caution re multimonitors and P4 chip

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Ken_DTU, Sep 9, 2002.

  1. Ken_DTU


    Here's a lesson learned, the hard way from me at least, after wrangling with a new pc system, the last few days... a word to the wise, re making sure if you try upgrading to faster CPUs, make sure ahead of time the motherboard will support the multiple PCI cards in addition to the primary agp video card...

    example: I upgraded my pc system again last week to a dual raid, 2.4 gigahertz cpu system, but am having problems with the old favorite Matrox G400/450 agp card w/multiple pci cards for 6 monitors , type setup.

    apparently, faster motherboards (like those based on the intel 850e chipset) don't handle multiple pci video cards well, according to intel tech support.. eg make sure the motherboard will handle it.. tech guy said that as the cpu's are getting faster, they're allocating less resources to the pci bus, which causes problems for multiple pci video cards.

    looks like I'm back to my p3 850 for now..

    using this board: , having a lot of problems with it... I like tyan/asus boards, will likely go back to one of those..

    any ideas/ tech notes/ input? let me know..

    on the bright side, the p4 blazes compared to the 850, it's at least twice as fast in opening apps and running things, so that's good.. I didn't notice much difference going from cpu 500 to 850, but going to 2.4 gig w/rambus memory a noticeable improvement, nice and fast. maybe this pc, will be just for video captures etc, dedicated.

    looks like I'll need to spring for a more expensive multi-output AGP card, any favorites?
  2. Hubert


  3. Hubert


    i have the same board i also thing about replace with an ASUS
    had problem with the GIGabyte
  4. yes, that is interesting to know because I recently had the same problems with a Matrox G550 AGP and Matrox G450 PCI on an Asus P4S533 SiS645 DDR...When it was being assembled I was informed that the G450 was not working with the G550...I dont know for certain that this could not be re-configured or some additional drivers would not fix this problem...But I do know that initially there seemed to be a conflict...

    Also, this motherboard has 6 PCI slots, so I have no idea why there would be a conflict with adding additional video cards as they obviously would not include 6 more slots if this were not intended...
  5. davez


    Hi Ken,

    I have a G450 dual (AGP) and replaced it with the G200 MMS quad (pci) card, and have been thinking that I should try putting them both in together sometime to run 6 monitors.

    Since this combination would only use one PCI slot, maybe that would work for you?

    (PS, still wish I could find your Dec 15 lesson).
  6. stevet


    anyone got a 2.5ghz pentium 4 - dell maybe? - to work with pci cards for multiple monitors?
  7. exe


    It is hard to believe that the higher clock speed P4 would cause problems vs lower clock speed P4s or P3s. The PCI is not controlled nor influenced by the CPU. In fact, it is controlled by the chipset.

    When you encounter problems with installing any kind of PCI card, tech support would usually ask you to switch the card to another slot. Why is that? Because the chipset may have assigned IRQ's to the slot you're having conflicts with. It may be assigned to what the chipset controls, which is every other function on the board, usually audio, LAN, firewire/USB and the other cards you have installed.

    Secondly, not all video cards can be sloted in with other video cards. Some video cards just refuses to function that way. The best way to check is by going to this site and looking at the user databases. See if someone has something that is similar that works.

    When you go look for boards, you firstly decide on CPU make you want. Intel or AMD. Then you make a decision on which chipset you want to go with. There are 3 main ones, Intel, Sis, and Via. For stability and compatability purposes, I go with Intel CPU with Intel chipset. Then you decide which brand of motherboard you want to go with. Safe bets are Intel, Asus, Abit.

    What I write is not the definitive solution to your video card problems, just a guideline when you trouble shoot. But to say a high speed P4 causes problems with multiple video card setup is highly inaccurate.
  8. Ken_DTU


    Perhaps I wasn't clear enough in my first post:

    According to Intel's tech support, which I spoke with on the phone, they told me that P4 motherboards based on the Intel 850E chipset Do have many documented problems with multiple PCI video cards and that no chipset fixes have been developed for this.

    The motherboard in question, giga-byte GA-8IHXP uses this chipset and is the one I'm referring to.

    Additionally, Intel's own tech support told me that P4-based motherboards are dedicating more resources to the processor and less to the PCI bus, which can cause more problems for PCI cards in multimonitor systems.

    Agree re some PCI cards don't work well with each other etc... this is a P4 Intel 850e chipset motherboard specific problem, I'm referring to. And yes, Asus (and Tyan) m'bs are good. Thx re the url
  9. I heard about the same issues via tech support at Dell regarding trying to utilize PCI cards vs the AGP card that I have installed on my Dell P3-750 Dimension.

    I bought a Vision-Tek GeForce Nvdia MX-440 "AGP" graphics card with 64 mb of ram for $114.00 ( 10% Dell discount and free shipping ) and it supports my 2 monitors perfectly, via Windows XP-Pro.

  10. nitro


    I use almost this setup - a G200 Quad and a G550 dual dvi. Works fine for me on a dual Xeon system...

    #10     Sep 15, 2002