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cheapest/weakest possible card for quake 4, far cry, and HL2

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September 5, 2006 2:45:58 AM

with an athlon 1600+ (soon to be upgraded to a 2000+) and 768mb of ddr266 ram, what is the weakest/cheapest agp card that can play Quake 4, Far Cry, and HL2.
this upgrade only has to last until UT2007 comes out

i was looking at a 9800 pro 128mb, and overclockability definatley factors into value
September 5, 2006 5:43:28 AM

I have a 5700LE and I run HL2 and CSS in 1024X768 with all options on high, except for AA, AF, HDR, and reflections. I usually get around 40FPS, but I have a AMD64 3200+ and 1GB Ram.
September 5, 2006 6:00:03 AM

well my 9600pro runs hl2 with max settings, 2xAA, 2XAF, 1024x768
farcry runs on high, 1024x768 and quake4 normal@800x600
so they run ok

a 9800pro should run them all max settings, 1024x768

idk about from wherever your from but in aus the x700pro is very cheap and is only just slightly worse than a 6600gtwhich is almost double the price.
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September 5, 2006 12:10:22 PM

Yea, definitely get a Radeon 9800, I used to use that and it ran HL2 fine, all setting maxed out, even in 1600X1200 it worked fine plus its dirt cheap, about $72, I found. Also just google grahics card overclocking and you can find some utilities to help you overclock.
September 5, 2006 3:36:17 PM

Quote:
Yea, definitely get a Radeon 9800, I used to use that and it ran HL2 fine, all setting maxed out, even in 1600X1200 it worked fine plus its dirt cheap, about $72, I found. Also just google grahics card overclocking and you can find some utilities to help you overclock.


Not with his specs. I was running a 9800pro with an AMD 2600+ 512MB RAM. With high settings at 1024x768 in HL2 it was pretty choppy at times. Barely good enough to be considered playable. He'd be ok with med settings though. Doom3 ran ok on high at 1024x768.
a c 363 U Graphics card
September 5, 2006 3:51:29 PM

Quote:
with an athlon 1600+ (soon to be upgraded to a 2000+) and 768mb of ddr266 ram, what is the weakest/cheapest agp card that can play Quake 4, Far Cry, and HL2.
this upgrade only has to last until UT2007 comes out

i was looking at a 9800 pro 128mb, and overclockability definatley factors into value


The 9800Pro is a great card, I have it in a PC that I'll be giving away to a cousin. Your CPU will hinder it's performance though, even if your were to upgrade it to an Athlon 2000+ XP. But it won't be as bad as with the Athlon 1600+ XP. I would overclock the PC to get an additional 100Mhz - 200MHz; the more the better.

Also, the 9800Pro doesn't overclock very well with the stock cooler (at least mine didn't).
September 5, 2006 4:11:17 PM

Quote:
with an athlon 1600+ (soon to be upgraded to a 2000+) and 768mb of ddr266 ram, what is the weakest/cheapest agp card that can play Quake 4, Far Cry, and HL2.
this upgrade only has to last until UT2007 comes out

i was looking at a 9800 pro 128mb, and overclockability definatley factors into value


The 9800Pro is a great card, I have it in a PC that I'll be giving away to a cousin. Your CPU will hinder it's performance though, even if your were to upgrade it to an Athlon 2000+ XP. But it won't be as bad as with the Athlon 1600+ XP. I would overclock the PC to get an additional 100Mhz - 200MHz; the more the better.

Also, the 9800Pro doesn't overclock very well with the stock cooler (at least mine didn't).

Exactly. A better way of explaing the point I was trying to make. I wasn't able to OC it much either with stock cooling.
September 5, 2006 4:45:55 PM

Call me crazy but I don't think the "upgrade" from an Athlon 1600 to an Athlon 2000 is worth hardly any money... if someone is giving you the chip... sure... go for it... if you're out to buy one... reconsider.
September 5, 2006 5:31:58 PM

a 9800 pro should work i dont know if will work with max settings but i tell ya it will work
September 5, 2006 6:50:27 PM

My present computer has exactly that VPU, a Radeon 9800Pro with 128MB memory. My processor is a P4 Northwood at 3.0Ghz and 800mhz fsb on socket 478. Not a bomb, but good enough compare to the Prescott that followed it.

