GeForce 7900GS TurboForce
The next card that we are meeting today is the semi equivalent GeForce 7900GS. Semi equivalent, you ask?
While the card generally sits around $40 AUD or almost 20% cheaper than most Radeon X1950PRO cards, the performance that the card has to offer would make you think that it should be priced closer to the X1950PRO. It's extremely clear that nVidia are on a serious mission to take control of all ends of the market at the moment with competitive pricing across the board.
The front of the box has a lot of similar traits to that of the ATI card thanks to the same Call of Juarez theme being used. We again see on the front of the box the focus being on the included game and Zalman HSF. We can also see that this particular model is a TurboForce edition. With nVidia not being as strict as ATI, Gigabyte is able to bump up the core and memory clock speeds, which makes their product more attractive than other brands. It also adds another reason on why they should be using a higher quality aftermarket cooler.
The back of the box like the X1950PRO box gives us more detail on what the GeForce 7900GS core has to offer as opposed to more what the Gigabyte version does. With that said though, if we have a look towards the bottom right corner, we can see that Gigabyte are claiming around about a 10% performance boost increase in certain games due to TurboForce. This is pretty believable though as you will see later the overclocked 7900GS really sees some gains.
Moving inside the box we have a similar picture to that of the ATI card - a copy of Call of Juarez, Gigabyte CD with the usual goodies, manual, a couple DVI to VGA connectors and a TV Out break out box. There is no power cable included which is interesting but we will learn why in just a moment and again no TV out cables, unfortunately.
Moving to the card itself we again see the card is very similar to the X1950PRO. Most of the focus of the card is clearly on the Zalman HSF in the center. The main difference between the two cards physically is that the 7900GS is actually slightly shorter than the X1950PRO.
Having a quick look around the card we can see our standard SLI connector at the top of the card. What is interesting and if memory serves correctly, this is one of the first PCI Express cards that we have seen that use a standard Molex power connector, instead of the traditional 6-pin PCI Express power connector.
A quick look at the I/O side shows Dual DVI connectors that support Dual Link and of course the S-Video connector that connects the little TV-Out break out box to the card so you can make use of that feature.
The decision to use the Molex connector as opposed to a PCI Express is cool but it's pretty safe to say that these days a PCI Express power connector of power supplies is more and more common and people shouldn't really need to be using the adapters that are found in the packages. With that said though, if you don't have a PCI E connector, instead of having to use two Molex connectors to power your card as in the past, you can now get away with a single connector.