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Home > Hardware Reviews > Graphics Cards

Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Gainward 8800GTS GS

1. Introduction

- Geforce 8800 series

Redefine your gaming reality with NVIDIA® SLI™-Ready GeForce® 8800 graphics processing units (GPUs). The world’s first DirectX® 10 GPUs feature a powerful unified architecture that delivers an incredibly true-to-life gaming experience. Power through games at record speeds. Charge through game maps with vividly realistic, sun-up to sun-down HDR lighting effects while steering clear of mind-blowing physics effects such as explosions, fire, and smoke. Crank up 16x full-screen anti-aliasing without missing a beat – no jaggies, no worries. And when you’re not pwning the enemy, relax to your favorite movies on HD DVD or Blu-ray™ disk with NVIDIA PureVideo™ HD technology.

Available Models: GeForce 8800 GTX and GeForce 8800 GTS

 
GeForce 8800 GTX
GeForce 8800 GTS
Stream Processors
128
96
Core Clock (MHz)
575
500
Shader Clock (MHz)
1350
1200
Memory Clock (MHz)
900
800
Memory Amount
768MB
640MB
Memory Interface
384-bit
320-bit
Memory Bandwidth (GB/sec)
86.4
64
Texture Fill Rate (billion/sec)
36.8
24

NVIDIA® unified architecture: Fully unified shader core dynamically allocates processing power to geometry, vertex, physics, or pixel shading operations, delivering up to 2x the gaming performance of prior generation GPUs.

GigaThread™ Technology: Massively multi-threaded architecture supports thousands of independent, simultaneous threads, providing extreme processing efficiency in advanced, next generation shader programs.

Full Microsoft® DirectX® 10 Support: World's first DirectX 10 GPU with full Shader Model 4.0 support delivers unparalleled levels of graphics realism and film-quality effects.

NVIDIA® SLI™ Technology: Delivers up to 2x the performance of a single graphics card configuration for unequaled gaming experiences by allowing two graphics cards to run in parallel. The must-have feature for performance PCI Express® graphics, SLI dramatically scales performance on today's hottest games.

NVIDIA® Lumenex™ Engine:
Delivers stunning image quality and floating point accuracy with ultra-fast frame rates:

    16X Anti-aliasing Technology:
    Lightning fast, high-quality anti-aliasing at up to 16x sample rates obliterates jagged edges.

    128-bit Floating Point High Dynamic-Range (HDR) Lighting:
    Twice the precision of prior generations for incredibly realistic lighting effects-now with support for anti-aliasing.

NVIDIA® Quantum Effects™ Technology: Advanced shader processors architected for physics computation enable a new level of physics effects to be simulated and rendered on the GPU-all the while freeing the CPU to run the game engine and AI.

NVIDIA® ForceWare® Unified Driver Architecture (UDA): Delivers a proven record of compatibility, reliability, and stability with the widest range of games and applications. ForceWare provides the best out-of-box experience for every user and delivers continuous performance and feature updates over the life of NVIDIA GeForce® GPUs.

OpenGL® 2.0 Optimizations and Support: Ensures top-notch compatibility and performance for OpenGL applications.

NVIDIA® nView® Multi-Display Technology: Advanced technology provides the ultimate in viewing flexibility and control for multiple monitors.

PCI Express Support: Designed to run perfectly with the PCI Express bus architecture, which doubles the bandwidth of AGP 8X to deliver over 4 GB/sec. in both upstream and downstream data transfers.

Dual 400MHz RAMDACs: Blazing-fast RAMDACs support dual QXGA displays with ultra-high, ergonomic refresh rates-up to 2048x1536@85Hz.

Dual Dual-link DVI Support: Able to drive the industry's largest and highest resolution flat-panel displays up to 2560x1600.

Built for Microsoft® Windows Vista™: NVIDIA's fourth-generation GPU architecture built for Windows Vista gives users the best possible experience with the Windows Aero 3D graphical user interface, included in the upcoming operating system (OS) from Microsoft.

NVIDIA® PureVideo™ HD Technology: The combination of high-definition video decode acceleration and post-processing that delivers unprecedented picture clarity, smooth video, accurate color, and precise image scaling for movies and video.

Discrete, Programmable Video Processor:
NVIDIA PureVideo is a discrete programmable processing core in NVIDIA GPUs that provides superb picture quality and ultra-smooth movies with low CPU utilization and power.

Hardware Decode Acceleration:
Provides ultra-smooth playback of H.264, VC-1, WMV and MPEG-2 HD and SD movies.

HDCP Capable:
Designed to meet the output protection management (HDCP) and security specifications of the Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD formats, allowing the playback of encrypted movie content on PCs when connected to HDCP-compliant displays.

Spatial-Temporal De-Interlacing:

Sharpens HD and standard definition interlaced content on progressive displays, delivering a crisp, clear picture that rivals high-end home-theater systems.

High-Quality Scaling:
Enlarges lower resolution movies and videos to HDTV resolutions, up to 1080i, while maintaining a clear, clean image. Also provides downscaling of videos, including high-definition, while preserving image detail.

Inverse Telecine (3:2 & 2:2 Pulldown Correction):
Recovers original film images from films-converted-to-video, providing more accurate movie playback and superior picture quality.

Bad Edit Correction:
When videos are edited after they have been converted from 24 to 25 or 30 frames, the edits can disrupt the normal 3:2 or 2:2 pulldown cadence. PureVideo uses advanced processing techniques to detect poor edits, recover the original content, and display perfect picture detail frame after frame for smooth, natural looking video.

Noise Reduction:
Improves movie image quality by removing unwanted artifacts.

Edge Enhancement:
Sharpens movie images by providing higher contrast around lines and objects.

Below is a table illustrating the major product specifications between Nvidia 8800 and 7700 series and of course ATI's X1950XT series.

 
8800GTX
8800GTS
7950 GX2
7900GTX
X1950XT
GPU
G80
G80
2x G71
G71
R580
Fabrication Process
90 nm
Texturing units
32
24
48
24
16
ROPs
64
48
48
24
16
GPU Frequency (MHz)
575
500
500
650
650
Shader Cores freq. (MHz)
1350
1200
500
650
650
DDR Frequency (MHz)
900
800
600
800
1000
Memory (MB)
768
620
512
512
512
Memory Bus (Bits)
384
320
512
256
256
Fillrate (Mpixels/s)
13800
10000
16000
10400
10400
Memory BW (GB/s)
80.5
59.6
71.5
47.7
59.6
Shader Model
4.0
3.0
HDR + AA
Yes
No
Yes
Price (€)
650
450
450
400
450

Without a doubt, Nvidia's 8800 series is the most advanced GPU currently being sold on the market for the PC. The price of the 8800GTX reaches €650 and is aimed at the more experienced and enthusiast users. The system requirements haven't changed much. You need at least a 600W power supply in order to drive the 8800 series:

1. Microsoft Windows® 2000/XP
2. A PCI-Express compliant motherboard with full size expansion slot
3. Installation requires CD-ROM or DVD-Rom drive
4. A 6-pin PCI Express supplementary power connector
5. DVI or VGA compatible monitor
6. Minimum of 500-600W Power Supply with a minimum of +12V @ 30A for all PC components in SLI mode




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