IntroductionA couple of days ago we previewed the EVGA e-GeForce 7800 GTX BlackPearl 512MB. Gunning for the twin crowns of World's Most Expensive Consumer Graphics Card and World's Fastest Consumer Graphics Card at the same time, the watercooled GeForce 7800 GTX 512, initially, only fails to impress in the world of pennies and pounds. The USD$1000 required to secure yourself one is fairly ridiculous. Hell, even the basic aircooled board's MSRP of USD$649 is wallet-shaggingly massive, and that dollar price is singularly failing to translate into an exchange-rate-friendly £375.
Somewhere north of £500 is the norm over here in Blighty, should you be well heeled and lost of mind. Of course, you're buying the fastest graphics hardware yet released, as our preview showed. Even so, someone needs to tether the pixel pony a bit better, lest it run round the money field eating all your hard-earned. Further, I promise that a reduction in graphics card pricing at the high end will also stop me writing such tenuous toss.
However, we've also found out recently that, regardless of price, there is a market, however small, for boutique bits of PC hardware. The ASUS Extreme N7800GT Dual is one such bit of high-end, very rare, very expensive PC hardware that springs to mind.
The EVGA e-GeForce 7800 GTX BlackPearl 512MB is from a similar mould. With a production run of way less than the 2000 N7800GT Duals destined for retail sale, the watercooled BlackPearl is even less attractive to many people because of it. We had a quick look at performance in our preview, so now it's time to see if the BlackPearl, with its high price and off-putting watercooling, is still a decent proposition to those who like to spend money the way I like to eat pies.