TechSpot

Which card should I buy?

By peter2
May 20, 2008
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Hello all,


    I have an AMD Athlon 54 X2 +4200 with a M2A-VM HDMI motherboard, and 2 GB DDR2 of RAM . The on-board video is crap, so after lurking around, I found some GeForce or ATi's to buy.

    I want to be able to play the "last" games, what do you recommend ?

    P.S: I don't want to spend $ 300 on the video.
  2. Cinders

    Cinders TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,313   +12

  3. _FAKE_

    _FAKE_ TS Rookie Posts: 162

    Wait till next month mate and get HD4850 or HD4870. Both will be faster than 9800GTX and HD4850 is going to be around 8800GT price.
  4. nickc

    nickc TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,624

    _FAKE_, u do realize lots of us hate ATI cards because their drivers are so bad among other things.
  5. _FAKE_

    _FAKE_ TS Rookie Posts: 162

    Believe it or not their drivers are more stable than nVidia drivers and I know cause I own both ATI and nVidia cards. I'm not siding with ATI but saying their drivers are bad is just wrong. Also their latest drivers offer up to 10-50% performance boost in a few games.

    Ever wondered why nVidia is constantly bringing out drivers for their cards? ever wondered why they are always beta and not WHQL certified? its because their drivers suck and they are always having to fix bugs and errors. ATI drivers are a lot better.

    As for performance, well nVidia owns that sector easily and will likely own that sector in the next gen cards but ATI will beat them by quite a margin in price and will have a better bang for buck. Take for instance the HD4850, its meant to be faster than 9800GTX (and judging by specs it should be) whilst being sold at around $190-$250 which puts it squarely in the price range of the 8800GT. nVidia won't stand a chance against this without losing money on their side.

    Simple fact is ATI have found a way to make high performance cards cheaper. nVidia simply improved on their current cards but at a higher price.

    I for one am aiming to buy a GTX280 because I want the best card there is, but the HD4870 will likely be half the price or even cheaper and definitely won't be half as powerful.

    I'll be waiting for benchmarks before making a decision however. If the GTX 280 is in my price range and offers a fair decent performance gain over HD4870 I'll get it even though it won't be better bang for buck. But if HD4870 proves to be a very solid performer in most/all games I'll get that instead. The HD4870 will have far lower power consumption at idle (something like 5-10W) which is a huge bonus considering I leave my PC on 24/7. As for load, I wouldn't know, but the GDDR5 memory is supposed to use less power than GDDR3 which nVidia will be using whilst having almost twice as high clock speeds.
  6. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,286   +24

    A very ignorant statement. FYI, ATI's Vista drivers always were much better than NVIDIA's drivers for the same OS. You should be able to find plenty of complaints about NVIDIA's drivers causing heaps of trouble on Vista.

    It takes time to fix bugs, so I wouldn't put all the blame on NVIDIA. Also, they always recommend installing WHQL drivers, and clearly state on their site that installing beta drivers is something you should do at your own risk.

    As for the OP, the XFX 8600GT is available for under $50 at Newegg with a rebate. It provides the best bang for your buck IMO.
  7. _FAKE_

    _FAKE_ TS Rookie Posts: 162

    I don't blame nVidia for their drivers (well atleast I don't put the full blame on them) and I do know that nVidia recommends their WHQL drivers over their beta. But honestly, most beta's are better than their WHQL drivers so people prefer to use them.

    As for it takes time to fix bugs, well nVidia have had 4 years to fix one bug thats bugged me and I can't remember the name but its a driver related bug on the nVidia card that usually stops responding during games. It usually happens when the GPU's are overclocked but even at stock speeds a large variety of people still experience that driver stop responding.
  8. peter2

    peter2 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    So, taking into consideration my actual PC, which should I buy:

    8800GT, 8800GS, 8600GGT or 8600GS ??
  9. _FAKE_

    _FAKE_ TS Rookie Posts: 162

    8800GT mate. But you will be better off waiting till next month and pick up a HD4850. But its your money. The 8800GT is a really good card so if you need one now than get it.
  10. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,286   +24

    First make sure you have a PSU capable enough of handling those cards. Then get whatever you want. I'd recommend the 9600GT, since it provides performance about equal to the 8800GT, for a lower price.
  11. _FAKE_

    _FAKE_ TS Rookie Posts: 162

    Actually the 9600GT proved performance about equal to a HD3870 or about 10-15% slower than 8800GT. 9600GT also consumes just as much power as the 8800GT at load. The only thing the 9600GT has over the 8800GT is lower power consumption while idling and lower price. But the 8800GT is coming down in price all the time so he's better off going with the 8800GT.
     
  12. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,286   +24

    IMO, unless you have a bionic eye, a 10-15% difference in performance is hardly noticeable. 60FPS vs 50FPS still looks almost the same to me. The 8800GT however is a better choice for high-resolution gaming and Crysis, if you play that a lot.
  13. _FAKE_

    _FAKE_ TS Rookie Posts: 162

    Depends on how well the coding is done for the games. In highly optimized games the difference between 50fps and 60fps is mute. Games that take good use of motion blur like Crysis is even better cause you can play at 25fps and it feels like 30+fps.

    But in games that aren't codes good there can be a big difference between 50fps and 60fps.

    The 8800GT has a higher fps count and a higher low fps count over the 9600GT so your less likely to experience dips in fps with the 8800GT.

    But I guess its up to the OP.
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.


Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...


Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.