which graphic card serie Workstation or Gaming?

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

Hello all,

I have been comparing the two ATI series also the
equivalent NVidia and can not figure out what are
the major differences between the Workstation
and Gaming series?

One main difference is obvious: price tag

I have a DELL Worstation 670 with 64-bit extensions
and PCI-Express graphic port and would like to upgrade
it with the most powerful and reasonably priced Graphic
Card but I am affraid of selecting the cheaper Gaming
models serie and then realizing it would not perform
as well as the Workstation model ...

My needs?

- Software Development
- Database Development
- Gaming :-) Half-Life 2/Counter-Strike/AOM/etc
- No CAD applications
- Support for different OS(s): XP, Linux, Unix, Solaris 4 Intel.

My Workstation shipped bundled with an ATI Fire V3100 I
did not want to ask DELL for a different one because they
would most likely overprice it, I decided to get the cheapest
bundled from DELL and upgrade later on.

TIA,
Best Regards,
Giovanni
12 answers Last reply
More about which graphic card serie workstation gaming
  1. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    In article <380ipqF5k8d8lU1@individual.net>, Giovanni Azua says...
    > Hello all,
    >
    > I have been comparing the two ATI series also the
    > equivalent NVidia and can not figure out what are
    > the major differences between the Workstation
    > and Gaming series?
    >
    > One main difference is obvious: price tag
    >
    > I have a DELL Worstation 670 with 64-bit extensions
    > and PCI-Express graphic port and would like to upgrade
    > it with the most powerful and reasonably priced Graphic
    > Card but I am affraid of selecting the cheaper Gaming
    > models serie and then realizing it would not perform
    > as well as the Workstation model ...
    >
    > My needs?
    >
    > - Software Development
    > - Database Development
    > - Gaming :-) Half-Life 2/Counter-Strike/AOM/etc
    > - No CAD applications
    > - Support for different OS(s): XP, Linux, Unix, Solaris 4 Intel.
    >
    > My Workstation shipped bundled with an ATI Fire V3100 I
    > did not want to ask DELL for a different one because they
    > would most likely overprice it, I decided to get the cheapest
    > bundled from DELL and upgrade later on.
    >
    Go for the gaming one. You only need the workstation one if you use
    CAD.

    If you intend using Linux, go for a nVIDIA one for better driver
    support.


    --
    Conor

    An imperfect plan executed violently is far superior to a perfect plan.
    -- George Patton
  2. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    Giovanni Azua wrote:

    > Hello all,
    >
    > I have been comparing the two ATI series also the
    > equivalent NVidia and can not figure out what are
    > the major differences between the Workstation
    > and Gaming series?
    >
    > One main difference is obvious: price tag

    The workstation boards are more likely to have dual DVI outputs, generally
    have better-quality passive components (capacitors and the like), and
    generally have firmware tuned for openGL rather than Direct3D. Other than
    that they're pretty much the same--if you compare some models of consumer
    and workstation board you'll find that the circuit board itself is
    identical.

    > I have a DELL Worstation 670 with 64-bit extensions
    > and PCI-Express graphic port and would like to upgrade
    > it with the most powerful and reasonably priced Graphic
    > Card but I am affraid of selecting the cheaper Gaming
    > models serie and then realizing it would not perform
    > as well as the Workstation model ...
    >
    > My needs?
    >
    > - Software Development

    Unless you're developing graphics-intensive software the video board makes
    little difference here, and if you are it should be typical of what you
    expect your target market to be using.

    > - Database Development

    Video board makes _no_ difference.

    > - Gaming :-) Half-Life 2/Counter-Strike/AOM/etc

    Definitely do not want a workstation board for this.

    > - No CAD applications

    Removes the compatibility-with-CAD issue.

    > - Support for different OS(s): XP, Linux, Unix, Solaris 4 Intel.

