GTS 240 SLI, is it worth it?

By David4angel · 14 replies
Oct 19, 2010
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  1. hi all ive recently purchased a alienware desktop with a gts240 card and wondered if its worth adding/sli'ing a 2nd i read somewhere that it would only use 1gb even with the 2 1gb cards in is this right?

    spec is i7 920 and currently 3gb of ram but may add more

    any help appreciated cheers
  2. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,961   +2,516

    It probably would be argued, ( and won successfully). that you should have bought one GT-460. and been done with it. (That or a comparably priced ATI card). Most hard core gamers are actually advising two of these in SLI. That said. if you can get another 240 at a " fire sale price", you might as well go for it. (You mentioned that this is an Alienware machine, so I realize that you may have been at the mercy of their system integrators).

    The net result will probably be better than an 8800GT, a 9800GT, or a single GT 250. I'm just guessing about this, but I don't think it would be as good as a SLI setup, with either an 8800GT or 9800GT.

    Hindsight is always 20/20. but my feeling is, if you wanted or needed this much performance, you should have gone with a GT 460 from the start, and then began the process of pining for Santa to bring you another.
  3. redk

    redk TS Rookie Posts: 91

    If I were you, I'd just OC that card, and wait it out until you have enough cash to buy a better card. SLI isn't even worth it for the performance gain to dollar value.
  4. David4angel

    David4angel TS Rookie Topic Starter

    unfortunately i didnt have the option as i brought this from a shop already made up so couldnt pick the spec on the upside was half price :) anyway i have seen a gts240 card on a certain auction site for about £30 so it seems like a cheap upgrade its just a question of is it worth the bother i dont have any perticularly hardcore games but do have the intention of gettin some

    do you have any ideas about the 2 cards only using the memory of 1?

    i dont know if this makes any difference but im using the computer on my tv as dont have a decent monitor at the moment

  5. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,961   +2,516

    I can't comment on UK pricing. Over here in the colonies, I have seen GT 240s at less than $50.00 USD new. As to Auctions, I personally don't trust them, others may feel differently. As to high resolution, high quality settings on very new games, SLI GT-240s probably won't cut it.

    This sounds like something that is probably true. The upside is that with a lot more throughput, you don't need all 2GBs of memory anyway.

    It makes a difference to extent that it would help to know what resolution the TV is.
  6. redk

    redk TS Rookie Posts: 91

    SLI only uses less RAM than given if the cards aren't a matching pair (IE one is 512 mb and one is 1 GB in RAM, it will only use 512 MB from each card, disregarding the one card's extra 512 MB)
    So if they're both 1 GB cards, it'll use 2 GB of Video RAM to render.
  7. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Technically, with AFR, it'd be rendering with 1GB each frame...either way, it's a moot point; don't worry about it.
  8. redk

    redk TS Rookie Posts: 91

    I just meant it'd be using both GB's.
    But you're right, half will be rendered on each 1 GB Card.
  9. David4angel

    David4angel TS Rookie Topic Starter

    ok cheers probs wont bother with the 2nd card then

    ok i dont understand that much about them but i guess its half right and half wrong

    the tv is a 42" full hd 1080p

    cheers 4 all the help btw
  10. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,961   +2,516

    Obviously, your GT-240 will easily drive the TV for home theater purposes. The gaming issue is not as upbeat.

    Why don't you do some research on the better cards first? That will give you a better insight on how, and when you might be able to spring for a better upgrade.

    We've had several questions asked in relation to using 2 9500GT in SLI. The answer is, that a single 9800GT will easily outperform them. Two GT-240s in SLI presents a better outcome, but I still think you'd be better waiting for a great buy on a single, higher end replacement.
  11. David4angel

    David4angel TS Rookie Topic Starter

    ok cheers i guess i will just stick with the basic games atm then :) thanks for the advice everyone
  12. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,961   +2,516

    Here, have a look at Nvidia's GPU comparison page;

    2 GT 240s would have a bunch of bandwidth, and in SLI, would be a good step up. However, any single GT460 surpasses them.

    I think that HK said you should use a multiplier of about 1.8 times on the single card memory bandwidth, when used in SLI
  13. klepto12

    klepto12 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,115   +9

    even a gtx 450 would make for a better buy imo and would run you around $130
  14. David4angel

    David4angel TS Rookie Topic Starter

    it doesnt actually have the gts 240 on there the gt240 is similar though not quite the same spec,i havent looked at prices for other cards as im pretty sure all of them will be alot more than the 2nd card i saw was, not to worry will just stick with what ive got atm
  15. ElShotte

    ElShotte TS Booster Posts: 163

    If I was you mate, I'd definitely get the second card, and here's why:

    Naturally, the higher-end cards would outperform your SLI setup, but the higher ends cards are also priced alot higher. So if you're looking to do something cheap to boost your performance while you stack up the money for a better card, go for it.

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