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Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card

The 9800 GTX+ has never been a stand-out card for us, but we see what Leadtek has done with it and if they can find a way to make it shine.

@ShawnBakerTW
Published Mon, Jan 5 2009 11:00 PM CST   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 7:04 PM CST
Rating: 90%Manufacturer: Leadtek

Introduction


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card



The 9800 GTX+ is just one of those cards that have never really done a whole lot for us. The thing about the card is that although there's nothing really wrong with it, there isn't anything that gets us up in arms over it either.

The latest 9800 GTX+ offering to make its way into our testbed comes from Leadtek and today we'll take the time to see if the card manages to do anything for us. It's been a while since we've looked at one and some newer drivers have been released for both ATI and NVIDIA cards since then.

Recently ATI has also released a new mid-range card called the HD 4830; we will take the time to see how the 9800 GTX+ fairs against that. While everyone is beginning to get a bit giddy over the new GTX 295 due out from NVIDIA, not everyone can afford the big price tag that these new cards carry. So before we check out the performance of the 9800 GTX+, let's have a quick look at the package and card for the people who don't want to blow a month's pay on a graphics card.

The Package




Not a whole lot has changed with the Leadtek package since we last saw something from them. Across the top of the box we have the Leadtek logo along with a few other NVIDIA logos. The middle of the box is mainly taken up with a picture of a robot wielding some pretty serious firepower.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Looking at the bottom of the box, we have some of the main specifications and features which include 512MB of GDDR3 memory, DirectX 10 support and more. Above this we have the model and to the right of we have a picture of the card.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Moving around to the back of the box, we have a closer look at the card along with some of its features. We also have some information regarding the speed of the card along with what's included in the bundle.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Moving inside the package, as far as CDs go we have a driver disc alongside a full version copy of Overlord. While I haven't heard of the game before, it's nice to see it included as more and more companies tend not to be including any games these days.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


As far as cables go, we have a DVI to VGA connector, component / s-video out dongle and a dual molex to 6-pin PCI Express connector.

The Card




Pulling the card out of the box, straight away you'll notice the shiny blue bit of bling sitting on the top of the card. Behind the vent like points on the piece of metal we can see the heatsink that helps keep the GPU cool.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


To the right we can see the fan that helps blow cool air across the GPU and out the back of the card. We can also see that Leadtek has placed a sticker on top of the fan which gives you the brand and model of the card.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Having a quick look around the card, there isn't anything we haven't seen before. Towards the back of the card we have a single 6-Pin PCI Express power connector sitting atop the green PCB, while closer to the front of the card shows a pair of SLI connectors in the event you want to run three of these cards together.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


At the front of the card we have two Dual-Link DVI connectors and an S-Video port. We also see some vents that help the hot air escape from the card.


Specifications

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


As we can see above, the card carries with it the stock 9800GTX+ clocks which means we have a 738MHz core, 1836MHz shader clock while the 512MB of GDDR3 memory comes in at 2200MHz DDR.

Test System Setup and 3DMark Vantage


Test System Setup

Processor(s): Intel i7 920 @ 3.8GHz (190MHz x 20)
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P (Supplied by Noctua)
Motherboard(s): GIGABYTE EX58-UD5 (Supplied by GIGABYTE)
Memory: 3 X 2GB OCZ Technology PC-12800 DDR-3 8-8-8-24 (OCZ3G1600LV6GK)
Hard Disk(s): Western Digital 300GB Velicorapter (Supplied by Western Digital)
Operating System: Windows XP Professional SP2, Windows Vista SP1 64-Bit
Drivers: Catalyst 8.12, ForceWare 180.47


Today we'll be having a look at how the 9800 GTX+ from Leadtek performs against two of the top mid-range offerings from AMD; the HD 4830 and the HD 4850. As far as pricing goes, the 9800 GTX+ is about 10% more expensive than the higher end HD 4850.


