8. DirectX TestBed
We used RivaTuner v2.0.6 to overclock the MSI 8600GTS OC card up to 734/1572/1124 (core/shader/memory) frequencies. This were the best results we got and at the same time, the card was 100% stable in Crysis benchmark. We noticed a very small performance gain, especially in 3D Mark 05 and 3D Mark 06...
The most noticeable negative of MSI 8600GTS OC is the fact that its fan works at full speed all the time. We didn't liked this since the fan was noisy and this is also confirmed after looking at MSI's website: "...This VGA card cannot support smart FAN function so that is why it will always run at full speed...".
MSI has a long tradition and good reputation among enthusiast users for a very good performance/price ratio in their products. The Nvidia 8600GTS series offers good gaming performance in most current games and at the same time proper price for the entry level user. MSI introduces its own solution with the codename "NX8600GTS-T2D256E-HD-OC" that has higher core/memory clocks. Moreover it offers a DVI to HDMI adapter and an HDMI cable, that usually other manufacturers don't give. Lastly, Company Of Heroes RTS game title is included to give you a first idea of the graphics card's performance and abilities.
Passing to the benchmarks, in most tests, it performed more or less as the other tested Nvidia based 8600GTS cards. Due to its slight lower clocks than the Asus EN8600GTS Top got the second place, at least under DirectX9 games. We didn't saw any difference when we passed to DirectX10 games (with maximum level od details). The best news is that the price is much lower than other graphics cards, with a retail price of 145€! Both Gigabyte 8600GTS Passive and Asus EN8600GTS Top cost more so that means it has the best performance/price ratio. Concluding this review, we don't have any negative for MSI's 8600GTS solution, unless you have a serious problem with the noise that this cards produces...