Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 08:28:58 Wed, January 02, 2008 - 10 Comments
There are some pictures and specs of the newly announced GeForce 8800 GS out there. You should be told about it of course. Apparently only 4 companies will be allowed to create these new cards. The lucky few are Evga, XFX, Asus and Palit. The ones constructed by Palit (and branded by Yeston) have already appeared in their own photo shoot. For the important specifications please click here.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 02:16:51 Thu, January 03, 2008 - 6 Comments
DailyTech is starting out the year with interesting news about some hot GeForce 9000 series action. Apparently the 9600 GT has the same core and shader speeds as the 768MB 8800 GS (650/1,625) and the same memory speed, bandwidth and memory interace as the 8800 GT (900, 57.6GB/s and 256 bit). ChileHardware has some pics from the back of a retail box (I think it is BFG) as well.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 11:06:58 Fri, January 04, 2008 - 24 Comments
[H]ard|OCP has received some 9800 GX2 information from "sources overseas" that they consider trustworthy. The pictures are not the greatest and not all the specs are there but I know you guys will enjoy them anyway!
The 9800 GX2 is similar in design to the GeForce 7950 GX2. There are two PCBs connected together (probably the same way as before, with a socket on one PCB that mates with a plug on the other) and two DL-DVI ports (that are vertically grouped instead of horizontally grouped, so there is one port per PCB I guess).This time the cores will be 2 8800 cores (G80 or G92?) that have been "shrunk to 65nm". I am guessing that they are G92 cores because the 9800 GX2 has 512MB of RAM per core instead of 768MB, and the G92 is already 65nm and therefore is cheaper to use than "shrinking" some G80 cores.
The card will have 256 shader processors and we are told that it will be about 30% faster than a single 8800 Ultra. Like the 7950 GX2, you will be able to use two of these together for a Quad SLI configuration. Lets just hope the driver support is better this time around.
Intrepid commenter Hood has found much nicer pictures of the 9800 GX2 over at Tom's Hardware. They must be seen to be believed!
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 11:33:53 Fri, January 04, 2008 - 5 Comments
[H]ard|OCP has posted a short article listing all the video cards that they know Nvidia is working on for the first half of this year. The information they give about the memory amounts for the 8800 GS (320MB, 512MB, and 640MB) dose not jive with the information that Expreview has in their handy chart though (384MB and 768MB). To view or participate in a discussion about this roadmap, check out this thread.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 12:15:10 Wed, January 09, 2008 - 21 Comments
The intrepid [H]ard|Forum user known as sladesurfer has compiled many nice pictures and slides featuring the HD 3870 X2. He also had provided the links to the sources as well. Now we only need a few more details before we can get our 3870 X2 page up. Hurray!
I just found another thread that links to a video of a HD 3870 X2 machine playing Call of Duty 4 at 2560x1600 with AA. In post 5 you can find an undressed pic of the card and a 3DMark06 score at the default resolution.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 03:11:04 Wed, January 09, 2008 - 6 Comments
If you have Nvidia hardware in your PC (and Steam installed), you can go to this page, click the "Get it Now" link and run the scanning software. It will look for Nvidia "hardware" (Just cards or motherboards too?) and if it finds the Nvidia stuff it will allow you to download a delicious taste of the Valve smash hit, Portal. Apparently there will be a link included in Nvidia drivers in the future as well. I wonder how long this will be available though. It only says "for a limited time".
"More Steam gamers, including myself, play on NVIDIA hardware than any other GPU," said Doug Lombardi, vice president of marketing at Valve. "That's a testament to the company's long history of innovation and quality. By working together with NVIDIA to expand our development, distribution, and marketing efforts, we're increasing our ability to serve the millions of NVIDIA customers logging onto Steam and help us prepare for our next generation of content."
"Valve's endorsement of our technology and tools is yet another example of how the world's leading gaming companies are working with NVIDIA," said Roy Taylor, vice president of content relations at NVIDIA. "Portal is the hottest new, award-winning title from Valve, and we're delighted that Valve will offer First Slice exclusively to GeForce customers."
Portal is very fun you guys. I have played it all the way through and I also completed all the advanced levels. It won Joystiq's game of the year award and it is only about three hours long. Other awards it got this year include:
Game of the Year from Good Game
Game of the Year from Shacknews
Game of the Year from A.V. Club
Game of the Year from Eurogamer
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 04:11:26 Wed, January 09, 2008 - 26 Comments
Bit-tech was at CES 2008 and ran into this overclocked (700/1,700) AGP HD 3850 from Sapphire. It looks like this may be the first DirectX 10.1 video card for your AGP motherboard. Woooooo! Wooo! Woo.
Last night commentor Rasec brought the PowerColor AGP HD 3850 to my attention. He said it was on their site. Then I thought to myself, "Then why did not the parser not grab it for me?". Well it turns out the card is not featured on PowerColor's US/English site (which is what our parser is pulling from) but it is featured on their Global and Australian sites. So without further ado, here it is.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 03:06:50 Thu, January 17, 2008 - 13 Comments
In the parser today there were two 8600 GS cards from MSI just sitting there. Taunting me. Forcing me to investigate so that I could decide where to put them in the database since I have never heard of the 8600 GS before. In the end I came to the conclusion that they are simply 8600 GTs with 400MHz DDR2 (instead of 700MHz GDDR3) and no SLI connector. The core speed and shader speed are the exact same as the 8600 GT.
