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Nvidia GeForce 9800 GTX Review

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April 1, 2008 12:49:26 PM

The 9800 GTX is not a revolutionarily new card. We look at the card's design and test it against a strong set of competitors. How well does its performance match up with its name?

http://www.tomshardware.com/2008/04/01/nvidia_geforce_9800gtx_review/index.html
April 1, 2008 1:31:21 PM

I'm glad tom's reviewed the gtx against a variety of cards, instead of the shameful lack of this in the gx2 review!
April 1, 2008 1:44:10 PM

Man, this is even more disappointing than I had feared it would be, I'd hoped it would at least top the 8800 ultra by a few % but not even being able to do that (I'll be getting a 1920x1200 monitor) has significantly reduced my will to get a new PC at all :( , and I was so excited about a new PC last night too :( .
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April 1, 2008 1:54:14 PM

Don't get the 9800 GTX, just wait for the 9900 GTX/GX2 or get something else. Even a 9800 GTX here costs less than a 8800 GTX which is a joke. NVIDIA really screwed this up.
a b U Graphics card
April 1, 2008 2:19:30 PM

This is starting to look alot like the 1900xt vs the 1900xtx vs the 1950xtx debacle. All three of those cards were extremely close, using the same arch. Tho they did come out in less than a year from each other. Hmmmm.. Of course then we all know what happened, nVidia came out with the 8xxx series. For 300 bucks, still a good deal for those who dont have a 8xxx series or a 3xxx ATI series
April 1, 2008 2:31:41 PM

I'm putting the final touches on a new system right now and was debating between buying a pair of 8800GT or GTS cards, or scavenging the 8600GTs out of my old box (I got them cheap, and I had done no research at all; I went to Fry's and asked a frigging salesperson, who told me what he thought I wanted to hear. I consider that purchase to be a case of paying the "idiot tax.") and using them until the "next big thing" came along.

I looked at a 9800GX2 but...ugh. Heat dumping into the case? And if I ever wanted to SLI them the heat problem would be even worse. I'm just not sure this card is a good investment; I want something that'll last me a while, not a gimmick. "Thanks but no thanks," I said.

So I thought I'd wait and see what the 9800GTX was like...and I'm not impressed by this review. I despise an extremely noisy video card, and it sounds like that's exactly what this one is; I'd imagine it's absurd if you SLI them. The performance seems nice, though; I'm just not sure whether or not it's nice enough to justify the irritation factor.

Hopefully the 9900s will be powerful without rattling the windows in your house.
a c 84 U Graphics card
a b Î Nvidia
April 1, 2008 2:32:13 PM

but hey, it uses a lot less power. :p 
April 1, 2008 2:37:25 PM

Yeah I'm not impressed at all... even though I knew this GTS knockoff was coming. :(  I would really like a new next gen chip to come out and replace my 7900gtx sli setup. Wonder how much longer I will have to wait for the next gen version of the 8800gtx.
April 1, 2008 2:37:31 PM

hahahahahahaha the 3870x2 beats the sh**e outta the 9800gtx in Crysis 1280*1024 with 4xAA+AA...hillarious :p 
April 1, 2008 2:39:26 PM

ATI has the ball now :) )
a b U Graphics card
April 1, 2008 2:39:46 PM

Ive heard early Q4 for them, tho maybe earlier. Plus, dare I say, theres the 4xxx from ATI
April 1, 2008 2:52:15 PM

JAYDEEJOHN said:
Of course then we all know what happened, nVidia came out with the 8xxx series. For 300 bucks, still a good deal for those who dont have a 8xxx series or a 3xxx ATI series


Yeah that is true. I am sure this makes the 8800GTX owners happy seeing that their 1.5 year old card is still the shiz niz.

JAYDEEJOHN said:
Ive heard early Q4 for them, tho maybe earlier. Plus, dare I say, theres the 4xxx from ATI



Now would be perfect timing to unleash the RV770. This gives the Chrome time to move in too [:thegreatgrapeape:7]
April 1, 2008 2:56:26 PM

Unfortunately no self respecting gamer plays a FPS at 1280x1024.
April 1, 2008 3:00:00 PM

SpinachEater said:
Yeah that is true. I am sure this makes the 8800GTX owners happy seeing that their 1.5 year old card is still the shiz niz.




Now would be perfect timing to unleash the RV770.


Couldn't agree more, I want some real competition. Not just milking the G92's out which the g92 was a bit milking the g80 core out.

But it puts a smile on my face that the Ultra still takes a big lead. For such an old card. Just like the GTX, I bought the 8800GTX pretty long ago, and it still kicks ass.

Another thing says, we should have bought the GTX when it came out, and wouldn't have to upgrade for over more then a year now. I think that is a very budget like question.

