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Different Graphics Cards Work Together

One of the strong points of CrossFire is ability of different graphics cards to work together, which is very important, given the number of ATI RADEON X800 and X850 models already available on the market.


ATI RADEON X850 graphics cards in CrossFire mode. Click to enlarge

Since a CrossFire Edition graphics card is needed for ATI multi-GPU operation, ATI’s add-in cards partners will produce three CrossFire Edition graphics cards:

  • RADEON X850 CrossFire Edition 256MB – 16 pixel pipelines, 6 vertex pipelines, 520MHz/1080MHz core/memory. $549.
  • RADEON X800 CrossFire Edition 256MB – 16 pixel pipelines, 6 vertex pipelines, 400MHz/1000MHz core/memory. $299.
  • RADEON X800 CrossFire Edition 128MB  – 16 pixel pipelines, 6 vertex pipelines, 400MHz/1000MHz core/memory. $249.

In general, ATI recommends to use CrossFire Edition cards with corresponding RADEON X800 or X850 chips, however, theoretically RADEON X850 CrossFire should work fine with RADEON X800 cards and RADEON X800 CrossFire will work well with RADEON X850 cards.


ATI RADEON X850 graphics cards in CrossFire mode. Click to enlarge

While ATI allows graphics processors with different amount of pixel pipes to function together, a processor with more pipes will disable “extra” pixel processors (e.g., in case a RADEON X850 PRO works with RADEON X850 CrossFire Edition, the latter will operate as 12-pipe GPU). Both cards will continue to operate at their individual clock speeds. However, if one card performs significantly faster than another, it will throttle its clock-speed so that to remain synchronized.

 
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