Leadtek GeForce 3 Ti500 TD - HotHardware

Leadtek GeForce 3 Ti500 TD

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The Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 TD...
Yes, There is a Video Card Under all that Metal!

By, Marco Chiappetta
November 15, 2001

THE CARD:

Every product that enters the HotHardware labs gets a thorough physical inspection before it is installed into one of our test rigs...

           

The "TD" version on the Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 is equipped with TV-Out as well as a DVI connector (hence the TD).  There is also a "TDH" version of the card that adds hardware monitoring capabilities.  The TV-Out on the Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 TD is a cut above most other cards thanks to the Conexant CX25871 TV encoder.  The CX25871 is capable of outputting to a television at a resolution of 1024x768, while the majority of competing products only output up to 800x600.  Score 1 for Leadtek...

           

The oversized cooling solution is just begging to be talked about.  There are quite a few things that need to be mentioned.  First, notice that the fan sits in the center of the large heatsink, not directly over the GPU.  The fan is just slightly raised, allowing the blades to blow air directly at the center of the GPU and out across the memory.  The heatsink is held in place with two plastic spring clips, and has a lip that curves over the top of the PCB.  Normally we would remove the cooler included on a video board to check what type of thermal interface material is being used, but we didn't have to with the WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500.  Why? You ask...Well, if you look closely at the last picture, you can see the thermal paste applied to memory!  This is the first GeForce 3 that we have seen that exclusively uses thermal paste for both the memory and GPU.  We were very happy to see Leadtek took this extra step to insure their cooling solution would work more efficiently.

Installation / Setup Of The Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 TD
Piece of cake...

 

Installing the Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 is just like any other plug-and-play video card.  Insert the card into your AGP slot, install the drivers and you're up and running...

 

 

You'll be sure your card is working properly when you see the initial boot-up splash screen going through it's self check and counting off the memory.

 

THE DRIVERS:

 

The drivers included on the CD-ROM were version 21.81 of NVIDIA's standard reference drivers.

 

    

 

We have posted screenshots of these drivers multiple times, so we won't bore you with them again.  We did encounter one problem with the included drivers we must mention though.  Anytime we tried to access the Device Selection or Color Correction tabs, we received the above error.  We won't hold too much against Leadtek for this bug though, once we updated the drivers to the version 21.85s we used for testing, the problem went away.

 

Overclocking with the Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 TD
Not what we hoped...

 

The WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 TD is bundled with Leadtek's "WinFox" suite.  WinFox consists of quite a few utilities that allow you to tweak man aspects of the card from gamma correction to overclocking.

 

 

The Overclocking portion of the suite is called "Speed Runner".  Speed runner is a very simple tool that give you the ability to adjust core and memory clockspeeds with a simple slider.

 

 

By default, the Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 Ti500 TD is clocked at 240MHz. core and 500MHz. (DDR) memory...just like every other Ti500.  We spent some time overclocking our card and were able to hit maximum speeds of 266MHz. / 571MHz.  These are some very high numbers, but we have to admit we were expecting more.  We've seen standard GeForce 3s hit speeds almost as high as this.  With the enhanced cooling found on the Leadtek card, we assumed we'd see speeds a bit higher.

 

It's MadOnion Time!

 

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