On the original GeForce 9800 GTX, we were able to take the core from 675MHz all the way up to 800MHz and the memory from 1100MHz to 1200MHz with little effort. The most impressive part of the overclock though was the improvement on the shaders. We were able to overclock the shaders from 1688MHz to an impressive 2025MHz! This is what could be expected from the 65nm version of the G92 core on the GeForce 9800 GTX. The GDDR3 memory IC’s on our original GeForce 9800 GTX card were Samsung K4J52324QE-BJ08.
With the new 55nm core the default clock speeds on the core and shaders are higher, but the memory cock frequency remains the same. The question that many are wanting to know is how far can this core go with the new die shrink. It seems some are expecting the die shrink to really raise the bar! The highest settings we could get stable with the GeForce 9800 GTX+ were 855MHz on the core and 2200MHz on the shaders. That is 55MHz higher on the core and 175MHz higher on the shaders than what we could reach on the old 65nm G92 core. For those that like percentages the overclock is roughly 6% higher on the core and 8% more on the shaders, which is significant, but nothing over the top. Usually with die shrinks overclocking performance stays close to the same, even more so when no major architecture changes are made.
It should be noted that the memory overclocked better on the GeForce 9800 GTX+ and it seems NVIDIA has moved over to Hynix branded GDDR3 memory ICs. The GDDR3 memory IC’s on the new GeForce 9800 GTX+ card were Hynix H5RS5223CFR-N2C, which are rated 1200 MHz (GDDR3-2400) 0.8NS with 1.5V. These are the same memory IC’s that were found on the GeForce GTX 280 cards we reviewed last week.
The core on the GeForce 9800 GTX+ does overclock better than the original GeForce 9800 GTX cards and to top it off it has different branded GDDR3 memory that also overclocks better!