What I find strange is the need for MSI to make up the 8600 GS name for these. They already have two 8600 GTs that have 400MHz DDR2 on them and guess what? They fricken called them 8600 GTs! Why the ruse MSI? Why are you trying to confuse us?
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 05:23:55 Sun, January 20, 2008 - 21 Comments
There is a large 16 page article on the performance of the 9600 GT when compared to the 8800 GS, 8600 GTS, and a HD 3850. This new card is looking great. It often gets twice the frames per second as the 8600 GTS and it allows you to play at higher resolutions like 1920x1200 and above. Resolutions that the 8600 GTS can't even play the game at! The 9600 GT is also outperforming the 8800 GS and HD 3850 in just about every game. Go check it out!
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 02:16:53 Tue, January 22, 2008 - 11 Comments
We have an English review from FPSLABS and we also have a translated Chinese review from PC Online. Looking at the English review, the only game that the X2 really did well in was Call of Juarez. The X2 did not do much better (and sometimes worse) than the other cards tested. The Chinese review tested more games but they only tested it versuses the 8800 Ultra. The X2 did better in Call of Juarez, Call of Duty 4, Need For Speed 11, Unreal Tournament 3, Serious Sam 2, and F.E.A.R.
Another English review is here but I can't view their snazzy animated charts here at work. :(
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 11:35:04 Wed, January 23, 2008 - 9 Comments
TweakTown has a review up for the MSI HD 3870 X2
. They lavish praise on the card and give it their Editor's Choice Must Have shiny gold award:
"All in all, the card is pretty darn good. How would we make it better? Well as far as the card goes there’s not a lot more to do. Sure you could put GDDR4 on it and increase the clocks more but ultimately what we need is just better support for Crossfire in games. This isn’t a card issue but a software problem which we hope AMD are working on."
I find it strange that they did not include games like Bioshock and Crysis in their review.
Over at VR-Zone, they have some pretty pictures of Asus' HD 3870 X2 cards. They feature special dual fan cooling solutions and they have Company of Heroes included in the box. The reference 3870 X2s have 2 DVI ports, but one of these special Asus cards have 4 DVI ports. That is pretty cool I guess. I wonder why one of them is yellow?
UPDATE: Only one of the Asus HD 3870 X2's has 4 DVI ports. It is the EAH3870X2/G/3DHTI/1G model.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 11:54:14 Wed, January 23, 2008 - 12 Comments
AMD is launching three midrange cards today. They are the HD 3650, HD 3470 and HD 3450. I am currently gathering content about all these cards from the usual suspects for this post, but after I finish that, I will attempt to get these cards added to the database. UPDATE! A freak accident has occured! Mike has added the new chips and cards to the database for me! Now I'll I have to do is add the review and the retail cards. Not being coordinated has never worked so well!
The first coverage I came across is the AMD slides over at [H]ard|OCP. Lately the [H] has been focusing on enthusiast hardware and not mid-range hardware so that is why they are only providing these slides.
Anandtech has a short 4 page introduction article about these new products. They are using two of the slides that were part of the set that [H]ard|OCP posted, and they discuss display port technology and hybrid graphics technology:
"In addition to the hardware specs above, these new parts do introduce some new technologies. Both the 3600 and 3400 lineup support DisplayPort with the first on silicon implementation in the industry. The 3400 series also supports Hybrid Graphics which combines the power of on-board and add-in graphics to increase the potential graphics power for cheap hardware."
The only review I have found so far is from Hot Hardware. They wrote up a 10 page review of a reference HD 3650. I was going to write about how this card compares to the HD 2600 XT, but their paragraph is exactly what I wanted to say:
"The previous generation Radeon HD 2600 XT is available for about $110 to $170 on-line depending on its memory configuration. Despite having a lower price (MSRP $99) and consuming less power (10 Watts less at load), the new Radeon HD 3650 was able to outpace the 2600 XT in a couple of benchmarks (HL2: EP2 and Crysis), and where the 2600 XT pulled ahead it wasn’t by a significant margin."
Posted By: Michael Thomas - 03:18:16 Mon, January 28, 2008 - 7 Comments
Today ATi finally unveils the highly anticipated and oft-rumored 3870 X2. So far the results look very positive. The multi-gpu implementation is reportedly very solid and performance is above an 8800 Ultra (but still shy of 2 8800 GTs). ATi has managed to steal the high end crown from nVidia once more, though I think we all know the X2's stay on the throne will be short (i.e. the impending 9800 GX2).
For now though, the X2 is king, and we have all the reviews and retail card info you could want right here:
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 01:20:09 Mon, January 28, 2008 - 6 Comments
The demons from ChipHell have taken naughty pictures of the GeForce 9800 GX2. I cannot see the pictures at ChipHell, so I recommend techPowerUp! instead. The picture below shows the two PCB layers. The red circles mark the area where the two PCBs are conencted by a ribbon like thingy.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 02:09:17 Mon, January 28, 2008 - 2 Comments
With 24 reviews found so far, I have found 7 sites that have been kind enough to provide the overclocking details of their HD 3870 X2s. I should point out that the reason that [H]ard|OCP and Legit Reviews got the same result is because the ATI Overdrive tool's core and memory sliders would not go beyond 878/955. Without further ado, I present you with my table of awesome.
Posted By: Steve McBarnes - 05:27:20 Tue, January 29, 2008 - 14 Comments
You should all go to this [H]ardware review site that I [H]appen to frequent. If you don't get the [H]int by now, just give up.
UPDATE 1-30-08: The promo code is still working today and the card is still in stock.