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GeForceFX 5600 Ultra vs. Radeon 9600 Pro

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  • Radeon
  • Graphics
Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 10, 2003 10:16:37 PM

Building a system and trying to decide on a graphics card. I've tried to read all the into on this site, including this forum, but I can only read too much before I go too cross eyed to recover.

So, I've narrowed my choices down to the Radeon 9600 Pro or the Gainward Ultra 760/XP GS. I will be running a P4 2.6 GHz, IC7-G mobo, and using the computer for gaming as well as possibly video capture and real basic editing. I'm looking to spend around $200 but have come to an impass and can't decide. I've read good things about both but haven't found any info on a comparison of the two. Any suggestions?

More about : geforcefx 5600 ultra radeon 9600 pro

October 11, 2003 12:52:09 AM

Hey bro,

I have never used a non ati card so can't really talk about comparisons but I recently built a system around an abit IS7 mobo and p4 2.4c chip which I am still undecided on wether or not I want to overclock cuz this comp all ready rocks for what I use it for.

My graphics card choice was the radeon 9600 pro till 9800 pro's get a dramatic mark down and I can tell you the 9600 pro is a very decent gaming card and seems a lot more stable than the older ati cards I have used in the past.

I am not an ati fan per say but I like sticking with what has always worked for me and so far I have never really had issues using ati cards. and for the price of the 9600 pro versus a high end card I really don't think you are missing out on too much and why spend insane amounts of money when you can get a decent mid range card?
October 11, 2003 1:11:30 AM

Well, let's see. with the 9600Pro you can get massive overclocks (if you're into that sort of thing). It also runs cool, and requires no extra power source. For dx 8 games, it's a tossup between the 9600 and the fx 5600, with no one card being a decisive victor. Bring dx9 into the equation, and the 9600Pro mops the floor with the fx 5600. Not to mention it also beats the fx 5900 dx9.
My recomendation, go with the 9600Pro.

(then again, I am slightly biased, seeing as how I have a 9600 Pro and loving every minute of it :) )

As each day goes by, I hug my 9600Pro just a little tighter.
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October 11, 2003 1:27:55 AM

9600 Pro, hands down!

My OS features preemptive multitasking, a fully interactive command line, & support for 640K of RAM!
October 11, 2003 2:54:41 AM

Quote:
9600 pro is a very decent gaming card and seems a lot more stable than the older ati cards I have used in the past.


Agreed, on the decent gaming card part. Wasn't the Radeon 7000/7500 a fairly stable chip? I have a Mobility Radeon 7500C on my Laptop & I don't think its cause me any crashes yet. The Radeon 8500LE card I owned was & still is a fine card.

My OS features preemptive multitasking, a fully interactive command line, & support for 640K of RAM!
October 11, 2003 3:31:03 AM

I have same Mobo and Cpu OCed it to 3.0. You want to OC yours send me PM and I show you how.
October 11, 2003 3:32:31 AM

9600 Pro I have TI4200.
a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2003 4:24:22 AM

I have no problems with my original Radeon.

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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2003 3:19:11 PM

Ummm, uh, maybe, you might want to try the R9600XT? Just a thought. The PRO sux, long live XT!.

Otherwise the R9600pro is you best choice of the one's you've listed. And sarge is right, depending on which one you get (some come with inferior memory [powercolor, gigacube, and <i>SOME</i> sapphires], be sure to check if you can BBA boards all have Samsung 2.86ns memory, as do Hercules (pro version))
Be sure to make sure your pro version is indeed properly equiped, gigacube and powercolor have pro versions that are really non-pros with bad/tricky naming schemes.

There was a time when I would've recommended you get either of the two whichever was cheaper (as they were so close in DX8 performance), but with every new DX9 game/benchmark/demo that comes out the R9600P is the clear choice. Also the nice shader effects of the new CAT 3.8 drivers are 'groovy' really spruced up the XIII demo, MMmmm b&W stylised, beautiful!

Anywhoo, I'm sure you're seeing a trend in the recommendations, do some research of your own, just to be sure we're not a pack of roaming ATI PR/sales guys, but I'm sure you'll see a fair amount of supporting evidence if you look at recent reviews.

