Albatron Trinity GeForce 6600GT AGP Videocard Review
ATi and nVIDIA focusing efforts on new PCI Express offerings, the
majority of consumers and
their 8X AGP systems should rightly feel a little bit left out. Both the GeForce 6600/GT
core and the ATI X700 family offer phenomenal performance for the money, certainly more
than we've been used to in the last couple of years, and keeping
them off AGP just won't do.
Videocard manufacturers realize this, and the
timing couldn't be better for releasing a whole slew of new mainstream AGP
videocards. One such PCI Express to 8X AGP convert is the Geforce 6000GT core, and that is
coming to us in the form of the Albatron Trinity GeForce 6600GT AGP.
The core is the same as the PCI Express GF 6600GT version, but on this
card, there's a little PCI Express to 8x AGP HSI bridge chip which allows
the core to communicate through the AGP bus.
Trinity GeForce 6600GT AGP is
only compatible with 1.5V 4x/8x AGP motherboards and it's physically impossible
to insert this videocard into a 2x only AGP slot. If you tried to force it, you'd only
damage both the videocard and the motherboard (and possibly yourself). The Trinity 6600GT AGP sports 128MB
of Samsung BGA DDR3 memory, and uses a 128-bit memory bus; which is enough
memory for today's most demanding games.
software bundles have never been Albatron's claim to fame (hint: it has to do
with performance), and its videocards are usually a little more affordable
for that reason. Included with the Trinity 6000GT AGP are copies of
WinDVD/WinDVD Creator, a five game demo CD and a full version of Arx Fatalis.
Since the Albatron Trinity GeForce 6600GT AGP supports many different forms of
TV output it also comes with an S-Video/Composite/Component break out box. We
would have liked to see Albatron include a DVI to analog converter for dual
|The PCIe to AGP bridge chip.
Unlike the 6600GT PCI Express counterparts, the AGP-based Trinity 6600GT requires
a little extra power, so there's a molex connector on the top right
hand corner of the card.
cooling solution on the Trinity GeForce 6600GT AGP is much different from
Albatron's past HSF solutions and looks... well... unique. Cooling the
small FCBGA GeForce 6600GT core is a large aluminum block with fins and a 55mm fan. During
testing, the rear of the card was only warm to the
touch, so I suppose the cooler
was doing its job. The PCI Express to AGP bridge is
cooled with a separate aluminum heatsink that fits into the larger one. It's not the quietest thermal solution Albatron has
ever applied to one of its videocards, and I hope it doesn't signal a shift in
the companies ethos. I'd also like to note that the blue plastic fan guard
slightly blocks the adjacent PCI slot on the Gigabyte 8KNXP motherboard we tested it
The little break out box that Albatron
includes with the videocard works well. Anyone with a standard TV can use the
card's S-Video or composite connectors, and those with HDTVs can use the component output (Y, Pb, Pr) connectors.