Choosing a new video card...

Right now I have a HIS 512mb 256ddr2 Radeon 1650. I bought it four months ago for $110.00. I have always been a huge supporter for ATI. Recently I have been thinking about SLI. This is because (as explained in a recent thread of mine) my fps has been crappy and games have been lagging. I am not sure if I like Catylist all to well anymore either. Can anyone tell me if my card is good?


If I upgrade I know I might need a faster processor. Right now I have a 2.6gz 5000+ AMD Dual Core. I want to upgrade to the 6000+. The card(s) I am thinking about getting is the

XFX PVT84JUDF3 GeForce 8600GT 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 SLI Supported Video Card

I am a total noob when it comes to video cards. Anyone have good nvidea card recamendations? Is it really worth upgrading? Please Help!

Also, my computer has been playing quake 4 and far cry kind of laggy. Anyone know why...
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More about choosing video card
  1. Do you have a SLI mobo? If not, considering that you'll have to get a new mobo, and 2 cards, you'd be better buying an 8800GTS 320.
    If you want a single card, I'd recommend an 7900GS/X1950PRO instead of a 8600GT. They are about the same price, but perform better.
  2. You don't need to upgrade your processor dude, I'm running a GTS-640, 2GB of RAM alongside an Athlon 4000+ single core and I can run all games to date with no slow down (80ish FPS in things like BF2142 etc.)

    Just get a better graphics card and get 2GB of RAM if you don't already

    there's 2 camps of thought at the moment;
    a) get a good DX9 card such as 7900GS/X1950PRO and wait for the next gen of DX10 cards to come out
    b) get whatever you can afford now, e.g. a GTS-640 or if you can stretch to it a GTX
  3. As vonwombat said, do you have an SLI motherboard ? If not, you will need to buy a motherboard that supports SLI. As for your current card, the Radeon X1650 PRO is just an overclocked version of the X1600XT. The Nvidia cards in the same price range perform better, such as the 7600GT.

    As for your new 8600GT card, I would not recommend it. They don't really offer great value for money. The X1950 PRO is much better. If you can extend your budget a little, then the X1950XT is also a good deal.
  4. I have only had ATI in the past myself but have started to run out of patience with them have been talking to guys on other threads and apparently the supplies of 1950s are running low,dont know if this is deliberate or a supply issue?
    As well as the SLI MOBO question do you have or intend to get Vista as you prob know you need Vista to run DX10,so that would be more expense.
    I would agree with andybird about getting a GTS.
    A 8600GT would be about the same a the card you already have performance wise.
  5. Well, the supplies of the X1950XT are certainly slowing down, but the X1950 PRO is availiable at most places.
  6. One more voice for a single 7900GS or x1950PRO; and if you only have 1GB of RAM, get another.

    If your PC has become laggy, then <insert standard suggestions about virus / malware scanning here>.

    First off do not buy a new cpu. That is a complete waste of money. The 6000x2 is the same chip as your 5000x2 with just a 400mhz higher clock speed and a bit more cache. The difference is barely noticable. If you want you can just overclock it to 3GHZ.

    I'm going to be honest with you. The reason why you are getting choppy frame rates is because your 1650 pro is crap. Whoever recommended it to you to play those games was talking rubbish. It was rubbish when it first came out and its still rubbish now. SORRY for the brutal honesty but you said you are a noob so I'm telling you in non-graphics terms.

    I'm not sure why all of a sudden you dont like ATI. Its not their fault. The card you have is barely mid range. And personally I prefer ATI drivers and CCC to Nvidias.

    Dont buy a 8600GT because in 1 month you'll be back here asking why your frame rates are crap again. Its no better than what you already have.

    What rez monitor do you have? Can you also give us your full specs including power supply and OS? And your budget?

    Without knowing everything I would say you have 3 choices. Considering the money you save on the cpu.

    Choice 1: Buy an ati x1950pro. This is good powerfull card and very good value. It wont allow maximum settings and highest resolutions but you will get good boost over your current card.

    Choice 2: Buy an 8800GTS 320mb. This is even more powerfull than the 1950 pro. At lower resolutions will allow maximum settings get good fps. This card is about 3-4 times more powerful than you current card. You will get a shock when you see your games running in the way the developers actually wanted them to be.

    Choice 3:Buy a hd2900xt 512mb. Once again more powerfull than the 8800gts. The jump isnt as large this time though. With this card you will get more of above. More details, higher rez just more of everything. Their is a drawback with this card. It has very high power consumption if your PSU cant handle it you will need to buy a new PSU which will add more cost. On the plus side this is the most futureproof of all the cards.

    If I were you I would go for choice 2. Its the best all rounder and will bring your system to life. As someone else mentioned having 2gb of ram will help. But it is not essential.

