sigh... now we are calling a $400 x800 pro a mid-range card...
a near the top of the line ATI AWI only cost $200 not that many years ago. (and a near the top of line system is about $1k at that time)
everyone I know (myself included) would still think $200 for a video card is a lot of money.
(I am using a PCX5900, around $200, will run the demo test on it to see...)
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I'm thinking of buying the game - the only problem is that the game costs 1/3 of what my graphics card costed (1 500 kr):
500 kr which is $74.8 (USD)! (Remember the dollar is record low so it's not that expensive in dollars maybe)
Can I buy online and download it from somewhere?
Specs are 3.4 550 P4 Prescott, 1 GB DDR2, Asus X600 XT PCIe 128 MB, Intel BC925X mobo. Will the graphics card manage? It was the cheapest part of the system...
Whoooa, echo. Do NOT get the x600. It's a waste of money. If you're looking for midrange, the 6600GT should be your only choice, unless you're looking for big-time Direct3D performance, in which case the 9800 Pro would be your card.
The x600 is just a 9600 for the PCI-e interface. Don't even bother with it. This is a GIANT warning to you. If you have to, sacrifice spending money on another part of the system. Just DO NOT get the x600. I beg of you!
Oh, and you're looking for a gaming computer, an AMD-based box would suit your needs better, and even be a little cheaper on the pocketbook.
Good article at the start but then kind of lost focus at the end. You shoulda stopped when you found out the 9600xt w p4 3.2 ghz runs above the min. 45 fps on medium settings at 1024x768. That was nice to know. cause like only 1 in 40 reviewers ever tests such a midrange setup. You also did good putting the 3100 sempron in there and said it wasn't any faster at the above settings. That's very nice to know.
But for some reason you kept going and came to the conclusion that you 'all' anyone needs is a $400 x800 pro. lol. And then proceeded to only list prices for x800 pros. Where's the under $100 9600 xt in there?
How about a 9800 pro? Those are $150 new right now. They are quite a bit faster than 9600xts according to all the reviews I read a year ago or so. And as you can see they are alot less money than a x800 pro.
Another misleading benchmark was the one with the athlon 64 3000. You should have also ran the athlon 64 3000 at 1024x768 at medium settings. Running it only at 1600x1200 doesn't show much cause that resolution is a graphics card bottleneck.
Also some weird comment about a 3100 sempron keeping up with a 3.8ghz p4? Ok now wake up smell the coffee.
It seems you concluded that to run the game the absolute best you needed a min. of a x800 pro and a p4 3.2 ghz. That wasn't your initial premise.
My results show something a bit different. Adding a 9700 pro to a 2500xp cpu greatly increases fps compared to the tests in the article using a 9600xt and a P4 2.4 ghz cpu. Granted I have a different cpu but I believe it is pretty comparable powerwise to the P4 2.4.
It is no surprise that the venerable 9700 Pro beats the pants off the 9600XT. The former is a 256-bit, 8-pipe part, and the latter is a 128-bit, 4-pipe part.
But both of these I would call "mid-range" -- certainly not an X800 Pro! $400 is how much the 9700 Pro cost when it was first released over two years ago! And it was the undisputed "king of the hill" until it was incrementally upgraded in the form of the 9800 Pro (which can be had now for under $200 -- a true "mid-range" price). The idea that an X800 Pro is a "mid-range" card is just asinine. In 12 months, yes, it will be a mid-range card. But not at the moment.
Just for reference, I am able to stay above 45 fps in all 4 demos @ 1280x1024, high-quality, no AA, no AF on a stock-speed P4 3.0C/Springdale system using a 9800 Pro.
The 9800 Pro CAN be had under $200, but every model I've seen is the 128-bit version. Almost everywhere I've looked, retail companies STILL want $200-$230 for a 256-bit 9800 Pro. 9800XTs are still going for $250+. If you're going to spend $230 on a card, go for a somewhat futureproof and get a 6600GT. I don't care if nVidia is your cup-o-tea or not, but you can't deny that the 6600GT is the undisputed king of the midrange cards. Look, even Sander said so; and Sander is GOD... if there was a God... but we're not bringing religion into this. The 6600GT is your flavor if you don't want to spend more that $210-$230. A PCI-e version of the 6600GT can even be had for LESS than $200 at http://www.newegg.com.
Newegg sells a 256 bit 9800 pro for $190 made by Sapphire. The 6600gt does look good tho in most benchmarks. I think in HL2 the 9800 pro is probably still faster. Also does 256 bit really help out the 9800 pro? 128 bit might be good enough.
Also on eBay you get used 9700/9800 pros for closer to $130 from reputable sellers. But better know what you are looking for.
I definitely agree that the x800 pro is not a middle range card. It's $400. it's a high end card. the x800xt and 6800 ultra are even higher end cards. Maybe ultra high end.
btw, I was just pointing out that the reviewer said replacing the 9600xt with a x800 pro didn't make a difference at 1024x768 medium settings with a p4. In my test, however, a 9700 pro with an AMD p4 equivalent (2500xp) made a big difference. I got double the framerates in every demo compared to the article's 9600xt test.
No no no no... 128-bit is DEFINITELY not good enough for the 9800 Pro. Going from 256-bit to 128-bit absolutely killed the 9800 Pro's performance. The only reason the 6600GT is able to pull off 8-pipelines and 128-bit memory bandwidth is because it has GDDR3; the memory comes at a stock speed setting of 1000MHz.
I wouldn't trust eBay companies; no matter how good their prices were. Especially with computer hardware (video cards, CPUs, and memory being the things I trust the least). Still, think about it: would you rather buy a 9800 Pro for $190 and have games of mid-2005 killing your video card, thus making you upgrade... again. Or, would you rather spend the extra $30 or so right now and not have to worry about upgrading your video card for at LEAST another year and a half?
Yeah, and the sad part about the x800 Pro: it's an 8-pixel pipeline architecture. Not only does my $271 6800OC beat the pants off of the x800 Pro, but my 6800OC was also fully unlockable, so I have every single pipeline open now.