Anyway, I think if you had bought the ULTRA or GTX from the beginning it came out, it still does great job for its bang, also because it's more than a year old now.
April 1, 2008 3:00:21 PM

bydesign said:
Unfortunately no self respecting gamer plays a FPS at 1280x1024.



^ hehe




Cow = 8800 GTX, Milker = NV, Milk = $$$
a b U Graphics card
April 1, 2008 3:03:08 PM

Chrome gamers do!!!! Chrome FTW!!!!!
April 1, 2008 3:04:21 PM

The 9800GTsuX might seem more attractive at maybe $250. ... at $350 its just daylight robbery. Fanboy zombies would, of course, deny it vehemently and hurl curses and expletives at me...
a b U Graphics card
April 1, 2008 3:10:32 PM

mihirkula said:
The 9800GTsuX might seem more attractive at maybe $250. ... at $350 its just daylight robbery. Fanboy zombies would, of course, deny it vehemently and hurl curses and expletives at me...

How bout I just hurl? :o  :o  :lol:  :lol:  Its what it is. For someone not having anything close to this card, its not bad. A let down? Sure, but its better than we were a year ago when 8800GTS320 was going for $300 US
April 1, 2008 3:22:19 PM

Then they shudve at least named it 9800GTS at least... the GTX is a sort of a premiuim spot ...like miss world.
April 1, 2008 3:25:14 PM

All I have to say is that the GT200 better make some real leaps and bounds after all of this G92 frazzle dazzle. I might have to toss out my PC and get a PS3...oh god the thought makes me cringe...
April 1, 2008 3:26:28 PM

This is just a more efficent card with similar performance to the 8800GTX. Less power consumption and less heat. Most of its improvements can be attributed to the 65 nm process. Although the memory being 256 bit and 512MB, but still performing similar to the 8800GTX indicates something else is going on as well. Maybe the new compression process I've been hearing about?

Its more of a 8800GTX revision than a new generation. Not an upgrade, but still an advancement.
Good buy for those without an 8800.
a c 169 U Graphics card
a b Î Nvidia
April 1, 2008 3:28:22 PM

TOMSHARDARE:
http://www.tomshardware.com/2008/04/01/nvidia_geforce_9...

So come on, Nvidia. Is this really the best you can do 17 months after the 8800 GTX?

Nvidia GeForce 9800 GTX: A card that's almost as fast as the 8800 Ultra at a much lower price is a good thing. But a year and a half after the release of the GeForce 8 series, and even though AMD doesn't really have anything that can go head to head with this card, we'd have liked a little more punch to replace the 8800 GTX with (which is also now being sold for under $400). What we got instead was a card that's very noisy under load and limited by a stingy 512 MB of memory. These drawbacks are especially disappointing given that the 8800 GTS 512 MB is very similar and less expensive.

+ Performance close to that of the 8800 Ultra at half the price / Support for HybridPower (with compatible motherboards) - Noisy under load / Only 512 MB of memory / Not different enough from the 8800 GTS 512 MB, 8800 GTX and Ultra, although they're previous-generation cards and often less expensive.

HOTHARDWARE:
http://www.hothardware.com/Articles/NVIDIA_GeForce_9800...

ANANDTECH:
http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3275&p=7
So, now that we have the 9800 GTX in the mix, what has changed? Honestly, not as much in terms of performance stack as in price. Yes, the 8800 Ultra is better than the 9800 GTX where memory bandwidth is a factor, but other than that the relationship of the 9800 GTX to the 3870 X2 is largely the same. Of course, NVIDIA would never sell 8800 Ultra at below the 3870 X2 price of $400 (the binned 90nm G80 glued on there didn’t come cheap).
April 1, 2008 3:29:12 PM

Petimus said:


Its more of a 8800GTX revision than a new generation. Not an upgrade, but still an advancement.
Good buy for those without an 8800.



^ nah, it is GTS v3.0 It doesn't deserve the GTX status.
a c 169 U Graphics card
a b Î Nvidia
April 1, 2008 3:39:24 PM

Agreed^^ 8800GTX beats a 9800GTX in high resolutions with AA and AF due to its 768MB memory compared to 512MB of 9800GTX
April 1, 2008 3:45:56 PM

Maziar said:
Agreed^^ 8800GTX beats a 9800GTX in high resolutions with AA and AF due to its 768MB memory compared to 512MB of 9800GTX
You would think they could at least make an 8800Ultra on a die shrink, but Nvidia is determined to not release a faster product.
a b U Graphics card
April 1, 2008 3:48:54 PM

Also, did you read about the Vsync problem in DX10 games? If forced off, anands found that it reduces fps. So, at least in DX10 games, leave the vsync on, as this may have a large impact on your fps. They also sorta referred this problem to slower cpus, as it limits over clock improvements on the cpu to nil
April 1, 2008 3:50:08 PM

lol i just read the anandtech page..TRI SLI 9800GTX gives 49 fps for Crysis at 19*12....a cool $1000 for this performance.....it keeps getting funnier and funnier :p 
April 1, 2008 4:06:06 PM

