ZOGIS 9800GTX Review

Makaveli - 2008-03-25 22:37:08 in Video Cards
Category: Video Cards
Reviewed by: Makaveli   
Reviewed on: April 1, 2008
Price: $299.99

Introduction:

With all of nVidia's 9 series graphics cards flooding the market, it's clear to see that these cards are marketed as good performance cards with an appealing price. Nowadays, everyone is looking for the absolute best performance for an affordable price and so far, the nVidia 9 series cards live up to both of those standards. Sure, the 9 series cards thus far haven't blown the 8 series out of the water, but what about the new 9800GTX? Will this card perform better than any other nVidia card? Most importantly, will this card give enthusiasts exceptional performance at a decent price?  Let's take a look at nVidia's latest fabrication.

The ZOGIS 9800GTX features a 1000MHz clock on 512MB of GDDR3 high speed memory, a 675MHz GPU core clock speed, and a shader clock of 1688MHz. Sounds like a beast, huh? We're about to find out. It'll be interesting to see how far this card can be overclocked and to see how well the ZOGIS cooling system works on this particular card. Join me as I thoroughly investigate the ZOGIS 9800GTX video card and compare it to some of today's best graphics cards.

Wait a minute, who is ZOGIS? Good question. ZOGIS is a newer company built of gamers and enthusiasts, much like ourselves, that demand nothing less than excellence for each of its products. ZOGIS is a branch of PowerColor and that alone says enough. ZOGIS performs the way PowerColor does, making high quality, affordable, dependable, and innovative products to feed every users' needs.

 

Closer Look:

The ZOGIS 9800GTX comes packaged in a rather large and attractive box featuring a dragon blowing fire on the front of the box. On the back of the box, you'll find some specifications and key features of the card. On either side of the box, you'll find more features, and a list of reasons why nVidia is the best choice in video cards.

 

 

 

When you open the box, you'll find a ZOGIS sticker laying on some instructions. Packed away in the front of the box are the accesorries and resting in red bubble wrap and anti-static material is the 9800GTX.

 

 

 

Included with the ZOGIS 9800GTX are two DVI to VGA adapters, two 4-pin Molex to 6-pin PCI-E power converters, an S-Video breakout cable, and a long S-Video cable. You'll also find a manual, driver CD, and a ZOGIS sticker.

 

Now let's take a look at the ZOGIS 9800GTX card itself.

Closer Look:

The ZOGIS 9800GTX is a very large video card measuring in at about 10.5 inches long. This card features a dual slot cooling system, so you'll need to have two expansion slots open for this card to fit properly. The stock GPU core clock is 675MHz, the memory clock is 1100MHz, and the shader clock is set to 1688MHz at stock. On the front of the video card, you'll see a silver tribal-like symbol and a "Z" on the fan standing for "ZOGIS." This card supports either PCI-E x16 1.0 or 2.0 slots as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The ZOGIS 9800GTX features two DVI ports that feature dual link DVI technology. There is also an S-Video port on the card, as well as slots in the front grill to allow air to be constantly flowing through the card. The back of the card is exposed, revealing some capacitors and allowing heat to pass out the rear end of the video card.

 

 

This card is powered by two 6-pin cables. Quite a demand of power, I'd say! This 9800GTX is also SLI-Enabled for users who wish to use more than one 9800GTX at a time.

 

 

Here is a shot of the 65nm GPU, as well as the memory and capacitors. The lettering on the GPU is "G92-420-A2."

 

 

This card uses a copper/aluminum heatsink to cool the GPU. Looks like a good setup here - I wonder how well the GPU and memory will be able to overclock?

 

 

Now let's get the drivers installed and everything up and running!

 

Configuration:

To ensure that your ZOGIS 9800GTX works as prescribed, insert the included driver CD, choose your operating system, and follow the onscreen instructions to completely install the drivers. You'll need to reboot your computer after a complete installation of the drivers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once you have completed installing the drivers, you'll be able to set up your settings for your card in the nVidia Control Panel. You'll be able to change almost every option you can think of as far as monitor properties and graphics go.

 

 

Now that everything is installed and ready to go, let's start testing!

 

Specifications:

 

Fabrication Process

65 nm

Number of Transistors

754 million

Core Clock (Including dispatch, texture units, and ROP units)

675 MHz

Shader Clock (Processor Cores)

1688 MHz

Processor Cores

128

Memory Clock (Clock rate / Data rate)

1100 MHz / 2200 MHz

Memory Interface

256 bit

Total Memory Bandwidth

70.4 GB/s

Memory Size

512 MB

ROPs

16

Texture Filtering Units

64

Texture Filtering Rate

43.2 GigaTexels/sec

HDCP Support

Yes

HDMI Support

Yes (Using DVI-to-HDMI adaptor)

Connectors

2 x Dual-Link DVI-I 1 x 7-pin HDTV Out

RAMDACs

400 MHz

Bus Technology

PCI Express 2.0

Form Factor

Dual Slot

Power Connectors

2 x 6-pin

Max Board Power

156 watts

GPU Thermal Threshold1

105° C

 

Features:

Testing:

To thoroughly test the ZOGIS 9800GTX, I'm going to be running it through a series of popular games. Some of these games are extremely new while others have been on the market for some time. All of the video cards that I'm going to be comparing against this ZOGIS 9800GTX were tested at stock settings and with the latest driver revisions. Below, you can find the test system that I used during the testing of this card. After the stock testing is done, I will overclock this card as far as it will let me go before it screams for mercy.

