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 Post subject: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:19 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2011 2:57 am
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I want a low cost, passively cooled card for an office machine. It needs to be able to run Aero smoothly at 2560 x 1440, and I'm assuming the GT 610 and HD 6450 are capable of that, right?

Anyway, I'd like your opinions on which card to get. Any known bugs in either? I'm leaning towards the GT 610 because I prefer NVIDIA's drivers.

I had intended on using the CPU's IGP, but then I saw this:

http://communities.intel.com/thread/300 ... 0&tstart=0


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:53 pm 
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That's driver related imho.

There's still a bug (acknowledged bug in driver, but no fix until today) out there regarding older intel onboard vga, if making the "wrong" of two attached monitors the prime one, the second monitor is going black and system reverts to having just one monitor.

This driver (no-) update policy seems to be intel standard. In the past intel showed to us that having the best cpu engineers doesn't necessarily mean having the best graphic drivers.


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:15 pm 
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Pappnaas wrote:
That's driver related imho.

There's still a bug (acknowledged bug in driver, but no fix until today) out there regarding older intel onboard vga, if making the "wrong" of two attached monitors the prime one, the second monitor is going black and system reverts to having just one monitor.


I believe it could be something that needs to be addressed by both Intel in their drivers and possibly in the motherboard BIOS too. It seems like the IGP is sometimes starved of voltage.

But it also seems to be a recurring theme in some dedicated GPUs too - overzealous power saving schemes causing flicker/drop outs when using aero at large resolutions. In fact, I've just about decided to forget the GT 610 and HD 6450, and get a mid range card. I even saw a thread where people were having similar desktop issues with an HD7700 series card (another one with very aggressive power saving). For all those at 1080p etc. its probably a non issue, but I need to be sure that a card can handle aero at 2560 x 1440.

Pappnaas wrote:
This driver (no-) update policy seems to be intel standard. In the past intel showed to us that having the best cpu engineers doesn't necessarily mean having the best graphic drivers.


I've lost a lot of faith in Intel recently. Buggy 320 SSD, sandy Bridge Chipset recall, useless IGP drivers and their MEI causing boot loop issues in certain last gen motherboards. At least my Intel NICs haven't given me any grief.


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:57 am 
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The only thing a mid-range gaming card gets you is the ability to run games, not an improvement in 2D display. Any modern card that has DisplayPort, Dual DVI, or even VGA can run your monitors. Here's the spec page from the HD 6450.

................................................
DisplayPort 1.2
Max resolution: 2560x1600 per display
Multi-Stream Transport
21.6 Gbps bandwidth
High bit-rate audio
HDMI 1.4a with Stereoscopic 3D Frame Packing Format, Deep Color, xvYCC wide gamut support, and high bit-rate audio
Max resolution: 1920x1200
Dual-link DVI with HDCP
Max resolution: 2560x1600
VGA
Max resolution: 2048x1536
...................................................

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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:21 am 
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CA_Steve wrote:
The only thing a mid-range gaming card gets you is the ability to run games, not an improvement in 2D display. Any modern card that has DisplayPort, Dual DVI, or even VGA can run your monitors. Here's the spec page from the HD 6450.

That's almost true but not quite. Some low-end card ship with useless memory bandwidth, and with those you can indeed get into trouble just for running aero. This was at least the case with HD5450 where some manufacturers decided it would be a brilliant idea to ship with 32bit ddr2, and as far as I can tell there are HD6450 around with very low-clocked 32bit ddr3 where aero might be equally problematic. Needless to say such memory configurations drop performance way below that of any of the more modern IGPs (as they have only roughly 1/6 the memory bandwidth of your typical dual-channel ddr3-1600 configuration), they might in fact not have enough bandwidth just for display scanout (at least with multiple displays), leading potentially to display flicker (a 4MP display needs roughly 1GB/s bandwidth just for scanout, and those ubercrappy cards have only 4GB/s - that might still work but probably not with 2 displays, as you will get errors way before you consume all bandwidth just for scanout).
Oh and that bandwidth figure for the 6450 is only for the gddr5 review edition. I have never seen a single hd6450 card for sale which has gddr5 memory (though supposedly at least sapphire makes one), typically you get 64bit ddr3-1333 (for ~10GB/s bandwidth which should be enough to run aero but really drops performance below that of HD4000 (and possibly even below that of HD3000)).
So for just running Aero I'd highly recommend using IGP instead of getting such crappy cards. Note though that with intel igps for that resolution you need to use a board and monitor with displayport connections, since intel's dvi outputs are all single-link only and therefore will NOT work (same for hdmi). Well it may or may not work with VGA (not sure there but in theory it could) but clearly you really don't want to do that.
But yes HD6450 and GT610 should work fine too, provided they've got 64bit ddr3 (ideally with high memory clock but you're lucky to find either one with reference clock the manufacturers save every single penny they can) memory.


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 12:01 pm 
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mczak wrote:
CA_Steve wrote:
The only thing a mid-range gaming card gets you is the ability to run games, not an improvement in 2D display. Any modern card that has DisplayPort, Dual DVI, or even VGA can run your monitors.

So for just running Aero I'd highly recommend using IGP instead of getting such crappy cards.

Note though that with intel igps for that resolution you need to use a board and monitor with displayport connections, since intel's dvi outputs are all single-link only and therefore will NOT work (same for hdmi). Well it may or may not work with VGA (not sure there but in theory it could) but clearly you really don't want to do that.
mczak, you seem to have a high level of sophisticated knowledge about the subtleties of video performance.

Is there any particular configuration or type of IGP or video card that get the last bit of speed out of a 2D or aero video display... at small or at large resolutions, with one or with two monitors?

ie., what is way to get the absolutely fastest graphics display for non-gaming purposes? What are the performance variables that govern this facet of video performance?