Actually Anantech gives it 49.1 FPS

and Nothardware.com gives it 59 FPS for TRI-SLi at 1900 by 1020

with SLi 9800 GTX getting 56 FPS at the same res

best bet it to get 2 9800GTX's or 1 9800X2 if you want high end gaming

if you want best bangforbuck solution then its still the 8800 GTS512
April 1, 2008 4:13:00 PM

Well I was thinking of selling my oldest GTS 640 and Stepping Up to a 9800 GTX from my other one, but I'm sticking to the old school set up for now. If the 9800 performed better and had more memory/memory bus, I woulda done it. I agree that the ball is in Radeon's court right now.
April 1, 2008 4:36:06 PM

The whole 9xxx series is a joke. It's the same exact technology as the 8800gt, why wasn't the 8800gt called the 9800gt? here's what everything should have been called.

8800gt -> 8900gt
8800gts (512mb) -> 8900gts
9600gt -> 8700gt
9800gx2 -> 8900gx2
9800gtx -> 8900gtx

any of the 900s could have also been replaced by 850s. Bottom line is that 9000 indicates a next generation of chip which it's not. Look at the differences in 4000, 5000, 6000, 7000, 8000. This really is ATIs big chance, unfortuneately I am pretty sure they will still blow it.
April 1, 2008 4:59:40 PM

wow thats almost exactly what i was about to post with the naming nurgletheunclean. but i would still keep the 9600gt where its name. I know its still g92 but its performance is appropiate for the name.

Ok so at least it beats the 8800gtx most of the time at 1920x1200 at least they didn't screw that up. I will say its been an interesting morning and that if its was named 8900gtx which is what I would have named it would perform where everyone expected. still goes to show that whoever bought an 8800 gtx still doesn't have anything in the market to buy for a significant performance upgrade after 17 months.
crysis results with 3 of them are pretty cool though. I do beleive the price on these suckers will fall steadily over the next 6 months though. especially when we get a real gpu upgrade.
April 1, 2008 5:06:50 PM

looks like I'll be holding on to my trusty 8800gtx for another year or so.
April 1, 2008 5:09:48 PM

Egad! Now what? C'mon ATi...give us the HD 4xxx!!!
a b U Graphics card
April 1, 2008 5:18:53 PM

After reading this review, I am glad I went with the GX2. I was going to wait for the GTX but it is even more of a disappointment (to some people) than the GX2
April 1, 2008 5:19:57 PM

Well it is NV's naming scheme, they can do what ever they want with it.
April 1, 2008 5:27:04 PM

Damn, been waiting for these benchmarks so I could finally be content with gettin a 8800 gts and now they are raising the prices on them. Trying to suck people into slapping down the extra cash for the 9800 gtx.
April 1, 2008 5:34:13 PM

radium69 said:
Couldn't agree more, I want some real competition. Not just milking the G92's out which the g92 was a bit milking the g80 core out.

But it puts a smile on my face that the Ultra still takes a big lead. For such an old card. Just like the GTX, I bought the 8800GTX pretty long ago, and it still kicks ass.

Another thing says, we should have bought the GTX when it came out, and wouldn't have to upgrade for over more then a year now. I think that is a very budget like question.

Anyway, I think if you had bought the ULTRA or GTX from the beginning it came out, it still does great job for its bang, also because it's more than a year old now.


I figured I'd be running a whole new generation by now?? Never did I imagine the pair of 8800GTX I bought back in december of 2006 would still be kicking ass and taking names against the latest and greatest.

Its a testament to the design of the 8800 series that 8800GTX and Ultras are still going strong but a disgraceful rape by Nvidia marketing group, milking every last drop out of the series. All 9 series cards do not deserve a 9 series, especially this one 512MB on a GTX, whatever.
April 1, 2008 5:35:09 PM

Wow ya they botched this one...the 9800GTX can't beat the 8800GTX/8800Ultra? Come on...sad.

All that said though, still an excellent card for a much more "reasonable" price, but like someone else said, the 8800GTS G92 512MB still wins the price/performance point.

How could they not up the memory? I know there must be some technical reason they didn't, but if they could have just slapped in the more memory I think this card would be completely taking names.
April 1, 2008 5:59:41 PM

all of you who complain I assume wanted to buy this card? If not then just be patient and wait... you will not buy this card if you are smart.
April 1, 2008 6:13:24 PM

tekzor said:
all of you who complain I assume wanted to buy this card? If not then just be patient and wait... you will not buy this card if you are smart.


Why?
April 1, 2008 6:19:30 PM

The 9800GTX is looking like the April fools joke of the day.
But I'm not taking this too seriously anyway since much better cards will be out in a few months.
April 1, 2008 6:22:35 PM

stabgotham said:
Why?


