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Conclusions
Somehow, I didn't really expect a "single" GeForce 7950 GX2 card to be a compelling product outside of a Quad SLI configuration. This puppy does have its warts, including the need for mobo BIOS updates and the SLI-like limitations for multi-monitor use that may turn some power users away. Still, the GX2 is remarkably tame overall. This card takes up no more space, draws no more power, and generates no more heat or noise than a Radeon X1900 XTX, but its performance is in another class altogether. The multi-GPU mojo generally happens transparently, too, thanks to a healthy collection of SLI profiles already established in NVIDIA's drivers. Putting two GPUs on a card has allowed NVIDIA to overcome the limitations of its present GPU designs and of current fab process tech to achieve new performance heights in a single PCI Express slot.

Of course, such things have been possible for quite some time in the form of a two-slot SLI or CrossFire solution, but the GX2 still has much to recommend it. Doubling up on GeForce 7900 GTs would get you an SLI setup in the same price range, but with lower (stock) GPU clock speeds and only 256MB of memory per GPU. And the GX2 works in any chipset, which may prove to be a real boon if you fancy one of Intel's Conroe processors, an Intel chipset, and uber-fast graphics. I could see that combination becoming very popular this summer, if things shake out as expected.

All that's left now is for NVIDIA to enable—and support—Quad SLI in consumer-built systems. Let's hope NVIDIA comes to its senses on that one sooner rather than later. TR

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