Aztech RivaTNT2 32T - Page 4

Installation
After I griped about the miniscule installation guide, it was strewn into a heap of waste paper lying about. There really isn’t a need for one as long as you can loosen couple of screws and correctly identify the AGP slot.

Then as all wise DIY-ers will know, purge any old video card drivers from within your Windows system before checking in the newcomer. Installation can only be a breeze then. It was without a hitch for me.

RAMDAC and Windows
The 300Mhz RAMDAC on the Aztech is more than sufficient for my monitor, so there’s little to complain. Text was sharp and clear with no noticeable difference from my PowerColor Sniper TNT2 M64 (also 300Mhz RAMDAC). Admittedly, my Philips 17A cannot match today’s high-end boards to tell any significant difference.

Overclocking
Right! There's no way we will spare it the pain! I opted for the simpler TNTCLK 1.2 instead of PowerStrip to get the job done. From a simple slider, the core and memory clock could be modified easily.

To determine if the core/mem setting is stable and reliable is never easy. If you overdo the core, you will mostly experience a hard lock up instantly. If it is the memory under stress, you will usually get severe tearings and artifacts across the screen. In these conditions, you know for sure that the card cannot make it.

In other situations, things are a lot more deceiving. At any apparent stable speeds, while you will encounter little trouble around Windows, real trouble only shows up when you run graphics intensive games.

Cutting the long story short, the Aztech TNT2 was left to be punished with an hour’s worth of Q3Test on continual loop (using the following democycle.cfg):

Set D1 "demo q3demo2; set nextdemo vstr D2"
Set D2 "demo q3demo1; set nextdemo vstr D1"

vstr D1

I lost count on the number of hard resets I put my poor system through, but finally the card’s top speed was determined to be 175/160Mhz for the core and memory clock respectively.

The core made it past the Ultra’s default of 150Mhz, but the –7ns memory was the limiting factor hitting only 160Mhz. Any other attempts, even with 2Mhz increments was a big NO NO.

175/160Mhz… Compared with the default for a typical non-Ultra board, that is a 40% increase for the core and 7% for the memory. Not entirely shabby! But I wished for better… (NB: your overclocking success could vary for different batches of cards)

 

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