3DMark Vantage

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.1
Developer Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com
Product Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com/products/3dmarkvantage/
Buy It Here




3DMark Vantage is the new industry standard PC gaming performance benchmark from Futuremark, newly designed for Windows Vista and DirectX10. It includes two new graphics tests, two new CPU tests, several new feature tests, and support for the latest hardware.

3DMark Vantage is based on a completely new rendering engine, developed specifically to take full advantage of DirectX10, the new graphics API from Microsoft.


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Straight off the mark we can see both of the higher end cards perform very similar in performance to each other.

Benchmarks - PT Boats: Knights of the Sea


PT Boats: Knights of the Sea

Version and / or Patch Used: Benchmark Demo
Developer Homepage: http://en.akella.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.pt-boats.net/





PT Boats: Knights of the Sea is a naval action simulator that places gamers in charge of a mosquito fleet of the Allied Forces, Russia or Germany during the height of World War II.

Using the latest Direct X 10 technology PT Boards - Knights of the Sea manages to apply a lot of stress to the components of today which in turn gives us quite an intensive benchmark.


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


We see the Leadtek 9800GTX+ comes out a fair bit in front here. This is nothing too unusual, though, since PT Boats tends to favor NVIDIA based cards.

Benchmarks - CINEBENCH R10


CINEBENCH R10

Version and / or Patch Used: Release 10
Developer Homepage: http://www.maxon.net/
Product Homepage: http://www.maxon.net




CINEBENCH is a real-world test suite that assesses your computer's performace capabilities. MAXON CINEBENCH is based on MAXON's award-winning animation software, CINEMA 4D, which is used extensively by studios and production houses worldwide for 3D content creation. MAXON software has been used in blockbuster movies such as Spider-Man, Star Wars, The Chronicles of Narnia and many more.

MAXON CINEBENCH runs several tests on your computer to measure the performance of the main processor and the graphics card under real world circumstances. The benchmark application makes use of up to 16 CPUs or CPU cores and is available for Windows (32-bit and 64-Bit) and Macintosh (PPC and Intel-based).


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


CINEBENCH put's all three cards quite close together with just over 5% separating them.

Benchmarks - World in Conflict


World in Conflict

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.0.5
Timedemo or Level Used: Built-in Test
Developer Homepage: http://www.massive.se
Product Homepage: http://www.worldinconflict.com





World in Conflict is a real-time strategy video game by Massive Entertainment and to be published by Sierra Entertainment for Windows (DX9 and DX10) and the Xbox 360.

The game is set in 1989 where economic troubles cripple the Soviet Union and threaten to dissolve it. However, the title pursues a "what if" scenario where, in this case, the Soviet Union does not collapse and instead pursues a course of war to remain in power. It is an intensive new game is sure to put plenty of stress on even the latest graphics cards and we use the built-in benchmarking for our testing.


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Under WIC we see the 9800 GTX+ is coming out ahead by a fair chunk with it being over that important 30FPS minimum at 1680 x 1050.

Benchmarks - Crysis Warhead


Crysis Warhead

Version and / or Patch Used: unpatched
Timedemo or Level Used: Airfield
Developer Homepage: http://www.crytek.com
Product Homepage: http://crysiswarhead.ea.com/
Buy It Here




Crysis Warhead updates and refines the gameplay of the original game through a sidestory plot involving Psycho, one of previous protagonist Nomad's allies. The game is a parallel story that follows Sergeant Michael "Psycho" Sykes, a character from the original Crysis, as he faces his own trials and challenges on the other side of the island during the time period of the first game.

It also showcases a new, enhanced and optimized version of CryEngine 2 using full DX10 extensions and is the first game developed by Crytek's Budapest studio.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Warhead performance is a bit all over the place. At the higher resolution we see the minimum nose dive on the 9800 GTX+, but at the lower resolution we see it has a decent jump on the HD 4850.

