Need advice on a decent graphics card

Ok so im looking to build a new system and need advice on a processor, motherboard and graphics card.

im looking to spend the following:

motherboard up to £100 preferably asus
amd processor around £150
Any graphics card around £150 might go up to £200 if can be convinced of a significant performance increase. Im looking for pci-e as ive heard its much better than AGP.

Im using www.ebuyer.com as a guide, but, so far ive got as far as

amd athlon 64 3500+
asus a8v motherboard
but im totally clueless to the graphics card ive heard sapphire are good but really need some recommendations.

My current setup is

amd athlon 2500+ overclocked to a 3200+ at 2.1 ghz
asus a7n8x deluxe
radeon 9600
1gb ram

looking for a big leap from what ive got at the moment as it was starting to struggle with games. Id appreciate any help that you can give,

Andy
33 answers Last reply
More about need advice decent graphics card
  1. Are you buying in the states or the UK? Ebuyer.com is a US site. Better US sites: Newegg.com, zipzoomfly.com, monarchcomputer.com, outpost.com and ewiz.com, but you need to shop around on those different sites for the best deal.

    If you want a VIA board - then I've heard the AV8 <b>Third Eye</b> is a good choice. I highly recommend getting a board with the nF4 chipset. A couple of good options: Abit AN8+ Ultra, the Epox 9NPA+ Ultra. The Asus A8N-E does not OC as well as the rest and is typically limited to somewhere around 240 FSB.

    Video card: PCIe is not faster than AGP right now, but the bleeding edge cards are not being released in AGP. For 200 pounds you can get a 7800GT in the states ($345 USD at Newegg.com right now). In the 150 pound range you will be looking at an X800XL and the 7800GT is definitely worth the extra cash. Just go take a look at some reviews with benchmarks.

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  2. sorry ebuyer.co.uk the uk site, i was under the impression pci-e was faster because it is read and write?
  3. i had notice dthe X800XL and the 7800GT the x800 GTO also came into the view as well as the x850 pro, to be honest its all confused me, say i go for a x800xl does it matter if its a saphhire or another brand?? how does brand name affect performance?
  4. Sapphire is a good solid mfr for ATI products - you shouldn't have any issues with their cards. Brand name usually affects price more than performance. :eek:

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  5. ok lads heres the two cards i have narrowed it down to comments on which is the best would be aprreciated:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?rb=12599292563&action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=90087


    http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?rb=12599357235&action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=85870


    XFX GeForce 6800 GT PCI-E 256MB 256bit GDDR3 DUAL DVI/TV-out

    Sapphire Radeon X800 XL 512MB GDDR3 PCI-E Dual DVI-I / ViVO (dual slot fan cooler)
  6. Those prices seem high. Between those two I would go for the X800XL 512MB. I know we have some UK guys in these forums - maybe they can point you to some other good sites to look at for better prices. Or maybe I'm just not as familiar with UK pricing on vid cards. :eek:

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  7. ok well if anyone was to spend between 150-220 pounds on a graphics card what would be the best choice? this is soooo difficult, theres some that are better than other some that can be over clocked? im totally stmped :(
  8. If you could get a 7800GTX then that would be my choice. Below that I would get the 7800GT.

    If neither of those fit into the budget, then I would look at a 6800GT or X800XL. <b>You would be extremely happy with either purchase,</b> but I'll give you a little of my thought process behind the purchase that <b>I</b> would make. For AGP, the OC potential of the 6800GT is better than the X800XL so if they're in the same price range then get the 6800GT. Over here, the X800XL has been consistently cheaper than the 6800GT in PCIe. So I would go X800XL in the PCIe unless I found a really good deal on the 6800GT.

    Sounds kinda convoluted, but the best advice I can give is for you to buy the card that has the features that you want, need and will use. If you're not going to OC the vid card, then don't take that into consideration. Make the purchase and get to gaming!

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  9. Looking over your site there, The 7800GT would be a stretch, but well worth it if you can squeeze the money. The <A HREF="http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=96312" target="_new">PNY 7800GT for 199</A> is out of stock. <A HREF="http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=94658" target="_new">Gainwards 7800GT</A> is 222. If your budget is 200 including VAT, then the 7800's are out of range for you though.

    That 6800GT is a nice card but does seem expensive. The 512MB X800XL costs a bit much but I'd take it over the 6800GT if it was the same price. X800XL/6800GT are both good choices.

    Honestly, below 7800GT prices, the best bargain by far looks like the <A HREF="http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=97159" target="_new">256MB X800GTO</A>. It's not quite a X800XL or 6800GT, but at 12pipes and decent clock rates, it's not far behind (almost a X800 pro). And it's less than half the price of that X800XL, which screams bargain to me. You won't beat that price/perfromance ratio.

