Review: Sparkle Calibre P790+ 512 MB SLI -
Overclocking & Tweaking
As most of you with most videocards know, you can apply a simple series of tricks to boost the overall performance a little. You can do this at two levels, namely tweaking by enabling registry or BIOS hacks, or very simple, tamper with Image Quality. And then there is overclocking, which will give you the best possible results by far.
What do we need?
One of the best tool for overclocking NVIDIA and ATI videocards is our own Rivatuner that you can download here. If you own an ATI or NVIDIA graphics card then the manufacturer actually has very nice built in options for you that can be found in the display driver properties.
Where should we go ?
Overclocking: By increasing the frequency of the videocard's memory and GPU, we can make the videocard increase its calculation clock cycles per second. It sounds hard but it really can be done in less then a few minutes. I always tend to recommend to novice users and beginners not to increase the frequency any higher then 5% of the core and memory clock. Example: If your card runs at 500 MHz (which is pretty common these days) then I suggest you don't increase the frequency any higher than 25 to 50 MHz.
More advanced users push the frequency often way higher. Usually when your 3D graphics start to show artifacts such as white dots ("snow"), you should back down 10-15 MHz and leave it at that.Usually when you are overclocking too hard, it'll start to show artifacts, empty polygons or it will even freeze. Carefully find that limit and then back down at least 20 MHz from the moment you notice an artifact. Look carefully and observe well. I really wouldn't know why you need to overclock today's tested card anyway but we'll show it still ;)
All in all... do it at your own risk.
Sparkle GeForce 7900 GT Calibre P790+
So thecard already comes with default higher clocks compared to reference. And yes, less you can boost it even higher. The core was hardly overclockable but the memory .. yowza ... 1680 MHz !! We even tested this overclock in SLI mode. Have a look below what'll happen.
Our overclock scores were very impressive. You are looking at Prey at 4xAA and 16xAF.
Sidenote: Our overclocking results are never a guarantee for your home grown results. Manufacturers' choices in components differ often per batch and so will the end-result. This however is a good indication of what is (or isn't) possible.
It's not often we publish reviews on storage devices but a while ago Vantec contacted us with the question if we wanted to review their latest NAS device. I had a peek, it looked sexy, ease of use and good connectivity. Suffice to say that today we'll be having a look at the NexStarLS where you can insert a Parallel HD into a little white or black box and then majestically transform it into a Network Storage Device, so that no matter where you are, you can always access your data as it's quite a portable device and so easy to use.
Review: BFG GeForce 7600 GT & 7900 GT OC
BFG manufactures the GeForce 7600 GT and 7900 GT but as trendy as it is ... they brand it as a special "OC" version. These are the pre-clocked (at default higher clocked then the reference cards from NVIDIA) on both the memory and graphics processor. So today we are looking at the BFG GeForce 7600 GT OC and also their GeForce 7900 GT OC. Both cards come with 256 MB memory and both cards produce a stack load of performance for your well spent bucks.
Review: Sparkle Calibre P790+ 512 MB SLI
Sparkle has their usual line of cards and then their Calibre line of cards as well. Much like other companies the Calibre series is slightly more expensive yet you'll receive some pretty nifty extra candy. In the case of the GeForce 7900 GT they are offering a 790 and 790+ model of this videocard and we'll be looking at that P790+ model.
Review: Core 2 Duo E6600, E6700 & X6800
Today we'll be taking some new Intel processors for a test-drive. Intel is smiling .. really really smiling ! They have achieved something really good for the processor market. The Pentium 4 brand is being ditched and Core 2 Duo has recently been introduced. Specifically the Core 2 Duo processors with the "Conroe" processor core really hit the market aggressively. They are energy friendly and offer a stack load of performance and if that isn't enough .. you can buy them relatively cheaply.