I intend to upgrade my graphics card to an XFX GeForce 6800 GS 256 MB DDR3 8X AGP Extreme Edition card to get some extended life out of my current system and play the latest games. The system is a Gateway 700S:
Processor: Intel® Pentium® 4 Processor 2.4GHz w/
512K L2 Advanced Transfer Cache and 533MHz FSB
Memory: 1GB (2x512MB) RDRAM® PC800
Video: 128MB NVIDIA™ GeForce4 Ti-4200G with TV Out
and DVI Graphics Accelerator
My question is: will the overall graphics performance of the higher end AGP 6800GS card be limited by the slower 2.4 GHz processor and 1MB of RDRAM?
More about :high end agp graphics card processor ram requirements
It will depend on the game: older games may well be CPU limited and not show any performance improvement (Orbiter, for example, gets almost exactly the same frame-rate on my 7800GS as it did on the Radeon 9500 Pro... but then it gets up to 250fps anyway), but new games that are graphics limited will be a lot faster.
Plus, of course, on CPU-limited games you could always increase resolution and AA to give better image quality at the same frame-rate.
Thanks for the advice, I am playing Doom3, Fear and HL2, so I believe that the 6800GS or at least the 6600GT will keep me happy for a while until I get the monster machine with a car radiator for cooling the latest gear...