Product: 9800GX2 Quad SLI
Company: nVIDIA
Authour: ChrisRay
Editor: Charles 'Lupine' Oliver
Date: March 25th, 2008
Conclusion

nVidia 9800 GX2 Quad SLI
nVidia 9800 GX2 Quad SLI

8800GTX Tri SLI verses 9800GX2 Quad SLI

The 9800 GX2 Quad SLI configuration held the advantage in most situations, and in those situations the advantage was considerable. There were certain scenarios where 8800 GTX Tri SLI was able to outperform the 9800 GX2 Quad configuration, the most notable being Crysis with shadow volumes at high. However the victory loses meaning when the results were unplayable. There were also some situations where the 9800 GX2 Quad SLI and 8800 GTX Tri SLI washed for performance such as Oblivion and Serious Sam 2. However both systems were able provide a solid gaming experience.

9800 GX2 Pros

  • Consistently higher or equal performance than 8800 GTX Tri SLI
  • Significantly less heat and thermal management than 8800 GTX Tri SLI
  • Wider range of chipset support. 8800 GTX tri SLI requires a TRI SLI capable motherboard
  • Lower Power requirements. The 8800 GTX Tri SLI requires a 1.1KW PSU vs. the 9800 GX2 Quad SLI configuration requirement of under 900W.
  • Advanced PureVideo Tech for a better HD video experience.


8800GTX Tri SLI Pros

  • An Additional 256 megs of available framebuffer, which in some scenarios can provide a benefit.
  • Only requires 6 pin power connectors.


Conclusion

With the advancements to Nway and AFR scaling under Vista, the Geforce 9800 GX2 Quad SLI system is a force to be reckoned with and is able to provide the most consistent performance and gaming experience yet encountered. Quad SLI scaling is no longer hit and miss like it was back in the days of the 7950 GX2 and, unlike Tri SLI, thermal management shouldn't be as much of a concern using this setup. With SLI compatibility with any Nforce SLI capable board on the market, many more users will have the option to experience 9800 GX2 Quad SLI performance. With Nway providing a more consistent scaling experience, the 9800 GX2 is able to stand on its own and as an SLI solution.

9800 GX2 Quad SLI remains an expensive solution, the most expensive currently available. But with that expense comes the ability to use your High Definition displays at playable performance and immediate results in most applications. And those finding themselves CPU limited can enable the hidden Quad SLIAA routines in the drivers from the 7950 GX2 days that to provide a completely different experience.

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