cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Red Team Discussions

Adept II
Adept II

To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

  1. Whether 'tis nobler to stay single GPU, or double the pleasure and to do so end the suffering, Ok enough pseudo Shakespeare. So  I just recently purchased a Asus Strix B450-F motherboard that has crossfire, so I'm considering a CF with my Gigabyte RX 480 8gb, on a reddit discussion, it was mentioned  about how the structure in this case Polaris, needs to be the same, some were saying to CF 2 exact 480s or you can go up or down, IE 580 or 470 some were saying, just sell the AMD card and get an Nvidia, of course those are Nvidia fans, I have a a freesync monitor so I won't consider that at the risk of losing that important feature not to mention Nvidia cards are more pricey. Some questions I haven't gotten an answer to is, does the VRAM need to be the same, could I just pair a 4gb card with the 8gb being the main one? Is it as simple these days as just installing the cards no cable needed? What about the power cable does that get split or does there need to be 2 seperate power connectors? I'm on a tight budget since I just bought the mobo and 32gb memory. What card should I get if any? If I sold the RX 480 and was going to upgrade It probably be a Vega 56 card, but that is not really affordable for me, considering an RX 480 goes for as little as $90 + shipping. in case your wondering what I do mostly on my PC? I play FPS games like GTA, Flight and Space sims, 3rd person games as well, sometimes stream at the same time, don't play to many AAA titles sometimes video editing/rendering. Rarely overclock I can OC the RX 480 stable at 1.4 with Afterburner, have a Ryzen 7 1700 with Wraith coole but will be changing over to a cooler master liquid cool cooler when I upgrade so maybe do more OC in the future, funny thing is 1700 don't really need that much cooling since the run so cool to begin with, last I did a Ryzenmaster OC from stock 3000 to around 3800 and temps went no higher than 51 C, Werll that ps TMI but thought I would share that info Anyhow As you can see I'm a newb when it comes to CF, I have time to decide, I'm expecting the Mobo next Wed maybe sooner maybe later it's from Amazon so hard to say, I will most likely buy the 2nd graphics card used, like I did the RX 480.
12 Replies
Esteemed Contributor III

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

1. New Nvidia Turing cards support FreeSync.
2. Does the VRAM need to be the same, could I just pair a 4gb card with the 8gb being the main one?

You can DX11 CrossFire two GPU models with diffwerent VRAM but it it would be equal to CrossFiring two 4GB cards. Y
ou can only use the lower VRAM amount. 4GB of the 8GB card is unused.
3. You do not need a CrossFire Bridge on AMD GPUs since the R9 290x.
4. What about the power cable does that get split or does there need to be 2 seperate power connectors?
You should use two separate cables.

Final Comment though.


Do not waste your money purchasing another RX480 for DX11 Crossfire.
It is no longer supported by AMD.
AMD Adrenalin 2020 Drivers have very poor MultiGPU support and Crossfire Profiles are missing.
Games with existing DX11 Crossfire profiles are breaking with new updates to games but no CrossFire Profile maintenance / fixes.
No new games will get DX11 Crossfire Profiles.

DX11 CrossFire is dead as a Dodo.

DX12 MultiGPU is a total joke as well.
I did a quick review of Games that were supposed to work with DX12 MultiGPU at the end of 2019.
Very few of them showed any benefit of DX12 MultiGPU.

Either sell Your RX480 and buy a new more powerful single GPU or keep your RX480 and buy another component for your PC such as a fast SSD for your OS Drive.

Good luck.


