BFG GeForce 9800 GTX H2OC review
Posted by Hilbert Hagedoorn on: 07/14/2008 01:00 PM [ 0 comment(s) ]
Deeper inside the graphics card
The GeForce 9800 GTX is based on the same microprocessor as the GeForce 9800 GX2 and for that matter the same as GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB. They're all products developed with a chip called G92 (codename).
The G92 silicon is based on NVIDIA's newer 0.65nm silicon. It is a respin chip based on last years architecture from the GeForce 8800 series. See while this GPU architecture is 95% the same as the good old G80 (GTS/GTX/Ultra) core there are some very distinct differences.
The first being the fabrication process. It was moving from 90nm towards 65nm, meaning a smaller die-size, likely resulting in lower core voltages, better energy efficiency and perhaps better clock speeds. Important to know is that the G92 is based on the same chip that the 8800 GTS 512MB has, which means that the GPU on the 9800 GTX also has 128 shader processors. How many transistors do the NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GTX GPUs have you ask ? 754 million transistors.
Interestingly, if you take a peek at the clock speeds you'd might even think that one G92 GPU could beat a GTX. Well shader processors are not the only part of the equation, because at the end of the pipeline there are these things called ROPs, and that's where the old GTS (20 ROPs), and this G92 (16 ROPs) become a little castrated compared to the GTX (24 ROPs).
Next to that, the G92 is utilizing memory differently compared to the older 8800 GTX. The 8800 GTX is addressing the memory bus faster (384-bit) as opposed to the G92 with 256-bit, and that's less memory bandwidth to play around with.
In reality the performance differential between the two cards is small though, as our benchmarks will show. Though higher resolutions with high AA levels would give the older 8800 GTX with more memory and a faster memory bus the advantage.
So in summary, the new features of G92 opposed to the G80: 65nm fabrication process, silicon optimizations (compression algorithms), usage of 256-bit memory, and compared to the older GTS models a higher shader processor count at 128 sub-cores. The core frequency runs at 675 MHz, the shader processors at 1675 MHz and the memory at 2200 MHz effectively (70.4 Gbps memory bandwidth); mind you that these are reference speeds.
Also the new Series 9 cards are Hybrid Power ready, meaning on future Hybrid mainboards this card can deactivate itself (saving power). One more advantage for the 9800 GTX is that you can go three-way SLI with it.
Um .. what is that GeForce 9800 GTX+ then ??
To counteract the new Radeon 4850 products NVIDIA decided to swiftly create another SKU in the market called NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GTX+
Pretty much it is faster clocked NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GTX, and next to that ... the price is dropping pretty significantly towards a suggested retail price of $229 USD. Even better news, the GeForce 9800 GTX will drop towards 199 USD, matching the Radeon HD 4850. You just have to like the competition as it's definitely going to be interesting to purchase a higher specced mid-range card as they'll get you excellent performance for the money you pay.
The GeForce 9800 GTX+ takes the G92-based GeForce 9800 GTX and offers value for value conscious gamers. Key product points:
- GeForce 9800 GTX+ is the best single card price/performance at $229; the original GeForce 9800 GTX will transition to $199
- Shader Processor clock of 1836MHz and graphics core clock of 738MHz
- Support for 2-way and 3-way SLI
Today we are looking at a product based on the 65nm GTX 9800 part.
BFG have worked their magic again and teamed up with the guys and gals from CoolLIT systems, a company designing sometimes awkward yet always interesting cooling products. As such BFG released two products based on CoolIT's cooling; here at Guru3D we will test and review the BFG GeForce GTX 295 H2OC (limited edition), that's a self-contained easy to install liquid cooling solution preinstalled onto the GeForce GTX 295 filled with coolant and everything; this kit has a 120mm fan, radiator, pump, graphics card cooling block, tubing and reservoir all ready to be inserted into the PC for some tender love and care in your gaming experience.
BFG GeForce GTX 295 H20 review (water cooling)
BFG is the first to bring a liquid-cooled GeForce GTX 295 to the market. As extravagant liquid cooling a GeForce GTX 295 really is, the end results in cooling performance, gaming performance and the incredible aesthetics a product like this offers is extraordinary. So in this article we'll chat a little about the GTX 295 technology, then have a look at BFG's bundle, a really extensive photo-shoot, look at performance with the hottest games available, overclock it until it nearly dies... and then sum it all up in our verdict.
BFG GeForce GTX 285 OCX review
We'll look at BFG finest GeForce GTX 285 offering. See, just like many of NVIDIA's board partners BFG offers the product in several flavors. The offer their regular OC edition, yet also OC+, OC2 and OCX editions. They've got quite a range. We'll explain the difference over the next few pages. Let us have a peek of what's under the hood of the BFG GeForce GTX 285 OCX.
BFG GeForce GTX 280 OCX review
OCX is short for 'Overclocking eXtreme' and it literally boils down to the fact that this is BFG's most high-end specced product in whatever the product range might be. Today we take the fastest NVIDIA graphics card available on the planet. The GeForce GTX 280. A 1400 million transistor counting piece of merchandise that raises the bar of single-GPU graphics processing.