Since the Intel P67 is a brand new chipset, we decided to change a few things up in our testing. The next two pages are all about the scaling of multiple GPU’s in our systems. First off, we are going to test how well the P67 chipset scales multiple NVIDIA cards. In order to do this we contacted our friends over at GALAXY and they were kind enough to send over a pair of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 1Gb graphics cards that are available in a two card SLI kit.
While the ECS P67H2-A Black Extreme doesn’t officially support NVIDIA SLI, it does utilize the Hydra Core technology which allows two graphics cards to run in parallel. In this case we are going to run our two Galaxy GeForce GTX 460’s in an SLI type configuration. In Rebellion’s Aliens Vs. Predator the performance gains we see are comparable to what we have seen on our NVIDIA SLI licensed boards. Running the AvP benchmark at 1280×1024 the ECS P67H2-A Black Extreme saw a boost of 84.8% while our best scaling SLI boards have gained between 89.2% and 90.7%. While running at 1920×1080 we also saw a gain of 84.8%, while our other boards were sitting between 90.6% and 92.3%. There is a slight performance difference between the two technologies, but this is a promising start.
The Hydra Core technology didn’t fare quite as well in Metro 2033. In fact, we saw almost zero gains at both 1280×1024 and 1920×1080. At 1280×1024 the MSI P67A-GD65 saw a gain of 78% while the ECS P67H2-A Black Extreme saw only a 4.3% performance gain. Our results at 1920×1080 mimic our lower resolution results. The MSI P67A-GD65 saw a gain of 72% while the ECS P67H2-A Black Extreme gained only 4%. These results were disappointing after the gains we saw in Aliens Vs. Predator.
Our final test for NVIDIA SLI scaling is S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat. These results are also discouraging. at 1920×1080 the ECS picked up only .4 frames per second, this is a gain of only .7%. At 1280×1024 the ECS P67H2-A Black Extreme picked up only .6% with a second Galaxy GeForce GTX 465.
Our “SLI” results are definitely on the disappointing side. Only one of our three game benchmarks saw any significant performance gains. We do have to keep in mind that the ECS P67H2-A Black Extreme doesn’t officially support SLI. Unless I am mistaken though, the Hydra Core technology allows the two cards to work together for a performance gain. Unfortunately, we just didn’t see that in our testing.