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At what range is a PhysX Card useful

Discussion in 'Graphics Cards' started by FatRakoon, 4 Jun 2010.

  1. FatRakoon


    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,198

    Location: Behind you... Naked!

    Ok, hopefully a simple question.

    Ok, I have a number of PCs and I am about to start plonking about with a PhysX card.

    Dont know why... Dont know why not either?

    Ok, so basically the nVidia cards that I have right now are

    GTX 250

    Now, its pretty much a given that the GTX's wont benefit from a card as they both have it built in, but would it take "some" of the load off? - would it help at all or not?

    The 8800GTS, is again, considering its the 320MB Point of View model, its possibly the slowest too, but again, its a fairly competant card.
    Would this benefit from a PhysX card?

    Now, the real one...

    I currently have 2x7800GTX cards in my Opteron 175 PC. I have just bought a new EVGA Mobo with 3 PCIE Slots so I assume that a PhysX card would be beneficial for them, but they are also struggling to play anythign half decent as it is... I am however also going to be using a Q6600 and 2x2GB instead of the Opteron so that will surely help on the CPU front.

    I also have a pair of 8600GT carsd that like a dumb fool, I only bought a couple of weeks ago in a fit on *******-ness and so, before they go off to "That place we sell crud on" I might have a kick with using one or even two of thosewith a PhysX card.

    But, at what point does the card actually become useful? and then at what point does it become a total waste of time?
  2. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 13 Oct 2006

    Posts: 75,407

    Most PhysX titles are fairly graphically intensive already... i.e. batman, mirrors edge... really its only any point with a setup similiar to GTX2xx and higher with a 9600GT or higher for PhysX and right now there aren't enough titles to make it worth doing any way unless you haven't played through Batman AA yet.
  3. FatRakoon


    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,198

    Location: Behind you... Naked!

    No, the only title that I do have, that does indeed seem to make a difference when you ENABLE / DISABLE PhysX is UnReal Tournament III

    It is definitely nicer to see how the characters etc react in a more lifelike way when you kill them ( when I pay enough attention to see it rather than be it )

    Lifelike when you kill them...?

    anyway, yes I suppose you are right... PhysX capable games already need a card that is more than capable of doing it anyway, thus meaning that a PhysX card itself is pretty much useless.

    Batman AA ? - No. I might add it to my list then... My next game is DOW2 - Chaos
  4. FatRakoon


    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,198

    Location: Behind you... Naked!

    Ha! what a load of crap.

    The PhysX card came today and yes I see what you mean.

    This thing either does not work, or its simply NOT doing anything worth while?

    Not compared to the bigger cards anyway.

    I dont expect games will run better, I dont, but I at least hoped that I would see some kind of effcet on having it on a lesser card in UT3 but I am simply not seeing any difference at all?

    Also another annoying point is that I wanted to try it with my 2x7800 however there is simply no way that this card will fit onto the board alongside both 7800GTX Cards unless I close the gap between them to 1mm

    Ah well, had to be worth a laugh if nothing else.

    Oh, and its PCI not PCIE too so thats also make me kick myself cos I could use it if it was PCIE
  5. Sc00p007


    Joined: 23 Feb 2009

    Posts: 709


    Are you using a physx ppu card? When i had one, at some point after nvidia took over ageia, the driver updates stopped working. I had to use very old drivers to make the card work. I dont know if it is the same now, maybe they stopped supporting the actual physx cards.

  6. MeMeMeMe


    Joined: 3 Oct 2009

    Posts: 2,719

    If you're using one of the old Aegia PPU cards, then it won't do anything. NVidia officially stopped supporting them some time ago, and no longer include support in their drivers. They are basically switched off.
  7. FatRakoon


    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,198

    Location: Behind you... Naked!

    That was lucky.. I clicked on unsubscribe from thread and I thought I had been kicked off again for yet another unknown OCUK reason. LOL


    Basically switched off?

    Yep, I can go with that.

    Its still a tad unfair though isnt it really?

    I mean, they never truly had a chance and so, what was the idea of them ? Simply to grab a few extra quid from the masses?

    Anyway, I am still going to have a play about...
    Its a BFG AEGIA Card... 128MB / 128Bit... Loooks exactly like... Well. a 6600GT I suppose, and has a fan, but of course the backplate is blank... Also has a Molex Power connector too!

    I paired it up with my XFX6600 in the DFI LanParty Mobo but that trying to play UT3 was...Well, it wasnt!

    I wanted to play with the 2x7800GTX in SLI mode with it, but alas it wont fit into the PC unless I take out the Sound Card and use onboard and the benefits of a PhysX card will be lost because the O/B Audio is really jerky and poor, so I will just try out on of them tomorrow, but after that, Im just going to accept that its another wasted component.


    One other question actually...

    I keep hearing that person X has been using CARD Y as a PhysX card instead of as a normal Graphics card... How is this done?

    For example, can I plop in a 8800GTS ( 320MB / Point Of View ) into the second PCIE slot in my DS4 alongside my 295GTX and use the 8800 as a PhysX card ?

    Is it worth even considering - will the 8800 take enough of a load off it?

    I mean, every game I have plays 100% perfectly anyway with absolutely everythign on full, so its probably a waste of time, but its just somethign I fancy toying with?
  8. blackninja

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 13 Nov 2007

    Posts: 1,483

    PhysX kills performance - my batman AA fps plummeted from 200+fps to about 100+fps when I added my 256mb 8800gt alongside my setup, his cape moved well though :D
  9. gurusan


    Joined: 2 Sep 2006

    Posts: 13,489

    Location: Portland, OR

    "PhysX" and "useful" used together in the same sentence? :confused:
  10. boosfuk


    Joined: 27 Nov 2002

    Posts: 707

    Location: Warwickshire

    If I remember the cape effect was not PhysX accelerated. It was hard coded to be the same on all platforms using CPU acceleration. Wasn't the Batman support just for eye candy such as the paper and banners/flags?
  11. BassPwr


    Joined: 30 Apr 2008

    Posts: 388

    Location: Kent, England, UK

    Nothing personal, but you aren't most likely a mug who just bought that card off the MM are you from ChrisLandin? as he wasted his time also like you with a BFG physx card which offered very little improvement and found it was no longer supported by nvidia.


    8800 cards are excellent to be used as a physx card and should offer fantastic performance as long as your PSU can support 2 power hungry cards. You just set what card you want to handle physx in the nvidia driver.

    If your main graphics card is able to handle games with physx enabled fine at a smooth enough fps for you then you might not want to bother with a secondary card for physx. I tried cryostasis the other night with my 8800gtx at 1280x1024 with physx enabled and it's playable enough.
  12. FatRakoon


    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,198

    Location: Behind you... Naked!

    ...Looks away whistling innocently...

    Erm, what? errr no, that was another FatRakoon

    I knew I wont be getting any massive boost. I know that putting it with my bigger cards is not something that I will do seriously, thats silly, but I still want to fiddle about.. I love doing it.

    Its like SLI

    I got a pair of 6600GT then 7600GT just to compare and more recently a pair of 8600GT - again, only for a laugh.

    I also want to plonk about with crossfire, just to know that I have done it. I finally got hold of an X1900Crossfire card to go with one of my X1900XT cards and I dont expect them to beat any of my high end single cards, but I still want to play about you know...

    I know that the PhysX card isnt going to rock my gaming world, but I certainly expected more than its given me.. Which is not much at all.