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When will we see AGP DX10 cards?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 25, 2007 5:56:07 AM

When should we see AGP DirectX10 cards, for those of us still stuck with AGP? (I have a decent setup, AMD 64 dual processor with 3GB RAM and lotsa SATA disk, but have AGP.)

I really don't need DX10, no hard core gamers, but I upgraded my 3 home machines and desktop work machine to Vista about 6-8 weeks after it came out. Not a great choice, I have 3 Nvidia and 1 ATI graphics cards (all probably 2-3 year old vintage) and all of them are still not stable with Vista. So if I can get a reasonably priced AGP DX10 card, I will probably bite the bullet soon.

This of course is assuming that the DX10 card will have stable Vista drivers. Is this a bad assumption?

I am really ticketd at NVidia, they are not going to release a Vista driver past the one last October or so (for my GeForce 5700 that I just bought new last year, though it probably was released 1-2 years ago). All of my machine spontaneously reboot most nights when not in use, and I have to assume its the graphics driver since they are the most likely culprit in general, and especially since its well known that video drivers for DX10 are not very good yet.

I upgraded about 3-4 months too soon. Oh, well, live and learn. I did it in part because I can manage logins better, have a single home director for users no matter what machine they are on in my house, and other things (plus security). But it turns out that after I got it and read more, you seem to need a domain setup (rather than just a workgroup) for these features like roaming profiles, and I don't want to go through the hassle of this and dedicate a machine to it.

More about : agp dx10 cards

May 25, 2007 6:32:44 AM

They most likely will not make an AGP DX10 card because AGP is outdated. Even if they did they would be more expensive then their pcie equivalent and you would be better off buying a pcie rig.
May 25, 2007 6:38:52 AM

Quote:
They most likely will not make an AGP DX10 card because AGP is outdated. Even if they did they would be more expensive then their pcie equivalent and you would be better off buying a pcie rig.


They are dewd ATi's gonna bring the 26XX and the 24XX series to AGPx8... :D  :twisted: :lol: 
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May 25, 2007 6:43:18 AM

Really?! Sorry then i was under the impression that AGP is obsolete or something. The AGP equivalents should be just as good eh?
May 25, 2007 6:52:00 AM

I have to agree with the majority of forum members here that AGP is dead, and that probably no one will release a DX 10 card for AGP. Simply, it's going to be severely limited by the low bandwidth of the AGP format. And the DX 10 standard is designed to use the extra bandwidth and capabilities of PCIe 1.5 & 2.0 .

Putting a DX 10 in an AGP rig is like sticking a Lambourgini engine in an old Ford Pinto. Yeah, it has the pontential for high speed, but there's no way the car can handle it. Hence, it's nothing but a waste.
May 25, 2007 11:08:48 AM

Quote:
Simply, it's going to be severely limited by the low bandwidth of the AGP format.


thats what they said when the 6800 cards and the x1900 were being released in pci-e.... now look...

got the 7800 in AGP, got the X1950 in AGP...and they still dont use up all the bandwidth available on the AGP port.

Even though it is out dated, there is still a pretty big market for it, which is why they will still keep making it, till its not worth the money spent.

heck even im using an AGP card myself, and it performs better than some pci-e systems iv come accross with a similar set up.

This however would be my last agp set up because I have agree that the higher end dx10 cards will most probably need more bandwith than is available with AGP, but the lower/mid end dx10 cards??
a c 365 U Graphics card
May 25, 2007 6:40:19 PM

Quote:

They are dewd ATi's gonna bring the 26XX and the 24XX series to AGPx8... :D  :twisted: :lol: 


Actually, it's not ATI that's going to offer an AGP version of the 26xx and 24xx. It is Sapphire that has decided to adapt those GPUs to an AGP interface.
May 26, 2007 10:57:35 AM

Quote:

They are dewd ATi's gonna bring the 26XX and the 24XX series to AGPx8... :D  :twisted: :lol: 


Actually, it's not ATI that's going to offer an AGP version of the 26xx and 24xx. It is Sapphire that has decided to adapt those GPUs to an AGP interface.


