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Sparkle Fan

Four GeForce 9600 GT Cards Compared
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The idea behind the Calibre cooler is two fans that can be expanded like wings. Aside from the cool looking aesthetic component, we could not measure any difference with our open test platform, though. In 2D applications, the temperature measured 44 °C, while under 3D permanent load it reached 66 °C. The measured temperatures and the noise level of 36.3 dB(A) remain constant, whether the fan was folded or expanded and whether the card was under load or idle.

There are two metal clamps per fan, which hold the folding mechanism in position, like a springIn the middle there are four holes per fan that serve as latching points for the cooler wings

When the wing is at the correct angle, it latches into the holesThis is how the Calibre looks with folded fans sitting directly on the cooler

When both wings are expanded and latched, the warm exhaust is widely dispersedWhen the fans are expanded, you can see that the lower metal plate serves as a cooler

The angled fans blow air over the components and the voltage transformers on the backOn our test mainboard, the Asus P5E3 Deluxe, the clamps of the next PCIe slot caused interference

When the Calibre wings are expanded with gentle force, the mounting and cooling fins touch each other

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  • 3 Hide
    JAYDEEJOHN , September 26, 2008 9:58 AM
    So it beats the GTX eh? And you can find brand new nVidia drivers, but no ATI ones? And wheres the 4670? Got halfway thru, decided to skip the rest
  • 6 Hide
    jaragon13 , September 26, 2008 10:12 AM
    What about the HD 4850? It costs less than the "last 8800 GTS 512's"
    Asus sells them for what? 170 dollars,free shipping on Newegg?
    Maybe I even saw one @ 160...
  • 2 Hide
    Sus-penders , September 26, 2008 12:11 PM
    Why would anyone get an 8800GTS for $179 when you can buy a better performing HD 4850, for LESS money??? ATI still exists, you know...
  • 3 Hide
    Ryun , September 26, 2008 1:03 PM
    No offense, as the article and tests run were good (I especially like the overall FPS charts), but this information would have been more pertinent, like, 6 months ago.
  • -4 Hide
    Niva , September 26, 2008 1:13 PM
    Uh, I don't get what the people about are upset for. It's a good article, I enjoyed reading and seeing where these cards fit into the scheme of things. I know ATI has made a comeback with their recent cards but until their drivers are completely open and stable I'll stick with nVidia myself so I especially enjoyed this article. Thanks Toms!
  • -2 Hide
    L1qu1d , September 26, 2008 1:37 PM
    Waste of 3 mins, it makes very little sense, the 9600 GTs in sli are around the 280 GTX in performance, yet it manages to get destroyed by the 4870.

    This article would've meant something around the time the cards came out...now I'd much rather like to see the 4850 cards compared or 260s or w.e else that is this gen.
  • 0 Hide
    MooseMuffin , September 26, 2008 2:17 PM
    NivaUh, I don't get what the people about are upset for. It's a good article, I enjoyed reading and seeing where these cards fit into the scheme of things. I know ATI has made a comeback with their recent cards but until their drivers are completely open and stable I'll stick with nVidia myself so I especially enjoyed this article. Thanks Toms!


    Exactly what is open about nvidia's drivers?
  • 0 Hide
    wh3resmycar , September 26, 2008 2:38 PM
    nobody reads the introduction anymore?
  • 5 Hide
    warezme , September 26, 2008 2:49 PM
    warms my heart to see the old 8800GTX included in this test list.

    It's amazing this ancient cards at default speed still sit in the middle of the pack and quickly rise to the top when you turn up AA and texture quality up, beating most every other card cept for 260GTX and SLI and CF rigs.

    It also explains why a pair of old 8800GTX's in SLI OC'ed to at least Ultra speeds on a fast rig are still very hard to out perform by any single card (period)
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , September 26, 2008 2:52 PM
    There is a reason to get the 9600GT over the 8800GT, power consumption. Look at the numbers, the 9600GT has 1/2 the number of shaders (hence a smaller die). I know the shader clock runs a little faster but a good quality stock PSU with 300W (real, like antec, corsair, etc) should be fine for running it.
  • 0 Hide
    bf2gameplaya , September 26, 2008 5:08 PM
    The 8800GTS/512 is still a top performer...not bad for a "two" generations old card, if you believe the marketing.

    I am a loyal Nvidia customer and I wont touch the GTX280. I am patiently waiting for the GeForce 11 series.

  • 3 Hide
    sgmeridian , September 26, 2008 5:52 PM
    Why doesn't Tom's use the 9800GTX+ in these benchmarks? All we ever see are scores for the slower, now defunct 9800GTX.
  • -3 Hide
    GlItCh017 , September 26, 2008 6:00 PM
    9600 GT...I got nothing.
  • -7 Hide
    computerninja7823 , September 26, 2008 6:04 PM
    hey pepelan what kind MANURFACTURING problems are their!??!! I have a old geforce 2 gts and it has worked every day...day in and day out for ever. And I also have a geforce 4200ti same thing. last time i checked nvidia did'nt make hardware. so dont say nvidia makes bad "HARDWARE" cause they dont. i have 2 8800gt's and theve worked flawlessly! my friend buys ati cards and they suck hard...he's bought like 5 of them then bought a nvidia card and no problems after that! this is a great article
  • -3 Hide
    njalterio , September 26, 2008 6:29 PM
    Computerningja, you are such a tool. Nvidia does make hardware: It's called a graphics card you dunce. Don't believe me? Check this out:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_hardware

    Right there on the list of types of hardware are video cards. I will agree, Nvidia DOES NOT have any glaring manufacturing flaws, but neither does ATI as you suggest through your friends experience. So he bought five ATI cards and none worked? Please. And no, this is not a great article. Why would I care about the negligible performance difference between four different brands of the same old card? This would only have been helpful six months ago.
  • 1 Hide
    ravenware , September 26, 2008 7:19 PM
    NivaUh, I don't get what the people about are upset for. It's a good article, I enjoyed reading and seeing where these cards fit into the scheme of things. I know ATI has made a comeback with their recent cards but until their drivers are completely open and stable I'll stick with nVidia myself so I especially enjoyed this article. Thanks Toms!


    I ran an ATI Radeon 9800XT for 3 years and never had problems with their driver suite. I had a much more enjoyable experience with the ATI card than my current 7800GT card.

    And yes I would buy the 4850 over the 9600GT, 8800GT and 8800GTS.

  • 1 Hide
    zbranigan , September 26, 2008 7:22 PM
    Bought a 9600GT from NewEgg for $99 bucks with free shipping. I had trouble finding solid benchmark comparisons. Here they are. I was beginning to doubt my purchase. Tried Assassins Creed on my 8600GT this card is much better. Tried Crysis, but that game is only good to make you kick yourself for any card purchase. Thanks Tom.
  • 4 Hide
    Chuck Norris , September 26, 2008 7:37 PM
    Thanks for the article, I appreciate all of the testing. I would have liked to have seen the 4670 included as well, though, considering it's the direct parallel to the 9600GT for price.
  • 1 Hide
    TheFace , September 26, 2008 8:24 PM
    I would like to say I appreciate throwing the 3850 256mb in there. Got mine after they just came out when it was impossible to find a 3870 anywhere..for weeks... I appreciate it because I know exactly how far behind my graphics solution is. Just upgraded cpu, mobo, and RAM. HDD, and Vid card soon to follow.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , September 26, 2008 11:34 PM
    Long Live ATI HD48** Series :D  and this article is outdated! Why didn't you review Geforce MX? Boring Toms, Really, I Mean it!

    oh, and why fight? we just want better hardwares for lesser money... calm down buddies...
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