Cos its not smart.
April 1, 2008 6:40:16 PM

The fact that in the Toms' review, they had to tell you about the addition of an LED to the PCB tells you all you need to know IMO...
In the UK an OCed XFX 8800GTX can be had for less than a 9800GTX in my eyes, the 9xxx isn't a good buy!
Thanks nv, but no thanks.
I think when I rebuild, i'll be going with ATi by the look of it! :) 
April 1, 2008 6:45:38 PM

tekzor said:
all of you who complain I assume wanted to buy this card? If not then just be patient and wait... you will not buy this card if you are smart.


Well, you could argue that say your building a new comp right now and have decided you're going to do step-up program for a 9900 GTX. The 9800GTX isn't too bad of a deal if its a hold over to 9900 or new technology. :p 
April 1, 2008 6:48:42 PM

give me 9800gtx @ 750mhz core and 1gb ram i will have 1 guess my (g80) 880gts 640mb will be ok till i get a 24" monitor



i guess i will be waiting for 9900s or will nv call it 10900s to reley masse up the naming scheme
April 1, 2008 6:59:50 PM

The reasoning for Nvidia's choice to release all this remodeled old hardware as new hardware is quite simple... Lack of competition! Everyone is thinking about these video cards that Nvidia is releasing from the point of view of the consumer which is understandable, but stop and think from the point of view of Nvidia. They have had no competition in the graphics market for going on 2 years! Now ATI is just barely knocking on the door with the 3870 X2. Why the heck would Nvidia feel it necessary to go release "true" new technology when their old technology is still at very least matching all other competition! If it was my company and I wanted to maximize the incoming money, then I would do the same thing. Keep making money on a product that you have been making for close to 2 years and has very good driver support and is still the top gaming graphics card.

Sure Nvidia could have and probably planned on developing new technology and they may even have it tucked in their back pocket waiting for ATI to really step up to the plate, but right now they have no reason to release new technology because they know everyone will either wait for that new technology or go ahead and buy whats available. They do not want to make the same mistake intel did with releasing their 45 nm processors for a month, then "limiting production" and expecting to sell the 65 nm processors after already giving the taste of the new technology to the consumers! Now consumers are just getting aggitated because they have to wait for intel to "increase production". Nvidia was smart enough to just not let us have a taste of the new technology and so we are oblivious to some extent as consumers because we don't know for sure that something better is there.

Yes, providing a true next generation graphics card would have put them that much further ahead of ATI dominating the video card market even more but why rush into that? Their true next generation graphics solution will probably kick the pants off ATI's next generation just like the 8800 ultra and GTX did for so long. So Nvidia is just playing a waiting game i'm sure. They are just waiting for a reason to introduce the true next generation video cards. Basically they are just maximizing the profit on their old technology which I agree sucks, but can you blame them? If anything, ATI needs to get their **** together and start making Nvidia sweat, but they can't and won't though I am not sure what their issue is. Think about it, ATI released the 3870 X2 almost 2 years after the 8800 ultra and it barely matches its performance!!

So I agree that the performance of these "next generation" video cards doesn't seem to be so "next generation", but in order to understand the situation and possibly not grow to completely despise Nvidia, look at the market from Nvidia's point of view.
April 1, 2008 7:09:12 PM

ok see your point but true new technology better be a lot lot lot better as thay had 2 years to worke on it just look at intel and Nehalem
a b U Graphics card
April 1, 2008 7:13:48 PM

The real purpose of this card is to market to the yutzes that build their PC at Dell and see this:

  • nVidia GeForce 8800 Ultra 768MB [add $800 or $24/month1]
  • nVidia GeForce 9800GTX [add $900 or $30/month1]

    NOTE: I just copied the 8800 Ultra line from their site. They really are charging $800 for it! :pt1cable: 

    They can select it believing it must be the best because 9 > 8 and $900 > $800.

    It is not targeted at people that read reviews!
    April 1, 2008 7:16:09 PM

    Quote:
    the Radeon HD 3870 X2, whose consumption we measured with Unreal Tournament III because it was just too underused with Test Drive Unlimited (We measured 235 W, which was actually less than the 8800 GT).

    In other words the power test is worthless as the 9800GTX was underused and got the lower power numbers.
    Quote:
    What that means is that a brand-name 350 W power-supply will be enough to feed a system based on this card.

    Suggesting a 350watt PSU for the 9800GTX is border line liable.

    Newegg has the EVGA 9800GTX requirements as 450watts.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130339&ref=lmcd
    Quote:
    Minimum of a 450 Watt power supply.
    (Minimum recommended power supply with +12 Volt current rating of 24 Amp Amps.)
    Minimum 550 Watt for SLI mode system.
    (Minimum recommended power supply with +12 Volt current rating of 30 Amp Amps.)
    !