Let's Look At It AgainSiS Xabre 400
Some time back, we looked at the difference between AGP8X and AGP4X on the SiS Xabre 400 running on the SiS648 reference board. While the difference was not a lot, it was significant and consistently apparent in all of the benchmarks we ran. In fact, it surpassed our expectations as we did not really think there would be any difference.
The Xabre 400 is not exactly a high performance GPU and so most would argue that it would not take the advantages offered by the increased AGP8X bandwidth. In fact, we speculated that the AGP8X would be more significant with faster GPUs (or VPUs) like the newly announced GeForce4 Ti 4200-8x. Well, we promised you guys that we'll update with AGP8X vs. AGP 4X results and we have got a full set of results with the GeForce4 Ti 4200-8x right here.
What about ATI's RADEON 9700 Pro? Well, we're currently working overtime to bring you those results shortly but before that, let's look at how much more we can gain with NVIDIA's NV28 core.
For those who still don't know what is AGP8X, well, all you need to know is that it's a new AGP interface standard that gives you double the theoretical bandwidth of AGP4X. If you need to know the details, check our previous article in the relevant links below.
There are not many graphics cards that comes with support for AGP8X. So far, only cards with the following graphics processors support AGP8X :-
ATI RADEON 9700 Pro
ATI RADEON 9700
ATI RADEON 9500 Pro
ATI RADEON 9500
NVIDIA GeForce4 MX 440-8x
NVIDIA GeForce4 Ti 4200-8x
It was unfortunate that Matrox did not offer any AGP8X part for their Parhelia range of graphics cards although they did mention during the press briefing that the Parhelia would support AGP8X. However, Matrox did not managed to deliver that. Even the newly announced 256MB version of the Parhelia would support only AGP4X.
Over at the motherboard side, you'll also need an AGP8X compliant motherboard to fully take advantage of these new graphics cards. Even if you have an older motherboard that supports only AGP4X, you can still use any of these AGP8X cards as the specifications allow for backward compatibility. Boards with the following chipsets will support AGP8X :-