    This may end up the decision-making driver. Just about everything supports
    XP. ATI and nvidia take different approaches to Linux support--nvidia's is
    closed-source but pretty much fully supports the capabilities of their
    chips, ATI has a closed-source driver that's so-so and on an intermittent
    basis works with the developer community to allow open-source support for
    their chips, but it generally doesn't happen while the chip is current. So
    for Linux, if politics is more important to you than performance you'd want
    to go ATI, while if performance is more important than politics you'd be
    better off to go nvidia. Solaris you're likely on your own. As for Unix,
    don't encourage SCO.

    > My Workstation shipped bundled with an ATI Fire V3100 I
    > did not want to ask DELL for a different one because they
    > would most likely overprice it, I decided to get the cheapest
    > bundled from DELL and upgrade later on.
    >
    > TIA,
    > Best Regards,
    > Giovanni

    --
    --John
    to email, dial "usenet" and validate
    (was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)
  3. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    Hello Benjaming,

    Thank you very very much, you are indeed very well
    informed on the subject :-) I will follow your advice
    and will go for the previous NVidia model 6600GT.

    Many thanks,
    Best Regards,
    Giovanni
  4. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

    Hello Clarke,

    Many thanks for your exhaustive response!

    I have had second thoughts about buying a previous
    cheaper version of NVidia or ATI e.g. NVidia ASUS N6600GT
    128MB, instead of upgrading to this one I would rather
    stay with my current Fire V3100 4 pixel pipelines 128MB ...
    if I want an upgrade I want an upgrade :-)

    Actually checking more in details the NVidia vs ATI I found
    that ATI has more appealing numbers i.e.

    "ATI Radeon X800 XT Platinum" clock rate 520Mhz
    "ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum" clock rate 540Mhz

    vs

    "NVidia 6800 Ultra" clock rate 400Mhz

    Which somehow contradicts with your judgement that NVidia
    is usually faster than ATI ... funnily I loaded my 3DMark
    project for their latest benchmarking (I got 1180 score)
    and reviewing others saw the topmost 12K score being NVidia
    6800 Ultra, perhaps very few people have bought ATI latest
    already ...

    When the comparison comes to drivers availability I think this
    changes continuosly ... I think is better getting the
    most powerful card and wait for the drivers to upgrade than
    getting great drivers support but then stay with the desire
    of having the fastest card :-)

    What do you think?

    Best Regards,
    Giovanni

    PS: Playing Counter-Strike with ATI V3100 (latest drivers XP) is
    really frustrating ... the lagging is noticeably horrible.

    "J. Clarke" wrote
    > This may end up the decision-making driver. Just about everything
    supports
    > XP. ATI and nvidia take different approaches to Linux support--nvidia's
    is
    > closed-source but pretty much fully supports the capabilities of their
    > chips, ATI has a closed-source driver that's so-so and on an intermittent
    > basis works with the developer community to allow open-source support for
    > their chips, but it generally doesn't happen while the chip is current.
    So
    > for Linux, if politics is more important to you than performance you'd
    want
    > to go ATI, while if performance is more important than politics you'd be
    > better off to go nvidia. Solaris you're likely on your own. As for Unix,
    > don't encourage SCO.
    >
  5. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati (More info?)

    Hello Clarke,

    Many thanks for your exhaustive response!

    I have had second thoughts about buying a previous
    cheaper version of NVidia or ATI e.g. NVidia ASUS N6600GT
    128MB, instead of upgrading to this one I would rather
    stay with my current Fire V3100 4 pixel pipelines 128MB ...
    if I want an upgrade I want an upgrade :-)

    Actually checking more in details the NVidia vs ATI I found
    that ATI has more appealing numbers i.e.

    "ATI Radeon X800 XT Platinum" clock rate 520Mhz
    "ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum" clock rate 540Mhz

    vs

    "NVidia 6800 Ultra" clock rate 400Mhz

    Which somehow contradicts with your judgement that NVidia
    is usually faster than ATI ... funnily I loaded my 3DMark
    project for their latest benchmarking (I got 1180 score)
    and reviewing others saw the topmost 12K score being NVidia
    6800 Ultra, perhaps very few people have bought ATI latest
    already ...

