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  • DaveatBigfoot - Thursday, November 30, 2006 - link

    Dave from Bigfoot Networks here. We wanted to reach out to comments and forums around the Internet, address some of the issues being discussed, and be available for any questions you may have.

    I worked with Gary while he was writing this review. We have a tremendous amount of respect for him and Anandtech.com. I'd be liar if I didn't admit that we were disappointed with the performance and experience that the Anandtech review reflects. We welcomed the "Pepsi Challenge", and appreciated the real-world approach taken.

    While the performance numbers reported were lower than what our customers report, and what we see internally, we thought one of the best testimonials for the Killer was the blind test where a the Killer was added to gamers PC without his knowledge, and he thought there was a new video card or more RAM in the system. Truly, that is what the Killer is all about...smoother, faster gaming...less lag, better performance.

    Back when this review was written, we did have some issues with our drivers. I believe each and every issue manifested itself during Anandtech's testing. It was very unfortunate and not anticipated. Bypassing the windows network stack and putting a Linux computer on a PCI slot is a bit tricky. We aren't using that as an excuse, just stating it as a fact. Our latest software suite addresses all the issues that are referenced in this review.

    We have also recently released IPtables firewall for the Killer NIC. Many more FNApps are on the way, and with time the Killer's value will increase. A rarity in the hardware world.

    We sincerely hope, at some point, Anandtech will give the Killer another shot. We firmly stand by our product and believe it holds tremendous value for online gamers.

    I am also happy to answer any questions you may have about the Killer, so fire away!
    Reply
  • lwright84 - Thursday, November 09, 2006 - link

    http://hardware.gotfrag.com/portal/story/34683/">http://hardware.gotfrag.com/portal/story/34683/

    explains some of the features and shows some better results with this card.
    Reply
  • goinginstyle - Wednesday, November 29, 2006 - link

    They only tested two games and both were optimized for the KillerNIC. They give it an editors award for improving FEAR by 6.7%, come on. Reply
  • trajik78 - Sunday, November 05, 2006 - link

    did i mention $300 is f'in crazy for a NIC? Reply
  • cotak - Sunday, November 05, 2006 - link

    This is as useful as something that makes guys quicker during sex.

    As for people talking about this being enterprise storage technology. They use fiber for that with expensive fiber switches not Ethernet and not something you'd be able to afford at home.

    What's the point of reviewing something like this. In the first part of the review they say "the internet is variable". That's your key right there. There's no point in speeding up your connection to your cable/dsl modem when everything else from here to whatever is unknown. 300 bucks on a card like this and connecting it to your typical linksys router with the new VxWorks firmware with limited number of NAT connections it's about as dumb putting huge spoilers on a shitty car.
    Reply
  • trajik78 - Sunday, November 05, 2006 - link

    yup, pretty much every review has confirmed that this product is more than not-worthy of the $300 that could be better used for say a couple kegs of beer, or towards college tuition.

    when it comes down to it, your built in MB ethernet interface is more than worthy of your use for any circumstance, even it be HUGE FRAGFEST AT YOUR FRIENDS LAN PARTY!!
    Reply
  • aswinp - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    Check out this site for more info on TNICS:

    In my (small) experience in enterprise storage solutions, I believe one of the main reason for using TOE NICS is for iSCSI (SCSI over IP) SAN applications, instead of using Fiber Channel or other SAN solutions. So you basically have a SAN whose fabric is not based on expensive Fiber Channel hardware but on regular Ethernet.

    Top 10 Reasons to upgrade to a TNIC:
    http://www.alacritech.com/html/toe_top_ten.shtml">http://www.alacritech.com/html/toe_top_ten.shtml

    Benchmark Reports:
    http://www.alacritech.com/html/benchmark_reports.s...">http://www.alacritech.com/html/benchmark_reports.s...
    Reply
  • mlau - Thursday, November 02, 2006 - link

    I strongly suggest you read this mail and the paper it links to:
    http://www.cs.helsinki.fi/linux/linux-kernel/2003-...">http://www.cs.helsinki.fi/linux/linux-kernel/2003-...

    TOE is another marketing fad, nothing more.
    Reply
  • aswinp - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    I guess Killer NIC saw this technology starting to rise in popularity in the enterprise storage market and thought... "Hey, what happens if we apply this thing to gaming?". And so you get the Killer NIC.

    Although I admit the FNA feature is very interesting, if ever any software ever gets written to take advantage of it.

    What I'd really like to see is what happens when the Killer NIC is put in comparison to true TOE NICS in IP SAN applications. Coz its less expensive than these guys.
    Reply
  • soydeedo - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    hey guys. there have been scores of complaints regarding lag and such when running the new titan mode in battlefield 2142. if the titan [a very large airship] is moving while many players are aboard it things can get a bit hairy. i've experienced this myself although not very often, but it's pretty aggravating and severely impacts playability. i'm requesting that you play a couple rounds with a moving titan [it's imperative that it's moving] and report back your results with this killernic. i've made a post about this on firingsquad and totalbf2142 to no avail so if you guys would test this out i [and potentially many others if it offers any benefits] would appreciate it. thanks. =) Reply
  • Gary Key - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    We have been trying to develop a benchmark for BF2142 and our issues always revolve around the Titan when it is full. ;-) I tried BF2142 right before we ended testing with the Killer NIC and could not tell any difference with it. However, I did not benchmark while we were trying to develop a benchmark. If I get a chance I will go back and try it with the new drivers. Reply
  • soydeedo - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    cool beans. thanks for that quick first impression. i was just curious if it could somehow benefit from the packet optimization etc. anywho, keep us posted should you find something noteworthy with the new drivers. =) Reply
  • goinginstyle - Wednesday, November 29, 2006 - link

    Any update on BF2142? Reply
  • Nehemoth - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Now i just need that anandtech review this
    http://www.hfield.com/wifire.htm">http://www.hfield.com/wifire.htm
    Reply
  • yyrkoon - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    Looks like a flat panel, and you'd do better with a 21-23DB gain Andrew, trust me, I've had the last two years to play with both since we've been wireless internet for about that long. We have just now switched (tonight, just got he hardware) to AT&T 'Wi-Max', and it is much much better than our previous provider using 802.11/G. Get this, it doesnt even need a dirrectional, just set it next to a window (such is true in our case), and you're getting an instant 2.52Mbit from a tower 8 miles away.

    It's pretty dahmed cool, and I didnt believe it myself, until I hooked up a neibors system for him, and he's got it in a window that sits on the opposite side of his house from the tower. Although, from the little technical information the tech support team was able to provide me with, it's only availible in our town, and only if you cant get DSL, supposedly, this is some sort of trial service for them, to determine whether its feasable to setup in other areas *shrug*. Nothing like downloading at 200 KB/s +, seen it swing as high as 800+ KB/s
    Reply
  • feelingshorter - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Buddy, that thing is realistic. Dont tell me you never herd of a directional antenna?!?!? Thats all it is. No its not overpriced because good antennas cost a lot and it does stop your internet from dropping. Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Only problem is it's completely impractical for laptops where you move around a lot. For desktops, if you want a consistent quality connection, just run the damn wire and be done with it. The fastest wireless 802.11 stuff can't even come close to 100 Mbit for typical use, let alone gigabit! Reply
  • yyrkoon - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I have to admit, I'm a bit disappointed in you fellas, for not even benching the in-expensive Intel PCI-E NIC http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtool...">Intel Pro 1000 PCI-E
    , Or atleast comparring the two. For $40 USD, this card should perform very close, if not better than the $300usd 'snake oil' NIC.

    *sigh*
    Reply
  • Gary Key - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    We tested the Intel PRO/1000 PT and the Koutech PEN120 PCI-Express Gigabit adapters. Both adapters scored slightly less than the NIVIDIA NIC across the board in our tests so we did not show the results. Both cards support Linux so that is a plus but then again we were reviewing a NIC designed for Windows based gaming. Reply
  • yyrkoon - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    Hmm, guess i missed that review, however, the last review on saw on the Intel PCI, and Onboard Intel solutions (a year or so ago from *ahem* THW, showed both those leading the pack, of course, I guess the killer NIC wasnt availible at that time . . . Reply
  • Gary Key - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    We tested these two cards as part of our Killer NIC testing routine. We did not report the numbers as they did not vary greatly from the NIVIDA 590SLI NIC solution. Reply
  • Crassus - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    Sorry, but that plus the server test would have been very useful information I would have liked in the review. Or maybe we can have a different review, sort of a "NIC roundup". If your results are the same across the board, it's a finding worth mentioning as well, isn't it? Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I bet it doesn't even beat the onboard NVIDIA NIC. Or rather, it will tie the NVIDIA solution, which means it's equal to the Killer in most situations and fractionally slower in a few games. Maybe it has lower CPU usage when doing gigabit transmits, but high bandwidth with low CPU usage isn't going to matter much for gaming. Not that any NIC related stuff matters much for gaming these days. Reply
  • vaystrem - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I agree its very difficult to test NIC performance and kudos to Anandtech for trying. But, it seems to me that using the card as a server for the games where it saw the most improvement, Fear/CS, and even for those that it didn't may be more enlightening than exploring the client side of things. Reply
  • Gary Key - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    We set up one of our test beds as a server for a couple of the games we tested. The performance was actually worse than our NVIDIA NIC (dualnet/teaming), Intel PRO/1000 PT, and barely did better than our D-Link PCI NIC in half of the tests. We will not fault the card for its peformance since it was specifically designed as a client side card. This very well could change in the future due to their ability to optimize driver code on the FPGA unit. The article could have gone another five pages with the server and LAN tests that we completed (neither showed any significant differences). It appears from several of the comments that anything over three pages was a waste anyway. ;-) Reply
  • EODetroit - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Except according to the PR material the card is made for game clients, not optimized for game servers. Reply
  • VooDooAddict - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    While the POSIBILITY of embeded linux apps is interesting. For someone who would have the $$ do buy this ... they would have the money to put inexpensive PC parts together into a linux machine. Likely they have spare parts leftover from thier last upgrade.

    Anyone else think the company name is strangly fitting? "BigFoot" ... Myth and Hype?

    Certainly not saying a nice NIC isnt'a good investment ... but at almost $300 ... it's a joke. Drop the embedded linux, hit the $50 price point and this thing would probably sell like mad to WoW Addicts. (eventually also have a PCIe version)

    The aegia(sp?) physics processor is the same way. Great concept, but the tangable benefits are so minimal for the price. $300 Video cards took off because there was a tangable benefit.

    Dropping anothre $300 into the Storage System, Monitor, CPU, Video card, RAM, or even Audio system (surround speakers) would give one a much mroe imersive experience.

    Someone made the wrong decission to stick with the embedded linux thing. Seriously a sperate leftover parts Linux box and a DLINK 4100 router would be a far better way to go.

    So any guesses as to the next $300 (*caugh* gimic *caugh*) expendature to "improve" gaming?

