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The Best Gaming Video Cards for the Money: April 2007

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 9, 2007 12:46:44 PM

Detailed video card specifications and reviews are great - that is, if you have the time to do the research. But at the end of the day, what a gamer needs is the best video card within a certain budget, and that's what we're going to give you.
April 9, 2007 12:48:05 PM

Link not working. :?
April 9, 2007 2:05:11 PM

Works fine here. Are you in the UK? People in the UK have reported problems like yours before.
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April 9, 2007 2:16:38 PM

Yeah im in the UK and it doesn't work :(  is there anyway around this?
April 9, 2007 2:24:44 PM

What about the 7950GT AGP from XFX? Newegg has it for under $200.00.
April 9, 2007 2:26:07 PM

Quote:
Works fine here. Are you in the UK? People in the UK have reported problems like yours before.

Works now. :) 
April 9, 2007 2:28:07 PM

Prozac26 how did you get it working, its still not working for me
a b U Graphics card
April 9, 2007 2:29:13 PM

Good call warning about the X1650 pro GDDR2 trend! It started with the AGP's and now the PCI-e version also. Make sure it's a GDDR3 version if you buy a X1650 pro.

Just felt it worth mentioning a current hot bargain buy, even though it's USA only and a $30 rebate. The X1950GT is now priced like a X1650XT or 7600GT, if you dont mind rebates: Fine card for $$115 shipped AR. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Of course, their cheapest X1950 pro is only $30 more, also after rebate.
April 9, 2007 2:30:23 PM

Quote:
What about the 7950GT AGP from XFX? Newegg has it for under $200.00.


Not a great deal with the much faster X1950 XT as low as $200 on newegg as well.
a b U Graphics card
April 9, 2007 2:32:34 PM

Quote:
What about the 7950GT AGP from XFX? Newegg has it for under $200.00.

The 7950GT and 7900GS AGP's are brand new and probably surfaced after this article was submitted. Keep an eye out on the clock speeds as the trend is (like the X1950XT AGP) is to lower AGP clock speeds. For $200 a reference clocked 7950GT would be a good buy. It's not as good as the X1950XT, but priced a little better.
a b U Graphics card
April 9, 2007 2:33:17 PM

lol, didn't know you were here yet. Ya beat me again.
April 9, 2007 3:35:47 PM

Quote:
Good call warning about the X1650 pro GDDR2 trend! It started with the AGP's and now the PCI-e version also. Make sure it's a GDDR3 version if you buy a X1650 pro.


I'm trying to determine if this warning is because performance is 10-15% lower, or if it's because the DDR2 cards have some serious problems.

My old system (2.8 prescott with 9600XT) could do windowed games behind a fullscreen video and not choke. New system (c2d 4300 with 1650pro ddr2) starts to play the video, chops, then freezes. Happens often, but not frequently. Tried a 1550pro ddr2 as well, it happens more frequently there. Tried with both official CCC drivers and omega drivers.

Should I keep suspecting the video card is at fault or look towards other devices? Why would everything be fine under the old system?

Thanks.
April 9, 2007 4:08:07 PM

Quote:

I'm trying to determine if this warning is because performance is 10-15% lower, or if it's because the DDR2 cards have some serious problems.


Lower performance. DDR2 by itself doesn't have any stability issues.

That's not to say you didn't end up with a bad card though. But it might be driveres, it might be your new mobo (or mobo drivers)... it might be alot of things.
April 9, 2007 4:50:01 PM

I must say I've been pretty impressed with the x1950GT's performance, too. One of my friends bought one not too long ago, and for a card that's selling for just a tad over $100, it looks good. If I was building a new budget system, I'd definitely consider it.
April 9, 2007 5:33:46 PM

Looking at that heirarchy chart made me laugh, I went up a whole 12 tiers from my old Radeon 9550 to my new card. :lol: 
April 9, 2007 5:36:55 PM

RV570 is 80nm NOT 90nm!!



















that's the X1950pro for the ones scratching their heads.
April 11, 2007 7:38:19 PM

Great article. I look forward to this each month. If I were buying a new gaming desktop, then I would go for the 7600GS < $100. Using a 19 inch flat panel, you get respectable performance for most every game, yet you reserve the $$$ needed to upgrade to a mid range DX10 card, say in january of 2008. In 12 months they might start offering better drivers to support these cards for use with Vista. But it is great to see nice buys available for GPU's and CPU's these days.
April 27, 2007 8:50:10 PM

So, any plans to incorporate the 8600GTS and 8600GT?
April 27, 2007 8:52:20 PM

Yep, I'll mention them in the heiarchy chart.

They certainly won't be recommended buys though... too expensive.
April 29, 2007 4:26:41 PM

Hey that R570 core has 12 ROP's and i didnt really look at the rest but that caught my eye.GOOD chart cleeve.
!