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Windows 7: Dual Graphic Card

15 Nov 2011   #1
Jetson

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 
Dual Graphic Card

Hi,
I currently have a HD3870 and everything's working well. I know, it's not new, but it suits my needs.
For the moment, I'm using my PS3 and PS3 Media Server to play HD movies in the living room (via Gigabit Ethernet) but I can't have DTS-MA or TrueHD to the receiver.
I don't want to pay a fortune in a new GPU since I don't need more than my HD3870 because I'm not playing new games anyway.
My idea was to get a low-end HD5xxx (probably HD5450 for around 30$) but my concern was how to manage those cards as I want to leave the HD3870 in because it's stronger, but have the HD5xxx for movies via HDMI (to get HD-Audio bitstream).
I'm using MPC-HC as my media player with CoreAVC and FFDShow (which is compatible with bistreaming over HD5xxx).
How Windows and driver manage both GPU since they are not the same generation (HD3xxx and HD5xxx)? Crossfire?
Is there a way, in MPC-HC, to tell it where to feed audio and video? I can't try it as I don't have a second GPU yet.

I'm not sure if it's clear enough but feel free if you have questions.

Thanks!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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15 Nov 2011   #2
Maguscreed

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 x64
 
 

First the 3870 is not stronger.
Unless you meant 4870 then it has more kick.
The truth is the newer cards have such a massive number of stream processors compared to the older cards a mid range will completely out do a super performance model from just a few years ago now.

In my case 1 5850 = superior to 2x 8800gtx in sli.

Anyhow I would suggest going with a 6 series card as the money is about the same and you get a little more core clock speed.

Mixing the two cards on one system is more dependent on your motherbaord chipset than anything else. If you board is dated from the time of that graphics card, unless it specifically states it is a crossfire board, you are kind of out of luck on that front.

...anyhow here's my low profile/ low cost suggestion.
Newegg.com - XFX HD-645X-ZQH2 Radeon HD 6450 1GB 64-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready Low Profile Ready Video Card
it has vga/hdmi/dvi outputs so should eliminate the need for any adapters at least.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Nov 2011   #3
Jetson

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

If I compare the HD3870 with the HD6450, it is better everywhere (except in power consumption).
Radeon HD 3870 512MB vs Radeon HD 6450 (OEM) – Performance Comparison Benchmarks @ Hardware Compare

That's why I'm saying it's stronger.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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15 Nov 2011   #4
Maguscreed

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 x64
 
 

oh I must have missed something on that mark, yeah you'd need another 58xx/68xx to really beat it out.
The problem is a 30 dollar budget, on less than 100 I could easily improve it.
a 5750 would completely blow it away, lower power and higher numbers, but it's a roughly 90 dollar card.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Nov 2011   #5
Jetson

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

The reason I don't want to put 100$ on another GPU is the fact that my PC only has an Athlon64 X2 6100+
with 6Gb DDR2.

And putting a HD5750 or over would be overkill.

That's the reasonwhy I asked if putting a low-level HD5xxx or HD6xxx would work as I want: Be able to choose within MPC-HC the card to output Audio/Video.

Thanks a lot Maguscreed!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Nov 2011   #6
stormy13
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Yes it will work, and no Crossfire isn't needed (it wouldn't work with those two anyway). Also you don't make the selection in the program as to which card is used, that is determined by which monitor it is opened on and which card that monitor is connected too. In your case you would open MPC-HC on the monitor connected to the HD 5xxx/6xxx.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Nov 2011   #7
Jetson

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

So, if I understand, only putting the MPC-HC window on the HD5xxx/6xxx, the HD-Audio bistreaming will automatically (with proper configuration) work? That would be exactly what I want since the HDMI would be connected to AV receiver in the living.
Thanks a lot, I'll give it a try!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Nov 2011   #8
stormy13
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

The audio you would have to set in the program if it allows it, but for the video yes just open it (or drag it) to the monitor/card you want it to run on. As far as I know MPC-HC does, but if it doesn't (or any other you may use) then you will also have to set the HDMI audio for the second card as the Windows default audio device.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Nov 2011   #9
Jetson

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Yes, MPC-HC has the ability to choose the audio output internally.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Nov 2011   #10
johne53

Windows 7
 
 

Just out of interest, does anyone know if there are any reasonable quality graphic cards still available with dual VGA outputs? I need VGA because although both my monitors have HDMI inputs, they're already in use with a separate Apple Mac. I'm thinking of buying myself a PC but it would need to use the VGA inputs on both monitors. I don't want to be constantly swapping leads around all the time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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