We like to give every new
product to arrive in the lab a thorough physical inspection
before installing it into our test rig.
If you take a look at the
external plate, you will see a standard DB15 Analog VGA
connector, an S-Video out connector and the standard
composite Video-In and Video-Out connectors (ViVo).
The capabilities of the ViVo daughter-board are handled
SAA7108E chip. The TV-Out was on par with other
GeForce 3s that we have tested. We quickly captured
some video from a standard VCR with good results as well,
but keep in mind that capturing video from an analog
composite input will be only as clean as the signal coming
item that stands out is the oversized cooling hardware.
When assembled, the memory heatsinks and chipset cooler look
like they are one piece, but they are not. The main
heatsink has a 9-finned fan that sits directly over the GPU,
and the memory heatsinks are firmly mounted atop EliteMT
3.8ns DDR RAM with thermal tape. We removed the
heatsink and were VERY pleased to find an almost perfect
application of thermal paste! Finally, someone did it
right! Thank You, MSI.
|Installation / Setup Of The
Starforce 822 GeForce 3
By The Book...
Installation of the
Starforce 822 was very quick and painless. We were
starting with a clean OS install, so all we did was pop in
the card, install the drivers and we were up and running.
By now, you should
all be familiar with nVidia's reference drivers, but we
figured since the MSI Starforce 822 ships with standard
reference drivers we would give you another quick look...
Not having to use any
"proprietary" drivers will make for easy upgrades. You
won't have to wait for your manufacturer to "catch up" to
nVidia to take advantage of any extra features with the
the MSI Starforce 822 GeForce3
The card may ship
with reference drivers, but MSI includes their "3D Turbo"
utility to tweak the Starforce 822. Besides giving
users the ability to overclock their cards, the 3D Turbo
Utility allows users to tweak color settings and image
placement, among other things.
We found MSI's 3D Turbo
application to be very useful. The interface is clean
and very easy to navigate. We especially likes the
ability to run multiple "virtual desktops". If you're
like me and constantly have numerous applications open, you
may find it easier to keep organized...you can run all of
your design applications on one desktop, productivity
applications on another, etc..etc..
We used 3D Turbo to overclock
our Starforce 822 all the way up to 260MHz. core and 561MHz.
memory. This was a substantial increase in core and
memory clockspeeds, and as you'll see later this equated to
substantial performance gains, especially at higher
3D Turbo also places an icon in
you system tray giving users quick access to common
resolutions and the other sections of the program.