Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2 should perform better?

Discussion in 'Videocards - AMD Radeon' started by Tee_k, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. Tee_k

    Tee_k New Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2
    Hi, i had to register here because i need some ancient hardcore knowledge when it comes to this card. There is obviously not a secret that these cards have their share of problems around the world. But i think my system should perform better in games, way better. (i hope).

    My System:
    Motherboard: Asus P5Q
    CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 2.83 @ 3.4ghz
    Ram: 4x OCZ PC2-6400 Gold Edition 2Gb @ 832 mhz 8gb total
    Graphics Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2
    PSU: Corsair HX 850w

    All running with Windows 8.


    I don't play a lot "insane" games, only some World of Warcraft and some Battlefield 3 sometimes. But i have fairly low settings in both of the games, and it still seems that the card can't handle it.

    For those who plays or have played WoW, i run 40-50 fps in stormwind with no people there, and fairly low settings.

    Yes i have enabled the Catalyst A.I and set it 2 Advance mode. People say that it enables the Crossfire, but i don't see any difference if i have it off or on or whatever in games. I have also tried millions of drivers, and i currently use 10.4v. I seem to get the "highest" fps with that.

    Bottom line, is it just me or should my setup run especially WoW way better? I get some kind of flickering in high mountains often. The card temps are just fine, rather good for a card like that. 60-70C and under Load max 75-85C. All the games are installed on a Raptor disk.

    Halp please? :bang:

    EDIT: I also got a EVGA 8800GTX Graphic card, and i didn't notice big differences in fps, if i noticed some difference at all. These card isn't even in the same ballpark are they? Radeon card should rape the EVGA card?
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2012
  2. kevsamiga1974

    kevsamiga1974 Master Guru

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    GPU:
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    Ditch Windows 8 and stay with Windows 7 if you want to use a leg*** card with any decent drivers. There is only one driver available supporting for Windows 8 and it's total plop IMO. Clock bugs on second ASIC.

    Using 10.4 isn't a good idea either if you want crossfire to work properly on more games, because profiles are inside the driver files as well as just the caps. 10.4 is severely out of date. Not a good idea.

    Make sure you have decent CAPS and sufficiently high driver to match it, say 11.12+CAPS. Wow should work ok in that case then.

    There is simply no reason to be saddled on 10.4 because newer profiles are needed for newer games on multigpu. Try fifa 12 on 10.4 and you'll see what I mean, jerky mess because the drivers are just not mature enough, and well you will just encounter weird glitches and bugs with newer stuff or the image quality will be worse. Mostly no choice here but to use something recent. Although it was the last version where OpenGL worked mostly, they stopped improving the 4870x2 at 10.10 when they finally fixed the second gpu being idle and doing nothing in games from 10.6 onwards.

    10.4 on some games it will be equivelent to using 1 gpu because x-fire will not engage automatically on specific titles, resulting in performance drops. Or it will show gpu's are loaded but you won't get the performance you're supposed to in any case.

    Unfortunately you are discovering the quirks of multigpu crossfire setups, and how problematic they can be.

    11.9 is always a fallback failsafe for me when things were problematic, if nothing else works try those.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2012
  3. GotNoRice

    GotNoRice Active Member

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    GPU:
    3x GTX680 SLI
    You should be using 12.6 + latest CAPs. Absolutely no reason to be using old drivers, especially with Windows 8.

    World of Warcraft is the main game I play. I play this game considerably. For years, and up until earlier this year I ran 2x 4870x2 in quad CF in my main computer. I still have the cards in my secondary computer. These cards run World of Warcraft just fine.

    As far as your settings go, the most important thing is to make sure you are running the game in Fullscreen. There is another setting, "Windowed (Fullscreen)" that is basically a maximized window. Many like to use this setting because with multiple monitors it will allow your cursor to go off the main screen without having to alt-tab, etc. Unfortunately crossfire will not function at all in any form of windowed mode, even a maximized window, so make sure you have the game set to Fullscreen.

    Other than that, you want to run the game in DirectX11 rather than DirectX9. Even though the card is only DirectX 10.1, it will run the DirectX11 game using the 10.1 feature level, which is still an improvement over the 9.3 feature level (DirectX9c).

    Catalyst AI does not need to be set to advanced for crossfire to function. Disabling Catalyst AI will disable crossfire but it can be set to either Standard of Advanced and crossfire will function. I believe AMD recommends leaving it on standard.

