Gigabyte 7800 GTX

The grunty Gigabyte GV-NX78X256V-B 7800 GTX card can churn out enough eye candy to make your diabetes play up. The card is SLI-ready, has VIVO (video input/video output) capabilities, and is Gigabyte's first release using NVIDIA's 7800 GTX series chip.

With a 430MHz core frequency, 24 pixel shaders, eight vertex processors, 256MB GDDR3 and a memory clock speed of 1200MHz, this card packs tremendous game rendering power. It's cooled by a standard NVIDIA heat sink and fan assembly and noise from the fan was tolerable.

In our testing, the card turned in a respectable 6570 using 3DMark 2005, but really found its footing when being punished by Doom 3's ultrahigh settings - 1280x1024 resolution without antialiasing reached 102.4fps. In the same mode, but with 16x antialiasing settings, the card scored 19.4fps.

The bundle as a whole, at $839 is one of the better priced 7800 GTX cards, and it comes with Xpand Rally, Joint Operations: Typhoon Rising, Power Director 3 ME and Power DVD 6. That should satisfy your gaming and video requirements for a while. Even if you're not interested in the bundled software, the card's price and performance should be enough to tickle your fancy.

The results delivered by this card are inspiring, as is its $839 price tag (just $40 more than the ASUS 7800 GT for a substantial performance boost). The 7800 GTX series ooze visual goodness, and Gigabyte doesn't falter with this early offering's impressive performance.

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