Core Clock: 575MHz Memory Clock: 1800MHz Warranty: 2 years (parts and labour) Availability: Soon Price: around £350 including VAT
Foxconn is a relatively new name in the graphics industry, but the company is one of the largest (if not the largest) PC component manufacturers in the world. The first cards that the company released covered NVIDIA’s GeForce 7-series product stack in its entirety, right from GeForce 7950 GX2, all the way down to the bargain-basement GeForce 7100 GS.
Today we are looking at one of the company's recently-announced GeForce 8800-series video cards. It's known as the FV-N88SMBD2-ONOC, or for those that don't have a Foxconn product guide to hand, it's a pre-overclocked GeForce 8800 GTS that uses the same frequencies as the reference GeForce 8800 GTX clock speeds.
Obviously though, it doesn't have the additional stream processors, memory bandwidth and ROPs that are on the GeForce 8800 GTX. In saying that though, this still represents quite a large clock increase over the reference 500/1600MHz frequencies on NVIDIA's GeForce 8800 GTS. If you're unfamiliar with NVIDIA's GeForce 8800-series architecture, we recommend giving some of our previous GeForce 8800 series articles a read:
As far as we're aware, this wasn't the first-to-market pre-overclocked GeForce 8800-series cards, as that crown goes to XFX, who announced and started shipping pre-overclocked GTX and GTS cards before Christmas. We have those cards in-house, so watch out for a review in the very near future. Anyway, without further ado, let's have a look at Foxconn's pre-overclocked GeForce 8800 GTS.
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The box art is... different, to say the least; call it modern art if you will. There are puppets, stars, planets, umbrellas with eerie looking eyes – it’d be right at home in the solar system. Typically, Taiwanese companies love to cover their boxes in fantasy creatures and characters, so this is a welcome change in a strange but catching way. You’ll either love it or hate it, but I actually think it looks quite cool – it’s different, and a move away from what is considered “the norm” is good in my eyes.
Foxconn packs the card inside an anti-static bag, as you’d expect, and it’s secured in its own separate compartment in the box to prevent other things rattling around and damaging the card during shipping. The bundle is similar to BFGTech’s in that it comes with two DVI-to-VGA converters, a single 6-pin PCI-Express power adapter and an HDTV breakout box for component video connections.
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On the software front, Foxconn includes a CD containing VirtualDrive Pro 10 and RestoreIT 7, along with the standard driver/utility CD. Our sample is pretty early, and it’s highlighted by the fact that the driver CD is actually a CDR with no Foxconn artwork. Finally, the most interesting part of the bundle is the USB game pad that came as a bit of a surprise to me – it comes complete with both analogue and digital controls. Having used it for a bit of NFS: Carbon over the Christmas period, it’s a pretty good controller but unfortunately it will not be replacing my trusty wired Xbox 360 controller.
As expected, the card uses NVIDIA's reference cooler with a Foxconn sticker applied to the plastic cover. The sticker follows the same far-fetched, but cool design that's used in the box art, so if you like one, you'll like the other. Because the cooling solution is the same as NVIDIA's reference design, it's quiet and unobtrusive, even when you're really working the card hard in your favourite game.