ATI said that their GPU could be used in AGP format. Its up to the other compnaies if they wont to use that to make AGP cards. So its not sapphire that is adapting it to AGP. ATI had already made it possible.
May 27, 2007 4:53:15 AM

Quote:
Actually, it's not ATI that's going to offer an AGP version of the 26xx and 24xx. It is Sapphire that has decided to adapt those GPUs to an AGP interface.


OK, I found a very recent bit of info on this: http://www.xbitlabs.com/news/video/display/20070521054545.html. The article notes:
Quote:
it is unlikely that the new graphics cards will allow them to play modern games, as microprocessors on the vast majority of AGP systems are outdated for contemporary games[\quote]
So here is my question for those GPU experts among you: how true is this likely to be for my media pc? It has a GigaByte GA-K8NS-939 that has 3GB of DDR400 memory. It has a dual-core AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ running at 2GHz. And of course AGP.

I am not interested in the absolute highest frames/second on games, just hope to take advantage some of DX10 if possible. The automobile metaphor above was cute, but does anyone really know the bandwidth requirements well on this or is that just a hard-core gamer poo-pooing something that is not top end (no offense intended, this is an honest question).

If DX10 would have marginal or no benefit over DX9 on my system above with AGP, then I will not wait any longer and get a medium-high DX9 card that is known to have stable Vista drivers. (Any recommendations from the peanut gallery on this?)

Thanks in advance, much, for any info here.
May 27, 2007 7:29:30 AM

OK, let me clarify a couple of things..

I don't own a top of the line rig. I have a 3.0Ghz P4 with a 7800 GS on a Asus 478 mobo with 1 GB DDR400 RAM. So, I am speaking from the mid-lower end spetrum. And while I could further upgrade to a 7950 GT or a X1950 PRO AGP, the improvements would be marginal at best (probably 10-20% max). This would be about the same improvement as moving to a PCIe version of the same card (though the card costs much less). AGP versions have been able to keep up (mostly) by using more (or faster) RAM then their PCIe counterparts. Since it can load more texture info per map, it doesn't need to use the bandwidth as heavily.

However, this changes with DX10. DX10 uses a lot of 'video streaming' techiniques to add and modify effects 'on the fly', which results in more spectacular and smooth visuals, but uses much more bandwidth than comparable DX9 equivalents. This is due to the 'Unified Shader Architecture' that is specified in the DX10/Vista requirements. Plus AGP uses a parallel bus design, whereas the PCIe uses an asynchronus serial bus, with seperate I/O lines. Hence, PCIe can sift through a LOT more data than AGP. A 4x PCIe port has something like twice the bandwidth of an AGP 8X. And a lot of PCIe mobo are offering 2 16x SLI/CF slots on their boards.
May 27, 2007 7:45:16 AM

Hey if you want you could buy a motherboard that has pci-e and AGP x8 (like me), if you were to do this I believe that you would save money since it seems that all the new graphics card that come to AGP are all ridiculously high priced.

heres a link to a motherboard that supports agp and pci-e and its only $67:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
May 27, 2007 3:55:29 PM

Quote:
OK, I found a very recent bit of info on this: http://www.xbitlabs.com/news/video/display/20070521054545.html. The article notes:it is unlikely that the new graphics cards will allow them to play modern games, as microprocessors on the vast majority of AGP systems are outdated for contemporary games

So here is my question for those GPU experts among you: how true is this likely to be for my media pc? It has a GigaByte GA-K8NS-939 that has 3GB of DDR400 memory. It has a dual-core AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ running at 2GHz. And of course AGP.

I am not interested in the absolute highest frames/second on games, just hope to take advantage some of DX10 if possible. The automobile metaphor above was cute, but does anyone really know the bandwidth requirements well on this or is that just a hard-core gamer poo-pooing something that is not top end (no offense intended, this is an honest question).

