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1950pro 512mb ($130) vs 7950gt ($190) vs 1950xt ($208)

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 20, 2007 8:14:55 PM

OK, so I'm getting a new video card (just want to make my PC better really) for "Hellgate London". I currently have a overclocked Geforce 6200. I want to spend about ~$150 in total for any and all upgrades.

My current system is:

AMD 64 3500+ Venice
1 GB Corsair Value-Pack AMD (512x2 in Dual Channel)
Geforce 6200 SOC (almost to 6600GT - I unlocked the other 4 pipelines)
Socket 939 MSI Neo NForce 4 Motherboard with PCI-E 16x slot
10k Raptor 75gb Western Digital HD
7.2k 200gb Seagate HD
7.2k 300gb Seagate HD
350W crap PSU (my other one died...my friend gave me his crap one for free)

I don't plan on upgrading my CPU, since I would have to buy a new AM2 Motherboard as well, so I'll looking at graphic cards and PSU combo for improvements. Which do you think is best for me (read everything below before posting opinion - take performance, warranty, memory size, heatsink, and cost into account.):

POWERCOLOR X1950PRO 512MB ($130) (Comes with Artic Heatsink)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Sapphire Radeon X1950XT 256MB ($208)
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000KQFAM2/ref=nosim/?tag=deal...

EVGA GeForce 7950 GT 256MB ($190)
http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?Product...

I know that when it comes to pure performance: 1950xt > 7950gt > 1950pro.

However, here are the issues: I care about warranty...Powercolor and eVGA have lifetime....Sapphire has 1 year. However, x1950xt is the most powerful card by a very good amount. Also, people say 512mb isn't worth it if you don't play on super high resolution (i play on 1280x1024) - but even so, for new games coming out, isn't 512mb worth it for all that texture stuff ESPECIALLY if you only have 1 GB ram? What about CPU bottleneck on the AMD 3500+? I was thinking about Geforce 8600GT but it doesn't perform so well at its price range and, I hear even though it is DX10 - its really not powerful enough to use it well. But i <3 the Geforce warranties (my x800xl died on me a while back and I bought a $20 Geforce 6200 to replace it)...compared to most ATI companies. Lastly, Hellgate London and some future games I am thinking about were made on/for Geforce graphic cards....I general, I like Geforce card/companies more, but at this price range I feel Radeon might be better, I don't know. =/

Bottomline:

- POWERCOLOR X1950PRO 512MB - weakest of the 3 cards, 512mb, lifetime warranty (rare for Radeon), amazing heatsink
- EVGA GeForce 7950 GT 256MB - middle in performance, 256mb, lifetime warranty, no special heatsink
- Sapphire Radeon X1950XT 256MB - most powerful, 256mb, 1 year warranty, no special heatsink

So, as you can see all 3 cards have pros and cons...which would you pick?

Also, I'll be needing a new PSU..here is what I have come up with - suggestions? find one you think is better for ~$50?:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I am looking for the most I can get out of all this...However, I am willing to spend some extra change if it is truly worth it for the future of my PC.

P.S: Is it just me or did the some of prices for certain graphic cards go up over the past few months?

Which would you buy, if concerned about performance, warranty, memory size, heatsink, and cost?
October 20, 2007 8:20:59 PM

FSP Group (Fortron Source) AX450-PN ATX12V 450W Power Supply 110/240V NEMKO, TUV, CSA, IEC, UL, CE - Retail

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

A good quality affordable unit with 29amps peak on the 12V rail.

Cards that are good for the money:

PNY VCG7900SXPB GeForce 7900GS 256MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 SLI Supported Video Card - Retail

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

Foxconn FV-N79SM2D2-OC GeForce 7900GS 256MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 SLI Supported Video Card - Retail

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

SAPPHIRE 100199L Radeon X1950GT 256MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

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

SAPPHIRE 100176L Radeon X1950PRO 256MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

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

Other than those it's not worth it in my eyes, when the X1950XT was at $170 there was no other choice but to admit it was the best deal though. The 7900GS is the best choice (Especially at $100 after rebate) even though it's stock performance is slightly below the Pro, because it's known to be an incredible OC'er which will make up for it.