    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
  10. Great catch! I wonder if the other 4 pipes will unlock on that GTO....

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  11. The HIS costs more but is clocked a bit higher and has the super quiet ICE Q cooling.
    <A HREF="http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?rb=12618598399&action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=97984" target="_new">http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?rb=12618598399&action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=97984</A>

    <A HREF="http://www.digit-life.com/articles2/video/his-6.html" target="_new">Here is a review of that card</A>. It overclocked extremely well, has 1.6ns memory which is sweet for this price card. It also has a 50/50 shot of unocking all 16 pipes if your are into that. Anyway, look over the review. nice card and priced right too.


    Another note, The 256MB X800XL is cheaper than the 6800GT, but like PNY for NV, I am not crazy about powercolor or connect3d for ATI.

    Last thing was a surprise. At your site there, the new X1800XL is almost the same price as the 7800GT (not including the out of stock PNY). The 7800GT beats it more often than it loses, but ATI would have a feature set advantage. Over here in the states, the 7800GT is still $60 cheaper making it an easy choice. Over there, priced the about same, either would be a good choice depending on the individual preference and games.


    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
  12. It's a possibility. Great card for him at 6600GT prices. I've been looking over that site and the HIS GTO would be a nice card to own. Amazing it's got 1.6ns memory on a card that comes clocked at 980-1000 memory. Digitlife hit 550/1280 on that HIS GTO. Considering how poorly the X800XL's tend to OC, I wonder how the 12-pipe HIS GTO would compete with the 16-pipe X800XL when both are OC'ed to the max, without even trying to unlock the 4 pipes on the GTO. Hmmm, I want one of those but the cheapest I have seen it here is $209 which gets near the cheapest X800XL I've seen. But still $40 cheaper than the average XL.


    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Pauldh on 11/01/05 06:48 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
  13. The digitlife review seems to say if its R480 based like theirs, you have a good shot at 16 pipes, just not a sure thing like the GTO2. But they said there's failed as it was locked on the hardware level. So scratch the pipe unlock idea. Quote below:

    <i>"A few words on overclocking. Here are the frequencies we managed to get:

    HIS IceQ II RADEON X800 GTO PCI-E 256MB: 550/1280 MHz
    HIS IceQ II RADEON X800 GT PCI-E 256MB: 545/1170 MHz
    HIS IceQ II RADEON X700 AGP 128MB: 478/1150 MHz

    Speaking of unlocking pipelines: neither X800GTO nor X800GT are amenable to such operation, it was useless to flash BIOS with 16 pipelines. The chips are locked on the hardware level."</i>


    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Pauldh on 11/01/05 06:53 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
  14. yikes im a bit confused now, are we saying the HIS is the way to go im happy to overclock if neccersary, i basically want the best card up to 200 quid, i was looking at the following

    Sapphire Radeon X850 XT 256M PCI-E Retail

    http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?rb=12619927202&action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=83241

    id as i said 150 was a minimum taget 200 maybe a few quid here and there was the upper, basically want the fastest i can get including overclocks, its so difficult to pick i mean is there a massive difference between a x800GTO overclocked and an x850 XT for example, i just want something thats gonna run the latest games for 2-3 years
  15. (best customer service)
    www.scan.co.uk
    www.overclock.co.uk
    www.overclockers.co.uk
    www.aria.co.uk
    www.pcnextday.co.uk

    (sh1test customer service) \/
    www.ebuyer.co.uk
    www.savastore.co.uk

    <font color=purple> Dont expect Miracles humans made them. The blind are easily led by the blind </font color=purple>
  16. You're cheap :wink: , so what do you say:

    Prices include VAT
    6600GT - 108
    X800GTO 256MB - 114
    HIS X800GTO 256MB - 135
    COnnect3D X800XL 256MB - 188
    XFX 6800GT - 205
    Gainward 7800GT - 261

    My opinion is the 6600GT and 6800GT are priced too high to consider. And the GTO's are so much cheaper I'd pass on the XL even. So it would be 7800GT or X800GTO for me from what I've seen on that site.


    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
  17. The X850XT is nice, but that's 251 including VAT right? The 7800GT for 261 would be a much better card. I was trying to find the best value. For instance, while the 6800GT is a higher performing card than the X800GTO, it is not close to being worth the extra money that site is charging. If you want the best and want it to last that long, splurge for the 7800GT as it far outguns the other cards we talked about. Otherwise, the X800XL is about as good as you will get staying under 200. But I am bang for buck driven, so personally at those prices, I'd got all out on the 7800GT or I'd OC' the HIS GTO and buy some games with the extra money saved.

    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
  18. Do you guys have an equivelent to our <A HREF="http://www.pricewatch.com/" target="_new">pricewatch.com</A> where he could search out better pricing? How cheap can a X800XL or 6800GT be found over there? How about the 7800GT?


