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7600GT vs. 7900GT

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Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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November 8, 2006 1:23:51 PM

I'm in the process of building a new computer right now and I was wondering which one of these two cards would be better:

1. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

or

2. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

The main differences are that the first one has the 7900 chipset instead of 7600, 256 memory interface instead of 128, and 24 Pixelpipelines instead of 12. The second one has slightly faster core/memory clock speeds.

Now of course the first one is better, but it is also $50.00 (US) more. I don't know too terribly much about video cards, so I'm not sure if the improvements justify dropping another fifty bucks on it. The most involved task whichever card I get will be used for is running new games, such as Neverwinter Nights 2 and Supreme Commander (when it's released in early 2007).

If anybody would like to suggest another video card, that would be great too. I am looking to stay in the $150-$175 price range, but I'll go a bit higher if it's a great deal for the money.

Thanks in advance!

~Brett

More about : 7600gt 7900gt

November 8, 2006 1:45:53 PM

I guess it depends a bit on what you're willing to settle for and how soon you think you'll upgrade. I got a 7600, because I expect to get a DX10 card in about 1 1/2 to 2 years. Also, because I upgraded from a Radeon 9250, (ancient technology, really) the graphical difference has already been dramatic, and I don't play games that really require much power, except Oblivion. Now that may change because of getting this new card, but I doubt it.

By the way, the links that you sent. It says that the 7900 is $90 more than the 7600. Don't know if that's a deal-breaker for you.
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November 8, 2006 2:10:42 PM

You might want to check out the VGA charts here just to see how the two stack up against one another. Depending on whether you are planning on getting a DX10 card, you might want to save up some cash, but in my opinion, the extra cash would be well spent. The differences in the number of pipelines and the bitwidth of the interface are pretty big, so you will see noticebly better performance out of the 7900 over the 7600. But like I said, you would best be served by comparing the two cards via the VGA charts and then making a decision with that information factored in.

Good Luck

-Zorak
November 8, 2006 2:22:07 PM

Thanks for the replies guys, very informative.

To those who were asking, I plan on keeping this card for a long time. My current computer is 5 years old and has received zero upgrades...I like to use computers for as long as I can, then simply buy a new one when the old simply doesn't come even close to cutting it any more. With that in mind, perhaps the extra money is worth it.

Oh, and in response to the $90.00 price difference, the first one currently has a $40.00 mail-in rebate available, which is why I say the difference is only $50.00.
November 8, 2006 2:25:20 PM

A 7600GT should do just fine.

See, here's the thing........follow the logic:

Those benchmarks Jag posted are very helpful. BUT put them into perspective. Of course a 7900 is 25-40% better than a 7600....but you're paying for it. BUT, do you really need to spend that extra money to game in BF2 @ 1280 rez with a 135 fps, when the 95 fps is MORE than enough with a 7600???

You won't see the difference, so why pay the extra $$? See the point?

And in Call of Duty 2, the 7900 only produces 41 (+ or -) fps in DX9. That is not good enough for a shooter game. So then you're stuck playing in DX7, which is fine, but then a 7600 will give you amazing frames in DX7.

So why spend the extra $$? See the point?


A 7600 should be fine. A 7900GT isn't "good enough" for high rez gaming or playing games at extremely high detail. So it's a waste. Either you go with a 7900GTX at least or a 7600GT. I HIGHLY recommend the 7600, it's well within your budget and has great performance for your games it looks like. Save your money up and put it toward a DX10 card next year ;) 

A 7900 will be better, but it won't handle new games in 3 years any better than a 7600. I say this because you mentioned you like to use your components as long as possible. That's great, but a 7900 will be out of date very soon anyways......so I guess it depends on whether you think the extra $$ is worth it, and whether that will buy you some "insurance" on it lasting longer or not.
November 8, 2006 2:32:06 PM

Quote:
I'm in the process of building a new computer right now and I was wondering which one of these two cards would be better:

1. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

or

2. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

The main differences are that the first one has the 7900 chipset instead of 7600, 256 memory interface instead of 128, and 24 Pixelpipelines instead of 12. The second one has slightly faster core/memory clock speeds.

Now of course the first one is better, but it is also $50.00 (US) more. I don't know too terribly much about video cards, so I'm not sure if the improvements justify dropping another fifty bucks on it. The most involved task whichever card I get will be used for is running new games, such as Neverwinter Nights 2 and Supreme Commander (when it's released in early 2007).

If anybody would like to suggest another video card, that would be great too. I am looking to stay in the $150-$175 price range, but I'll go a bit higher if it's a great deal for the money.

Thanks in advance!

