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Asus EN7800GT 2DHTV 256M Videocard Review

Asus EN7800GT 2DHTV 256M Videocard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: Built with the massive 320 million transistor GeForce 7800GT 'G70' core, the Asus EN7800GT packs in 256MB of GDDR3 memory.
 88% Rating:   
Filed under: Video Cards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: ASUS Nov 22 2005   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Video Cards > ASUS EN7800GT 2DHTV/256M/OSP/A

nVIDIA PureVideo and System Load

High Definition content is the future of entertainment; heck Sony is betting on HD massively by timing the release of the PlayStation 3 for 2006 when HD is set to fully explode into the lexicon of techno-geeks everywhere! Playing High Definition content on current generation PCs can boggle down even the fastest processors, mainly because there is more data to handle. Similar to the need for DVD accelerators a few years back, nVIDIA PureVideo enables computer users to view MPEG-2/DVD and WMV HD formats without slowing the PC to a crawl.

The PureVideo standard incorporates a hardware accelerator for the afore mentioned MPEG-2/DVD, and Microsoft Windows Media HD Video standards (WMV HD). According to nVIDIA's documentation on PureVideo, the GPU (GeForce 6 and 7 series GPUs) takes on video decoding tasks from the CPU, and the end result is smoother, shutter free HD playback. nVIDIA PureVideo also supports most current and future high definition formats. The system seems to be built with a good degree of future proofing for upcoming standards - as it should be if we as consumers are spending $400-$500 on videocards right now.

PureVideo is more than just a media accelerator; it also includes features to improve video picture quality. If you believe the marketing; DVD, cable, and satellite video provide poor crispness, clearness and smoothness that consumers are desperate to be "saved from." nVIDIA's PureVideo technology applies spatial temporal de-interlacing to apparently deliver a better image than traditional de-interlacing can muster. PureVideo also fixes the 3:2 pull down problem that can arise from 24 fps video being converted to 30 fps for viewing on TVs or monitors. By recovering the original 24 frame content, PureVideo apparently allows for a clear crisper image.

PureVideo can also scale videos to any resolution, while maintaining a relatively detailed picture. This means users can view lower resolution videos at a high resolution without suffering too much from blocky or blurry pictures.

To test PureVideo's HD accelerating capabilities, we decided to play one video through Windows Media Player 10, which was downloaded from Microsoft's WMV HD Content Showcase. The Discoverers (IMAX) video is available in both 720P and 1080P formats, and CPU utilization was roughly read through Task Manager to give a general indication of load.

After loading up The Discoverers 720P video, there was an immediate spike in CPU utilization up to 100%, after a second however, that dropped down to roughly 13%. During the next two minutes, CPU utilization jumped between 13-30%.

When playing the 1080P version of the "The Discoverers" video, it is interesting to see that it puts more load on the system. It really should not be a surprise since more data needs to be decoded and CPU utilization jumps between 29-45%.

If we play both 720P and 1080P versions of The Discoverers video without a PureVideo compatible videocard, CPU utilization stays at roughly 100% the full time. In fact the 1080P The Discoverers video was laggy even with an Athlon64 4000+ based PC chugging below. If you want to play High Definition content on your PC without a HD accelerator, better be prepared for lag. It is nice that nVIDIA has built in HD acceleration into its entire product line, and this is something that users will definitely appreciate come 2006 when HD content is more common than a Starbuck's in San Francisco!

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Contents of Article: ASUS EN7800GT 2DHTV/256M/OSP/A
 Pg 1.  Asus EN7800GT 2DHTV 256M Videocard Review
 Pg 2.  Feature set of EN7800GT 2DHTV/256M/OSP/A
 Pg 3.  — nVIDIA PureVideo and System Load
 Pg 4.  Overclocking the GeForce 7800GT
 Pg 5.  Benchmarks: 3DMark03, 3DMark05
 Pg 6.  Benchmarks: AquaMark3, Halo
 Pg 7.  Benchmarks: FarCry
 Pg 8.  Benchmarks: Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory
 Pg 9.  Benchmarks: Doom 3
 Pg 10.  Benchmarks: Quake 4
 Pg 11.  Benchmarks: FEAR
 Pg 12.  Advanced Benchmarks: FarCry, Doom 3, FEAR
 Pg 13.  Advanced Benchmarks: FEAR and Conclusions

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