The Gigabyte MAYA II GV-R9700 PRO is certainly coming out as one of the better alternative based on the ATI RADEON 9700 Pro VPU. Although the card is rather bare and just a plain offering, Gigabyte has bundled enough of software to make up for the lack in features. The card, however, still comes with standard features such as dual monitor display, DVI-I connector and TV-output.
In terms of performance, there's nothing available out there today that could even come close to scratch the RADEON 9700 Pro. If you are only looking for a plain card to deliver all the frames you need to play a quality 3D game, then this is probably the card to get today. Priced at S$725, the MAYA II GV-R9700 PRO is worth every single cent that you pay for, especially if you consider the performance and quality of the product.
The downside? Well, we can hardly come out with any at this point as there is nothing else to complain especially when the primary purpose of the graphics card is to deliver compelling 3D performance. This is one area where the RADEON 9700 Pro excels although we expect to see more refinements to the driver taking place in the near future. Driver is one area where ATI has to improve in order to stay competitive over NVIDIA and that's something which should keep users busy in the next couple of months since several updates are likely to occur during this initial period. We don't think this is a major issue since anyone who can afford a card as this is likely to be technically inclined.