If you don’t have $300 to spend on a GPU, then there are a slew of budget cards for you to ponder over. Last week we took a look at an X1650 Pro, and today we are taking a look at a similar model. Is the card worth your $150?
Let’s face it. Not everyone wants, or even needs to pay $300 or more for a graphics card. There are still many today who game on 1024×768, so a larger card is almost like throwing your money away. Last week we took a look at PowerColors X1650 Pro and earlier this year we also took their X1600XT for a spin. Both cards impressed us, but were not amazing. Amazing is not a word you usually throw around with a budget card, though.
Today I am taking a look at ASUS’ recently released EAX1650XT, which includes 256MB of GDDR3. What this card offers is a 574MHz (yes its really 574) core and 1.35GHz memory. We have a 128-Bit memory interface so we already have an idea of what we are dealing with. The card includes 24 Pixel Pipelines and supports up to 2048×1536 resolution.
The NVIDIA equivalent of this card would have to be the 7600GT, which costs a little more but has similar specs. I don’t have a 7600GT on hand though, sadly, in order to compare both cards directly.
Even though this is a budget card, Crossfire capabilities are still there. In the future should you want a boost in performance, you can simply throw another X1650XT in your rig. Before we jump into a physical look at the card, here are a few quick specifications:
The box that the card comes in is far smaller that the majority out there… it’s just large enough for the card and the extras. Compared to the Goliath of the box that came with the previously reviewed 7950GT, this was a breath of fresh air!
The card includes a bundle game, GTI Racing. This game features Volkswagen, and only Volkswagen. Solid title overall and is a nice bonus. The other extra is the leather-like ASUS branded CD holder. Also pictured is the driver CD-Rom, S-Video cable, Molex to PCI-E power converter, DVI to VGA adapter and also the two required bridges needed for Crossfire.
Despite being a budget card, this one looks great. Bright red as is the norm, with a modest cooler. ASUS has been making it a habit to include a brushed aluminum look with all their products lately, and this one did not escape their grasp. Overall a nice looking card.
Dual DVI-I outputs.
The cooler includes a copper heatsink with many fins as you can see. The fan has the job of blowing the hot air in this direction. This is not the best cooling solution out there, as the hot air doesn’t really go anywhere after being pushed away.
There is not much going on in the back of the card. A simple plastic brace and four screws holds the cooler in place.
Enough of the card itself, let’s move onto some benchmarking.