Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX (256MB) review: Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX (256MB)

If you find that a single GeForce 7800 GTX card doesn't give you enough performance, you can always buy two. The standard card comes SLI capable, although the same rules apply: you must connect cards of the identical make and model. The GeForce 7800 GTX is also dual-DVI capable, so you can output to two LCD monitors. The card can also aid in displaying HD video content up to 1080i.

The Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX still has a few kinks to work out. In order to streamline game settings, the driver software includes settings profiles for a number of games. Problem is, on the two different test PCs using Intel 900-series chipsets, half of the profiles didn't show up. They appeared fine on our AMD 939-chipset test machine, but it seems that Nvidia's driver software still has a bug or two. To the card's credit, it performed well despite the beta drivers.

News.com has reported that Nvidia will announce GT and Standard versions of 7800-series chip, and we anticipate that midrange and budget versions are imminent as well. Further, ATI is also set to debut its new graphics chip, code-named R520, reportedly at the end of July. It might not hurt to wait and see what ATI has to offer, but if you have to have the highest-end graphics right away, at this point we can make no other recommendation than the Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX.

Doom 3 custom demo (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,600x1,200 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
1,280x1,024 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
1,024x768 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX
50.1 
68.4 
99.3 

Far Cry custom demo (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,600x1,200 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
1,280x1,024 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
1,024x768 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX
59 
77.2 
106.5 
ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum Edition
65.2 
84.2 
105.5 

Half-Life 2 custom demo (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,600x1,200 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
1,280x1,024 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
1,024x768 with 4X antialiasing and 8X anisotropic filtering  
Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX
81.9 
101.5 
121.4 

ATI driver: Catalyst 5.6 (WHQL)

Nvidia driver: ForceWare 77.62 (beta)

Find out more about how we test graphics cards.

Graphics test bed configuration:
2.6GHz AMD Athlon 64 FX-55 CPU; 1,024MB DDR SDRAM running at 400MHz; Asus A8N SLI Deluxe motherboard; Nvidia Nforce 4 Ultra-SLI chipset; Western Digital 74GB WDC WD740GD-00FLX0 SATA hard drive; Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP2

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    Where to Buy

    Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX (256MB)

    Part Number: SPPX70XVH/256 Released: Jun. 22, 2005

    Please check here for a list of retail cards.

    Quick Specifications See All

    • Release date Jun. 22, 2005
    • Interface Type PCI Express x16
    • Max Monitors Supported 2
    • Size 256 MB
    • Compatibility PC
    About The Author

    Rich Brown is an executive editor for CNET Reviews. He has worked as a technology journalist since 1994.