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Best AGP Silent Video Card

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 23, 2005 11:50:18 PM

I am hoping to build a small form factor PC for playing games and using as a Media center PC. I have already decided on a separate TV Tuner so I just need a good graphics card which is fanless.

The PC will have an Athlon XP or Sempron precoessor running at about 3000+ - 3200+ with 1GB of RAM, and an AGP slot. For this rig what is the ideal solution for a silent video card which performs reasonably well and not cost a lot (my budget is rather tight with the limit being £50). One important feature is that they must have DVI output for High Definition and have at least 128MB RAM so I can view 1080p WMV HD videos at a smooth framerate.

I was thinking of either a Radeon 9250, 9550 or 9600 if they come in fanless versions or Geforce FX5200, FX5300 or FX 5500 but I need expert opinion in this area. Any ideas?

PC Spec: AMD Athlon XP 2000+, ECS K7S5A Motherboard, 768MB SDRAM PC133, Sparkle nVidia Riva TNT2 M64 32MB AGP Graphics Card, Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 6.1, Windows XP

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a b U Graphics card
July 24, 2005 6:33:06 AM

Gainward has a passively cooled 6600GT!

Oops, sorry, it's Gigabyte.

They also have a passively cooled 6800, X800, and X800 XL.

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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>
July 24, 2005 1:03:38 PM

I have seen that on the nVidia website but I never knew who produced the fanless version of that card. Will I get just as reliable performance from the fanless card as I will from one cooled with a fan. Whilst I will apprechiate the lack of a whiring sound when playing games at high resolutions I won't apprechiate constant crashing because of overheating.

Is the card you suggested within my budget range?

PC Spec: AMD Athlon XP 2000+, ECS K7S5A Motherboard, 768MB SDRAM PC133, Sparkle nVidia Riva TNT2 M64 32MB AGP Graphics Card, Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 6.1, Windows XP
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July 24, 2005 3:24:17 PM

The gigabyte is a reliable card, but your price range does not come close.
July 24, 2005 6:58:48 PM

If only I could afford more - The next best I can get is a Geforce 6200 256MB - this is within my price range. When looking at the specs it seems that this is the equivalent of a Radeon 9550 or 9600 card which leaves me with one question. Should I get an ATi Radeon 9550 or 9600 or a Geforce 6200?

If I got the nVidia card it would mean seamless installation as I already have the latest Forceware drivers which have support from TNT2 chipsets up to this particular chipset.

PC Spec: AMD Athlon XP 2000+, ECS K7S5A Motherboard, 768MB SDRAM PC133, Sparkle nVidia Riva TNT2 M64 32MB AGP Graphics Card, Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 6.1, Windows XP
a b U Graphics card
July 24, 2005 8:26:59 PM

9600 standard would be an OK card.

<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
July 24, 2005 8:27:44 PM

Oh, if the case ventilation isn't perfect and the 9600 version you get has a small sink, I'd use a larger one. And leave the slot below it open for better airflow.

<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>
July 25, 2005 8:25:57 PM

Thanks for that warning - as a force of habit I NEVER use PCI slot 1 as it always conflicts with the IRQ of the AGP slot and also easily cooks with the heat from the graphics. Ages ago when a computer engineer reassembled my PC he placed the Audigy 2 right next to the AGP graphics card and was surprised when the system struggled to run stable and kept conflicting - worst of all he blamed my Logitech cordless mouseman optical for the conflicts!!!

So which one issit then - Radeon 9600 or Geforce 6200?

PC Spec: AMD Athlon XP 2000+, ECS K7S5A Motherboard, 768MB SDRAM PC133, Sparkle nVidia Riva TNT2 M64 32MB AGP Graphics Card, Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 6.1, Windows XP
a b U Graphics card
July 26, 2005 4:27:22 AM

9600 non-pro beets 6200.

<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>
July 26, 2005 4:29:01 AM

not if the 6200 can unlock the 4 disabled pipes:D 
a b U Graphics card
July 26, 2005 4:31:52 AM

Yes, well, I heard somewhere that you can't do it on the newer core revisions.

<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>
July 26, 2005 4:52:43 AM

Yeah you can only do it on the old AGP ones, with the HSI bridge.
July 26, 2005 12:34:49 PM

Oh strange - so much for the newer cards being faster. I would have thought that Geforce 6200 would be faster because of it's support for Pixel shader 3.0 (or is that only the 6600 and 6800 cards?) Also new games like San Adreas, Battlefield 2, all specify that their ideal chipset is a Geforce 6 Series and with older games like Far Cry benefitting from Pixel Shader 3.0 technology, wouldn't it make sense that the Geforce 6 series is faster and superior to the Radeon 9600 especially considering the Radeon 9xxx series doesn't support pixel shader 3.0 technology? That totally befuddles me!

PC Spec: AMD Athlon XP 2000+, ECS K7S5A Motherboard, 768MB SDRAM PC133, Sparkle nVidia Riva TNT2 M64 32MB AGP Graphics Card, Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 6.1, Windows XP
July 26, 2005 2:26:33 PM

bottomline is that with the 50 quid/vat/m-segment limitation, theres precious little a contest between those choices unless of courseyoure lucky enough to stumble upon a jewel like an nv6200 that unlocks/shares the same core
with its 6600/GT nv43(rev.A1/A2/A3 8x1,3vp)/128bit/128mb cousins and still have o/c headroom if/when you do decide to stretch that pennywise pound "tool-ery" to your advantage...tons of reviews out there that we all have easy excess/access to, so dont be confuzzled and astoinded no more.
July 26, 2005 4:09:23 PM

So you now suggesting that I get the Geforce 6200?

PC Spec: AMD Athlon XP 2000+, ECS K7S5A Motherboard, 768MB SDRAM PC133, Sparkle nVidia Riva TNT2 M64 32MB AGP Graphics Card, Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 6.1, Windows XP
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
July 26, 2005 5:17:59 PM

Th 9600 was mid-range last generation, The 6200 is low-range new generation(altough the 7800, they didnt spawn in the low end yet...).

Even if the card Support SM3.0 its utterly slow at it and renders it useless. It ineherited this feature from the bigger ones but is so crippled that it cant run it.

They say GTA:Sa and BF2 will run better on gf6 because they're part fo "The way its meant to be played" nVidia's marketing efforts.

Go with the 9600, if your lucky have a bit more money you might find pro's of this card...

Asus P4P800DX, P4C 2.6ghz@3.25ghz, 2X512 OCZ PC4000 3-4-4-8, MSI 6800Ultra stock, 2X30gig Raid0
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