    For those comparing this to SLI/Crossfire. SLI and Crossfire can offer substantial image quality enhancements for people with large pixel count LCDs. The ability to run LCDs at native resolution for gaming is a very tangable benefit. Not something everyone agrees it worth the $$. But the benefit is there.
    Reply
  • VooDooAddict - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I was really hoping for somethign major from this card ... just from the perspective of reliving history.

    Around 10 years ago now (back around '96-'97) when NICs weren't build onboard spending $60-$70 on a 3Com 3c905 or a server class Intel NIC would make a bug differance in overall system performace when working with the Internet, LAN, and Gaming. They gave me big advantages over anyone who just went out an bought a cheapo $20 NE2000 comptable NIC (16-bit ISA even!).

    I'm talking Quake 1, Duke3D, Quake 2, Quake CTF, Original Unreal... A single 3dFx VooDooGraphics Board + 3c905 = pwnage (back when "pwnage" was still a typo). I was so often accused of cheating by laptop wielding, software emulating, newbies (wasn't spelt "noob" then).

    ... That above is why I picked up the handle "VooDooAddict"
    Reply
  • EODetroit - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    And they deleted it. Claiming it needed to be moved from "Testimonials" to "General" forum. Whatever, but they didn't actually move my post, they deleted it and replaced it with a post of their own, with the link, plus quoted all the good things said in the Anandtech review and none of the bad. Typical and misleading, but hey, its their web site. They can do what they want. Still, misleading people doesn't endear them to anyone.
    Reply
  • LoneWolf15 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I admire the amount of engineering that went into this product. It's obvious that the product isn't "snake oil" in the same way that, say, SoftRAM software was back in the day. There's a lot more to this card than just a NIC.

    That said, I don't think it provides enough benefit to justify $279 (unless perhaps you're making $50k+ a year in the PGL). Today's NICs are already pretty well optimized for most situations, plus many mainboard NICS are directly on the PCIe bus, something the Killer NIC can't offer (and as someone pointed out, try doing gig ethernet across a PCI slot; it really isn't feasible, especially if you already have the PCI bus shared with other components like a TV tuner or sound card). The Killer NIC's most interesting feature, FNApps, is not useful at the moment, and I'm still concerned that it might pose a security risk through a malformed application (that's assuming someone coded that app in the first place, considering how little marketshare the Killer NIC is likely to have). Like the Ageia PhysX, at this point in time, I don't see the justification.

    P.S. Is it just me, or does the heatsink "K" look like a Klingon weapon? I'm thinking either Klingon brass-knuckles or a hybrid bat-lef. ;)

    Reply
  • LoneWolf15 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Almost forgot my one other point: As others have said, Vista's TCP stack is completely different. If the Killer NIC is designed largely around the way previous versions of Windows work, even with Vista drivers it could turn out to be a high-priced piece of hardware that functions no better than a regular PCI nic. Reply
  • TonyB - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Instead of paying $300 to improve your World of Warcraft PIng Times you can simply do a little research. find out which WoW server is located in your geographic zone. If you live in California, look for a West coast server, if you're in New York, look for a East coast server , if you're in Chicago look for a Central server. Pay the $25 character transfer fee and move your account to the new server, viola!! decreased ping times.

    ps: this only works if you aren't playing in a server thats in your geographic zone already.
    Reply
  • VooDooAddict - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Because to you... Free = $25 transfer fee and no longer playing with the same group of friends?? Not an option for most people.

    I aplaud BigFoot for targeting this need with thier product. Riding the coat tails of something like WoW is a tried and true buisness practice. However, it's a failed execution and from the looks of it due mainly to the price. Everyone else agree that if priced for $49 or less they could start enjoying part of that big pile of money called WoW?

    $49 for a card that could help keep things running smoothly in large raids with teamspeak running full tilt? They could drop the giant K and the embedded linux to help reduce costs as 95% of the WoW target wouldn't care about those features.
    Reply
  • Spacecomber - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I'll try not to repeat what has already been said about this NIC and Anandtech's review of it; I did have a few random thoughts after skimming through the article.

    I felt like I had to give BigFoot credit for apprarently seeking out this review from Anandtech. Although they had a lot to gain from a good review, because of the extent of Anandtech's readership and reputation, they must have known that their card would have to deliver on what was advertised in order to get any sort of positive grade (and in the end it did fail to deliver on all but a insignificant fraction of what it promised).

    On the other hand, this gets us to the meat of the article. Besides the issue of price, the main problem with this card is that it just isn't ready for prime-time, yet. This means that anyone who does spend $280 on this card is essentially signing up as a beta tester for a product this is still in development. Although gamers probably are familiar with this role (being the first to own some new hardware or new game means being the first to encounter unresolved and frustrating bugs), it still seems a bit perverse to have to pay so much money for this dubious honor.

    Given that this seems to be current state of affairs with "cutting edge" games and hardware, I couldn't help imaginging how it would make more sense to put the (presumably) free products into the hands of users who know that they are expected to beta test and work with tech/support staff to make a potentially good product better, rather than the apparent current practice of putting new products into the hands of people who are only required to evangelize for the company.

    I guess somewhere along the way the marketing people won out, and comapnies now find their money better spent on marketing rather than product development. Personally, I can't believe that viral marketing is going to be more helpful at making this product a success than would money spent on further testing and development.


