Introduction

Cards like the GeForce 7800 GTX and Radeon X1900 XT-X may be getting a lot of press lately, and while these cards are impressive to say the least, they don't represent what the majority of users are buying for their PC gaming systems. Gamers on a budget are always interested in advancements in the mid and lower price-range of graphics cards, and efficiency is generally more desirable to users than sheer power when looking for an upgrade. An example of this would be the popularity that we've seen of quality mid-range cards like the X800 GTO and 6800 GS, given their performance and reasonable price tags. Thankfully, NVIDIA has been continuing to make advancements on the budget side of things as well, and one such advancement is their recently released GeForce 7300 GS.

The 7300 GS is graphics card in the $100 or less price range, which offers a lot of the same features available in much more expensive parts for a fraction of the cost. This is a budget card, however, so it will see gaming performance similar to parts like NVIDIA's 6200 and ATI's X300. The 7300 GS that we have for this review is made by EVGA, a company with a good reputation for providing quality graphics hardware at competitive prices.

We've been looking at high end cards quite a bit lately, and it's easy to overlook some of the more humble graphics solutions available from ATI and NVIDIA as such powerful cards take center stage. Most PC users don't need the kind of performance that a card like the X1900 provides, and depending on the types of applications that different users are running, a far less powerful (and thus, inexpensive) card may be the wiser choice. Office computers and home theater systems might only require the most basic hardware acceleration, which is why this category of video cards exist.

Of course, for an avid gamer, a card like the 7300 GS might not cut it, but for those on a budget, this card is worth a look. Today, we take a look at EVGA's version of the 7300 GS and we will talk about the performance and features of this newest budget card from NVIDIA.

The Card
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  • coldpower27 - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    I think Anandtech dropped the ball a little on being specific on which models was tested with the cards, and exactly what clockspeed it was, you could at least have it very nicely explain on the Test Setup page, and not have us to look for it in the article for ease sake.

    I did see the clockspeed in the article itself but would prefer a list in the Test Setup page.
    Reply
  • maxstr - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    I would like to see comparison between the 7300 and the 6800. Is it an upgrade? Reply
  • coldpower27 - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link


    No. It is not, this card get beaten by the Geforce 6600, let alone the 6800 Series. IF your looking at an upgrade to the 6800 go to a 7800 so you will actually see a performance improvement.
    Reply
  • kmmatney - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    "The 7300 GS also has 3 vertex and 4 pixel pipelines, the same as the 6200, but our EVGA 7300 GS has a larger memory size of 256 MB verses 16-64 MB of the 6200TC"

    Does this mean this card has 256 MB of on-board memory, or is that the amount of system memory it can use? Please explain.
    Reply
  • coldpower27 - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    This Geforce 7300 GS Series is currently limited to 128MB or 256MB of memory, and through TC can be marketed as a 256MB or 512MB card thru TurboCache using system memory.

    The Geforce 6200 TC Series was limited to 16MB, 32MB, 64MB of actual memory and could be marketed as a 128MB or 256MB card through TruboCache using system memory.
    Reply
  • yacoub - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    I'll never understand all the talk about low to mid range cards for budget tight people and then you test it with a friggin' FX-55. lol Reply
  • coldpower27 - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    Eliminate all other variables, other then 1 single conponent so you can see the effect said 1 conponent has on performance rather then try to deduce the effect the processor has in addition to the video card. It a very logical scientific approach. Reply
  • yacoub - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    garbage and it's tiring seeing this misconception continually foisted in the article comments at this site.

    on its own, it's utterly irrelevant data to those who might actually purchase such a card. it would be useful as an ADDITION to an actual test with a modern mid-range system which would provide the MOST USEFUL numbers to folks looking at what GPU to buy to spruce up their S754 / S939 3000+-3200+ / P4 2.8GHz-3.2GHz system.

    People who already have their system and just want to upgrade the GPU need to know one thing: What GPU will help them get the most fps improvement in the games they play on THEIR system - a midrange system - before diminishing returns kicks in and the price-to-performance-gained ratio drops off (ie, buying an X1900XTX for $550 might not gain them many more fps than buying a $250 7800GT simply because their cpu is limiting them once they own a card above a 7800GT. Thus, the important thing for them to see is how each GPU performs on a midrange system playing the games they play at their resolutions (likely 1024x).

    How the card does on a cpu-unlimited system only tells part of the story and not the most important part at that.
    Reply
  • yacoub - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    to continue the point: if I have a midrange system, and i want to know which GPU to pick up to get the most out of the gpu upgrade, the data most important to me is how each GPU out there will perform in my midrange system. if, to continue the previous example, i find out that going above a 7800GT isn't going to gain me a significant improvement in fps, yet obviously the price goes up, I then know the 7800GT is the card to buy to get the most out of my current system as far as GPU is concerned.

    Clearly being a GPU review we're concerned with how the GPU performs. That's fine, but then in your conclusion you can only recommend which card is best for an FX-55 system. If the only part I want to upgrade on a mid-range system is the GPU, this article would be perfect for information for me - IF it actually used a mid-range system in the tests. Then I could see how this card fills into the ranks of GPUs out there as I seek to find the one that offers the most bang-for-the-buck (fps-for-the-dollar).

    i hope this is comprehensible for everyone. in the past some folks here simply don't get it and only care to see dick measuring contests for individual pieces of hardware and never a useful review for the consumer who would actually use a given piece of hardware.

    again, it's a nice review for what it is (a hardware dick measurement, aka no-limitations benchmark), but it's not all that helpful for folks in the real world.
    Reply
  • coldpower27 - Monday, February 20, 2006 - link

    This isn't a CPU scaling analysis to provide useful data to you to see how this GPU would effect different processor that I think can be done in another article, that would provide the useful infromation you seek. I don't think the article is garbage, the method is sound. The information your asking for would be another article entirely.


    Reply

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