    When the comparison comes to drivers availability I think this
    changes continuosly ... I think is better getting the
    most powerful card and wait for the drivers to upgrade than
    getting great drivers support but then stay with the desire
    of having the fastest card :-)

    What do you think?

    Best Regards,
    Giovanni

    PS: Playing Counter-Strike with ATI V3100 (latest drivers XP) is
    really frustrating ... the lagging is noticeably horrible.

    "J. Clarke" wrote
    > This may end up the decision-making driver. Just about everything
    > supports XP. ATI and nvidia take different approaches to Linux
    > support--nvidia's is closed-source but pretty much fully supports
    > the capabilities of their chips, ATI has a closed-source driver
    > that's so-so and on an intermittent basis works with the developer
    > community to allow open-source support for their chips, but it
    > generally doesn't happen while the chip is current. So for Linux,
    > if politics is more important to you than performance you'd
    > want to go ATI, while if performance is more important than
    > politics you'd be better off to go nvidia. Solaris you're likely
    > on your own. As for Unix, don't encourage SCO.
    >
  6. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    Hello Clarke,

    Many thanks for your exhaustive response!

    I have had second thoughts about buying a previous
    cheaper version of NVidia or ATI e.g. NVidia ASUS N6600GT
    128MB, instead of upgrading to this one I would rather
    stay with my current Fire V3100 4 pixel pipelines 128MB ...
    if I want an upgrade I want an upgrade :-)

    Actually checking more in details the NVidia vs ATI I found
    that ATI has more appealing numbers i.e.

    "ATI Radeon X800 XT Platinum" clock rate 520Mhz
    "ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum" clock rate 540Mhz

    vs

    "NVidia 6800 Ultra" clock rate 400Mhz

    Which somehow contradicts with your judgement that NVidia
    is usually faster than ATI ... funnily I loaded my 3DMark
    project for their latest benchmarking (I got 1180 score)
    and reviewing others saw the topmost 12K score being NVidia
    6800 Ultra, perhaps very few people have bought ATI latest
    already ...

    When the comparison comes to drivers availability I think this
    changes continuosly ... I think is better getting the
    most powerful card and wait for the drivers to upgrade than
    getting great drivers support but then stay with the desire
    of having the fastest card :-)

    What do you think?

    Best Regards,
    Giovanni

    PS: Playing Counter-Strike with ATI V3100 (latest drivers XP) is
    really frustrating ... the lagging is noticeably horrible.

    "J. Clarke" wrote
    > This may end up the decision-making driver. Just about everything
    > supports XP. ATI and nvidia take different approaches to Linux
    > support--nvidia's is closed-source but pretty much fully supports
    > the capabilities of their chips, ATI has a closed-source driver
    > that's so-so and on an intermittent basis works with the developer
    > community to allow open-source support for their chips, but it
    > generally doesn't happen while the chip is current. So for Linux,
    > if politics is more important to you than performance you'd
    > want to go ATI, while if performance is more important than
    > politics you'd be better off to go nvidia. Solaris you're likely
    > on your own. As for Unix, don't encourage SCO.
    >
  7. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    "Giovanni Azua" <bravegag@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:383epqF5jpmu1U1@individual.net...
    > Hello Clarke,
    >
    > Many thanks for your exhaustive response!
    >
    > I have had second thoughts about buying a previous
    > cheaper version of NVidia or ATI e.g. NVidia ASUS N6600GT
    > 128MB, instead of upgrading to this one I would rather
    > stay with my current Fire V3100 4 pixel pipelines 128MB ...
    > if I want an upgrade I want an upgrade :-)
    >
    > Actually checking more in details the NVidia vs ATI I found
    > that ATI has more appealing numbers i.e.
    >
    > "ATI Radeon X800 XT Platinum" clock rate 520Mhz
    > "ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum" clock rate 540Mhz
    >
    > vs
    >
    > "NVidia 6800 Ultra" clock rate 400Mhz
    >
    > Which somehow contradicts with your judgement that NVidia
    > is usually faster than ATI ... funnily I loaded my 3DMark
    > project for their latest benchmarking (I got 1180 score)
    > and reviewing others saw the topmost 12K score being NVidia
    > 6800 Ultra, perhaps very few people have bought ATI latest
    > already ...
    >
    > When the comparison comes to drivers availability I think this
    > changes continuosly ... I think is better getting the
    > most powerful card and wait for the drivers to upgrade than
    > getting great drivers support but then stay with the desire
    > of having the fastest card :-)
    >
    > What do you think?
    >
    > Best Regards,
    > Giovanni
    >
    > PS: Playing Counter-Strike with ATI V3100 (latest drivers XP) is
    > really frustrating ... the lagging is noticeably horrible.

