I would like to relate my experiences regarding my 1st purchase of an EVGA product:
After reading many recommendations about EVGA, both regarding the quality of their products and their customer service, I finally decided to give them a try. Their 'Step-up' program also appealed to me. So I placed an order for an 8800GTS ACS3 KO 640MB through an online store based in EU.
Earlier this week, I received my new graphics card. I have to say it looks great, and whilst I have not tested it to the full, I am confident it will perform. However, whilst tidying away the packaging, I took a closer look at the box and noticed that it was identified as an 8800GTS ACS3 640MB, and not the KO version that I had ordered.
I then downloaded nTune and checked the clock speeds. I found it was clocked as a KO. Strange, I thought. So, I went to the EVGA website to check how this product would normally be packaged. The image there clearly identifies KO products on the box.
I began to suspect that the product had originally been a non-KO and had been overclocked as a KO by the supplier. On closer inspection of the box, I noticed that, whilst there were EVGA stickers on both ends of the box, 1 end was not attached completely to the box as there was a card inserted into the gap between the box and flap, allowing the box to be opened without breaking the seal. This added to my suspicions, so I decided to contact the customer service department at EVGA to try and verify the actual part from the serial number and part number.
After 2 days, I had still received no reply, so I sent another mail to their sales department, explaining my concerns and requesting confirmation of the actual product supplied. I also mentioned that I had sent a previous mail to their customer services department 2 days previosly and had not received a response.
Within a day, I received a rather curt response from one of their customer service representatives telling me that the product I had received was indeed the KO version. No explanation as to how the product may have been boxed incorrectly. No apology for any inconvenience caused. In fact, the response was so curt I got the impression that the representative was annoyed that I had found it necessary to contact them twice (or indeed at all). This is not the sort of service I would typically expect from a company that has the reputation of providing quality customer service.
Regarding the incorrect packaging, I have worked with a number of manufacturing companies, and have seen first hand situations where certain packaging materials are out of stock, resulting in the need to package products in alternative packaging. However, every time I have seen this done, some attempt is made to correctly identify the product on the packaging (a sticker for example).
I can't imagine how any company could expect to sell a product as a higher model and at a higher price in a shop if the packaging does not identify the product correctly.
Anyway, to conclude, I would have to say that my first experiences with EVGA are disapponting to say the least. I don't know if anyone else out there has had similar problems with this company, but I would be interested to know.
I would not be overly concerned about the packaging. It can vary and the KO may have been left off of some boxes. The main identification is the ACS3. Some companies just put cover-up stickers on boxes so they don't have to just throw them out. As far as I know, they only make KO's with that cooler. There are three, 1 - GTX, 1 GTS 640MB, and 1- 320MB GTS, all three are factory overclocked.
You have the right cooler, the right card, the right clock speeds, a step up program, and a lifetime warranty. Just enjoy the card and don't worry about the print on the box.
No, there's also a backplate and some other under the hood mods
Here you can see the backplate I was talking about
And also the shroud uses a thermalpad to get good conductivity between the shroud and card, and also has a tad more metal parts on it
Beyond raw clock frequency tuning, EVGA modified the cooling solution. The standard cooler has a copper block for the processor and a steel block for the memory modules. The difference lies in the shroud and backing plate. The standard cooler uses a plastic shroud to channel the air induced via an active fan over the heat pipe and fins and out of the card. EVGA added a steel shroud and backing plate. The shroud has a thermal pad to transfer heat from the cooling fins to the shroud for greater surface area. The backing plate on the reverse side of the card operates on the same premise. A thermal pad between the backing plate and the reverse side of the card aids the flow of heat to the backing plate. In addition to holding the heatsink tightly to the processor and memory, the screws can act as a conduit to the backing plate and eventually off the card.
And that's directly off toms itself
Ah, thanks for clarification. Wasn't positive on that one.