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ati 9800 pro, worth upgrading

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Last response: in Graphics & Displays
May 19, 2008 5:07:49 PM

Hello all,

I have a Dell (don't laugh) running a 3.0ht single core processor with 1.5gb of memory and an ATI 9800 pro video card.

I am running racing simulatiors, RFactor, ARCA simracing, papyrus 2003, etc.

I am trying to decide if there is any AGP card that will give me a boost in FPS without upgrading the entire system OR is it just time to toss it in the heap and build new.

Any suggestions or comments?

Thanks for the Help.


More about : ati 9800 pro worth upgrading

a c 148 U Graphics card
May 19, 2008 5:16:28 PM

Most AGP cards are a bit overpriced and limited in which GPU's are supported. Your CPU will really limit the performance of any new GPU anyways so it's sorta like beating a dead horse, if you know what I'm saying. To me it really isn't worth throwing the extra money into your system when it could be saved for a totally new revamped system. You can built a pretty good budget system for $800. That is sort of the sweet spot for systems, you can build a $500 gamer but you have to skimp of several items. I'd save your pennies man and just tough it out until you can do a total overhaul. It's worth it, trust me. The new stuff will knock your booties right off if you have been gaming with that system.
a c 130 U Graphics card
May 19, 2008 7:58:25 PM

robustog said:
Hello all,

I have a Dell (don't laugh) running a 3.0ht single core processor with 1.5gb of memory and an ATI 9800 pro video card.

I am running racing simulatiors, RFactor, ARCA simracing, papyrus 2003, etc.

I am trying to decide if there is any AGP card that will give me a boost in FPS without upgrading the entire system OR is it just time to toss it in the heap and build new.

Any suggestions or comments?

Thanks for the Help.


To be honest it is really time to get a whole new system. But if you have no wish to play newer games then it would be possable to get an increase on that system that would be worth while as long as you have a power supply that can handle a better card. I have my doubts about this as your machine was built around the time when 300 Watt generic PSU's were all the rage.
When i had a system similar to yours 3.0 single CPU, 1Gig Ram and a 9800AIW. I had to upgrade to plat Oblivion,i went from the 9800 to a X800XL which effectivley doubled my FPS, this card was second hand and died after about 8 months. I replaced it with a X1650XT which incorperated SM 3.0 and had HDDR (lighting effects). This was marginally faster still than the X800XL but with better image quality.
Based on that experiance i would say that a 7600GT card which is very good on power and was the standard recomendation to people who posted for an AGP upgrade on a 300 Watt supply, would be a good option for you if you are tight on funds and want one last upgrade. Its performance is about par with the X1650XT and is capable of the same SM 3.0 and effects as the X1650.
Sorry for the long post but i felt it needed explaining properly.
Mactronix :) 
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May 19, 2008 8:26:11 PM

Needs serious upgrading, that's what I'm gonna say
May 19, 2008 9:11:07 PM

Agreed with jay and mactronix. $800 you could build a sweet system that would last you a nice long time and is more satisfactory than spending some $200 on a GPU that would bottleneck. Save up and build from scratch.
May 19, 2008 11:06:21 PM

Thanks for the feedback.

I do not want to waste money so it looks like my best option is BUILD.. LOL

How about some thoughts on this setup:

IGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L ATX All Solid Capacitor Intel Motherboard

EVGA GeForce 8800GTS (G92) 512-P3-N841-AR Video Card

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory

Rosewill RP600V2-S-SL 600W Power Supply

COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-WW Black/Silver Computer Case

Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4GHz LGA 775 Processor

ZALMAN 9500A 92mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 250GB 3.5" SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

Comes in at about 970.00 without shipping.

