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3rd GPU for Area 51 R2

Piffdaddy069

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May 18, 2016
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Hey guys, I'm pretty new to PC gaming but so far I absolutely love my Alienware area 51 R2. No complaints here. So I'm writing today to get some input about putting in a third gtx 980 into my rig. my question is this, I have the 5820k processor in there right now, everyone keeps telling me to get a newer processor for a third card but right now, not really an option I'm willing to spend money on. I got this third gtx 980 for free from my work and id really love to put it into my system. I would upgrade the PSU to 1200w as well from the 850w in there now. Can my processor run 3 cards at once running it at /8x/8x/8x/ since it only has 28 lanes as oppose to the 40 you would get from the processors above? I don't know much about the mobo itself so I'm seeking help from people who own alien wares and might be able to give me more knowledge about this. My main goal is to have a 3 way SLI in this badass machine. Thanks for all of your help in advance.
 

Kanes_Inferno

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Jun 12, 2014
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I'm wondering about this myself. I don't have an Area 51 yet but was looking at getting one with the 5820K in it. I've heard it can't do a three way SLI. I guess my question is does that also mean it can't do 2 way SLI and a 3rd card for physx? To mean that would be amazing to have two and a 3rd dedicated for physx. Wondering before I purchase, thanks.
 

Piffdaddy069

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May 18, 2016
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I can confirm that you may run a third card strictly dedicated the PhysX. just make sure that your power supply unit meets the needs of running 3 cards. I would recommend 1000 watts or above depending on wether you see a need to overclock or not
 

Kanes_Inferno

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You were able to get this up and running with 2 way SLI and one for Physx? Can you post a screen shot of this working? Also, how did you get it set up to work properly?
I can confirm that you may run a third card strictly dedicated the PhysX. just make sure that your power supply unit meets the needs of running 3 cards. I would recommend 1000 watts or above depending on wether you see a need to overclock or not
 

Piffdaddy069

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i have not personally no, I ended up selling my third unused card. but talking to their tech support they confirmed this was able to be done with a large enough power supply. also, i think that running a 980 as a dedicated physx card is more of a waste than a benefit. Not to rain on your parade, its just physx isn't demanding enough to use a whole card in my opinion so to me, the card collects dust in the end since not all games even use Physx. just something to consider but if thats the route you wish to choose I personally have been told by dell that this is an option that can work with a 5820k and all the more power to you if you decide to have a graphics card in use for that :) hope this helps.
 

Piffdaddy069

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to set up properly, just place the card in, you don't need an ski bridge for all 3 cards just for card one and 2 and the third card you choose in your nvidia control panel as a dedicated physx card. its fairly simple as a set up.
 

Kanes_Inferno

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Awesome! Thanks for the answers. This makes me less reserved to buy the 5820K. Didn't want to buy it if that third slot couldn't be used and would be a waste. Knowing I can do that with it, long as I upgrade the power supply is great news. Now, I have heard of many people trying other brand 1500W power supplies in it and them not working.. Do you know what power supply that's 1500w would work?

The issue is I can get a good deal on an AREA 51 with the 5820k with the 850w power supply. I would have zero issues buying a 1500w power supply and upgrading it myself, long as I knew which one worked and didn't have to go through all the trial and error. Any advice on which power supply would work as an upgrade?
 

Piffdaddy069

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I would say go Corsair or EVGA. Both are very reputable. Make sure you know your warranty info when you buy. Also 1500w should be more than enough. Go with atleast silver rating or above, its pricier but it guarantees quality. Also make sure its stating that its "80plus". This is something that is worth spending the extra penny on, bargain shopping on this could result in a short lifespan of you Power Supply Unit and you would be SOL in the end. So just shop amazon to get good deals but know in the end that the pricing does hold a meaning to the value of the unit that you are looking at. Im pretty new to all of this but have gained a lot of knowledge from friends who have been doing this for years. As far as the Area 51 goes, dude the machine is a freakin beast. Worth every penny that I bought it for, screw the haters that say its over priced. I use it for graphic design, video editing and gaming in 4k and it has yet to let me down. Plus dell is very reputable and I never once had a buyers remorse for my machine. I invested up to 5k on mine and honestly I'm glad I did. I chose this over a stacked Mac Pro and quickly learned that Apple products are just poo. never going back and feel very welcomed the world of the PC master race. Oh and might I add, I also have an oculus rift and it works like a charm on the machine. GTA V in VR is life bro, life.
 
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Kanes_Inferno

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I would say go Corsair or EVGA. Both are very reputable. Make sure you know your warranty info when you buy. Also 1500w should be more than enough. Go with atleast silver rating or above, its pricier but it guarantees quality. Also make sure its stating that its "80plus". This is something that is worth spending the extra penny on, bargain shopping on this could result in a short lifespan of you Power Supply Unit and you would be SOL in the end. So just shop amazon to get good deals but know in the end that the pricing does hold a meaning to the value of the unit that you are looking at. Im pretty new to all of this but have gained a lot of knowledge from friends who have been doing this for years. As far as the Area 51 goes, dude the machine is a freakin beast. Worth every penny that I bought it for, screw the haters that say its over priced. I use it for graphic design, video editing and gaming in 4k and it has yet to let me down. Plus dell is very reputable and I never once had a buyers remorse for my machine. I invested up to 5k on mine and honestly I'm glad I did. I chose this over a stacked Mac Pro and quickly learned that Apple products are just poo. never going back and feel very welcomed the world of the PC master race. Oh and might I add, I also have an oculus rift and it works like a charm on the machine. GTA V in VR is life bro, life.