    Essentially, this is what BigFoot got by their providing a card to Anandtech for testing (constructive feedback and a willing partner to test out potential fixes - in the form of new drivers). But, I suppose BigFoot has bills to pay, now, before they can even worry about getting this card fully up to specification, and this means that someone has to pay.
    Reply
  • WileCoyote - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Review was too wordy! Just large paragraphs of text without any type of organization. Dullest Anandtech article ever. Reply
  • goinginstyle - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    quote:

    Review was too wordy! Just large paragraphs of text without any type of organization. Dullest Anandtech article ever.


    Dullest response ever and it did not take a PhD to write my response. The article flowed from an introduction, with understandable technology descriptions that were not in other reviews, to results with a subjective/objective based ending. It had a couple of wordy sections but it was a lot better than most of the one line sentence descriptions you see in articles today. So please go buy a card, test it, and then provide us your perfect review. If you are unwilling to do this then at least tell us how it should be organized so anthropologists from around the world can understand it. I am sure Eric R. Wolf is turning over in his grave today because an anthropologist did not like the organization of an article.
    Reply
  • WileCoyote - Thursday, November 02, 2006 - link

    Chill out! Don't get so stressed out over 3 sentences and someone else's opinion. Big deal, I think it's a poorly written article when compared to previous ones at Anandtech. And I'm not questioning the author's education or net worth. I have left dozens of positive comments for previous Anandtech articles/authors so I'm not trolling either.

    Reply
  • goinginstyle - Thursday, November 02, 2006 - link

    quote:

    Chill out! Don't get so stressed out over 3 sentences and someone else's opinion.


    The fact is you have not offered an opinion on how to improve the article. You bash it but have not replied as to how you would have written it. If you think it is poorly written and have no issue critizing the author then at least leave a few comments on how you would have changed it. He at least asked for your opinion and others on how to improve the article. If you cannot respond in a professional manner to that request then you are trolling. Tell us how you would have organized the article? Better yet, test the card, and post your own review. You could simply take the time and email Gary with your revisions. He has already edited the article and the sections I thought were a little wordy are gone. Of course I emailed him and relayed my thoughts about the subject instead of dropping a one line dump in the forums.
    Reply
  • WileCoyote - Friday, November 03, 2006 - link

    Based on your replies I have learned the following:
    1. If you think an article is poorly written, buy the item and review it yourself.
    2. If you do not write in a "professional manner" do not write anything at all. Ha!
    3. If you say an article is "too wordy" people will not understand that the solution is to write less words.
    4. Talking with people here is a big waste of time. They think they are always right and smarter than you.
    The article was boring to me and I dropped a note to say that. I'm sorry for any hurt feelings as a result. If you know me better than I do and want to argue that the article was not boring to me, then feel free. Everything else you have said has nothing to do with what I originally said. I don't know, maybe you had a bad day at work and need to take it out here? Or maybe you want to aim at the easiest target in a thread... say, mine? Go find something challenging and worth spending time on. Unless this is the only way you feel smart? By the way, this post was too wordy. Boring even...yawn.
    Reply
  • goinginstyle - Wednesday, November 29, 2006 - link

    You must work in a really small cube. Yawn...... Reply
  • WileCoyote - Friday, November 03, 2006 - link

    I said it's too wordy. That means take out words. Are you people for real? Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    That post was too short. Three sentences with no real support to back it up. Lamest comment ever.

    Look, sorry you have poor reading skillz, but a lot of us are quite educated and like to know the WHY and HOW besides just the WHAT. My first thought was "how in the hell is this product supposed to do ANYTHING for frame rates!?" Gary answered that by looking into the details more than superficially. Oh, sure, it doesn't really deliver -- a 5% increase on a moderately high-end system is pretty silly for a $270 product -- but that it can affect frame rates at all is surprising to me. I now have hope for Windows Vista, at least on the networking stack side of things.

    What's really odd is that the review is pretty clearly advising people to NOT go out and buy this "killer" product, because it just isn't that great. If I saw a review on AnandTech that bashed a product without any backing material, I'd feel I was reading something at HardOCP. Well, okay, they back up their complaints sometimes, but their testing methodology is worse than suspect. Remember the Core 2 "launch" reviews where they used a midrange GPU config to conclude that it did nothing for gaming performance?

    Anyway, there seem to be quite a few new names on here for this article. Wonder how many are employed by BigFoot? It's like there are a bunch of people bashing Gary for even reviewing the product at all, another group that's bashing him for not liking the card, a third group bashing him for not being able to do a 1 page writeup, and then a few people that think: "nice review; didn't surprise me much with the results, but at least we can now know that Killer can help in certain situations, even if it's overpriced as hell."

    I'm sure Gary was tested a lot more than is shown in this article. I've conversed with him in the past, and I'd wager he was pulling his hair out over this article. How many times did you write it Gary? Ten? More? I think you ought to post here and set the record straight, because my bet is that in terms of improving gaming performance the Killer NIC is as good as a NIC is going to get... which means the other NICs from Intel, 3COM, etc. are basically all as good as onboard solutions if that. There's really not much you can do to truly improve performance of a NIC for online gaming when you're looking at maybe 5ms worst case being delay added by the hardware and OS.

    As I said above in an earlier comment, it would be nice to have more developers like Jon Carmac around, because he apparently knows how to already perform well without lots of extra hardware. Can't say his games are the greatest, but the Doom 3 engine and networking aspects (client/server architecture) are clearly ahead of most other FPS solutions.
    Reply
  • WileCoyote - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    I was trying to keep my comment short, simple, and to the point. I don't need to write a page defending my opinion on something as trivial as a product review. The numbers speak for themselves in this review. And it wasn't so much the quantity but rather the quality - there is little to no structure in the review. That's fact, not opinion. There is a better way to write a review - I've read hundreds of them on Anandtech.

