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» Channels :: Graphics Card
MSI FX5600-VTDR128 (GeForce FX 5600)
By Vijay Anand
Category : Graphics
Published by Jimmy Tang on Wednesday, 17th December, 2003
Rating : 5 out of 5 stars  


Introduction

In our MSI FX 5600 Ultra graphics card review, we made known to our readers that the NVIDIA GeForceFX 5600 Ultra GPU component was in short supply and the lack of variety for cards based on that GPU. The whole perspective of the situation made a lot more sense after NVIDIA’s recent launch of the GeForce FX 5700 Ultra, which sported specifications and price not too distant from the FX 5600 Ultra. Although there was no mention of the newcomer replacing the FX 5600 Ultra, we could easily infer that the entry of the FX 5700 Ultra spells the demise of the FX 5600 Ultra. After all, the RADEON 9600 PRO is slowly being replaced by the newer XT version and similarly, NVIDIA is following its competitor to update its offering.

In any case, both the FX 5600 Ultra and FX 5700 Ultra graphics cards are in the US$200 (S$340) price bracket. However, the basic GeForce FX 5600 is still available and is a much more affordable card that can easily be found for far less than S$300. The 5600 series does not differ much over the 5200 series other than the clock speed difference and the inclusion of the NVIDIA Intellisample Technology which greatly aids performance when FSAA and AF are applied. In fact, the FX 5200 Ultra is the closest match in specifications to the FX 5600 and our test results too were able to mimic each other when no FSAA and AF were utilized. You can refer to the below specification table for comparison of the various graphics chips that are closely related to the GeForce FX 5600 series in terms of performance and price.

Comparison of GeForce FX 5600 With Other GPUs
GPU/VPU NVIDIA GeForce FX 5600 NVIDIA GeForce FX 5600 Ultra NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 Ultra RADEON
9600 PRO
RADEON
9600
RADEON
9500
NVIDIA GeForce4 Ti 4200-8x
Core Code NV31 NV31 NV34 RV350 RV350 R300 NV28
Manufacturing Process (microns) 0.13 0.13 0.15 0.13 0.13 0.15 0.15
Core Clock 325MHz 400MHz 325MHz 400MHz 325MHz 275MHz 250MHz
Rendering (Pixel) Pipelines 4 4 4 4 4 4 4
Pixel Fill Rate (MPixels/s) 1,300 1,600 1,300 1,600 1,300 1,100 1,000
Texture Units per Pipeline 1 1 1 1 1 1 2
Peak Texture Fill Rate (Mtexels/s) 1,300 1,600 1,300 1,600 1,300 1,100 2,000
Vertex Shaders Array Array Array 2 2 4 2
Memory Clock 275MHz (550MHz DDR) 400MHz (800MHz DDR) 325MHz (650MHz DDR) 300MHz (600MHz DDR) 200MHz (400MHz DDR) 270MHz (540MHz DDR) 256MHz (512MHz DDR)
DDR Memory Bus 128-bit 128-bit 128-bit 128-bit 128-bit 128-bit 128-bit
Memory Bandwidth 8.8GB/s 12.8GB/s 10.4GB/s 9.6GB/s 6.4GB/s 8.6GB/s 8.2GB/s
ATI
SMARTSHADER
- - - 2.0 2.0 2.0 -
ATI SMOOTHVISION - - - 2.1 2.1 2.0 -
ATI HYPER Z - - - III+ III+ III -
ATI TRUEFORM - - - 2.0 2.0 2.0 -
NVIDIA LMA II Yes Yes partial - - - Yes
NVIDIA nfiniteFX II Engine - - - - - - Yes
Accuview-AA - - - - - - Yes
NVIDIA CineFX Engine Yes Yes Yes - - - -
NVIDIA Intellisample technology Yes Yes - - - - -
Pixel Shader Support 2.0+ 2.0+ 2.0+ 2.0 2.0 2.0 1.3
Vertex Shader Support 2.0+ 2.0+ 2.0+ 2.0 2.0 2.0 1.1
DirectX Support Up to DirectX 9.0 Up to DirectX 9.0 Up to DirectX 9.0 Up to DirectX 9.0 Up to DirectX 9.0 Up to DirectX 9.0 Up to DirectX 8.0
FSAA Mode Multi Sampling
(up to 8x)
Multi Sampling
(up to 8x)
Multi Sampling
(up to 4xS)
Multi Sampling
(Up to 6x)
Multi Sampling
(Up to 6x)
Multi Sampling
(Up to 6x)
Multi Sampling
(up to 4xS)
Anisotropic filtering Modes Up to 8x Up to 8x Up to 8x Up to 16x Up to 16x Up to 16x Up to 8x
Other Features
  •  NView
  • DVC 3.0
  • Support for NVIDIA Cg
  •  NView
  • DVC 3.0
  • Support for NVIDIA Cg
  •  NView
  • DVC 3.0
  • Support for NVIDIA Cg
  • Video
    Shader
  • HYDRA
    VISION
  • Video
    Shader
  • HYDRA
    VISION
  • Video
    Shader
  • HYDRA
    VISION
  •  NView
  • DVC
  • RAMDAC Dual 400MHz Dual 400MHz Dual 350MHz Dual 400MHz Dual 400MHz Dual 400MHz Dual 350Hz
    TV Output Int., 1024x768 Int., 1024x768 Int., 1024x768 Int., 1024x768 Int., 1024x768 Int., 1024x768 optional
    TMDS transmitter Int. 165MHz Int. 165MHz Int. 165MHz Int. 165MHz Int. 165MHz Int. 165MHz optional
    AGP speed 8x 8x 8x 8x 8x 8x 8x
    AGP bus Compatibility AGP 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0 AGP 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0 AGP 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0 AGP 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0 AGP 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0 AGP 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0 AGP 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0

    To get the low-down on the GeForce FX 5600, we got hold the top of the line GeForce FX 5600 graphics card from MSI, so read on if you should be considering one of these lower priced mid-range graphics cards in your next system or replacing your aging graphics card.

    The MSI FX5600-VTDR128 box design.

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