Noise, Overclocking, 2D Quality
The noise characteristics of the GeForce 7900 GT may seem rather poor if you compare it with the GeForce 7900 GTX. The small cooler installed on this card is always working at a high speed and is perfectly audible against the rest of the system sounds (from the CPU cooler, power supply and hard drives). We didn’t spot any trace of a speed management system, but perhaps it is only missing on test samples of the card. The fan speed can be controlled with the latest version of RivaTuner, but be careful not to reduce it too much or the card may die from overheat.
Frankly speaking, we don’t think much of the GeForce 7900 cooler. Small and with a tiny fan, it is very noisy, but is not very efficient. If you are planning to overclock your GeForce 7900 GT or want to have a silent computer, consider replacing the standard cooler with something better. We suppose some graphics card manufacturers are going to equip their GeForce 7900 GT with original coolers of their own design.
The GeForce 7900 GT is made out of those G71 chips that didn’t pass a frequency check for installation on GeForce 7900 GTX. That’s why we didn’t expect we would be able to raise the GPU frequency of the card even to 600MHz. That was really so. The maximum stable frequencies of the GPU and memory were 560MHz and 800 (1600) MHz (the card’s standard cooler was aided with an additional 120mm fan in this overclocking test). This is a good enough result considering the very simple cooler the GeForce 7900 GT is equipped with. Of course, overclockability varies from sample to sample, but at its official price of $299 the card is anyway going to be a real gift for any overclocker.
The new graphics card from Nvidia also yielded an impeccable 2D picture in all the display modes supported by our laboratory monitor, including 1800x1440@75Hz. We didn’t observe any fuzziness of test or shadowing.