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Short Term Upgrade - X1650 PRO or 7600GT

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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February 15, 2007 3:03:25 AM

Going to be building a new PC in the next few months, but in the mean time, I want to upgrade the video on my secondary machine.
Don't want to pay over $150, and after doing some homework, I've narrowed it down to two cards that the reveiews say are about equivalent. The difference that's giving me trouble is the memory of the two cards...

X1650 Pro is 512mb of GDDR2 @ 590/1380

7600GT is 256mb of GDDR3 @ 580/1400

All the other important specs on the cards are equivalent, so the question is, Is it better to have more slower memory or less faster memory? :tongue:

P.S. I am brand independant, so please check your fanboi-ism at the door. [lol]
February 15, 2007 3:28:07 AM

My short term video card I got was a 7300GT and i'm happy with it. Its not gonna blow you away, but every game i've thrown at it has played on Medium settings perfectly...buttery smooth. If your looking for a High setting, short term card I suppose the 7600GT is a better buy for you. I personally can't afford to pay $100+ for a video card that I know i'm only gonna make good use of for maybe a year.
February 15, 2007 3:35:59 AM

X1650 XT is equivalent to the 7600 GT.

The X1650 PRO is equivalent to the 7600 GS...

In both instances, the X1650's are a bit faster, and better in newer, tough titles like Oblivion.
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February 15, 2007 3:40:13 AM

Oh it'll get used for more than a year. It will still be in my backup comp. After I build the new one, I'll use *it* for gaming and the backup will be for business or watching movies or other less demanding things.
February 15, 2007 3:48:06 AM

If it's the X1650 Pro vs. the 7600GT, I'll take the 7600GT. Check the prices at your retailer to see what the best deal is going to be.
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2007 4:27:44 AM

The question you posed "Is it better to have more slower memory or less faster memory?" The memory is 20 mhz slower on the ATI but you get TWICE as much of it. You can OC that 20 mhz, nothing will double the RAM on the NVidia. Now, whether that's relevent in this case I don't know, faster doesn't always mean FASTER (ie P4 v A64), but I thought I should answer the question for you.
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2007 4:36:25 AM

Main issue for your comparison IMO is the GDDR2 vs GDDR3, but I find it interesting the GDDR2 is clocked so fast on the X1650P. Usually the GDDR2 Pro is significantly slower than the top GDDR3 version (which is effective difference of 800 vs 1400-1600mhz).

EDIT: BTW, where did you get the X1650Pro was GDDR2? That speed is basically the stock speed of the GDDR3 model (700/1400). The GDDR2 models are closer to 500/1000.

The GF7600GT would easily be the better of the two in that case, with the very occasional exception.

Got with the GF7600GT IMO.

EDIT: Even with the GDDR3 the X1650Pro is still the lesser of the two, but they are closer than before, not that it changes my reco.
February 15, 2007 4:36:49 AM

Actually I meant more the difference between GDDR2 and GDDR3. I don't know how much real world difference there would be.

If there isn't much difference, I'd definitely go for the higher amount of memory, but as GDDR3 was such an advertised selling point, it makes me wonder if the difference is significant enough.
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2007 5:17:26 AM

GDDR3, like DDR and DDR2, allows them to run their memory faster, it does not make it faster. If you remember a few years back when DDR2 was launched it was running at 400 MHZ, same as DDR, but performed worse because it had slower timings. DDR2 has now surpassed the speeds DDR could reach and vastly improved it's timings, but if you put DDR and DDR2 at the same speeds they would perform the same. Using GDDR3 makes them sound faster, but all it does is provide them with RAM that will be able to run faster. You don't know what speed the GDDR3 that NVidia is using has be binned for so it may not even OC better than the GDDR2. Hope that made sense.
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2007 7:01:57 AM

Quote:
GDDR3, like DDR and DDR2, allows them to run their memory faster, it does not make it faster. If you remember a few years back when DDR2 was launched it was running at 400 MHZ, same as DDR, but performed worse because it had slower timings. DDR2 has now surpassed the speeds DDR could reach and vastly improved it's timings, but if you put DDR and DDR2 at the same speeds they would perform the same. Using GDDR3 makes them sound faster, but all it does is provide them with RAM that will be able to run faster. You don't know what speed the GDDR3 that NVidia is using has be binned for so it may not even OC better than the GDDR2. Hope that made sense.


You didnt mention bandwidth.

I'm not sure what you are referring to. The only way GDDR2 and GDDR3 would have different performance at the same speed would be if one was 128 bit and the other 256, which is possible, I haven't memorized the specs on those cards so they may be different in that respect. Is that what you are talking about?
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2007 7:20:58 AM

Quote:
bandwidth is higher for each gen of ddr;and that is substantial in gaming.

when i buy a card anymore my bottom line is always 256mb interface.Why have limitations,after i had the 7900gt i made up my mind to have the best capabilities without selling a nut.The visuals are worth it to me.


by "256mb interface" I'm guessing you mean 256bit, thus answering my question to you with a yes. Ok, yes, I acknowledge that I did not take into consideration 128bit memory vs 256bit memory, however those interfaces are not exclusive to either GDDR2 or GDDR3 and I can not say which either card has without looking them up. To the OP, just look at the VGA charts and see where the cards rank. They also have "bang for buck" articles every few months so you can check those out too.
February 15, 2007 12:50:37 PM

Quote:

It's a tie between the X1650 PRO and the 7600 GT for the best ~$175 card. (I've found them both for about $120)


I Wrote that article, and I can tell you from the horse's mouth, it is a mistake.

