Published in Reviews

GTX 590 Quad SLI tested

by on16 April 2011


Users should be aware that a Quad SLI rig requires some planning. Thankfully, Nvidia made things easy by making a shopping guide that we’ll show here:

Graphics Card

Of course, you’ll need two GeForce GTX 590 graphics cards. With SLI, you can mix graphics card manufacturers, so one GTX 590 card from Firm A, and a second GTX 590 card from Firm B is AOK.


GeForce GTX 590 in a Quad SLI configuration requires a SLI-certified motherboard with an extra PCIE slot between the two, double-width cards to ensure both receive enough cool air. If you’re water cooling the cards, you can get by without this extra slot, but for air-based cooling it is a necessity.

The clear air between the two GeForce GTX 590 graphics cards ensures that thermal performance remains within acceptable limits:

Intel X58 Express:
ASUS P6T7 WS Supercomputer
AsusRampage III Extreme
AsusRampage III Formula
Evga X58 FTW3
Gigabyte EX58-Extreme
Gigabyte X58A-UD7
Gigabyte X58A-UD9
MSI X58 Pro-E

Intel P67 Express:
Asus P8P67 Deluxe
Asus P8P67 Pro
Asus P8P67 WS Revolution
AsusSabertooth P67
Gigabyte P67A-UD5
Gigabyte P67A-UD7

Intel P55 Express:
AsusMaximus III Extreme
Evga P55 FTW 200
Gigabyte P55-UD5
MSI Big Bang Trinergy


With the combined power of four GTX 500 GPUs, Quad SLI can be easily bottlenecked by the central processor. Therefore, it’s important in this case to have a fast CPU to get maximum performance. Core i7 CPUs with Turbo Mode enabled are highly recommended, and for even better performance, you may even want to consider overclocking your processor.

Power Supply

Operating a Quad SLI GTX 590 system requires a power supply that has four 8-pin PCI-Express supplementary power connectors, each of which must receive 150 watts. Because of the complexity of designing, building and ensuring that the power supply meets these necessary requirements, NVIDIA works directly with power supply manufacturers to certify their products for Quad SLI use:

SilverStone ST-1500
Nexus RX-1.1K Gold
Thermaltake Toughpower 1500 W
AcBel PC8055 1100 W


A good computer case provides the proper airflow for cooling the graphics cards, without sounding like a jet engine. The optimal chassis has multiple fans that draw in cool air and push out hot air, with a large fan positioned on the door or side panel to blow cool air over the graphics cards. The case must also support an 11 inch graphics cards. As with the power supplies, NVIDIA works with manufacturers to ensure that their cases are certified for use with Quad SLI configurations:

Cooler Master HAF X
Thermaltake Element V
SilverStone Raven RV02


While the right case and air-cooling setup can result in low temperatures in a Quad SLI PC, water cooling can take thermal performance to the next level, resulting in an even cooler, quieter system that can be heavily overclocked. We’ve worked with several of the top water cooling companies in the world to build custom water blocks for the GeForce GTX 590.

System RAM / Operating System

For the best performance possible in a Quad SLI configuration, 6GB of system memory is highly recommended, and because of this the use of a 64-bit operating system is required. Windows 7 64-bit is recommended, though Windows Vista 64-bit will also suffice.

Finally make sure to grab the latest driver for GTX 590 Quad SLI support.

With the correct Quad SLI-certified components and some basic system-building skills, you should be well on your way to a having a great Quad SLI gaming PC, capable of playing games at the highest possible quality settings and resolutions.

Last modified on 16 April 2011
Rate this item
(35 votes)

Read more about: