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Lucid HYDRA 200 Mixed Multi-GPU Technology Performance Preview
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Old 11th November 2009, 18:43   #1
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Default Lucid HYDRA 200 Mixed Multi-GPU Technology Performance Preview

Starting with the 3DMark Vantage results, you will see that the HYDRA scaling method with the pair of GTX 260+ cards pushed performance up by 83% - definitely a competitive solution to SLI! Considering the fact that this motherboard, in its theoretical construction, didnít have to pay for any type of SLI licensing, I would say that THIS is the reason NVIDIA might have put pressure on MSI to delay the Big Bang motherboard.
When we take a look at the GTX 260+ combined with the GTX 285, the results are not what I initially expected. As most of you, I would assume that a configuration with a single GTX 260+ and a much more powerful GPU (the GTX 285) would produce a higher combined framerate than the pair of GTX 260+ graphics cards but that was not the case. Instead, the performance of the 260/285 combination happened to be nearly identical to the 260/260 results. Why is this? Lucid tells us that the software based algorithms for separating workloads across identical GPUs differs greatly from the one required for load balancing with non-identical GPUs and thus scaling will in fact differ. There is some software overhead and load balancing overhead that has to take place and that costs us some performance. We had to assume this would be the case but it just kind of goes against standard logic: 2 + 2 = 4 but also 2 + 3 = 4 in the case.
http://pcper.com/article.php?aid=815
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Old 11th November 2009, 18:55   #2
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Strangely enough GTX260 + GTX260 > GTX260 + GTX285 ??
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Old 11th November 2009, 20:05   #3
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It makes perfect sense. "load balancing" they have to sync/match/pair exactly basically.

GTX260 + GTX285 would = unbalanced sync
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Old 11th November 2009, 21:14   #4
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Ah, okay, now I see. So, the only advantage of this Lucid chip would be not having to pay the SLI licence and compatibility between two non-matching videocards. Two questions:

- How much is the Lucid licence?
- In what way is this solution better than the one of Nvidia and Ati in terms of performance? The load balance forces people to both a similar performing card anyway. Which is the same with SLI.
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Old 11th November 2009, 21:57   #5
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The funny thing is that in the beginning they promised that de Lucid Hydra would give a near 100% performance increase when using two identical graphics cards ... 83% is far from 100% and basicaly exactly the same as what SLI/Xfire gives us.

I'm still thinking why people would want to have both an AMD and a nVidia card in one pc.
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Old 11th November 2009, 22:06   #6
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I could be interesting if the chip didn't have to balance the load. So, whenever you need more graphical power, you could just install the best price/performance card in your system and be done with it. Then haven the Ati or Nvidia choice would be cool.
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Old 12th November 2009, 03:10   #7
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We have to remember the drivers are still early,so it could scale to 100% performance perhaps.Also, micro stutter which affects ati/nvidia might not be experienced in this situation. We have to wait and see.
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Old 12th November 2009, 07:32   #8
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Quote:
Ah, okay, now I see. So, the only advantage of this Lucid chip would be not having to pay the SLI licence and compatibility between two non-matching videocards.
uhm... you missed the GTX 285 vs GTX 285 + GTS 250 chart?
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Old 12th November 2009, 08:20   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Massman View Post
I could be interesting if the chip didn't have to balance the load. So, whenever you need more graphical power, you could just install the best price/performance card in your system and be done with it. Then haven the Ati or Nvidia choice would be cool.
For upgrading purposes it does indeed sound like an interesting option and if it indeed doesn't suffer from microstuttering then it would even be a better thing to have
However, to run optimally I think they'll have to tweak and upgrade their drivers for every single game which is a very expensive thing to do (read: a lucid chip might be more expensive than the sli license)
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Old 12th November 2009, 08:25   #10
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Quote:
Lucid wouldn't tell us the added cost on a motherboard but Lucid gave us the guidance of around $1.50 per PCIe lane. The high end chip has 48 total PCIe lanes, which puts the premium at $72. The low end chip has 24 lanes, translating into a $36 cost for the Hydra 200 chip.
http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3646

the nForce 200 chip costs ~$30 per mobo.
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