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The Killer NIC: Any good?

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  • NIC
  • Networking
  • Components
Last response: in Components
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March 7, 2007 7:31:40 AM

Hey everyone,

Sorry if this belongs in the networking hardware category but I was just reading a review in my magazine about a NIC (remember those?) that is geared for gamers called the Killer NIC (official site www.killernic.com).

Basically, all the Killer NIC is is a card that takes all of your networking traffic and processes it independent of the CPU. There's a bunch of other stuff like ping reduction and Gamefirst packet prioritiser, but the big seller is FNA (Flexible Network Architecture), which, if developed for, allows the application to run its networking elements exclusively off the card, bypassing the CPU and Window's network.

Oh yes, it also works out of the box, unlike other PCI devices I can think of *cough* PhysX! *cough*

The big deal about it is that the Killer NIC has apparantly been getting really good reviews. However, I've never heard about it until today.

Does anyone on the TH forums own one? If so, is it worth the entry price?

More about : killer nic good

March 7, 2007 1:11:57 PM

not worth it. too much money for little gain. ninja from daclan did a review on it link
scroll down a bit and you'll find it. also extremetech did a review on it link same results. same with anandtech link
if you search the forums you can find similar discussions
March 7, 2007 2:15:12 PM

I concur that this NIC is almost a total waste.

Think of it this way.

When I ping my local router (mine, not at the ISP) I get a response of <1ms.
When www.tomshardware.com I get a response of 87ms.

There is no way that the killer NIC is going be able to reduce the 86ms that occurs outside of my local network. This is where most of the lag will occur for games.

These on-board NICs frequently are used by robust Web Servers, File Servers, etc.. and can put out huge amount of traffic to a large number of clients. The amount of traffic in these games is fairly low.
Related resources
March 7, 2007 10:00:31 PM

Okay. thanks for the links.

In theory, it's a really good piece of hardware; it does what it says it does and it won't destroy your PC. However...
March 8, 2007 11:47:44 AM

Well, so long as the claim is that the NIC card will send and receive packets across the internet then it does in fact do what it claims.

If the claims are that it will provide a perceptable performance boost in games, it does not from what I have read and seen. The problem is that the delays/lag due to networking that is seen does not exist on the workstation unless there is some type of hardware configuration problem on the PC.
March 8, 2007 7:08:21 PM

Its pretty much an expensive POS. The idea behind it is valid, but the card just doesnt perform well enough for it to be worth the cash. I dunno, if i got it for free and had an extra slot on my mobo to fill i would probably use it.
March 9, 2007 1:17:29 AM

its good for looking good
its good for lab testing

its not good for what they claim!
March 9, 2007 4:48:58 AM

What, no Fatal1ty endorsed Killer NIC yet? Darn. :lol: 
March 13, 2007 10:38:02 PM

WE do recommend them for our EXTREME Gamers who want an edge on CABLE or T1.

WE've had hundreds of customers tell us that DSL just doesnt have the bandwidth, and it's intermittent.

21 of our 25 "EXTREME" customers with the KILLER NIC have said that they do see a huge difference in gaming because we advised them on getting cable or a T1 line for those who could afford it, but they also have top of the line quad core pc's running on XP PRO which we had configured for them.

So the Killer NIC is a great addition if you are within 2 miles or near a major internet hub, have a State of the art PC with 2 gigs plus mem, and either cable or T1.
March 13, 2007 11:25:37 PM

my thoughts its a money making scam.
This card would have been good in the days of p2 200,
not today.
If your computer is a server and you serve multiple requests
then maybe the card is worth it.
But if your a client (you the gamer) that card does not help you in
performance that you can ever notice.

It is a expensive turd with a K on it.
goto frys (if you have them there) and buy a 99c gigabit nic or use the one onboard.
March 14, 2007 12:03:55 AM

Its also nice if you have a crapy CPU; in that case the KNIC will take some load of the CPU and handlethe conection and it will be noticeable. The catch is, someone who doesn't have cash for upgrading a CPU wont have cash for KNIC any way...

So I guess it works both for extreme systems and for extremely BAD systems. For the middle-high systems, that we all have, its a waste of 150 bucks.
March 14, 2007 12:51:32 AM

It's definately not a scam, it's actually a very cool concept. It definately reduces CPU load, and will give you a few extra FPS in most online games as a result. For hackers it's very sweet. Is it worth the price? Not unless you're rich and can't think of anything better to spend money on.
March 14, 2007 1:51:26 AM

Quote:
WE do recommend them for our EXTREME Gamers who want an edge on CABLE or T1.

