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Gaming and ATi Graphics Cards

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 10, 2009 8:37:22 PM

Hi all, just a quick question relating to ATi graphics cards, a few years back I dropped ATi cards as I had trouble with them - the game which kinda broke the camels abck was Knights of the Old Republic. I first got KOTOR when it was released on the PC (well I had it for Xbox before but its irrelevant). At the time I had an ATi card, 9800 I believe as I bought that when it was *** hot if memory serves me well... now all was good BUT in KOTOR I noticed that there was no bloom effects on anything...

The game was playable but lacking a little flavour as the lightsabers were just sticks, the metal didn't gleam in the sunlight and the lights were just cardboard flats. I replaced it with an Nvidia card a while later which ran all the effects fine, and since then I've always been a bit.... loathsome to by an ATi card, for fear or missing features.

However the 5800 series is currently tempting me but I need to know - How does KOTOR look in the ATi cards these days since they are much newer with newer drivers?

In addition I found that there are OTHER issues with them on more recent games such as pixellated DOF, heres a thread I found off Google talking about peoples troubles on Mass Effect and also mentioning problems with the Witcher too:

http://meforums.bioware.com/viewtopi...forum=127&sp=0

I mean I've been looking at the new 5800 series but if ATi are STILL having trouble making cards that run the effects they are meant to without trouble I'm put off... I mean there are plenty of people on here who have 4800 cards and newer, are these issues still in existance?

It would really help me out to hear from more recent users of ATi cards to hear if such issues have been wiped out, whether since taken over by AMD or not!
a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2009 9:14:39 PM

If you're hoping to buy a 5800 series ATI video card JUST to play KOTOR you're wasting a lot of money. The newer generation video card alone isn't going to make KOTOR look any better, simply because those affects and such were not programmed into the game's engine.

I have KOTOR as well, awesome game. :) 

Something to keep in mind however, is that between ATI and nVidia both have little driver related graphical problems now and again, with different games. Some games favor ATI cards, other games seem to favor nVidia based cards. It's all about how the game is designed. I haven't used an ATI card since my X1950 Pro, but I don't think I'd call ATI plagued in today's market.

EDIT: If you're hoping to play other more modern games, the ATI 5800 series is reviewing as a very capable video card, with excellent performance. However, you should keep in mind it is the FIRST DirectX 11 video card to hit the market, and there are essentially ZERO DirectX 11 games right now. So no one really has any idea if there will be any future problems with first generation DirectX 11 games, in regards to ATI's very first DX11 GPU.
October 11, 2009 7:52:56 AM

Fair enough, the main thing for me so far is that I've come across a lot more graphical glitches that people have had with ATi cards which I'm hoping is less of an issue now, I mean with The Witcher and Mass Effect are there still the DoF problems?

Its true with the DX11 card but there is no sign of *when* Fermi (sp?) from NVidia will hit no? I mean what are the chances its by the end of the year?
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2009 8:00:45 AM

You will always find problems with something if you go looking for them, especially on the internet. A search for "ATi graphical problems" will yield as many results in as many games as "NVidia graphical problems" I'd assume. What matters is what is having problems specifically in games you play, and whether its isolated or large-scale, which is what you need to put some research into. Neither company has large-scale problems with graphics these days, and if they do, it's most likely the game developers fault and not the GPU manufacturer.
a c 212 U Graphics card
October 11, 2009 1:10:58 PM

I have also historically had some issues with ATI cards w/ about 2/3 of them being specific game related. As far as "effects" go, one of the things that may be relevant to you is PhysX which "normally" is reserved only for nVidia cards. See the review here for example and you'll understand why I am a lot more interested in PhysX at the moment than DX11.

http://firingsquad.com/hardware/batman_arkham_asylum_ph...

However, someone has hacked the nVidia driver which normally disables PhysX if it detects ATI video cards. So now, many people are grabbing a 3rd nVidia card to run PhysX on top of the Xfire ATI cards. The hack involves installing two video drivers at the same time which is possible only under Windows 7.

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/nvidia-ATI-physx-patch...

Thing is, nVidia's next driver release will probably block the hack.
a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2009 11:09:43 PM

Then theyll just hack that.
nVidia needs to be writing drivers to play games, not write drivers to play games with their competitor
a b U Graphics card
October 12, 2009 1:38:07 AM

Nvidia's driver team does have a lot of free time on their hands right now, it's not as if they have any new cards to write drivers for.
a b U Graphics card
October 12, 2009 1:48:55 AM

Last time pixelated DoF reared its head was with the x1900 series btw. We've moved on since then somewhat.
December 6, 2010 5:03:55 PM

i once had a p4 motherboard from mercury with 1.5 ghz processor 512 mb ddr1 ram and an atiradeon 9200 se video card. while playing the games simcity (even at expansions too) the land will be visible, theroads house, people and other things built over land will fade when i move my mouse.

now i have an asus p5n73 am 2.50 ghz intel dual core motherboard, with onboard 256 mb vram,
i have a total 4 gb ddr2 ram now, at browsing or certain situations under windows 7 the desktop window manager turns off itself in nvidia.

i recommend get a card that favours in playing your favourite ! .
!