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 Post subject: ATI Fusion questions/discussion
PostPosted: Fri Sep 09, 2011 10:18 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:56 pm
Posts: 68
I did a search and didn't turn anything up so if this has been posted elsewhere please correct me and i'll ask the moderator to close this thread.

I seem have this problem where I always get the black sheep videocard that everybody hates.

I had a Geforce FX5950... umm yeah.

well now I've gotten myself into the same kind of boat and about a year ago I bought myself a Radeon HD 5870. I wanted this card because it was the best one I could get without going dualGPU, and the price tag wasn't too bad. Looking forward I was thinking of getting a second card for Crossfire, something I didn't think I"d ever do, but now that ATI has me hooked on Eyefinity, the extra processing power could really help my multi-monitor display. Something I wouldn't bother with on only one display.

So here is my question. (trying to keep it away from a "what should I buy" question)

With the information that's floating around about ATI fusion, would it work to purchase a different videocard than the one I currently have? Does Fusion work with 2 discrete videocards, or is it only designed to harness the unused power of your integrated graphics chip when using discrete graphics?

I can't find my videocard on NCIX anymore, although I haven't tried newegg, I've seen a few on ebay, but if I can upgrade to a 6000 series and "fusion" my cards together, that would be a better solution than scouring the internet for a used card to match mine. Assuming it works that way.

Thoughts? Insider information? Facts obtained through corporate espionage? Please share!


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 Post subject: Re: ATI Fusion questions/discussion
PostPosted: Mon Sep 12, 2011 8:09 pm 
Thunderbird
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Well first of all, technically ATI doesn't exist anymore. AMD kept the moniker on the video cards after they acquired the company several years ago, but mostly just for the brand recognition. These days everything sold by AMD is done so under the AMD brand.

Secondly, I think you may be a bit confused as to what Fusion actually is. It refers to AMD's vision of hybridization of the CPU. Specifically, Fusion refers to AMD's new APU architectures that combine discreet level graphics capability embedded on die with x86 CPU's. The first Fusion processors were introduced with the Brazos mobile computing platform. Following that came Llano chips aimed at laptops and lower end desktops. They have since expanded offerings to the enterprise market, and very soon will come the highly anticipated release of Bulldozer to appease the high end market.

What you are referring to is CrossfireX, or the ability to scale multiple video cards in concert for increased performance. Whether or not it's worth it depends on exactly what you are doing, and at what resolution. If you are gaming across multiple screens at ungodly resolutions, then you would see some benefit from a multi-card config. If you are simply running multiple displays, one 5870 is more than overkill. It is possible to scale 5000 series and up Radeons with the embedded graphics found in the Fusion APU's, but this is also still referred to as a Crossfire config.


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 Post subject: Re: ATI Fusion questions/discussion
PostPosted: Mon Sep 12, 2011 9:29 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:56 pm
Posts: 68
I see what I did here.

I got AMD Fusion and ATI Hybrid mixed up. I know what CrossfireX is. I just didn't think it was possible to do it with out all discrete cards being the same model.


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 Post subject: Re: ATI Fusion questions/discussion
PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:22 pm 
Million Club - 2 Plus
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The AMD Fusion chips are labeled as APU's since it combines a CPU with a GPU (marketing term). What's interesting is that AMD also released asynchronous crossfire support on these APU's which allows two different types of GPU's to work together even if they aren't of the same graphical power. I have an A6 laptop that also has a discrete GPU and can be put together in crossfire mode. The APU has a 6520 while the GPU is a 6650, together they are labeled as a 6720G2.

Why is this interesting? Because its the first time AMD has implemented this technology and hopefully will pave way to add different levels of graphical powering video cards together in series without having to worry about matching cards. So theoretically, you could add a new 6970 to that 5870 if they do workout the kinks for asynchronous crossfire support on desktop's. We are still a long ways till it becomes mainstream and proves to be a huge technical challenge. I mean think about it.


Anyhow, as for the 5870, its a discontinued product now and the only way to grab one is used. Look on tech forums or ebay, but be careful that you don't get screwed. I'm in the same boat as you as I also have one 5870 and have been thinking about getting a 2nd one to CF just for BF3 and Skyrim.


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