Comparison Video Cards:

 

Overclocking:

Overclocked settings:

The ZOGIS 9800GTX was a beast when it came to overclocking. I was able to overclock the stock GPU clock of 675MHz all the way up to 823MHz! A 148MHz overclock is quite good if you ask me. I was also able to get the stock memory clock of 1100MHz all the way up to 1274MHz - a 174MHz increase. The shader clock was stock at 1688MHz, but I was able to bring it up to 2001MHz. The core clock was able to go higher, but the memory kept having to go down, so these numbers are the absolute highest that I could get for all three of the variables. I've never overclocked any other video card nearly this much in all of my years of overclocking. I'm thoroughly impressed with the ZOGIS 9800GTX's overclocking ability.

Benchmarks:

  1. Crysis
  2. Knights of the Sea
  3. Bioshock
  4. Call of Duty 4
  5. World in Conflict
  6. Call of Jaurez
  7. 3DMark 06 Professional

 

Testing:

Crysis is one of the most popular DirectX 10 first person shooters on the market today. This game features unbelievable graphics that really take a toll on video cards.

 

Settings:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The ZOGIS 9800GTX took the final two resolutions in this game.

 

Testing:

PT Boats: Knights of the Sea is a new DirectX10 game that allows the gamer to fight a war at sea. This game features its own graphics engine that is currently in development.

 

The settings we will use are below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The ZOGIS 9800GTX outperformed all of the cards in this benchmark. However, the 8800GTX came very close to it in some of the resolutions.

 

Testing:

BioShock is a fairly recent Sci-Fi first person shooter that can deal quite a blow to video cards.

 

Settings:

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The ZOGIS 9800GTX took three of the four resolutions, only falling to the 8800GTS and 8800GT in the 1024x768 resolution.

 

Testing:

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is the latest chapter in the Call of Duty series. This installment is by far my favorite in the Call of Duty line-up. The graphics are absolutely stunning and they can be pretty tough on a video card.

 

The settings used are listed below:

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The ZOGIS 9800GTX only came out on top in the two lowest resolutions and fell by a few frames to the 8800GTS in the top two resolutions.

 

Testing:

World In Conflict is a new DirectX 10 game that simulates an all out, disastrous war that seems hopeless at first.

 

The settings we will use are listed below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here goes the ZOGIS 9800GTX again, taking first place in all of the resolutions.

 

Testing:

Call of Juarez is a new DirectX10 Wild-Wild-West style first person shooter that features some challenging graphics.

 

The settings we will use are listed below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The other cards fought extremely hard against the ZOGIS 9800GTX and came up fairly close in all of the resolutions.

 

Testing:

Company of Heroes (Opposing Fronts) is a newer installment in the Company of Heroes series. This game allows you to play as either the British or Germans in a World War 2 setting.

 

Settings:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 8800GTS performed the best in the first two resolutions, smothering everything in the 1024x768 resolution. The ZOGIS 9800GTX did much better than the other cards in the higher resolutions.

 

Testing:

3DMark06 is the benchmark that everyone brings up when they're bragging about their systems. Let's see how the ZOGIS 9800GTX fares.

 

Settings:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 9800GTX did the best here, but it is very evident that the CPU is holding this card back.

 

Conclusion:

The ZOGIS 9800GTX is an excellent video card. This video card took first place in 25 of 32 tests and outperformed the 8800GTX in every single test. If you ask me, twenty-five out of thirty-two is quite good, especially after you take a look at how stacked the competition was. The overclocking headroom that this particular card has is simply massive! A whopping 148MHz increase on the GPU clock and a 174MHz increase on the memory clock. That is, by far, the largest headroom that I have ever seen on any video card that I've tested. To make things even better, the fan was very quiet at all times. Even with a 100% load on the video card, the fan was much quieter than any other video card's fan at 100% load that I've tested. Not only does this card perform well, it's priced at a very affordable and reasonable range of $299-$349. To give you an idea, you can still find the 8800GTXs for sale much closer to $400! Also, the ZOGIS 9800GTX is Hybrid and Tri-SLI capable. Hybrid-SLi is a new technology from nVidia that allows the user to use SLI but have only one onboard GPU running during simple 2D graphics, and once the user starts running more intense 3D graphics, the other video cards in the SLI start running. This, of course, requires a hybrid SLI capable motherboard. This ends up saving a lot of power instead of running two or three SLI cards all at full power. Speaking of Tri-SLI, this card joins the 8800GTX and 8800 Ultra as the only cards that can take advantage of this technology. The only con for this video card is that it is fairly large. It measures 10.5 inches long and for some users, this might not fit comfortably in their case, but for me it was no issue. If you are looking for an affordable, impressive performing, and overclocking beast of a video card, definitely do yourself a favor and pick up the ZOGIS 9800GTX.

Another great reason to pick up a ZOGIS 9800GTX from Newegg.com is that for a limited time, everyone will get a free T-shirt and a chance to win another ZOGIS 9800GTX to complete an SLI system! Talk about a great deal from ZOGIS! Please read the details on either company's website.

 

Pros:

 

Cons: