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2x 7300GT or 1x 8600GT??

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June 19, 2007 8:52:54 PM

I can't seem to find much definitive info on SLI vs single video cards so I guess I just gotta ask. For the same price (~$130) I can get either setup listed in the post title. I'll be using XP for a bit for obvious reasons so DX10 support isn't all-important. (I figure I spend not-a-lot now for what works now and when I decide to upgrade to Vista/DX10 I'll get something more expensive.)

Right now I run a single 6600GT and I was thinking about getting a second to SLI that...but I doubt it'll be the improvement I want. I'm figuring that, for the price, either of these setups will kick my current one's ass. Oh also I tend to play most games in windowed mode (at whatever available res is one less than 1280x1024).

Anyhow, thoughts?

Thx,
SH

Current Setup:
WinXP 64
Athlon64 3000
1GB RAM
6600GT

More about : 7300gt 8600gt

June 19, 2007 9:28:37 PM

8800gt

Less power and SLI'ed lower cards cant compete with a more powerful single one.
June 19, 2007 9:31:14 PM

Please don't even consider 2 x 7300. If you have to, get the 8600. If you can spend an extra US $100 get an 8800 GTS 320, providing the rest of your system is decent enough to take advantage of it.

Also worth considering with a few extra $ but cheaper than a 8800, a 19xx.
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June 19, 2007 9:39:55 PM

If you are looking for mediocre or less performance those that you mentioned will provide.8800gts is on sale at newegg for 259$ and 1950 pro is cheaper than that I believe.Either will run rings around 7300 or 8600 SLI or otherwise.
June 19, 2007 9:48:17 PM

Thanks for the quick replies.

Let me reiterate that I'm looking to spend not-a-lot right now so I can afford a better card when I upgrade to Vista in a few months. I am well aware that doubling my budget will yield a better card, but it's not going to happen. Besides that, the $260 card now will cost half that when I'm ready to upgrade to Vista (if not less) and the $260 at that time will run circles around the 8800 or 19xx. And of course, looking at the marginal benefits over what I have now, anything will run circles around my 6600GT.

I guess I should have posed my question from more of a "budget" standpoint, my apologies.

So it seems like a single 8600GT is gonna be better than an SLI 7300 setup? That's mainly what I was looking to hear. Any other thoughts on good option in the price range?

Thx again,
SH
June 19, 2007 9:54:27 PM

One card will always be better choice over two cards of the same price.
June 19, 2007 10:00:55 PM

the 8600GT offers preformance on par with the 1950pro and x1900GT, id get that any day over an SLi 6600GT as you mentioned, and over the x19xx cards, as the 8600 supports DX10, and as shown in games making use of advanced pixel shading the 8600GT itself can pull ahead of the 1900XT, as seen in R6:V where the 8600GT is faster, and you can bet money that cry engine2 like Unreal3 engine will be shader intensive and make the 48shaders of the 1900 cry while the 64 shaders the 8600GT has, well 32x2 will run it at med to high settings in DX10 mode, dont let them fool you, the 8600GT and 8600GTS are beats in any shader intense game, its in texture intense that it fails. Also note a common trend where seeing is motion blur and such replacing AA in games as seen with the Unreal3 engine where you cant force AA to even work.
June 19, 2007 10:06:41 PM

Quote:
Thanks for the quick replies.

Let me reiterate that I'm looking to spend not-a-lot right now so I can afford a better card when I upgrade to Vista in a few months. I am well aware that doubling my budget will yield a better card, but it's not going to happen. Besides that, the $260 card now will cost half that when I'm ready to upgrade to Vista (if not less) and the $260 at that time will run circles around the 8800 or 19xx. And of course, looking at the marginal benefits over what I have now, anything will run circles around my 6600GT.

I guess I should have posed my question from more of a "budget" standpoint, my apologies.

So it seems like a single 8600GT is gonna be better than an SLI 7300 setup? That's mainly what I was looking to hear. Any other thoughts on good option in the price range?

Thx again,
SH


wait lemme get this right....you dont have vista and plan to upgrade ur card when you do eventually go to it.

sooo whyyyy are you looking to get the 8600???? its a shit dx10 card, and not exactly wonderfull at dx9 aswell. you may aswell save some cash and get a 7600GT or for a little more a x1950 pro. atleast you can game on dx9 games with those.

Quote:
the 8600GT offers preformance on par with the 1950pro and x1900GT


what are you talking about? the 8600GT does not compete with x1950 pro (except in oblivion), the GTS comes very close, but not the GT

link: http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=8409

or http://www.firingsquad.com/hw/7871/NVIDIA_GeForce_8600_...
June 19, 2007 10:11:20 PM

he can game with an 8600GT alot better than with a 7600gt or a 1950pro the 2nd you start using shaders and vertexs on up comming games based on the unreal3 engine as we saw with rainbow six vegas where the G84 kicked some serious ass thanks to its raw shader power, also do not asusme the 7600GT is faster tahn the 8600GT, Legion hardware is the only site to say this, they are new to the reviewing scene and this is the only forum i visit where they take that review seriously, every other forum holds it as a joke more than anything, stop spreading fud.
June 19, 2007 10:54:25 PM

Quote:
Thanks for the quick replies.

