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Best agp card for my system

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December 10, 2006 5:14:03 PM

Hello,
I was wondering which would be the best performing agp card for my pc, without the "bottleneck" effect coming into play.

My system specs:
CPU Type AMD Sempron, 1866 MHz (11 x 170) 2600+
Motherboard Name Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe (socket A, agp 8x)
Motherboard Chipset nVIDIA nForce2 Ultra 400
System Memory 768 MB (PC3200 DDR SDRAM)

So, is it 6600gt or could I possibly take it higher to 7600gt?

p.s. for now I cannot afford transition to pci-e system

More about : agp card system

December 10, 2006 5:18:31 PM

I would go for a 7600GT if the system had 1gb of RAM.

Something like a 9800Pro or 9800XT seem to be a better fit.
December 10, 2006 5:42:43 PM

well your processor is defiantly old, but it shouldn't hold you back if you get any mainstream or budget video card. if it was me, i would get a 7600GT or a X1950pro AGP. and next time i had to upgrade i would do a total systems upgrade. a 9800 series would be a good fix too. but it wouldn't be a whole lot more powerful then your current video card. idk what your goal is, but i try not to upgrade a part unless i can get at least double the power of the previous part. that way i dont get caught in minuscule upgrades every 4 months, and i can see the performance increase when i finally do upgrade.

your ram should be fine, 1GB would be preferable if you can afford it, but not necessary. just make sure your PSU can handle it if you go for anything above a 7600GT, cuz video cards start getting power hungry after that.
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December 10, 2006 5:47:39 PM

The 6800XT with 512 mb gddr2 ram is a sweet deal for about 125 bucks and it will play all the current games pretty well maxed out.

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

This card has a 256 bit memory bus and gddr2 ram. Most of the other cards in this price range have a 128 bit meory bus and/or slower ddr ram.

My brother is using this card now and playing all the Battle Field games at max settings with good results.

Now, on a side note, I notice you have 768mb ram in an nForce2 mobo. To get the best performance, you want 2 identical ddr ram sticks in there so that it will run in Dual Channel mode. I'm guessing you have three 256mb sticks. You may get better performance by removing one stick and placing the remaining 2 in the proper slots to enable dual channel mode..I have the same mobo and on mine the two ram slots for dual channel are BLUE and are the 2 furthest away from the cpu.

Give it a try and see what you get for a performance change....You can run a benchmark program like 3dmark to see the difference...

Good luck,
Bill
December 10, 2006 6:02:10 PM

i would go for the GF6600GT or the ATI 9800XT the GF6800XT also because i wouldn't get a one of the best AGP cards on that system better get something cheaper and save your cash for the the new rig :) 
what are you planning to play ?
December 10, 2006 6:03:02 PM

Quote:
The 6800XT with 512 mb gddr2 ram is a sweet deal for about 125 bucks and it will play all the current games pretty well maxed out.

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


EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

Don't buy a 6800xt WHATEVER YOU DO! Don't let the 512mb of RAM fool you, it has 8 pixel pipelines (6800GT has 16) and slower clock speeds. It's basically an underclocked 6600GT.
December 10, 2006 6:27:25 PM

Thank you very much for answers.

Actually i have a 512 MB and 256 MB memory modules, however now I am considering purchasing another 512 stick for dual channel.

to almerac: I guess you assumed that my current video card is 6600gt, however it's GeForce MX 440 :) 
I have 300w PSU, however I am planning to connect additional 250w PSU once I get a new card.

I will try to find out whether I can get 6800 xt in my country as it does not seem to be a popular chipset. Otherwise 7600gt sounds very apealing to me and if noone will object that my cpu is way too slow to handle it I probably should purchase it.

Of course, 6600GT is also a safe bet..
December 10, 2006 7:03:00 PM

What country do you live in. Also the Gf 6600GT is the best bet i mean its cheap now and is a good card with GDDR VRAM so it can OC pretty nice its still a good card
Also it should work on your PSU but it would be better if you get a 350W or higher
December 10, 2006 8:51:23 PM

Quote:

EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

Don't buy a 6800xt WHATEVER YOU DO! Don't let the 512mb of RAM fool you, it has 8 pixel pipelines (6800GT has 16) and slower clock speeds. It's basically an underclocked 6600GT.


Maybe I missed something but the 6800XT....512 mb or not, has a 256 bit wide memory bus and all of the 6600GT cards have a 128 bit wide memory bus. Kind of like driving down an 8 lane highway vs a 4 lane hiway....As for the 6800GT, I have that card and it is smokin!....Costs quite a bit more....if you can find one...

http://evga.com/products/moreinfo.asp?pn=256-A8-N387-TX...