    Sometimes the shadows will flicker with crossfire but usually adjusting the shadows slider up or down one notch will fix it. This minor issue is the only issue there has been with crossfire in this game for a while.

    Even just one of the GPUs on the 4870x2 is faster than an 8800GTX.
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2012
  4. kevsamiga1974

    kevsamiga1974 Master Guru

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    GPU:
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    Humbug...the latest drivers are a complete turkey for legacy multigpu cards. I don't want to be a party pooper but...

    12.6 is already "old"...based as it stands on a driver from April. Nothing new since then apart from token CAP updates, Farcry 3 driver optimisations for 4870x2, or a promised quarterly release schedule of the new suppport model, forget it...

    There has been plenty to benefit from since this time since April, but nothing has filtered down to those still holding the legacy badge. So if you're going to be using a driver that's already over 6 months old anyway, no reason not to use an even older one and get your robbed performance back, Windows 8 aside. eg. 12.6 BFBC2 = 38fps 4870x2, 12.2 preview BFBC2 = 60fps 4870x2 all @1080p same hardware/Win7 x64

    Therefore it boils down to a case of choosiing the lesser of two evils, old or older drivers...

    And as far as that goes 11.x series were much less problematic than the 12.x series for 4870x2 before textures started disappearing and performance nosedived in games along with multigpu clock bugs inherent in 12.x. And an altogether less polished experience for the lower end of the spectrum, busy as they were, concentrating on improving the 7000 series starting circa 12.2.

    When it comes to AMD drivers, newer does not always equate to better in my experience because old cards get forgotten about, and oddities and performance drops which don't occur on DX11 hardware, can create problems and issues for older cards.

    Although....on a bastardised tablet OS you might not have any choice but to use 12.6 due to CCC.

    Crossfire shadow flickering in specific game titles started after 10.5, and I'm willing to bet he doesn't experience this with WOW on 10.4. It happens in Company of heroes too and it was never fixed, even up to 12.6 because something got changed with how the driver handles internal crossfire starting from 10.6. On 10.5 down to 8.7 game shadows don't "crossfire flicker". Only on newer drivers...
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2012

  5. GotNoRice

    GotNoRice Active Member

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    GPU:
    3x GTX680 SLI
    I don't have any of the performance loss or texture issues that you report when using the latest drivers. 12.6 + latest CAPs has always given me equivalent or better performance to older drivers and this has held true with my 4870x2s by themselves as well as in Quad-Crossfire, and also with my other computer running 4850s in crossfire. There is certainly nothing to fear about the latest drivers when it comes to WoW. The shadows flickering was always sporadic and I'm not sure if it even occurs with the latest drivers as it never occurred on my preferred shadows setting anyway. There are about 8 different notches on the shadows slider and it only ever occurred on one of them. I have over 400 days of played time in WoW; the game is very important to me. If newer drivers had lowered performance, I would have reverted in a heartbeat.

    This is the performance I was getting before I switched over to my 680s in SLI. This was done with the 12.6 drivers @1080P with all settings at Ultra, 12xAA (4x Edge Detect) using DX11 and the 64-bit client. I did a /timetest then used the free druid flight path from Moonglade to Thunder Bluff. Of course that was also with 4 GPUs and a 5Ghz sandy bridge but point is, I don't think the drivers were holding anything back.

    Min: 22.692
    Max: 237.706
    Avg: 147.645
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2012
  6. Tee_k

    Tee_k New Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2
    Hmm, i now installed Win7 and all of its updates, and the 12.6 drivers for the card. I also reset my BIOS, in case that ruined anything. Yes i noticed a big difference when it came to FPS in WoW. A 40-50fps increase in some places. Still struggle in raids etc tho, 15-20fps in 10man, with Shadow visibility on low, and the visibility length set to "fair" the lowest.

    I use full screen of course. What do you guys mean by CAPS? Game profiles?
    I don't think my game will run much smoother if i clock the Cpu back up to 3.4ghz. I've been told that WoW doesn't require much Cpu power. Its just something weird about this card, cant put my finger on it, just have this odd feeling about it.

    Maybe its just me who wants it to be better than it really is. But i payed a ****load for this system 3-4 years ago, so i just expected more. But i guess when it comes down to it, i have to build a new and modern pc if i want that performance i really and truly want..
     
