I know nothing about video cards, appreciate some suggestions

By macx ยท 11 replies
Oct 1, 2005
  1. Building a new system, ASUS PC4800-E Deluxe board,
    2.8 P4, 1g RAM, a couple of big SATA drives.

    Main thing I want is for downloading & recording home
    video to DVD, maybe a TV tuner later, and maybe
    dual monitors at some point.

    The board has 8X video.

    I don't game at all.

    I've tried to read up on these things, but all I get is
    confused on the many choices.

    While I'm at it, what's a decent sound card for
    just a decent set of speakers, nothing exotic or
    hi powered.

    Thanks for any suggestions!
    Trying to stay at a reasonable
    budget level.

    (edit) Just saw an Asus Radeon 9800 Pro 256mb DDR
    AGP 8X, for DVI, Dual VGA, VIVO for a reasonable price.
    Any good for what I want?
  2. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    The board should have integrated sound that is ok, if you're not really picky. If you just want a basic card, a soundblaster live 7.1 24bit, or an audigy 2 value might fit the bill.

    A 9800pro would be a good card, probably more power than you'd need if you won't be gaming.
    You probably could get by with a really cheap card like this if you want to save some money.
  3. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright TS Rookie Posts: 21

    You have done the right thing by first determining your intended use for this card - you need to establish a budget.

    BTW - That mobo supports Dual-Channel - I hope your RAM is 2 X 512 - with dual channel enabled, you will get better performance with 2 X 512 than you will with 1 X 1G.

    I suggest you check out ATI All-In-Wonder boards - I have been using them for several years and they work great (ATI make the Radeon GPUs) - plus they already support dual monitor and have a built in TV Tuner.

    I suggest you enter the make and model number in Google, along with the word 'review' and you should get a lot of hits.
  4. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    As with everything else I get into that I don't know much about,
    I've been doing some reading & research. (But why are there
    so many things like that!? :confused:

    Anyway - I went back & re-reviewed info on the board on the Asus site.
    You're right about the board's sound system, it looks like it'll be fine for
    my needs.

    On the video end of things, I'm going thru this whole exercise & expense
    so I can do home video to DVD. (Started out with a used video cam,
    then found out my existing setup isn't adequate to render video w/Nero -
    the old story of one minor thing leading to a new this and new that and
    lots bigger outlay than originally intended.) While I don't want to spend several hundred $, I also don't want the abilities of the system wasted or
    choked by a card that won't do video pretty well. It looks like I may
    be able to get that Radeon 9800 card for about $100 or + a little, which
    now sounds like a pretty decent deal.

    Yes, fortunately, I did find 2 x 512 Samsung RAM, so should be fairly
    well off there. I looked for that specific setup after reading about the
    board and finding out about the advantages of dual channel. That plus
    an 800FSB board & 2.8 processor should do a pretty decent job.

    If that deal falls thru, I'll certainly look into your suggestion.

    Thanks so much for helping further my education!! :giddy:
  5. Sharkfood

    Sharkfood TS Guru Posts: 1,019

    That's a very nice system. I have one very similar here and also do video transfers with it.

    You do know you will need some sort of capture card or device if you wish to transfer home video to DVD, right?

    The previous poster recommend the AIW Radeon cards, but I'll have to strongly disagree. ATI's Multimedia drivers and WDM drivers are some of the worst you can find. Also, they have hair-trigger Macrovision built-into the drivers, so even camcorder or palmcorder videosignals trip the macrovision code and therefore make video transfers impossible. Even if your tape signal has no macrovision code, they do this and it's very, very frustrating. They also recently added their insanely sensitive (and inaccurate) macrovision code to display/preview, so not only can't you record, but you can't even display or preview.

    That being said, a Dazzle or other 3rd party capture device would probably be best. If you already have one (USB or PCI), it should work in the new system great. I *DO* recommend ATI videocards, just not their multimedia cards, tuner cards or VIVO cards. They make some of the best 3d/2d hardware around, so that 9800 Pro is a great choice.
  6. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    Thanks for the additional info!

    After reading about those things, and what little
    I still know, I thought that sounded like a pretty
    good one.

    Now I've got to learn a little more about what
    "multimedia, tuner and VIVO" cards are and what
    they do, and how they're different from a "capture

    This 9800 is an ASUS mfg'd card.

    How are the ASUS TV cards?

    From what I've read lately, ASUS seems
    at least in general to be good quality?

  7. crazdude

    crazdude TS Rookie Posts: 183

    see, even if he doesnt game, a gaming card is alwats a good thing to have, besides who says they are only for gaming? you can many more things that need good graphics cards.
  8. Sharkfood

    Sharkfood TS Guru Posts: 1,019

    ASUS does make great hardware.. their videocards are no exception.

    You'll still be hooked to ATI WDM drivers- the Asus WDM's are just the ones provided by ATI as it has the same capture chip in the VIVO's. It's worth trying, but if you get scrambled captures or a big white box in the middle- you'll know you have tripped the hair-trigger macrovision code.

    I'd say keep on track with your plan.. and try your video xfers. If you have problems with the macrovision/ATI drivers, you can pick-up a cheap USB Dazzle style capture board. The VIVO component of that 9800 Pro is basically "free" anyways since the Asus VIVO boards are comparably priced with flat 9800 Pro's elsewhere. :) It's good for playing console games though on your desktop, so I'm sure you'll get some use out of it.
  9. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright TS Rookie Posts: 21

    Because, if you are like me, the more I learn, the more I realize I don't know! Admitting your ignorance, however, demonstrates your wisdom.
  10. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    How about NVIDIA GeForce?

    I don't want to spend $100+ and then have the possibility
    of it not working for video transfer.

    How about one of the NVIDIA cards?

    Are any of them capable of supporting dual monitors?

    I've read a little about the 6200, 6600 and 6800 GeForce
    cards - all 256mb.

    Thanks for your continued patience & input!
  11. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    HOW ABOUT an ASUS N6600GT?

    Has the NVIDIA 6600, 256mb, 128mb GDDR3.

    Wouldn't that be a pretty good card, and be sure
    to work with video transfer - no "maybe"?

    Is around $160 a decent price?

    Thanks - again!
  12. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    Took the plunge!

    Was in a "buy it or lose it" situation, so bought it.

    I had looked up the online discount prices and found
    that $160 was pretty good - most online discounters
    I found in a quick search were lots closer to $200.
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