PDA

View Full Version : What route to take with upgrade?



JoeCobra281
05-07-2005, 05:29 AM
I currently have a Powercolor 9600 Pro, which isn't the greatest card. I'd like to upgrade, but I'm stuck in a pickle as to how far to upgrade. I'm torn between going with a midrange card like a Sapphire 9800 Pro or Gigabyte 6600 GT, or going all out for a 6800 Ultra or something equivalent. The bottom line is that I'd like to see a noticeable difference when gaming. So will I see a noticeable improvement going to a 9800 Pro or 6600 GT? If so, then I'll go with one of those, because let's face it....~$350-400 is still a lot to blow on a video card, but I'd be willing to spend the dough on a 6800 Ultra if that's what it takes to see a difference. Well, thanks in advance for any help.

Joe

Darthtanion
05-07-2005, 06:30 AM
Yes, you will see a difference by upgrading to either of the two cards you are looking at. The 6600GT will probably be a bit better choice, but you don't make mention of your current system hardware. If it is older, then stick with the 6600GT. If it is newer and can handle the load, go ahead and splurge for the 6800 board. Even if you just get a GT model instead of the Ultra, it will do very well... BUT... That series of video card is wasted if you're running an older computer. Slower systems cannot even come close to making that video card sweat.

JoeCobra281
05-07-2005, 08:41 AM
Oh, sorry. Here's my current setup:

ASUS A7N8X-E Deluxe
Athlon XP 3200+
512 x 2 Dual Channel DDR
Powercolor 9600 Pro

Thanks.

Joe

Darthtanion
05-07-2005, 11:35 AM
Your system isn't too bad off... but I don't think it would make full use of the Ultra. I'd probably go with the 6800GT and enjoy life. I've also heard of some of those boards that can be made into an Ultra so you might want to check into that as well.

matm347
05-10-2005, 03:00 PM
I agree, save some $$ and go with a GT, you can overclock it. Some go over Ultra specs.

Wraith556
05-11-2005, 02:56 PM
Don't overlook the non-GT/Ultra 6800s. They are good performers for the price. But avoid the "Value Editions" as there are only 8 pixel pipelines (compared to 12 for 6800, and 16 for the GT/Ultra versions). If money is tight, the 6600GT is a good option.

cripple
05-11-2005, 05:39 PM
The 6800GT is meant to have the better performance, one of my mates has purchased that card and his computer runs like nothing i have seen before.

Yawgm0th
05-13-2005, 08:58 AM
Don't overlook the non-GT/Ultra 6800s. They are good performers for the price. But avoid the "Value Editions" as there are only 8 pixel pipelines (compared to 12 for 6800, and 16 for the GT/Ultra versions). If money is tight, the 6600GT is a good option.
Exactly. A 6800 non-Ultra non-GT may be a good choice for this particular scenario. To avoid getting a screwed up one, just don't get the Asus. I'd say never go Asus for video cards because of their cards greatly vary from the normal specs of that type of card. They basically mislabel their cards. Any other brand should provide the proper 6800.

matm347
05-13-2005, 09:54 AM
Don't overlook the non-GT/Ultra 6800s. They are good performers for the price. But avoid the "Value Editions" as there are only 8 pixel pipelines (compared to 12 for 6800, and 16 for the GT/Ultra versions). If money is tight, the 6600GT is a good option.
I've heard people flashing their 6800s to GTs and unlocking the extra pipes, not all brands work though.

Wraith556
05-13-2005, 10:04 AM
Yawgm0th, I have the ASUS V9999TD 6800 card. It works fine. I double-checked the specs on the sellers site, and at ASUS as well. The card was benchmarked and compared again the results at Dan's Data. Dan was using an overclocked P4 and a Athlon64 with a 6800 card (Albatron I think). My results were within 30-80 points of Dan's results. Pretty good for a stock-speed Barton XP2800+ (2079 MHz). The 6800VE cards were made by Gainward I think. The seller I bought from has on their site the full specs of the card on the page: clock speeds, pipelines, RAM, etc.

I later checked my results against other sites benchmarks. My results were comparable when the CPUs were taken into consideration (mostly top-end P4s and Athlon64s).

Lesson: Always check the specs on what you are after. A few hours of research can save $$$s and months of grief.

Yawgm0th
05-14-2005, 10:26 AM
Yawgm0th, I have the ASUS V9999TD 6800 card. It works fine. I double-checked the specs on the sellers site, and at ASUS as well. The card was benchmarked and compared again the results at Dan's Data.
I think you've misunderstood me.

Asus cards don't sue the specs they're supposed to. Any Asus card you buy will still use the advertised specs, and should still run just as well as the other Asus cards.

The Asus V9999GT/TD has a memory clock speed 300MHz lower than a normal 6800GT and it's the only 128MB 6800GT. It also costs $100 less than your average 6800GT. They also make a version of the card with the same name that is just a normal 6800GT.

Asus used to vary from the normal specs even more. At one point the Asus 6800 was more expensive and better than the Asus 6800GT, and neither of them shared specs with any other 6800s or 6800GTs.

This is why I don't really like Asus as far as video cards go. What they were doing and to a lesser extent still are was very misleading to consumers, especially less knowledgeable ones.

Wraith556
05-16-2005, 10:32 AM
The card I bought was not sold or advertised as a 6800GT. The specs of the card were the same as the equivalents from Leadtek, Albatron, Gainward, and some other manufacturers. The prices were all within $30 of each other. And the GTs were $250-300 more (good stuff is expensive downunder). I decided to go with a known tier-1 manufacturer. Some friends bought some "unknown" brand video cards before and had big problems caused by shoddy manufacturing. They ended up paying the difference and exchanging them for cards made by major producers.

The model number of the card I bought is V9999TD. It was not promoted as a GT-class product. I knew there was a difference in the clock-speeds, but with real-world usage and the price-performance ratio, I did not think the GTs were worth the extra money, especially with the CPU I am using. The 6800 offered about 80+% performance of the GT/Ultra, for two-thirds of the cost. This ratio holds with the results from Tom's Hardware, Anantech, X-bit labs, etc at normal screen resolutions (1024x768 & 1280x1024). Anything higher and screen refresh rate gives me migraines.

End result, I'm happy with the card. It works fine. Games play well and look great. ASUS do have some issues with model naming and marketing. And their online support absolutely sucks, which is a shame because their products always receive good reviews. The online support issue is why I'm using Gigabyte nForce2pro mainboards instead of ASUS but that is another story.

Moral of the story: Always research the product and know what you are buying before you part with your cash.