Thursday, August 23, 2012

SLI and CrossFire Support Definition

When a video card has SLI or CrossFire support, more than one video card can be used in the same computer. Using multiple Nvidia video cards is referred to as SLI or "Scalable Link Interface". Using multiple AMD video cards is referred to as "CrossFire". This can greatly increase performance if the program being used supports SLI or CrossFire. Otherwise performance may even become worse.

This is convenient because a computer can be built with one video card at first and still have room to upgrade without getting rid of your old card. Using two of Nvidia's card usually requires the cards to be the same model with a few exceptions. AMD, on the other hand, allows a little more flexibility as long as the first two numbers in the card's name are the same. This means that a Radeon HD 7870 can be paired up with a 7850 but not a 7750. This chart at Tom's hardware explains more about what cards can be paired together.

Check beforehand whether your motherboard supports SLI or CrossFire. Your power supply may also need to support SLI or CrossFire when pairing some of the higher end cards.

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