Two displays: one graphic card or two?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by bengi, Nov 5, 2016.

  1. bengi macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2011
    #1
    This is my setup for a MacPro 3.1 still a valid choice for the tasks it is used (statistic packages, spereadsheets and word processing).
    Mere speculation, is a waste of watts using two graphic cards? Since I noticed some video artefacts when I connect both displays to the GeForce (especially when adjusting Excel spreadsheets) so I re-installed the old ATI to drive the secondary display.
     

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  2. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2014
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #2
    IMO, using the 3,1 (or even 5,1) is already a waste of watt.

    Anyway, more GPU not necessary means use more power in multi monitor setup.

    e.g. For my HD7950, when only one monitor connected, the card can go into the low power mode (150/300MHz state), so, only 15W required. When 2 (or more) monitor connected, it can only reduce to 500/1250MHz state, and cost 50W idle. So, actually install two 7950 to drive 2 monitors will use less energy.

    Of course, this is just true for some GPU, not all of them like this. But you better check the power draw by yourself and determine one card or two cards is the better option for you.
     
  3. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #3
    Video artifacts on your 8800 GT may be a bad omen... That graphics card has a bad history of high failure rates.
     
  4. AkuskaUK macrumors 6502

    AkuskaUK

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2011
    Location:
    Shanklin, Isle Of Wight
    #4
    The 8800GT was plagued with problems due to using a lead free solder which cracks when it gets hot. I baked mine twice before I finally ditched it for a 770.

    The artefacting is most definitely from that.
     
  5. Macschrauber macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2015
    #5
    Maybe you can give it some extra months by cleaning the fan and renew the thermal paste
     
  6. AkuskaUK macrumors 6502

    AkuskaUK

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2011
    Location:
    Shanklin, Isle Of Wight
    #6
    I cleaned it and renew the thermal paste after every bake because you need to take the heatsinks off. The 8800GT was just a terribly made card. It was a beast in its day though!
     

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