    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
  19. yes kelkoo.co.uk
    dealtime.co.uk
    theres loads.

    <font color=purple> Dont expect Miracles humans made them. The blind are easily led by the blind </font color=purple>
  20. i soft modded my 6800 12 pipline to 16 pipline does that make me a pussy,lol, i love cats.

    somtimes you can only soft mod cards, i have never seen a hard mod to get the extra 4 piplines working.

    <font color=purple> Dont expect Miracles humans made them. The blind are easily led by the blind </font color=purple>
  21. I will make it simple for you...

    7800GT!!

    You want bleeding edge? You said you have 200quid. i would say if you skimp on the CPU a little and get the 7800GT it will be best.

    a 7800GT & 3200+ is better(by far!!) then an X850XT, 6800GT 6800Ultra, or anything like that 3500+

    But thats only my two cents.

    Get a 3200+ and a 7800GT....OC both. You can get the 3200+ to about 4200+ performance (FX55) and you can get the 7800GT beyond the 7800GTX performance.

    _____________________________
    Chaintech VNF3-250/A64 2800+/1GB(512x2) OCZ VX GOLD 2-2-2-5/BFG 6800GT/Thermaltake 420W/WD 200GB/Maxtor 300GB/Soon to include Z-5500...any ideas on which SC??
  22. is this 7800GT any good?

    http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/products/index.html?rb=12626542939&action=c2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=96312

    if i got this with a 64 3500+ venice would it be faster than a 64 3200+ u said the 3200 can be overclocked...can the 3500 be overclocked higher? finally any recommendations for a decent motherboard was looking at the asus a8v.

    So far im at

    AMD Athlon 64 3500+
    PNY GEFORCE 7800GT 256MB DDR3 PCI-E DUAL DVI/HDTV-out
    Asus A8v (unless someone can suggest a better one i like asus but could be convinced to try another one)
  23. also i was looking at SLI does this card support it? as in a few months time i cud always buy another one and run them side by side...is there any benefit to this if the card supports it?
  24. ok two system setups

    amd athlon 64 4000+, PNY 7800GT, Asus A8v = £560

    or

    amd athlon 64 3500+, PNY 7800GT, Asus A8v = £470

    basically is the 4000+ worth the extra 90 quid? can both be overclocked? im getting close guys just need a little extra help....basically my parents are giving me £400 quid to build a pc..ive got hard drives dvd drives etc...anything above 400 comes out my own pocket.
  25. 4000+ is not worth the extra quid. I'd stick with the 3200+ and go with the Epox 9NPA+ Ultra or the Abit AN8 Ultra. IMO SLI is only for unlimited budgets and people that NEED high res and all eye candy enabled.

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  26. A 4000+ @ stock > a 3500+ @ 2.4GHZ. Either would do nice, but I'm thrilled with the increase of my 4000+ and tight memory timings compared to the OC'ed 3000+ and loose timings I was running with DDR500.

    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
  27. With that PNY so much cheaper and now back in stock, I'd jump on that one. Their warranty is not BFG's, but the card should still be good quality.

    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
  28. Quote:
    A 4000+ @ stock > a 3500+ @ 2.4GHZ.

    Is that impression/feel, benchmarks or both? Did you use a memory divider or 1:1? Try both and see which was better? I figured the 4000+ would be tops still, but the cost saving is worth the performance decrease, IMHO.

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  29. ok boys im gona buy

    amd athlon 64 3500+
    pny Geforce 7800GT
    asus a8n-sli premium

    will that considerably thrash my

    amd xp2500+ oc'd to a 3200+
    sapphire radeon 9600XT
    asus a7n8x deluxe???

    if so woo hoo! guys you dont know how much i appreciate your help

    youve been top draw!
  30. Will COMPLETELY thrash your old system.

    *Steam rising*
    |<font color=red>(\__/)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(='.'=)</font color=red>|
    |<font color=red>(")_(")</font color=red>|
    ~~~~~
    BUNNY STEW FOR DINNER!!
  31. *drools* for a 7800gt
    should have gone pci-e from the beginning :(
  32. You will be VERY happy with this setup

    I know this is kind of late but if you are OC'make sure you get some good ram. <A HREF="http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16820146890" target="_new">Like this</A>

    There is a lot of RAM that will OC well, but this will do you very well...use the product info from this and make sure you get the same thing from the UK.

    _____________________________
    Chaintech VNF3-250/A64 2800+/1GB(512x2) OCZ VX GOLD 2-2-2-5/BFG 6800GT/Thermaltake 420W/WD 200GB/Maxtor 300GB/Soon to include Z-5500...any ideas on which SC??
  33. I knew it! :tongue:

    <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm05=658042" target="_new">3DMark05</A> <A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=3781954" target="_new">3DMark03</A>
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