Thanks again!
May 20, 2008 12:01:01 AM

I'm fine with everything you have listed there EXCEPT for the PSU. Rosewill sucks. Seriously, spend a little extra dough and get a brand name PSU(corsair, PP&C, ect).
May 20, 2008 12:35:36 AM

this one is an extremely efficient PSU and will work great with what you have in that build. It uses an Enhance oem PSU which is known for quality and the price is acceptable and within the same range of the psu u were going to buy. Plus the cables are very short so if you have one of those really small dell cases then it would work well. if not then don't use it, as you may have problems with cable size.

I bet anything that you could get a antec 380 earthwatt,
and this would work.

Plus it is $30 after MIR, if you are picky about cable's being sleeved then just get the seasonic version of that same psu, its also a 380 watt, and the antec is basically a less tidy seasonic 380 watt. Antec uses the seasonic oem's, or if u feel as if that is too little, then go for a

corsair 450 watt is just perfect for you, and within that same ballpark,
although I'm not sure what oem's corsair uses, but they are good psu's as well.
a c 148 U Graphics card
May 20, 2008 3:19:15 PM

Ok we need to edit that list a little bit. Also, have you thought about needing a new XP or Vista license? I don't see that in your list.

1)7200.10 drive are old tech, get the 7200.11 or ES.2 drive. I've never seen a 250GB 7200.11 drive but I actually have the ES.2 drive and the 7200.10 250GB drives. the ES.2 drive IS SOOOOO MUCH FASTER:

2)Roswill sucks at making PSU's, not to be negative, but they SUCK. Corsair makes a great PSU and are decently priced. has then cheap with free shipping. The 520W is plenty for any 1 Graphics card setup.

3)Zalman Coolers are Big and costly, save yourself a few bucks and get the AC 7 Pro. It's a GREAT cooler, I've owned on. Unless you are doing HIGH OC's on air you won't need anything more.

4)Dump the Quad core. If you are gaming or anything other than number crunching, you won't need a quad core. A faster dual core will toast a quad in 90% of apps. The only reason you would need it is video encoding and other things similar. The only people who need a quad core are the people who know for a fact that it would suit them better. Besides the e8400 is a MUCH better overclocker, and $20 cheaper.

5)Not a suggestion but if you decide to keep the q6600, for some odd reason, dump the pc8500 memory for pc6400 (ddr2 800). You won't get a bus clock higher than 400MHZ on the Q6600 so there is no need for faster memory. There really isn't a benefit.

* Great video card selection, I have the XFX and like it alot. If it kept me warm at night I'd love it.
* Good mobo. Gigabyte and Asus are my choice brands. Although I lean toward Asus more for a little extra performance, but the cost is a little higher usually
* If you need the cost to come down we can easily trim it up a little. But that would be a solid build with the suggested changes.
May 20, 2008 4:33:22 PM

^ Strongly agree. +1
May 21, 2008 2:08:23 AM

OK, Here is the link to my updated list. I change almost everything.

The original MB I selected is no longer available, I selected the one it is replaced with. I switched to the e8400. Notice I have two different video cards. I need some opinions on going with the 9600gt or the 8800gts. 9600gy is an 80 savings BUT I don't want to sacrifice the performance for a few bucks, I also don't want to overkill the video since they change constantly. Will the MB support either card?


a c 148 U Graphics card
May 21, 2008 4:25:55 PM

That link didn't work but I was able to manual make a new one:

Oh yeah baby that list looks MUCH better. I have some suggestions, but that list is looking way better:

1) Go with the 8800GTS, It's well worth the $80. Trust me on that one. Now if you were talking about the $80 difference between the 8800GTS and 9800GTX I'd say it isn't worth it but there is about a 20% increase from the 9600gt to 8800GTS for that $80

2) You don't need 1066 memory, 1000 will be just fine and it just as cheap as the 800 memeory. You can save a few bucks there without sacrificing any performance:

3) Maybe look at a nicer motherboard. It is the backbone of the whole deal. Im biased towards Asus because I've never had an issue with them. But looking at the reviews of that Gigabyte board people have issues with Overclocking. Maybe an Asus P5K-E or higher? Just a suggestion on that one, the Gigabyte board will work. this item is really preference.