    I guess my Bachelor's Degree in Anthropology from a well-respected U.S. university doesn't count for much and neither does the successful business I created/own which pays a six-figure salary.
    Reply
  • Gary Key - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    quote:

    I guess my Bachelor's Degree in Anthropology from a well-respected U.S. university doesn't count for much and neither does the successful business I created/own which pays a six-figure salary.


    Apparently my MBA and the fact I am already retired (at 44 and doing this because I really enjoy it) does not count for very much either. LOL.....

    quote:

    And it wasn't so much the quantity but rather the quality - there is little to no structure in the review.


    Seriously, I am always looking to improve. How would you change the structure of the article?
    Reply
  • Aikouka - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Being that I run an FTP server that tends to see a decent amount of internal traffic, it actually sounds like a TNIC (or simply making a dedicated server) could actually be beneficial to me. Although, I sure have no desire to pay $300 for that card when I could easily spend the money on a second video card for SLi purposes or such. Also, I know switching from single to dual-core really helped to off-set the issue of FTP uploading on the local intranet. It really won't matter as when I build a new PC next month, I'm simple setting my old PC as a dedicated server to offload those annoying tasks.

    Also, Mlau, there are some games where "real estate" matters. World of Warcraft is a great example of this and I'm glad that I play the game in 1650x1080, because in certain situations, there's so much junk on your screen (I may call it junk but it actually helps :P), that you need all the extra room you can get. You may be happy in 1024x768, but that gives you no right to vehemently demean people for wanting to play in higher resolutions, which doing so also provides a better quality picture without wasting resources on Anti-Aliasing. Almost all the time, enjoying a game the way the developers designed/envisioned it can be an enriching experience for the gamer.

    Gary, your comment about WoW being limited to 64 FPS... I think you may've left Vertical Sync on :D. I can easily get 90FPS on my dated Athlon 64 X2 4400+ with a GeForce 6800GT OC playing in 1650x1080 with max graphics settings. Albeit, I don't get a constant 90FPS, but it can be easily attainable in non-expansive places. So yeah, if your refresh rate on your LCD/CRT was set to 60Hz, you probably would see your game hover around 60-64FPS or somwhere between that and 30FPS. I know I turned VSync off on mine as I couldn't constantly achieve 60FPS, so the game lowered my FPS to about 30 with VSync turned on. Simply turning it off raised me to an easy 45 minimum with no tearing evident. I know that in the Hillsbrad/Alterac area, I would probably get around 45-60 depending on how far into the distance I could see.
    Reply
  • Gary Key - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html;jses...">Blizzard Response

    quote:

    Gary, your comment about WoW being limited to 64 FPS... I think you may've left Vertical Sync on :D.


    Hi,

    We tried your suggestions during testing and nothing helped. We used both LCD and CRT monitors with vsync off. This was with several different video cards and Core 2 Duo/AM2 X2 processors. The frame rates were always capped to 64 until we switched to a single core processor on either system. We contacted Blizzard directly and they confirmed the dual core bug. The link above has their response on line item 6. Are you using FRAPS to capture the frame rates? If so which version please?

    Thanks!!!
    Reply
  • goinginstyle - Thursday, November 02, 2006 - link

    I downloaded FRAPS 2.81 and sure enough my 4800+ X2 is capped at 64FPS. Reply
  • otherwise - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    You can get an 10/100 ethernet card with a TOE dirt cheap for much less then $300 if you really want one. With most people who actuially need a TOE also demanding 10/100/1000 support, there is a glut of 10/100 TOE NICs. Reply
  • dijuremo - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    You will probably get more out of $300 if you get a hardware raid controller for your system (Areca comes to mind) which will not only provide a speed upin storage, but also redundancy for your system. I know it does nothing for your network performance, but is money better spent which is my point.

    I considered getting a Killer NIC for my new system, but did not do it because of price, no PCI-Express support (Mobo only has 2 PCI slots used for sound card and HDTV tuner and has 4 PCI Express slots, one used currently for Nvidia 7950GX2), plus performance gains were not that good (I read another review of this card about a month ago elsewhere).

    As for the person saying sli/xfire is useless, you are totally wrong. At 1920x1080 (using the LVM-37w3 LCD monitor - 1080p native) you need sli or xfire to have decent speeds to play games with AA and AF. If you don't play games or play at 1280x1024 or less it does not matter, but above that you really need sli or xfire.

    I also agree the article was a bit too long and actually more effective that a Lunesta overdose. Not sure if the writer is trying to avoid what just happened to HEXUS where they reviewed an Alienware PC and got e-mail back from the company saying they would not get any more harware because of the bad review...
    Reply
  • heated snail - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I don't mean to be a jerk, and I appreciate any sincere and fact-finding test/review article. However:

    I'm amazed, was this really a review of a basic hardware item? Because instead it reads like a mini-novel about all the difficulty the testers/reviewers had in doing their job. Is it too much to ask for a more verbally efficient writing style? About two paragraphs briefly acknowledging that this product has been hyped in the media, and acknowledging that testing was a little more difficult than usual... then get straight to the tests on page two and conclusions on page three. I can't believe how long it took to read through this whole thing with its very repetitive descriptions and self-references.
    Reply
  • Gary Key - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    quote:

    I don't mean to be a jerk, and I appreciate any sincere and fact-finding test/review article.


