8800GTS shootout - XFX 8800GTS XXX vs Gainward 8800GTS "Golden Sample"

Introduction and Specification


Many of Nvidia's partners have decided to bump the clock speed on the 8800 parts quite recently. This is a great way that customers can get their hands on some overclocked parts that still have a warranty intact. With this in mind we got in a couple of rather speedy 8800GTS to thrash through our tests.

Let's see how they got on...

8800gts both cards

GeForce 8800

nVidia released the G80 series of GPU's back in November last year and took the market by storm, totally outgunning everything out there. With full (and well implemented it has to be said) DirectX 10 support and steaming DirectX 9.0c support the enthusiast market has lapped these blazingly fast GPU's up like hot-cakes.

Having previously reviewed both the 8800GTX (click) and the 8800GTS (click) , I am approaching this review in a slightly different manner to usual, as you will see later on.

In the meantime let's take a look at the basic specs of the 8800 series.

8800 specs


We've seen a run-through of what is underneath the skin of the G80, let's see how it specs up on paper:

NVIDIA® Unified Architecture

* Unified shader architecture
* GigaThreadTM technology
* Full support for Microsoft® DirectX® 10
o Geometry shaders
o Geometry instancing
o Streamed output
o Shader Model 4.0
* Full 128-bit floating point precision through the entire rendering pipeline
NVIDIA LumenexTM Engine
* 16x full screen anti-aliasing
* Transparent multisampling and transparent supersampling
* 16x angle independent anisotropic filtering
* 128-bit floating point high dynamic-range (HDR) lighting with anti-aliasing
o 32-bit per component floating point texture filtering and blending
* Advanced lossless compression algorithms for color, texture, and z-data
* Support for normal map compression
* Z-cull
* Early-Z
NVIDIA Quantum EffectsTM Technology
* Advanced shader processors architected for physics computation
* Simulate and render physics effects on the graphics processor
NVIDIA SLITM Technology1
* Patented hardware and software technology allows two GeForce-based graphics cards to run in parallel.Scaling performance and enhance image quality on today's top titles.
NVIDIA PureVideoTM HD Technology2
* Dedicated on-chip video processor
* High-definition H.264, VC-1, MPEG2 and WMV9 decode acceleration
* Advanced spatial-temporal de-interlacing
* HDCP capable3
* Spatial-Temporal De-Interlacing
* Noise Reduction
* Edge Enhancement
* Bad Edit Correction
* Inverse telecine (2:2 and 3:2 pull-down correction)
* High-quality scaling
* Video color correction
* Microsoft® Video Mixing Renderer (VMR) support Advanced Display Functionality* Two dual-link DVI outputs for digital flat panel display resolutions up to 2560x1600
* Dual integrated 400MHz RAMDACs for analog display resolutions up to and including 2048x1536 at 85Hz
* Integrated HDTV encoder provides analog TV-output (Component/Composite/S-Video) up to 1080i resolution
* NVIDIA nView® multi-display technology capability
* 10-bit display processing
Built for Microsoft® Windows VistaTM
* Full DirectX 10 support
* Dedicated graphics processor powers the new Windows Vista Aero 3D user interface
* VMR-based video architecture
High Speed Interfaces
* Designed for PCI Express® x16
* Designed for high-speed GDDR3 memory
Operating Systems
* Built for Microsoft Windows Vista
* Windows XP/Windows XP 64
* Linux
API Support
* Complete DirectX support, including Microsoft DirectX 10 Shader Model 4.0
* Full OpenGL® support, including OpenGL 2.0


Now XFX and Gainward have gone a few MHz better than these stock speeds of 500/1600 going up to 550/1760 for the Gainward Bliss "Golden Sample" Edition and 550/1800 for the XFX "XXX" Edition. It's also worth noting that XFX have overclocked the stream processors on their XXX Edition to 1500MHz, as compared to 1200 at stock. The gainward card is running at the stock 1200MHz (according to RivaTuner ).

The stream processors in the GTS were cut down from 128 to 96 and as such we've seen more clock speed increases throughout the GTS range as they seem to have that little bit extra to squeeze out of them. This also means that the overclocked GTS are getting close to the performance of the GTX.

Let's take a look at the cards.
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Most Recent Comments

05-03-2007, 18:15:42

Excellent review Kemp.

Definatly made a good read Quote

05-03-2007, 19:06:56

looks like a good deal, does that GTS

but i am waiting to get a X1950XTX, when the R600 comes out, the price should plumit!

or so i hope Quote

05-03-2007, 19:25:07

Hey Kempez, do you thing a XFX XXX 320Mb version would be better than a regular 640Mb version?Quote

05-03-2007, 19:38:52

I didn't try the 320mb version I'm afraid mark - but I put it in the conclusion as a considerationQuote

05-03-2007, 21:34:36

nice review kemp =P

@ markkleb out of the box, GTX is better, GTS stock is 500 whereas GTX is 550-575. I dont think price/performance wise thou a GTX is worth more to get.Quote

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