AXLE recently launched new Geforce graphics cards based on a 40nm core – the GT210, GT220 and GT240. Of course, these are mostly lower-end cards aimed at the sub-€90 market. Thanks to a friend of ours, Nelson Fung, we managed to get our hands on the GT240 512MB and GT220 1024MB and we decided to take these cards out for a spin. Performance-wise, the GT220 should succeed the Geforce 9500 family whereas the faster GT240 should come in place of the Geforce 9600.
The picture above shows the GT240 (left) and the GT220 (right), both with non-reference dual-slot cooling.
Left 4 Dead shows that AXLE GT240 and AXLE GT220 are doing pretty well at 1280x1024, and depending on detail settings you might even push it to 1680x1024. Note that Gainward's GT240 and GT220 cards are overclocked, which results in slight performance advantage over AXLE's offer. On the other hand, overclocking will also result in higher consumption and maybe most importantly – higher pricing.
With Ultra High detail settings, Far Cry 2 is too tough a nut for the GT220 to crack, but if you lower the aforementioned settings, smooth gaming shouldn't be a problem.
Throughout gaming tests, as well as 3DMark 06 testing, it's evident that these cards don't bring much better performance compared to the cards they're supposed to succeed, but performance isn't everything in this case. Notably, these new cards bring lower consumption, DirectX 10.1 support, improved high-def video and audio routing which no longer requires additional connectors, etc.
AXLE Geforce GT220 cards we've recieved comes with 1GB of GDDR3 memory and runs at reference clocks. So, the GPU runs at 625MHz , shaders at 1360MHz and the memory at 790Mhz. The card is priced at about €50.
The AXLE GT240's GPU runs at 550MHz reference clocks (which apply to the 32 texture filtering and 8 ROP units as well) and shader clocks of 1340MHz. Reference clocks on the 512MB of GDDR5 memory are at 1700MHz and the card goes for about €70.
Stay tuned, as we'll publish the full review soon.