Let me reiterate that I'm looking to spend not-a-lot right now so I can afford a better card when I upgrade to Vista in a few months. I am well aware that doubling my budget will yield a better card, but it's not going to happen. Besides that, the $260 card now will cost half that when I'm ready to upgrade to Vista (if not less) and the $260 at that time will run circles around the 8800 or 19xx. And of course, looking at the marginal benefits over what I have now, anything will run circles around my 6600GT.

I guess I should have posed my question from more of a "budget" standpoint, my apologies.

So it seems like a single 8600GT is gonna be better than an SLI 7300 setup? That's mainly what I was looking to hear. Any other thoughts on good option in the price range?

Thx again,
SH


wait lemme get this right....you dont have vista and plan to upgrade ur card when you do eventually go to it.

sooo whyyyy are you looking to get the 8600???? its a **** dx10 card, and not exactly wonderfull at dx9 aswell. you may aswell save some cash and get a 7600GT or for a little more a x1950 pro. atleast you can game on dx9 games with those.

Quote:
the 8600GT offers preformance on par with the 1950pro and x1900GT


what are you talking about? the 8600GT does not compete with x1950 pro (except in oblivion), the GTS comes very close, but not the GT

link: http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=8409

or http://www.firingsquad.com/hw/7871/NVIDIA_GeForce_8600_...

I totally agree.
June 19, 2007 10:56:04 PM

Okay, doing a little more research based on some of your feedback.

Seems like the 8600 has been getting some bad press. Since I don't care about DX10, I'm now looking at some nice 7xxx cards. Newegg has a BFI 7950GT on sale for $160 (after rebate). Seems like it's actually a better card than the 8600GT from what I've been reading. It's a little more expensive but I think it's a nice option.

There's also a 7900GS for $130 (after rebate) which is more in line with my original budget and not really much slower.

Also you may notice that I'm completely ignoring the ATI suggestions. That's because I've used ATI before (multiple times) and am less than impressed with their drivers and quality. I'm avoiding them for a while.

Thanks for the info, keep it coming!

SH
June 19, 2007 10:57:24 PM

When they get a 256bit card 8600 might be a good choice.
June 19, 2007 11:01:35 PM

Quote:
That's because I've used ATI before (multiple times) and am less than impressed with their drivers and quality. I'm avoiding them for a while.


Drivers and quality, ironically 2 areas where arguably the X19xx series was superior to the 79xx series...
June 19, 2007 11:06:43 PM

Fool me once, shame on you.
Fool me twice, shame on me.

Fool me a third time? I think not.

I know AMD bought ATI since I last used one so maybe things will start to improve around there. Stuff like that takes time though, so until they have proven themselves I'll be staying away from them.

BTW, I know it doesn't make a difference to most people, but ATI's "support" for linux drivers is practically non-existant. Wouldn't you love to get off the Microsoft leash eventually? I know I certainly would and step one is supporting those developers that give us the option. /rant
a b U Graphics card
June 19, 2007 11:07:38 PM

Quote:
Also you may notice that I'm completely ignoring the ATI suggestions. That's because I've used ATI before (multiple times) and am less than impressed with their drivers and quality. I'm avoiding them for a while.


LOL!

You're going to ignore the ATi card for the DX9 generation?

BTW, when you decide to upgrade be sure to base your CPU decisions based on the performance/benefits of the P4 vs Athlon XP instead of the chips you'll actually be buying. :roll:

EDIT: OH, you're the 2% of the population using LINUX for gaming. Well in that case get the GF8600GT, cause you won't be playing any stressful games until you upgrade again and Carmack brings out his next engine, so you might as well get the good looking 2D of the GF8600.

PS, Linux is for work, not for gaming, and it will remain a niche market for some time to come because it's still not compelling, even to those of us who were there in the early days all amped at the idea of a solid platform to challenge M$ that we were comfortable enough with due to our experiences with Unix / AIX. But you know what, I'm not supporting M$, but I'm also not wasting more time with Linux like I used to, and not about to wait the extra time for linux games. :|

If I wanted that kind of delay and limitations, I'd buy a MAC, like the sleek new LEDlit ones. :twisted:
June 19, 2007 11:08:31 PM

Quote:
That's because I've used ATI before (multiple times) and am less than impressed with their drivers and quality. I'm avoiding them for a while.


what sorta issues were u having?? cause i cant seem to find any so far.

plus, u can always try 3rd party drivers like the omega drivers, they work fine aswell.


however if your mind is set on nvidia than the 7900gs is a good card at that price point. (check this for the list of best vid for the money: http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/2007/06/11/the_best_gamin...)
as mentioned in there, the x1950pro is slightly stronger but also slightly costlier, so yeah your call.
June 19, 2007 11:25:39 PM

Haha, I knew that would bring out the flamers, but it's cool. You guys have your preferences and I have mine. TBH, I looked into the X1950 PRO and I've been reading some interesting stuff about stability issues possibly relating to higher PSU requirements. Since I don't plan on upgrading my nice 400W PSU anytime soon, I guess that's one more reason to stay away from the ATI.