    GPU clock speed comparisons between ATI and nVidia are misleading. Just as
    clock speed comparisons between the AMD 64bit CPUs and the Intel P4's are
    misleading. In every benchmark that I've seen (artificial and gaming; ) the
    6800 Ultras are faster than the X800XTs.

    While clock speed is a factor, the number of pipelines, vertex/pixel
    shaders, memory architecture, and general GPU architecture also play a large
    factor in determining GPU performance.

    RF
  8. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    Hi Benjamin,

    Thanks again for your assistance ...

    I had the NVidia GeForce 6600GT card yesterday in front
    of me ... but what made me hesitate before buying it was
    the fact that it only includes 128MB instead of 256MB.
    I know that more is not necessarily better but I wonder
    if the lack of 128MB would impact my experience gaming?
    at the end I can not know how much of this RAM is being
    actually used? by e.g. Counter-Strike, Half Life 2 ...

    I have also searched all over internet and did not find
    any GeForce 6600 featuring 256MB ...

    Price-wise the difference is very heavy specially here in
    Switzerland:

    NVidia GeForce 6600GT : 300CHF
    Nvidia GeForce 6800 xxx: +700CHF

    meaning +350USD difference ...

    Any ideas?

    I would also like to know if you have any brand opinion
    I would say ASUS is the best one ... isn't it?

    Best Regards,
    Giovanni
  9. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    "Giovanni Azua" <bravegag@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:383j0fF5jt1llU1@individual.net...
    > Hi Benjamin,
    >
    > Thanks again for your assistance ...
    >
    > I had the NVidia GeForce 6600GT card yesterday in front
    > of me ... but what made me hesitate before buying it was
    > the fact that it only includes 128MB instead of 256MB.
    > I know that more is not necessarily better but I wonder
    > if the lack of 128MB would impact my experience gaming?
    > at the end I can not know how much of this RAM is being
    > actually used? by e.g. Counter-Strike, Half Life 2 ...
    >
    > I have also searched all over internet and did not find
    > any GeForce 6600 featuring 256MB ...
    >
    > Price-wise the difference is very heavy specially here in
    > Switzerland:
    >
    > NVidia GeForce 6600GT : 300CHF
    > Nvidia GeForce 6800 xxx: +700CHF
    >
    > meaning +350USD difference ...
    >
    > Any ideas?
    >
    > I would also like to know if you have any brand opinion
    > I would say ASUS is the best one ... isn't it?
    >
    > Best Regards,
    > Giovanni

    In the current games out there (HL2, D3, etc) 128MB of Ram on the video card
    will prevent you from using the high quality textures. They simply take up
    too much room to fit comfortably in 128MB. Benchmarks on
    www.tomshardware.com have shown this. As they increased resolution and/or
    texture quality the performance of the 128MB 6600GT fell of noticably. That
    said, if you're happy with using medium-quality textures, the card will
    perform completely fine.
  10. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    "Giovanni Azua" <bravegag@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:383j0fF5jt1llU1@individual.net...

    > I had the NVidia GeForce 6600GT card yesterday in front
    > of me ... but what made me hesitate before buying it was
    > the fact that it only includes 128MB instead of 256MB.
    > I know that more is not necessarily better but I wonder
    > if the lack of 128MB would impact my experience gaming?
    > at the end I can not know how much of this RAM is being
    > actually used? by e.g. Counter-Strike, Half Life 2 ...
    >
    > I have also searched all over internet and did not find
    > any GeForce 6600 featuring 256MB ...