EDIT: Along with the great deals on the 7900GS I posted above, I found yet another great deal for your CPU if you're interested, an X2 4200+ for $63 (Which sounds like a killer deal to me):

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ Manchester 2.2GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket 939 Processor - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
October 20, 2007 9:29:47 PM

Anyone have info on the 8800GT?
Related resources
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2007 10:59:11 PM

If you are willing to spend $200 for the X1950XT, you should wait a few weeks for the 8800GT and HD2950/HD38xx to be released.

If you do buy now, I would rule out the GF7950GT right away, especially at that price. In many new games the X1950 pro is smoking it and other GF7's in it's class(7900GT/GS).
UT3:
http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3128&p=4
http://www.legionhardware.com/document.php?id=693&p=5

COD4:
http://firingsquad.com/hardware/call_of_duty_4_demo_per...

The X1950XT is the clear performance winner of your three, but not all that far off in price from a 8800GTS 320MB. And the cards coming out in the next month are bound to trump the X1950XT for $200. It's Hard to recommend a X1950Xt right now (and I own one).

On the CPU side, I second the X2 4200+ as a great upgrade for you in newer games. So many new games are recommending a dual core CPU and it's a cheap upgrade. And Look at single core vs. multicore in UT3:
http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3127&p=4

An eVGA, XFX, or BFG 8800GT may be just what you want.
a b U Graphics card
October 20, 2007 11:21:14 PM

emp said:
The 7900GS is the best choice (Especially at $100 after rebate) even though it's stock performance is slightly below the Pro, because it's known to be an incredible OC'er which will make up for it.

You know, it's a good price for sure, but other cards have also been down in that price range. (X1950 pro $100-110 AR and X1900GT $90 no rebate) Also, I'm not too keen on the 7900GS right now. I have recommended them myself may times here and to friends, and have even purchased a couple myself. Their power consumption can make them a good choice, but I fear them dropping off in future games. The X1950's 3:1 architecture seems to shine in some games to where it really seperates them from the GF79's and even X1800XT's. Look at Oblivion Foliage, NFS:Carbon, and now UT3, COD4, etc. What's next on the list, Crysis? It's just in alot of new TWIMTBP games and demos even, the GF79xx's are not doing well. X1950 pro beating 7900GTX in UT3? 7900GS unplayable and half the framerates of the X1950 pro? Ouch, shouldn't be drivers it's TWIMTBP.

And Seeing how early Crysis demos were run on the X1950XTX I'd be shocked if it isn't better than a 7900GTX and a X1950 pro better than a 7900GS. COuld have been driver issues, but I lean toward performance as the reason pre-GF8800 Crysis demos were X1950 runs. Anyway, we have to wait and see, but just something to be aware of when thinking of buying the GF7's now. Personally, I'd now go 8600GTS or X1950 pro over 7900GS.
October 21, 2007 12:38:02 AM

8800GT will cost 200-250$ right? but how much better performance over 1950pro?
a b U Graphics card
October 21, 2007 1:19:46 AM

While I don't expect the 8800GT to beat the current GTS 640 like some rumors suggest, I do expect it to beat a X1950XT never mind the pro. The X1950XT hands it to the pro if you look at some of those links above. And the 8600GTS keeps up pretty well with the X1950 pro, so the 8800GT will have to be a big step up from that.

After all the hype, I'll be dissapointed in both ATI and NV if by end of November we don't see a new $179 card beating the X1950XT and a $229 card >= 8800GTS 320MB. The X1950XT has been as low as $165 for the 256MB and thew 8800GTS 320 under $250 AR, so anything less than what I said above would be lousy IMO.


October 21, 2007 10:34:18 AM

does 1950 pro & xt have same image quality?
October 23, 2007 4:56:03 AM

spotless said:
does 1950 pro & xt have same image quality?



YUP!
They both make games look very sharp and shiny.

That Powercolor(TUL) is awesome, especially for the price. $130.00
!