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ECS AG400 SiS Xabre 400 Videocard Review

ECS AG400 SiS Xabre 400 Videocard Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: When SIS recently announced the Xabre line of Graphics chipsets the hardware community greated the news with some skepticism.
 89% Rating:   
Filed under: Video Cards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: ECS Jul 22 2002   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Video Cards > ECS AG400

Problem & Overclocking Issues

As you'll see in the upcoming benchmarks the Xabre 400 is fast, but it also had a few problems. It would run both AquaMark and CodeCreatures benchmarks however there were artifacts on the screen or other abnormalities. We asked SIS about these issues, but haven't heard any definite answer back yet.

The main menu screen of AquaMark would display some unusual black horizontal lines that made reading text on the screen difficult, but when the program was actually benchmarking the image looked fine. The problems with CodeCreatures were more severe. While the benchmark was running, the mountains were white for the entire test and the river was a blue-grey colour. The butterflies has boxes for wings and the text on the screen was very fuzzy.

We didn't have any visual problems with the Xabre 400 in 3DMark2001SE, but it caused the test system to reboot spontaneously a few times during the Dragothic demo. And not that it affects performance much, but we were not able to get the Xabre 400 to run in 4x AGP mode on the test Epox 8K3A+ no matter what we tried. Different drivers, BIOS settings nothing would make it run at 4x AGP.


Handy Feature that tells us the AGP Transfer rates...

The last problem I had is a little embarrassing. I couldn't find the out how turn on Anti Alaising! Looking at the Xabre website, we see that they openly talk about "Jitter-Free AA" but I was unable to find a place to turn it on. If you know, please drop me a line (and be kind, I looked and looked).

Overclocking:

We ran into another hitch when it came to overclocking. Since the ECS and Xabre reference drivers don't come with any overclocking options and Powerstrip doesn't recognize the 'GPU', we were unable to overclock the videocard.

We can note however that during testing the back of the PCB wasn't hot at all, so heat shouldn't be a problem for the chipset. With the memory running at 500 MHz it did get quite warm during testing and we were a bit surprised that ECS didn't put RAMsinks on the memory to help keep them cool!

Since the EtronTech DRAM is rated at 3.3 ns, it should have no problems going up to at least 606 MHz if a suitable application becomes available.

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Contents of Article: ECS AG400
 Pg 1.  ECS AG400 SiS Xabre 400 Videocard Review
 Pg 2.  — Problem & Overclocking Issues
 Pg 3.  Benchmarks: 3DMark2001SE
 Pg 4.  Benchmarks: AquaMark 2.3
 Pg 5.  Benchmarks: CodeCreatures
 Pg 6.  Benchmarks: Comanche 4
 Pg 7.  Benchmarks: QIII Arena
 Pg 8.  Image quality
 Pg 9.  Conclusions

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   12 / 18 / 2017 | 3:51AM
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