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XGI Volari 8300 Graphics Card Review
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XGI Volari 8300 Graphics Card

The new XGI Volari 8300 has all the makings of a good entry-level card with its minimalist approach to everything. Cost should be very low, thanks to its simple PCB design, narrow memory interface and support for only cheap DDR memory.

XGI is targeting this card, not at 3D graphics enthusiasts, but rather at the home entertainment market. Hence, they are touting the Volari 8300's superior DVD playback quality and its ability to run without a fan for total silence. Those would be significant advantages for users who are looking for a cheap graphics card to power their home entertainment PCs.

Of course, the actual card, as we have seen, comes with a small fan. We wonder if the Volari 8300 could actually work well without a fan. Still, the acoustic impact of the fan should be very minimal. It really is a very small fan.

As far as its performance in 3D graphics is concerned, it's definitely NOT a selling point. You can just barely play games like Doom 3 if you use only the lowest resolutions and graphics details. Playing graphics-intensive games like F.E.A.R., unfortunately, are out of the question.

Its only saving grace, as far as graphics is concerned, is its DVD playback quality. As XGI claimed, it is truly superior to what NVIDIA and ATI can offer. Even expensive cards like the GeForce 6800 GT had comparatively poorer anti-aliasing. On the other hand, we did note some jerkiness, which may detract from its anti-aliasing quality.

In conclusion, the XGI Volari 8300 will best serve as a cheap graphics card for use in entry-level HTPCs where its comparatively superior anti-aliasing will be an advantage. It will also work great for business PCs, especially if the price is really low. But if you intend to play 3D graphics-intensive games, even low-end cards like the ATI Radeon X300 are far superior solutions.

For more details, read our Comprehensive Review!

MSRP

• NA

Lowest PriceGrabber Price

• NA

Review

Comprehensive Review

Architecture

NA

Manufacturing Process

• 0.13 Micron

Transistor Count

• NA

DirectX Support

9.0b

Interface

PCI Express

Vertex Pipelines

2

Vertex Shader Version

2.0 Extended

Pixel / Texture Pipelines

• 8 x 2

Pixel Shader Version

• 2.0 Extended

Core Speed

• 300 MHz

Fill Rate

• 4800 MTexels/s

Memory Bus Width

64-bits

Memory Type

• DDR

Memory Speed

• 350 MHz (700 MHz DDR)

Memory Bandwidth

• 5.6 GB/s

TruShader™ SE Graphics Engine

• Hierarchical pixel tiling for page based rendering
• 2x2 pixel pipelines and 4 independent Pixel Shaders
• 2 pixels/clock with 8 texel/pixel
• Texture size up to 8Kx8K and non-power of 2
• Bi-linear, tri-linear and anisotropic texture filtering
• High order texture filtering up to 8x8 kernel
• Linear sRGB color format
• MET and MRT
• Floating color buffer (up to 32 bit)
• Floating texture formats (up to 32 bit)
• Full anti-aliasing support for texts, lines, scenes
• Special multi-resolution depth buffer
• Special bandwidth reduction hardware via compression
• Multi-level caches
• Fully OpenGL-compliant blending including fog & depth cueing

CoolPower™ II

• Unified software & hardware architecture for power management
• Dynamic clock gating, frequency scaling, work load balancing
• Supports INTEL-defined Device Performance States (DPS)
• Supports PCI Express Active State Power Management (ASPM)
• Optional battery optimizer under user control

TrueVideo™ Engine

• State-of-the-art pixel based motion and edge adaptive de-interlace
• Inverse 3:2 pull down
• Motion and object based adaptive edge smoothing
• Overdrive technology for Ultra Clear TFT LCD image quality
• Supports HDTV resolution up to 1280x720p
• Provides cubical interpolation with edge recovery

Output Displays

• Three simultaneous outputs: CRT, DVI and TV out
• Integrated TMDS for interface to DVI up to 1600x1200
• Integrated NTSC/PAL encoder up to 1024x768
• 350 MHz RAMDAC for CRT up to 2048x1536
• 90° and 180° HW rotation support

Graphics Standards

• MICROSOFT® graphics standard for Windows® XP and 2000
• DX9.0 Vertex Shader 2.0 Extended and Pixel Shader 2.0
• DX9.0c software compatible
• OpenGL 1.5 compatible

 

* Our New Review System

ARP is committed to developing new ways to improve your experience with us. As part of our continuous efforts to improve the value of our reviews to you, we are implementing a new review system.

This new review system is designed to allow you to quickly receive information on the latest hardware. This new system also allows you to quickly get the gist of the review without reading through it. This can be very useful, especially in situations where you need to make a quick purchase decision.

In this new system, we start with a Product Overview whenever a company sends us a press release about their latest product. We shift through extraneous PR-talk to create a straightforward summary of the product's features as well as its specifications. This allows you to quickly find out all the pertinent details about the product, without reading through official press releases.

When we receive the product for review, we will quickly take photos of it and create a Pictorial Review. The purpose of a pictorial review is to allow you, the reader, to quickly examine the product visually. It may help you make better purchase decisions, especially if you cannot wait for the full review.

After thorough testing, we will post a Comprehensive Review of the product. This adds on to the pictorial review with comprehensive test results and our final conclusion on the product.

But no matter whether you are reading a Pictorial Review or a Comprehensive Review, you can always read the summary of the review as well as examine the product's specifications right on the first page. In all our new reviews, we will maintain the first page as a Product Overview page. If the product is listed in PriceGrabber, you can also check out the lowest price online.

We hope this new review system will make your experience a lot more enjoyable and informative!



 

 
   
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