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Four GeForce 9600 GT Cards Compared

Passively Cooled and Overclocked

The GeForce 9600 GT (G94) was the first graphics chip in Nvidia’s 9-series. Although it only has 64 stream processors, it is just 20% slower than the GeForce 8800 GTS 512 and can easily compete with the older 320 and 640 MB 8800 GTS models.

It’s available with a variety of different memory sizes—512 MB is standard, but almost every vendor offers models with 1 GB and even the first special models with 2 GB are already on the market. Recent tests have shown is that there is almost no difference between 512 and 1,024 MB; you can only tell when running two 3D boards in parallel using SLI at high resolutions. With current graphics drivers, the 9600 GT supports the calculations of extended physics effects in games through Nvidia’s optimized PhysX technology. It can also do calculations on the GPU using Folding@Home, and with the Badaboom video encoder, it converts videos faster than a CPU.

In this test we have four unique models with some nice modifications.

The Asus EN9600GT Silent is cooled passively, while the MSI Hybrid Freezer switches between passive and active cooling depending on chip temperature. Palit delivers an overclocked GeForce 9600 GT Sonic version with a quiet double-slot cooler and small air channel. But our focus is on its HDMI port and DisplayPort outputs. Sparkle increases speed even more. The company has a super-quiet double fan on its Calibre 9600 GT and a button to choose from three different speeds.