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Best Gaming Graphics Cards For The Money: AGP Interface

Best Video Cards For The Money: August '08
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Best AGP Card for Under $100:

Radeon HD 2600 PRO | | Codename: | RV630 | | Process: | 65nm | | Universal Shaders: | 128 | | Texture Units: | 8 | | ROPs: | 4 | | Memory Bus: | 128-bit | | Core Speed MHz: | 600 | | Memory Speed MHz: | 500 (1000 effective) | | DirectX / Shader Model | DX 10 / SM 4.0 |

In this category we’re recommending the low-priced Radeon 2600 PRO. This card is almost as fast as the older GeForce 7600, but can now be found for about $75 on the aging AGP bus, making it a good buy.

Best AGP Card for $100:

Radeon HD 2600 XT | | Codename: | RV630 | | Process: | 65nm | | Universal Shaders: | 128 | | Texture Units: | 8 | | ROPs: | 4 | | Memory Bus: | 128-bit | | Core Speed MHz: | 800 | | Memory Speed MHz: | 700 (1400 effective) | | DirectX / Shader Model | DX 10 / SM 4.0 |

The 2600 XT is relatively new to the AGP scene, but almost as cheap as its PCIe cousin. This is a decently fast DirectX 10 card for AGP, and surprisingly offers a great deal of performance at the $100 price point. Be forewarned that it’s been reported that the official AMD drivers don’t work with the AGP version of this card, but that the modified Omega drivers work fine.

Best AGP Card For $140:

Radeon 3850 512MB
Codename: RV670
Process: 55nm
Universal Shaders: 320
Texture Units: 16
ROPs: 16
Memory Bus: 256-bit
Core Speed MHz: 670
Memory Speed MHz: 833 (1666 effective)
DirectX / Shader Model DX 10.1 / SM 4.0

Forever rumored and now finally available to purchase, the Radeon 3850 is a curiously powerful card for the aging AGP bus. In fact, it’s a bit too powerful to be properly utilized with the single-core CPUs that are typically found on this platform.

Regardless, this is the most powerful AGP card you can get. Maybe you have an AGP gaming system you just can’t bear to part with, or perhaps you have an older system with both a dual-core CPU and AGP slot: whatever the reason, you can’t get better than an AGP 3850. If anyone ever releases a more powerful card in the future for the dying bus, we’ll be incredibly surprised.

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