Radeon Video Cards

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Dr. No, Jul 22, 2004.

  1. Dr. No macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2003
    #1
    I have just recieved a two year old PC (P4 Northwood 2.0 GHz) to run alongside my Mac. I am thinking about getting a new video card for it. I am used to buying ATi-branded Radeon cards, but I have noticed other companies use Radeon chipsets.

    How do Sapphire and PowerColor comapre to ATi brand in terms of quality?
     
  2. Nspace macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2004
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #2
    I have used sapphire cards before, they seem pretty decent. The ati cards are ulitmately the better ones because usualy the "powered by ati" cards are slightly clocked down from what I know. I am a bit out of the loop with the recent models, but thats how it was about a year ago.
     
  3. slughead macrumors 68030

    slughead

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #3
    If you're buying the top of the line ($500), the FX6800 Ultra is better than anything ATI has (at least, for Open GL games)...

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Finiksa macrumors 6502a

    Finiksa

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    Feb 23, 2003
    Location:
    Australia
    #4
    ATI scaled back their own video card production a couple of years ago and now make very few cards themselves. They're now pretty much just a chipset supplier like NVIDIA. All third party cards are based on ATIs reference designs so they're just as good as if made by ATI. Sapphire and PowerColor are pretty popular and inexpensive brands I don't know of any problems with them.
     
  5. m.r.m. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #5
    i have the sapphire radeon 9600xt ultimate (heatpipe, no fan). first off it´s extremely fast and runs without any problems whatsoever with overdrive enabled running at 526mHz. secondly, since the ultimate version doesn´t have a fan, it´s 0dB! just make sure air is moving inside your case (either case fan, or power supply with a fan), so the air in the case doesn´t get to hot. the best solution is to have the video card in the airstream of the case fans.
     
  6. mojohanna macrumors 6502a

    mojohanna

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    Location:
    Cleveland
    #6
    I am looking for recommendations on whether I should upgrade my video card. currently have a GeForce FX 5200 (64mb) running on a dual 1.8 G5. I have young kids whose grandparents live out of town so the plan is to create slide show DVD and motion video DVDs to send off to the gparents.
    I also enjoy gaming, but I am not hard core.
    Do I need to upgrade? If so, what should I look at? Where will I gain the performance?

    Thanks!!
     
  7. m.r.m. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #7
    it depends on how much you want to spend. if you want to upgrade i´d go for either the 128mb 9600xt (it´s faster than the 256mb version) or the 256mb 9800xt. those cards will def. give you a significant boost. i only know the pc prices. you should be able to get a good 9600xt for around $200 and a 9800xt for $400-$420.
     
  8. Dr. No thread starter macrumors regular

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    Sep 13, 2003
    #8
    Drivers

    If I get a Sapphire card, can I download the drivers directly from ATI.com, or do I have to ge them from the Sapphire web page??
     
  9. Nspace macrumors regular

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    Jul 13, 2004
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #9
    The ATI Catalyst drivers from ati.com will work fine.
     
  10. kuyu macrumors 6502a

    kuyu

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    Louisville
    #10

    True, for Doom 3. After all, the 6800 was "built to play doom 3".

    I've got an X800 pro, and it SCREAMS!!! For perspective, at 1024X768 the 9800XT won't be playable at high detail. however, the X800 will push along at about 45 fps with max detail. very decent.

    I play Far Cry with detail all the way up at 1280x1024 with no problems. (great game, by the way).


    6800 owns this round, x800 owned far cry.... lets see who wins Half life 2??? (3dc or vertex 3.0???)

    Caveat*** Far Cry looks great and plays great on the 6800, but it can't push the framerates at high res. Thus, you have to drop to 1024 on the nvidia to push the framerates the ATI puts out at 1280. Same story for 1600 and 1280 resolutions
     
  11. mgiddy911 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2004
    #11
    One thing I noticed...

    I noticied a while back, (i don't know if this is still the case) that Ati would release a card like the radeon 7500 mac edition, it would be 32MB ram at 5ns memory or so, then you would see Saphire release a radeon 7500 64MB ram at 7ns ( lower ns = faster memory). SO people would buy those thinking double the memory would be better but its actually slower memory also... any comments?
     
  12. Nspace macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2004
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #12
    Yeah I was hinting on that a bit in my post. Similarly, I have an 8500 made by ati card and it is 64 mb ddr. It overclocks nicely and it runs real fast. I can't remember the ns of the ram, and since I installed ram sinks I can't really check.

    However, my cousin bought an 8500 128 mb ddr LE, and the ns of the memory is definately higher. I can kill his card by about 3-4000 points on a 3dmark bench. His also does not overclock well, I guess the memory dosn't clock high either.

    So I wouldn't doubt it the sapphire cards are indeed not as fast, but again I do not know for sure since I haven't really been in tune with the latest cards. This may have changed if what Finiksa is true.
     

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