iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail







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Card design

The card has AGP X2/4/8 interface, 128MB DDR SDRAM in 8 chips on both PCB sides.

Samsung K4D26323RA-GC2A memory chips, BGA form-factor. Up to 350 (700) MHz; hence the access time of 2.8 ns. By default the memory works at 340 (680) MHz, the chip at 380 MHz.

The memory is the same as on RADEON 9700 PRO.


The memory speedup caused the PCB redesigning; the differences from RADEON 9700 PRO are well seen.

The cooler is different as well.

Who suggested the idea of such a parallelepiped shape? I think that the idea of a silvery heatsink is bright but such an odd shape... Note that the heatsink is attached to the chip with thermal glue instead of a sticker like in RADEON 9700 PRO.

Besides, the heatsink has a small jutter on the bottom.

When we examined RADEON 9700 PRO we noticed that on many cards the die was lower than the protection frame surrounding the chip. And one day we took off the frame so that the heatsink could be better pressed to the die.

RADEON 9800 PRO doesn't have such problem:

The heatsink presses tightly to the die with its jutting part. However, its surface is poorly processed, which is unacceptable for chips with an open die.

The die is of the same size as of R300, but it has a different mount which makes it mirror-like. The package is the same -- FCPGA.

The external power connector is replaced with another one, probably because there was a lot of criticism about the fragile connector similar to floppy drive. That is why RADEON 9800 PRO houses a more massive socket for a power cable similar to one used for drives (HDD, CDD-ROM).

TV-out doesn't differ from that on RADEON 9700 PRO. See Andrei Karpenko's review about operation of this function.

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