Mini Review: Only
months after their introduction, there
are now quite a few Athlon overclocking cards (Golden Finger Devices)
available. One thing that differentiates Innovatek's "Tweeking
Device2" (yes, it is spelled "tweeking") is that it does not require power input. It's also very
small, just over 1 inch square.
We received a sample of version 2.0 of the
TD2 from highspeedpc.com
and put it through our usual tests. I used a 550MHz retail Athlon (0.25
micron type) with an Alpha Cooler which we keep around for testing
Athlon motherboards and OC cards. This CPU is known to overclock to 700MHz
with full stability at 1.75 volts. It will run at 750MHz and 1.8 volts,
but stability is not perfect. The test setup included an Abit KA7
motherboard, 128MB of NEC PC-133 SDRAM (CAS3), and a Voodoo5 5500 video
The TD2 has settings for multipliers ranging from 5x to 10.5x, and core
voltage adjustments from 1.60v to 2.05v.
the TD2 is simple, you adjust 8 DIP switches in a single bank, to set the
CPU multiplier and core voltage. The card sticks up vertically from
the golden finger connector, but due to it's small size, you don't need to
worry about how much clearance you have in your case. I set the DIP
switches to 700MHz at 1.70 volts, and the system booted into Win98SE
without a hitch. Stability was very good at these settings. I
tried 750MHz at both 1.75v and 1.8 v, and while I could reliably boot into
Windows, the system would hang during benchmarking. The system was
completely stable at 1.70 volts and 700MHz.
Quick Benchmarks: Athlon overclocking
has been studied to death, so there's no need to go into detailed
benchmarking. I was more interested in stability, and how well the TD2
worked at different settings.
600MHz 650MHz 700MHz
Overclocking the system from 550MHz to
700MHz increased D3D performance by 12.5%, while CPU performance was
increased 25%. The system never hung or exhibited any signs of
instability at any of these settings.
The Tweeking Device2 is a nice low cost version of a Golden Finger Athlon overclock card.
The small size is helpful if you have a small case, and the lack of a
power connector can be helpful if you have lots of devices, and are
running out of plugs. The TD2 worked as well as any of the more
expensive Athlon overclock devices, at a lower cost, and smaller
size. If you are putting together a low-cost, overclocked Athlon
system, the TD2 is worth a look.
- small size makes it fit in any case
- low cost ($45 with free shipping)
- does not need external power
- works as well as more expensive devices
(as with all Athlon OC cards):
- requires that you remove the Athlon case
- voids AMD warranty
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 smiley faces
:) :) :) :) +
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