XGI Technology Volari 8300
Ending off this article, we have some additional hardware specifications to share for the Volari 8300 until we perform our own in-house testing upon the arrival of our samples. As mentioned previously, the GPU core is made using a 130nm process but its fabrication is done by UMC and uses PBGA packaging. The transistor count for XGI's latest count amounts to just a little more over 90 million, which is substantially less than the NVIDIA 7800GTX that packs in over 300M! For reference, the NVIDIA 5700 Ultra featured nearly 82 million transistors. Theoretically, the Volari 8300 (300MHz) will have a pixel fill-rate of 600M pixels/sec, texture fill-rate of 1200M texels/sec, and Z/Stencil fill-rate of 1200M samples/sec. The onboard 300MHz DDR memory bus width continues to be 64-bit in 2 x 32-bit channels. Finally, the onboard memory is DDR1 2.8ns modules.
Although the Volari 8300 may sound appealing on paper for the value-ended casual gamer and especially video junkies, we will need to wait until our samples arrive (which unfortunately didn't arrive on time) before we can draw any decisive conclusion as to XGI's next generation GPUs. Although it may sound horrid that XGI's flagship product may perform like a NVIDIA 6200 or ATI X300SE, the Volari 8300 may make a special niche for consumers when it comes to servers, notebooks, and especially home-theatre users. XGI engineers believe the video processing capabilities of their latest product supercede that of NVIDIA's PureVideo as important features such as 3:2 Pulldown bad-edit correction and inverse telecine were removed from that technology. Not only will this low-wattage GPU make it possible to have a reliable video system while sticking to passive cooling, but also if everything turns out the XG47 may be a fabulous overclocker and we will be sure to overclock the unit as well as studying possible software/hardware modifications to the unit upon its arrival. For those not interested in HDTV or DVD playback, we haven't received any updates on the status of the XGI Volari 8600 series but we hope that it will arrive to the market in Q1/Q2 of 2006. At the time of writing, we haven't received any official pricing for the Volari 8300 PCI-E part but the NVIDIA 6200TC and ATI X300SE Hyper Memory presently sell for roughly $50+ USD. Currently, XGI Technology is collaborating with ASI Corp, Chaintech, Club 3D, D&H, and Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS) so you can expect to see some of their partners distributing XG47 variants in the near future as well.
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