XFX announce Black Edition 9800GTX & 9800GX2 Page: 1
 9800GTX Black Edition
XFX announce Black Edition 9800GTX & 9800GX2
XFX have issued a press release detailing the release of two new cards to their line-up.  Its a new Black Edition version of the 9800GTX & 9800GX2.  These two G92-based cards will be available as limited editions and both of them will be bundled with Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed.
XFX state in their press release that these cards are faster than any card currently in the XFX line-up - or any card on the planet for that matter.  They say that these limited edition graphics cards are the real XFX family jewels.

Both cards are factory overclocked beyond XXX performance level.  These elite performers are also quite exclusive, with each one hand-picked and tested for quality assurance.  To enhance the Black Edition experience, the 9800 GTX and 9800 GX2 Black Editions also come with dedicated LiveHelp support and priority support through the xfxforce.com ticketing system and, as Black Card holders, buyers will enjoy an array of exclusive Black Edition perks.  Also the 9800GTX utilizes HybridPower technology to enable users to switch their graphics card to their motherboard GeForce GPU when surfing the web, working or running less graphically intense applications should your motherboard support the feature.
9800GX2 Black EditionAs for the specs, the Black Edition 9800 GTX has its core clocked at  760MHz, with 1GB of GDDR3 memory clocked at 1140MHz (2280MHz) and the shaders ramped up to 1900MHz.  These specs are against the standard release card speeds of 675MHz on the core, memory at 1100MHz (2200MHz) and shaders at 1688MHz.  The card is HDMI capable via an HDMI upgrade kit which is included in the bundle.

The 9800GX2 Black Edition has its cores bumped up to 700MHz and also has 1GB of GDDR3 memory but clocked a little lower at 1050MHz (2100MHz) and the Shaders clocked at 1700MHz.  This is opposed to standard release card speeds of 600MHz on the cores, memory at 1000MHz (2000MHz) and shaders at 1500MHz. This card also supports HDMI.
As for availability and pricing, the only place I've managed to find them listed in the UK is at Scan.  They are both on pre-order stating "Awaiting ETA from Manufacturer" and are priced at £270.23 Inc VAT for the GTX and at £430.24 Inc VAT for the GX2
Click on these links for full specs 9800GTX & 9800GX2
Would you be happy shelling out the extra money for a factory overclocked Black (limited) Edition XFX cards? Or just buy one of the standard versions and overclock them yourself to save a few pennies.
Lets us know in our forum.