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GeForceFX 5900

VGA Card Buyer's Guide 07/2003
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Upon its introduction, NVIDIA's 0.13µ FX 5800 was criticized for its heat problems, insufficient memory bandwidth, and loud cooling solution. Now, only a few months later, NVIDIA is updating/ replacing its flagship model with the FX 5900 (NV 35). The new chip addresses the weaknesses of its predecessor - it comes with a new, much quieter reference cooling solution, uses conventional DDR memory to reduce heat, and is built around a 256 bit memory architecture to increase memory bandwidth. Aside from a few minor tweaks (improved Color Compression and floating point performance; Ultra Shadow), the 3D features were practically left unchanged. The FX 5900 is nominally 50 MHz slower than the FX 5800, though. At the same time, its memory bandwidth has improved from 16.7 GB/s to a very impressive 27.2 GB/s, easily offsetting the clock speed disadvantage. The number of transistors has also risen from ~125 million to ~130 million.

Currently, the FX 5900 Ultra can safely be called the fastest card on the market. Since the Ultra is only available in a (rather oversized) 256 MB version, its official retail price is very high, coming in at $499. A cheaper 128 MB version would make more sense, in our opinion. The non-Ultra version is clocked slightly lower (probably 400/850). At this point, there are no details available about the Value version of the FX 5900.

Versions:

  • GeForceFX 5900 Value 128 MB 256 bit (?) DDR (?/?); official price: $279.
  • GeForceFX 5900 128 MB 256 bit DDR (400/ 850); official price: $399.
  • GeForceFX 5900 Ultra 256 MB 256 bit DDR (450/ 850); official price: $499.
Summary
  1. VGA Buyer's Guide 07/2003
  2. The Price Categories
  3. An Overview Of The Cards
  4. ATi's Current Product Family
  5. Radeon 9600
  6. Radeon 9800
  7. NVIDIA's Current Product Family
  8. GeForceFX 5600
  9. GeForceFX 5900
  10. Other Chip Companies
  11. Notes On Our Noise Level Tests
  12. Benchmarks
  13. UT2003
  14. UT2003 4xFSAA & 8x Aniso
  15. Quake 3 Team Arena
  16. Quake 3 Team Arena 4xFSAA & 8x Aniso
  17. Gunmetal 4xFSAA
  18. ABIT
  19. ABIT Siluro FX 5600 Ultra DT, Continued
  20. ASUS
  21. ASUS V9520/TD, Continued
  22. ASUS V9560 Video Suite
  23. ASUS V9560 Video Suite, Continued
  24. Performance
  25. ASUS V9950
  26. ASUS V9950, Continued
  27. BFG Technology
  28. BFG Asylum GeForceFX 5600 256 MB AGP, Continued
  29. Performance
  30. Gainward
  31. Gainward FX PowerPack! Pro/760XP 128 MB Golden Sample, Continued
  32. Performance
  33. Gainward FX PowerPack! Ultra/760XP 128 MB Golden Sample
  34. Gainward FX PowerPack! Ultra/760XP 128 MB Golden Sample, Continued
  35. Performance
  36. Gainward FX PowerPack! Ultra/1200XP 128 MB Golden Sample
  37. Gainward FX PowerPack! Ultra/1200XP 128 MB Golden Sample, Contined
  38. Performance
  39. Gigabyte
  40. Gigabyte Radeon 9800 PRO 128 MB (GV-R98P128D), Continued
  41. Gigabyte Radeon 9800 PRO 256 MB (GV-R98P256D)
  42. Gigabyte Radeon 9800 PRO 256 MB (GV-R98P256D), Continued
  43. Inno3D
  44. Inno3D Tornado GeForceFX 5200, Continued
  45. Inno3D Tornado GeForceFX 5600
  46. Inno3D Tornado GeForceFX 5600, Continued
  47. Inno3D Tornado GeForceFX 5800
  48. Inno3D Tornado GeForceFX 5800, Continued
  49. Leadtek
  50. Leadtek WinFast A340 TDH, Continued
  51. Leadtek WinFast A340 Ultra TD MyVIVO
  52. Leadtek WinFast A340 Ultra TD MyVIVO, Continued
  53. Leadtek WinFast A310 Ultra TD MyVIVO
  54. Leadtek WinFast A310 Ultra TD MyVIVO, Continued
  55. Leadtek WinFast A300 TD MyVIVO
  56. Leadtek WinFast A300 TD MyVIVO, Continued
  57. Leadtek WinFast A300 TD MyVIVO, Continued
  58. Leadtek WinFast A300 Ultra TD MyVIVO
  59. Leadtek WinFast A300 Ultra TD MyVIVO, Continued
  60. Leadtek WinFast A300 Ultra TD MyVIVO, Continued
  61. Leadtek WinFast A350 TD MyVIVO
  62. Leadtek WinFast A350 TD MyVIVO, Continued
  63. Leadtek WinFast A350 TD MyVIVO, Continued
  64. MSI
  65. MSI FX5200-VTD128, Continued
  66. MSI FX5200-VTD128, Continued
  67. MSI FX5200-TDR128
  68. MSI FX5200-TDR128, Continued
  69. MSI FX5200U-TD128
  70. MSI FX5200U-TD128, Continued
  71. MSI FX5600-VTDR128 [Editor's Choice]
  72. MSI FX5600-VTDR128 [Editor's Choice], Continued
  73. MSI FX5600-VTDR128 [Editor's Choice], Continued
  74. MSI FX5900-TD128
  75. MSI FX5900-TD128, Continued
  76. MSI FX5900-TD128, Continued
  77. PixelView
  78. PixelView GeForceFX 5600, Continued
  79. Performance
  80. PowerColor
  81. PowerColor Radeon 9800 PRO, Continued
  82. Sparkle
  83. Sparkle GeForceFX 5600 (SP8831DV/ 128 MB DDR), Continued
  84. Tyan
  85. Tyan Tachyon G9600 PRO, Continued
  86. Conclusion
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