Hercules - The Mythical Hero
Hercules is continuing its very successful 3D Prophet series. Like Gainward, Hercules tries to set itself and its products apart from the competition. The brand name alone inspires trust in many prospective buyers. Hercules' chosen champions in this review are the new Titanium Ti200, and the Ti500 versions of the 3D Prophet III series. Little is known about different card layouts or feature sets, but there have been reports of early Ti500 boards still based on the old six-layer PCB. Our Ti500 review sample was an eight-layer model, though.
The models and their features:
|Hercules 3D Prophet III Ti200||GeForce3 Ti200: 175 MHz64 MB, 4 ns, 400 MHzGPU FanMemory HeatsinksTV-Out (CX25871-13)||Driver-CDPowerDVD v3.0|
|Hercules 3D Prophet III Ti500||GeForce3 Ti500: 240 MHz64 MB, 3,8 ns, 500 MHzGPU FanMemory HeatsinksTV-Out (CX25871-13)||Driver-CDPowerDVD v3.0|
At first glance, the new models bear a strong likeness to the "old" 3D Prophet III: blue PCB, the same large memory heatsinks, and the blue orb chip cooler. Upon closer inspection, the changes become more apparent. Aside from the different memory speeds (3,8ns and 4ns, respectively) and the new GPUs, variations in the board layout are also evident. The Ti200 is slightly longer and uses other components for its simplified power supply. The Ti500 also sports a DVI monitor connector. Both cards use Conexant's CX25871-13 TV-Out chip, which allows a maximum TV-Out resolution of 1024x768.
Hercules proves rather stingy when it comes to software. Aside from NVIDIA's reference driver (with the Hercules logo), the software bundle only includes an overclocking tool and the software DVD player PowerDVD 3.0. Other companies are much more generous in this respect.