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Geforce 6800GT upgrade to Radeon X1950XT (agp bus)

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June 21, 2007 1:25:18 PM

Heya

figured i'd consult the experts ! right now im thinking of doing this upgrade as an interim measure while i save up the cash for a completely new system (which will obviously be a pcix graphics card). Assuming my psu is up to it, how much of a performance gain am i likely to get ? ive tried to find direct comparison benchmarks but no managed to. My current system is a P4-3.2 with 2GB RAM.

cheers for any advice :) 
June 21, 2007 1:47:04 PM

I read a review a couple of weeks ago on the 8600GT when I was looking at buying a X1950 Pro. The NVidia card could only beat the Pro if overclocked, so it would be safe to assume that a X1950XT would cream it.

Stick with what you've got for now is my advice, especially after reading the review of DX10 games on TH. There's no great difference in graphics quality between DX9 and DX10 cards, at least at the moment. That may well change towards the end of the year though.
June 21, 2007 1:52:14 PM

he said 6800GT not 8600GT

you'll notice a fair increase

you can try this little link to compare them: http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/graphics/charts.html?mode...

in games like BF2142 and oblivion at high res and max quality you'll notice around a 300% increase in performance. However, this is keeping in mind that the cpu will also play a factor in the overall performance increase.

but either way compared with a 6800GT the x1950XT is killer.
Related resources
June 21, 2007 1:52:38 PM

Hiya

thanks for the quick reply. however its a 6800gt i have rather than an 8600gt :)  ( so i am well behind the times in terms of graphics even if it does chug along reasonably). Sure towards the end of the year i'll be looking at the full replacement pc option but for now.... :) 

Ahh i made this post before i saw your Blade. thanks for the link (altho do they not relate to pci-x card ?) if the link you made is agp, then i think i'm sold on the idea :lol: 
June 21, 2007 1:53:13 PM

read my reply above urs :p 
June 21, 2007 1:55:08 PM

Oh b*gger, sorry, should've read the post correctly eh?

I'm well happy with my X1950 Pro, can play BF2 at 1280x1024 all maxed out and framerate of 60-70, which is fine. The XT is more powerful, so (as I said) go for it.
June 21, 2007 1:58:09 PM

hehe no worries :)  anyway thank you both. now to go check my PSU is up to it. All i can remember is it was a Tagan, around 80 quid when i bought it and had pci-x power connectors on it.

thanks again 8)
a c 130 U Graphics card
June 21, 2007 1:59:20 PM

Oh its worth it no doubt!
Just check blades link the diff is awsome but like you said make sure your psu is up to it. :p 

Mactronix
June 21, 2007 2:02:16 PM

I believe that the recommended minimum PSU for the Pro is 450W, but I like a bit of headroom so went for a 600W. The XT draws a bit more power though. I reckon you'd be OK with 500W+
June 21, 2007 2:19:10 PM

I figured sod it & just bought one. If my PSU isnt up to the task, i'll just grab a new one of those. At least that will be transferrable to my new system later on.

Thanks once again chaps and roll on saturday :lol: 
June 21, 2007 3:30:10 PM

The X1950XT is a WHOLE lot faster.
Sorry to say I think the P4 will be the bottleneck.

I think such a system will run Oblivion and lesser games (FEAR, HL2, Medevil2, maybe Ghost Recon, etc) well.
I see the CPU being a problem for greater games, like Crysis and other DX10 games. (even Crysis in DX9/WinXP). I saw some demo benchmarks on Crysis, all the PCs where high-end.

IF you decide on the X1950XT, let it be the LAST upgrade for that PC.
I will personally rather save the cash and try to get new everything that will have a much longer life.
The nV 7800GS was the last AGP card I got.
June 21, 2007 4:37:05 PM

It will definitely bottleneck. Where are you buying it from? If you can find an X1950Pro for cheaper, I'd go with that. It'd save you money and you'd get the same performance on your P4 system as you would with the XT, because of the bottleneck.
June 21, 2007 4:37:13 PM

It'll make a night and day difference, even with your 3.2GHz Pentium 4. :) 
June 21, 2007 6:05:45 PM

Quote:
The X1950XT is a WHOLE lot faster.
Sorry to say I think the P4 will be the bottleneck.