It looks like I'll probably end up with a 7900GS. I appreciate all the input you guys have given me here. It's been very helpful, flames and all. :p 

SH
June 19, 2007 11:33:00 PM

its ok stillhart, nvidia is the better brand of cards anyway. Last winning card ATI could boast was the 9800XT, the x850XT didnt support SM3 and in todays games is worthless, well games like Unreal3 based games, and the x1950XTX is beated handily by the 7950GX2, so yea i agree ATI needs to get there stuff together, but the HD line of cards seems like the 8500PRo to me.
June 19, 2007 11:48:46 PM

Quote:
Haha, I knew that would bring out the flamers, but it's cool. You guys have your preferences and I have mine. TBH, I looked into the X1950 PRO and I've been reading some interesting stuff about stability issues possibly relating to higher PSU requirements. Since I don't plan on upgrading my nice 400W PSU anytime soon, I guess that's one more reason to stay away from the ATI.

It looks like I'll probably end up with a 7900GS. I appreciate all the input you guys have given me here. It's been very helpful, flames and all. :p 

SH


It's not about flaming - my last 3 cards were a 6800GT, a 7900GT and now an 8800GTS. My last ATI card was a 9800 Pro 128mb.

If you were just more forthcoming with precise information at the beginning, people woould be able to help you more precisely.
June 19, 2007 11:50:25 PM

Quote:
its ok stillhart, nvidia is the better brand of cards anyway. Last winning card ATI could boast was the 9800XT, the x850XT didnt support SM3 and in todays games is worthless, well games like Unreal3 based games, and the x1950XTX is beated handily by the 7950GX2, so yea i agree ATI needs to get there stuff together, but the HD line of cards seems like the 8500PRo to me.


The 7950GX2 and 1950XTX is not a like for like comparison - you're comparing a multi GPU card with a single.

If you have an agenda, just state it and justify it, or move on.
June 20, 2007 12:00:19 AM

Don't get either of the two cards. They're both (or all three...) underpowered and overpriced. The X1950Pro easily dominates this price range...
June 20, 2007 12:03:53 AM

Quote:
the 8600GT offers preformance on par with the 1950pro and x1900GT, id get that any day over an SLi 6600GT as you mentioned, and over the x19xx cards, as the 8600 supports DX10, and as shown in games making use of advanced pixel shading the 8600GT itself can pull ahead of the 1900XT, as seen in R6:V where the 8600GT is faster, and you can bet money that cry engine2 like Unreal3 engine will be shader intensive and make the 48shaders of the 1900 cry while the 64 shaders the 8600GT has, well 32x2 will run it at med to high settings in DX10 mode, dont let them fool you, the 8600GT and 8600GTS are beats in any shader intense game, its in texture intense that it fails. Also note a common trend where seeing is motion blur and such replacing AA in games as seen with the Unreal3 engine where you cant force AA to even work.


What marvelous brand of crack are you smoking? The 8600GT is nowhere close to the X1950Pro and MILES from the X1900XT. One, odd benchmark proves nothing. And I can pretty much guarantee that X1950Pro will run DX10 games faster AND prettier than the 8600GT.
June 20, 2007 12:07:43 AM

Quote:
its ok stillhart, nvidia is the better brand of cards anyway. Last winning card ATI could boast was the 9800XT, the x850XT didnt support SM3 and in todays games is worthless, well games like Unreal3 based games, and the x1950XTX is beated handily by the 7950GX2, so yea i agree ATI needs to get there stuff together, but the HD line of cards seems like the 8500PRo to me.


Uhh, no. The X850XT was the fastest card of its generation, SM3.0 support or not. The 8500GT and 8600GT are more worthless than it is in terms of performance, and there are a grand total of 2 (I think) games that require SM3.0.

