and aren't running SLI, so the offload on the second card will be minimal. The primary card would be doing all the rendering anyways in Win7/Vista/OS X.

If you are running SLI, then I'd keep the extra card installed for the extra monitors. Supposedly you can get SLI to work with two monitors on the SLI'd cards, but from personal experience, it's a pain in the ass. Just put the extra monitors on the extra card and be done with it.

If you have more than two monitors, you must have an extra card, as each nVidia GPU will only drive 2 monitors.

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There's one situation where it will be useful - you can, i believe, use the 9800 as a dedicated gpgpu/cuda card – Journeyman Geek Dec 31 '11 at 1:50
You can't SLI different NVidia graphics cards. From Nvidia's website: Can I mix and match graphics cards that have different GPUs? No. For example, an XXXGT cannot be paired with a XXXGTX in an SLI configuration. Unless you're suggesting that he keep the one card in addition to an already existing SLI configuration? – Wesley Dec 31 '11 at 2:41
@WesleyDavid, that is exactly what he is suggestion. SLI traditionally only supported one monitor total for the two cards. the dual monitor thing is recent. – user606723 Dec 31 '11 at 3:57
@WesleyDavid That is my suggestion. The first paragraph was to his particular situation, the other two were to help flesh out the answer and fill in other cases that one might come across. – Darth Android Dec 31 '11 at 4:47
@DarthAndroid, Can you please explain "the primary card would be doing all the rendering anyways." I don't understand. If my second monitor is hooked up to my 9800GT, will it not be rendered there? – user606723 Dec 31 '11 at 18:46

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