It looks like NVIDIA GeForce FX 5900 has landed. Not the Ultra board, although they are starting to trickle in to retail channels for those with Ultra deep pockets. I'm talking about the 'regular' board with no Ultra moniker. Although any graphics card with performance like these can hardly be called regular in any sense of the word.
With high performance and high price tags to match, boards based on NVIDIA's NV35 are here. Usually when a new GPU is launched, we get a reference board from the maker of the GPU, then we have an agonising wait while the manufacturer in question gets the GPU out to partners, and then a further wait while those partners ship boards in quantity to retailers.
So it's a nice surprise, dispite muted moaning on online forums, where nobody can wait for anything to appear, that we've got quantities of these new boards both in retail, and for people like me to look at.
Both MSI and ASUS were keen to get samples to us, indeed I looked at the MSI recently and declared it "probably my favourite graphics card of the past few weeks". And that's saying something, given the volume of cards I've looked at recently from all corners of the consumer space.
But the spotlight shines on the ASUS today, their V9950 model to be exact, shipping with the same GPU as the MSI and a similarly outlandish cooling solution. Remember the Hercules 9800 Pro? Well the ASUS V9950 has even more copper strapped to its sizable PCB, how it manages that I'll never know.
I covered NV35 facts and figures in the MSI review, so I wont waste my time and yours by going over the same old stuff again, especially since I plagerised Tarinder's work with FX5900 Ultra for most of it. So if you want to see what the GPU does, how it's clocked and how it compares to ATI's top of the line boards in terms of sexy things like fillrate, point your browser here.
With those details fresh in your head, let's have a look at the board itself. I doubt it can match the MSI in terms of extravagent packaging or heatsink design, but maybe it doesn't need to, it's an FX 5900, it's still more than capable of catching our eye I think.