I played Far Cry at 1280*1024 without any problem with setting at medium or good (out of low, medium and good, + ultra for water). I was getting a bit over 30 fps if I'm right and never got scene missing or skipping. Half-Life 2 is exactly the same (1280/1024 with medium setting) and sometime 1024*768 but with more "effects" on. I didn't play Quake 4 tough.

You should know that more recent games like Oblivion and/or FEAR will force you to reduce both resolutions and quality setting to get playable fps (frame per seconds). But it doesn't look to be considered anyway. So I'm just mentionning it.

You should remember in your case (no offence I hope) that your Athlon 1600+ will also be a limiting factor. So putting anything more powerful will be limited by your cpu in most case. So a 9800Pro is really the sweet spot I'd say for your cpu, as long as you don't mind not having all eye-candy maxed-out.

Forget about the GeForce 5900, it was NVidia worst VPU in their whole history. Any of NVidia 6600 (or more) VPU for the same price would also be a good choice, if not better for games using pixel shadder 3.0 not supported by the 9800Pro. I wouldn't base my choice on this, since game needing it usually need really powerful VPU, but you should know. Still, the 9800Pro is the best choice I think.

Good luck and happy gaming! :wink:
September 5, 2006 7:19:09 PM

Don't buy an ATI card if you plan on running Linux. Their Linux drivers either don't exist or are totally crap, depending on which card you have.

Nivida's Linux drivers supports their whole range and work very well.
September 5, 2006 7:24:02 PM

Someones going out of their way to rip on ATI.
September 5, 2006 7:43:40 PM

Not really, ATi have some great cards, and if I could turn back time I'd have an x1900XT rather than my 7900GT, but it is a fact that their linux and openGL support leaves alot to be desired.
September 5, 2006 7:46:15 PM

well the 9600pro that my friend has works great with HL2 and CS:S. also the gf6600 is a good option and it has SM.3 :) 
September 5, 2006 7:49:59 PM

Quote:
...but it is a fact that their linux and openGL support leaves alot to be desired.


Actually, their OpenGL gaming driver is excellent...

Linux they are weak in, but who buys linux to play games?

It's like bringing a knife to a gunfight. :p 
September 5, 2006 7:52:12 PM

thanks for the suggestions, and the 2100+ is from another system after i upgrade it

but is there any way i can upgrade this processor for cheap?, i dont want to spend much as it is going to be replaced after UT2007 comes out, but if a processor boost would help the performance i could spend a bit on it, since it is still going to be somebody's computer after that
September 5, 2006 7:52:26 PM

Quote:
Someones going out of their way to rip on ATI.

is true though nvidia do offer much better linux support :) 
September 5, 2006 7:53:17 PM

I understand, but who mentioned Linux? That's my point.
September 5, 2006 8:49:14 PM

first of all what is your mother board... because with it we cant know what is your cpu support..... but here is a list of cpu's formEBAY
what do would be a possible price range for you?
September 5, 2006 8:51:39 PM

first of all what is your mother board... because with it we cant know what is your cpu support..... but here is a list of cpu's formEBAY
what do would be a possible price range for you?
September 5, 2006 8:59:09 PM

Quote:
Don't buy an ATI card if you plan on running Linux. Their Linux drivers either don't exist or are totally crap, depending on which card you have.

Nivida's Linux drivers supports their whole range and work very well.


No offence Niz, but since he mention gaming (and quite good games at that), I guess his point is not about using Linux. I'm not shooting at Linux, but no REAL gamer in his right mind will use Linux unless big changes happen there.

Plus, their Linux driver are constently improving, so I guess it'll very soon get good if not already. I got to admit that I haven't used Linux but for a short try on a friend computer, so I can't really tell on the stability and performances of their drivers. But I still know that Linux is nowhere near Windows and even MAC OSX for gaming. That should be enough!

My 2 cents! :wink:
September 5, 2006 9:13:21 PM

i posted another thread about the proc upgrade

and i do run linux, but not for games, i generally run it to do homework so that i dont get distracted by games, so the ati drivers are good enough

XUbuntu ftw
a b U Graphics card
September 6, 2006 2:59:31 AM

Just so you know, the FX series defaults to DX8.0 codepath in HL2, and they crawl if you force DX9.0 path. Basically, you are running HL2 like on a GF4Ti, no water reflections.

OP, I also say a used 9700 pro or 9800 pro would be your best/cheap bet. Make sure it has a 256-bit memory interface as there are some crippled 128-bit ones out there that don't come close to the same performance.
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