AMD's ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT graphics card really does continue to show how it can be a dominant card in the market and that the next offering from AMD/ATI should be a strong competitor, we think.
Sure, Nvidia's GeForce 8800 Ultra continues to win but at pricing starting at around or sometimes over 40% of the HD 2900 XT, you would expect it too as well. You throw in the fact that the Intel P35 is the new "in" chipset (which currently only supports Crossfire for its dual graphics system) you really have to look at the HD 2900 XT as the graphics card of choice.
ASUS have got a fabulous HD 2900 XT package as well - the inclusion of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. alongside the normal Black Box is excellent and at least you feel you're getting something extra for your money.
It is also good to see that S.T.A.L.K.E.R. is bundled with the 8800 Ultra but so it should - there should be two or three copies at this price! The card is expensive and it's not ASUS fault. Nvidia is charging their partners literally a robotic arm and leg from their manufacturing plants for the chips, even after the recent price drop (from $830 USD to about $700 USD for standard non-factory OC versions) which probably wasn't really even enough.
With the new ATI Catalyst 6.7 drivers from AMD due out very soon, no doubt the HD 2900 XT is at the top of the priority list when it comes to performance improvements and even if it doesn't end up beating the 8800 Ultra, at only half the price, it is very easy to see the value in the Radeon HD 2900 XT. It got some bad press at launch but every time we take a closer look at it, it just seems to get better and better.
If anything the release of the Ultra and the high price take makes the HD 2900 XT look even better as it's not much slower (especially when overclocked, not far behind at all) but so much cheaper.
ASUS HD 2900 XT Summary
Great value for money!
Nice overclocking performance
Excellent gaming bundle
Monthly driver updates
No 6-pin to 8-pin power connector included
Rating - 9 out of 10 and TweakTown's "MUST HAVE" Editor's Choice Award!
ASUS 8800 Ultra Summary
Fastest card on the market
Bundle lacking for the price
Rating - 7 out of 10