New toys arrive in the Lab as frequently as political scandals erupt in Washington, D.C., a phenomenon that renders the Maximum PC staff a fickle, jaded bunch. But in the absence of any competition from AT—er, AMD—we remain intrigued by videocards based on Nvidia’s 8800 series GPUs. And so this month, we take a close look at EVGA’s e-GeForce 8800 GTS.
One of our favorite scenes in Pulp Fiction takes place when Samuel L. Jackson’s character, the ever-so-eloquent Jules Winnfield, describes the wonderful gourmet taste of his friend Jimmie’s coffee. Of course, Jules and his partner have just pulled up to Jimmie’s house with a body blasted all over the backseat of their car. But for the briefest of moments, nothing else mattered, save for the sweet flavor of something that wasn’t freeze-dried Taster’s Choice.
Corsair’s Flash Voyager isn’t the largest thumb drive around, but it sure is affordable, as well as speedy. In our tests, the Voyager ran away from all the others here in large-file transfers, and only Kingston’s drive could match it in medium-size JPG file copies.
Buffalo's original LinkStation network-storage device (reviewed September 2004) gave consumers an easy way to hang 120GB on their network without having to break the bank-if they were willing to live with the slow performance.
Nvidia’s first attempt at playing motherboard maker (with its AMD AM2 boards) was good, but there was definitely room for improvement. With the 680i, Nvidia gives the mobo game another go, and dives even deeper. Not content to just design boards, Nvidia is now manufacturing them too. These boards are in turn sold through partners, such as the EVGA board reviewed here.
We think we’re seeing a pretty solid pattern here. As is true of the Star Trek movies, it’s possible that only the even-numbered Nvidia chipsets are worth a damn. The original nForce was a beta product. The nForce2 was great. The nForce3 sucked eggs. The nForce4 SLI kicked much booty. And then there’s the nForce 590 SLI Intel Edition, which was hyped more than a David Blaine stunt, and might be just as anti-climactic. Originally scheduled for availability in August, boards using the laggard chipset didn’t appear until late October—just before boards using the newer nForce 680i were released. What’s the point?