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Old 07-07-02, 02:08 PM   #1
Feneant
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I need video card recommendation

I still use a Voodoo 5500 which is a nice card, but won't cut it anymore so I will put it in my old pc and look for a new card for my main pc. The problem is I am buying a house very soon so I my budget for a card is VERY low... I am looking for something with an Nvidia chipset unless I can be assured that a Radeon will be supported for a while, it's just that everything now is Nvidia supported with 3dfx somewhere in the background is supported at all.

The card's primary use is gaming, I don't do multimedia work so don't care for any of that, but I do gaming such as MMORPG's and shooters (online ones), meaning I need a card which is quick and will give me a 30+ frame per second rate. What is a good card I can get where I won't be losing too much in a performance to price ratio? I can say now that Any GeForce 4 cards (except Mx's which are nothing but a GeForce 2 MX if I read correctly) are way out of my reach.... I can spend perhaps 125$ US tops on a card including the taxes if even that much... I used to have a pretty unlimited computing budget during college since I lived at home, but now it's down to about 5% of what it was...

Any suggestions?
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Old 07-07-02, 03:16 PM   #2
Amator
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In the $60 range:

GeForce2 MX400 64mb SDRAM


In the $100-125 range:

GeForce4 MX440 64mb DDR (I wouldn't reccomend G4 MXs, get a GF2 MX and save for a G4Ti if you want a GF4)
ATI Radeon 7500
GeForce 3 Ti200 (have seen this one go for 100-200 US)
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Old 07-07-02, 03:19 PM   #3
goatweed
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I have a GeForce3 Ti500 board, and using pricewatch I found it for $128.00 w/free UPS shipping (here is the link to the actual vid card). This board rocks, and for this price, it is well worth it. Sure, a GF4 is a faster board, but most games that are out now will not come close to using the horsepower that the GF4's provide.

An alternative to the GF3 Ti500 is the Ti200 which is a slower (by default) board, but it's still a GF3 and can be safely overclocked to near GF3 specs. I'm not a fan of overclocking, and the $128 would be the way I go to get one of these boards.

Some people may recommend ATI boards, but they are infamous for poor driver support (although admittedly, they are getting better). I would personally stick with Nvidia-based GPU's.

Hope this helps. Also, avoid any MX boards - at these prices, there really is no need to go with any less than a GF3 board.

edit : Here is a link to a Ti200 board from the same e-tailer. It goes for $83.
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Old 07-07-02, 04:06 PM   #4
agent2099
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Quote:
Originally posted by Hari Seldon
In the $60 range:

GeForce2 MX400 64mb SDRAM


In the $100-125 range:

GeForce4 MX440 64mb DDR (I wouldn't reccomend G4 MXs, get a GF2 MX and save for a G4Ti if you want a GF4)
ATI Radeon 7500
GeForce 3 Ti200 (have seen this one go for 100-200 US)
Where are you getting your prices?

Geforce 2 GTS ~ $50 (better than the Geforce 2 mx)
Geforce 4 MX ~ $75 (not $100-$125)


Feneant, your best bet is the Radeon 8500 for $98 www.newegg.com . It's the best bang for the buck right now.
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Old 07-07-02, 04:42 PM   #5
Feneant
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Most retailers you name are in the US :

How about these card :
ATI RADEON 8500LE 64MB DDR AGP4X OEM
What can you tell me about it? It's 146$ Cdn (85$ or so US with current exchange I think)... is it worth it? Seems my most likely bet.

The 7500 : ATI RADEON 7500 64MB DDR AGP4X 2D/3D OEM
That one is about 65$ US

SOLTEK GEFORCE4 MX420 64BIT 64MB SDR W/ TV OUT
About 60$ US

SOLTEK GEFORCE2 MX400 64BIT 64MB SDR
About 40$ US

Also, what brand do I want, Visiontek seems to have a large part of the market... is Soltek good or?? The cheapest GeForce 3 TI200 I found here was 215$ Cdn which is a bit expensive.
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Old 07-07-02, 05:14 PM   #6
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feneant.. scratch any mx card off your list.. definite waste of money
for cheap 64 mb geforce2 gts (57$)
midrange geforce3 ti 200 (82$)
you can pay 128$ for the geforce3 ti500.. but the ti200 can easily be overclocked up to the performance of a 500
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Old 07-07-02, 07:34 PM   #7
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dude, gf4ti4200 64mb is only 150, get it
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Old 07-07-02, 07:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
you can pay 128$ for the geforce3 ti500.. but the ti200 can easily be overclocked up to the performance of a 500
So a ti500 is not overclockable?
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Old 07-07-02, 08:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by agent2099