Nice! Thanks for all of the tips! I currently have an Aurora R4 and a 15 R2, they're both solid machines..loving them...But just have been wanting an Area 51 for a long time, I might just pull the trigger soon! Oculus Rift? Now I'm jealous! haha, full of envy right now.
 

Piffdaddy069

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Rift is awesome, an insane experience, the ONLY problem that I have with it so far is the games list is kind of weak, you have to use a third party app to make games like GTA V and fallout 4 work on it, and that the resolution is short of 1080p. Maybe I'm spoiled over here but I'm used to 4k graphics and it saddens me to see something below 1080p so I would say its a safe bet to wait on VR until Gen 2 arrives with a headset with a better resolution. And yes, VR can make you motion sick, I can't even play Adr1ft for 5 mins without feeling like crap. But as time goes on, you get used to it and you get a hardened stomach with the more exposure you put yourself through. Its a weird sensation honestly. But I can confirm that the Area 51 machine is a go for VR. Def go with the area 51 man, you won't regret it. It is very customizable, the motherboard is the only tricky thing to customize because its a custom one for the machine made by alienware but honestly its an x99 mobo and those are the way to go anyways. It can be swapped if you know how to tinker with machines, I currently do not feel safe swapping mine out nor do I see a need to. All the other parts are so easy to swap they really did make it simple for the user. The cooling system is superb and it does not generate much noise at all. I am def all for this machine and its just beautiful looking in the end. I catch myself starring at it a lot lol. She's a beast!
 

Kanes_Inferno

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Rift is awesome, an insane experience, the ONLY problem that I have with it so far is the games list is kind of weak, you have to use a third party app to make games like GTA V and fallout 4 work on it, and that the resolution is short of 1080p. Maybe I'm spoiled over here but I'm used to 4k graphics and it saddens me to see something below 1080p so I would say its a safe bet to wait on VR until Gen 2 arrives with a headset with a better resolution. And yes, VR can make you motion sick, I can't even play Adr1ft for 5 mins without feeling like crap. But as time goes on, you get used to it and you get a hardened stomach with the more exposure you put yourself through. Its a weird sensation honestly. But I can confirm that the Area 51 machine is a go for VR. Def go with the area 51 man, you won't regret it. It is very customizable, the motherboard is the only tricky thing to customize because its a custom one for the machine made by alienware but honestly its an x99 mobo and those are the way to go anyways. It can be swapped if you know how to tinker with machines, I currently do not feel safe swapping mine out nor do I see a need to. All the other parts are so easy to swap they really did make it simple for the user. The cooling system is superb and it does not generate much noise at all. I am def all for this machine and its just beautiful looking in the end. I catch myself starring at it a lot lol. She's a beast!

Any idea what temps it normally runs during hardcore gaming session? Yeah, sounds like I should wait on gen 2 for VR gaming then. Any experience with the HTC Vive?

What specs do you have on your Area 51?
 

Piffdaddy069

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May 18, 2016
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not sure about the temps tbh.

My specs are:

Area 51 Desktop
5820k hexacore processor i7 Liquid cooled
64gb of RAM
512gb SSD-Crucial
1tb SSD-Samsung
4tb HDD 7200 RPM-Hitachi
Nvidia GTX 980 (2-SLI) Gygabite g1 gaming OC Edition
Windows 10 OS
850w Power Supply Unit-Corsair
Vizio 46 inch 4k monitor
Oculus Rift CV1 Model
Corsair gaming keyboard & Mouse
Xbox One Elite Gaming Controller

No experience with the vive unfortunately. I had a hard time getting a rift close to its release so i grabbed it when I could.
 

Kanes_Inferno

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Jun 12, 2014
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64GB of ram!? Daaaaang!!! That's nice! Good HD space, too. Very nice, very nice!
Which corsair keyboard and mice are you using? Just curious!
So, the two 980s run well then?
 

Piffdaddy069

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May 18, 2016
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they run perfect. and yeah 64gb of ram was overkill but multi monitor set ups might require it one day. The mouse is the m65 pro RGB and the keyboard is the k70.
 

Kanes_Inferno

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That keyboard seems insanely nice, might look into that for a future purchase! That mouse seems similar to my Roccat Kone XTD. Thanks for all of your input in the Area 51, still exploring my options.
 

Piffdaddy069

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May 18, 2016
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I would honestly go with one of the bendy SLI things for measurement purposes. You can really see inside the PC anyways so i don't think an Nvidia official and pretty looking slim connector is worth 50 bucks when you can get a bendy intel one for like $20 at your local pc store or micro center. Thats just my opinion although i have no0 way to verify that the measurements between the two cards is the same measurements that this SLI bridge connectors sit.
 
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