MSI DKA790GX Platinum Reviewajmatson - October 26, 2008
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There are a few thinks of note I want to point out about the MSI board and 790GX Platform. First is this board does have the ATI HD 3300 Integrated Graphics built in and while you might not be power gaming on it I want to show how the Sideport memory can increase your experience. I ran the Call of Juarez benchmark at the low settings and a shadow size of 2048x2048, turned off the AA and placed a resolution of 1280x1024 which is pretty low compared to today's gaming standards. While I know the game will still be unplayable I wanted to see how much of a jump the Sideport Memory gives when turned on not what the FPS is in general. So I set the UMA (Shared memory) to 512MB and ran one loop with Sideport turned off and one loop with Sideport turned on and set at 1333MHz. Below are the scores for each run. Again while they are low and unplayable at this speed turning on the Sideport Memory gave a 16% increase over using just the shared memory alone. Not bad for a memory chip soldered to the motherboard.
The second thing I wanted to point out is the integrated video works very well for watching movies thanks to ATI's Unified Video Decoder and ATI Avivo. This allows playback of videos and other media using only the onboard graphics. The processing is done via the HD 3300 graphics and off loads it from the CPU leaving your computer to run other tasks in the background. This is nice because that means no more choppy videos when watching your favorite DVD's. If you look at the picture below while playing the new Incredible Hulk DVD there is little to no CPU usage leaving the system free to do whatever else it needs without interrupting each other.