Are you referring to the PCI-E X1950XT or AGP part as being a whole lot faster? Because the Gecube X1950XT AGP which is the only AGP XT, it's not a whole lot faster than the Pro. It's specs are only 1400 Mhz. on the memory, not 1800 Mhz as most of the PCI-E cards are. Overclocking will also be limited because Gecube decided to use a really great Peltier Cooler (TEC) on the card, but in doing so they didn't leave enough room for ramsinks/heatsinks on the VRAM, they're bare.

As Gary_Busey suggested I'd go with the Sapphire X1950 Pro or GT if you want to save some more money. It's only $146.99 at NewEgg right now and you'll probabaly be able to overclock the card to Pro speeds.
June 22, 2007 9:28:31 AM

I appreciate all the comments. Yeah the system is relatively old but for now, im not playing any seriously modern games. Mainly i play WoW which does struggle a bit in certain heavy graphics places (mebbe cos i like playing in high res with all the trimmings :lol:  ) but yes it will be my last upgrade for this system. I forsee a nice xmas pressie this year :D 

Oh checked my PSU last nite, its a Tagan 480W. I'm guessing there is no software i can run that checks the draw on it so looks like i will have to get a new one.
June 22, 2007 10:56:42 AM

480W tagan is fine!!!!!

i use a 380W tagan for my system (look at my sig...thing) :p 
June 22, 2007 11:02:04 AM

Quote:
I appreciate all the comments. Yeah the system is relatively old but for now, im not playing any seriously modern games. Mainly i play WoW which does struggle a bit in certain heavy graphics places (mebbe cos i like playing in high res with all the trimmings :lol:  ) but yes it will be my last upgrade for this system. I forsee a nice xmas pressie this year :D 

Oh checked my PSU last nite, its a Tagan 480W. I'm guessing there is no software i can run that checks the draw on it so looks like i will have to get a new one.


If this is your PSU - see link below, I don't think you'll be needing a new PSU. It is likely to be fine with the X1950 Pro / GT or 7950GT. It's also gotten some very good reviews and your +12v rail is 28a.

http://www.bytesizedreviews.com/index.php?rev_id=210&pa...
June 22, 2007 11:34:48 AM

Yep that looks like the bunny. I'll double check the model tonite but i'm reasonably sure. thanks for the post. i was kinda hoping not to have to splash out again ;) 
June 22, 2007 1:02:53 PM

Quote:
Yep that looks like the bunny. I'll double check the model tonite but i'm reasonably sure. thanks for the post. i was kinda hoping not to have to splash out again ;) 


You were also looking for a benches. Take a look at this Firing Squad Review of the Powercolor X1950 Pro, most Pro's will display similar benches. They compare the Pro to a 6800 Ultra in this review which is of course better thanthe GT, but it should give you an approximate idea of how your card would fare against it ......

http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/powercolor_radeon_x...
June 22, 2007 1:43:55 PM

I think the most appropriate word that springs to mind is "LOL" !!! cant wait for it to turn up tomorrow then.

Thanks so much to everyone who posted here. You guys are the best and it awesome to know there are such helpful people out there. I now await my new card with much confidence and grin-factor expectations :D 
June 22, 2007 3:05:36 PM

lets hope everything works without a hitch :p 

but crap happens, so if you have trouble with it, just buzz and we will try to sort it out :lol: 
June 22, 2007 7:56:48 PM

Quote:
I think the most appropriate word that springs to mind is "LOL" !!! cant wait for it to turn up tomorrow then.

Thanks so much to everyone who posted here. You guys are the best and it awesome to know there are such helpful people out there. I now await my new card with much confidence and grin-factor expectations :D 


Your welcome and I would like to thank everyone here as well. On most forums, these kinds of threads where someone innocently asks "what kind of AGP card should I get" quite often turn into a blood-bath for some reason. Nice to have just a "discussion" on the subject for a change.

And as blade85 said, send up a smoke signal if you have problems with the new card. Good luck.
June 23, 2007 5:24:46 AM

Quote:
The X1950XT is a WHOLE lot faster.
Sorry to say I think the P4 will be the bottleneck.