The 7950GX2 was beaten more often than not by the X1950XTX. Only when you started gaming at extreme resolutions did the 7950GX2 pull forward, due to its TWO cores (as opposed to ONE) - and a price tag to match.
June 20, 2007 12:10:21 AM

Either get an X1950Pro or 7900GS off newegg for $130 ea. The x1950pro is a better card performance wise, but the 7900gs can overclock up to the level of the x1950. After overclocked they're pretty even I think.. Although the 7900gs is quieter/cooler & draws less power I believe.
June 20, 2007 12:34:44 AM

If your going to get as new card when you upgrade to vista then IMO I wouldn't get the 8600 since you cant run dx10 on XP anyways. I would go with maybe a 7900gs newegg has an EVGA for $130 after MIR.
June 20, 2007 7:14:23 AM

If DX10 or Vista don't factor, get the 7900GS.
June 20, 2007 10:13:16 AM

Quote:
I don't plan on upgrading my nice 400W PSU anytime soon, I guess that's one more reason to stay away from the ATI.


that is true, you will obviously see more complaints than praises since its the people with the problems that do the posting and not people that are happy with the purchase.

as you can see in my sig, im running the card brilliantly with just a 380 watt psu and 22amps on the +12v rail.

The main reason i stuck with ATI was cause i bought both the 7800GS and x1950 pro to check in game image quality...and boy did i notice a good difference in quality between the two cards in the fps games that i normally play (mainly ut2004, fear, bf2142). With the nvidia cards i could see lines across the floor and wall every few meters, its kinda hard to discribe. only when i switch AF on did those lines start to fade away. With the ati card (since the 9800 i had), iv never seen those lines...its just plain smooth floors and walls (less distracting for me).this is just my personal oppinion, like you said you have your choices and i have mine :) 
The 8800 cards have however sorted this out, or atleast i think they have from the pics iv seen.
June 20, 2007 1:25:25 PM

you have some strange issues with your 7800GS, maybe you should have cleaned your ATI drivers first, ever think of that, because ive stuck with nvidia since geforce 256, never touched ATI, never will, and i have never had that problem.
June 20, 2007 1:44:34 PM

Wow, so his problems with his nVidia 7800GS are ALSO ATi's fault...
June 20, 2007 1:48:22 PM

Quote:
Wow, so his problems with his nVidia 7800GS are ALSO ATi's fault...


if he didnt properly remove the ATI drivers with driver cleaner then actully yes they are, and nvidia drivers still on his comp with the ATI drivers would cause the same issues with an ATI card.
June 20, 2007 2:45:30 PM

Quote:
you have some strange issues with your 7800GS, maybe you should have cleaned your ATI drivers first, ever think of that, because ive stuck with nvidia since geforce 256, never touched ATI, never will, and i have never had that problem.


I know a lot about cleaning and optimising drivers, so thats not an issue here.

I always clean my drivers before installing, even when going from one ati driver to the next i erase everything and use drivercleaner pro in safe mode to get rid of everysingle file, so trust me, there was no problem. Iv always seen those lines on my nvidia cards from geforce 4 to the 6000 series to the 7800gs.

also this is with 3 different systems aswell, so you cant say its my system. Iv used on other pc's that belong to friends and i still see those lines. Its like AF is extremely low sort, so you can see a slightly detailed floor then all of a sudden it becomes less detailed every few meters. On the ati ones it a gradual progression towards lower detail from near to far without the obvious sudden leap.
a b U Graphics card
June 20, 2007 5:30:53 PM

Yeah there's alot of AF issues with the GF7 series (the GF8 series flipped that and now has the best AF) the texture crawl issues with the GF7, plus rougher mipmap transistions, shimmering, and LOD bias issues plagued the GF7s, which is why they redesigned the AF in the G80 (beyond what ATi/AMD was offering [which was similar to what the GF3-FX offered]). The GF8800 not only sorted out the issues but raised the bar again.

Like you said, nothing to do with drivers but with the hardware, although drivers and tweaks helped reduce the effect/issues.
June 20, 2007 5:37:58 PM

ah there are the technical terms i wanted to write but had no idea what i was talking about :lol:  :lol:  :lol: 

so yeah, thats one my main reasons for sticking with ati for now.

like i said before and as greatape mentioned, this issue is not there in the 8800's any more, so my next card could be either depending on price/performance. but if i were given a choice between the the top 7000 series card by nvidia or the top x1000 series card by ati...i would personally choose ati.

again, this is just my personal choice, im no fanboy :p 
June 20, 2007 6:49:09 PM

Quote:

Let me reiterate that I'm looking to spend not-a-lot right now so I can afford a better card when I upgrade to Vista in a few months. I am well aware that doubling my budget will yield a better card, but it's not going to happen. Besides that, the $260 card now will cost half that when I'm ready to upgrade to Vista (if not less) and the $260 at that time will run circles around the 8800 or 19xx.



If you think that the 8800GTS is going to cost less than half of what it does right now within a few months, you are going to be very, VERY disappointed..
June 20, 2007 8:11:55 PM

You are right.Saw a 7900gt on newegg was selling for 249 I believe.I think it was only 100 more when I bought it.
June 20, 2007 10:56:10 PM

8600GT is better
!