$250 us at evga

I don't think I would invest that much in a graphics card on an older machine. For half that price you could get the XT and if you're lucky, with rivatuner, you could unlock some of those extra pixel pipes and have a nice gaming rig for another year or so.
December 11, 2006 6:45:26 AM

Quote:
Thank you very much for answers.

Actually i have a 512 MB and 256 MB memory modules, however now I am considering purchasing another 512 stick for dual channel.

to almerac: I guess you assumed that my current video card is 6600gt, however it's GeForce MX 440 :) 
I have 300w PSU, however I am planning to connect additional 250w PSU once I get a new card.

I will try to find out whether I can get 6800 xt in my country as it does not seem to be a popular chipset. Otherwise 7600gt sounds very apealing to me and if noone will object that my cpu is way too slow to handle it I probably should purchase it.

Of course, 6600GT is also a safe bet..



do you plan on running dual PSU's? if you are, it isn't a problem, mostly just an issue of where to put the other PSU in or around your case, they make dual 20/24 pin cables so you can hook them both to the motherboard so they turn on at the same time.

i had a geforce 4 MX 440 a long time ago ^_^ they overclock really well, was even playing rome total war on it for a bit, what got me was the lack of pixel shaders that left me stuck in the mud on so many games i wanted to play.

ok if you buy anything, please dont buy the 6800XT, ok with ATI "XT" is equal to "GT" for nvidia, and (ATI) "SE" is equal to "XT" (Nvidia), and "XTX/pro" (ATI) is usually around "GTX" (Nvidia). now this doesnt mean every ATI "pro" card is better then any GT or XT card. what it does mean is that those suffixes are used to denote the relative position of that card in that line. example being the slowest to fastest 6800 cards are (in this order)

6800XT, 6800GS, 6800, 6800GT, 6800 Ultra

and in reality a 6800XT is the very bottom of the bucket of 6800's, and is often beaten by a 6600GT. and neither is really worth the money these days. honestly do yourself a good favor, and don't buy a 6800XT even if it looks like a good deal, it is a bastard card (forgive my adjective) and many hold that simply buying that card, is an example of ones own ignorance and willingness to piss your money away. now yes it might be "ok" to play most modern games at 800/600. but i can tell you you cant possibly go lower then a 7600 series geforce and expect good performance, short of a couple of 6800's in SLI (dont even think about using two XT's tho) in modern games, and your processor will be ok. again i would recomend a 7600GT (even a GS would be a good deal, considering they have SM3, and are cheap, and overclock like mad), or a X1950pro, that way, when you do look to upgrade again, you dont have to look at your system and wonder if your CPU is bottlenecking, because it will probably hold a X1950pro back a little bit, but that wont matter because it will likely amount to 2 or 3 FPS. but you will not have to worry about your computer again. and next time you just do a total system rebuild, as opposed to getting a 6800 now, then six months from now realizing that its not hacking it with new games, even on low settings, then you have to buy either another video card, or build a new system. 6800's will simply not hack it for much longer and a XT wont hack it even now. games like oblivion are simply painful, or unplayable on anything lower then then 7600 series. and btw a 7600GS is right between a 6800GS and GT, and a 7600GT beats a 6800 ultra hands down.

sry for the long post but i hope it qualms all your concerns. but please please please, do not buy an XT. anyone that says you should does not really know what they are condemning you to.
December 11, 2006 8:32:08 AM

Quote:

EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

Don't buy a 6800xt WHATEVER YOU DO! Don't let the 512mb of RAM fool you, it has 8 pixel pipelines (6800GT has 16) and slower clock speeds. It's basically an underclocked 6600GT.


Maybe I missed something but the 6800XT....512 mb or not, has a 256 bit wide memory bus and all of the 6600GT cards have a 128 bit wide memory bus. Kind of like driving down an 8 lane highway vs a 4 lane hiway....As for the 6800GT, I have that card and it is smokin!....Costs quite a bit more....if you can find one...

http://evga.com/products/moreinfo.asp?pn=256-A8-N387-TX...

$250 us at evga

I don't think I would invest that much in a graphics card on an older machine. For half that price you could get the XT and if you're lucky, with rivatuner, you could unlock some of those extra pixel pipes and have a nice gaming rig for another year or so.

im sry, dont take this as an insult, a 6800GT is a good card, however paying $250 for it nowadays, is a rip off, the 6000 series is 2 generations old now, and the current $250 king is a 7900GT, the 6800GT is no longer "smoking" it is old, and can be beaten into the ground by a $150 7600GT,
http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics.html?modelx=33&m...

the 6800XT gets beaten by a 6600GT in most benchmarks ive seen, it is not a good card, what it is is a a rip off. it was one when it came out, and it is even more so now, yes it CAN have a 256 bit bus (it also can have a 128 bit one), but it only has 8 pixel shaders the 7600GT has 12 pixel shaders and a 128 bit bus, but the pixel shaders are what gives it the edge, that is like driving down a 8 lane highway instead of a 12 lane one, not the memory bus. in fact much more so then the bus, it doesn't even matter anyways because the ram on the XT is so slow that a 256 bit bus is needed just to make it halfway decent.
and honestly if your going to spend $250 on an AGP card, get a X1950Pro
it slaughters a GT http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics.html?modelx=33&m...
in fact it looks to be twice as powerful as a 6800GT, also note you cannot find the XT on toms hardware charts, and there is a reason for that. its because its not a good gaming card, and again, is a rip off.
December 11, 2006 9:30:36 AM

Quote:
Thank you very much for answers.

