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Albatron GeForce FX 5950 Ultra

Manufacturer: Albatron
Supplied By: Albatron
Street Price: ~$425

by Dean Barker (1/07/2004)

Introduction

NVidia's response to ATi's 9800XT, is the GeForce FX 5950 Ultra.  As with the 9800XT, the 5950 Ultra is a slightly pumped up version of its immediate predecessor.  NVidia has been hard at work battling ATi with their 9800 based cards that have knocked NVidia from the thrown of speed.  So if some gains can be made you can bet NVidia is going to make them, big or small.  The frequencies of the 5950 Ultra based cards are up from the 5900 Ultra's 450MHz / 850MHz on the core and memory respectively to 475MHz / 950MHz.  The bandwidth of the 5950 Ultra hence makes a jump from 27.2 gb/second to 30.4 gb/second.  How is this going to translate into performance for the end user you ask and is it enough to match the 9800XT?  Well, today we take the Albatron GeForce FX 5950 and toss it into a cage match with the 9800 XT in an effort to give you a handle of what you can expect for your upgrade dollar.  Thanks go out to Albatron from making this review possible.  Let's start out as always with the 5950 Ultra's white papers.

Specifications

  • NVidia NV 35 GPU with a clock speed of 475MHz

  • GPU manufactured using the .13 micron

  • 256 MB DDR memory clocked at 950MHz

  • 256 bit memory interface

  • Memory bandwidth: 30.4 gb/sec

  • Fill rate: 3.8 billion texels/sec

  • Vertices/sec: 356 million

  • AGP 4x/8x

  • Max Screen resolution of 2048 x 1536 @ 75MHz

  • nView Multi-display technology

  • 64 phase video scaler

  • DirectX 9 and OpenGL 1.4 support

  • Integrated TV encoder

  • Integrated hardware MPEG-2 decoder

  • CineFX Engine

  • Digital Vibrancy Control (DVC)

  • Intellisample Technology

  • UltraShadow Technology

  • TV out: yes

  • DVI: yes

  • VIVO: yes

What you get

Aside from the GeForce 5950 Ultra, you get a well laid out manual; driver and utility disk; CyberLink's Power DVD XP player and PowerDirector 2.5; a copy of Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project; a game demo disk including Zax, AOW II, Max Payne, Rally Trophy and BeamBrackers; S-Video cable; Composite to composite cable and a DVI to VGA adapter.  Some useful tools here but as far as the game bundle, not so much.

The card

The Albatron GeForce FX 5950 Ultra looks like nothing I've seen before.  Covering the card is an oversized cooling system that you would have to be blind to miss.  More on this in a second though.  The card itself is BIG; with the PCB measuring 215mm compared to the 190mm of its ATi rival, the 5950 UV rates as one big honk'n card.  On our test system (ABIT NF7), it locked off two DIMM slots because of its length.  While not the end of the world, it is noteworthy.

     


NEXT

Pg.1 - Introduction
Pg.2 - The Card
Pg.3 - Testing (UT2003)
Pg.4 - (UT2003 / Serious Sam: TSE)
Pg.5 - (Quake III, FutureMark, Code Creatures, AquaMark)
Pg.6 - Overclocking
Pg.7 - Image Quality and Conclusion


 



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