Chaintech FX5700 Ultra Apogee AA5700U Review
The Chaintech Apogee
AA5700U card looks pretty cool with the dark brown PCB and the golden colored
The PCB is based on 10 layers design which is
thicker and longer than a typical GeForce FX 5600 Ultra card as more layers and
components are needed for a GDDR-II memory architecture design.
There is an additional 12V ATX power
connector on the card which is required to attain maximum performance of the
card. The usual output options
on this card are the VGA connector, S-Video TV-Out and DVI-out.
This card doesn’t come with an
external TV codec like the usual Philips 7108 as TV-out capability is supported
by the NV36 core.
The cooling system on the card is
made up of 2 parts; the cooler at the front to cool the GPU and 4 GDDR-II BGA
chips and a heatsink at the back to cool another 4 GDDR-II BGA chips. The front
cooler includes two low noise LED fans on a copper heatsink with radiator-like
fins. The back heatsink is a golden colored aluminum plate with white thermal
interface to provide better thermal conductivity between the sink and the GDDR-II
After removing the cooler, you can
find the NV36 core with no heatspreader in FCBGA package with A1 revision
manufactured in Week 46 of Year 2003 by TSMC. Notice that there are some
protective materials on the small resistors that are found only on the newer
NV36 GPU. The GeForce FX 5700 Ultra core is manufactured on 0.13 micron
Chaintech uses the Samsung
K4N26323AE-GC1K GDDR2 memory chips in 144 Ball FBGA package default clocked at
900Mhz. Samsung K4N26323AE-GC1K has an effective memory clock of 1100Mhz with
1.8ns access time which is faster than the K4N26323AE-GC22 with 2.2ns access
time used by many FX5700 Ultra cards out there. No doubt, we can expect the
memory clock on this card to be pushed much higher.
The two blue LED fans in action
during the night is definitely most pleasing and putting this card in a window
modded case will be real cool.