Are you referring to the PCI-E X1950XT or AGP part as being a whole lot faster? Because the Gecube X1950XT AGP which is the only AGP XT, it's not a whole lot faster than the Pro. It's specs are only 1400 Mhz. on the memory, not 1800 Mhz as most of the PCI-E cards are. Overclocking will also be limited because Gecube decided to use a really great Peltier Cooler (TEC) on the card, but in doing so they didn't leave enough room for ramsinks/heatsinks on the VRAM, they're bare.

As Gary_Busey suggested I'd go with the Sapphire X1950 Pro or GT if you want to save some more money. It's only $146.99 at NewEgg right now and you'll probabaly be able to overclock the card to Pro speeds.
Anything faster than the X1950 Pro is a lot faster than the 6800GT. My point before was the CPU becomes the bottleneck when trying to stuff a modern high-end card in a socket 478 motherboard.

I had the same questions a few months ago. So, I am interested to hear how the x1950XTI really works in AGP. I had a 7800GS in my old PC, so I have SOME idea of how a good video card works with a P4.
June 23, 2007 11:31:36 AM

Quote:

I had the same questions a few months ago. So, I am interested to hear how the x1950XTI really works in AGP. I had a 7800GS in my old PC, so I have SOME idea of how a good video card works with a P4.


Sorry, thought you were comparing the XT to the Pro.

As far as the Gecube X1950XT AGP goes, I owned the card for 3 months and then sold it on EBay for a number of reasons including all the posts I had been seeing regarding the TEC and overheating issues. At the time I was a little gun-shy from a recent experience I had just gone through RMA'ing two different HIS X1950 Pro ICEQ3 Turbo (V1) cards for having bad cores and or overheating issues and I didn't need to deal with that again.

Side note: since then HIS has created a new (V2) version 2 of the ICEQ3 X1950 Pro card which fixed the previous X1950 Pro cards issues by lowering the core clocks and changing the GDD3 to faster chips.

Regarding the performance gain between the Gecube and Pro, it's a small one. So I got rid of the card and picked up the 7950GT which consumes much less power and only takes up one slot. Anyway, the Gecube X1950XT is certainly the fastest AGP card, but on my rig it only beat the Pro by a slim margin. The overclocked Gecube X1950XT only bested an overclocked Sapphire X1950 Pro 512MB card (had this card for 2 months as well) by 500 points in 3DMark05 and by less in 3DMark06. I don't have a P4, but in my case the performance difference was minimal between the two cards and as I said in the previous post this is likely do to the Gecubes lower than normal memory clocks. One last thing about the Gecube, it also uses 3 slots and the addendum with the manual says a 550w PSU is recommended and it also requires 3 Molex Connections or 1 Molex Connection & 1 PCI-E Connection.

Sounds like I don't like the Gecube, but I will say this. Mine was working perfectly for 3 months and it benched faster than any other card that I have owned over the past year which include ......

Visiontek X1950 Pro 256MB AGP
Sapphire X1950 Pro 512MB AGP
HIS ICEQ3 Turbo X1950 Pro 512MB AGP
Gainward Bliss 7800 GS+ - Goes Like Hell Edition 512MB
XFX 7950 GT 512MB AGP

Yeah, I know I'm nuts. But believe it or not didn't lose much money with all the card swapping, maybe $50 at the most. I either returned the card or sold it on EBay.
June 23, 2007 5:44:43 PM

Yes i am glad it didn't turn into a bloodbath. :lol: 

Enewmen - Well i'm afraid your thoughts may turn out to be correct. I have noticed very little difference in WoW aside from the fact that i can run higher AA with no slowdown but to be honest, the FPS seems exactly the same which is kinda disappointing. I havent tried anything else yet but it may well be that the CPU is the issue :( 

Honestjohn - Yes it is a damn sight hotter in my case now in fact that is probably the most noticable difference between the cards sadly. More heat but not more speed.

I'm now wondering if i should just get a new board that takes a Core2 duo but has an agp and pci-x slot. I assume such a thing exists ?

