My friend is looking to spend as little as possible to get a 3D card for his system, which is a P4 2.4 w/512mb RAM. Games to be played: Half-Life 2, the new Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory... and others to be sure.
Anyway what is the cheapest card that will run all of today's current gen-games relatively well? $130-ish is the price max. There are so many card variations; what are the best few options?
It's not that I think your friend is a dumb pwit or anything, but please explain, for gaming, the gpu is more important than the cpu. He needs a good gpu, some very special ram, and a highly sophisticated board, could he get that from Intel for $130?
awesome, thanks guys. I'll tell him to go with that 9700pro.. thanks for finding that! And yeah - I'd love to have him to bump it up another hundred to get the GeForce 6600GT... If it was my money I would... but oh well! Thanks again, its much appreciated,
I can't count how many newegg refurbs I have bought. They used to have some amazing deals, but very few good ones now. Before it seemed just a way of getting rid of returned stock...and CHeap. The best deals disappeared within minutes of being posted each day. Me and a buddy would check often, then IM each other with "refurbs up", then it was off to snatch up as many great deals as we could get. Video cards and cases mainly, but also mobos, mem, & cpu. Within a few hours almost all of the video cards were gone. Now though, it's a joke. It's big business now. There are always refurb cards in stock. Some of those cards have been there for ages. Others save you 10% to buy the refurb; no thanks. But there are still occasionally some good deals. Always worth browsing those pages before buying a used card off a stranger.
Anyway, my point to posting, the vast majority of the cards were totally fine. By far my best OC'in Ti4200 was a newegg refurb. My advice when buying their refurbs is: Buy it knowing you are getting a good deal but at a somewhat higher risk of needing to RMA it. Buying just a few, I think you will be just fine. Buy 20, and you are bound to have 1 or 2 problems. So if you are easlily ticked by having the cost/time of rma'ing something, beware. Also, if time is important, you have to realize that an RMA will push you back. Uusally, newegg refunds the money on a refurb and does not replace the card. But that may have changed due to the fact that there are so many refurbs in stock now; it's not just one of a kinds now. So now, you may get a replacement not a refund.
Last and most important. test the refurb right away because I think the time to put in an RMA is 14 days from purchase. Anyway, I'd say you have twice the risk of needing an RMA, but most likely you are getting a perfectly working card that someone rma's because of user error or even a change of mind. Like, those who pop out a GF card and pop in the radeon, installing drivers over each other and have then blame it on a bad card. Or those who upgrade from a GF4Ti to a GFFX that isn't any faster. Or even those who find out after they get the card, that they don't have an AGP slot. :wink:
Man, I just totally forgot who I am responding to with all this. This info is more for the original poster, not Grape, Cleeve, or whoever I may have responded to that may not even be able to buy from Newegg. :redface: