Nvidia GeForce 7300 LE review
The 7300 LE is the latest addition to Nvidia’s entry-level range. As it’s essentially an under-clocked 7300 GS, its performance is too poor to recommend it as a gaming card. With its 450MHz core clock and 256MB of 333MHz memory, we saw unplayable frame rates even at 1,024 x 768 in both test games – 15fps in Call of Duty 2 and 13fps in Far Cry – and it isn’t exactly overflowing with features either.
But just as Elonex has chosen it for the Artisan VX, you can also take advantage if you’re building a media centre. It’s the cheapest card available that offers hardware-accelerated, high-definition video playback using Nvidia’s PureVideo technology, so it will be ideal in a compact, modestly powered Windows Media Center PC. It’s a half-height card too, so if you can find a suitable backplate it will fit in a low-profile chassis, although you’ll forfeit the D-SUB output.
MSI’s version offers single-link DVI and D-SUB interfaces as well as TV-out for hooking up other displays via the supplied S-Video cable. Its bundled suite of apps isn’t very useful, but the fan is quiet and there’s dual-monitor support.
This MSI card isn’t the best example of the GeForce 7300 LE, as it doesn’t have a component adapter and isn’t passively cooled; a card such as the Albatron would be a better choice for a media centre.