IntroductionDo you want the fastest single-card consumer 3D graphics product on the market at the time of writing (it's 11th April 2006 as I tap this out) ? Do you, sir? Do you? Ohh! Suits you, sir! Suits you! Do you have the money, sir? Do you, sir? Then sir wants a Radeon X1900 XTX doesn't he? Ohh!
Them upstairs shoot me if I give the game away on the first page, but if you don't tell them, I won't. That cool? Gooooood.
You see all Radeon X1900 XTXs are the same, made in the same factory by the same company. They ship with the same memory, the same binned GPU capable of steady XTX clocks, same output connector, same PCB. All the current lot that sell Radeon X1900 XTX have to differentiate themselves are the BIOS (to set faster clocks if they dare!), cooler changes and the bundle which accompanies it. Oh, and let's not forget price. But if sir wants Radeon X1900 XTX, sir likely isn't worried too much about that detail.
Thing is, hilariously for you and somewhat tedious for your author, none of them really do anything with those changeables. Doh. So your choices are something exotic like the Sapphire Blizzard Radeon X1900 XTX which eschews air-cooling for something a bit wetter, for mo' money. Or you wade through the tedium of samey vendor examples from companies that ought to make the effort for those spending the big bucks. C'est la vie!
Or you could just read the rest of this article and let me do the wading for you. Those upstairs called upon the gods of product sampling on your behalf so that I could suffer and tell you which one deserves your money. I've done just that, and I have a conclusion. We grabbed Radeon X1900 XTXs from Celestica - sorry, GeCube, ASUS, Sapphire and MSI - and ran them through the mill. So if sir is feeling fat of wallet and sir would like to slim it down on something fast and red, sir should read on for a look at the X1900 XTX AIBs from those four.
We start with GeCube.