GeForce 9800 GTX reviewed, again
Towards the end of the review, the 9800 GTX runs out of steam. It trails behind an 8800 GTX by 5% at the smallest and 34% at the largest in Lost Planet: Extreme Condition, 9% and 11% in Stalker, and 18% and 28% in UT3.
Disappointed? Yep, so were we. The 9800GTX doesn’t, in any way, feel like a successor to the 8800GTX. When nVidia launched the 8800GTX, it just blew everything else away but the 9800GTX is more like the transition that AMD recently went though between their HD 2000 and HD 3000 series. There isn’t really much of a performance improvement going from the 8800GTX to the 9800GTX- about 10% at lower resolution and details. But as you crank that up, the performance goes downhill which is probably because of the smaller 512MB frame buffer of the 9800GTX.
The price point of the 9800GTX isn’t something thats beneficial to it either. Its selling for about $425 in the retail market for which you can either get an AMD 3870X2 or a couple of 8800GT cards and run them in SLI. As we saw in previous pages, both perform better than the 9800GTX. I know that with driver updates, we will see a bit of a performance improvement over time but I doubt that will be enough. At the moment, we cant recommend the 9800GTX- you can either go the 9800 GX2 route if you have a little extra to spend or the AMD Radeon 3870 X2 route if you want to stick to a single card setup.
Nvidia’s 9800 GTX is set for launch on April 1st.