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VideoLogic Neon 250 Review

Conclusion

The Neon 250 offers some very interesting technology that in theory can offer major performance gains under certain circumstances. However, when these certain 'circumstances' aren't present, the card doesn't really keep up with the graphics cards in its class. The OpenGL performance in Quake Arena is very good while the visual quality in our entire test suite was excellent. With a little more work on their drivers (and a full OpenGL ICD which won't be easy), I think VideoLogic will have a pretty competitive card on their hands until the prices of the TNT2 Ultra based cards drop (thanks to the GeForce making it's way into stores).

What's the final verdict? If you need a video card that is first-rate at 640x480 in all your applications and respectable at 1024x768 in some games, you may want to check into a lower priced card that can do this too(Savage4, TNT2 M64, ATI Rage 128, VD3 2000). The performance of the Neon 250 in Quake Arena is impressive when compared to the rest of its peers until you hit higher resolution 32-bit color modes (which is what you want from a card in this price range). I have a feeling that the 64-bit memory is holding the card back (imagine the NVIDIA M64 compared to the regular 128-bit TNT2). Although it's very efficient, in some cases it probably needs the higher memory bandwidth that it doesn't have. The overall package will most likely not appeal to everyone because of the competition in the $170 range. If this card was $50 cheaper then I think it would be much more of a bargain but with Matrox, 3dfx and NVIDIA offering such great cards in that price range, I can't possibly suggest buying this card. Without stellar performance at 1024x768 and lack of an OpenGL ICD, I would have to suggest looking elsewhere.