Does anyone realise how good the Saphire 9100 is?

By yukka · 7 replies
Jun 2, 2003
  1. this card cost me £74, has 128mb of memory, runs Unreal 2003 at full detail at 1600 rez, has beautiful picture quality, only cost £74, runs Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory at 1152 with all details on maximum without a drop in fps, plays dvds like a dream, retails for 74 english pounds, and wont have to be upgraded for about 2 years as far as i can see at the moment.

    its going to be a long time before i have to turn it to 800*600 to get a decent framerate, the bandwidth is so good and the memory is so expansive. i used a geforce 2mx before and this card just blows it away, and costs even less.

    just in case you want a reference, Geforce 4Ti4200 cost £130, Radion 9700pro cost £290, the newer ones cost even more. and this one cost just £74 quid!!!

    there is no better budget card. its the nuts. someone tell someone about it, cos its killing me to keep it to myself :)
  2. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,730   +379

    I built a PC for someone with a Radeom 9000 Pro 64mb card and was very impressed with it for £70. That was a while back now though. Personally I would get a 9500Pro 128mb as the more powerful shaders will help with the eye candy in DoomIII and Half Life2. Sure you won't need to upgrade the card for a while, but you might have to drop visual detail a little sooner than you would think.
  3. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 861   +67

    the 9500 costs £150 in UK atm. I know it can be hacked as my friend has done it, he got lucky with the memory quality on his card and now it runs as fast as a 9700. that is twice the cost of mine tho, and 76 pounds is so low for a next-gen card (well, geforce 3/radion 8500 gen). i bought a 8mb 3dfx for £160 when they first came out, then a voodoo2 for £120 (after a few months of the voodoo2 being out), then a voodoo3 for £90 before a geforce 2mx for £80.

    Cant wait to get my next card for less than £60 :)
  4. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,730   +379

    I spent the best part of £300 on the GF3 when it first came out. Got my value for money out of it before I sold it on though. I think the 9000 (basically 8500 updated slightly) cards are great midrange cards, although depending on the pricing a GF4 Ti4200 8XAgp might be better (~£100). With this clocked at Ti4600 speeds it will beat a 9000 card for sheer fps. But I must say I am very pleased with ATI image quality (got a good deal off a friend on 9700 Pro (£170 + GF3), and would take them over Nvidia cards. Thats just my preference though.

    The 9500 non pro cards could be softmodded to 9700 but that was only with the first batches of 9500s which were produced on the 9700 PCB. The later ones couldn't be changed to use the 256bit bus but still are usually a little quicker than the newer 9600 cards...

    To sum up what I'm saying... I agree that the 9000 series cards are great performance for the money, but I have a feeling that DoomIII and the following newer DirectX8 games will have these cards starting to struggle. I mean benchmarks with DoomIII on a pretty high end PC have the 9700 Pro doing about 40fps :eek:
  5. Shaft

    Shaft TS Rookie Posts: 79

    I just put a Sapphire 9100 in my old computer when I built the new one. It's not quite as fast as my ti4400, but it gets the job done.
  6. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,276   +461

    Won't need to upgrade it for 2 years if you don't plan on playing any Doom III or something newer maybe. If you're a die-hard gamer I doubt a 9100 would last you very much longer. I have a Ti4400 that I'm no longer happy with (not as fast as I'd like for the games I play) but I'm just holding out for the 5900 Ultra.

  7. Elcarion

    Elcarion TechSpot Paladin Posts: 169

    The 9100 is an "update" of the 8500 with a newer BIOS and slower RAM than a stock 8500. Some 9100s have the 8500 RAM speed; 8500LE is a budget 8500, not to be confused. I've been very happy with my 9100 purchased for around $85 3 or 4 months ago. I ran neck and neck with a buddy's 4200 o/ced at a LAN party recently. It will hold me over until HL2 or D3 come out.
    I agree with Arris that ATI has great image quality. Enough for me to say 5900 Ultra? bah!
  8. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 861   +67

    two years is a bit too long, ill probably upgrade within a year. i can get alot of money back on the 9100 tho, its so cheap and easily sellable.
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