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Best 2d video card??

Old 01-20-01, 03:57 AM
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I am looking to get the best 2d video card that is also a good gaming card for under $170. 32MBDDR prefered and tv out. I was leaning toward Leadtek Geforce2 GTS 32MB DDR w/ tv out $180. Any suggestions?
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Old 01-20-01, 08:36 AM
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The best card depends on what you plan to use it for. For example, if you want to view dvd's on the t.v. then the ati radeon has hardware assisted decoding.

The Geforce cards can have good 2d quality, but be careful which one you get. Diffrent manuf. tend to have diffrent levels of 2d visual quality. Try to find an online review before you pick a model.

The Ati Radeon probably has better visual quality overall, and the game performance is really close to the Geforce 2 cards. I'm not sure about the price of one with t.v. out, but you could always get an all-in-wonder which would add all sorts of extra functions.

Matrox is often called the "king of 2d", but as far as gaming goes they are no where near the two previous cards (though fast enough for most games). In your price range you can get a G450 which has dualhead (two monitors at once) and a connector for t.v. out. I own a G400 dual head and am very happy with it.

If you only want 1024x768 at 32bit color (for 2d), then just about any card will do. If you want to use 1280+ resolutions, then you would probably be better off with the ati or matrox.

Search for reviews of the cards you are looking at on the web. Most video cards have been reviewed several times by diffrent websites.
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Old 01-20-01, 12:07 PM
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Matrox G400 Max 32megs DualHead, that is what 2D should look like. I use one and I would never trade it, I use it with 2 monitors and it is crystal clear. The problem is that it is far from being a FAST 3D card for games (it does have great features like EBM). But I still play all the 3D games I want (simply not all the options turned on)

The nVidia GeForce2 lines have the fastest 3D I have seen. And it looks very good. The only problem is that the 2D is poor.

The ATI Radeon have an average 2D and an average 3D. The TV output is far from being as clear as the Matrox DVDMax feature. The tech support is the worst I have ever seen, the drivers are not updated enough (as soon as the Radeon 2 will be released, ATI will not make new drivers for the Radeon 1. They even stop the development of drivers for Win2k for their previous card, I think it is the Rage Fury!!! Matrox is STILL making new drivers for the G200 cards...)
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Old 01-20-01, 01:49 PM
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My main objective is to get the best 2d card to output to tv that also is not bad with 3d. I see matrox max seems to be the best 2d but bad 3d and ati is good on both. the only radeon cards with tv out is the 64MB and the allinwonder, is this true? So how bad is the 3d on the matrox? I am looking to get the best 2d card that is decent on 3d for about $170 and use it to output to tv.
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Old 01-21-01, 09:51 AM
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My "plain" g400 32meg card can play ANY game on the market right now. I sometimes have to keep the res. at 800x600 and/or turn down some graphics options. As a casual gamer I have no urge to upgrade my vid. card. Also remember that a faster processor can be more effective then a faster vid. card in some games (real time strategy, racing/flight games).

The Max version is a little faster (my g400 will overclock to max levels but I don't really need the extra oomph).

The ATI Radeon is a little more future proof, the 3d features will easily last two more years. It is currently one of the fastest vid. cards available, and the visual quality isn't too far away from matrox (unless you use high res. 2d, you may not notice a diff.)

Check out www.anandtech.com for reviews on video cards. Search through their video card reviews for comparisons of diffrent video cards (you may have to search for the G400 Max comparisons).
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Old 01-21-01, 11:28 PM
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One last thing is there any card on the market that will play back dvd's on my tv like my dvd player ie is there any vid card that looks as good as a dvd player. Also will any card allow me to play games and be comparable to my dreamcast. I am trying to cut back on the hardware I have.
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Old 01-22-01, 02:22 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by TJ22:
One last thing is there any card on the market that will play back dvd's on my tv like my dvd player ie is there any vid card that looks as good as a dvd player. Also will any card allow me to play games and be comparable to my dreamcast. I am trying to cut back on the hardware I have.



The Elsa Gladiac GeForce2 GTS will play on a TV better than a DVD player. However you may need to use component I/O to see the difference and probably would not notice a difference on less than a high-res RPTV. I'm not sure how good the S-Video out is, I'm experimenting with it now.
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Old 01-22-01, 08:40 AM
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There are tons of online video card reviews, and the reviewers would have seen more cards than the majority of us. If a card has a t.v. out, it will be mentioned/reviewed with the card.

For output to the t.v., most if not all cards will have output equal to stand alone dvd players. Of course as with dvd players, video quality differs among video cards. Unless you have a really expensive progresive scan t.v. and dvd player, the picture quality of a computer monitor is great if you don't mind the "small" picture. If you're sitting a foot or two away from the monitor this is not a big deal.

As for games, on some titles that have been relesed on both the Dreamcast and PC, my g400 can look comparable with better frame rates. Of course I have a fast P3 933, a slower processor would have diffrent results.

If gaming is really important to you, then you should just get an ati radeon. Graphics wise it could easily compete with the ps2 graphics, plus it has the hardware decoding of dvd's (not important if you have a fast cpu).

The Geforce 2 is also a great card, and if you find one with the features you like for a good price get it.
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