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MSI GeForce 7800 GT SLI Investigation - Page 1 of 5

INTRODUCTION

NVIDIA's SLI Technology has been one of the driving forces behind the rapid adoption of PCI-Express-based video cards. SLI-capability combined with the well performing nForce 4 motherboard chipset is a great foundation for many enthusiast systems.

Typical investigations of the SLI technology have been performed on the fastest systems one can assemble. As such, with AMD leading Intel in the game performance arena, the vast majority of the investigations into the SLI technology and its impact on performance have been analyzed on the AMD platform and done so with the most powerful variants of GeForce video cards.

To switch things up a bit, we will examine SLI on the Intel platform with MSIís P4N Diamond motherboard paired up with a couple of NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GTís, one of which is a reference model and the other an MSI NX7800GT-VT2D256E. While we have performed in-depth reviews of both of the MSI products and the reference model of the NVIDIA 7800 GT individually with various configurations, this article will examine the SLI functionality as an upgrade possibility to extend the life of the current card one may own.

MSI NX7800GT-VT2D256E

MSI P4N Diamond Motherboard

And without further adieu, letís jump into the test system specs and the benchmarks.

TESTING CONFIGURATION

System Specifications

  • Intel Pentium 4 560 (3.6GHz) Processor
  • MSI P4N Diamond Motherboard
  • Mushkin 2GB (1GBx2) XP2 Memory
  • PC Power & Cooling Turbo-Cool 510W ATX-PFC Power Supply
  • Seagate 250GB SATA HDD
  • MSI NX7800GT-VT2D256E Graphics Card
  • NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GT Graphics Card
  • Samsung SyncMaster 900NF - 19-Inch Monitor
  • 32-Bit Color / Vsync Disabled
  • NVIDIA ForceWare 82.12 Drivers at Quality Image Setting
  • nForce 4 SLI Intel Edition 7.12
  • Windows XP Home Service Pack 2 / DirectX 9.0c

BIOS Settings

  • Memory Timing - 4-4-4-12
  • 800 MHz Memory Speed
  • 800 MHZ Front Side Bus

Games Tested

  • FarCry - v1.33)
  • F.E.A.R. - v1.02
  • Half-Life 2: Lost Coast

The results displays are an average of three separate runs of the same demo. Anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering were applied by utilizing the in-game menus.

Every image enhancing feature of the games tested was enabled, except in F.E.A.R. where soft shadows were disabled throughout most of the testing due to the extremely adverse effect on performance. However, soft shadows are enabled where the feature's impact on performane is examined.

Next Page: FarCry Testing

Last Updated on March 24, 2006


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