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Best PCI-E X16 Card for around $150

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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June 19, 2007 11:43:44 PM

What is the best card for around that money that will be great for media center pc watching movies and such on a plasma display?? I have found a few that I am going to buy but I just cant pull the trigger yet.


FYI- I like to shop NewEgg. 8)

More about : pci x16 card 150

June 19, 2007 11:45:08 PM

For media centre work only, any 8500 or 8500.
June 19, 2007 11:49:01 PM

Sorry I forgot to mention it HAD to be a Radeon. No geforce allowed =o)

What do you think about a 1950xt instead of the 8500?
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June 20, 2007 12:00:19 AM

Pointless hot loud power-consuming overkill for a media centre PC.
a b U Graphics card
June 20, 2007 12:24:14 AM

Maybe try the x16xx series. by ati.
June 20, 2007 12:35:40 AM

Quote:
Sorry I forgot to mention it HAD to be a Radeon. No geforce allowed =o)


Then wait for these. Should be out soon.
June 20, 2007 1:03:01 AM

Yes, since you for some odd reason don't want a Nvidia card :? , I would strongly recommend you wait until ATI's new midrange cards come out. I have heard good things about their power consumption and power.
June 20, 2007 11:09:27 AM

Only reason why no geforce is:

Heard that they are crap and my board has crossifre support not sli. I could still run the sli on it but it was made for crossfire.
June 20, 2007 11:09:49 AM

Quote:
Sorry I forgot to mention it HAD to be a Radeon. No geforce allowed =o)


Then wait for these. Should be out soon.



How soon will they be out?
June 20, 2007 11:14:49 AM

Quote:
Pointless hot loud power-consuming overkill for a media centre PC.



What about this? Is this going to be too loud?

SAPPHIRE 100176U Radeon X1950PRO 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Ultimate Video Card - Retail
Model #: 100176U
Item #: N82E16814102070

Power is not a issue. I have a Antec P190 case @ 1200 watts.
June 20, 2007 12:35:54 PM

Quote:
What about this? Is this going to be too loud?

SAPPHIRE 100176U Radeon X1950PRO 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16

Yes all X1950 cards are loud... except maybe for the water cooled one

Quote:
How soon will they be out?

July I think...

but seriously the reason you gave not having a Nvidia card is pretty bad. You stated that you want mediacenter functionalaty and one 8500 handles that just fine. All the stuff you've read it being bad is gaming. But since you only want mediacenter functionalaty that card is enough for your needs. You won't ever need to X-fire or SLi cards if you don't want to play games.
June 20, 2007 1:09:00 PM

Quote:

but seriously the reason you gave not having a Nvidia card is pretty bad. You stated that you want mediacenter functionalaty and one 8500 handles that just fine. All the stuff you've read it being bad is gaming. But since you only want mediacenter functionalaty that card is enough for your needs. You won't ever need to X-fire or SLi cards if you don't want to play games.


You beat me to it, I thought exactly the same thing. There's no need to consider crossfire or SLI if you will only use this machine for media center.

What's especially attractive about the 8500/8600 cards is there are fanless solutions out there. For an HTPC, quiet is ideal.

-TyShoe
June 20, 2007 1:12:10 PM

Wouldn't X-fire or SLI get me a better picture though???


The board I have is a Asus P5K3 Deluxe. It says this on the overview of the board.

ATI CrossFire Technology
ATI´s CrossFire boosts image quality along with rendering speed, eliminating the need to scale down screen resolutions to get the high image quality you want. CrossFire ignites with the higher antialiasing, anisotropic filtering, shading, and texture settings you desire. Adjust your display configurations, experiment with your advanced 3D settings, and check the effect with a real-time 3D-rendered preview within ATI´s Catalyst™ Control Center to rule your CrossFire system.


Now does that mean it is better to use a X-Fire card or does it matter??

Sorry but I have no clue when it comes to video cards because i do not use my PC for gaming.
June 20, 2007 1:15:56 PM

An additional card will not improve your image quality at all, it will just allow faster rendering. Only necessary if you are playing 3D games, or maybe if you are running media center on a 2560x1600 resolution monitor.

Quote:

ATI CrossFire Technology
ATI´s CrossFire boosts image quality along with rendering speed, eliminating the need to scale down screen resolutions to get the high image quality you want. CrossFire ignites with the higher antialiasing, anisotropic filtering, shading, and texture settings you desire. Adjust your display configurations, experiment with your advanced 3D settings, and check the effect with a real-time 3D-rendered preview within ATI´s Catalyst™ Control Center to rule your CrossFire system.