Good Luck, and let us know when you get whatever you decide on.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! <A HREF="http://www.redgreen.com" target="_new"><font color=green>RED</font color=green> <font color=red>GREEN</font color=red></A> GA to SK :evil: 
October 11, 2003 4:44:07 PM

If you're looking to spend around $200 then you should try to hunt down a 9500 Pro. The 9500 Pro DX9 performance is very good, it has an 8-pixel pipeline versus the 9600 Pro's 4, and it holds up well with FSAA/AF. The only disadvantage is, I believe, that the 9500 Pro requires external power. Sealed-box 9500 Pros are uncommon but they do surface here and there on the internet for around $200.
October 11, 2003 4:50:23 PM

Hunting down 9500 Pros is proving to become more & more of a chore day by day. Its a good choice if you can find one, but there are much easier to find alternative that will more than suffice.

My OS features preemptive multitasking, a fully interactive command line, & support for 640K of RAM!
a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2003 5:04:49 PM

The R9500P/R9700np performance in HL2 was not stellar. The R9600P stayed very close to the r9700np(or was it a pro in the review, it's been so long) in many instances.

In any case, buying an R9500P (even if you could still find one) would be pointless. It's can't be moded to be an R9700np, it's almost guaranteed to be second hand or OEM if it's cheap, and thus no warranty like the newer cards. I doubt you'll find a 'new' R9500P for anything significantly cheaper than an R9600P, and $200 is WAY too much to pay for an old R9500Pro, which is probably why YOU are still finding them. Be sure to blow off their dust after it's shipped to you.

The only real 'other' option would be an R9700non-pro which would destroy all of the above in almost every benchmark (save the occasional R9600P core speed advantage benchmark). They are also very rare, but they are the better investment than the R9500Pro, even the risky R9500non-pro is too much of a risk to pass up the R9700np or R9600p, unless you are willing to be stuck with an underperforming R9500np should things not work out.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! <A HREF="http://www.redgreen.com" target="_new"><font color=green>RED</font color=green> <font color=red>GREEN</font color=red></A> GA to SK :evil: 
October 11, 2003 8:29:54 PM

I apologize for misquoting that price. On eBay sealed-box 9500 Pro auctions are closing at around $160-170, so basically the price is identical to the 9600 Pro. If you buy direct from an online store they'll charge probably $200. I like the 9500 Pro more personally, but it might be too much effort for you to hunt down a sealed box. The difference in performance is not THAT much in comparison to the 9600 Pro. By the way, why does the THGC Buyer's Guide quote the 9600 Pro as being "slower than Radeon 9500 Pro"?
a b U Graphics card
October 12, 2003 1:20:49 AM

Quote:
By the way, why does the THGC Buyer's Guide quote the 9600 Pro as being "slower than Radeon 9500 Pro"?

Well first of all forget everything you ever knew about the Buyer's Guide. Even Lars said he needed to re-work it.

However that statement is correct under many circumstances. The thing is that it's turning out that the old benchmarks are not consistent, and the OC'ability of the R9600P allows many other gaps to close. Depends on what you're measuring. If you turn on AA/AF usually the R9500P will pull away. The main thing is that the R9600XT is using the LOW-K process and likely is an even better overclocker than my R9600P (which is very good 535/360[720]) at 550 the R9600XT will have equal fill-rate to the R9500P since it's twice the speed despite half the pipes. And at $199US that's pretty damn atractive. And considering that I can buy and BBA R9600P retail box here in Canada for less than $210 ($155 US) in store, I'd think that you could get on for cheaper than an R9500P in the US (usually cheaper than us poor Canadians [despite the fact that they are 'made' here.

The main thing is that the R9500P is a GREAT card, but if we are going for the hard to find, then an R9700non-pro is a much better choice, especially if anyone plans on playing games like HALO (which stresses even an R9800Pro).

In any case, just going from experience I'd say that those would be my two choices, the R9700n-p if you're willing to look for it, and an R9600XT if you can get one within a week or so, but from those that were originally mentioned the R9600Pro is the right choice.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! <A HREF="http://www.redgreen.com" target="_new"><font color=green>RED</font color=green> <font color=red>GREEN</font color=red></A> GA to SK :evil: 
October 12, 2003 3:41:13 PM

I can't remember exact benchmarks but I do remember the 9600P doing very well with AA/AF turned on as compared to the 9500P. I very well may be using the 9600XT in the near future when I build my friends' computers. If it goes for $200, however, it might be well worth it for them to just dish out another $30-40 and snag a 9800NP. But, we'll see when the benchmarks come out.
October 12, 2003 4:11:13 PM

What about 9800SE? It's slightly more expensive but it's always 9800 with only 4 pipes being guaranted to work (and chances for all 8 working)
October 12, 2003 4:51:38 PM

Hi

When comparing VC Memory, I would think 256MB would RULE when you compare these 2 VC's ???

