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Exploration into Overclocked AGP Graphics


On a performance level, a 133 MHz bus speed on the BX platform performs very well and shows a solid improvement on almost every single card. The CAS latency doesn't seem to make such a huge difference but it may be worth looking into if you feel that you need every single % squeezed out of your system. We also noticed that the heat differences from running a card at the two bus speeds was basically nothing so you need not worry about heat issues if you take the 133 MHz plunge.

This situation is interesting for two kinds of people. Die hard overclockers may want to try upping the bus speed with their Pentium III 550E or 600E processor to reach 733 or 800 MHz if they are lucky, thus benefiting from the overclocked processor as well as from the superior performance of BX at 133 MHz FSB. People who don't really want to overclock their CPUs, but who don't mind that their graphics card is running at 89 MHz AGP might want to plug an official Coppermine processor for 133 MHz FSB (ending with 'EB') into their BX-board. In this case there is still the benefit of the high performance that BX offers at 133 MHz FSB, which is superior to any platform that officially supports this FSB-clock.

After testing all the boards I had handy, we've learned that not only does the 3D-chip matter but also the board vendor design itself comes into play as we've seen the same 3D-chip fail and pass running at 133 MHz bus. By no means is this a complete list of graphics cards available or that will work but it should give you an idea of which popular cards should work in case you wish to switch over immediately to the fastest platform setup available right now. We also cannot tell you if the 3D-cards might suffer long term damage from running at an AGP-clock that's 33% beyond spec.