Although it's an odd way to start a review, the GeForce4 Ti technology didn't really look all that impressive when NVIDIA released it back in February. The GeForce3 had debuted roughly a year earlier (to similar fanfare and jaw-dropping benchmarks), yet its DirectX 8.x vertex and pixel shaders remained largely unexploited by most modern games.
For most purposes, the GeForce3 and GeForce3 Ti line had functioned more like ultra-powerful GeForce2 cards, pouring on the high-end speed, but with few games offering support for the feature sets that truly differentiated them from their older cousins. With NVIDIA rolling out the GeForce4 Ti, which included even more advanced technology, there was some doubt if there would be any overriding reason to buy one, particularly with prices on the cards above $350.
But after spending some serious time benchmarking and evaluating the Leadtek WinFast A250 Ultra TD, however, the situation has changed, as has my outlook. With a retail price of $400 this card definitely isn't an impulse buy or a casual upgrade, but it packs enough power (and enough extras) to make it worth considering for anyone looking to build a high-end system.