  7. naike

    naike Ancient Guru

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    I know how you feel man. A decent gaming system costs 1500€ roughly, and that won't last for years as you would like it to :dd
     
  8. GotNoRice

    GotNoRice Active Member

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    GPU:
    3x GTX680 SLI
    http://sites.amd.com/us/game/downloads/pages/crossfirex-app-profiles.aspx

    You can install them over the top of the 12.6 legacy drivers.

    I don't know that it "requires" much CPU power but it certainly does benefit from it. I was running a Q9650 overclocked to 4.4 Ghz before and upgrading to a 2500k @ 5Ghz was a huge upgrade that made an immediately noticeable difference. MMOs are notorious for hitting the CPU hard, especially in a raid environment.
     
  9. Tee_k

    Tee_k New Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2
    I just want to give an update regarding my system.

    I installed Windows 7 again without overclocking, and the system have been pretty stable and performing better now. But i do feel the lack of performance still, but i think i'm starting to accept that fact. A 4-5 year old system, that still manages to run games like wow and battlefield 3 with descent graphics. With some tweaking and adjustments you can make the game run fps smooth. Even tho the game almost maxes out my CPU(q9550).

    I am thinking about just buying a new Graphics card, but my motherboard offers only a 2.0 graphic speed, and the newer cards today, needs 3.0. So i really don't know what to do. Any tips regarding that?
     
  10. PF Prophet

    PF Prophet Master Guru

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    GPU:
    Zotac 1070 mini/290x
    they do not require or even in most cases take any real advantage of the 3.0, all pci-e versions are backward compatible, I have a friend who for 2 months ran his 6870's in an old Xpress200 chipset(480x chipset) and they worked fine, despite being a bit crippled by the cpu in that rig....

    the story behind that was due to intel jerkin him around on an RMA of an 980x, in the end he gave up and replaced the board and cpu with an x6 1100t he bought from a site that cherry picks(hes at 4.3 on it), a month later intel finely sent him the replacement cpu that he then sold with the board due to his anger at how he was jerked around(no excuse for it taking months to rma a cpu....none at all....specially a extreme edition chip....)

    hes now running 3 6950's(all unlocked) without issues and hes only using a 890fx ud7 motherboard(only has pcie2).

    if you want to upgrade, grab a decent card, then, as you can afford it, grab a cpu/mobo/ram combo even if its a lower end cpu on a decent board, you can always upgrade the cpu....keep in mind, intel changes sockets like some women change shoes......so you will want to plan to get your cpu upgrade within say a year of grabbing the new board.
     

  11. shimyns

    shimyns Ancient Guru

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    GPU:
    SAPPHIRE r9 290x Tri-X OC
    It is very important to install the latest caps. I use the 12.6 drivers and the latest caps. I play with most of the settings on the highest, in most games, even the newest ones, such as hitman absolution. Having some trouble with far cry 3 but that is because it is a total GPU hog and doesn't use the CPU at all.

    All in all, this card is still quite powerful and can handle any game. Install the caps as suggested.
     
  12. Tee_k

    Tee_k New Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2
    That is a relief, thanks a lot mate. I was thinking of buying a:

    - Sapphire Radeon HD 7970 GHz 3GB.

    And later on buy a upgrade package like this:

    - Intel® Core i7-3820 Processor, Socket-LGA2011, Quad Core, 3.6Ghz, 10MB, Boxed

    - ASUS P9X79, Socket-2011,ATX, X79, 8xDDR3, 3xPCIe(3.0)x16, CFX&SLI, SATA 6Gb/s, USB 3.0, FW, EFI

    - Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600MHz 8GB CL9, Kit w/2x 4GB XMS3 modules, CL9-9-9-24, 1.5V, Vengeance Heatspreader, 240


    That package costs around 800usd without the Graphics card. Is this a Ok upgrade? or could i do better? I have been wanting to try out AMD cpu for some time now, see how it works.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2012
  13. Tee_k

    Tee_k New Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire Radeon HD 4870X2
    I have installed the latest drivers, 12.6 and the latest Caps as suggested. But i still notice fps drops in games like World Of Warcraft and especially Battlefield 3. But after i installed windows 7 again, the system has been more stable, no doubt.
     
  14. PF Prophet

    PF Prophet Master Guru

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    GPU:
    Zotac 1070 mini/290x
    my advice is look for a kit with a K series cpu, then add a 3rd party cooler, also the ram is "ok" I would aim for something 1866 with how prices have been dropping(i got my 32gb 1866 kit for $110 recently on sale) depending on cost, you would probably at least want to add a 2nd ram kit, without it your gonna be running at dual rather then quad channel. and that kinda sucks.