Surprised no one caught it sooner. I'll have it fixed on the site, but trust me... it's X1650 XT vs the 7600 GT.

The X1650 PRO is inferior to both.

And by the way: if you've found a 7600 GT for $120, I doubt it's AGP... it's PCI express. The part of the guide you linked to was the AGP section.
February 15, 2007 5:38:11 PM

Newegg has a 7600gt for 89.99 after rebate see link

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

EVGA 256-P2-N615-TX GeForce 7600GT 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card - Retail

5.64 shipping, biulding a system for a friend using one next week. I believe this is the best deal
February 15, 2007 6:57:37 PM

Guess I should have checked his link to bad, but a 1650xt AGP for $135 looks like a great deal to me as well
February 15, 2007 9:01:42 PM

Yes, the 7600GT I'm looking at is AGP. Both cards are 128bit bus.

So, a 1650 PRO with 512mb memory is inferior to a 7600 GT with 256mb memory. And what I want to look for is a 1650 XT with 256mb to be comparable to the 7600 GT. And the difference between GDDR2 and GDDR3 is in potential for OC'ing and not any faster at the same clock.

Have I got that mostly correct now? [lol]
February 15, 2007 9:29:42 PM

And if you want to see the specifics of what I'm looking at at the moment...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductCompare.asp?Catego...

And based on the issue of the bus width, I've added another card to consideration, but I'm a bit doubtful. In the same price range is a 6800XT 512mb with the 256 bus, but it's so many models back, that I hadn't really been considering it.

--D
February 15, 2007 9:34:03 PM

I'm gonna say 7600GT just because that's what I got (although I got it for 80 bucks) and it really kicks butt in all the games I've played.
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2007 9:39:41 PM

Get the $135 His iceQ X1650XT. Nice quiet high performance cooler, Turbo clock speeds, and the best performance you'll find in AGP for $135. Only a $200 X1950 pro will beat it.

Plus, it's aweful purty to look at:



These charts will show you how a X1650Xt and OC'ed X1650XT compare to the X1950 pro, 7600GT, X1650 pro and 7600GS.
http://www.digit-life.com/articles2/digest3d/index0612....
a b U Graphics card
February 15, 2007 9:47:34 PM

I think Newegg is off on the 512MB and 256MB clock speeds for the ice Q Turbo. According to the HIS website, the 256MB one is clocked 630/1460 and the 512MB one is lower at 600/1460. Link: http://www.hisdigital.com/html/product_ov.php?id=276&vi...

Newegg has those two reversed.
February 15, 2007 10:15:42 PM

When comparing 2 cards of the same caliber (7600GT vs X1650XT, or 7600GS vs X1650pro), the extra money spent on a 512MB version will only amount to a couple FPS. It's really not worth it unless you're talking about highend cards (even then it's still questionable). That being said, a 7600GT will beat a X1650pro whether the X1650pro has 512 or 256MB of RAM.

Now, on to that 6800XT...

The 7600GT will be much better, because faster core and mem speeds, along with it's architecture, more than make up for it's crippled 128bit interface.
February 15, 2007 10:24:09 PM

Sounds like you have a thorough understanding now. :) 

The 6800 XT might have a 256-bit bus, but it's crippled with 8 pipelines.

The 7600 GT has 12 pipelines.

X1650 XT doesn't really have traditional pipelines, it has 24 pixel shaders and 8 TMUs. All you have to know is that the X1650 XT is equal to a 7600 GT in performance (overall).

Older cards that are almost as good as the 7600 GT and X1650 XT in AGP are the 6800 GT, and The X800 XL.
The 6800 Ultra and X800 XT are about as good as the 7600 GT/X1650 XT.
February 16, 2007 5:00:49 PM

I think either X1650XT or 7600GT would be fine. If your budget is $150, you might also consider the new X1950GT which goes for about $140 shipped after a $10 rebate at newegg.com. However, make sure your current psu can handle it.
February 16, 2007 5:11:42 PM

The OP's talking AGP, not PCI-E.
February 16, 2007 10:26:50 PM

Yeah, I thought about that right after I made my post but did not see the OP make reference to which interface he was using. Didn't realize until I followed the OP's link to TH's test of AGP cards.
February 17, 2007 12:18:56 AM

are the 1650XT or 7600GT better than the 7800GS?
February 17, 2007 12:59:12 AM

All three are very, very close.
February 17, 2007 1:39:18 AM

well that answered my question I have a 6800 OC and was looking to go ATI for vista reasons,

looks like the 1650XT is the way to go as far as performance and price goes.
a b U Graphics card
February 17, 2007 2:31:50 AM

I found it interesting in your testing that while the 7600GT often had a little average fps lead, the 7800GS often had a little lead in the minimum fps.
February 17, 2007 2:32:28 AM

If you aren't going to be gaming on it for long then get whichever one is cheaper and use the money you saved to buy an even better one later.
February 17, 2007 2:46:56 AM

Quote:
If you aren't going to be gaming on it for long then get whichever one is cheaper and use the money you saved to buy an even better one later.

I will be gaming a few games ..I.E. Madden 07, W.O.W and a couple others I like my 6800 but with vista it doesnt work well with madden (kicking game locks up,) I can run madden and wow maxed out on my 6800 OC and these are a step above that one easily, so I will get the ATI at the cheapest price.
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