Benchmarks - Far Cry 2


Far Cry 2

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.01
Timedemo or Level Used: Ranch Long
Developer Homepage: http://www.ubi.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.farcry2.com/
Buy It Here




The Dunia Engine was built specifically for Far Cry 2 by the award-winning Ubisoft Montreal development team. It delivers the most realistic destructible environments, amazing special effects such as dynamic fire propagation and storm effects, real-time night-and-day cycle, dynamic music system, non-scripted enemy A.I. and so much more.


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


While we see the averages are quite similar between the HD 4850 and the 9800 GTX+, in the minimum department the 9800 GTX+ performs similarly better.

Benchmarks - S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky


S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.5.07
Timedemo or Level Used: Custom Timedemo
Developer Homepage: http://www.gsc-game.com/
Product Homepage: http://cs.stalker-game.com/en/
Buy It Here




S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, is the stand-alone prequel for S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, a first-person shooter computer game by Ukrainian developer GSC Game World.[3] The game consists of a roughly 50/50 mix of new areas and old, remodeled areas from the previous game. The X-ray graphics engine has been updated to version 1.5 and includes DirectX 10 support (later patch 1.5.06 included DirectX 10.1). Additionally, the AI received an overhaul to accommodate the new faction wars feature.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Under Clear Sky we can see that the HD 4850 manages to perform better than the 9800 GTX+ here.

Benchmarks - Left 4 Dead


Left 4 Dead

Version and / or Patch Used: Latest Steam Update
Timedemo or Level Used: Custom Timedemo
Developer Homepage: http://www.valvesoftware.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.l4d.com/
Buy It Here




Left 4 Dead uses the latest version of Valve's Source engine, with improvements such as multi-core processor support and physics-based animation to more realistically portray hair and clothing, and to improve physics interaction with enemies when shot or shoved in different body parts. Animation was also improved to allow characters to lean realistically when moving in curved paths.

Rendering and artificial intelligence were scaled up to allow for greater number of enemies who can navigate the world in better ways, such as climbing, jumping or breaking obstacles. Lighting has been enhanced with new self-shadowing normal mapping and advanced shadow rendering that is important to convey information about the environment and player actions.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Left 4 Dead put's the 9800 GTX+ ahead of the HD 4850. At 2560 x 1600 we see the 9800 GTX+ is 10% faster.

Benchmarks - High Quality AA and AF


High Quality AA and AF

Our high quality tests let us separate the men from the boys and the ladies from the girls. If the cards weren't struggling before they will start to now.


Far Cry 2

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


The 9800 GTX+ is a good jump ahead of the HD 4850. But with that said, none of the cards offer a playable setup at these settings.


World In Conflict

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


In the average department we see both the HD 4850 and 9800 GTX+ perform very similar. In the more important minimum department, though, we see the 9800 GTX+ is faster.


Left 4 Dead

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


With AA and AF enabled under Left 4 Dead we see the 9800 GTX fall back.

Benchmarks - World in Conflict - XP


World in Conflict

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.0.5
Timedemo or Level Used: Built-in Test
Developer Homepage: http://www.massive.se
Product Homepage: http://www.worldinconflict.com




World in Conflict is a real-time strategy video game by Massive Entertainment and to be published by Sierra Entertainment for Windows (DX9 and DX10) and the Xbox 360.

The game is set in 1989 where economic troubles cripple the Soviet Union and threaten to dissolve it. However, the title pursues a "what if" scenario where, in this case, the Soviet Union does not collapse and instead pursues a course of war to remain in power. It is an intensive new game is sure to put plenty of stress on even the latest graphics cards and we use the built-in benchmarking for our testing.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


We again see even under XP that in the average department the HD 4850 and 9800 GTX+ perform quite similarly. The minimum FPS picture is a different story, though, as the NVIDIA offering performs significantly better.

Benchmarks - Far Cry 2 - XP


Far Cry 2

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.01
Timedemo or Level Used: Ranch Long
Developer Homepage: http://www.ubi.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.farcry2.com/
Buy It Here




The Dunia Engine was built specifically for Far Cry 2 by the award-winning Ubisoft Montreal development team. It delivers the most realistic destructible environments, amazing special effects such as dynamic fire propagation and storm effects, real-time night-and-day cycle, dynamic music system, non-scripted enemy A.I. and so much more.


