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I am considering building a pc, and have decided I want an NVIDIA graphics card (either a gtx 780 ti, or a quadro), but I am unsure if getting 2 cards and running them with SLI is worth it. I don't play videogames, but I do a lot of graphic design/3d rendering. Price doesn't matter to me, I just want to know if there will be a noticeable performance increase.

  • Depends. Games have to be designed with SLI in mind. You don't get performance increases from SLI with Super Time Force for example. – Ramhound Sep 27 '14 at 3:13
  • You should consider getting a workstation graphics card instead. These cards use the same underlying graphics processors, but are specially tuned for professional applications with drivers to match. They can be far more expensive (see this question for why), but they'll perform much better for the applications you intend to run. – bwDraco Sep 27 '14 at 3:25
  • @dragonlord by workstation card do you mean something like the nvidia quadro series? – user3308082 Sep 27 '14 at 3:41
  • Yes. You can also look at AMD FirePro. – bwDraco Sep 27 '14 at 3:42
  • @dragonlord ok, i will definitely take a look at the AMD firepro as well. Thanks! – user3308082 Sep 27 '14 at 3:44
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Well if price really doesn't matter to you then I'd advise you to use the money to get a SINGLE high-performance card, rather than dual SLI. Not all applications can be easily configured to run on both graphic cards. The performance increase won't be noticeable if the work you are doing doesn't even need that much alllocation!

More reasons: (Quote from another superuser question)

SLI - require some tweaking, set up to work

Two cards require more power.

Two cards add heat.

Two cards run two fans = a bit more noise.

Most would suggest that one single more powerful card will give you less headache, work with more software, and use less power.

Here's an example(although the subject is gaming):

I just swapped out 2x gtx280 for 1x gtx590 and can safely say it's performance is outstanding while at the same time it is soooo much quieter to run under load versus the old 280sli setup as well as giving the benefits of less heat, lower power consumption and less importantly it frees up a mass of power cabling versus the sli setup as well as freeing up a PCI-E lane for future use.

If you were building a gaming rig, then you should probably go for the dual setup. But if it's graphic design, then it's better to stick with one better card.

EDIT: Yes, as Ramhound said, modern games are designed for SLI in mind, so if you aren't a gamer, go for one high-performance one instead.

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