So a ti500 is not overclockable?
i dont have alot of experience with these
but my understanding is that they both are using basically the same chip and that the 200 is underclocked.. making it very easy to overclock up

and the 500 wasnt under the limit that he set.. while the 200 was well below his price range
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Old 07-08-02, 10:08 AM   #10
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Quote:
So a ti500 is not overclockable?
Every card in theory is overclockable. I personally have never oc'ed a vid card, but I have read about people who have successfully done so - on the 500's, as well as the 200's. If you have never done this before, I would recommend extreme caution - definitely research the procedure before attempting it.
Quote:
and the 500 wasnt under the limit that he set.. while the 200 was well below his price range
twikoff, if you are referring to the Ti500 I referred him to, it was selling for $128 - $3 over his budget. Considering the performance gain over a Ti200 for $83, I would have to say sgoing $3 over budget would be of little concern in regards to the smooth frame rates he would get from the faster card.

Either way, GF4's are wonderful boards to have, but their potential will not be tapped with current (and forseeable future games). Couple that with their current prices, they make a GF3 look much more attractive. Based on his budget, a GF3 non MX board would be the best way to go - especially for FPS gaming. (IMO, of course).
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Old 07-08-02, 02:18 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by SpacemanSpiff
dude, gf4ti4200 64mb is only 150, get it

I just got the Gainward GeForce 4 Ti 4200 and man does it rock.

I put it in my new system (p4 1.6a o/c to 2.32ghz w/ 512mb of pc2700 DDR). Very, very nice. It benchmarked at 10197 on the 3dBenchmark2001SE.

Paid $147.50 shipped Fed-Ex.
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Old 07-08-02, 02:46 PM   #12
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Aren't the new Nvidia cards coming out at the end of the summer? You might want to hold off for a bit and see what happens.
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Old 07-08-02, 03:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by e_hartnett
Aren't the new Nvidia cards coming out at the end of the summer? You might want to hold off for a bit and see what happens.
This is a little off-topic, but the forthcoming/ rumored nVidia boards are actually behind schedule which means that nVidia will not hit their hallowed 6-month product refresh cycle date. It's been said that the new boards may not be ready or on the market until next year. (This is all unconfirmed though, so take it with a grain of salt )

Back on topic, I would go for the Radeon 8500 or a cheap GF3 card for the best bang for your buck right now.


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Old 07-08-02, 04:23 PM   #14
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Ok, I bought (for about 100$ US shipped) an OEM ATI Radeon LE/LE 8500... it's incidently not made by ATI (big debate on that), it's a 3rd party card running at 230/230 but it can be flashed to the retail 275/275 with no pencil trick and whatever else, ram is either 3.3ns or 3.6 depending on batch... with the pencil trick, people have had it to 305/315 but I don't intend to overclock, I'll probably even leave it at 230/230 for now and bring it to 275 or overclock when I start noticeing a lack of performance.

Yes... I am an ATI stock owner and dislike Nvidia just for the fact that they own the bloody market.
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Old 07-08-02, 05:15 PM   #15
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The video card may not be made by ATI but the chip on the card should be made by ATI if the card says that it's an ATI Radeon LE/LE 8500. That's how most video cards are sold these days, with a third party making the card and ATI or Nvidia providing the chip.
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Old 07-08-02, 06:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Yes... I am an ATI stock owner and dislike Nvidia just for the fact that they own the bloody market.
I own stock in both companies, and neither are doing all that well these days
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Old 07-08-02, 07:22 PM   #17
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The 8500 LE is one of the cards in the sweet spot right now. It offers excellent performance on today's games and should handle new games for quite some time. The drivers are fairly mature by now and as long as ATi doesn't revert to their pre-Radeon days of prematurely dropping driver support for older products, the card should enjoy a long life.

The question of whether to buy a card made by ATi or by a 3rd party is debatable. My main concern with the no-name 3rd parties is their video output quality. My experience with some no-name nVidia cards have shown that these cards can be very inferior in their video filters. Many reports about the first batch of 3rd parties using ATi chips indicates that they suffer from this as well. One of the pluses that ATi had over the years was that like Matrox, they manufactured their own video cards and had fairly high standards for their filter designs. The no-name 3rd parties tend to compete on price and as such they almost always skimp in this area.

As for nVidia's next-gen NV30 part, they taped out around the time of Computex (which was just after E3, which is why it wasn't ready to be used for the Doom3 demo). At this point, it's not the design of the chip that'll be the problem, since they should have plenty of time to finalize the design for a year-end release. The real question mark is whether TSMC will have their .13 micron process ready by that time.

ATi's next-gen part, which they're announcing any day now, is going to initially use a .15 micron process. Given that this chip is likely to have about double the transistor count of an Athlon or P4, it's going to draw a lot of power, which is why its rumored to use an external power connector like the last 3dfx cards. Eventually, they'll have to move to a .13 micron process as well, but right now ATi's main objective is to beat nVidia to market.
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