Ahh well, i guess you live & learn.
June 23, 2007 6:50:11 PM

Quote:
Yes i am glad it didn't turn into a bloodbath. :lol: 

Enewmen - Well i'm afraid your thoughts may turn out to be correct. I have noticed very little difference in WoW aside from the fact that i can run higher AA with no slowdown but to be honest, the FPS seems exactly the same which is kinda disappointing. I havent tried anything else yet but it may well be that the CPU is the issue :( 

Honestjohn - Yes it is a damn sight hotter in my case now in fact that is probably the most noticable difference between the cards sadly. More heat but not more speed.

I'm now wondering if i should just get a new board that takes a Core2 duo but has an agp and pci-x slot. I assume such a thing exists ?

Ahh well, i guess you live & learn.


Sorry to hear you didn't see more of an improvement, which card did you end up with exactly?
June 23, 2007 7:08:23 PM

I got the Gecube X1950XTX. I have to admit i'm quite surprised to see pretty much "no" difference at all. Almost as if it is stuck running slow (tho the heat suggests otherwise :lol:  ).

Anyway ive found an ASRock board that supports both agp & pci-x so i think i'll get a new mobo & a core2duo.

If that fails, there is always a gun :D 
June 23, 2007 11:44:39 PM

Quote:
I got the Gecube X1950XTX. I have to admit i'm quite surprised to see pretty much "no" difference at all. Almost as if it is stuck running slow (tho the heat suggests otherwise :lol:  ).

Anyway ive found an ASRock board that supports both agp & pci-x so i think i'll get a new mobo & a core2duo.

If that fails, there is always a gun :D 


Hey Smile, you probably are being bottlenecked, but something else to consider. I have seen more than a post ot two of people getting lousy performance because their power supply isn't up to powering the card. Random reboots and lock-ups aren't always the case. It's likely your bottlenecked, but I just thought I'd mention it. Also, how are you powering the card? Using 3 Molex connections or 1 Molex & 1 PCI-E??
June 23, 2007 11:50:57 PM

Quote:
I got the Gecube X1950XTX. I have to admit i'm quite surprised to see pretty much "no" difference at all. Almost as if it is stuck running slow (tho the heat suggests otherwise :lol:  ).

Anyway ive found an ASRock board that supports both agp & pci-x so i think i'll get a new mobo & a core2duo.

If that fails, there is always a gun :D 


Hey Smile, you probably are being bottlenecked, but something else to consider. I have seen more than a post ot two of people getting lousy performance because their power supply isn't up to powering the card. Random reboots and lock-ups aren't always the case. It's likely your bottlenecked, but I just thought I'd mention it. Also, how are you powering the card? Using 3 Molex connections or 1 Molex & 1 PCI-E??

im pretty sure his power supply is more than enough.

doesnt WOW have an FPS cap any way??? like some games have a cap of 30 fp while others have it at 80...etc. so you cant go over those frame rates no matter what (unless you change certain ini files off course)
June 24, 2007 1:23:53 AM

Quote:
I got the Gecube X1950XTX. I have to admit i'm quite surprised to see pretty much "no" difference at all. Almost as if it is stuck running slow (tho the heat suggests otherwise :lol:  ).

Anyway ive found an ASRock board that supports both agp & pci-x so i think i'll get a new mobo & a core2duo.

If that fails, there is always a gun :D 


Hey Smile, you probably are being bottlenecked, but something else to consider. I have seen more than a post ot two of people getting lousy performance because their power supply isn't up to powering the card. Random reboots and lock-ups aren't always the case. It's likely your bottlenecked, but I just thought I'd mention it. Also, how are you powering the card? Using 3 Molex connections or 1 Molex & 1 PCI-E??

im pretty sure his power supply is more than enough.

doesnt WOW have an FPS cap any way??? like some games have a cap of 30 fp while others have it at 80...etc. so you cant go over those frame rates no matter what (unless you change certain ini files off course)

I mentioned that because the manual's addendum recommends a 550w PSU. You need to power the XT plus the Peltier Cooler, hence 3 molex connections. I also asked how he was hooked up because quite a few people, including myself, didn't read the manual before installing the card and didn't see the hidden molex stuck between the PCB and the TEC Cooler.
June 24, 2007 8:49:45 AM

Howdy

Well it's hooked up to the 1 molex and 1 pci-e (yeah i spotted the one hidden between the board & cooler :D  )
WoW as far as i know isnt fps limited. I have seen 80 fps in some areas whereas the areas where it chuggs drop as low as 15-20 with the usual occasional stutter when you spin the camera.