    I fully agree the article was probably too long. It was a case of trying to cover all the bases and then some. If we had left out the technology sections and reduced the commentary it would have read better as a basic hardware item. We looked at this as not being your basic NIC review.However, I am sure there would have been comments that we did not properly review the card or provide this same information. Thanks for the comments.
    Reply
  • Crassus - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    I agree with the comment above. I would have like an even more expanded page detailing the technology and the roots in the corporate sector. What I didn't really care about was the endless description of the pains it took to benchmark the card.
    Two things about that:
    1. If it was easy, everyone could do it. You (and Anandtech) stand above the crowd for going the extra mile and giving us some added (useful) information. This is usually self-evident and doesn't require elaboration.
    2. My firm expects me to get the job done, as, I suppose, it is the same with yours. No one gives a hoot as to all the steps I had to go through to get the job done, unless they offer some added value. Thinking about throwing something out of the window (if you're blessed with having one in your office) occurs to everyone at some point and certainly doesn't hold any additional value - in other words: it comes with the job. If it was otherwise, see (1) above. There's really no need to mention it a couple of times - unless you're reviewing your work instead of the product.
    Reply
  • Gary Key - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    quote:

    What I didn't really care about was the endless description of the pains it took to benchmark the card.


    I appreciate your comments. I am alawys open to other viewpoints and opinions. What paragraphs contained endless descriptions that in your opinion could have been cut? Email me if you can please.

    quote:

    Thinking about throwing something out of the window (if you're blessed with having one in your office) occurs to everyone at some point and certainly doesn't hold any additional value - in other words: it comes with the job.


    I agree it comes with the job. The message I was trying to convey was one of total frustration with the product after six weeks of almost non-stop testing. There were several choice words I wanted to use but felt like that statement would be universally understood. ;-)
    Reply
  • Sunrise089 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I really liked reading the article. When G80 comes out, we can cut strait to the benches, because I'm going to want to know whether or not to buy the card. None of us are going to buy this thing, but we're all enthusiests, so reading about it can still be fun. With performance changes so minor however, adding a little commentrary to spice up the review makes it a lot more entertaining for this reader. Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I'm in agreement with Sunrise - liked the article and the sarcasm. I can only imagine your pain during the review. Can't believe how many people apparently lack the ability to read and need pictures. "Just give us two paragraphs saying whether or not to buy the card!" Bah! That's what the conclusion page is for, where it's pretty clear the card "works as advertised" which means fractional gains in a few games. Reply
  • Zaitsev - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    "Just give us two paragraphs saying whether or not to buy the card!"

    The only reason I still read Anandtech is because they do exactly the opposite. In articles like this one and the Conroe review, I think the pages discussing the technology are more interesting than the results. I can't talk from experience, but it also seems that it would get boring for the authors if they just punched out cookie cutter articles for every review.

    As for the card, I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I bought this instead of a Conroe.
    Reply
  • michal1980 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    i can sum in up for you in one line.

    "In most cases the Killer-Nic Does Nothing"


    as for windows vista.

    it has a total new audio stack that is seperate from the kenernal, so in theory it could run on a core other then the main os kerenal.
    Reply
  • Googer - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    FNA is the only thing that makes a killer nic really worthwhile.

    http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1697,2037279...">http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1697,2037279...
    Reply
  • cryptonomicon - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Assuming the review quantified "ping measurements" correctly, this thing has a long way to go. If it gave even a consistent 10% faster pings all the time it would be very appealing to pro-gaming. But from those ping charts, the results were truely inconclusive. The side effect of increased FPS was even more significant than any ping reduction.

    Looking forward to revisions or later models from Bigfoot though!
    Reply
  • floffe - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    That's because in most cases 98% of the ping is not on the local computer, but from your internet connection point (DSL/cable modem or whatever) to the server. Tis means even cutting 5% off that will be very hard (in general. WoW seems to be an exception). Reply
  • rqle - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I never like to bash a company product because always believed there a niche market, but at its very best, this product doesnt seem to justified the $300 price cost. I do believe many would buy it at a lower price.

    My current broadband is 3.0mbps/512kb, i can pay $5 more a month more for Verizon Fiop 15mbps/2mbp, i would rather go that route for my improve network + other capibilities. As for the side processing function, a cheap $200 (Athlon64 3200+ computer system) can do a whole lot more. Am not saying it a bad product, it just price way to high for me.
    Reply
  • cornfedone - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    SOS, DD.

    Just as we've seen with Asian mobos in the last few years, this NIC card is an over-hyped, under-performing POS. Just as mobos from Asus, DFI, Sapphire, Abit, and more have suffered from vcore, BIOS, memory, PCI slot and many other issues, the BigJoke NIC card is more defective goods with zero customer support. I'm sure everyone looks forward to a wiped hard drive image... due to a poorly designed NIC card.

    Sooner or later consumers are gonna wise up and stop buying these defective products. Until they vote with their wallet instead of their penis, unscrupulous companies will continue to ship half baked POS products and fail to provide proper customer support. If consumers stop buying these defective goods, then the company will either correct their problems or go tits up.
    Reply
  • autoboy - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I didn't buy a NIC to make up for my small penis, I bought a Porsche. Chicks don't notice my NIC.

    The K does look pretty cool. Maybe it will fit on my Porsche.
    Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I dare say few if any people have purchased AGEIA or Killer NIC cards. As for your whining about ASUS, DFI, etc. I guess you're one of the people running a budget $50 mobo that can't understand what it's like to really push a system? Or are you the other extreme: you overclocked by 50% or more and are pissed that the system wasn't fully stable? Reply
  • slashbinslashbash - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    You talk a lot about how it's virtually impossible to test something whose entire performance is based almost entirely on an Internet connection which is inherently variable. That's why you need some more control over the variables in your test. Namely, a LAN.

