XFX 6800GS SLI Video Card Review :: Introduction

11-29-2005 · Category: Hardware - Video Cards

By Benjamin Sun

The high-end video card market is dominated by two companies, NVIDIA and ATI. There is a market for $499 MSRP video cards and many enthusiasts purchase cards as soon as they come available (note the selling out of X1800XT and 7800GTX 512MB cards as soon as they hit Newegg.) In my opinion, however, $500+ video cards are a little nuts for the average user.

Mainstream computers are being sold for under $1000 today from the major OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturers) like Dell and Gateway. These consumers are likely to be looking to upgrade the video from the integrated Intel or perhaps a ATI X300 to something better without breaking the wallet. Further, the market for under $200 video cards make up more than 60% of the total market for standalone video cards.

NVIDIA has a strong history of excellent video cards for the mainstream performance market (~$199). The first NVIDIA card I ever owned was a Diamond Multimedia Viper 550 based upon NVIDIA's TNT chipset. Later cards in this category with excellent price to performance ratio include the GeForce3 Ti200, the GeForce4 Ti4200, the GeForce 6600GT and today the 6800GS.

XFX is a division of Pine Technologies Incorporated, a company based in Hong Kong. Pine was founded in 1989 and manufactures computer components including digital audio and video devices and computer peripherals. XFX was founded a few years ago and manufactures video cards based upon NVIDIA based chipsets and headsets, hard drive controllers. Today I'm reviewing two XFX 6800GS cards in single and SLI mode.