The image quality improvement they are talking about here is actually a result of the increased rendering performance, because you can then crank up the AA/AF IN GAMES.

Besides that, adding a second card with a fan spinning will introduce more noise, and higher power requirements.

-TyShoe
June 20, 2007 1:18:26 PM

Ok so what would be the best brand or actual card to get?
June 20, 2007 1:24:02 PM

If you want a card today I say passive cooled gf8500.
If you want a better deal for Mediacenter you can wait a couple of weeks and get the HD2400 that can give audio and picture on the same HDMI cable.
June 20, 2007 1:26:36 PM

Quote:
Sorry I forgot to mention it HAD to be a Radeon. No geforce allowed =o)

What do you think about a 1950xt instead of the 8500?


well you just shot that in the foot, but your choice, even if its a stupid one, but not all you ati nut jobs can be helped i suppose
June 20, 2007 1:26:49 PM

NO, Xfire and SLI will not give you a better picture... unless you have something like a 7000000x5000000 pixel display. (You see where I'm going) The 8500 series are great for home theater usage. Don't bother with the older Radeon cards. You should either buy and 8500 or wait until ATI's lower end HD2x00 cards come out.
June 20, 2007 1:56:19 PM

Quote:
If you don't need HDMI, this card looks nice...

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

Passively cooled (quiet), HDCP, and under $100.

-TyShoe





I would prefer the HDMI since I am now using a DVI to HDMI adapter.

Is there a card that has that that is good? Agian a brand of a l;ink would be great like the last one. :) 


Thanks for the help guys
June 20, 2007 2:04:05 PM

Also is there a HDMI card that supports the SLI and Direct X10???
June 20, 2007 2:14:37 PM

As stated earlier, you will probably want to wait for this card...

http://ati.amd.com/products/radeonhd2600/index.html

Currently, there are no other cards that combine HDMI / HDCP / and DX10.

In fact, the currently available cards that have HDMI and HDCP leave much to be desired. I wouldn't recommend any of the ones available at newegg.

-TyShoe
a c 143 U Graphics card
June 20, 2007 2:55:54 PM

Quote:
Only reason why no geforce is:

Heard that they are crap and my board has crossifre support not sli. I could still run the sli on it but it was made for crossfire.


Watching movies on an X1900XT Crossfire setup... Wow. It would be what, 287 times faster than my trusty GeForce MX 4000 which costs $30 and also plays movies all right. Man, that's overkill...

Oh, and nVidia GeForce cards are not crap, at least not the recent ones. The best card ever is nVidia's 8800 GTX. OK, that's irrelevant here, you totally don't need that one. Get the 8500, or maybe the 8600.
June 20, 2007 3:03:42 PM

Quote:

Yes all X1950 cards are loud... except maybe for the water cooled one



The X1950 Pro uses less power than the other X1950s and that Sapphire has a Zalman fan that doesn't make a lot of noise.

That being said, for a HTPC I'd look for passive cooling if the case is good.
June 20, 2007 3:11:38 PM

To echo what others are saying ... don't even consider SLI or Crossfire for a HTPC unless you also want to use it for gaming AND don't care about fan noise while watching TV/movies.
June 20, 2007 4:21:52 PM

Quote:
Wouldn't X-fire or SLI get me a better picture though???


Dee dee DEEEEE!
June 20, 2007 4:27:47 PM

Quote:
Wouldn't X-fire or SLI get me a better picture though???


Dee dee DEEEEE!

What is Dee dee DEEEE?

As I stated before I dont know ANYTHING about graphics cards. I deal with network stuff not hardware stuff.
June 20, 2007 4:28:38 PM

[/quote]

The X1950 Pro uses less power than the other X1950s and that Sapphire has a Zalman fan that doesn't make a lot of noise.

That being said, for a HTPC I'd look for passive cooling if the case is good.[/quote]


The case is a Antec P190
June 20, 2007 4:31:00 PM

Quote:
As stated earlier, you will probably want to wait for this card...

http://ati.amd.com/products/radeonhd2600/index.html

Currently, there are no other cards that combine HDMI / HDCP / and DX10.

In fact, the currently available cards that have HDMI and HDCP leave much to be desired. I wouldn't recommend any of the ones available at newegg.

-TyShoe



Ok sounds good. I will eiter go with the 8500 with the DX10 support or wait for the 2600.
June 20, 2007 4:31:49 PM

Quote:
Only reason why no geforce is:

Heard that they are crap and my board has crossifre support not sli. I could still run the sli on it but it was made for crossfire.


