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Author Topic: Dell 5970 reports 3 cores, other 5970 not working - crossfire problem?  (Read 1229 times)
deepDown
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March 13, 2012, 01:48:16 PM
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Hi guys,

I just got two used ATI OEM 5970 from eBay, the seller says they were bought together in a Dell Aurora system. They are the ones that have the metal handle on rear of the backplate.

In short, one of them doesn't boot at all, no BIOS screen nor anything, the other shows 3 cores!! in BAMT (atitweak). The seller claims that the non-working one is configured as 'slave' in CrossFire so I need to start them in CF configuration with both cards in 16x pci-e slots to make them both work.

Is this a plausible story? If so, will it be enough to find a computer with 2x pciEx16 CF mobo and disable CF on the secondary card - so it can work solo?


The thing is that I have a rig with watercooled Sapphire 5970, CoolerMaster RealPower Pro 850 (750W at 12V) and nothing much more except i5 on asus P7P55D-E LX motherboard, and usb stick with BAMT. The problem is that the MB has only one 16x pci-e slot. But I had tried many Radeon 5xxx and 6xxx with the extender in pci-e 1x slots and they all worked no problem - including two Sapphire 5970 and that before-mentioned 3 core ATI OEM 5970. So it is a problem for me to find a proper high-perf CF enabled mobo - and would prefer a solution without it.

Little more details:
I tried putting both cards as secondary, connected to pci-e 1x->16x extender, and with Chieftec 1000W PSU, just to be on the safe side. The 3-core card works and mines normally in BAMT, boots in Windows and I can see one core (no CF cable) or 2 cores (with CF cable).  In BAMT aticonfig shows 2 cores on new card, atitweak shows 3 cores, the same as modified radeonvolt.
With problematic card BAMT boots, but can not start Xserver - aticonfig shows 2 cores, atitweak can't work without X, modified radeonvolt shows only 1 core. Windows hangs at logo screen. It can boot into the safe mode and shows 2 cores with CF cable connected.


Both cards have the same BIOS: (and on both cores they have master BIOS, if that might be the problem)

GPU Device Id: 0x1002 0x689C
113-C00001M-102
HEMLOCK MASTER XT BIOS Rev B UCODEv:1195
(C) 1988-2005, ATI Technologies Inc.
ATOMBIOSBK-ATI VER012.013.000.002.000000
SC00001M.102

I would prefer not to change BIOS if possible, as the seller claims he didn't touch it - and I don't want to get into dispute about that if I decide to return them.

Thanks
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March 13, 2012, 01:51:52 PM
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I have never seen a card show as having 3 GPUs.

The story about needing cross fire is crap.

With or without crossfire enabled both cards should be bootable and appear as two independent GPUs to the OS. 

Both cards having master BIOS is a good indication the previous owner fubared the card with some flashing.
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March 13, 2012, 02:36:42 PM
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Yupp, I am thinking along the same lines - he screwed BIOSes somehow.

I was just confused with those 3 cores reported by atitweak. And the fact that there is only master 119.5 BIOS in techPowerUp archive.

Also, I remember reading here that someone had problems with Dell 5970 cards - I can't find it now - it was about buggy drivers or maybe they weren't working in Linux? Anyone can help me find that post/person?
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March 13, 2012, 11:39:24 PM
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If both show as master then someone definitely flashed it. Flash it with a slave and you will be good to go.
I accidentally flashed a 6950 unlocked shader bios to my 5970 while at a remote location.I had to jump the flash chip to
even get any flash software to write to the bios after that. It's back alive but was a fun adventure.
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March 14, 2012, 12:04:38 AM
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  I've seen one of my 5970s exhibit this bug without any flashing or mis-flashing actually.  It was sent back for RMA / repair. 

  Generally once the drivers are installed, you should see four GPUs (for your two cards) show up in monitoring software. 

  It could be a bad flash as you said but just saying I've seen it happen by default.  Whether this is actually due to a bad BIOS or a hardware issue though is something I am waiting to find out.

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