    For example... have 4 computers, each with exactly the same configs except for the network cards. One of them has the KillerNIC, the rest have different NICs. They are all running Unreal Tournament. You also have one computer set up as the server, on the same Gigabit Ethernet switch as the 4 "player" machines. The level is a small plain square room with no doors, trenches, or any other features. Each of the "players" is running the same script where they have unlimited ammo and a machine gun, running circles around and around, shooting constantly from the minute they respawn. Let the scripts run for 100 hours and capture the framerate and pings on each machine.

    So you have 4 computer players running around in circles in a small square room, shooting each other for 100 hours. Yes, there will still be randomness, but over the course of 100 hours it should cancel out, and this test should be replicable. Any real differences between the NICs would come out over time. Run it again to make sure.

    Or maybe that's not the best way of doing it. I don't even play UT2003 so I don't know what's really possible and what's not, but I've heard of people doing scripts and stuff. Maybe there are better ways of doing it, but you can eliminate the variable of the Internet connection by limiting your testing to a LAN.
    Reply
  • Gary Key - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    quote:

    You talk a lot about how it's virtually impossible to test something whose entire performance is based almost entirely on an Internet connection which is inherently variable. That's why you need some more control over the variables in your test. Namely, a LAN.


    We tested over a LAN, the results were not that different, in fact the NVIDIA NIC and Intel PRO/1000 PT cards had better throughput and latencies the majority of the time. We did not show these results as the card is marketed to improve your Online Gaming experience. If the card had been marketed as a must have product to improve your gaming capability on a LAN then it would have been reviewed as such.

    When we tested on the LAN the steps you outlined were basically followed from a script viewpoint in order to ensure the variables were kept to a minimum. We did not provide these results, maybe we should have in hindsight. Our final opinion of the card would not have changed.

    Thanks for the comments. :)
    Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    The product is targeted at gamers. Look at the marketing material. now, while a LAN party goer might get some advantage out of it, there are FAR more people playing games from home using broadband connections. If this only improves performance in a LAN environment (clearly NOT what is being advertised), then it's already a failure. I like what Gary did here: look at real world testing and let us know how it turned out. Who gives a rip about controlled environments and theoretical performance increases if the reality is that the product basically doesn't help much? What's really funny is that they even show a ping "advantage" in FEAR of maximum 0.40ms and average 0.13ms. WTF!? Like anyone can notice a .13ms improvement in ping times! The frame rate improvements might be good (if they were available in many games)... still not $270+ good, though. Reply
  • Bladen - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Or as you touched on, do the test for a long time, or many many repeats, and let the averages soeak for themselves. Reply
  • shoRunner - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    You pay almost $300 for the ultimate NIC card, and its PCI so it can't even get anywhere near gigbit throughput. AND the CPU utilization isn't even better than an onboard solution. PLEASE. If anyone is truely thinking about buying this, send me a PM I've got some beautiful ocean front property in Montanta to sell you for pennies on the dollar. Reply
  • mlau - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    You underestimate this card greatly. This is the ultimate network card for linux:
    it could theoretically offload almost all of linux' network stack (including linux'
    advanced filtering/routing capabilites and protocols). It's a firewall-router on a
    card. IMHO the card is targeted for the wrong crowd (although I understand it somewhat,
    since gamers are usually stupid enough to buy 2 video cards and other completely
    unnecessary stuff [ageia comes to mind])
    Reply
  • stmok - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Yeah, I do agree.

    Its targetting at the wrong crowd. This product should be really for the hardcore enthusiasts. (I'm talking about those who actually use the command line on a regular basis). You don't expect clueless Windows users start tinkering with Linux, do you? :)


    As for SLI and Crossfire? Its a bloody joke.

    You buy two video cards today, and in 12 months time, they'll be outperformed by a single next generation video card. Yeah, money well spent there, isn't it?
    Reply
  • stmok - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    To be honest, if they opened up the specs for the card, and work with the community, you'd have a different product. (So they only focus on selling hardware and advising enthusiasts in how to develop software solutions for the card). Reply
  • yyrkoon - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    So the fact that Intels NIC cards regularly perform better than atleast 99% of the competition, and the fact they have made a PCI-E card is completely lost on you ?

    BTW the price of the Intel card is FAR less . . .
    Reply
  • Zebo - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    It's you who is stupid. Video you get your monies worth unlike this POS, anywhere from 60-75% inprovement moving to that second card in SLI/xfire config. Reply
  • mlau - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    as i said, i think this card is targeted at the wrong crowd. but then i don't doubt
    that the windows network stack is a POS and offloading it completely to a piece of
    hardware will free the host cpu for other tasks.

    as for sli/xfire, performance improvements are almost not noticeable (and sometimes
    perf decreases). noone except a few impressionable 12 year olds care about your fps
    in fear and other shooters. i play games to be entertained and not to watch the fps
    meter and tell my "friends" that "oooo i can play far cry in 2560x1200 8aa16af and still
    get 120 fps!!!1!!11oneone, you cant!!". you people are pathetic.
    Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    "as for sli/xfire, performance improvements are almost not noticeable"

    Clearly you have never used a higher end gaming PC on modern title. I can assure that the improvements are VERY noticeable if you play with a larger LCD (even 1920x1200) and want smooth frame rates, or if you even load up Oblivion at moderate resolutions. Yes, an increase from 100 to 170 FPS in some titles is basically meaningless, but going from 20 to 35 FPS in Oblivion makes the difference between sluggish and smooth gameplay. Whether or not it's worth the price is up for debate, but just because you can't afford it and don't play enough games to justify the purchase doesn't make is pathetic.

