Are you game?
For those who fight dull-boy syndrome with 3D games, the G450's performance in CNET Labs' tests is mixed. It didn't score as well as competing cards in high-resolution 3D tests, but low-resolution gaming was a different story; the G450's Quake III rate of 57 frames per second (fps) at 800 by 600 resolution was actually better than the Radeon VE's 46.8 fps, though the Matrox still paled in comparison to the GeForce2 MX-based card from Asus. However, 3D gaming performance is of little significance to most professionals and doesn't affect this product's highly competent dual-display abilities.
The G450 carries a three-year warranty. Its generous software bundle includes Micrografx's Simply3D design package and Picture Publisher 8, plus a software DVD player. Tech support is available weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET, but it's a toll call. Online support includes driver updates, FAQs and some helpful tech-support forums.
A wide range of professionals will enjoy the G450's dual-display support and marvelous 2D performance, and mainstream users who want to output DVD movies from PC to TV will be equally thrilled. The card's lack of a DVI output affects only those with a digital flat-panel display.