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PLEASE HELP! Best 2X AGP Slot Card?

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March 27, 2004 4:56:50 PM

Hi People:

I am looking for a video card upgrade for my old "K6-2-550" computer. I use it primary for BT download the video files. The motherboard is "ASUS P5A" and with only "2X AGP slot" support and is using a "TNT2 32MB" card now.

My goal is to be able to watch high quality video files with no lag and play simple 3D RPG games(which i can't do now without lag).

Will a upgrade help me to watch those video files. Which new cards in store can I buy? Please help.

PS. If you guys are selling second handed cards that fit my system, please let me know^^

Thanks in advance!

More about : agp slot card

March 27, 2004 5:36:02 PM

As far as I know, you should be able to upgrade to any card except the radeon 9600SE/Pro/Non-Pro/XT so theoretically you could stick a radeon 9800 Pro in there, but I would reccomend something around the Geforce 4 Ti level as these currently offer very good performance for little price.

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a b U Graphics card
March 28, 2004 5:03:07 AM

The ATI 9600 series, and the 9800XT, are not keyed for 3.3v slots (AGP2x). Everything else is, so you could use a 9800 Pro, for example. If you don't have $200 for a 9800 Pro, see if you can find a used 9700 Pro cheaper. Or get a Non-Pro. Or a 9500 Pro. Stay away from the 9500 non-pro or 9800SE for performance reasons.

If you can't even come up with that kind of money, perhaps you can find a GeForce4 Ti4200 for under $100 new.

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a b U Graphics card
March 28, 2004 10:08:31 PM

He does play games, and the 9800 Pro would be faster than a 9700 Pro, that being faster than a 9500 Pro, that being faster than a Ti4200, that being faster than a 9100, etc, even WITH the CPU bottleneck. I'd stand by my Ti4200 recommendation, with the caution that the board MIGHT not have enough power to the AGP bus for it. The 9800 Pro at least uses external power!

The 9600 would be ideal for him if it supported 3.3v signals, but alas it doesn't.

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<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
a b U Graphics card
March 29, 2004 1:21:35 AM

I have to agree with you that putting a R9800 Pro/9700 Pro on that setup is a complete waste unless he is planning on soon upgrading the rest of the system to match the Video card. Otherwise, R8500le or Ti4200 is the most I'd consider putting on that setup. I have a PIII550 @ 617MHz with a R8500le and it can not play MOHAA:Breakthrough smooth enough even at 640x480 low detail. And a PIII is way quicker than a K62. I haven't tried it, but I doubt moving my R9800 Pro over would make things much/any better.



ABIT IS7, P4 2.6C, 512MB Corsair TwinX PC3200LL, Radeon 9800 Pro, Santa Cruz, TruePower 430watt
a b U Graphics card
March 29, 2004 1:32:13 AM

My concerns are that we are setting him up for dissapointment no matter what he upgrades to. How well will a K62-550 handle high quality (large) video files. Also, consider the speed of his Ram, how much ram does he have, and How ancient/slow the HDD could be too. He needs to spend a couple hundred upgrading the Mobo/CPU/Mem/video card, not a couple hundred on a Video card alone. Do you think there is life left in a K6-2 beyond MS Office/email/web surfing? Enoungh so to warrant an expensive upgrade on the GPU?


ABIT IS7, P4 2.6C, 512MB Corsair TwinX PC3200LL, Radeon 9800 Pro, Santa Cruz, TruePower 430watt
a b U Graphics card
March 29, 2004 1:43:37 AM

In fact, I do. Game performance doesn't scale evenly with CPU speed, a good GPU could probably get him 1/2 the performance of a 2GHz machine with the same GPU. Now, that can mean dropping from 50FPS to 25, but if you drop the resolution you can usually get back up to 30 for relatively smooth game play.

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May 31, 2004 2:43:16 PM

Hi supramessiah,

I fear some of the replies you have received may have erroneous information about the compatibility of current ATI graphics cards with 2x 3.3v agp equipped mobos. If you have a look at http://www.ati.com/support/faq/agpchart.html you will see that the only new ATI card you can buy for your system is the 9200.

I have been researching this very issue because my mobo (BX/ZX440) also has a 2x agp slot and I want to upgrade my ageing 8MB(!) video card. Ironically, the discontinued 9500 and 9700 are much faster and more advanced than the 9200 and are DX9 compliant 2x agp compatible cards. You would have to scrounge one up second-hand if you wanted what could well end up being the fastest 2x agp compatible graphics cards that will ever be made. Because they hold their own against ATI's current offerings, they're quite rare on the second-hand market. Expect to pay more than twice what you would for a new 9200. Your CPU will be the performance bottleneck, so realistically you might get around a 25% increase in performance with a 9700 over a 9200.

