Value and Conclusion
- Exact pricing of the ASUS GT 440 is unknown at this time, our estimate is USD 100.
- Overclocked out of the box
- Good overclocking potential
- Low power consumption in idle and Blu-ray
- Full size HDMI output
- Support for DirectX 11
- Support for CUDA / PhysX
- Low overall performance
- Noisy under load
- High power consumption in 3D
- Still limited to two active display outputs per card
- DirectX 11 relevance limited at this time
NVIDIA's GeForce GT 440 is not really a new kid on the block. It has been available for OEMs to use in their pre-assembled systems since fall last year. Last year's GT 440 OEM is a fundamentally different design than today's GeForce GT 440. Whereas GT 440 OEM was based on GF106 with 144 shaders, NVIDIA's new GT 440 uses GF108 with 96 shaders - essentially the same configuration as GeForce GT 430. The major difference between GT 430 and GT 440 is that GT 440 can be equipped with fast-running, but more expensive, GDDR5 memory.
The ASUS GT 440 that we have on our testbench today comes with 1 GB of GDDR5 which helps the card gain some performance compared to GT 430 GDDR3. Another improvement is that ASUS has overclocked the GPU out of the box to a frequency of 823 MHz. Overall this results in a 23% performance boost over GeForce GT 430, but also increases power consumption substantially. Where we saw 36 W under load on GT 430, GT 440 consumes 55 W. Power consumption in non-gaming states is still incredibly low with 7 W in idle at the desktop and 12 W when playing back Blu-ray content.
GeForce GT 440 is really not made for gaming, even though we see it manage 1024x768 at lower detail setting in older titles. If you are into 3D gaming then you should really look at GTS 450 which costs around $30 more but is 70% faster.
While an exact pricing is not available yet, our optimistic prediction is around the USD 100 mark, which means that the card is more expensive than AMD's HD 5670, that delivers 11% more performance. HD 5770 for $120 is even twice as fast. Until NVIDIA reduces the prices of their GT 440 and GT 430 substantially, I don't see it gaining any substantial market share.