We have to say going into the review of the GeForce 9800 GTX, we weren't expecting a lot. We are quite a fan of the GeForce 9800 GX2 but when we sit down and wonder if we would spend our hard earned money on it, you tend to think of the product in a different perspective. A week ago you couldn't go past the 9800 GX2 for the plain fact that it was the fastest graphics card on the market. Quad SLI also showed potential in games that are able to make full use of the technology like Crysis at the higher resolutions.
Even though this is one of our typical early tests using drivers available at the time of testing, NVIDIA's 9800 GTX is a fantastic product - at times it's even able to perform on par with the GX2 and sometimes even better if the game isn't able to make full use of SLI technology. What makes the GTX so attractive though is the price point - although, we must say that, when push comes to shove, the choice to not spend slightly more on the HD 3870 X2 is going to be a hard one to make, if you are neither an AMD nor NVIDIA fan. With the advancements AMD make in its Catalyst drivers every month, you have to wonder in two months time how the HD 3870 X2 and new GTX are going to fair against each other.
If you've set a strict budget of $500 or under the GeForce 9800 GTX is going to be the graphics card of choice. If you find yourself though being tempted to spend more, the Radeon HD 3870 X2 is probably going to quickly become a real possibility with all the numbers considered.
Stepping it up a notch or two, what we really need to know now is how not only three-way SLI goes but normal SLI as getting a pair of 9800 GTX cards should be only a little more expensive than a single 9800 GX2. The only problem is that you will require an SLI motherboard, which if you're a happy owner of an X38 or P35 based motherboard, might be a little hard to swallow a yet another upgrade, when you have a perfectly capable board already.
The GTX is a great single GPU graphics card which is pretty much going to halt any future purchases on the G92 8800GTS but it is not revolutionary, which is what a new naming scheme should be as far as we are concerned. If you were hoping for some really huge improvements over the 8800GTS, you'll have to wait for Nvidia's new technology.