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Nvidia 7900GT Signature series review

Nvidia's top midranger gets the amphetamine treatment...

The Signature series gets the job done a lot faster than the standard-issue version

So, 5,865 3DMarks in 3DMark06 then? That's more than an X1900XTX or 7900GTX can comfortably muster, and a colossal feat for a midrange card. This is what EVGA's premium Signature Series cards are all about: taking standard GPUs and clocking the chodders off both GPU and RAM, so much so that this midrange card can outperforming high-enders

Given the vanilla 7900GT's core and RAM normally run at a reasonably sedate 450/1,320MHz, and the Signature Series' twirl at 600/1,600MHz, it's not hard to see why. It gets the job done a lot faster than the standard-issue version, and that's what we're all after.

It's still a 7900GT at heart however, not a card known for it's ability to drive panels at high resolutions, so the grunt on offer here is most at home in a 1,280x1,024 environment. And here it excels - 120FPS in Half Life 2: Episode One and a healthy 85FPS in F.E.A.R. won't garner complaints from anyone.

EVGA also offers an upgrade program so that, within 90 days of purchase, if the card you bought isn't as grunty as you'd like, they'll give you a full refund towards a new, more powerful card, along with priority phone support if anything goes wrong. It's a level of customer service unusual by today's box-shifting standards.

However, with this card, you pay the price for that extra speed and service - the Signature Series 7900GT will raise an eyebrow or two at its £276 price tag, which is decidedly high-end territory; for a mere £25 more, you can be looking down the speedy end of an X1950XT.

Still and all, it's a remarkable feat - without investment in some fairly serious cooling, you'd find it close to impossible to clock a vanilla 7900GT as high as this. After all, it's outperforming a 7900GTX - on a stock 7900GT cooler. At 1,280x1024, your games will thank you for it - even if your wallet might require immediate medical attention.