WE've had hundreds of customers tell us that DSL just doesnt have the bandwidth, and it's intermittent.

21 of our 25 "EXTREME" customers with the KILLER NIC have said that they do see a huge difference in gaming because we advised them on getting cable or a T1 line for those who could afford it, but they also have top of the line quad core pc's running on XP PRO which we had configured for them.

So the Killer NIC is a great addition if you are within 2 miles or near a major internet hub, have a State of the art PC with 2 gigs plus mem, and either cable or T1.
You also recommend your "EXTREME Gamers" play at 1024x768.
March 14, 2007 1:52:48 AM

odd no one mentioned that it runs linux so to set it straight....


it runs linux

and

you can run apps on the card itself intresting concept but its still to dam much to buy.
March 14, 2007 2:02:43 AM

That's why it's good for hackers. Or really a ton of interesting uses.

And if you can somehow, *gasp*, make do with out the ridiculous heat sink, you can pick on up for about 170

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Still too much, maybe once it drops below 100 I'll think about snagging one to play around with.
March 14, 2007 2:19:58 AM

NO. It's less useful than the PhysX card.
March 14, 2007 2:30:57 AM

Hey 1024x768 is better on the eyes when u play 22 hrs a day straight.

stefx woudnt know about that.

Our customers have told us that 1024x768 is better for the long run of 150 hrs a week. A lot less eyestrain

but stefx wouldnt know about eyestrain, stefx is all flames, no eyes.

Jonny FLAME ON!
March 14, 2007 12:37:16 PM

Quote:
Hey 1024x768 is better on the eyes when u play 22 hrs a day straight.

stefx woudnt know about that.

Our customers have told us that 1024x768 is better for the long run of 150 hrs a week. A lot less eyestrain

but stefx wouldnt know about eyestrain, stefx is all flames, no eyes.

Jonny FLAME ON!


Do you actually condone 150hrs a week of gaming?
March 14, 2007 12:49:43 PM

Of course he does since he does it too. That's why he recommends running 1024x768, because he has no job and cant afford anything better than his old Geforce 2.
March 14, 2007 1:12:57 PM

It's garbage don't buy it. Get a nic with an intel chipset on it.
March 14, 2007 1:20:56 PM

Quote:
Hey everyone,

Sorry if this belongs in the networking hardware category but I was just reading a review in my magazine about a NIC (remember those?) that is geared for gamers called the Killer NIC (official site www.killernic.com).

Basically, all the Killer NIC is is a card that takes all of your networking traffic and processes it independent of the CPU. There's a bunch of other stuff like ping reduction and Gamefirst packet prioritiser, but the big seller is FNA (Flexible Network Architecture), which, if developed for, allows the application to run its networking elements exclusively off the card, bypassing the CPU and Window's network.

Oh yes, it also works out of the box, unlike other PCI devices I can think of *cough* PhysX! *cough*

The big deal about it is that the Killer NIC has apparantly been getting really good reviews. However, I've never heard about it until today.

Does anyone on the TH forums own one? If so, is it worth the entry price?



Ok the short answer is Yes it is good. It does what it says, providing improved performance with your connection/packets etc.

Now the better answer is that unless you just need to fill another PCI slot and have money to burn the vast majority here on the forums do NOT believe its boost is anywhere near worth the high cost of this card.

If you have money running out your bum every time you potty then by all means go for it. If like most of us you have to make wise $ investment decisions to get by and have your PC toys too then steer very clear of this.
March 16, 2007 9:20:50 PM

It may have minimal performance benefits if all you want to use it for is an NIC. However, one of this NIC's major selling factors is that you can write applications and run them from the card's processor and small Linux kernel. There's supposedly a Skype program that can be run off the card, and whatever anyone else wants to write.

If I was going to buy it (and let me make this clear, I don't plan to in the near future unless the price drops), I'd get it for the fun I could have finding and writing applications for the Linux part of the card, not necessarily for the performance benefits. It'd just be an expensive toy.
March 19, 2007 1:24:18 AM

I saw a review on ign about this card, and they said that it was pretty good even increased frame rates if i remember correctly but for $150 you can just save that for a better gfx card or such.
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