    I build intel for people but never for myself, I get tired of the socket changes that for a time had me swapping out motherboards on a regular basis, and if theres anything I hate having to do its swap out motherboards...my current boards had a athlon II 435@b35(unlocked tricore to quad), a 1055t@3.6(4.1 all cores when turbo kicked in) and a 8120@4.5, it will in the next few months get an 8350, pretty good upgrade path for my needs.

    I will agree if you just game and dont do heavily multi-threaded tasks and dont tend to upgrade your cpu intel is likely the better option, and that rig your looking at wont be bad IF you can add a 2nd ram kit......or tweak it to have a K series chip.....if you just game a 3550k would probably be a better buy for you, bit of an OC and it would be faster then a locked chip, and should cost less.

    K series chips are unlocked, like Black Box Amd chips.

    but yeah the videocard you linked would be fine, IF you can get a gigabyte 3fan model those are better in my exp, but the 7970's a beast either way :)

    due to perf under the beta drivers i just ordered 2 7870's (should get them monday) at the price newegg had them on clearance for, i couldnt pass them up. not with the price so close to a 7970 and perf that will in most cases be better :D
     
  15. Strykaar

    Strykaar Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire 4870x2 2GB
    Wanted to reopen this old thread looking for some help myself. Recently got a 4870x2 from a buddy for real cheap, it was a major upgrade from my old 9600gso, or so I thought. In the case of games like Max Payne 3, Grid 2, etc, I'm getting excellent performance. But when it comes to wow, this card just stinks.

    On my backup system, Phenom II x2 550 @ 3.4ghz 4gb DDR2 800, Ultra 450W psu, Palit 9600GSO 768MB DDR3, I can max wow at 1280x1024 except for shadows at good and get 60fps pretty much solid.

    On my current rig, Phenom II x4 840 @ 4.0ghz 8gb DDR2 800, Corsair 750W, Sapphire 4870x2 I can barely keep my head above 40fps @ 1920x1080 all Ultra. I've tried many drivers, crossfire is engaging, but I'm only seeing about 50% utilization across gpus. The weird thing is when I disable crossfire, you'd think I'd still be kicking the 9600gso around see as how 4870>9600gso, but I'm getting like 20-30 fps. Something definitely isn't right here and I just can't figure it out.

    I've tried kevs 11.12 and 13.1 reloaded, currently trying dellon's 12.11 and it's all pretty much the same story. Any thoughts?
     

  16. Strykaar

    Strykaar Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire 4870x2 2GB
    Another thing I forget to add, I've ran the game in dx9 and dx11 and get the same exact fps. The only difference is more gpu utilization in dx11 (about 65%) but again, same fps as dx9.
     
  17. airbud7

    airbud7 Ancient Guru

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    DX11 on a 4870x2 ???
     
  18. Undying

    Undying Ancient Guru

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    I think he means DX10. :D
     
  19. dellon132

    dellon132 Ancient Guru

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    Well a good thing to do when Upgrading to a New Graphic Card is make sure both Graphic Cards are running on a Freshly installed OS, or by using a Capable Driver Cleaner such as the one in this LINK to remove Previously installed Driver as they can cause performance issues and other possible bugs. Next would be to make sure both Cards are utilizing PCI Express x16 (it should not be utilizing anything below that level.)

    Other Thoughts
    If you are using my driver I recommend make use of the Dx9 Switcher as it does contains Performance Switchers so Users can change the level at which the driver Performs. After Using Wagnard's Tool to Clean up Nvidia Drivers you can then proceed Using the included Driver and Package Cleaner in the Dx9 Switcher Folder. Or you can continue using Wagnard's Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU) to clean up your AMD Driver's prior to every new Driver installation to prevent possible bug's of installing drivers on top of another driver.

    Note: All Performance Switchers are Permanently Applied so if you want
    restore the driver back to your default Performance then you would need to use the Default Switcher. Other Switcher's such as the CrossFire Switcher along with the Flash Player Switcher can be either Enable or Disabled.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2013
  20. Strykaar

    Strykaar Member

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    Alright Dellon, I'll give it a shot and report back tomorrow.

    And I did mean Directx11 as that is the option in WoW. The 4xxx series will run the dx11 code it'll just shed features specific to dx11 and default to 10.1 features.
     

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