If DX10 would have marginal or no benefit over DX9 on my system above with AGP, then I will not wait any longer and get a medium-high DX9 card that is known to have stable Vista drivers. (Any recommendations from the peanut gallery on this?)

Thanks in advance, much, for any info here.
It's only a matter of guessing until DX10 games actually come out, but I would expect that they will be rather CPU-demanding, and an X2 3800+ will probably not cut it. I guess you could look at getting an Opteron 185 (essentially an FX-60) to put in the board if you wanted to get some more life from socket 939, but I wouldn't personally, as you can get a new Intel C2D or AMD socket AM2 motherboard and processor for less than the price of the Opty 185. I would definitely look into the Intel version ASRock Dual-VSTA board and a low-end C2D like the E4300, that would support AGP and PCIe, as well as let you still use your DDR RAM (AM2 doesn't support DDR, only DDR2), if you were willing to spend enough to replace the CPU. Otherwise, I'd leave it alone and get a decent AGP card.

As for the AGP vs PCIe bandwidth, I think that only comes into play with very fast GPUs like the GF8800GTX. Check this article out about PCIe scaling, and remember that AGP8x has a bandwidth of 2.0 GB/s as a point of reference. You should not count the PCIe's duplex bandwidth, just the single direction bandwidth, since the video card is primarily a uniderectional data flow (CPU -> GPU). All that said, they will probably not release the very best cards in AGP, but I doubt the bandwidth would cripple a moderate card.

The best AGP video card available now is the X1950XT, only available from GECUBE as far as I know. The next best, and available from many vendors, AGP card is the X1950Pro. I'd go for the X1950Pro myself, it's a huge upgrade over a GF5xxx series, and you can snag one from HIS for $185 after rebate.
May 27, 2007 3:57:40 PM

Quote:
Hey if you want you could buy a motherboard that has pci-e and AGP x8 (like me), if you were to do this I believe that you would save money since it seems that all the new graphics card that come to AGP are all ridiculously high priced.

heres a link to a motherboard that supports agp and pci-e and its only $67:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Unfortunately, that motherboard isn't made anymore, and they go for more than $67 now (notice Newegg is out of stock with no ETA) Otherwise, it would be a great solution.
May 28, 2007 6:38:09 PM

Muchos gracias, Senor_Bob!

I decided that the wait for DX10 mid-range AGP cards is not worth it for me. We are not hard core gamers, though I thought in the long run it would be nice. Well, you can't optimize everything in life. If they were availble now, I would not have a problem paying $300-400 for one. But, given how flaky the Vista graphis are (reboot at least once a day, usually when not in use, and also graphics freezes in dimmed mode on some apps sometimes), I am not willing to wait.

So I have ordered the X1950Pro, as per your suggestion.

Even though it is a reasonable performance machine (for all but hardcore gamers), maybe even medium-high, I probably won't get DX10 for it, a $200 video card needs to last me quite a while.

Time to start thinking/saving for a quad core Penryn machine next summer (or AMD if they can match/beat it) --- the better streaming instruction support sounds like it will really help a lot of multimedia-related applications, and I think 4 cores is the minimum one would want for a machine used frequently for multiple purposes like this one (recording 1-2 shows at a time often, playing some games or watching TV, etc).

Thanks again for the feedback everyone. Next Sunday's project is to get the video card installed and up and running. I will probably un-install and then re-instal all video software (Nero Ultra 7, BeyondTV, etc) because it may have configured itself to the old NVidia card, right? Or is this unnecessary? (I should check the latest versions/builds anyway of these, just cause Vista bugs are being fixed all the time.) My machine came with a version of Nero Ultra specialized for my dual core AMD CPU, and I can see ShowTime using both CPUs. If I download the latest update, is it likely to take advantage of dual cores, or would I need to re-install the (year -old) CD then update to ensure dual cores are utilized for playing DVDs etc? Or by now does any reasonable video playback program automatically take advantage of dual cores if it finds them there?

Any comments/feedback on my video playback assumptions/questions, anyone? Thanks in advance.
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