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XGI Volari 8300 Reference Videocard Review
XGI Volari 8300 Reference Videocard Review - PCSTATS
The Volari 8300 a native PCI Express GPU, and it's intended to compete in the entry level market with a handful of home theatre PC oriented capabilities that should make it stand out.
 77% Rating:   
Filed under: Video Cards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: XGI Tech Dec 15 2005   C. Sun  
Home > Reviews > Video Cards > XGI Tech Volari 8300

A good card for 2D work?

With every player in the computer industry shuffling for position for the digital home, XGI believes its new 8300 GPU has what it takes to compete with the big boys. Instead of focusing on mainstream options like 3D performance, XGI equipped the Volari 8300 core with some really good TV output features.

Built on 0.13 micron manufacturing process, the XGI Volari 8300 GPU is a low power solution which makes it ideal for environments where added fan noise is most certainly unwanted. The 128MB of onboard memory and dual 350 MHz RAMDACs allow the card to support resolutions of up to 2048x1536. The Volari 8300 GPU also supports a whole array of TV output options from traditional S-Video/Composite to HDTV resolutions up to 720P/1080i.

Technically speaking, the XGI Volari 8300 is DirectX 9.0 compatible, however it is unrealistic to expect much more than passable frame rates at low resolutions with minimal details turned on. That shouldn't be much of an issue though, the XGI Volari 8300 GPU is not targeted as a gamer's videocard and 3D performance of the Volari 8300 is similar to nVIDIA's GeForce 6200TC GPU.

In order to save energy, XGI has implemented its Cool Power II technology into the Volari 8300 core which dynamically adjusts the videocard core and memory speeds depending on video load. It is fully compatible with Intel's Device Performance States as well as PCI Express Active State Power Management. According to the manufacturer, power consumption is as low as 13W at idle.

The area where XGI really shines is with its TrueVideo engine that is integrated into the Volari 8300 GPU. Unfortunately XGI was a bit short on specifics, but the gist of the situation is that the TrueVideo engine supports improved quality scaling, 3:2 pull down correction, inverse telecine, special de-interlacing and special edge smoothing. It sounds like a lot of marketing hype but TrueVideo does produce a very nice video picture. Playing the accompanying Friend's DVD in PowerDVD 6 (with hardware de-interlacing enabled) we saw video quality that was a step above most others.

Objects in the background were still sharp, and more lifelike than with competing videocards. XGI's edge smoothing also adds a nice polish to the screen. XGI's improved de-interlacing was particularly impressive, and software de-interlacing really compares very poorly.

The XGI Volari 8300 PCI Express x16 reference videocard has some very good multimedia capabilities and make it a viable low-cost option for users assembling a home theatre PC, or 2D workstation machine. Retail prices of XGI Volari 8300 based videocards are not known yet however XGI is targeting the entry level market so it should be quite inexpensive. The Volari 8300 might just be what XGI needs to break into the North American market, and it has the potential to lead the way towards the digital home.

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Contents of Article: XGI Tech Volari 8300
 Pg 1.  XGI Volari 8300 Reference Videocard Review
 Pg 2.  XGI's TrueVideo Engine
 Pg 3.  XGI Reactor Drivers
 Pg 4.  Benchmarks: 3DMark03, Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory, FarCry
 Pg 5.  — A good card for 2D work?

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