|Test System Configuration|
|CPU||Intel Core i7-2600K (Sandy Bridge) LGA 1155, 3.40 GHz, 8 MB L3 Cache Overclocked to 4.00 GHz at 1.25 V, 40x Turbo Boost multiplier, EIST/C1E On|
|Motherboard||Asus P8P67 Deluxe, BIOS 1502 (03/02/2011): Intel P67 Express, LGA 1155|
|RAM||Kingston KHX1600C9D3K2/8GX: 8 GB DDR3-1600 CAS 9-9-9-27|
|Hard Drive||Samsung 470 Series MZ5PA256HMDR, 256 GB SSD|
|Sound||Integrated HD Audio|
|Network||Integrated Gigabit Networking|
|Power||Seasonic X760 SS-760KM: ATX12V v2.3, EPS12V, 80 PLUS Gold|
|OS||Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate x64|
|Row 10 - Cell 0||AMD Catalyst 11.5|
|Chipset||Intel INF 220.127.116.119|
Keeping a graphics test honest requires the minimization of performance-hindering influences from the rest of the system. We started by overclocking our CPU to 4.0 GHz, then added Samsung’s super-fast SSD.
While older games often suffer from latencies higher than CAS 9 at DDR3-1600, those bottlenecks only occur during moderate graphics loads. The graphically-intense settings of today’s comparison shift the bottlenecks back towards our tested GPUs. Setting the baseline for “better than adequate” is Kingston’s 8 GB DDR3-1600 CAS 9 dual-channel kit.
Seasonic’s X760 power supply became a member of our standardized hardware set by offering excellent efficiency, modular cables, and a solid reputation for reliability. Today, its 80 PLUS Gold efficiency aids in a more accurate assessment of system power consumption.
|Crysis||Patch 1.2.1, DirectX 10, 64-bit executable, benchmark tool Test Set 1: High Quality, No AA Test Set 2: High Quality, 4x AA|
|F1 2010||v1.01, Run with -benchmark example_benchmark.xml Test Set 1: Ultra Quality, No AA Test Set 2: Ultra Quality, 4x AA|
|Just Cause 2||Version 18.104.22.168, Built-In Benchmark "Concrete Jungle" Test Set 1: Very High Quality, No AA, 16x AF Test Set 2: Very High Quality, 4x AA, 16x AF|
|Metro 2033||Full Game, Built-In Benchmark, "Frontline" Scene Test Set 1: DX11, Medium, AAA, 4x AF, No PhysX, No DoF Test Set 2: DX11, Medium, 4x AA, 16x AF, No PhysX, No DoF|
|S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call Of Pripyat||Call Of Pripyat Benchmark version, all options, HDAO Test Set 1: Ultra Preset, DX11 EFDL, Ultra SSAO, No AA Test Set 2: Ultra Preset, DX11 EFDL, Ultra SSAO, 4x MSAA|
|Synthetic Benchmarks and Settings|
|3DMark 11||Version: 22.214.171.124, Benchmark Only|
For example, there are few, if any, reviews on noiseless CPUs (meaning, fanless) and too few if any reviews on GPUs without fans. Small form factors have thankfully been addressed a bit, but some of the smallest sizes are still not represented well in reviews.
Even if you are into killing evil Zargons with your pimped out main computer (which many are not anyway), there is still a cool factor of a computer that fits in your hand that can be used in other locations like a kitchen, or living room, or both since you can pick it up and move it easily.
Articles like this, that might not pertain to a main computer (or may), are interesting, since most of us have several computers, and know several people that ask our assistance in making decisions, and there are often criteria like this involved.
Still, I also like the idea of reviewing different approaches of hardware pieces. We all have different needs, so different hardware (forms) need to be addressed as well 8)
The Tom's Hardware team put a lot of effort into getting as many companies onboard as possible for this. PowerColor should have been excluded since its product was actually too late to meet the test deadline, but that's a non-issue since the card didn't show up. And Galaxy, Galaxy Where Art Thou? You would think companies like that would be in touch with ALL the major sites, wouldn't you?
I really don't know what I would think, I'm completely unfamiliar with the process of acquiring test hardware from companies. Is this really unusual behavior from Galaxy and Power Color (ignoring or passing up a request to review one of their new products)?
As for PowerColor, they said they sent one. Either they screwed up, or something happened to the card along the way. Either way, I wasn't going to worry about the cause of this conundrum since it was too late to deal with.
I really don't know what's up with Galaxy. Chances are they might have simply cut their marketing department.