~Brett


Easy solution, get the x1900xt 256 for around $230. Well worth it. For just that little bit extra you get quite a lot more graphical power and (in my opinion) better image quality.
a c 365 U Graphics card
November 8, 2006 2:58:04 PM

Quote:

Easy solution, get the x1900xt 256 for around $230.


The X1900XT 256 is defunct. It has been replaced by the x1950Pro that ranges from $200 - $270.
November 8, 2006 3:04:28 PM

Quote:
And in Call of Duty 2, the 7900 only produces 41 (+ or -) fps in DX9. That is not good enough for a shooter game. So then you're stuck playing in DX7, which is fine, but then a 7600 will give you amazing frames in DX7.

Where did you get these figures? COD2 running in DX7 mode?! The 1st COD used DX8, why would COD2 ever run in DX7? At what resolution and quality settings does a 7900GT only get 41 FPS in COD2? My old 6600GT did better than what you're saying the 7900GT can do. My newer 7900GT plays the game perfectly smooth on high settings at 1280x1024 in full DX9.
Though you might have a point that there'll be no difference between a 7900GT and 7600GT in 3 years as they'll be equally worthless by then.
November 8, 2006 3:07:13 PM

Quote:

Easy solution, get the x1900xt 256 for around $230.


The X1900XT 256 is defunct. It has been replaced by the x1950Pro that ranges from $200 - $270.


Ooops! Forgot!
November 8, 2006 3:28:56 PM

I would base a decision like this on what resolutions you plan on playing games at. If you are playing mostly 1024x768 a 7600GT will be fine to run most games at or near max settings. If you bump up towards 1280x1040 a 7600 should still be fine, but may start to choke a bit. But if you go for 16:10 widescreen (1680x1050) resolutions or higher then I would get the 7900 as the 7600 will most definately start to choke with the eye candy cranked up.
November 8, 2006 4:56:39 PM

Megame, I got those numbers from the review itself.....here, unless I'm missing something? 41 fps @ 1280 rez. On your 6600, I'm assuming you don't have the horsepower to have everything cranked up on DX9? Most people play CoD2 on DX7 because DX9 is brutal on most cards, unless they turn down the settings and play at a lower resolution. DX9 on CoD2 is a pig to be honest, very inefficient engine I think.

BTW, I've tested the 7600 and 7900 myself and benched CoD2, and I've found basically the same results as this chart (within a few % points, depending on system setup). If you turn down the settings, you can squeeze some more frames, but not too much. CoD2 is just bad with DX9 on vid cards. Now, BF2 and HL2 is another story.....a 7600 works absolutely fine on those games. HL2 is a very accessible engine....works well across most machine setups. Top notch engine. But I digress.....

November 8, 2006 5:13:36 PM

Well i think that review is complete bull. I have next to me in my secondary rig a 6800GT that runs COD2 on full detail (DX9 of course) on 1024x768 screen res with no slowdown at all! With the 7600GT being roughly 17% faster than the 6800GT, it should surely run COD2 without any hiccups.
November 8, 2006 5:33:37 PM

Regardless of the varying opinions of COD2 and its various benchmarks, the chart does represent what I was saying before and it explains it really better that I ever could. The 7600 will run great for you at 1024x768 but will start to choke at 1280x1024.

So... as I said before it really depends on what resolution(s) you plan on playing at.
November 8, 2006 5:46:11 PM

OK, you're right, COD2 will probably only get 41 fps with everything maxed at 1280x1024 with 4x FSAA and 16x anisotropic filtering.
However, if you're trying to say that a game that can't be run perfectly at these settings (which last time I checked can be adjusted for optimal play in DX9) is going to have to be run in DX7 mode to be playable......... Wow.
Also, your own chart does show just how much better the 7900GT is for COD2 than the 7600GT, at any resolution.
November 8, 2006 9:30:37 PM

BTW, since you said that your PC is 5 years old, I just wanted to warn you to check your Power Supply and make sure it can handle either of these cards! The 7600gt is way less power hungry than 7900 (7600 doesn't even require extra power; it can just draw off PCIE slot). What kind of PSU do you have?
November 8, 2006 9:37:55 PM

Quote:
Regardless of the varying opinions of COD2 and its various benchmarks, the chart does represent what I was saying before and it explains it really better that I ever could. The 7600 will run great for you at 1024x768 but will start to choke at 1280x1024.

So... as I said before it really depends on what resolution(s) you plan on playing at.

Yep, if you are content with running everything at 1024x768, the 7600gt is a wonderful GPU. I have one and it will run everything I have tried on it at that res. But, if you want to get into higher resolutions (e.g. if I wanted to run in monitor's native res of 19x12) you will run into problems on most games.
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