A Closer Look - 9600XT
On what may seem like the complete other end of the spectrum, we are pleasantly surprised by a somewhat less audacious design. HIS Excalibur 9600XT evidently does not feature the same dual-PCI thermal solution as the 9800 IceQ, yet it packs a strong enough single speed fan and a well sized VPU heatsink to allow HIS to pre-overclock their entire line of Radeon 9600XT's an extra 150MHz. Impressive!
At a considerably lower price than that of the 9800 IceQ, the 9600XT by HIS is statistically quite an impressive product for the buck. Including virtually an identical bundle of accessories as its more expensive brother, impressive clock speeds and DirectX 9 compatibility, the 9600XT is just as luring from a consumer's standpoint as the IceQ technology.
As noticed in the image above, the 9600XT equips two identical oversized RAM heatsinks. This is rather rare for current mainstream graphics cards. Fortunately, however, the inclusion of these heatsinks is a good sign. The core clock of the 9600XT is, as several times mentioned, overclocked by 150MHz. This increase in core engine speed creates a thermal rise in both the VPU region and the memory (RAM). Subsequently, the two sections must be adequately cooled to prevent system lockups or even graphic card ignitions.
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