Can't decide...2600XT GDDR3, 2600XT GDDR4, or 2900GT

I wish THG would stay more up to date (especially with their charts) with graphics cards. Anyway, I'm trying to decide which card to get and price is a fairly important factor. I've gathered up the following choices:
2600XT GDDR3 - $100
2600XT GDDR4 - $130
2900GT GDDR3 - $170

I'm buying off of newegg, I included the prices above. I'm trying to decide if the extra money between the cards makes them worth getting over the cheaper option. So, I've got a few basic questions:
Is the performance increase between GDDR3 and GDDR4 significant? What about going up to the 2900GT? There's benchmarks out there, but I'm not sure who is the most reliable since THG seems to lack 2 of these cards in their charts and such. Also, where does the 8600GTS fit in with the 2600XT GDDR4 and 2900GT?
14 answers Last reply
More about decide 2600xt gddr3 2600xt gddr4 2900gt
  1. 2900GT
  2. *scoffs*

    The GT is junk, you'd be better off with a vote goes for DDR4, but a high-clocker DDR3 version of the HD 2600XT would be fine.
  3. Ilander said:

    The GT is junk, you'd be better off with a vote goes for DDR4, but a high-clocker DDR3 version of the HD 2600XT would be fine.

    Are you crazy? a 2900GT will beat any 2600XT. It has a 256bit bus and 240 shaders. while the 2600 has 128bit bus and 120 shaders.
  4. 2900GT, or you could save for the Nvidia GT
  5. I would say the 2900gt, though if you can wait a week the HD 3850 will be out for ~$160, and it'll kick the 2900gt's butt
  6. ...The HD 2600 XT 's ring bus is 256-bit, but I won't delve too much into technical aspects here.

    Looks a bit more powerful than the X1950 PRO, so I was wrong there, yeah...but it's not worth the $190 when the HD 3850 (which comes out like next week) will cost the same, or potentially less.
  7. 2900GT is way overpriced and can't beat a $113 X1950 pro. The hD2600XT will keep up with the GT without fsaa in many of the big new games.

    I throw out the HD2900GT as an option for $170 and look between the X1950 pro, HD2600XT, or the HD3850. Imagine buying an HD2900GT and having the 3850 pop up for about the same price within days.

    The digit life charts have the GDDR4 and GDDR3 2600XT in them. Search the games/settings you value and decide if it's worth it ot not.

    My first choice for this price range is out of stock:

    Not bad either though for a 512MB:

    Nice price for a quiet 512MB 2600XT

    My only current beef with the 2600XT is that they are priced the same as weeks ago but no longer come with the Valve black box. So the value went down and the more powerful X1950 pro looks like the better deal. if you don't use FSAA the HD2600XT is good though.
  8. I have a Sapphire 2600XT DDR3 card. For me, it gets the job done. But depending on your expectations, you may want to avoid it. Half-Life 2 Episode 2, Portal, and Team Fortress 2 run well (40+ FPS) on the card with details all on high at 1680*1050 resolution. I can play the UT3 demo with the details maxed (which are actually just medium in the full version of the game) at 1024*768 and the game runs 40-60 fps. If you plan to run games like UT3, Crysis, CoD 4 and such at higher resolutions, you'll want something better than the 2600XT no matter how fast the clock or RAM is. If this is the case, and if you want to stick with an ATI card, you should probably wait for the 3850 and 3870 cards to come out (which I think is tomorrow or early next week) and see how well they perform and how much they cost.
  9. I wouldn't bother with the DDR4 version of the 2600XT. The problem with the 2600XT isn't the memory bandwidth, but the low GPU performance. There simply aren't enough shaders in the chip to make it perform well. This is shown by the 2900GT performing about the same as the 2600XT. Way more shader, same performance.

    Of the two listed cards, I'd look into the 2900GT. Its more expensive, but you can't really overclock the XT any more. You don't overclock the top end chip (XT) you overclock the lower chips. (pro, GT, etc) If the 2900GT can overclock to pro or XT speeds, then it would be a much better card to have, as you could overclock it, allowing the additional shaders it has over the 2600XT to work even more. What I don't know is how much the GT overclocks, or if its even worth it to you.

    At the same time, I know that AMD is releasing new cards soon. (nov 15 if I've heard correctly.) You should definitely hold off a bit and see what changes they bring. At the worst, they will simply drive down the price of the cards you are looking at. At best, you will get better performance for the same price you are looking at now.
  10. I would buy a 1950pro (very good price/performance) or maybe a 3850 that should be on the shelves next week for less than $200.

    But it would be nice to know, what do you want to do with you new card?
  11. I just want to be able to do gaming (possibly some of the DX10 games coming out) at around medium settings or better (1680x1050 resolution). I actually know a decent amount about graphics cards, so I don't need much help. So the 3k series cards are coming out really soon? How realistic are the prices you guys are telling me? The reason I'm not looking into Nvidia is because the card I would get from them (8800GT) isn't really in my price range (about $200 or less).
  12. If you're looking at $200 or less, wait for the 3850. It's supposed to go for around $180, and might perform better than the other ATI cards you listed.
  13. For $179 it beats the X1950XTX, so it will spank the X1950 pro or HD 2900GT.
  14. i have a powercolor 1950Pro with x2 cooler and i can play all my games maxxed out at 1680x1050. which i was surpised lol to be able to do that :lol:
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