MSI NX7800 GTX x 2: Retail SLI - HotHardware

MSI NX7800 GTX x 2: Retail SLI

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It's been less than two months since NVIDIA initially announced the availability of their new GeForce 7800 GTX, and already we ourselves in the enviable position of showcasing a third retail-ready version of NVIDIA's flagship card. We've previously showcased BFG's Editor's Choice Winning GeForce 7800 GTX OC and EVGA's e-GeForce 7800 GTX EGS, but this time around we have MSI's NX7800GTX in the HotHardware labs. Due to the fact that they are all based on NVIDIA's reference design, the MSI NX7800GTX is similar to BFG's and EVGA's products in many respects, but they differ in clock speed and perhaps more importantly in price. Read on and see what MSI has done with NVIDIA's latest top-of-the-line gaming GPU...

   
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MSI NX7800GTX Specifications
MSI's Take On the GTX
NVIDIA CineFX 4.0 Shading Architecture
_Vertex Shaders
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_Support for Microsoft DirectX 9.0 Vertex Shader 3.0
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_Displacement mapping
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_Geometry instancing
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_Infinite length vertex programs
_Pixel Shaders
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_Support for DirectX 9.0 Pixel Shader 3.0
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_Full pixel branching support
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_Support for Multiple Render Targets (MRTs)
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_Infinite length pixel programs
_Next-Generation Texture Engine
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_Accelerated texture access
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_Up to 16 textures per rendering pass
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_Support for 16-bit floating point format and 32-bit floating point format
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_Support for non-power of two textures
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_Support for sRGB texture format for gamma textures
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_DirectX and S3TC texture compression

_Full 128-bit studio-quality floating point precision through the entire rendering pipeline with native hardware support for 32bpp, 64bpp, and 128bpp rendering modes


API Support
• Complete DirectX support, including the latest version of Microsoft DirectX 9.0 Shader Model 3.0
_Full OpenGL support, including OpenGL 2.0


64-Bit Texture Filtering and Blending
_Full floating point support throughout entire pipeline
_Floating point filtering improves the quality of images in motion
_Floating point texturing drives new levels of clarity and image detail
_Floating point frame buffer blending gives detail to special effects like motion blur and explosions


NVIDIA Intellisample 4.0 Technology
_Advanced 16x anisotropic filtering (with up to 128 Taps)
_Blistering- fast antialiasing and compression performance
_Gamma-adjusted rotated-grid antialiasing removes jagged edges for incredible image quality
_Transparent multisampling and transparent supersampling modes boost antialiasing quality to new levels
_Support for normal map compression
_Support for advanced lossless compression algorithms for color, texture, and z-data at even higher resolutions and frame rates
_Fast z-clear


NVIDIA UltraShadow II Technology
_Designed to enhance the performance of shadow-intensive games
NVIDIA Digital Vibrance Control (DVC) 3.0 Technology
_DVC color controls
_DVC image sharpening controls


NVIDIA SLI Technology
_Patented hardware and software technology allows two GPUs to run in parallel to scale performance
_Scales performance on over 60 top PC games and applications


NVIDIA PureVideo Technology
_Adaptable programmable video processor
_High-definition MPEG-2 and WMV9 hardware acceleration
_Spatial-temporal de-interlacing
_Inverse 2:2 and 3:2 pull-down (Inverse Telecine)
_4-tap horizontal, 5-tap vertical scaling
_Overlay color temperature correction
_Microsoft Video Mixing Renderer (VMR) supports multiple video windows with full video quality and features in each window
_Integrated HDTV output


Composited Desktop Hardware Engine
_Video post-processing
_Real-time desktop compositing
_Accelerated antialiased text rendering
_Pixel shader-driven special effects and animation


Advanced Display Functionality
_Dual integrated 400MHz RAMDACs for display resolutions up to and including
2048x1536 at 85Hz
_Dual DVO ports for interfacing to external TMDS transmitters and external TV encoders
_Full NVIDIA nView multi-display technology capability


Advanced Engineering
_Designed for PCI Express x16
_Designed for high-speed GDDR3 memory


Operating Systems
_Windows XP/Windows XP 64
_Windows ME
_Windows 2000
_Linux
_Macintosh OS X

         

In the past, MSI had been known for including an exorbitant amount of extras with their high-end video cards. Just take a look at their 5950's accessory bundle (article here), and you'll see what we mean. We wouldn't categorize the NX7800GTX's bundle as exorbitant, but MSI did a good job nonetheless. Included with the NX7800GTX were two manuals, a quick installation guide and a user's manual, a registration reminder, and the requisite driver CD. The drivers included on the disc are a modified version of NVIDIA's reference drivers, with a built-in auto overclocking feature dubbed "D.O.T", for Dynamic Overclocking Technology. MSI also included a few other utilities on the CD - GoodMem, LockBox, and WMIinfor. GoodMem can be used to free unused memory, LockBox is a basic file encryption tool, and WMIinfor is a simple system information monitor. MSI also went a step further on the software bundle and included a copy of the very good game, the Chronicles of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay.

On the hardware front, the NX7800GTX comes bundled with a pair of DVI-to-DB15 monitor adapters, a pair of S-Video cables, and a dongle with assorted S-Video and component inputs and outputs. The NX7800GTX has ViVo (Video In / Video Out) capabilities, and the dongle is necessary to connect various devices to the cards inputs and outputs.

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