    Basically at the moment these are your only choices for an upgrade depending on your budget. Dont go with anything lower than the 1950 pro if you want to enjoy your games.
  8. The HD 2900XT is good, but really the Geforce 8800GTS offers much better value for money. So getting the 8800GTS would be the best - assuming your PSU supports it. 450 Watts is the minimum requirement for an 8800GTS.
  9. The 2900XT is only better than the 8800GTS 640 by a small margin. For low resolutions, definitely the 8800GTS 320.
  10. vonwombat said:
    The 2900XT is only better than the 8800GTS 640 by a small margin. For low resolutions, definitely the 8800GTS 320.

    Yeah. At resolutions under 1600*1200, the 8800GTS 320mb is good enough.
  11. Thanks for all of the replies. Here is my current system.

    GIGABYTE GA-M55SLI-S4 Socket AM2 NVIDIA nForce4 SLI ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail $79.99

    RAIDMAX RX-9 SE ATX-911SEB Black SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail $89.99

    HIS Hightech H165PRQ512N-R Radeon X1650PRO 512MB GDDR2 PCI Express x16 IceQ Video Card - Retail $119.99

    LOGISYS Computer PS550ABK ATX12V 550Watts Power Supply With SATA and 20/24 Pin connectors. - Retail $21.99

    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Windsor 2.6GHz Socket AM2 Processor Model ADA5000CSBOX - Retail $169.99

    WINTEC AMPX 1GB (2 x 512MB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model 3AXT6400C5-1024K - Retail $68.99

    Western Digital Caviar SE WD1600JS 160GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM $52.99

    Far Cry is running like crap...This is my main reason for upgrading. I also have been having trouble installing all of my drivers. I am not sure, but I think my cat. drivers weren't fully installed somehow. I am on a college budget too. Anyone know a better site than newegg?
    I really would like to make the switch to nVidia though. I would like the 8800gts alot! Unfortunatly I don't have 300 dollars to spare. I am going to budget my card at 150. I then might buy another later. Well see.
  12. You're skimping on the PSU, HORRIBLE mistake, the PSU is arguably the most important thing on a gaming computer (arguably because the graphics card is nearly as important), You should REALLY step down the CPU to a X2 4200+ or X2 4400+ and get instead a X1950XT 256MB, best price/perfomance ratio in the $180 range. I realize that you cannot afford a high quality PSU, but at least a decent one like this:

    FSP Group (Fortron Source) AX500-PN ATX2.2 500Watts Power Supply 110-120/ 220-240V UL, CSA, VDE, NEMKO, TUV, CE, CB, FCC -

    AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+(65W) Windsor 2.2GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 Processor - Retail

    Als o your case is a waste of money if you're on a budget:

    COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW Black Aluminum Bezel, SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

    SAPPHIRE 100186L Radeon X1950XT 256MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

    You 're allowed to skimp on the motherboard instead to make your budget fit:

    GIGABYTE GA-MA69VM-S2 Socket AM2 AMD 690V Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

    And you NEED 2GB of ram to play future games also:

    GeIL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

    The only possible upgrades I can see to this build that would be worth your money would be stretching to a 8800GTS 320MB and a slightly better PSU, otherwise this is as far as you'll get.
  13. Dude, you don't need a new processor, idk why you think you do. Save some of that money and get a much better GPU. That and you are going to budget yourself to only $150 for a GPU? Well, be prepared for crap then and don't come complaining afterwards if it doesn't perform amazingly well. As has been said, get another $30 and buy an ATI radeon x1950 XT for like $180, a much better deal all around if you can't afford the GTS. If you are really worried about gaming performance and demand good performance from your computer, you need to be willing to spend a little on a GPU.
  14. That is what I have right now and not what I am getting. This will be upgrading. Sorry for the miscommunication.
  15. I realize that, I am just saying spend more of your money on a GPU if you want better game performance. I say the x1950 XT 256mb.
  16. You need a better PSU (Most important here), another gig of ram, and the X1950XT, do not waste money on anything else.
  17. One more question. I am thinking about getting this video card.

    The cora clock is 500mhz. For this price I would think it should be higher. Some other cards cheaper have 720mhz core clock. Does the clock matter when picking a new card?
  18. It would matter if you would compare a 720Mhz 8800 with a 500 Mhz 8800. But if you compare it with a cheaper card, don't let yourself fooled by this. The 8800 if definitely better than any cheaper card you can get. Besides, you can OC you card, probably not to 720Mhz, but above 600 for sure, and on stock cooling.
  19. If you buy that card and still have any kind of problems.
    It'll be your Power Supply causing it,cant believe its any good for 21.99$
    I think you should upgrade along with the card to avoid major problems.
  20. You may need a new PSU for that card. Still, even though the clock on that card is slower than some others, it is a very good performer and far better than the faster clocked x1950 XT. It's all about the architecture. That and you can overclock the GTS very well. If you can afford it and are willing to pay for it, then I would definitely recommend it.
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