As the official benchmarks for Intel's new Core 2 processors hit the web, the buzz in recent weeks among hardware enthusiasts has been about the chip giant's return to form. Having tested the new processors ourselves , we can assert that there is no doubt Intel has reclaimed the performance and efficiency crown in one fell swoop with these new processors. With AMD poised to fall back to its tried and tested strategy of price competition with a scheduled round of price cuts, we anticipate an upcoming buying spree from consumers who have been holding off their purchases for Core 2.
For those aiming for a new system or even upgrading their processors, the graphics card potentially eats up most of the budget unless one is a casual gamer. In fact, in some cases, it may make more sense to upgrade the graphics card over the processor. As the last section of this article shows, the gaming performance gains from further upgrading the processor may be limited if the graphics card is the bottleneck. Instead, as most enthusiasts should have recognized by now, a balanced system is necessary to ensure that some subsystems are not idling due to bottlenecks. Hence, while you're looking at the CPUs, spare some of the budget for upgrading your graphics card accordingly.
This brings us to today's review, where we will be showing you a high-end graphics card to complement that shiny new CPU. This is none other a Radeon X1900 XTX from HIS, featuring an updated version of its well-known IceQ cooler. NVIDIA's more potent dual GPU GeForce 7950 GX2 has overshadowed ATI's high-end flagship in recent times but HIS has not only claimed to have improved its cooler, the unit we received from them also has its trademark iTurbo overclocking tool. With this software application, the HIS card can be overclocked simply and the best thing is it's all covered under the warranty when used appropriately. So without further ado, let's see if this new HIS cooler lives up to the name built by its predecessors and more importantly, can this super clocked Radeon X1900 XTX upset the green turf.