But thanks to your comments, i got to thinking and at the end of the day i have a 3-4 year old system effectively trying to support a pretty recent card so it kinda makes sense about the bottleneck. To that end i ordered myself a new board and a C2D-E6600 (2.4Ghz). I'm also getting a new sata drive as mine are getting a bit old. I figure i'll upgrade the RAM to DDR2 next month :D 

So the "upgrade" has cost me around £450 (not inc the RAM yet) but all in all, its a hell of an upgrade for the money and it has been a while since i had one :) 
June 24, 2007 11:25:42 AM

Quote:
Howdy

Well it's hooked up to the 1 molex and 1 pci-e (yeah i spotted the one hidden between the board & cooler :D  )
WoW as far as i know isnt fps limited. I have seen 80 fps in some areas whereas the areas where it chuggs drop as low as 15-20 with the usual occasional stutter when you spin the camera.

But thanks to your comments, i got to thinking and at the end of the day i have a 3-4 year old system effectively trying to support a pretty recent card so it kinda makes sense about the bottleneck. To that end i ordered myself a new board and a C2D-E6600 (2.4Ghz). I'm also getting a new sata drive as mine are getting a bit old. I figure i'll upgrade the RAM to DDR2 next month :D 

So the "upgrade" has cost me around £450 (not inc the RAM yet) but all in all, its a hell of an upgrade for the money and it has been a while since i had one :) 


Hey Smile. Nice upgrade, I'm jealous, someday when I find the time I may join you. Back to the Gecube for a second though, have you overclocked the card at all? As I mentioned previously, the memory is set for a default of only 1400 Mhz effective. I would bump it up to 1600 Mhz. effective and the core to 675 Mhz which is the Gecube recomended overclock. The core is set at 648 Mhz. as default. I promise I'll leave you alone after one more question. :)  What are your idle and load temps?
June 24, 2007 2:13:11 PM

did you get the asrock board??

check my setup in my sig. It will be pretty darn similar to that.

Oh and when i went from my old p4 2.5ghz to this set up, buy just changing my mobo and cpu....the difference in performance was just worth crying (in a happy way) about :lol:  :lol: 
June 24, 2007 3:28:02 PM

Honestjohn - Questions are really not a problem after all the help everyone has given me here. No i havent clocked it up at all yet and to be honest probably wont right now since the system is running a lot hotter already. I'll prob look into better fans at some point (the case has about 8 in total anyway). As for temps, well hows it best to check. Certainly my system/cpu temp has gone up (altho it does sit above the card effectively so i guess it would).

Blade - Yeah im expecting big things really :)  the board etc arrives tuesday and not only will the system itself be a lot faster, it'll be a fresh install of XP (its been a LONG time since i bothered reinstalling everything) so yeah i expect some tears of happiness when its all up & running :D 
June 24, 2007 5:20:00 PM

Quote:
Honestjohn - Questions are really not a problem after all the help everyone has given me here. No i havent clocked it up at all yet and to be honest probably wont right now since the system is running a lot hotter already. I'll prob look into better fans at some point (the case has about 8 in total anyway). As for temps, well hows it best to check. Certainly my system/cpu temp has gone up (altho it does sit above the card effectively so i guess it would).


