Are 2 gpu better then 1 strong one?

ServiceDesk
ServiceDesk used Ask the Experts™
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2xRTX 4000 vs 1xRTX 5000?
Building a workstation for our creative team.

Do all the following software have the ability to us 2 cards? Is the thought process in saying 2 cards processing is more powerful then 1 correct?

Software used
1. Autodesk . 3DS max 2018
plugin (Vray 3.6 )
2. Adobe photoshop
3. Adobe illustrator
4. Adobe fuse
5. Adobe after effects
+ all the typical plugins
6. Cinema 4d
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018

Commented:
I have not seen this done. We have Adobe stuff running at one client, Autodesk and Adobe at another. One GPU and a very strong i7 CPU with lots of memory. No one is hampered.
Paul MacDonaldDirector, Information Systems

Commented:
Two cards has the obvious advantage of not leaving you stranded if one fails, presuming you're using more than one monitor.  Generally speaking, two cards can outperform a single one, but there are too many variations of generation, SLI/Crossfire, and drivers to make a practical evaluation.

Cost and power requirements are cons to using two video cards versus one.

You might try building one of each, then running benchmarks from some of your manufacturers (Autodesk and Cinema 4D have them) to see which performs better for your specific needs.  Then just return the losing kit.
HelpDesk Technician
Commented:
Hello ServiceDesk,

Usually this is a complicated question. In the past bridging two GPUs over SLI or a similar technology didn't grant as big a boost as most would desire, and some applications could not utilize multiple GPUs. In general, in the past I'd almost always recommend a single powerful card over two cards.

However, with Nvidia's recent NVLink multi-GPU technology you get much closer to actually fully utilizing the power of all of your GPUs in your set up.


In this specific instance, I would definitively say that I believe you'd be better off with two RTX 4000's bridged over NVLink. The RTX 5000 is more than twice the price of a single RTX 4000, but does not yield twice the performance. Most benchmarks show between a 15% and a 35% increase in performance.

Two RTX 4000s would be far cheaper and more powerful than a single RTX 5000. This would be my choice, most definitely.


EDIT: However it is worth noting, as David has said, that not all software can utilize multiple GPUs. After some research it appears that Adobe software do not utilize multiple GPUs, and Cinema 4D does best with multiple GPUs when using a 3rd party renderer. It's also worth noting that these Adobe software aren't as influenced by the GPU performance as one may think.

However, Autodesk certainly benefits from using multiple GPUs over NVLink. I would still recommend against an RTX 5000 simply because of the lack of bang for your buck there.
David FavorFractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
It's fairly rare for any software to leverage GPUs at this point.

Software leveraging multiple GPUs will likely be similar to finding a unicorn.

Before considering the correct investment into single or multiple GPU hardware, be sure to check specs carefully to ensure your software actually supports one or multiple GPUs.
Top Expert 2016

Commented:
bitcoin miners still will use multiple gpu's but since the serious player have moved onto using specialized asic's it's no longer cost effective.  I have 50 bitcoins in a wallet somewhere in my collection of disks. I've had them for almost 9 years.

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