XFX Geforce 8500GT Fatal1ty Video Card Review

Videocards/VGA Reviews by geoffrey @ 2007-12-24

The XFX Fatal1ty series have recently not only been upgraded in the mainstream segment, since few weeks we have now Fatal1ty entry-level graphics cards. Aimed at the professional gaming market, could we have a Best Buy in our hands?

  • prev
  • next

Test setup, Benchmark methodology & Overclocking

Test setup

Geoffreys' Test Setup
Madshrimps (c)
CPUIntel E6600 @ 3GHz
CoolingZalman 9700 LED
MainbordAbit Fatal1ty FP-IN9 SLI
Memory2x1Gb TEAMGROUP Xtreem 800MHz 4-4-4-10-35-4-10-10-10-2T
  • XFX Fatal1ty 8500GT 512MB
  • Other
  • FSP Epsilon 900 PSU
  • Maxtor 80Gb PATA HDD
  • Seagate 200GB SATA HDD
  • Antec Nine Hundred housing
  • 20" Dell UltraSharp 2007FP TFT monitor

  • The Intel E6600 was being overclocked to 3GHz by changing the FSB from 266MHz to 333MHz and by keeping the multiplier at default (9). This way the CPU would score on par with the Intel E6850 based on the popular G0 stepping.
  • Teamgroup's pair of 1Gb DDR2 sticks were clocked to default settings via the NVIDIA 650i chipset.
  • ForceWare 169.02 drivers
  • While Windows Vista is now officially launched, we decided to test with a mature Windows OS (XP SP2).

    Benchmark methodology

    The game benchmarks were completed with the Fatal1ty 8500 GT clocked at default settings and down clocked to 8500 GT reference speed. We also tried the maximum stable overclock and added those results along with those mentioned above.

    All tests were done with a 20” LCD monitor with a maximum resolution of 1600*1200, though we found that 1024x768 was already stressing those VGA cards more than enough, AA and AF aren't very useful as those card just don't have enough rendering power to make good use of those options. We also had to tweak the video options in some games to make them play acceptable at 1024x768.

    With our following performance charts you will be informed at all time at what IQ settings were being used. FRAPS was used to measure the FPS during repeated manual run-throughs of a certain part of the games tested, the minimum, maximum and average values were recorded.

  • Battlefield 2
  • Unreal Tournament 2007
  • TES: Oblivion
  • Call of Duty 4
  • Colin McRae D.I.R.T.
  • Futuremark 3DMark Series

    Overclocking the 8500GT

    Much like any of the other Geforce 8 family members, the video card clock speeds are separated in 3 different domains which can all be easily overclocked by using Unwinder's Rivatuner overclocking tool. With the standard XFX clocks being only ~10% higher than NVIDIA's we'd expected quite some headroom, here is a table which let's you compare the three different clock settings:

    Madshrimps (c)

    Considering the passive cooling we managed to get quite astonishing results, compared to the defaults Fatal1ty settings our card got a 38% increase in GPU core clock speed and a 68% increase in GPU shader clock. The memory scaled less, 'only' 14% more, though with the 128 bit interface the GPU is feds quite well, no harm is done here.

    If we compare against reference 8500 GT value's, our GPU is clocked 53% higher in the core domain while the shader domain is clocked near 90% higher! Memory overclock fades compared to the GPU overclock, 22% higher clocks which is actually still pretty decent.
    • prev
    • next
    Comment from Massman @ 2007/12/24
    Good work, Geoff. The overclock seems to be worth it