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Digital-Daily : Video : asus_en8800gs

ASUS EN8800GS TOP: price vs. speed

ASUS EN8800GS TOP: price vs. speed
Author: Anton Rachko
Date: 03.03.2008

Releasing video cards with cut-down prices and based on G92 graphic chips, NVIDIA has killed two birds with one stone. First, a competitor to Radeon HD3850 256 MB whose price is much lower than GeForce 8800GT has emerged onto the market. Secondly, NVIDIA gets an added chance to implement greater number of G92 chips which have proved to be successful and cheap to manufacture. So, what has NVIDIA done this time? Removed two memory chips out of GeForce 8800GT, disabled one shader unit in the GPU and reduced the frequencies. The result has been dubbed GeForce 8800GS. The goal of our today's review is to explore it with the aide of ASUS' EN8800GS TOP video card. Here is a comparative table of main specifications of the video cards.

Name Specifications

ASUS EN8800GS TOP
GeForce 8800GS
GeForce 8800GT

GPU

G92

Video memory capacity, MB

384
384
512

Memory bus width, bit

192
192
256

Core / GPU shader unit frequency, MHz

600/1674
550/1375
600/1500

Effective frequency of the video memory, MHz

1800
1600
1800

Universal processors

96
96
112

Texture units

48*
48*
56
Specifications common for all the video cards
PCI-Express 2.0 x16 / 2xDVI / HDMI / S-Video

* - unacknowledged information

Box for ASUS EN8800GS TOP

The package for ASUS EN8800GS TOP follows the already familiar design, except that the handle to carry around and a tip-up coved have been removed. That is understandable because GeForce 8800GS series video cards are positioned as a lower-end solution. Note that the video card in question belongs to the TOP series, that is, factory-overclocked. That is why ASUS was delighted to stress it out that the video card is able getting over 10 000 score marks at 3DMark 06. We will certainly try that out because the test configuration does not restrict the speed of the video card.

The dimensions of the package have turned smaller, however, as compared to the packages by many other manufacturers you can hardly call it small.

The reverse side of the package lists info on the product, the bundled utilities, and ASUS company. We will present a separate coverage of the utilities - they really are worth it.

ASUS EN8800GS TOP: package bundle

The package bundle of the novelty is quite modest:

  • power supply adapter for PCI-Express video cards;
  • S-Video/Component out adapter;
  • DVI -> D-Sub adapter;
  • drivers CD;
  • Documentation CD;
  • brief installation guide.

As compared to the more expensive relatives, the package bundle lacks a CD bag. At that, the differences in package bundle are over.

ASUS EN8800GS TOP

The video card is manufactured following ASUS' own design and is equipped with a larger cooling system of golden color with a transparent fan, so it has taken up two expansion slots. However, that is not what catches the eye but the two missing memory chips. As a result, this new GeForce 8800GS and, in particular, ASUS EN8800GS TOP offers a narrower memory bus as compared to the more expensive GeForce 8800GT and GeForce 8800GTS 512 – 192 bit versus 256 bit. And of course the video memory capacity has turned smaller as well: 384 MB versus 512 MB in GeForce 8800GT and GeForce 8800GTS 512.

The reverse side of the video card offers nothing remarkable, except that the cooling system is fastened with spring-loaded screws.

Under the cooling system, there is a regular GPU G92 of revision A2, with nothing pointing to the fact that it belongs to the cheaper series with 96 universal processors. Note that the GPU is powered following the 3-phase scheme, which is seen from three grey throttles placed in line. We can also see the six video memory chips which make up the total capacity 384 MB.

The memory chips are made by Hynix and offer 1.1 ns access time, which is equivalent to the effective frequency 1800 MHz.

The radiators of the cooling system are made of aluminum and painted in golden. The base of the CPU radiator has has not undergone any additional processing and, like other sides of the radiator, is also painted golden. To provide contact with the GPU, the developers used a viscous grey material (sort of a "chewing gum"). To provide contact of the small radiator with the power supply elements, a really soft sticky white spacer is used. Now let's look at ASUS' proprietary utilities which come bundled with EN8800GS TOP.

Content:

  • Стр.1 - Exterior. Features
  • Стр.2 - ASUS' proprietary utilities
  • Стр.3 - Overclocking. Benchmarking. Conclusions




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