There have been many issues reported with the XT as far overheating goes due to poor contact between the GPU and the TEC. I would make sure your card is really OK by checking the idle and load temps in Catlayst Control Center, there is a temperature guage in there. My idles temps varied from 43-46c and load I was at around 69-72c. You may also want to load ATI Tray Tool rather than the CCC. It has a temp monitor for the card that sits in the system tray and also one of the best 3D Stress tests around to test the card for artifacts and general operating. See this link for navigating around the CCC....

http://www.tweakguides.com/ATICAT_7.html

Regarding your upgrade, just took a quick look at NewEgg pricing and that C2D and Asrock board come to under $300 US. It's mighty tempting. If I wasn't about to be bewteen jobs real soon, I probably go for it. I didn't realize I could re-use ALL of my components in that board including my DDR PC3200.
June 25, 2007 1:05:00 AM

Blade85/Smilemon, going to go off topic here for a minute. Regarding the Asrock 4CoreDual. I was doing a little digging because I've been contempalting doing this and I see this board is only usig PCI-E x4 and not x16. Does this effect the graphics card performance much?
June 25, 2007 8:32:08 AM

Not sure about the pci-x slot. Still the mobo is only about £35 so i dont mind replacing it much further down the road :) 
June 25, 2007 12:51:37 PM

well yes... :lol: 

4X pci-e is like 8X AGP. now while upto the x1950XT would be fine in 8X AGP, the newer 8800 cards and the HD2900 cards require that little bit more.

im sure there was a review here on toms about pci-e bandwith.

when i find it, i'll post it.

only reason i got it was cause i didnt want to replace my 2 gigs of DDR memory or my agp card. plus its so damn cheap... :lol: 


edit: today is your lucky day....i found it :p 

http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/2007/03/27/pci_express_sc...
June 25, 2007 4:32:17 PM

Quote:
well yes... :lol: 

4X pci-e is like 8X AGP. now while upto the x1950XT would be fine in 8X AGP, the newer 8800 cards and the HD2900 cards require that little bit more.

im sure there was a review here on toms about pci-e bandwith.

when i find it, i'll post it.

only reason i got it was cause i didnt want to replace my 2 gigs of DDR memory or my agp card. plus its so damn cheap... :lol: 

edit: today is your lucky day....i found it :p 

http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/2007/03/27/pci_express_sc...


Thanks for the link Blade and a current article no less. Very interesting article, most benches show the performance hit as minimal for using PCI-E x4, but that Call of Duty 2 Bench, damn that was a horrible performance hit on that one. Almost scares me away from the idea. Now I'm wondering if the performance trade-off is woth the upgrade path. I'll likely wait until I can afford a whole new rig whc should be around 2014. :) 
June 25, 2007 10:16:22 PM

lol 2014...have fun

its a cheap board that works fine. I just thought that id get it, use it for all its worth... if it lags me down too much then i'll just change the board along with the memory (these are going quite cheap now aswell)
June 26, 2007 10:12:24 AM

My plan exactly. Well its all just arrived and i'm quite scared. not socketed one of these cpu's before and its always a scary moment :D  also the booklet keeps going on about a system temp of <40degrees is necessary. how the hell will i get that when its sat above the x1950xt :lol: 
June 26, 2007 2:00:00 PM

Update : Well the system is together, now i really want to go home and see if its made any difference !! :D 
June 26, 2007 4:08:39 PM

lol

best of luck :p 
June 27, 2007 1:12:08 AM

Quote:
Update : Well the system is together, now i really want to go home and see if its made any difference !! :D 


So how are we doing? Did you use the same power supply with the new motherboard?
June 27, 2007 8:32:35 AM

Yeah used the same power supply. Now running WoW in 1600x1200x4AA with all the options turned up. It is very smooth altho there are a few stutters which no doubt will be resolved when i put the DDR2 RAM in today :D 
June 27, 2007 9:04:16 AM

Go for it my friend.The jump from a 6800gt to a 1950xt is astronomical at least.You'll be very pleased with its over all performance,and it should give you lots of playing room till you're ready to buld a completely new system.(one based on PCI-E instead of AGP.Goodluck.

Dahak

AMD X2 5600+ @ 2.8ghz(stock)
M2N32-SLI DELUXE MB
2 GIGS DDR2 800 RAM
THERMALTAKE 850WATT PSU
7950GT KO(WAITING FOR MY OTHER TO COME BACK FROM RMA)
ACER 22IN. LCD
SMILIDON RAIDMAX GAMING CASE
80GIG/250gig SATA2 HD's
XP MCE
June 27, 2007 12:32:49 PM

hehe :lol: 

have fun :wink:
!