Meet the Asus ENGT430

For our look today at the GT 430, Asus graciously provided us with their GT 430 card, the ENGT430. As with all the other cards being released it’s a custom design, featuring the usual Asus design elements: a double-sealed fan, fuse protection, and - while we have a hard time believing this is an issue on such a small card – GPU guard PCB reinforcement.

For this card Asus is very specifically going after the HTPC market. The ENGT430 is a half-height card with a low-profile bracket included, and for cooling it uses a decently sized heatsink with a particularly tiny fan we measure at 36mm. The heatsink does stick up some, so the card is explicitly a double-slot card and you’ll want to make sure you have space for it.

As is the case with low-end cards, reference clocks don’t tend to mean much. While the GT 430 has a reference speed of 700MHz for the core and 1.8GHz effective for the DDR3 memory, Asus has gone ahead and clocked the card at 1.6GHz for the memory. The card is equipped with 8 800MHz (1.6GHz effective) Hynix DDR3 memory modules running in 16bit mode, which is why the card is clocked below NVIDIA’s reference clocks. We expect to see memory clocks all over the place with the launch cards, depending particularly on who could get the best deal on what speed grade of DDR3 RAM for these cards. Given that GT 430 is likely already a memory bandwidth challenged card, this will have an impact, although we don’t have the means to measure it (our card would only go to 1.75GHz on the RAM).

For ports Asus is going with what’s undoubtedly going to be the universal configuration for low-profile GT430 cards: 1x DVI, 1x HDMI, and 1 VGA port. The DVI port is necessary for monitors (without resorting to a dongle), the HDMI port is necessary for HTPC roles, and the VGA port being an easy addition as an optional 3rd port due to its analog nature. GF108 can only drive 2 monitors at once, so the usual restrictions apply.

As is common for budget cards, there’s little else besides the card in the box. Asus includes the low-profile bracket, a multilingual quick installation guide, and a driver CD. This is the first Asus card we’ve reviewed for some time without voltage tweaking capabilities, so even NVIDIA’s integrated overclocking utility is enough for the task.

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  • heflys - Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - link

    BTW, I've only had problems with one card. A nvidia 6600 GT or something.....The fan burnt out, and the card starting getting real hot. You can guess the rest. It was getting old though.
  • dnd728 - Wednesday, October 13, 2010 - link

    With fresh new Windows 7 install it would for example never wake up right from sleep - it may permanently freeze or refuse to log in or log in keeping the log-in screen and stop responding, artifacts may also show up.
    In XP none of that happens, but frequently and sporadically the VPU would crash and get restarted. No need stressing the GPU or CPU at all. It would also break the anti-keylogging software. Get the card out, and everything is back to normal.
  • khimera2000 - Thursday, October 14, 2010 - link

    Never had these issues with my 5970 on win 7.
  • khimera2000 - Thursday, October 14, 2010 - link

    sorry 5870 not 5970.
  • dnd728 - Thursday, October 14, 2010 - link

    Well, obviously they're working for most people.
    The question was, why so many people buy nvidia, and I gave one reason, my personal one - not because I love nvidia, but because the comparable AMD does not work for me. Give me any third competitor, and I'll give them a try. :)
  • extide - Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - link

    If you are constantly crashing windows, (blue screens), then you have bad hardware whatever is broken it needs to be replaced.
  • dnd728 - Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - link

    True, that's how I know it's ATI/AMD.
  • extide - Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - link

    It's not ATI/AMD, you may have happened to have a bunch of bad AMD/ATI cards yourself that were bad (in which case you would be extremely un-lucky and I actually highly doubt that is the case), but they in general are NOT. I have ran both, and even 3dfx back in the day. Currently my box at work uses a 4350, 100% stable (4Ghz i7/X58), never blue screens, and my pc at home has had MANY configs (single 4850, dual 4850, single 4870, single 4350, etc) NONE of them caused stability problems, and I have ran many many many driver versions over time . I am not insulting you or your intelligence but I am saying if you are getting blue screens in windows these days you have bad hardware or a bad driver. The ATI driver is not bad/broken, period.

    I'm not even a fanboy I have owned products from both vendors and my next may be an ATI/AMD one or an nVidia one, I haven't decided yet and I dont really consider stability to be a part of the decision as neither one of these companies make straight up un-reliable stuff. Infact last card I had was an 8800GT and then before that was an ATIX1950Pro in crossfire, and prior was just a single X1950Pro, and prior was a gf4 ti4200, then prior was a gf3 ti200, then prior was a voodoo 5 5500, and prior was a voodoo 3 3500, and I had many card before that too. That's just my main machine....

    There IS something bad in your machine, don;t take it as an insult, be mature about it and just figure it out dude.

    I remember years ago I was working on a machine that used RAMBUS, and I dont know if you are familiar with those but they required terminators in un-used ram slots. It had stability issues, I tried everything eventually pretty much swapped out all the hardware. It ended up being bad terminators in the empty ram slots. Weird stuff can and does happen with computers.
  • extide - Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - link

    Sorry, the 4Ghz i7/X58/6GB is my main pc at home, and my box at work is a Q9400/Q45/8GB
  • dnd728 - Wednesday, October 13, 2010 - link

    All of my machines plus a few others being defective in a way that would not allow them to accept ATI, but only competing brands? That's even less likely.

    If your car keeps breaking while driving road x, and nowhere else, then at first you say - a coincidence, then you look for a reason and decide - bad luck, but eventually you just avoid that road. Even if many other drivers are happy with it. It's not worth it.

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