I like the quality of Gainward, the card I have now I can peg the red lines overclocking without artifacts. I dont see a need to voltage mod mine since I can hit high overclock without it.
I toasted a Visiontek due to a huge space between HSF and core. the space was from the glue being too thick when it dried leaving a 1mm + gap.
December 14, 2001 1:05:47 AM
I had exactly the same two cards in mind, Leadtek or Hercules. Not brought a product from either before so took me a while to make my mind up.
In the end I decided to go with Leadtek for the simple reason that it was cheaper. Both cards seem to have same features, and both have fairly poor bunded software (Leadtek comes with two old games, while hercules comes with just a quakeIII demo). I doubt there is much difference performance wise between the two, as with all Ti500 cards. Its rumored that the Leadtek has better imagine quality, but ive only ever seen that stated in one review.
They are both companies known for producing good quality cards. I say go with the cheapest =)
Visiontek and PNY both offer lifetime warranties on their cards, but if you overclock and kill your card I wonder if they'll still give you another one. Visiontek probably will but I dunno about PNY.
Supposedly the PNY overclocks very well, AND looks cool with a black PCB and Silver Heat/Ram sinks.
I'm singing a different tune now. Noticed it was just about impossible to get the Ti500 card I wanted. So I started looking at classic GeForce3 cards - I wanted a guarantee of at least classic GF3 level of performance. I read the <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.html?i=1507" target="_new">NVIDIA GeForce3 Roundup - July 2001</A> article at Anandtech, read the <A HREF="http://www.newegg.com/app/CustratingReview.asp?item=14-..." target="_new">user reviews</A> for the Gainward CardExpert Powerpack!!! at NewEgg.com, and then placed my order!
I felt that the Gainward CardExpert Powerpack!!! Golden Sample (with VIVO, TV out, and DVI) deal was to good to pass up ($265). Wasn't initially planing on overclocking but it looks like this card overclocks well and provides good 2D images (best in the roundup). I'll just swap out the nVidia drivers and overclock to get the equivalent functionality and near the performance level of a GF3 Ti500.
"... I was lucky enough to receive Gainward’s newest product, the GeForce3 PowerPack!!! for reviewing purposes. As I found out, this wasn’t your ordinary PowerPack!!! as it had a “golden sample” sticker on the front. I wasn’t exactly sure what the “golden sample” sticker signified but according to Overclockers Austrailia the “golden sample” cards are cards that tested much higher than the normal PowerPack!!! cards and <font color=green>are guaranteed to run at a speed of at least 220 MHz for the core and 480 MHz for the memory</font color=green>. I was anxious to test out all the features and play around with the utilities, so I quickly opened up the package and got to work. ..."
"... As far as VIVO GeForce3 cards, our choice was not as simple. We had to pick from a selection of 3 cards, each with a strong point. When forced to make a recommendation, we had to go with the VIVO Gainward CARDEXPERT GeForce3 PowerPack !!! due to it's high image quality, good VIVO features, and low price. As mentioned before, the Gainward CARDEXPERT GeForce3 PowerPack !!! was the only card that appeared to have as sharp of an image as the ATI Radeon DDR. Add to this the rather low price of $349 and standard DVI-out port, and the Gainward CARDEXPERT GeForce3 PowerPack !!! seems like a great deal; and it is. ..."