First things first. Bridgeless SLI... why bother? If the golden fingers are there, use them. On high end cards it clearly makes a difference, and with SLI there's no faffing about with master cards, so it's really no big deal. Still, if there's a problem with the bridge, we've shown the performance impact, which is in some cases substantial.
For CrossFire, there's a little more appeal to not having a dongle. It's not the dongle itself that's the problem, it's the expense of a CrossFire Edition master card. Take the X1900 GT, which at the time of writing weighs in at around £120-150, depending on bundle, cooling and what not. A CrossFire edition card to go with that could be £220 or more. So we must ask if the sacrifice made with dongle-less CrossFire is worth the ~£100 saving? It all depends on whether you want the most from your multi-GPU solution, or if all you really need is a boost that's good value for money. If you're after the latter, we reckon a pair of X1900 GTs might be the wiser option.
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