Radeon 9600 Pro 128MB Memory [4x Pipe]
GeForceFX 5600 Ultra 256MB Memory [4x Pipe]

-----------------------------------------------------
RADEON™ 9600 XT [pre-order] US $199.00 CDN $299.00
RADEON™ 9800 XT [buy now] US $499.00 CDN $749.00

Product Comparison:
http://www.ati.com/products/radeon9600/radeon9600pro/co...

Have a Great Quest,
King Jim



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October 12, 2003 5:32:53 PM

Quote:
What about 9800SE? It's slightly more expensive but it's always 9800 with only 4 pipes being guaranted to work (and chances for all 8 working)

Why buy that when a 9600PRO is cheaper, faster, and cooler running? Remember, the 9800SE is pretty much a 9500NP, which the 9600PRO easily defeats.

<b>Qui habet aures audiendi audiat</b>
a b U Graphics card
October 12, 2003 7:58:32 PM

I don't think that the 256mb on ANY current cards REALLY gets that much use. I wouldn't recommend spending the premium above an R9800Pro to anyone except the MOST ardent and wealthy gamers.

256mb on an R5600/R9600 class product is pretty much useless IMNSHO.



- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! <A HREF="http://www.redgreen.com" target="_new"><font color=green>RED</font color=green> <font color=red>GREEN</font color=red></A> GA to SK :evil: 
October 12, 2003 8:18:50 PM

speed of 550 on a 9600 are impossible . i cant hardly get 450 on my 9800pro soooooooooooo.....

My own beast: Athlon 2700xp+ , Radeon 9800pro (oc: 400/360) , 512mb ddr400. SO MUCH faster than my father pIII 550......
October 12, 2003 8:34:25 PM

The 9600XT core clocks at 500MHz. They're using "Low-K Process" on it to achieve such a high clock speeds without the tremendous heat- perhaps someone here would like to enlighten us as to the details of Low-K. Don't let the 9600XT's high frequency fool you- the 9800P doesn't require such speeds because, well, the transistor count on a 9800P GPU is HUGE compared to the 9600 family, and, also, the 9800P has an 8-pixel pipeline vs. the 9600's 4. In other words, the 9800P does a hell of a lot more in one clock cycle than a 9600. The 9600XT's higher core frequencies basically help it compensate for its 4-pixel pipeline.
a b U Graphics card
October 12, 2003 8:48:12 PM

You're SCHTOOPID! Your R9800POS SUX! :tongue:

BTW, I get my R9600PRO (not LOW-K process) running stable at 535/365 so 550 on the new XT is NOT impossible, especially since there are alot of people out there running the REGULAR R9600P at 550-600mhz (I've seen a few go well above 600).

So nothing's impossible. The SCARY thing, is that that's on STOCK COOLING (the 600+ ones are with volt mods, and special cooling)

Anywhooo, we shall see. I'm VERY Interested in seeing what they can do with the XT. HEHE, EVIL Goalie EXTREME! :evil: 


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! <A HREF="http://www.redgreen.com" target="_new"><font color=green>RED</font color=green> <font color=red>GREEN</font color=red></A> GA to SK :evil: 
a b U Graphics card
October 12, 2003 8:58:40 PM

Xbit Labs, I think, had a good blurb the LOW-K announcement (especially since it pokes at nV's wounds :evil:  at not being able to make it succesful considering they started r&D first). I just remember someone doing a page with cursory info on the process, I think I MAY have bookmarked it at work (have to wait to tuesday to get it, Thanksgiving in Canada)

I'll see if I can find it, and I'll post it here.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! <A HREF="http://www.redgreen.com" target="_new"><font color=green>RED</font color=green> <font color=red>GREEN</font color=red></A> GA to SK :evil: 
October 12, 2003 9:41:33 PM

Does the BBATI 9600PRO have any mounting holes for 3rd party cooling? Or is the heatsink/fan glued on?

<b>Qui habet aures audiendi audiat</b>
October 13, 2003 4:47:51 PM

Maybe you should wait for 9600XT it'll have higher clock frequencies than 9600pro and new auto overcloaking feature and it's supposed to cost about 199$
[Edit] lol a small grammar mistake :)  there should be overclocking:) 

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Michaelius on 10/13/03 04:52 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
October 13, 2003 7:27:24 PM

New auto clocking feature thats kool.
!