Intel Stakes Its Vision of the PC Future with 775 Launch

915G Express Chipset, Continued

Our 915G testbed system, based on the MSI 915P Neo2.

As with all integrated graphics solutions, however, accessing the system memory has very negative effects on 3D performance, since the bandwidth is very low compared to the memory, together with bus width, used on modern graphics cards. Integrated graphics solutions just barely manage to attain the performance of low-cost entry-level graphics cards. A data rate of 8.6 GB/s, which is possible with DDR2 533 memory, doesn't sound bad at first, but this bandwidth has to be shared with all other components in the system as well.

Intel positions the GMA 900 as a real alternative for mainstream graphics cards. Here, Intel bases its definition of "mainstream" on the current figures of overall sold graphics units, rather than the classification of graphics cards, which is what users have come to expect from 3D graphics card manufacturers. "Mainstream" thus refers to individual 3D graphics cards that fall within the $40-$50 range, are of the Radeon 9200 and GeForce FX 5200 class with 64 bit memory interface, and whose 3D performance is less than mediocre, to put it mildly.

Despite DirectX 9 support, the integrated graphics in Intel 915G is everything but an alternative for PC gamers. Instead, Intel targets office users who only occasionally want to play computer games, and it's here that GMA 900 can really score. For one thing, its additional power consumption remains within single-digit wattage figures, while that of external graphics solutions soar up to two and three-digit figures. In addition, the GMA 900 can be passively cooled, the 2D image quality on our test system was very good. For DVI output, Intel is offers a SVDO daughter card for the x16 PCI Express slot. It's unknown if Intel can provide dual-view CRT support by this kind of technique too.

This strange fellow is a Silicon Image 1364ADD2 SVDO card for digital video out, based on the Sil 1364 DVI transmitter chip.
  1. Intel's 775 Launch Mixes Ambition With A Strong Aftertaste
  2. First Contact
  3. Obstacles And Hurdles
  4. More Findings
  5. New Socket: LGA 775
  6. LGA 775 Processor Installation
  7. LGA 775 Processor Installation, Continued
  8. LGA 775 Processor Installation, Continued
  9. MSI's CPU Installation Tool
  10. Transitional Products
  11. Poor Thing: Intel Reference Cooler
  12. New Processors: P4 Prescott Up To 3.6 GHz
  13. Specification Overview
  14. Model And Pricing Information
  15. Processor Overview
  16. New Chipsets: 925X, 915G, 915P, 915GV
  17. New Chipsets: 925X, 915G, 915P, 915GV, Continued
  18. 925X Express Chipset
  19. 915G Express Chipset
  20. 915G Express Chipset, Continued
  21. 915G Express Chipset, Continued
  22. 915P Express Chipset
  23. Chipset Devices
  24. Intel Puts The Lock On Overclocking
  25. How To Unlock The Overclocking Lock
  26. New Memory: DDR2-533, Continued
  27. DDR2 Memory Vendors
  28. Intel Flex Memory Technology
  29. New Interlink: PCI Express
  30. More SATA, More RAID, More Ports
  31. Matrix RAID
  32. Creating A RAID Array
  33. More HD Performance For Free: Command Queuing
  34. More Networking: Intel Wireless Connect Technology
  35. New Audio: High Definition Audio
  36. Asus P5AD2 Premium
  37. Foxconn 925A01
  38. Test Setup
  39. Benchmarks And Settings
  40. Platform Benchmarks
  41. DirectX 8 Benchmarks
  42. DirectX 8 Benchmarks, Continued
  43. DirectX 9 Benchmarks, Continued
  44. Video Benchmarks
  45. Video Benchmarks, Continued
  46. Application Benchmarks
  47. Application Benchmarks, Continued
  48. Synthetic Benchmarks
  49. Synthetic Benchmarks, Continued
  50. Processor Power Consumption
  51. Integrated Graphics Benchmarks
  52. Game Benchmarks
  53. Halo
  54. Far Cry
  55. Video Performance
  56. Networking Benchmarks
  57. Storage Subsystem Benchmarks
  58. Conclusion
  59. A Final Note
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  • So how do you unlock it?