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Gigabyte GeForce 8600GT Video Card Review

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What kind of performance did the graphics card deliver? It did well enough that gaming with medium to to high settings were playable at resolutions up to 1280x1024. After that point, if the settings were kept the same, performance dropped off quickly into the unplayable zone. As long as the eye candy is kept down at the lower end of the scale, higher resolutions can be played. What kind of noise was there? NONE! After all, there's no fan.  This is a great change from the hair dryer that normally resides in the graphics slot on my computer. The "Silent-Pipe II Technology" actually kept GPU temperatures well out of the danger zone. I was expecting temperatures in the 80 Celsius range, but after some gaming and benchmarking (3DMark06 looped 4 times) the on-board temperature sensor gave a reading of 58 Celsius via Riva Tuner; something I was not expecting. It may have something to do with the spacious case and airflow through it that helps the results, but regardless, it did the job admirably. While watching movies this card performs quite well. It didn't heat up and the picture quality was excellent. Overall performance was quite good when you throw the price point in. Coming in at a hair under 120 dollars, the performance for price is a great value. Especially when you consider that a thirty dollar game is included with the purchase.

With the HDCP support this card would be an excellent choice for use in an HTPC (Home Theater Personnel Computer). For an HTPC, silent operation is one of the biggest factors that can influence a video card purchase, and this video card delivers silence and performance in a compact package. If these qualities are essential to your next build, this card delivers the goods. The next time you are looking for a video card, keep this one in mind.


  • Silent performance
  • Silent and efficient cooling
  • DX 10 compatability
  • HDCP support 
  • Heatpipe cools effectively
  • 2560x1600 max resolution
  • Great for an HTPC
  • Performance value



  • Not for High resolution gaming with settings increased


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