URGENT - Need help with graphics card

By KaliNtheReD ยท 9 replies
Dec 7, 2005
  1. Need help with graphics card

    Alright, right now, I have a craptacular GeForce FX5200 in my system. I'm looking for a new card that's preferable no higher than $175 USD and AGP.

    I was looking at some bargain 9800 Pro's. Would that offer a major performance increase, or should I look at other cards?

    IMO, nVidia makes some damn sweet graphics cards but I'm in dire need of higher framerates, so I don't care what company makes it as long as it works. :dead:

    Any help greatly appreciated. :)
  2. steezasu

    steezasu TS Rookie


    I'm not a hardware expert, but I learned a little bit of what to look for when I built my own system recently. The major thing I learned about graphics cards is that the onboard memory isn't necessarily that important (I got the FX5200 too, because it had 256mb, wasn't THAT great). When shopping on newegg.com it showed specs of video cards such as core clock, memory clock, and memory RAMDAC. When I saw the difference in those it was easy to see why there were a lot of 128mb cards that were more expensive than 256mb cards. The one I would probably recommend to you would be the NVIDIA 6600GT card.

    Core Clock: 500mhz
    Memory Clock: 900mhz ($149) and 100mhz ($182)
    RAMDAC: 400mhz

    You can find the ones I'm looking through here:

    Hopefully it will be a clickable link.

    However I'll make one more suggestion, upgrade to a mobo with PCIE on it, from what I understand it's faster than AGP and will eventually replace it as the graphics standard.

    Good luck,

  3. KaliNtheReD

    KaliNtheReD TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Two things:

    I was looking at 6600GT's and 6800GT's and my PSU doesn't have enough power to handle them.

    Secondly, I know about PCI-e and stuff, but I don't want to go through the hassle/cost of upgrading my mobo. If I ever wind up getting a mobo with PCI-e, it would be with a new computer purchase.
  4. pizzada

    pizzada TS Booster Posts: 72

    Well, when I bought my system about 8 months ago, I originally got a 9600 Pro, which ended up being mis-advertised at NewEgg....they (RMA'd it, though).

    So, it was not fast enough. Then I researched, ans researched...and researched...etc....you get the point, and compared the 9800 Pro with the 6600GT, at just about every site that came up from Google/Yahoo/AltaVista incl. TomsHardware, etc....and they showed the 6600GT running better pretty much across the board, than the 9800 Pro.

    I ended up getting the 6600GT, and it works great @ 1152x854. (My PSU is Athlon64 3000+)

    If you have 'only' $175 to spend, then you might consider that NewEgg is now selling some 6600GT AGP models for less than $150, and they also have a nice FSP (Fortron) for $35.... http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817104931
    which is 350W, with 15Amp on the 12+volt rail, which is plenty.

    Just something to consider.
  5. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,406

    Sounds like the 6600GT is the card for you. It is a better card than the 9800pro. Not only in performance gains, but also in the technology it uses. It supports pixel shader 3.0 (which is the latest) for one. In other words, it'll allow you to see what the programmers INTENDED you to see. Get a 9800pro and it has to turn off the shading. This is just one example of why the 6600GT is a better card.

    What is your power supply anyways?

    Here is a beauty of a deal for a 400w. $40 for a total of 30amps on the dual 12v rails.
  6. KaliNtheReD

    KaliNtheReD TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have a generic 250W PSU. The only thing that's stopping me from buying a new PSU is that I'm not entirely sure it will fit in my case ...
  7. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,406

    What form factor is your case? ATX? If your current PSU is ATX then a new ATX should slide in there ever so sweetly. Like butter.
  8. KaliNtheReD

    KaliNtheReD TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Lmao, yes, I believe it is ATX.
  9. gary_hendricks

    gary_hendricks TS Rookie Posts: 107

    Hi KaliNtheReD,

    If you don't want to upgrade your motherboard to PCI Express, then you can stick with a good AGP card. One of the best value AGP cards out there would be the NVIDIA 6600GT series.

    If you consider what is important in graphics cards, you will know that
    core clock, RAM clock, memory bandwidth and pixel pipeline are determining factors.

    A quick comparison (from various net sources) does in fact show that the Geforce 6600GT has a faster core clock and RAM clock than the competing Geforce 6800 Non-Ultra series and the Radeon 9800XT series. Memory bandwidth and pixel pipelines are lower in the Geforce 6600GT than the Geforce 6800 Non-Ultra.

    Price wise, the Geforce 6600GT is cheaper than the Geforce 6800 Non-Ultra series and the Radeon 9800XT. The Radeon 9800XT is the most expensive.

    What does this mean? Well, if you like to play 3D games, you may want to pay slightly more for the Geforce 6800 Non-Ultra series of cards. Although the 6600GT AGP has a faster core and RAM clock, the lower memory bandwidth and pixel pipelines means that it will slow down (compared to the other two) when used with high resolution 3D games, with maximum detail turned on.

    On the whole, the Geforce 6600GT series of cards would cater to the mid range videocard buyer.

    Although the 6800 will definitely provide slightly better performance, the 6600GT is quite a powerful card for its price range. If you own one of those older AGP cards, like the MX or 5200 series - the 6600 GT is definitely a worthy consideration.

    What's more, the 6600GT is one great overclocker of a card. You can clock the default 500/900MHz to about 562/1030MHz without much problems.

    In your case, given that you don't want to upgrade to PCI Express yet, and are looking to upgrade from that 'craptacular GeForce FX5200' :) - I'd say go for that 6600GT. Brand wise, I think the Gigabyte GeForce 6600GT or the XFX GeForce 6600GT are both good buys. You'll do well to consider those 2 models.

    Hope this helps!
  10. KaliNtheReD

    KaliNtheReD TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well, that was a long read, but I appreciate you taking your time to write that. I will take heed of your advice and research both cards, however, I may wind up sticking with a 6800GT.
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