XFX GTX285 XXX

XFX GTX285 XXX
Rating
Overall:

Definitely worth a good, long look.

Performance :
4
Bundle:
5
Value:
4
Build:
4
Price
Price: $680
> Pricing info
Specs
670MHz core; 1250MHz memory (2500MHz effective); 1508MHz shader; GT200 core @ 55nm; 240 stream processors; 1GB GDDR3; 512-bit memory interface; dual slot PCB with active cooling; two 6-pin PCIe power connectors

XFX's latest is a Far Cry from the best, but still quite good.

The thing this card's best at, naturally, is pushing pixels from its siliconney innards to your screen. Running the 55nm revision of the GT200 core, which should prove cheaper and slightly cooler, the XXX edition means that they've whacked an overclock on the card up to 670MHz from the 648 stock. Memory is also overclocked, but it's a pretty wimpy 8MHz increase to 1250MHz. A 512-bit memory bus keeps the card humming along nicely, with a whole gigabyte of space there for all the game textures you could want - Anti aliasing benefits from this extra room quite a bit.

Inside the decidedly cool-looking packaging are all the cables that you'll need to get a display signal out of the card. There's also the usual installation manual, driver CD, and a very welcome copy of Far Cry 2. Oh and there should be a graphics card in there too, if you're lucky.

Performance of the card is pretty good in both our games, with Crysis and GRID being very playable. None of the stuttering issues were found with this card that the 4850 Matrix has. 3DMark scores were also good, though the overclock gave only a few extra points here and there.

Physically the card is just like any other reference GTX285, with a black obsidian-esque plastic shroud covering the cooling inside. The back of the PCB is left bare, while the shroud itself is adorned with an odd bull that is split between the two halves of the sticker. Inside is where the copper base mates with the core, aided by heatpipes to take the heat and spread it to the thick aluminium fins inside. The large squirrel-cage fan takes in cool air and blows it through here like a wind tunnel, transferring a lot of the heat directly out the back of the case.

There's two DVI ports, two SLI nipples, two PCIe 6-pin connectors, and the fan is controlled via a 4-pin PWM cable. NVIDIA's recent odd inclusion of the power LED on the bracket of the card is here as well, which will light up one colour if the card has both cables in, and another if it doesn't. Seems very odd to have it there, but it must make a kind of sense to someone!

Temps at idle are 47 with 56.6dBA, and load with 72 at 57dBA. The power regulation for the card makes the usual high pitched screaming noise when displaying high frames per second, especially in Crysis - this can get annoying when benching, but once inside a case shouldn't be too noticeable.

What's quite disappointing about this card is that the Inno3D card from last issue had higher clocks, included the same game and another freebie inclusion - as well as coming in at $30 less! The thing you're getting with the XFX GTX285 is the warranty and support, both of which are something that XFX do very well, however. Of course with the slight headroom afforded by the relatively cool temps, you can overclock the card even further - though killing it by pushing a little hard isn't covered.

click to view full size image

This Review appeared in the April, 2009 issue of PC & Tech Authority Magazine

See more about:  xfx  |  gtx285  |  xxx  |  video  |  card
 
 

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