ATI Radeon X800, 2600HD or 3850 AGP?
I have an old machine I run select games on, such as World of Warcraft, Dead Space, Warhammer Online, and I'm planning on playing Mirror's Edge for PC once it's out. I have a single-core Athlon 64 3400 (running at 2.41 GHz). I had been running an X800 for the longest time, but I replaced it with a 2600HD last year for the updated shader model 3.0. I recently put the X800 back in, because the performance in WoW always appeared to be better before the 2600. My FPS is much better with the speed of the X800, but I've considered ridding of both cards for a Radeon 3850 AGP. Would this card be faster than both I currently own? Is ATI planning a 4000 series in AGP?
The 3850 is the fastest available for the AGP bus. As far as I know, there are no plans for a 4000-series AGP Radeon.
I'm not sure the 3850 is worth it. Your single core processor is probably holding back your performance already, and with the more powerful video card, you'd probably lose most of what it would gain you. And it's not cheap for what it is.
IF you upgrade your video card, I'd find a cheapie AMD Athlon X2 that's at least 2.4GHz. Then your 3850 would have something to work with.
ATi says 450W for best performance.....(originally it don't need that much) Its possible to run with 430W PSU without any problem...
The AGP slot can't supply enough voltage for the HD3850 core, the card uses an eight-pin PCI-E power connector, but the standard 6-pin connector will supply enough voltage...manufacturers supply 4-pin Molex to 6-pin PCI adaptor in the box...
As for HD3850, All the features of the equivalent PCI-E card are present; 320 stream processors, 512-bit internal memory ring, support for shader model 4.0 and DirectX 10.1. Also the GPU features ATI's PowerPlay, technology that reduces power consumption depending on what the card is doing...
None of the above. You can rebuild your PC for about $200.
Case: Keep yours
HDD: Keep yours
DVD: Keep yours
$70 ECS A780GM-A Cheap ATX motherboard
$50 AMD 5000+ dual core, retail
$39 OCZ DDR2 800 2x2GB
Cost $159 + S&H. The onboard from the MB will probably beat what you have now, save up another $100 and get this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814161259
ATI 4850 for $145