Zotac GeForce 8500 GT Review 1

Zotac GeForce 8500 GT Review

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Value and Conclusion

  • For a mere $99 you can get the Zotac GeForce 8500 GT which has quite a performance lead over the regular GeForce 8500 GT reference design.
  • Good price / performance
  • Factory overclocked with full warranty
  • SLI Support
  • Supports all new G86 features like accelerated H.264 decode
  • Low power consumption
  • Minor upgrade to GeForce 7 Series
  • New ATI products out soon that compete with it
  • Active cooling fan
Even though the model number 8500 sounds much bigger than 7300, the GeForce 8500 GT is only a very minor upgrade to the GeForce 7 Series. I would say it mainly adds new features like Shader Model 4.0 and support for accelerated HD video decoding.
When comparing the GeForce 8500 GT to the GeForce 7300 GT we see a 10% performance increase, which is much less than everybody expected. However, if you are looking into building a Media PC system or plan on sticking with Vista this card seems to be a viable choice because of the added features, especially for the small price premium.
For an added $10 over the NVIDIA reference boards you get a higher core clock which gives you a very healthy performance boost in games. As casual gamer this card will deliver playable frame rates up to resolutions of 1280x1024, especially when you are willing to sacrifice some details in-game.
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