XFX GeForce GT 240 Video card Review :: Features

11-19-2009 · Category: Hardware - Video Cards

By Benjamin Sun
  • NVIDIA Unified Architecture
  • NVIDIA CUDA Technology
  • NVIDIA PhysX Technology
  • NVIDIA 3D Vision Support
  • Microsoft Windows 7 Support
  • DirectCompute Support
  • OpenCL Support
  • PCI Express 2.0 Support
  • GigaThread Technology
  • NVIDIA Lumenex Engine
  • 16x Anti-aliasing Technology
  • 128-bit floating point High Dynamic Range (HDR) Lighting
  • NVIDIA Unified Driver Architecture (UDA)
  • OpenGL 3.2 Optimization and Support
  • Dual 400MHz RAMDACs
  • Dual-link DVI Support
  • HDMI 1.3a Support
  • NVIDIA PureVideo HD Technology
  • Hardware Decode Acceleration
  • Dynamic Contrast Enhancement and Color Stretch
  • Dual-link HDCP Capable
  • Enhanced Error Resilience
  • Advanced Spatial-Temporal De-Interlacing
  • High Quality Scaling
  • Inverse Telecine (3:2 & 2:2 Pull-down corrective)
  • Bad Edit Correction
  • Noise Reduction
  • Edge Enhancement
  • Microsoft DirectX 10.1 Support
  • Shader Model 4.1 support
  • 550MHz core clock
  • 1700MHz GDDR5 memory
  • 128-bit memory
  • 727 Million transistors
  • 54.4GB/second memory bandwidth.
Brand Name XFX
Graphics Chip GT215
Clock speed 550MHz
Shader Clock 1340MHz
SPs 96
Fabrication Process 40nm
Transistors 727 Million
Memory clock 1700MHz
Memory bus 128-bit
Memory bandwidth 54.4GB/second
Memory Size 512MB
ROPs 8
Texture Filtering Units 32
Texture Filtering Rate 17.6 Gigatexels/second
HDCP Support Yes
HDMI Support Yes
Connectors DVI, HDMI,D-Sub
Bus PCI Express 2.0
Form Factor Dual Slot
Power Connectors N/A

The XFX GeForce GT 240 512MMB DDR5 HDMI is based upon NVIDIA’s GT215 chip which was first seen in the mobile space on the GeForce GT260M and GT250M. These mobile chips were NVIDIA’s first to be manufactured on TSMC’s 40nm process. The desktop version of the GT240 is launching today with 727 million transistors on a 139mm2 die.

The GT 240 has 96 Stream Processors. If that number if familiar, it is because that is the same number of processors that the 9600GT which this card is replacing sported. The number of ROPS is the same as that of the GT 220 at 8, but the number of texture units on the chip has doubled from 16 to the 32 on the GT 240. In many ways the GT 240 is double a GT 220 in those terms, whether that will translate into increased performance from a slower core clock we will have to see.

The GT 240 is the first NVIDIA card to use GDDR5 memory on a 128-bit memory bus. ATI released their first GDDR5 card in the form of the Radeon HD 4870 in 2008, but this is the first NVIDIA card to use the new memory. GDDR5 memory doubles the memory bandwidth of the card compared to GDDR3 memory, meaning that the 128-bit 1700MHz memory provides a 54.4GB/second memory bandwidth to the GT240 card. This is far better than the memory bandwidth of the GT220.

The main features added to the GT 240 from the GT 200 core that the card came from is the addition of DirectX 10.1 features. NVIDIA’s GeForce 8800GTX was the first card to support DirectX 10 and Shader Model 4.0. With the advent of the GT 210, 220 and 240, NVIDIA has moved to supporting the same features as found on their competition from a year ago in the form of DirectX 10.1. DirectX 10.1 introduces enhancements to FSAA including requiring 32-bit precision on all operations, parallel cube mapping and updated hardware. The GT 240 fully supports DirectX 10.1, bringing up to par with the ATI HD 4xxx series of cards in feature support.

Game physics has always been important in games. Remember the first time you used the Gravity Gun in Half Life 2? A small company called Ageia developed a new API called PhysX which was both a hardware and software solution. Game developers began taking advantage of PhysX in their games, but it wasn’t until NVIDIA bought Ageia that game physics really took off. The problem was that the installed base of PhysX cards on the market was in the tens of thousands, which meant that the hardware support for the standards was not present. NVIDIA soon released drivers for PhysX that enabled PhysX effects on NVIDIA cards bringing an instant install base of millions of cards. PhysX allows features like realistic smoke, fog, destructible environments, debris and more to happen. Games like Batman Arkham Asylum, Mirror’s Edge and Darkest of Days use PhysX throughout.