Watching movies on an X1900XT Crossfire setup... Wow. It would be what, 287 times faster than my trusty GeForce MX 4000 which costs $30 and also plays movies all right. Man, that's overkill...

Oh, and nVidia GeForce cards are not crap, at least not the recent ones. The best card ever is nVidia's 8800 GTX. OK, that's irrelevant here, you totally don't need that one. Get the 8500, or maybe the 8600.


So pretty much I am wasting the money if I spend more then the say 50 bucks for a regular card?
June 20, 2007 4:36:36 PM

Quote:

So pretty much I am wasting the money if I spend more then the say 50 bucks for a regular card?


Not necessarily. You still want to future-proof yourself somewhat. As you stated, you would like to get a card with HDMI. And if you plan on doing Blu-ray or HD-DVD in the future, you're going to want the card to be HDCP compliant. For those two features, you will be spending more than $50.

-TyShoe
June 20, 2007 5:24:02 PM

probably should wait for ati/amd to release the hd 2400/2600 cards as they will supports hdmi as well as full hardware decode acceleration. it will be well worth it for a build like this.
June 20, 2007 5:32:47 PM

Quote:

So pretty much I am wasting the money if I spend more then the say 50 bucks for a regular card?


Not necessarily. You still want to future-proof yourself somewhat. As you stated, you would like to get a card with HDMI. And if you plan on doing Blu-ray or HD-DVD in the future, you're going to want the card to be HDCP compliant. For those two features, you will be spending more than $50.

-TyShoe


Yes I will be adding the Blu-Ray and I already have a XBox 360 HD-DVD player that can hook up through USB. So the best option will be what the response after yours and what you have already stated then?: The new ATI 2600's? Do you know what the price of those will be seeing how I want to stay around the 150 mark?
June 20, 2007 5:35:10 PM

the 2600 would probably initially be around 175 but will drop down as volume increases in the channel to be competitive with the 8600gt. the 2400 should be no more than 125 initially and hover around 100 dollars as volume increases.
June 20, 2007 6:58:31 PM

Sounds good to me.

So is the 8600gt and the 2600hd the same card pretty much or is one better then the other?
June 20, 2007 9:42:42 PM

Quote:
Sounds good to me.

So is the 8600gt and the 2600hd the same card pretty much or is one better then the other?


We don't know because it hasn't been released yet, but we do know that the 8600 GT is good for your purposes. Here's a link to various fanless 8500/8600 series cards.
June 21, 2007 1:44:34 AM

He did mention he would like a card with HDMI out. Although many of those fanless 8 series cards look nice, exactly -0- of them offer HDMI...

-TyShoe
a b U Graphics card
June 21, 2007 2:17:31 AM

Fudzilla says the HD2600XT will have a $150 or less price tag;

http://www.fudzilla.com/index.php?option=com_content&ta...

even in Euroland;

http://www.fudzilla.com/index.php?option=com_content&ta...

As for performance we won't know until it launches.

IMO expect it to be either just below or just above the GF8600GTS, which direction we just don't know yet. However it should be perfect for your non-gaming needs, and like the GF8600 it should be a lack-luster gamer making you wish they put UVD on the X1950Pro or GF7900GS. :x
June 21, 2007 2:22:01 AM

I hate to say this with all my body but if you don't want Nvidia for a media theatre PC then wait for the AMD 2400 series for lowest price, power usage/consumption, and UVD capabilites
a b U Graphics card
June 21, 2007 2:27:35 AM

Quote:

Currently, there are no other cards that combine HDMI / HDCP / and DX10.


Well there is one that does straight out of the box, but it's not in his price range (the HD2900) and of course he could add the DVI to HDMI adapters on to the GF8 series but it wouldn't carry the audio.
June 21, 2007 12:41:17 PM

All the HD 2900s that I've seen just have a DVI to HDMI adapter. How does the HDMI get the audio? Do you feed it from your sound card into the video card using the VIVO dongle?

The geforce 7 cards I was looking at come with an S/PDIF cable, but I didn't see one in the pictures for the HD2900XT at newegg.

-TyShoe
June 21, 2007 12:53:15 PM

Ya I was looking at those 2900's but sheesh 450 for a card??? That is nuts for just video EVEN IF IT IS GAMING lol.



As far as not using a Geforce card. I didn't say I wouldn't I just thought that my board would work better with the X-fire instead of SLI because it has that feature listed. I did here a-lot of negative stuff from people about it too from these forums so I was thinking ATI would be the best bet for me.
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