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NVIDIA MX-440-8x - Albatron MX480
Albatron's PC component section, mainly staffed by ex-Gigabyte employees have put a huge amount of effort into making a good name for themselves in this, their first year of making motherboards and VGA cards. They have done well, and we've had first hand experiance, prior to testing this card of their hard work (4200 Turbo P). We were extremely impressed with this product and judging from the response, so were you. We've had a number of emails telling us that the Turbo P in their computers also overclock as well as ours did.

One of the main problems with trying to break into such a competitive industry is keeping up with the Jones'. Albatron have made sure that their new products aren't out of date by using the latest motherboard chipsets and NVIDIA based GPUs. This, their MX480 is their big hope in the budget/mainstream sector. Priced at a very competitive 75 including VAT it comes in just under the cost of a Radeon 9000 PRO.

As per usual, Albatron packages their product very well and in a flamboyant manner. On the reverse side you are presented with a number of interesting features about the card and the AGP 3.0 specification. Inside you find a neatly packaged VGA card, cables and manual. It's surprising to see a lack of games or demonstration discs included however you do get a copy of WinDVD.

Albatron decided on a large heatsink which covers all the BGA RAM and the NV18 processing unit. Almost impossible to remove (we ran out of bottle after trying with a large flat head screwdriver and still failing) but the small fan manages to do it's job without causing a large amount of noise. The PCB is dark blue in colour, keeping with the company's branding. It's fairly sparsely crowded on the front with many places on the PCB looking as if components are missing. However the back is heavily packed with resistors and low profile capacitors.

We see good attention to detail, with a frosted fin fan being used. The MX series of cards aren't as large as their Titanium brothers and this makes installing them a little easier.

Albatron decide to stick with reference designs from NVIDIA and keep the GPU clocked at 275MHz and the memory at 512MHz. After running our benchmarking suite, when taking the card out of the machine the heatsink felt barely warm, so there should be some room for overclocking on these cards.

The manual is well laid out and provides the user with concise instructions on how to install and configure the MX480.

Sadly people will get confused with the name of this card. It isn't an MX460, just an MX440 with 8x AGP enabled. Lets hope that other companies don't follow suit and name their MX440-8x cards MX480.

The MX480 has 1 TV-OUT, 1 DVI and 1 D-Sub connector. Surprisingly Albatron don't supply a DVI converter, however this is a valid move to cut costs on a card that has to be as cost effective as possible.

As a package the Albatron MX480 clearly shows the fact that it's a budget board. Although the packaging is of high standard, the lack of software and accessories contribute to the low asking price for this card.
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