Actually i have a 512 MB and 256 MB memory modules, however now I am considering purchasing another 512 stick for dual channel.


What do you mean? nForce2 can run fine in dual channel with mismatched memory. However, I would NOT buy more memory and a video card, this is a sign you are at the right point to replace the system and go PCI Express, especially since decent PCI Express video cards cost less (than AGP flavor), you could even sell your present parts and MAKE MONEY (or save it I mean, a twisted way of looking at it).

Quote:
to almerac: I guess you assumed that my current video card is 6600gt, however it's GeForce MX 440 :) 
I have 300w PSU, however I am planning to connect additional 250w PSU once I get a new card.


What I would do is try to sell the system whole for $200, or still not do what you're thinking of.

Quote:
I will try to find out whether I can get 6800 xt in my country as it does not seem to be a popular chipset.
You must move. New country. Leave the old system behind, it is too heavy to carry very far. :tongue:

Quote:
Otherwise 7600gt sounds very apealing to me and if noone will object that my cpu is way too slow to handle it I probably should purchase it.

Of course, 6600GT is also a safe bet..


Your CPU is not too slow, but the cost difference is enough to make replacing the mobo and CPU even more appealing considering you'd buy memory too. 6600GT is too slow for modern gaming, if you arent picky about eyecandy it would work but you'd want to replace it again too soon. One compromise might be 7600GS or GTS, one with better memory like at least 400MHz/DDR800 if not better (some GTS are 700/1400 IIRC) and overclock it (after you get settled into a different country).

If you take a GPS and keep in touch we can track you and make bets on ETA.
December 11, 2006 12:39:32 PM

Wow...I knew I'd take a bit of a beating for recommending the 6800XT but jeesh. Guys, I'm pretty sure the OP is on a tight budget and has limited resources....Why else would you cobble together a system with 2 powersupplies and mismatched ram.

I know what its like to play BF1942 on a duron 900 with a geForce2 MX400 with 64 mb ram....I get the feeling that the OP isn't a so called "enthusiast", just someone who would like a chance to play a few of todays games.

Anyway, Its all good info....And, yes, the 7600GS looks like a good value at around $125 US....Since THWG doesn't have any reviews of the 6800XT here are a few links....Not the same card, and they are kind of old...big surprise, the card is old...but hey, so is nForce2....

http://forums.tweakguides.com/showthread.php?t=1383

http://www.guru3d.com/article/content/286/

http://xtreview.com/review92.htm

Its too bad there isn't a way to build a virtual system and bench it on-line to see how some of these older/less popular components rate....

Good luck.....I've got to go get pwned/beaten into the ground in BF2 on my pathetically old AGP 6800 gaming rig...playing a 1600X1200, All settings maxed, by a bunch of teenagers.....See you on IHOP server.....International House of Pwnage :D 
December 11, 2006 1:32:22 PM

The 6800 XT is not a good deal. The 256 bit bus doesn't make up for the measly 8 pipelines and low clocks.

A 6600 GT will beat it in some cases.

Best bet on the cheap in AGP is the X800 XL... 16 pipelines, a 256-bit bus, and you can pick them up for under $100 on ebay last time I looked. Almost as fast as the 7600 GT, it will eat a 6800 XT alive.

If you need a new card, 7600 GS is probably the best bet. 7600 GT isn't bad if you have the money, the CPU might bottleneck it a bit compared to other CPUs, but you'll still see gains over the 7600 GS on that CPU.
December 11, 2006 1:55:37 PM

Agreed....ati x800 is the way to go....even a new one can be had for around 140 bucks.
December 11, 2006 2:27:01 PM

Quote:
Its too bad there isn't a way to build a virtual system and bench it on-line to see how some of these older/less popular components rate....

Yup, that would be very handy..

Anyways I think that I have found a good deal: used Asus 6800LE for half the price of 7600GT with all pipelines unlockable (16/6), so its preformance should be near 6800GT. I doubt that my system would be able to take advantage of a better card, anyway.
a b U Graphics card
December 11, 2006 9:19:56 PM

16 unlocked pipes and no artifacts? BTW, A Stock X800XL is just as fast as a 6800GT.
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