XFX nForce 780i SLI Motherboard Review

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The Test System

The test system was running Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit with all available Microsoft updates including the hotfixes required for enthusiast video cards to run correctly.  NVIDIA Forceware 169.25 drivers were used on the XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition graphics card. The XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB was run with default clock and memory settings of 678MHz/1972MHz. All of the motherboards ran the same OZC Reaper X PC2-6400 4GB memory kit at 4-4-4-12 2T timings with 2.1V.

An eVGA 680i SLI T1 motherboard was used with BIOS P31 to compare performance levels between the 680i and 780i chipsets with a dual-core processor.  The Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 was used as it is a mainstream processor that is the middle of the road when it comes to price versus performance.  To compare future processors we had to change motherboards and use the Gigabyte X38-DQ6 to compare to the 780i as the 680i SLI motherboard does not support 45nm quad-core Yorkfield processors. All three of the test systems were loaded with 4GB of memory and water cooled to ensure throttling of the processor or a memory limitation wouldn’t cause any issues.

Intel Test Platform

Component

Brand/Model

Live Pricing

Processor

Intel Core 2 QX9650 & E6750

Motherboard

see above

Memory

OCZ Reaper X PC2-6400 4GB

Video Card

XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512

Hard Drive

Western Digital SATA Raptor 150GB

Cooling

Corsair Nautilus 500

Power Supply

Corsair HX620W

Monitor

Soyo 24″ Widescreen LCD

Operating System

Windows Vista Ultimate

The Main Test System

Now that we know exactly what the test system is, we can move along to performance numbers.

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