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XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX Graphics Card Review

Feb 12 2007, 12:00am CST | by , in Reviews | Computer Hardware

XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX Graphics Card Review
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Benchmarks

What’s Different?
Removing the XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX from the package nothing gives it away at first glance as a toned down version of the full strength 8800 GTX. You have to pry the stock heat sink and fan off the card to see that NVIDIA simply left half the memory chips off to get the price down to where the consumers shopping for a mid range graphics card are buying.

Like all of the 8800 series graphics cards the XFX, 8800 GTS 320MB XXX is fully DirectX 10 compliant and shares the other cutting edge features with the 8800 GTS and GTX. Since the differences in the new GTS and the previous GTS is only memory I will not go into the individual features of the graphics card, check out the review of the 8800 GTX for the full details on what the 8800 series of cards bring to the table feature wise.

Clock Speeds
The XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX is clocked similarly to the 8800 GTS 640MB XXX card, but with a 580 MHz core and the same 1.8GHz memory clock as compared to the stock 8800 GTS 320MB being clocked at 500 MHz on the core and 1.6 GHz on the memory.

Test Machine
The test system I am using today has the following specifications:

  • CPU- AMD FX-62
  • Mainboard- ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe
  • RAM- Kingston HyperX DDR7200 2x 1GB
  • OS- Windows XP Pro SP2
  • Video- XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX
  • NVIDIA Drivers- 97.92

3DMark06
To get an idea of how well the XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX performs in synthetic and real world use I used 3DMark06, FEAR and Battlefield 2142 to give the card a graphical workout. The first test up was 3DMark06, which I ran at default settings in 3DMark06 and in the NVIDIA control panel. 3DMark06 results are as follows:

  • Total 3DMarks- 9150
  • SM2.0- 4189
  • HDR/SM3.0- 4258
  • CPU- 2084
  • Return to Proxycon- 34.828
  • Firefly Forest- 34.992
  • Canyon Flight- 39.489
  • Deep Freeze- 45.677
  • CPU1- 0.668
  • CPU2- 1.040

To compare the stock 8800 GTS that I reviewed last year scored 8554 total 3DMarks on a test system using an Intel X6800. What is impressive here is that the XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX beat the stock 8800 GTS 640MB card significantly on a much slower CPU and scored well against the stock 8800 GTX’s score of 10,355 as well.

FEAR
The next test up was with FEAR I ran the game at all max settings and a screen resolution of 1920 x 1200 with 4x AA and 16x AF for the first run and recorded frame rate data via the FEAR in game test loop. The results are as follows:

    Min- 12
  • Avg- 36
  • Max- 57
The percentages showed that the XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX spent only 7% of the test time with frame rates under 25fps, 56% of the time frame rates were 25-40 fps and a full 37% of the time frame rates were greater than 40 fps.

Battlefield 2142
The final gaming test that I ran on the XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX was with Battlefield 2142. For this game I used the medium settings radio button at a screen resolution of 1600 x 1200 with 2x AA. I recorded frame rate data with FRAPS on a single player map called “Fall of Berlin.” Fraps recorded the following frame rate data:

  • Min- 55
  • Avg- 76.02
  • Max- 94

The performance that XFX musters from its 8800 GTS 320MB XXX graphics card is quite impressive. What is even more impressive is that XFX is delivering this type of performance at a staggering price of only $334.99 and bundling a full version of Ghost Recon in the package as well. The performance that XFX and NVIDIA continue to deliver with the 8800 series of graphics cards continues to impress me, six months ago, I was getting less performance out of a pair of 7950 GX2 graphics cards costing nearly $1000.


Verdict

Conclusion

Pros
  • Fantastic performance
  • Great price for the performance you get
  • Double lifetime warranty

Cons

  • No Windows Vista drivers available

Verdict
Today a single XFX 8800 GTS 320MB XXX significantly beats the performance of NVIDIA’s retired Quad SLI beast on the same exact test system, impressive to say the least. If you have been itching to upgrade to a DirectX 10 compliant graphics card but have been weary of stepping into the $400 and above price range for the 8800 GTS 640 and 8800 GTX this is the time to get out your wallet and jump on the DirectX 10 bandwagon, even if the wagon has not started to roll yet
9.5
10
 
 
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