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AMD unleash 790GX chipset, SB750 southbridge

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Posted August 6, 2008 by admin in CPU & Motherboards

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The 790GX may have the best integrated graphics component on the market, but it’s also only available on $150 motherboards. The 780G has the exact same video decoding block and (albeit slower) graphics core, but it can be had on motherboards that cost less than $90. That $60 price difference is just enough to score a Radeon HD 3650 that even AMD admits offers better performance than the combination of the 790GX and a Radeon HD 3470 in Hybrid CrossFire. If you want better game performance, then, you’re better off spending your money on a discrete graphics card. In the absence of something akin to the HybridPower tech available on Nvidia’s nForce 750a SLI chipset, which can power down discrete graphics cards and switch to the motherboard GPU at idle, the Radeon HD 3300’s appeal is largely irrelevant if you’re using a standalone graphics card.

At least the 790GX is more than just a hopped up integrated graphics processor. The most interesting element of the chipset for enthusiasts may be the Advanced Clock Calibration capabilities built into the new SB750 south bridge. AMD’s ATI acquisition pays big dividends here, allowing the SB750 to reprogram internal Phenom processor timings to improve overclocking. With our X4 9850 Black Edition, ACC is good for a 300MHz clock speed boost, and that’s not bad at all.

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