MSI R4830 512MB Overclock Edition ReviewTheScavenger -
Category: Video Cards
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This is an exciting time to be a high-performance PC enthusiast. It seems the only thing progressing faster than the hardware architecture are the price drops. Competition in most areas of computing is present but is fiercest in the video card segment particularly. Both ATI and nVidia have taken advantage of the power of the price drop to maintain their competitiveness. Certain nVidia cards that started out close to $300 at their release are now less than $200. A well performing HD 4850 can even be had now for $130 after mail in rebates. In addition, there seems to be a video card available at every possible price point from $50 to $500. A lack of variety is also not an issue. There are nearly 10 seperate models in ATI's 4000 series and 10 in nVidia's 9-series as well.
So, where does the R4830 fit into all of this? On paper its hardware is nearly identical to a 4850 although its clock speeds are significantly lower. Specifically, they both share RV770 cores, GDDR3 memory and 55nm manufacturing processes. We can talk about specifications all we want but real performance will be measured in our benchmarks. Let's continue.
As is typical with all of MSI's higher-end, ATI-based cards, the R4830s box comes emblazoned with the MSI orc. The front of the box lists a brief description of the R4830s specifications. The back of the packaging goes into much greater detail mentioning the cards solid state chokes, 4+1 power phase and system requirements. Interestingly, the box also has a handle on top of it.
After opening the box, we get our first clear view of the video card. Inside the box, the video card is safely packaged in foam and an anti-static bag to prevent damage. The accessories can be found in a white compartment below the video card.
The MSI R4830 comes with a variety of video adapters including a HDTV cable, S-video cable, S-video/HDTV adapter and a DVI/VGA adapter . Noticeably missing is an HDMI adapter however. Also included are two user guides and a drivers CD.
Now that we have a full comprehension of the packaged accessories let's move on to the video card.