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2 Q's, 6800XT any good? is my 6600GT dieing?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 10, 2007 12:04:40 AM

Hi, I've been a long time Toms Hardware fan (years now), and decided to register, as I need some help and advice.

Question 1-- Is the Geforce 6800XT 512mb AGP a good card for $130? NO? How about if I overclock it? I know the 8800GTO or whatever is amazing, but I am just looking for something to get me by the next 6 months or so (I would like to play Oblivion in decent settings, without killing my bank account considering the tech that is coming out later this year)

Question 2—Why is my Geforce 6600GT 128mb AGP causing my monitor to flicker on and off quickly, and randomly throughout the day? (this happens at any time, whether in a game, or in windows)


(and if you need more details about my questions\problem, please read on!)

6800XT 512MB!? AGP even, for only $130 after rebate! Is it too good to be true? Even if the rebate doesn't come it, it is still only $150!
I am curious, is this video card any good? I have never noticed it, but by reading the many reviews, I see that 60% gave it a 5 star rating, and it just sounds like I would need to use a different cooling fan ect as it is prone to overheating. Would this be a minor, or major upgrade from a 6600gt? It sounds like the overclockability is great with this one---
BIOSTAR V6802XA52 GeForce 6800XT 512MB 256-bit GDDR2 AGP 4X/8X

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The numbers look good on this card,, but I am not a pro at this stuff, and TOMS GUIDES do NOT mention this card specifically, nor how it would compare to other cards (might be great when overclocked?)
I need advice before I plop down 130 bucks.

This card would mainly be used to get me by for the next 6 months to 1 year, before I am ready to build a new gaming PC.
Yes I am holding off on buying a new mobo, CPU, hard drive, and ram as I am waiting for games and everything else to catch up with VISTA and multi core processors (besides, I bet quad cores will be much cheaper by the time we see Cyrsis) But in the meantime I would like to play ES 4: Oblivion, BF2142, and the upcomming S.T.A.L.K.E.R better then what I can currently do, without going broke..... Right now I play Oblivion in 800x600, with most settings on medium or lower! I need more horsepower!

I would not mind spending $130 on the 6800 XT, IF it is a good upgrade from what I currently have.

My current rig is-
AMD 3200 64 (single core)
1 gig of pc3200 ram (2 sticks of 512mb, but I am only getting 333mhz out of it, since they are 2 different brands, lame huh? But I am hesitant to buying more ram, considering I would need to buy 2 sticks, just to go up 66mhz)
XFX geforce 6600GT 128mb (agp)


OK, now for my 2nd question, and this one is a bit more technical..

The 6600gt I am using now, is actually my 2nd since my first XFX burned out..... My PC froze one night while browsing windows, so I hit the power, waited a few seconds, then powered back up to find out my PC would not post no matter what I tried (or so it seamed)!...... Thinking my motherboard, or CPU burned out, I ordered a $100 mobo\CPU combo (the 3200 AMD 64) as a quick fix...... When it came I was most disapointed to see it was really my VIDEO card that had gone bad, since it still would not post. This MOBO had an onboard video port, which DID work, so I used that while I waited for my replacement.... When I finally got it, everything worked fine, but read on.... I think there is still something wrong here....

Before my first card burned out, my monitor would flicker on and off at random times (did this for a few months leading up to it's death).... Unfortunately, with this replacement card it has started happening again in the past week here! What would cause that? Overheating? Bad monitor? My monitor works fine with the onboard vid, and I am willing to bet my monitor would work fine with some other card, but maybe it is getting bad? It is an older 21inch monitor after all... CRT I think you call em? Ya know, the non flat panels (this thing is a beast)
I must assume, this card is likely to burn out on me too? Is there something I can do to prevent this? The temp of my vid card generally hangs around 53c (which is about right for this card isn't it?)

I hope you experienced fellows can help me out :wink:
March 10, 2007 12:20:08 AM

I had a 6800gt and it was a pretty good card but the 7600 and up are quite a bit better and the 8 series even more so. If you're wanting a card to last around 6 months maybe a 7800 or ati equivalent 1950pro that should be able to run oblivion ok. I ran it on a 2500 athlon and a 6800 and it ran passably, not fast but speed isn't actually that important for oblivion.
Dunno about the monitor, have you tried the card in another system to check it isn't the monitor dying?
Yeah about 50 is right for that card, the 6800s got really hot, mine went to around 80 often but my 7600 never goes above 50.
March 13, 2007 10:55:39 PM

Actually I've had my eye on this--

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$225 for the 1950 pro 512mb sounds very good to me! :D 

Thanks for the advice guys, I am definitely going to stay away from the 6800 (xtreme trash) after some more reading up on the ATI 1950! :p  Toms guide mentioned that the XT version of the 1950 AGP will be coming out real soon, and will be the king of AGP when it does arrive. Think I should wait for that? Or will it cost too much? I see the XTX 1950 is like $400, and there is no way I'd pay that much for an AGP version lol. 8O


My main concern now, is how my monitor still blinks off and on... And yeah it seems to only do this on the 6600gt, (not when I plug into the onboard vid)... I don't know much about voltage settings, but everything looks right from the suggestions I've read here... (oh and yeah, that other 6600gt is fried lol)
Seems to happen a lot until everything warms up a bit. (example- first hour my pc is on, it will happen frequently, but almost never for the rest of the day after that, strange huh?)
!