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Clash of the 3D Monsters - VisionTek Ti4600 vs. Gigabyte Radeon 8500

By: Cameron Johnson | AMD Radeon GPU in Video Cards | Posted: Jun 22, 2002 4:00 am

VisionTek Xtasy Ti4600 Features


The Card



The review sample that was loaned to us by InnoVision Australia was only an OEM sample which means we reviewed the unit with its barest components - no box, manual or games bundle. The card itself is designed almost to the letter of the nVidia reference GeForce 4 Ti4600 design with only one exception, the cooler.


Cooling and GPU




VisionTek have used a tunnel cooling system. This is a relatively new cooling concept where the heatsink it enclosed with a shroud to increase airflow across the heatsink unit. This allows best cooling using a relatively small space. Under this attractive looking unit is the nVidia GeForce 4 Ti4600 GPU running at a core speed of 300Mhz, a very fast core indeed.






VisionTek have equipped their 3D monster with 128MB of Samsung 2.8ns TinyBGA memory modules running at 650Mhz, this is the reference speed that nVidia stick to.


As the nVidia specification state that memory for optimized cooling and EMI dispersion, four modules should be placed on the front of the card and four on the back, VisionTek have followed this quite well.


TV Control




Like many companies that have TV in and out onboard their GeForce 4 flagships, VisionTek have added the Phillips SAA TV decoder chip for TV Decoding. This same chip is used on many TV tuner cards and produces excellent TV on PC. For TV output, VisionTek have done away with the Conexant or Chronotech TV encoders and have enlisted the services of the Realmagic SiliconMagic TV encoder chip. This same chip is what is used on Realmagic's Hollywood DVD Decoder card for TV output and produces much better TV signal than any other third party TV encoders.




Overclocking this card from the start was going to be a uphill battle. First off the memory is not cooled, and while at default speeds this is ok but when pushing the envelope we didn't see a huge success. We managed to get 689MHz out of the memory before we started to see artifacts. The core itself is also running almost at its full speed, we got an extra 13MHz out of the core for a total of 313MHz - This does give us some extra bandwidth but it's not an earth shattering overclock.


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