what graphics card to buy?

Discussion in 'AMD Graphics Cards' started by talkshowhost, Jan 1, 2006.

  1. talkshowhost

    talkshowhost New Member

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    Hi guys,

    First off Happy New Year! and best wishes to everyone for 2006!

    I have some cash burning a hole in my pocket and have the upgrade twitch :)

    At the moment my computer specs are as below in my sig but lately the newest games like F.E.A.R and others have started to struggle a bit so i think it about time for an upgrade.

    I just not sure what to buy. I definitley want a new graphics card but which one...i thought about buying a new motherboard as well and going along the PCI-e route but then this would require a new processor, fan, and whatever else would then be required. So i thought probably the best bet would be to fork out a lot on a new card (X800 or something) and get some new RAM as the 1GB i have at the moment is just some rubbish non branded stuff so could upgrade to maybe 1GB 3200 kingston or OCZ stuff which would do nicely.

    I don't really have a budget in mind maybe £300 or i could stretch further. what do you guys think? what would give me the best performance increase. the PCI-e route or sticking with the mainboard i have? and any suggestions on what i should buy.

    Many thanks in advance for any help.

    cheers.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2006
  2. coldfrontt

    coldfrontt New Member

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    Going the PCI-E route should be your priority as there are no plans to make a X1000 series card in AGP. You can get up to X850 in AGP, which is still a hell of an upgrade from the 9600. If you can't do all of it at once, Asrock makes a decent board which uses both AGP and PCI-e, which allows you to take your time upgrading the vid.
     
  3. talkshowhost

    talkshowhost New Member

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    oops did mean to say X800 or X850 in my original post. have edited now!

    that was kinda the thinking along the RAM and graphics card upgrade only as if i go PCI-e i practically have to build a whole new comp.
     
  4. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -2 Great-grandsons

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    Depending on your actual budget, the X800 series is a fine upgrade. I went from 9600 Pro 128 MB to X800XL 256 MB and I'm playing everything I can get my hands on.

    But, if you can swing the move toward PCI-e, I think that would be my advice. AGP is on the way out. I'll be looking to do this kind of move sometime this Spring.

    However, if you really can't do that right now, are you sure your motherboard can use PC3200? If so, a good memory upgrade and an X800 series card would do some wonders for your system.
     
  5. H3X4D3C1M4L

    H3X4D3C1M4L New Member

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    I say just a graphics card upgrade would do it... I mean going from a 4 pipe 128 bit memory bus 9600XT to a full 16 pipe 256 bit memory bus card would be a total black and white difference.

    TBH I doubt the RAM would do THAT much for you unless you're overclocking, you have tons of money and want to spend it, or your current RAM makes your system unstable. You could get away with some Value series PC3200.

    Of course, PCI-E will be the best performance but for now theres still no really pressing need if you're happy with a 9600XT at this stage and are only now finding it long in the tooth.
     
  6. petri1

    petri1 New Member

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    so when there is a thread so

    i have an PowerColor X800 PCI-E Bravoedition 256mb ram 1.6ns 391/351 12pipes

    so i can´t afford a X1800series card nor the top X850XT/PE

    so i was thinking X1600XT asus has a nice one i think

    but is this the card and the performance gain i need

    since i can´t play COD2 properly witthis card so does the X1600XT do good in COD2???

    so what card shall i look for?
     
  7. talkshowhost

    talkshowhost New Member

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    thanks for all the advice.

    i think i have now decided to stick with the AGP which should last fine for the next year ot two then i can make the step up to whatever new generation is out then.

    Now to decide which card to get so what manufacturer does anyone suggest. i can get a Powercolor X850XT PE 256MB for under £250. I definitely want at least an X800XT and am looking at card from either sapphire, connect 3D or HIS or the powercoler one above. Does anyone have any preferences for either of the above? I would much appreciate anybody else's thoughts.

    Also, will upgrading my RAM make a lot of difference. at the moment it is 1GB of 2100 and was thinking of going to 2GB of 3200 (my motherboard does support this) but this would add at leats another £120 on. I haven't had any problems and am guessing will see massive performance increase on just the graphics card anyway.

    Again thanks for the help.

    cheers
     
  8. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -2 Great-grandsons

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    Keep in mind that the X800 XL card already has 16 Pixel Pipelines available without any modding or BIOS changes. This is one thing that makes this card so sweet. So, be aware of how many Pipes are working on whatever card you get.

    As for the RAM: You can do the card now and the RAM when you recover from the cost of the card. BUT, I really do think an upgrade from PC2100 to PC3200 will offer a very decent improvement in performance. AND, if you're going from 1 GB to 2 GB, definitely get the faster RAM.
     
  9. H3X4D3C1M4L

    H3X4D3C1M4L New Member

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    yeah but DDR2 on AMD64 comes soon... :lol:
     
  10. g35x

    g35x Hellhound Pilot

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    eventually ur deffinitly going to need pci-e but if you do want an agp card the best now is the x800xt aiw because i think they've stopped selling the x800xl agp as i dont see them on newegg anymore (your not in the us anyway tho.......)get an x800 if u want an agp card
     
  11. H3X4D3C1M4L

    H3X4D3C1M4L New Member

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    Umm they're selling X850XT's alot.... AGP isn't totally extinct yet
     
  12. g35x

    g35x Hellhound Pilot

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    yeah didnt say it was totally gone im just saying they're getting a bit harder to find......
     
  13. H3X4D3C1M4L

    H3X4D3C1M4L New Member

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    Not really... I find PCI-E and AGP equally easy to acquire. But then that's locally.... on online only stores they're all pushing PCI-E
     
  14. g35x

    g35x Hellhound Pilot

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    yeah thats what i was talking about (i did write about newegg......)im sure the local bestbuy still has some agp x800xls lol
     
  15. talkshowhost

    talkshowhost New Member

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    thanks for all the advice

    I've decided and think instead of forking out £250 on AGP that PCI-e is the way forward and decided my £300 budget is now about to be blown out the water!

    Here's what im thinking so far:
    Processor
    AMD Opteron UP 146 2.0Ghz

    Motherboard
    DFI LanParty UT NF4 Ultra-D or Asus A8N-E what does anyone recommend. I had decided on the DFI but then i really have no interest in DXG so have kinda swayed towards the Asus.

    Graphics Card
    PowerColor ATI Radeon X850 XT 256MB or i have thought about a X1800 XL if i really want to start shelling out some cash. Do you think it is worth it for SM 3.0 support? This will be the last upgrade i do in a while.

    RAM
    Thought i might as well upgrade the RAM whilst i'm at it! so was considering the GeIL 2GB (2x1GB) PC3200 Value Dual channel kitbut is it worth it spending more for better quality RAM.

    Also i won't have any problems with my current case as with all the connectors and what not ( it's an older Lian li case). And should i go for a bigger PSU or is 485W enough? and i still need a CPU cooler on top of that but that shouldn't be such a hard decison.

    Sorry for all the questions i really appreciate all the advice.

    Thanks
     
  16. H3X4D3C1M4L

    H3X4D3C1M4L New Member

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    485W is good.

    If you don't plan on upgrading for at least 2 years go X1800XL.

    DFI boards are good.

    GeIL is a good brand buy something better only if you plan on doing some OC'ing (with an Opteron + DFI I would)
     
  17. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -2 Great-grandsons

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    I'll be very happy to echo what ^ said. :)
     
  18. g35x

    g35x Hellhound Pilot

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    good choice:)
     

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