    > Best Regards,
    > Giovanni

    Then again, you can always add more RAM in your DELL, up to 4GB...
    I'm not sure how a PCI-Express graphic adapter accesses this memory though,
    I'm so used to AGP Aperture.


    --
    Luc Monod
    Engineering Coordinator
    (Dell Precision 470, 1 CPU, FireGL V3100, 2GB RAM)
  11. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    Giovanni Azua wrote:

    > Hello Clarke,
    >
    > Many thanks for your exhaustive response!
    >
    > I have had second thoughts about buying a previous
    > cheaper version of NVidia or ATI e.g. NVidia ASUS N6600GT
    > 128MB, instead of upgrading to this one I would rather
    > stay with my current Fire V3100 4 pixel pipelines 128MB ...
    > if I want an upgrade I want an upgrade :-)
    >
    > Actually checking more in details the NVidia vs ATI I found
    > that ATI has more appealing numbers i.e.
    >
    > "ATI Radeon X800 XT Platinum" clock rate 520Mhz
    > "ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum" clock rate 540Mhz
    >
    > vs
    >
    > "NVidia 6800 Ultra" clock rate 400Mhz
    >
    > Which somehow contradicts with your judgement that NVidia
    > is usually faster than ATI ... funnily I loaded my 3DMark
    > project for their latest benchmarking (I got 1180 score)
    > and reviewing others saw the topmost 12K score being NVidia
    > 6800 Ultra, perhaps very few people have bought ATI latest
    > already ...

    You missed the point. I was not making a judgment about the performance of
    the hardware, I was commenting on the availability of drivers. Regardless
    of any differences in the hardware, that 6800 Ultra on Linux using the
    nvidia optimized drivers is going to outperform the ATI board using the
    default SVGA drivers in X.

    > When the comparison comes to drivers availability I think this
    > changes continuosly ... I think is better getting the
    > most powerful card and wait for the drivers to upgrade than
    > getting great drivers support but then stay with the desire
    > of having the fastest card :-)

    That is true for Windows where both companies release updated drivers on a
    regular basis. Linux is not Windows. Nvidia has consistently provided
    solid drivers for Linux, ATI has been spotty and their drivers have
    typically supported a subset of the features of their boards.

    > What do you think?

    Bottom line--for Linux I'd go with nvidia. Every experience I have had with
    ATI and Linux has been bad. And not because I don't like ATI--most of the
    video hardware I own is ATI.

    > Best Regards,
    > Giovanni
    >
    > PS: Playing Counter-Strike with ATI V3100 (latest drivers XP) is
    > really frustrating ... the lagging is noticeably horrible.
    >
    > "J. Clarke" wrote
    >> This may end up the decision-making driver. Just about everything
    >> supports XP. ATI and nvidia take different approaches to Linux
    >> support--nvidia's is closed-source but pretty much fully supports
    >> the capabilities of their chips, ATI has a closed-source driver
    >> that's so-so and on an intermittent basis works with the developer
    >> community to allow open-source support for their chips, but it
    >> generally doesn't happen while the chip is current. So for Linux,
    >> if politics is more important to you than performance you'd
    >> want to go ATI, while if performance is more important than
    >> politics you'd be better off to go nvidia. Solaris you're likely
    >> on your own. As for Unix, don't encourage SCO.
    >>

    --
    --John
    to email, dial "usenet" and validate
    (was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)
  12. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.videocards.ati,alt.comp.periphs.videocards.nvidia (More info?)

    Hi Luc,

    "Luc Monod" <LMonod@Patt-Technologies.com> wrote in message:
    > Then again, you can always add more RAM in your DELL, up to 4GB...
    > I'm not sure how a PCI-Express graphic adapter accesses this memory
    though,
    > I'm so used to AGP Aperture.
    >
    I have 2GB RAM in my Precision 670 but no idea if the Graphic card
    would ever use the RAM on board? btw I have found that XP 32-bits
    doesn't "see" more than 3GB ... you would need XP 64-bits, I read
    that in some DELL forum ...

    Regards,
    Giovanni
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