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MSI NX7900GTX-T2D512E Geforce 7900GTX 512MB Videocard Review

MSI NX7900GTX-T2D512E Geforce 7900GTX 512MB Videocard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: With ATi's new R580 VPU outperforming, but failing to secure a knock out blow against nVIDIA's eight month old G70 core, PCSTATS was wondering how nVIDIA would respond with its upcoming 'G71'...
Filed under: Video Cards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: MSI Computer Mar 09 2006   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Video Cards > MSI Computer NX7900GTX-T2D512E

From the nVidia G70 to the new G71 core...

The GeForce 7900GTX name should indicate to users that the difference between it and the preceding GeForce 7800GTX is minimal (unlike the jump from 6800 to 7800).

Aside from the improved manufacturing process which results in a smaller core size, there are really no architectural differences between the 'G70' and 'G71' GPUs.

If you recall, nVIDIA chose to stick with 0.11 micron manufacturing process for the 'G70' and instead experimented with newer manufacturing techniques on its lower end products. Now that TSMC has the 0.09 micron manufacturing process down pat, nVIDIA has given its G70 core a refresh and so the 'G71' is born.

The new nVIDIA GeForce 7900GTX core contains a hefty 278 million transistors (which take up an area of 196 square millimeters vs. 352 square millimeters for the ATi X1900 core), which is less than the 7800GTX's 302 million. The 7900GTX GPU is clocked at 650 MHz, or 100 MHz higher than the 7800GTX version. Its pixel pipeline has remained the same at 24, and the vertex pipeline at 8.

The GeForce 7900GTX core continues on with Intellisample 4.0 technology, CineFX 4.0 engine and supports DirectX 9.0C and OpenGL 2.0.

The memory controller remains at 256-bits, and the GDDR3 memory has a default clock speed of 1.6 GHz (51.2 GB/s bandwidth), 100 MHz slower than with the 7800GTX 512MB (54.4 GB/s bandwidth). The dual 400 MHz RAMDACs will support dual monitors with a maximum resolution of 2048x1536 at a staggering 85 Hz. Users of large 16:9 widescreen LCDs will like the fact that GeForce 7900 series supports two Dual-link DVI connectors with a maximum resolution up to 2560x1600.

Dual-Link DVI doubles the power of transmissions and provides an increase in speed and signal quality. This is necessary for extremely high resolutions as single-link DVI connectors do not support enough bandwidth. For instance a single-link DVI at 60 Hz can only display a resolution of 1920x1080, while a DVI dual-link display can go as high as 2048x1535.

Two new GPUs in the Geforce 7900 Series

Here is a break down of the two new GPUs introduced by nVIDIA as compared to the current Geforce 7800s. You can see there are a few minor changes between the classes, but essentially the features are the same.

GeForce 7900GT/GTX VS 7800GTX Specifications
7900GTX 7900GT 7800GTX-512 7800GTX
Manufacturing Process 90nm 90nm 110nm 110nm
Number of Transistors 278M 278M 302M 302M
Core Clocks (Vertex, Core in MHz) 700/650 470/450 550/550 470/430
Memory Clock (MHz / data rate) 800/1600 660/1320 850/1700 600/1200
Vertex Shaders (#) 8 8 8 8
Pixel Shaders (#) 24 24 24 24
Memory Interface 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit
Frame Buffer Size 512MB 256MB 512MB 256MB
Memory Bandwidth (GB/s) 51.2 42.2 54.4 38.4
Verticies/Seconds (million) 1400 940 1100 940
Texture Fill Rate (# Pixels pipes x clk) in Billions/sec 15.6 10.8 13.2 10.32
Bus Technology PCI Express PCI Express PCI Express PCI Express

Despite the die shrink, the power requirements for the GeForce 7900GTX have increased from what the Geforce 7800GTX consumes.

In a single 7900GTX videocard situation, nVIDIA recommends at least a 400W power supply with 22 Amps on the 12V rail. Two GeForce 7900GTX videocards running in SLI will obviously use more power, and for this nVIDIA recommends power supplies in the range of 500-600W with 30 Amps on the 12V rail.

In any case, users contemplating a spiffy new GeForce 7900GTX videocard should check out nVIDIA's list of approved power supplies first. Now, what's all this about XHD Gaming?

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Contents of Article: MSI Computer NX7900GTX-T2D512E
 Pg 1.  MSI NX7900GTX-T2D512E Geforce 7900GTX 512MB Videocard Review
 Pg 2.  — From the nVidia G70 to the new G71 core...
 Pg 3.  Extreme High Definition Gaming, the next big thing?
 Pg 4.  Overclocking the MSI NX7900GTX-T2D512E Videocard
 Pg 5.  Benchmarks: 3DMark05, 3DMark06
 Pg 6.  Benchmarks: AquaMark3
 Pg 7.  Benchmarks: FarCry
 Pg 8.  Benchmarks: SplinterCell: Chaos Theory
 Pg 9.  Benchmarks: Doom 3
 Pg 10.  Benchmarks: Quake 4
 Pg 11.  Benchmarks: FEAR
 Pg 12.  Benchmarks: X3: Reunion
 Pg 13.  Advanced Benchmarks: FarCry, Doom 3
 Pg 14.  Advanced Benchmarks: FEAR and Conclusions

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