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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:29 pm 
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CA_Steve wrote:
The only thing a mid-range gaming card gets you is the ability to run games, not an improvement in 2D display. Any modern card that has DisplayPort, Dual DVI, or even VGA can run your monitors. Here's the spec page from the HD 6450.

................................................
DisplayPort 1.2
Max resolution: 2560x1600 per display
Multi-Stream Transport
21.6 Gbps bandwidth
High bit-rate audio
HDMI 1.4a with Stereoscopic 3D Frame Packing Format, Deep Color, xvYCC wide gamut support, and high bit-rate audio
Max resolution: 1920x1200
Dual-link DVI with HDCP
Max resolution: 2560x1600
VGA
Max resolution: 2048x1536
...................................................


I think you're missing the point. Look at the link I posted. The HD4000 IGP also claims 2560x1600 as it's max resolution, but the problem is that some people are getting flickering or drop-outs at resolutions over 1920x1200 (in fact someone was even having trouble at that resolution too). It's an issue with the IGP's power saving/idle mode. I've been looking into low end GPUs as an alternative to the IGP, but I've noticed suspiciously similar complaints from people trying to run larger resolutions on then. I think the manufacturers are getting carried away with super low power saving modes, and neglecting to thoroughly test the cards with high res monitors. So by getting a mid range card like the GTX550Ti, which uses less aggressive 'power saving' at idle/desktop (and is just more powerful to start with), I would expect to avoid these issues.


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:17 pm 
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Location: Germany
Using a vga card doesn't necessarily mean better picture quality. Back in the days where the blue vga connectors ruled our world, we'd go and buy Matrox cards because they had the highest rate of "stable" analog picture quality.

So, using a middle class card does nothing better than using a lower class card, as you are using 2D only. There are still quality differences regarding output quality while using dvi or displayport, but i havn't read any sources for a while that test picture quality of vga cards. All websites seem to be pleased to point out that card A reaches 14 frames more than card B on a total of 140ish frames per second.

But no word about actual picture quality. Is "picture quality" a no concern with modern digital connections?

On a side note: Changing your dvi/displayport cables to higher quality models could help, but that probably doesn't change anything if your problem is driver/silicon related.


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 2:59 am 
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Oubadah wrote:
So by getting a mid range card like the GTX550Ti, which uses less aggressive 'power saving' at idle/desktop (and is just more powerful to start with), I would expect to avoid these issues.


Looking through the Intel thread, the hobbiest fix was to raise the idle GPU voltage a bit. Intel commented on replicating the problem and working on a fix (via BIOS update). I did a search on the HD 6450 and screen flicker/video loss and didn't come across anything specific to this part. I did come across an HP ZR2740W monitor thread where HP noted incompatibility with ATI that was fixed with an update this spring.

I can't comment on whether the GTX550Ti "uses less aggressive 'power saving'". The idle/2D voltage and clock rates will be set by each card mfgr.

Seems like it'd be easier to either wait for an Intel bios update or just adjust the gpu idle voltage in the bios yourself. Otherwise, you might have a gfx card lottery.

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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2012 4:35 am 
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ces wrote:
Is there any particular configuration or type of IGP or video card that get the last bit of speed out of a 2D or aero video display... at small or at large resolutions, with one or with two monitors?

ie., what is way to get the absolutely fastest graphics display for non-gaming purposes? What are the performance variables that govern this facet of video performance?

Well leaving the crappy no-bandwidth cards aside I think any differences in aero performance will quickly go unnoticed with faster cards. That said, aero performance most likely will scale linearly with available memory bandwidth, not really the amount of shader units (or even type of GPU) (desktop compositing doesn't require any significant amount of geometry, you've got large rectangles with more or less trivial shaders using alpha blend so the bandwidth required per math operations is way higher than in your typical game).
And even the very crappy no-bandwidth cards probably appear fast enough with a single display and modest resolution (1x1920x1200 is going to be 4 times as fast 2x2560x1600).
As for video everybody these days has special hw in the gpu to accelerate this, so it really shouldn't be an issue. It is known though some of the video quality enhancements AMD and nvidia (not sure about intel) can do aren't available with the slowest cards (on the amd side IIRC it is again more a problem of lack of memory bandwidth) but most likely you'd never notice.


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2012 5:42 am 
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mczak wrote:
And even the very crappy no-bandwidth cards probably appear fast enough with a single display and modest resolution (1x1920x1200 is going to be 4 times as fast 2x2560x1600).

Are you sure? :p

viewtopic.php?f=19&t=63443


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2012 8:11 pm 
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Posts: 144
Olaf van der Spek wrote:
mczak wrote:
And even the very crappy no-bandwidth cards probably appear fast enough with a single display and modest resolution (1x1920x1200 is going to be 4 times as fast 2x2560x1600).

Are you sure? :p

viewtopic.php?f=19&t=63443

Oh I was aware of that thread, but I thought you had some higher resolution, I guess not then :-).
Well all the more reason to stay away from such cards...


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 Post subject: Re: GT 610 vs HD 6450
PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:29 am 
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I'm using the GT 420 at work with a 2560x1440 monitor, and due to the GT 420's tremendous power saving abilities, it can clock itself almost completely down. This though causes 2D performance of Aero to be reduced so much, that dragging around windows are not smooth. On the Intel HD2000 on a 1920x1200 monitor, and HD4000 on multimonitor setup of 2560x1440+1280x1024 it's very smooth. I wish there was a way to completely disable the powersaving of the Nvidia GPU. I have tried setting 3D-settings to performance, but that's not locking it at high performance settings.

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