TechSpot compares today's top mainstream graphics products in single-card and multi-card (SLI & Crossfire) modes.

Last week Nvidia launched their first GeForce 9 series product and surprisingly it was not a $500+ high performance part. Instead, they unveiled the GeForce 9600 GT which is currently priced at $180 and already available in large quantities.

AMD/ATI were quick to cut prices across the mainstream Radeon HD 3800 series immediately after the GeForce 9600 release, and instead of going head to head with the HD 3850, the GeForce 9600 GT will have to meet with the more capable Radeon HD 3870. This card is now being sold in the $190 price range, which is a great value considering it was considerably more expensive just a month ago.

The great debate right now is which of these two graphics cards, the new GeForce 9600 GT or the Radeon HD 3870, is faster and represents the best value for gamers. We have put both products to the test in both single card and multi-GPU mode (SLI and Crossfire) to determine which product is king in the sub-$200 graphics market.

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