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Help with Video Card Purchase ($100-$150)

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 28, 2007 3:45:52 AM

Hi Folks,

I am trying to decide what video card to purchase. What I want to be able to do is play some of the more graphic intense games at 1280 x 1024 with the game options turned on to the max or very close to the max. I am looking for a card that is decent for the price (being between $100-150).

I've been looking at different cards on Newegg & can't figure out which one is better. I do realize that it should have GDDR3, but not sure if 8600 Gt is better then x1950 pro or 2600 xt, etc

My configuration is:

p35-DS3R
C2D E6600
2 Gig Pc6400

Thanks
October 28, 2007 4:20:10 AM

1950pro is the best for that price range, the main problem is that it doesn't support directx10, but with a 8600 gts or a 2600xt you really can't play directx10 games with good graphic options either. If you can't stand sluggish playing, go for the 1950...
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October 28, 2007 5:04:04 AM

I'll start looking at the X1950 pro's. I forgot to add that I am using XP & have no plans to goto Vista.

I should ask if the 1950pro is alot better then the 7900gs
October 28, 2007 6:23:12 AM

x1950 pro smokes the gs you can find open box versions for cheap on newegg...
October 28, 2007 10:09:25 AM

If you dont overclocking, the 7900GS is not out of the question. I should out perfrom the X1950pro when OCed. X1950pro is is a safe bet though.
October 28, 2007 11:57:53 AM

Yep get a x1950pro I have seen them on newegg for $100 open box...

Bargain
a c 140 U Graphics card
October 28, 2007 12:21:33 PM

Just make sure you have the power supply to power the new card.

-Wolf sends
October 28, 2007 2:45:28 PM

How does a 1950pro smoke a 7900gs? There's barely a 1-2% performance difference between them...Plus the 7900gs can OVERCLOCK like crazy, making it a better buy, at least in my opinion.
a b U Graphics card
October 28, 2007 3:06:50 PM

nightscope said:
How does a 1950pro smoke a 7900gs? There's barely a 1-2% performance difference between them...Plus the 7900gs can OVERCLOCK like crazy, making it a better buy, at least in my opinion.

You guys need to look at some of the newer games when pushing the GF7's. Sure the OC'ed 7900GS or 7900GT are overall very comparable to the X1950 pro, but there are signs of this changing. We saw Oblivion and NFS: Carbon greatly favoring X1900 over GF7900. And now The X1950 pro, 8600GTS and even HD2600XT are smoking the 7900GS so far in many newer games. (UT3, COD4, HL2 episode 2, TF2, I'm betting Crysis too). The X1950 pro beats the 7900GTX in the UT3 demo. Anyway, Some examples as to why I myself am leary of the GF7's in the future:


http://www.legionhardware.com/document.php?id=693&p=5

http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3128&p=4

http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/call_of_duty_4_demo...

http://www.legionhardware.com/document.php?id=691&p=3

http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3122&p=3 (7900GTX)
October 28, 2007 3:32:57 PM

There are always games that favor one video card over the other, but that's enough to rule out that both the 7900gs and the 1950pro are good buys. The 1950pro barely beats the 7900gs in most applications, and that's running at stock speed. In my opinion, the 7900gs has more capabilities of playing most games with higher performance if overclocked. That's just my 2 cents.
a b U Graphics card
October 28, 2007 3:51:15 PM

Is it a few games or a trend? You may want to rethink that if a max overclocked 7900GS offers only half the framerates of a X1950 pro in a new game you want to play. ;) 

I'm not knocking the 7900GS for most games, I bought a couple myself. But many new upcoming TWIMTBP titles, the 7900's are getting crushed, OC'ed or not. If Crysis turns out like UT3 and COD4, there will be some unhappy GF7 owners.

Bioshock, Lost Planet, COH are more examples:
http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/bioshock_mainstream...
http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/powercolor_amd_rade...
http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/powercolor_amd_rade...



October 28, 2007 4:20:25 PM

Maybe because Ati cards do better with AF/AA enabled? Look at toms charts, without AF/AA, the performance difference between these two cards is MINIMAL.
a b U Graphics card
October 28, 2007 8:53:45 PM

Most of the links I posted were without fsaa. You're right, the X1950 pro has generally done better with fsaa, but in some of these new games, even it's performance is too low to really look at with fsaa @ max detail levels.

The problem with the Tom's charts are they only show no fsaa at 1024x768, which puts us in cpu/system bound territory. Example is Dark Messiah. If we only look at the 10x7 no fsaa, basically anything above the 8600GT is cpu bound and all within 2-3 fps. http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics_2007.html?modelx... But If we look at more gpu limited settings like 12x10 4xaa, then there is a huge difference. http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics_2007.html?modelx... And even then the tops cards are cpu bound (X1950XTX obviously not the top card), so bump it up more to 19x12 4xaa, and things change up top too. http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics_2007.html?modelx...
November 8, 2007 2:20:57 AM

Wait the new 2900gt just came out theres one for 170$ on newegg Wait for some more benchy's then if its solid I would buy.
a b U Graphics card
November 8, 2007 2:34:15 AM

Check this review: http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/nvidia_geforce_8800...

The HD2900GT didn't really impress too much for the current asking price. I'm thinking it's a bad buy with the HD3850 soon to be released at a similar price. It's basically equal to the X1950 pro in this review, winning at UT3, losing at Episode 2, and being equal in the rest of the gaems.
!