I'd like to preface this review by stating its primary goal which is to
inform you, as a consumer, with as much relevant information as possible.
Hopefully, after reading this review you'll have learned a few things that will
help you to make a more informed purchasing decision. With that said, I should
add that the target audience for this review is to the majority of you. Exactly
what defines the "majority of you" is not going to be perfect but I'll do the
best I can based on my gut feeling from your e-mails, reading nV News forum
Realizing the fact that this card is targeted for a niche market, all
benchmarking was done at overclocked settings of 320/700. I opted not to include
default clock settings to keep this review tidier and also because most of you
have a good idea of default settings already.
If there's one thing a review of today's Gainward video cards must include,
it's the obligatory clarification of their product naming conventions. I won't
pretend to know anything about marketing or branding so I'll just give you the
facts for those of you that aren't quite clear on this subject. If you're
already intimately familiar with all of this then feel free to jump here.
The official name of this card is: Gainward GeForce4 PowerPack! Ultra/750-8X XP
Golden Sample. Note that I stress the -8X portion of the name as this is the
only naming convention difference between this card and the Ti4600 version which
is Gainward GeForce4 PowerPack! Ultra/750 XP Golden Sample (without the -8X).
The rest of the Gainward product line follows a similar naming pattern, all
begin with Gainward GeForce4 PowerPack! The differences then appear in the
designation as "Ultra" or "Pro" with "Ultra" referring to GF4-class cards while
"Pro" refers to GF4MX-class cards. Next comes the number (750) in this case
which refers to what "Ti" flavor the card is. A "750" refers to a Ti4800 while a
"650" refers to a Ti4200.
Now, some further clarification should be made about the "Ti4800" and "Ti4800SE"
naming that nVidia came up with. Both are actually just Ti4600 and Ti4400 cards,
respectively, with only the addition of AGP-8X support. Yes, the Ti4800SE is
actually a Ti4400 and not a Ti4600 like most would assume. nVidia also deemed it
necessary to name the chipset "NV28" which is what all of these cards are built
on and is essentially the NV25 with AGP-8X support.
RETAIL AND OEM DIFFERENCES
Furthermore, (yes there's a bit more) there are a few small--but important--details about the Gainward
GeForce4 PowerPack! Ultra/750-8X XP Golden Sample that all the reviews I've read to date have neglected to
mention. This little nugget of information is that of the difference between the retail and OEM (whitebox)
products. From a product naming standpoint there is no difference (with the only exception being the bar
code), both are named exactly the same: Gainward GeForce4 PowerPack! Ultra/750-8X XP Golden Sample.
However, there is a difference with:
default core clock
bandwidth (result of two items above)
Check out the charts below for examples of these variances straight from the Gainward Product Guide: February/March 2003, Release 5.1.
Note that the bar code 4448 is the retail (faster) version and 4363 is the OEM (slower) version.