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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [12.31.04]
Manufactured by: Shuttle

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I.C.E. I.C.E. Baby

CPU cooling duties are handled by Shuttle's own "Integrated Cooling Engine". The basic idea behind ICE is to use heatpipes to transfer the dissipation area from the top of the CPU to the back of the case. This also allows the CPU cooler to perform double duty as the main exhaust fan.

Although not exactly crucial to performance, I thought the highly polished copper face made for a neat photo op. :)

The fan itself is a 92mm fan using a BTX style 4 pin adapter. This should keep it running at quiet as possible. At full speed, the fan pushes around 50 CFM of air - but believe me when I say you don't want it spinning at that speed for very long if you value your hearing.

Now that we're familiar with the SN95G5 system itself, let's see how it performs!

The Test

To contrast the performance of the Shuttle SN95G5, which is based on the nForce3 Ultra chipset, we're going to compare it to VIA's counterpart AGP system. In addition, we'll throw in a motherboard that uses NVIDIA's own nForce4 Ultra chipset. This is NVIDIA's latest platform, and is intended to replace the NF3 Ultra. It uses PCI-E, so a different video card was used. Otherwise, the systems were identical.

Video cards used were an ATI Radeon 9600XT for the AGP systems, and ATI Radeon X600XT for the PCI-E system. The X600XT is essentially the same as the 9600XT, although comes clocked at a slightly higher speed. For the PCI-E tests, we lowered the clock speed to match that of the 9600XT.

The VIA K8T880 Pro board we used was the Abit AV8 (read the review here)
The NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra board was the Gigabyte K8NXP-9 (read the review here)

All of the latest drivers were used; WindowsXP had SP2 installed, which includes DirectX 9.0c.

By the way, I made a typo when drawing up these charts, so please disregard the "AN95G5" in the results. It should read "SN95G5". Sorry about that!

Let's get right to it, starting with the memory bandwidth tests, as per usual:

Memory Bandwidth

Since the DDR memory controller is on the Athlon64 CPU itself, these numbers should NEVER fluctuate. Moving along...

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