XMicro Hulk V GeForce 2 MX - HotHardware

XMicro Hulk V GeForce 2 MX

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The X-Micro Hulk V GeForce 2 MX
New kid on the block...

By, Jeff Bouton
December 14, 2000

Quality and Installation Of The X-Micro Hulk V GeForce 2 MX
On with the show!

Physical inspection reveals that this card has good, clean traces and there was no excess solder to be found.  When I first looked at this card I felt that this was well crafted.   I particularly like the inclusion of both RCA and S-Video TV outputs which gives the user some flexibility when upgrading their external video devices. (TVs, VCRs...etc)

The nVidia reference design of the GeForce 2 MX doesn?t call for a heat sink or a fan of any kind, yet the good folks at X-Micro had the presence of mind to add one anyway.  On top of that, they even used thermal paste to insure good heat transfer, a very nice touch in our opinion.  All but the most hardcore overclockers should appreciate the default setup.

Even though the addition of a heat sink and fan are not required, if you're going to do something, do it right.  The heat sink and fan are secured with two flimsy plastic rivets.  This resulted in a relatively loose seal between the chip and the heat sink.  Considering that the reference design specification doesn?t even call for a heat sink, this isn?t earth shattering but maybe if it were seated more securely we might have had even better luck when overclocking.

Another nice design feature is that they made the fan a standard two prong connection rather than soldering the connections to the board.  This should prove invaluable if the fan ever needs to be replaced in the future.  However, we were a little disappointed when we tried to unplug the fan from our test card and the entire plug and base came off, leaving us with two bare prongs sticking out of the board.  This wasn?t a huge issue but we?d expect that if we tugged on the wires the plug would stay in place.

The drivers included with the card are the standard Detonator 3 6.31 reference drivers; no tweaks or  utilities were added.  We didn't take any screenshots because there was nothing new to see. :)  If you've seen one set of Detonators, you've seen them all!

If there is one thing that I must comment on though, it's the feature called Digital Vibrance.  I've seen BigWop and Davo discuss this feature in some of their earlier reviews, but I had no idea how cool it would be to see for myself.

Digital Vibrance is a lot like the color setting on your T.V.  The more that you adjust it, the more intense the colors are displayed on the screen.  Normally I consider these types of features "fluff", but in this case I think it's a great option and one that I haven't turned off yet.  In the eyes of this reviewer there is a definite quality improvement.  With the amount of time I spend surfing and working in "office type" apps any image quality improvements are very welcome!

Over-clocking and Gaming Performance

 

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