Multiple GPU's for rendering?

DoubleEXEL

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Jan 11, 2014
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Hey I have an MSI 770 and do a lot of 3D rendering which takes up a lot of time, I was wondering if I could put a lower end GPU in the system to just speed up rendering a bit I was looking at the lower end of the 700 series? Is that possible or anything along the lines of that?
 

Luca Rood

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Sep 21, 2014
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Well, it is really hard to recommend a GPU setup without knowing what programs/render engines you use. But I would say the 700 series performs pretty well, in most applications.
Now, running SLI is not always recommended, even in multi GPU setups. Some applications can run multiple GPUs without SLI and perform better that way, others run better on SLI, and others don't even support any form of multi GPU. But then again, that depends on the programs you use.
 

DoubleEXEL

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Mostly 3D programs such as Blender and Maya and 3DS Max, I wasn't planning on buying another 770 but a lower end card to help with renders, so not SLI but a second card purely for the processing power not display output? is that possible or is multiple gpu's only available with the same cards?
 

Luca Rood

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Well, in Blender you can choose which card(s) you use as your compute device(s), and you can use a separate card for that, or even multiple cards without SLI (Blender works best with multi-GPU without SLI).

I don't know much about the Autodesk programs, but from what I heard, they only use GPU for the viewport and for simulations. And I guess the viewport is always rendered by the GPU your monitor(s) is(are) plugged into, so for that your extra gpu would not make a difference (unless you use SLI, though you'r planning on getting different GPUs). Maybe Maya/3DS Max allow you to choose which GPU(s) you want to use for simulations, but I don't know if you do that kind of thing.

You didn't say which render engines you'r using with your Autodesk apps, but most popular engines used don't use GPU, so your extra card would not help there either. If your primary focus is Blender Cycles rendering, go for the extra card, it will help a lot! But otherwise the extra card might not even be used.

What are the renderers you use most? Because, if your primary renderers don't use GPU, then the extra card will not even make a difference.
 

DoubleEXEL

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V-Ray and I was looking at Renderman?
 

Luca Rood

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Well, V-Ray doesn't support GPU, but there is also V-Ray RT which does, but is still somewhat feature limited.
And for what I have seen, it looks like RenderMan doesn't support GPU either.

My advice is, if you can acomplish what you want with V-Ray RT, or if you made Blender with Cycles your main software, buy the extra GPU, and run it without SLI. Otherwise, don't even bother about buying an extra GPU.
 

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