Hardware is caught up in an eternal struggle to achieve the absolute best quality and performance in the latest games. With games like Doom 3 or Chronicles of Riddick, you don't need to have the best graphics card to enjoy them, but in order to play them (smoothly) with the highest quality settings, you need one that's top of the line. That's where NVIDIA's 7800 series comes in. This line of graphics cards is the most powerful that you can buy right now, and we intend ultimately to test and review as many as we can get our hands on.

Our last review covered EVGA's e-GeForce 7800 GTX, and this, the second in our series, will be on the MSI NX7800 GTX (VT2D256E). We are planning to review more and more variations of the 7800, and add them to the mix to see how they all stack up against each other. This will hopefully give you a good idea of which of these cards will best suit your needs.

Again, we'll be looking at heat, power draw and noise levels for the card. We'll also see how well the card performs with and without overclocking, and how it stands up to EVGA's 7800 and our reference G70. We've also added a set of tests with 4xAA enabled for comparison in the performance tests section.

Now that we have a second card in our series, we'll be looking closely at how these compare to each other. The most important factors in our decision will be performance and price. Before we get to the numbers, let's take a look at what we get out of the box.

The Card


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  • imaheadcase - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    I know how to show FPS in bf2, but does it have a in game benchmark?

    Curious how you benchmark bf2 as I would like to see how some cards compare (or not compare i should say).

    Good review
  • DerekWilson - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    A lot of people have been asking, so here ya go ... links to our battlefield 2 benchmark demos files.


    There are instructions somewhere on that describe how to use the demo.cmd file, but you will need to edit this file to set resolutions other than 800x600.

    Our data is compiled from the last 1700 frames of our demo run. The many thousand other frames that can result come from the load screen and aren't useful to show performance.
  • Spacecomber - Monday, August 01, 2005 - link

    What version of the game were these made under, Derek? Are they for the unpatched game? I couldn't get the demo to play. It would load the map, then it would crash me to the desktop while it was checking player assets or something to that effect. This was on a version of the game with the 1.02 patch.

  • DerekWilson - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    by the way, since it's the last 1700 frame, you've got to go into the frametimes csv file and manual calculate an average for the last 1700 lines of the 3rd column (after you've split the columns on ; ) for every test you do. It's kind of a pain, but for people that care, there it is. Reply
  • bob661 - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    How do you turn on the FPS in BF2? Thanks. Reply
  • Spacecomber - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    Use the tilde ~ key to access the console and enter this command, "renderer.drawFps 1" (no quotes).

    You can find these tips and a lot more in the Battlefield Tweak Guide that I mentioned in my first link in the post above.


  • Spacecomber - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    You'll need to create (or find one for downloading) a "demo" file which you can then run with the timedemo feature of the demo.cmd script file.

    A couple of sources for general information on downloading the demo.cmd script,creating demos, converting them to AVIs, and running timedemos.">From the BF2 Tweak Guide">EA UK's BF2 Forum Thread on the BF2 Recorder

    And,">Overclockers.AU article on running BF2 benchmarks (mentioned in the BF2 Tweak Guide.



  • p3r2y - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    anand has an article about different gpu's in bf2 stupid Reply
  • Sea Shadow - Monday, July 25, 2005 - link

    Great review, and props for filtering all the random spam.

    I can't wait to see the BFG review as it will help me decide which 7800 I am going to get.
  • xsilver - Sunday, July 24, 2005 - link

    congrats to anand to adding the filters
    no more dumb "first post" or "in soviet russia" anymore

    anyways with regard to the card
    why on earth would you not buy the egva card as it comes with BF2 --- its one of the few games that taxes the card -- even if you have the game already - selling it would net you an extra $30 at least
    kudos to evga for including a good game

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