ASUS EN8600GT OC Gear 256MB Review
By Vince Freeman :
December 11, 2007
Overclocking Results and Performance
As the ASUS EN8600GT 256MB card offers real-time overclocking and monitoring through the OC Gear hardware, it's only logical that we cover its overclocking capabilities. Our first task was to try and determine the upper limits of the ASUS EN8600GT using the SmartDoctor utility, So we slapped the OC Gear hardware into our reference case, and set off to test its overclocking. The ASUS OC Gear hardware is only capable of controlling the core speed, so we had to manually select and test the memory clock.
We pushed the memory bar right to the end, hitting a max of 2.0 GHz, and were a bit surprised when the card was rock-solid through all testing. While ASUS has promoted the card's "fastest -1 memory onboard" overclocking capabilities, we did not expect GeForce 8600 GTS-level memory speeds. We also maxed out the core speeds at 700 MHz, but after some extensive testing, there was some texture corruption, and we finally settled on 685 MHz - 10 MHz higher than a standard GeForce 8600 GTS. Keep in mind that this test involved a sample size of one, and individual results can definitely vary.
Due to the close proximity of the ASUS EN8600GT overclock to the standard GeForce 8600 GTS, overall benchmark results are going to be extremely close, so we decided to outline the potential performance benefits of the increase. The following charts offer a view of how the increased core and memory speeds affect game performance, and the results are given in a "percentage increase compared to standard clock speeds" format, rather than raw data.
First up we have a series of benchmarks (F.E.A.R., Company of Heroes, FarCry, Quake 4, and Crysis) tested at 1600x1200 using standard detail settings. F.E.A.R. shows a serious framerate gain, just as it does in our main benchmarking, while many of the other games display basic increases. Crysis is a bit different, and shows less than a 4% performance jump.
The next chart offers benchmarks of the same game selection, but this time at 1920x1200 using 4X anti-aliasing and 16X anisotropic filtering. The majority of game tests show diminishing returns at this level, but Quake 4 shows a huge jump, and Crysis gets back in line with a more standard score.