XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB XXX Edition Video Card

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A Closer Look At The 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog

XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition Video Card

After removing the screws holding on the heat sink and fan, the ‘guts’ of the GeForce 8800 GTS 512 can be seen.  Even though the GeForce 8800 GTS 512 has more transistors than the original GeForce 8800 GTS 320/640 (754 million versus 681 million), it requires just a single 6-pin PCI Express power header like the GeForce 8800 GTS.  This is due to the fact that NVIDIA has built the G92 core on the 65nm process whereas the originalGeForce 8800 series were all built on the 90nm process.  The result of the die shrink means that the G92 based cards have lower power consumption even though it has more stream processors, faster core/memory/shader clock frequencies and more transistors.

XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition Video Card

With the thermal paste cleared off the 678MHz G92 core, we can see what powers this beast.  The core on the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB is labeled G92-400-A2, which is different than the core on the GeForce 8800 GT series as they are labled G92-270-A2.  Since cores have a different number of stream processors it is likely they are different, but from the outside they look identical.  

XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition Video Card

The XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB graphics card that we are looking at today has Qimonda memory ICs. The Qimonda HYB18H512321BF-10 memory ICs are 512-Mbit GDDR3 Graphics RAM that are designed to run at 1.0GHz according to their datasheet. Each IC therefore contains 64MB of memory and eight of them add up to the 512MB that is found on the XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB graphics card. These are the same exact memory ICs that the XFX GeForce 8800 GT 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition graphics card is using, but have a later build date.  These were manufactured on the 38th week of 2007 and the ones on the GeForce 8800 GT 512MB were built on week 20 of 2007!

The memory bus has been reduced to 256-bit like the GeForce 8800GT. The original GeForce 8800GTS 320/640 had a 320-bit bus, so the width of the memory bus has been reduced. The memory bandwidth on the new cards is 62.1GBps, but since the XFX card is overclocked it’s 63.1GBps. The old overclocked BFG Tech GeForce 8800 GTS 640MB OC2 was 68GBps, so the memory bandwidth has actually gone down a little bit. Keep in mind that the texture fill rate has gone from 27.8 billion per second to over 41.6 billion though, so while the memory interface and bandwidth has decreased, the increased number of stream processors, higher texture fill rate and newer PCI Express 2.0 interface should more than make up for it on the performance front. If you are getting confused by all of these check out the table below that shows the reference speeds for the latest and greatest cards.  

Model NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS 320/640MB NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTX 768MB ATI Radeon HD 3870 512MB
Core Code G92 G92 G80 G80 RV670
Transistor Count 754 million 754 million 681 million 681 million 666 million
Manufacturing Process 65nm 65nm 90nm 90nm 55nm
Core Clock 650MHz 600MHz 500MHz 575MHz 775MHz
Stream Processors 128 Stream Processors 112 Stream Processors 96 Stream Processors 128 Stream Processors 64 Shader Processors (consisting of 320 Stream Processing Units)
Stream Processor Clock 1625MHz 1500MHz 1200MHz 1350MHz 775MHz
Texture Mapping Units (TMU) or Texture Filtering (TF) units 64 56 48 64 16
Raster Operator units (ROP) 24 16 16 24 16
Memory Clock 1940MHz DDR3 1800MHz DDR3 1600MHz DDR3 1800MHz DDR3 2250MHz DDR4
DDR Memory Bus 256-bit 256-bit 320-bit 384-bit 256-bit
Memory Bandwidth 62.0GB/s 57.6GB/s 64.0GB/s 86.4GB/s 72.0GB/s
Ring Bus Memory Controller N/A N/A N/A N/A 512-bit
PCI Express Interface PCIe ver 2.0 x16 PCIe ver 2.0 x16 x16 x16 PCIe ver 2.0 x16
Molex Power Connectors Yes Yes Yes Yes (dual) Yes
Multi GPU Technology Yes (SLI) Yes (SLI) Yes (SLI) Yes (SLI) Yes (CrossFireX)
DVI Output Support 2 x Dual-Link 2 x Dual-Link 2 x Dual-Link 2 x Dual-Link 2 x Dual-Link
HDCP Support Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Street Price US$299 – 349 ~ US$269 – 319 ~US$289 – 449 ~ US$449 – 529 From US$249 – 279

The layout of the GeForce 8800 GTS 512 isn’t too different from the GeForce 8800 GT 512 as the only significant difference is in the power management of the card.

XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition Video Card

Enough talk about the details!  Lets take a look at the test system and then the benchmarks to see how it performs.

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