Adept II
Adept II

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

I appreciate the detailed explanation, I understand what you are saying about the AMD cards and DX, that said you said Nvidia Turing cards which are a bit pricey for me support Freesync. I did a quick search and found that apparently Pascal cards like the 1060 also support Freesync through display port, which is how I connect my Freeysnc monitor, however looking at this article https://displaygeeks.com/amd-freesync tells me it still requires a AMD APU or some kind of AMD GPU. That said Benchmarks for the 1060 VS the RX 480 show the 1060 out performs it, the 1060 is affordable these days and I could easily get one if I sell the RX 480, but I wouldn't be able to crossfire 2 1060s, since that would be SLI, unless there is something I don't know about? So what's the point of having a crossfire capable motherboard these days? Would I have anything to gain if I Upgrade to a 580 or 590? I might find a Vega 56 in my price range, but I've heard they aren't as good for gaming, is that true? Thanks

Esteemed Contributor III

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

If you look on this forum you will see that I used to be very positive about DX11 Crossfire and DX12 MultiGPU.
I started trying out DX11 Crossfire on a Sapphire HD 7970 OC 6GB with a Sapphire R9 280X OC 3GB.
I then moved on to using R9 Nanos, FuryX+Nanos, FuryX's.
I own many Fiji based GPUs and I do run multiGPU PCs for Compute and Blender.
AMD did a good job supporting some new AAA games with DX11 CrossFire when the RX480 launched because a pair of RX480 in DX11 CrossFire or DX12 MultiGPU were the only way they could take on Nvidia GTX1080 at the time, until the RX Vega 64 Liquid was launched.

A single high performance GPU such as the RX Vega 64 Liquid is always a much better idea than a pair of cards in DX11 CrossFire or DX12 MultiGPU.
In fact AMD were not going to support DX11 Crossfire for RX Vega 64/56 after launch, and only implemented it for a pair of cards due to some customers buying a pair of them and for use in synthetic benchmarks such as 3D Mark.

Times have changed, DX11 CrossFire is now dead technology DX12 MultiGPU never really took off.
GPU Prices have also increased.
RX480 at launch was available for 200 - 250.
RX5700XT which has ~ same die size costs 399 - 500 now. 

Most people simply cannot afford a pair of them to run anyhow.

I post this now and discuss your options w.r.t. new GPU next.

Esteemed Contributor III

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

I suggest you get an account on Nvidia Forum and ask if GTX 1060 now works with AMD FreeSync Display directly without having to route the output through an AMD APU or another AMD GPU somehow.

RE: That said Benchmarks for the 1060 VS the RX 480 show the 1060 out performs it, the 1060 is affordable these days and I could easily get one if I sell the RX 480, but I wouldn't be able to crossfire 2 1060s, since that would be SLI, unless there is something I don't know about? The GTX1060 does not support SLI as far as I understand it.

DX11 CrossFire is AMD way of running a pair of AMD cards for DX11 games.
SLI is Nvidia way of running a pair of Nvidia cards. 

Neither are worth running. Both are obsolete. Forget it.
That was the point of me sending you the video about it.

RE: So what's the point of having a crossfire capable motherboard these days? 

There isn't really any point in having a "CrossFire Capable Motherboard" these days for most people, unless they already have a pair of AMD GPUs.
For some people they have a few favourite games or some applications that still need a pair of cards like VR applications.
There are some applications in Professional GPU requiring DX12 MultiGPU support.
Other than that those motherboards allow you to connect multiple GPUs for Compute or Blender and have plenty of slots for adding video capture cards etc.

I post this now.
Discuss your single card options next.



0 Kudos
Esteemed Contributor III

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

If you want to stay AMD I think you might be out of options for a low cost new GPU.

I do not think replacing your RX480 with an RX580 or RX590 is worth it, especially since they both increased power consumption significantly at the expense of small increase in performance.

I think you should just keep your RX480 or try to get hold of a new PowerColor RX Vega 56 Red Dragon if you can. 
I own a PowerColor RX Vega 56 Red Dragon and it was purchased at low cost with AMD Games Bundle.
They were still available at low cost ~ 1-2 months ago but I think they are now completely EOL.
They are good for gaming.
They do have HBM2 frequency deliberately limited to 945 MHz though which does limit their performance versus a Vega 64.

You are unlikely to get much for your RX480 if you sell it.

New lower cost RX5000 series cards offer similar performance to RX580/590 anyhow and you will not get them lower cost second hand.

If you do look for Nvidia then you need to go to Nvidia or Manufacturer website and look to see if the GPU has the following in the technical description:

"NVIDIA® G-SYNC Compatible
  Yes."

