Powercolor X800 GTO 16 Video Card ReviewFormer staff writer - March 26, 2006
Category: Video Cards
Price: $195 USD
IntroductionOn occasion many of us, whether just wanting to upgrade our video cards or needing to replace a video card, delve into a market that produces so many choices it becomes quite confusing. The task would be simple if we just had one or two options to choose from but unfortunately it’s not. So we must narrow our choices down to three main factors, chipset (ATI or nVidia), performance and affordability. (There are also other producers of chipsets on the market but those chipsets are manufactured for other uses.) Which chipset you choose is usually a matter of preference; performance and affordability are based on what you are willing to spend to achieve your needs. Video cards are broken down into three categories, high end (performance at a price), mainstream (slightly less performance more affordability) and lower end (budget priced with possible outdated performance). With that in mind let’s focus our attention on a mainstream video card.
Today, I will be reviewing the PowerColor X800GTO 16. This is a mainstream video card with PCI-E x16 interface. PowerColor was established in 1999 and while researching the company, I learned that PowerColor is not just a trading company who does not have a production facility of its own; they produce all their boards in their own certified labs. So without further delay, let’s take a closer look at our card.
“Eye Candy”, most consumers’ act on impulse or something that catches their eye, this card comes packaged in a grey box with a big shiny 16, it pops out and says; “pick me up”.
Now that it has your attention and you further examine the box, you see that it comes with free bundled software; 256 MB of GDDR3 Ram and it also supports DVI and HDTV.
Since it has sparked your interest, you look at the rest of the box, to find out if this graphics card is right your system.
So now you’ve purchased the card and have it home, you open it to reveal its contents.
Inside you find the Set-Up CD, an installation guide, DVI to VGA connectors, S-Video to Composite cables, Software Bundle (which includes Pacific Fighters and Power DVD) and The Power Color X800 GTO 16 Series Graphics Board.
All right, now it’s time to take the Graphics board out of the anti static bag, so you can examine it.
First you notice the bright silver heat sink and fan with the ATI and Power Color logos on it. Your eyes then come to the cards PCI-E X16 interface connector.
You turn the board over to look at its base checking the serial number, bar codes and overall integrity of the board.
Flipping the board back over you now look at the front connectors to find, two DVI and one S-Video input.
This next step Overclockers Club recommends you do not attempt, we are trained professionals and are removing the heat sink and fan to expose the GPU Core. By removing the stock heat sink and fan, you can and will void your warranty.
Now that we have removed the heat sink and fan you can see that the GPU core used on this graphics card is the ATI Radeon 430 chip.
So now that you have inspected your new Graphics Board the time has come to see how it works.