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PCB Design

Developing a new PCB with a completely new wiring layout for the Radeon X1800 GTO wouldn’t make any sense, so it’s no wonder the card resembles the Radeon X1800 XL.

 

The cooler is designed in a different way and there’s no engineering connector in the top left of the PCB, but otherwise the Radeon X1800 GTO is exactly like the Radeon X1800 XL. They even have the same number of induction coils near the heatsink that covers the voltage regulator’s MOSFETs.

This PCB design isn’t without drawbacks, though. The PCB employed for Radeon X1800 is rather long, so you may have troubles trying to install your Radeon X1800 GTO into a small or barebone system case. Moreover, the Radeon X1800 GTO requires additional power while the GeForce 7600 GT doesn’t. The power consumption of the new graphics card from ATI isn’t going to be very high, but the 6-pin power connector is necessary since the power circuit hasn’t been modified to fully rely on the PCI Express x16 slot which can provide up to 75 watts of power (you’ll see below how much power the Radeon X1800 GTO needs in comparison with the Radeon X1800 XL).

There’s an ordinary R520 chip here which is the same as are installed on Radeon X1800 XL and Radeon X1800 XT. The resistors on the die package are located in the same manner on all Radeon X1800 chips, so it seems to be impossible to turn on the disabled hardware subunits by re-soldering. The subunits are probably disabled by means of melting the internal fuses, so BIOS updates are unlikely to have any effect. Still, there is a chance we can see modification-friendly cards, something like Radeon X1800 GTO2. The core clock rate of this card is 500MHz.

The card carries eight GDDR3 memory chips (Samsung K4J55323QG-BC20) in 136-pin FBGA packaging. Each chip has a capacity of 256Mbit, so the total of graphics memory is 256 megabytes. The chips are clocked at 500 (1000) MHz and work at 1.8V voltage. For comparison, the Radeon X1800 XL comes with faster, BC14 chips that are capable of working at frequencies up to 700 (1400) MHz. The use of slower chips with an access time of 2.0 nanoseconds helped cut the production cost of Radeon X1800 GTO to come extent, but also reduced its overclocking potential.

The card features a VIVO-supporting Rage Theater chip. Capturing analog video isn’t a very useful feature for today because such video mostly remained in the past, yet some users may find it helpful.

 
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