    BTW, I've got news for you moron: 12 year olds are NOT the people running SLI/Crossfire setups! But then your penis envy probably blinds you to that fact. Even in Linux, I doubt this card is worth the price of admission. $280 for another "coprocessor"? Lovely, except in another week or so $250 would add two more CPU cores and make the whole situation meaningless. Now let's just hope Vista has network stack improvements so that mutliple cores are truly useful for offloading audio and network tasks in games. Actually, that's probably at least partially a matter of getting game developers to do things more threaded-like.

    Hey Gary, did you test Quake 4 with a non-SMP configuration? I understand Q4 optimizations for SMP essentially consist of running the client and server code in separate threads, so maybe the server is already offloaded and there's nothing new for the Killer to do? Gee why can't other devs do this? Lazy bums!
    Reply
  • KAZANI - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    "Whether or not it's worth the price is up for debate, but just because you can't afford it and don't play enough games to justify the purchase doesn't make is pathetic."

    To my mind going into a 600$ expenditure so that you can play overhyped duds such as Oblivion counts as pathetic. I am still not convinced that it's the heavy gaming that warrants dual-GPU's and not dual-GPU's warranting heavy gaming.
    Reply
  • bob661 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    quote:

    To my mind going into a 600$ expenditure so that you can play overhyped duds such as Oblivion counts as pathetic. I am still not convinced that it's the heavy gaming that warrants dual-GPU's and not dual-GPU's warranting heavy gaming.
    In MY mind (the ONLY mind that's important), people that criticize others choice in computer hardware and games IS indeed pathetic. I AM convinced that you are as jealous, self-righteous, asshole that probably drives in the left lane on the freeway at the speed limit because no one needs to go faster than the almighty YOU.
    Reply
  • rushfan2006 - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    Agreed...there is a lot of people being dicks on this thread. I just don't understand it.

    If you don't like a game or something, just don't buy it - you can make your opinion about it so long as it offers some kind of value -- calling out the performance or problems with the product. But to associate someone's buying choice then calling them names its just gets ridiculous....its like grow the hell up already.

    Reply
  • KAZANI - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    Escuse me? You're spending 600$ to play Oblivion and you're telling me to "grow up"? DUDE, YOU NEED TIME OFF THE COMPUTER!

    Reply
  • mlau - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    Correct, I haven't (I do have bills to pay and don't waste what's left on improving my laptop). To me it's absolutely not worth shelling out 500$ so that oblivion runs with 5 fps more. Reducing resolution costs nothing. With the saved money you can buy loads of beers which will make playing that game much more interesting :)

    The card is too expensive for what it offers, and its benefits will vanish with the
    next cpu generation, no doubt. What makes the card interesting is the integrated
    offload of all of linux' filtering/routing. The card is marketed to the wrong crowd.

    PS: I think ati and nvidia need to be congratulated for finding another
    reason for gamers to shell out money. (and look, ati also wants you to buy 3 cards in the
    near future, for another completely useless thing: physics "simulation". I bet hundreds
    of people can't wait to post benchmarks and how it improved their framerates and how
    "physically correct" the dust now settles in $GAME)
    Reply
  • rushfan2006 - Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - link

    Agreed. I am a gamer a very long time gamer btw...if that counts for anything to do with anything...LOL...I've always built my own gaming boxes throughout the years -- so I think I have some relevant experience to base my opinions on. Though the guy is a bit brutish in how he makes his remarks, factually I believe he's correct in that right now with the state of technology the price:performance ratio for dual cards in games is just not there. If I'm going to invest a total of $1000 (two cards) I'd want to see DRAMATIC improvements. Now we all have our own standards -- so let me define mine...even 10% performance game for that investment is NOT "dramatic" to me. Research the benchmarks from your favorite tech sites, don't take my word for it -- the benchmarks speak for it.

    As for the topic of this Killer NIC...for me personally, as a gamer, its just a waste of money and the concept of it kind of makes me laugh to be honest.

    Reply
  • imaheadcase - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I agree, crossfire/SLI is not all that at all. Its just a marketing tool to make gamers think they need it. The difference though is that it has some nice uses other than games.

    Games should be the LAST thing people should think about when getting SLI/Crossfire.
    Reply
  • Frumious1 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I'm not sure if you're being sarcastic or idiotic. Hopefully the former? Marketing tools are trying to peddle something that has a negligible impact. You know, convincing people to upgrade from a 2.4 GHz E6600 to a 2.93 GHz X6800 for three times the cost... maximum performance increase is 22% for a 200% price hike! CrossFire and SLI on the other hand can give up to a 90% (and usually at least 50%) performance increase for a 100% price increase.

    Yup, that's totally marketing. So are large LCDs, because those are completely useless. (Yes, that's sarcasm.)
    Reply
  • feelingshorter - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    How about spend 300 bucks and buy windows? My bit defender works just fine as a firewall and doesn't use 300 dollars worth of CPU. Hell, you can buy a new cpu and off set any performance hit using software firewall with 300 bucks! Reply
  • Hypernova - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    But as the review says currently there are still NOTHING that shows the potential of FNapps. This is the card 2nd biggest selling point yet there's still nothing to show for it. Reply
  • cosmotic - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    quote:

    Yes, we will present data such as frame rates per second and ping times in several of the latest games available today.


    I don't think the "per second" is appropriate.
    Reply

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