Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Asus Extreme N6600GT TOP Limited Edition Video Card

Filed under
Hardware
Reviews

With every new generation of video cards come many iterations of the new technology. With nVidia's introduction of the 6 series of GPUs, there have come multiple cards based on similar families of GPUs. Most notably the 6800 family brought to the table the 6800, 6800GT and 6800 Ultra. Likewise with the midrange 6 series card(s) I'll be looking at today, the Asus Extreme N6600GT/TOP/TD. With the Extreme N6600GT/TOP/TD we have what is one of the most expensive 6600GTs on the market, but include Asus' reputation for ultra high quality components, build quality, and with this model, equipped with 128 MB of Samsung 1.6ns DDR3. Follow along on my evaluation to see if this Limited Edition card provides the performance to go along with it's higher than average price tag.

I have to say that despite the price, I was quite interested in these particular cards. Having been an avid 3DMark bencher for many years, and finding the cost of the top end cards prohibitively high, (especially if you want to enjoy the current SLI configuration for gaming), I decided that for the cost of one high end card I could have 2 of these. Combined with the DFI UT LP NF4 SLI-D and a good clocking AMD 3500+ Winchester we might be able to set some marks or at least match some of the top 3D benchers in this card class. Having owned and set records previously with Asus video card products, in particular their outstanding Ti4800/Ti4200 class, I was hoping for something a tad more special than the rest of the crowd.

I had a major concern with cooling efficiency with this unit. It not only uses a thermal pad, but also white thermal paste. My initial overclocking exploits were definitely hindered by this method of thermal transfer, as it was acting more as an insulator than a transfer mechanism.

When I bought these cards for review, they were initially advertised at 550 MHz clock for the GPU. They are now advertised at 520 MHz GPU clock, and I understand why. Though mine defaulted at 520 MHz, any attempt to run the card at the then advertised 550 MHz GPU clock failed in benching with a solid freeze after a minute or so, from overheating.

<fast forward>

ASUS has again produced a well built, high quality and stable platform in the Extreme N6600GT/TOP. It's very pricey compared to cards from other manufacturers, even compared to their own Extreme N6600GT/TD version. Its package is not spectacular compared to others either, offering up one game and several other pieces of software. It's also a Limited Edition card with only 5,000 being manufactured.

But I have to be honest, this card when cooled better, whether via water cooling or as I did with phase changed chilled coolant, seems to clock higher than others in its class without modifications to increase voltages.

These are the finest 6600GTs you can buy in my honest opinion despite the price premium, even without having tested others. That doesn't mean you won't find some great price/performance bargains out there I'm sure.

If the $250 price tag is a bit much, check out the Extreme N6600GT/TD.They look identical but run at the reference clocks, and I'm told they clock pretty well too. Considering the cost and performance of the Asus Extreme N6600GT TOP Limited Edition, I give these cards a solid...

Full Review with pics and benchmarks.

More in Tux Machines

today's howtos

Security Leftovers

  • Java and Python FTP attacks can punch holes through firewalls
    The Java and Python runtimes fail to properly validate FTP URLs, which can potentially allow attackers to punch holes through firewalls to access local networks. On Saturday, security researcher Alexander Klink disclosed an interesting attack where exploiting an XXE (XML External Entity) vulnerability in a Java application can be used to send emails.
  • Microsoft: no plans to patch known bugs before March [Ed: Microsoft is keeping open 'back doors' that are publicly known about, not just secret ones]
    Microsoft has no plans to issue updates for two vulnerabilities, one a zero-day and the other being one publicised by Google, before the scheduled date for its next round of updates rolls around in March. The company did not issue any updates in February, even though it had been scheduled to switch to a new system from this month onwards. It gave no reason for this, apart from saying: "This month, we discovered a last minute issue that could impact some customers and was not resolved in time for our planned updates today. "After considering all options, we made the decision to delay this month’s updates. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by this change to the existing plan." The Google-disclosed bug was made public last week, and is said to be a flaw in the Windows graphic device interface library that can be exploited both locally and remotely to read the contents of a user's memory.
  • Microsoft issues critical security patches, but leaves zero-day flaws at risk
    Microsoft has patched "critical" security vulnerabilities in its browsers, but has left at least two zero-day flaws with public exploit code. The software giant released numerous patches late on Tuesday to fix flaws in Adobe Flash for customers using Internet Explorer on Windows 8.1 and later, as well as Edge for Windows 10.

Red Hat News

  • Why upstream contributions matter when developing open source NFV solutions.
    When software is developed using open source methods, an upstream repository of the code is accessible to all members of the project. Members contribute to the code, test it, write documentation and can create a solution from that code to use or distribute under license. If an organization follows the main stream or branch of the upstream code their solution will receive all the changes and updates created in the upstream repository. Those changes simply “flow down” to the member’s solution. However, if a member organization forks the code — if they create a solution that strays from the main stream — their solution no longer receives updates, fixes and changes from the upstream repository. This organization is now solely responsible for maintaining their solution without the benefit of the upstream community, much like the baby salmon that took a tributary and then have to fend for themselves rather than remain in the main stream and receive the benefit and guidance of the other salmon making their way to the ocean.
  • HPE and Red Hat Join Forces to Give Customers Greater Choice for NFV Deployments
    Hewlett Packard Enterprise ( NYSE : HPE ) and Red Hat, Inc. ( NYSE : RHT ) announced today they are working together to accelerate the deployment of network functions virtualization (NFV) solutions based on fully open, production-ready, standards-based infrastructures. HPE plans to offer ready-to-use, pre-integrated HPE NFV System solutions and HPE Validated Configurations incorporating Red Hat OpenStack Platform and Red Hat Ceph Storage for communications service providers (CSPs).
  • Red Hat Joins the OpenPower Foundation
    As part of our commitment to delivering open technologies across many computing architectures, Red Hat has joined the OpenPOWER Foundation, an open development community based on the POWER microprocessor architecture, at the Platinum level. While we already do build and support open technologies for the POWER architecture, the OpenPOWER Foundation is committed to an open, community-driven technology-creation process – something that we feel is critical to the continued growth of open collaboration around POWER.
  • Buy, Sell or Hold? Analysts Approach: HCA Holdings, Inc. (HCA), Red Hat, Inc. (RHT)?

Linux and FOSS Events