That means it is very likely to work with your FreeSync Monitor.

You do not need to look at new RTX series GPUs - they are very expensive.
Look for new GTX series and see if they might be a better choice for you.

Bye.

Adept II
Adept II

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

I get what your saying, I do understand that CF is for AMD and SLI is for Nvidia was just wondering if there had been some kind of hybridization or something like that, you mentioned VR applications and I can't believe I left out VR, I have been dabbling with VR games and what not through Steam VR and wondered if a second card could be helpful with the rendering etc. So now I'm conflicted Do I stay with AMD and get a second card just so I can have a better VR experience or just go with one Nvidia card, I'm sure if I pose that question on a Nvidia forum, I know what the answer will be lol

0 Kudos
Esteemed Contributor III

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

RE: was just wondering if there had been some kind of hybridization or something like that.

No.

RE: you mentioned VR applications and I can't believe I left out VR. I have been dabbling with VR games and what not through Steam VR and wondered if a second card could be helpful with the rendering etc. 

This article is worth reading: https://www.vrheads.com/can-i-use-both-graphics-cards-vr

Even in that article using a pair of cards looks problematic.

RE: So now I'm conflicted Do I stay with AMD and get a second card just so I can have a better VR experience or just go with one Nvidia card.
I am not suggesting you have to go Nvidia.
You could always sell the RX480 and purchase a second hand PowerColor RX Vega 56 Red Dragon, if you can get one for low cost.

You also have the option of a new RX580 (maybe 7% faster than RX480 reference) for ~ 160 new
or RX590 (maybe up to +17% faster than RX480 reference ) for ~ 220 new.
You should be able to crossfire those with your existing GPU, but performance would be hampered by the RX480.
If you are looking for a new Polaris GPU you will have to be quick.

There is also the RX5500XT 8GB option as a new card but that will not Crossfire with RX480.

Esteemed Contributor III

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

I forgot to mention that I just purchased one of these yesterday for OpenCL Compute and Blender, not for gaming:
https://www.powercolor.com/product?id=1551768690 

It is the fastest RX590 you can get, mostly because it has  massive 3 PCIe slot cooler: 

A couple of reviews are here: 
Is this THE BEST RX 590?! - PowerColor Red Devil RX 590 Review - YouTube 
590 FIGHT! What's The Best 1080p GPU? - YouTube 

I should be able to set the clocks to ~ match the performance of of any lower end RX480 or 580. 

Provided that GPU performs well in what I am working on I will then decide on purchase of RX580  2 slot GPU before they are no longer available at low price. 

These are still available with new stock coming in: XFX AMD Radeon™ RX 580 GTS XXX Edition 8GB
XFX-2019 


I am also looking for Low Cost Nvidia GPUs for compute, as I transition over to CUDA for new projects.

I should have the PowerColor Red Devil RX 590 in to test in 1-2 weeks.
If you have a particular game you are interested to see how it performs let me know as I will be running tests anyhow. 
I also own a PowerColor RX Vega 56 Red Dragon so I can easily compare performance on that card as well. 

Bye. 

0 Kudos
Adept I
Adept I

Re: To crossfire my RX 480 or not that is the question

You should go all out and get a VEGA 56. That RX 480 you have is a pretty good card and there is nothing much better than that on AMD this side of a 2nd hand VEGA 56. When you Crossfire you get 50% more performance in the games it works in and a big horrible mess in the ones where it fails. The AMD drivers allow you to set Crossfire and other settings on and off on a game by game basis. So Fortnite you'd have it OFF and Flashout you'd have it ON.

If you have $90 then you can sell your RX 480 and have $180 then also save up and you almost have a VEGA.

Crossfire is fun to play with but is not economically practical. You'd be spending $90 to get $45 more performance.

As for the difference between RX 480 4GB and 8GB it's not the amount of RAM it's the fact it has TWICE the RAM bandwidth! Twice as many chips means twice as many tracks carrying data.

0 Kudos