Aztech RivaTNT2 32T - Page 1

By Wilfred
Hardware One

Though Aztech has only a modest portfolio of graphics cards, it should be a familiar name to users of the earlier Sound Galaxy range of audio cards. Established in 1986, the company (a local Singapore firm) has made significant strides selling sound cards and modems in the world markets; but more significantly, the Aztech of today has also diversified further into manufacturing video cards and multimedia PC speakers.

Having said that, we are privileged to be provided a sample of their flagship video card for evaluation. The Aztech RivaTNT2 32T reviewed here is a stock non-Ultra 32Mb reference design from nVidia, sporting TV-Out and S-Video connectors thrown in as bonuses.

Bt869 chipset used for TV-Out
From left: S-Video out, TV-out, Monitor out connectors

Of course, with the release of nVidia’s GeForce and the coming of the next generation video cards, I was not a bit thrilled by the prospect of reviewing a dethroned king like the TNT2. Nonetheless, the card was put through its paces and you will soon see if the old jockey managed to pull any surprises.

From right: PowerColor Sniper TNT2 M64, Aztech RivaTNT2, Creative Annihilator GeForce

But... TNT2? Why?
The TNT2 has lost its buzz with the availability of nVidia’s next generation GeForce chip, and in this field we are more aware than others that good things never last forever. The TNT2 has had its fair share of glory and honour, and the time is ripe for the speed crown to be handed over. So where does that leave the present crop of TNT2s? Can't Moore's Law be broken?

At the rate nVidia is going and if they will continually churn out top-performing products, the short 6-month production cycle will mean a new contender for the number one spot, twice annually. That is bad news if you are undecided on the right time to splurge. There is no better time than now.

However, the Aztech TNT2 fits in as a very cost-effective solution with the prices driven down and the battle for the next generation king still unfought. ‘nuff of introduction… let’s get to the specs.


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