Now serving number three...
Continuing our lineup of GeForce3 cards, we move on to Elsa's offering - the GLADIAC 920 (yes, it is supposed to be in caps). Dispersing with the usual company info and random historical mumbo jumbo, we're opting to go for the meat this time around - nothing but pure GeForce3 jugular.
Should you want any info on the GeForce3 chipset itself, you can take a look at our technology write-up over here. With that out of the way, all we have left to talk about is the GLADIAC 920 and its bundle.
The GLADIAC 920 seems about as plain Jane as it can possibly get. Aside from the S-Video out, the card looks very much like the reference design that NVIDIA came up with. There is no fancy schmancy hardware monitoring or voltage control. Heck even the utilities you get from Elsa don't have the overclocking controls available. The Elsa drivers are essentially NVIDIA reference with the Elsa logo tattooed all over them.
The GLADIAC also ships with a funky cool mouse pad that has the same art as the retail box. Resembling a 3M PMS, the texture of the mat is pretty good quality. If it actually is a 3M PMS, then the pad shouldn't last you too long, and you'll be back to your old pad in a matter of months.
Elsa had a slightly different policy concerning software that was bundled with a video card. They seem to have realized that most people don't particularly need, or want some of the crappiest games ever to grace this blessed earth. With that in mind, previous Elsa products came with the Elsa Best Select promotion. This meant that you could buy the video card essentially devoid of software, and opt to purchase a few of the games for considerably less than the retail cost. We liked this approach quite a bit, mainly because it cut the cost of an already expensive piece of hardware by throwing out the bits of flotsam.
We were expecting the same sort of policy regarding the GLADIAC 920, but things have changed. The GLADIAC 920 doesn't ship with much, but it does provide some interesting tidbits. Shipping with the card is the GeForce3 enhanced version of Giants: Citizen Kabuto. Not that anyone was complaining about Giant's looks before the GeForce3 came out, now it got even better. As we understand it, Elsa is the sole provider of this version of Giants. That will of course change in time, but the for the moment, they are the only guys to have it. The next page has tons of little comparison shots of the game.
Also shipping with the card is a DVD player, 3Dmark2001, and other assorted demos that are readily available for free from the NVIDIA site. Nothing you can't already download for free, minus the DVD player.