ATI are about to announce a new entry-level card to replace the 9200. Designated X300 I have no idea what the AGP interface will be. Rumour has it that this card will be twice as powerful as the 9200. Watch the news bulletins this week for early reports on the new card. BTW, if the 9200 ends up being your choice, go for the pro version with the 128-bit bus, the SE has the bus retarded to 64-bits.
May 31, 2004 4:58:10 PM

I had an old K6-2 500mhz before I upgraded and found that it was useless to upgrade that system because of the CPU. If you want to watch high quality video get a faster CPU and even with an onboard videocard you'll be able to watch it better than upgrading just the videocard w/k6.

Shuttle XPC SN45G
Athlon XP 3200+
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Corsair 512mb ddr400
Radeon 9600 Pro
WD 160GB HDD
Toshiba DVD-RW
a b U Graphics card
June 1, 2004 4:18:14 AM

No, I'm 100% sure the information I supplied is 100% accurate. Tom's even tested a 9700 Pro a while back on an old Socket 7 platform. And the 9800 Pro is also keyed for 3.3v signals. Also there's the PowerColor 9800SE, which uses the 9700 Pro PCB, but only has 4 pipeline of the newer 9800 core enabled.

YOUR choices are ANY dual-keyed cards, including 9800 dirivatives that are dual-keyed, and a whole mess of nVidia cards.

And the Ti4200 is a better card than the Radeon 9200.

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a b U Graphics card
June 1, 2004 4:22:01 AM

BTW, if you're going by compatability listed at ATI, DON'T. They originally posted the AIW 9600 Pro was AGP2x compatable when it didn't even have the 3.3v KEY. After I personally hounded them about it during a review, they relented and changed the information on the website. Unfortunately they also pulled the AGP2x information on cards that still WERE AGP2x compatable.

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a b U Graphics card
June 1, 2004 4:23:00 AM

Oh, and if you check the Classifieds section, user phial is selling a new 9500 Pro there, I've tested that one personally. Of course I used an AGP2x board.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
a b U Graphics card
June 1, 2004 4:28:46 AM

A DVD Decoder Card allows people to watch perfectly smooth video in the formats supported by the card, regardless of the speed of the CPU. Sigma Designs now produces such cards with MPEG4 support, the old ones were MPEG/MPEG2 only.

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June 1, 2004 5:34:46 PM

I have a K6-2+ 533 MHz cpu designed to run at 133x4 that overclocks well... and I will be wanting to sell it after I build a new computer for my mother...

The "+" CPU kicks the K6-2 CPU's @ss...

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NF7-S/Barton 2500+
200x11.5 1.76v
512MB XMS PC2700
XFX Ti4200
June 1, 2004 5:50:39 PM

Totally out of left field here, but if all you want is to watch video files and play a few RPGs, why don't you just buy an Xbox and mod it to play videos. Tom's just did a full review of the capabilities of a modded XBox and it's pretty impressive.
June 4, 2004 2:54:02 PM

@crashman:

As stated in my earlier post, I was indeed refering to ATI's compatibility list. I have since checked your claims about the 9800 at manufacturer's websites and indeed you are correct, they do support 2x AGP. The 9600 we agree, is not 2x AGP compatible. The 9700 and 9500 are (according to ATI) discontinued parts, though there are still a few left in the retail channels. I think it's sad that ATI don't post accurate information about their own products. I guess they have some hidden agenda for doing so ($$$).
June 4, 2004 5:14:36 PM

Any 8500, 9000, 9100, or 9200 card should do you fine.

*Dual PIII-800 @900 i440BX and Tualeron 1.2 @1.7 i815*
a b U Graphics card
June 4, 2004 6:53:42 PM

Here's what I think happened: The people designing the stuff aren't always communicating properly with the marketing department, so the information originally published on the AIW 9600 Pro was probably coppied from the 9700 Pro web page and modified in whatever way the marketing department thought was appropriate. And the AGP2x/1.0 stuff was simply an oversight. So when I brought it to their attention, they removed the AGP2x/1.0 compatability information from the AIW9600 Pro and the 9800 Pro simultaniously, again out of ignorance, this time erroniously removing it from the 9800 Pro.

From another post:

I've heard that the latest 9800 Pros are using the R360 core of the XT...there's always the slim chance the R360 doesn't have AGP 1.0 support like the R350 (original 9800 Pro) core did. But I don't think they'd put them on dual-keyed cards if that were the case.

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