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


While the 9800 GTX+ and HD 4850 perform quite close together, the Leadtek offering does come out ahead.

Benchmarks - S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky - XP


S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - Clear Sky

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.5.07
Timedemo or Level Used: Custom Timedemo
Developer Homepage: http://www.gsc-game.com/
Product Homepage: http://cs.stalker-game.com/en/
Buy It Here




S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, is the stand-alone prequel for S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, a first-person shooter computer game by Ukrainian developer GSC Game World.[3] The game consists of a roughly 50/50 mix of new areas and old, remodeled areas from the previous game. The X-ray graphics engine has been updated to version 1.5 and includes DirectX 10 support (later patch 1.5.06 included DirectX 10.1). Additionally, the AI received an overhaul to accommodate the new faction wars feature.

Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Under Clear Sky we again see the HD 4850 perform better than the 9800 GTX+.

Temperature & Sound Tests


Temperature Tests



With the TES 1326 Infrared Thermometer literally in hand we found ourselves getting real-world temperatures from the products we test at load (3D clock speeds).

There are two places we pull temperature from - the back of the card directly behind the core and if the card is dual slot and has an exhaust point we also pull a temperate from there, as seen in the picture.


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


As far as heat goes, the 9800 GTX+ comes in a few degrees cooler.


Sound Tests



Pulling out the TES 1350A Sound Level Meter we find ourselves quickly yelling into the top of it to see how loud we can be.

After five minutes of that we get a bit more serious and place the device two CM away from the fan on the card to find the maximum noise level of the card when idle (2D mode) and in load (3D mode).


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


Noise levels from the 9800 GTX+ sit similar with the HD 4830, which is good news as the HD 4850 is a good 10dB louder.

Power Consumption Tests






Using our new PROVA Power Analyzer WM-01 or "Power Thingy" as it has become quickly known as to our readers, we are now able to find out what kind of power is being used by our test system and the associated graphics cards installed. Keep in mind; it tests the complete system (minus LCD monitor, which is plugged directly into AC wall socket).

There are a few important notes to remember though; while our maximum power is taken in 3DMark06 at the same exact point, we have seen in particular tests the power being drawn as much as 10% more. We test at the exact same stage every time; therefore tests should be very consistent and accurate.

The other thing to remember is that our test system is bare minimum - only a 7,200RPM SATA-II single hard drive is used without CD ROM or many cooling fans.

So while the system might draw 400 watts in our test system, placing it into your own PC with a number of other items, the draw is going to be higher.


Leadtek WinFast PX9800GTX+ 512MB Graphics Card


It doesn't come as any real surprise that the 9800 GTX+ takes up the most power with it being the fastest card here for the most part.

Final Thoughts




With some aggressive driver updates from the Catalyst driver team, the 9800 GTX+ manages to do a good job of keeping the HD 4850 at bay with it out performing the card most of the time.

Deciding which card to buy really comes down to your budget. Under $200 AUD you should look at the HD 4830; $200 AUD and you're better off looking at the HD 4850 while around the $220 AUD mark the 9800 GTX+ is the best option. If you want to spend a bit more you can get yourself an overclocked version which is going to yield a few more FPS again.

The Leadtek 9800 GTX+ is a pretty good card; its performance is pretty good for cost and it's also nice to see that Leadtek have included a full version game. Pricing is good, performance is good, the bundle is good and ultimately the 9800 GTX+ from Leadtek is a good all round graphics card for people who want to spend this money.

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Shawn takes care of all of our video card reviews. From 2009, Shawn is also taking care of our memory reviews, and from May 2011, Shawn also takes care of our CPU, chipset and motherboard reviews. As of December 2011, Shawn is based out of Taipei, Taiwan.

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