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FortKnox's Journal: A Rare Computer Purchase (Video Card) 16

Journal by FortKnox
OK, I'm dying to play a couple newer games, like Battlefield 1942, et al...
But
I still have my TNT2 Ultra video card (bought it like 7 years ago for $250). Anwyway, I'm looking for the best video card for the money. Second parameter is that I don't wanna spend a lot more than $50.
Should I just find a nice GeForce2? Anyone know of any reports that compare benchmarks AND prices?
If I spend less money, I may be able to pickup a new mobo+CPU (running an old Athlon 800 atm).
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A Rare Computer Purchase (Video Card)

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  • I have a GeForce 2 with an Athlon 1700 XP. I can play most of the new games at frame rates from 20FPS and up. I'm thinking of upgrading to a GeForce TI 4200 to get some more speed but they are like $150 right now.

    I don't know of a price and benchmark comparison, but I know all the latest line of GeForce cards were reviewed at Tom's Hardware. Apparently, there is a big difference in between the different models. Some of the latest GeForce cards were slower than the GeForce 3 cards, which were much cheaper.

  • I'm running a geforce 3 ti200 and it suits all of my needs (which are admittedly small) perfectly. The price difference between a gf3 and a gf4 is almost negligable ($10 - $20 diff @ ~$100 - $110). As long as you don't have an FPS obsession that would do you fine for quite a while.

    On the other hand, I hear the new-ish Radeons are nice. I don't know why I'm even responding I'm so out of the loop. I only use my video card to play mame anymore anyways.
  • Unless you're going to get a real GeForce2 for a good price, don't skimp and get the MX version, it sucks...
    I've only experienced 10-20% gains from my overclocked Creative Labs TNT2 Ultra (on a Dual PIII 600 system running XP Pro)
    And only in Quake 3 is it noticeable... UT GOTY still runs exactly the same (well, 5-8fps more, whoopee...)
    (FYI: I am running nVidia drivers too...)

    Of course, I paid $35 for my TNT2 (after paying $260 for my original TNT w/ TV-in and out, and $240 for a Voodoo2 before that) I vow to not spend more than $80 on a video card from now on... period.
  • My GF2mx400 64mb pci still runs everything I want to play, Though for $50 you can get a gf4mx, which should be fine for you.
    Newegg.com is always good [newegg.com]
  • ASUS nVidia GeForce 4 MX440-8X 64MB Dual VGA: $89

    For the $50 mark I'd actually go for a Radeon 7500, but that's just me.

    Having said that... BF1942! We need a Slashdot clan.
    • I hear the performance of the MX440 is the close to or worse than a GeForce3. If you want to upgrade to the GeForce 4 line, you should stick to the TI series.

      • I hear the performance of the MX440 is the close to or worse than a GeForce3. If you want to upgrade to the GeForce 4 line, you should stick to the TI series.

        *shrug* I really don't care. It was pretty cheap, and I can play bf1942 at 1280x1024 at very high frame rates.
        • *shrug* I really don't care. It was pretty cheap, and I can play bf1942 at 1280x1024 at very high frame rates.

          I didn't mean to imply it was a bad card (which I did). I just meant that GeForce 3 cards are cheaper and perform just as well. I sure wouldn't mind having a GeForce3 or an MX440 compared to my card. :-)

          By the way, what processor do you run BF1942 with?

          • I didn't mean to imply it was a bad card (which I did).

            I know it isn't the best, but I saw the benchmarks on the Gf3 and the 4MX was a bit above it and I figured that I like the capabilities of the GeForce 4 (Dual VGA is nice) so I went with that one. My point is I don't care about a 10fps difference when it is over 65fps anyway :)

            By the way, what processor do you run BF1942 with?

            P4 2.4Ghz
  • I'm running:

    AMD 1600XP
    256MB DDR
    GeForce2


    and I am playing BF1942, but for ensuring effective gameplay I play at 800x600@16 and I get approximately 30-40FPS in BF1942. Only problem is that I'm not sure if it is *always* 30-40FPS because the stupid "game.showfps 1/0"? console command text sucks (u can barely read it :( ).

    And here's my vote for a BF1942 Slashdot clan :) lol.
  • The one I reconverted for Family use has a GeForce2 MX with 32Meg onboard. Didn't have a complaint from my brother who is into FPS and racing games.
    The computer I build for my sister has a Matrox G200, which runs fine on most -not too recent- games.

    In the Dual I have a GeForce4 or something like that. Don't know the exact model. Can't say anything about that one, because there still is no OS on the machine.

    The other machines I have/maintain are laptops wich all have ATI Mobility chipsets. Those are not used for gaming anyway.

    The family server has a Matrox Mystique and my future server some cheap-ass onboard Cirrus Logic chip. Both do X just fine and why would one want to game on servers anway ;-)

  • Abit GeForce ti4200 [newegg.com] on sale at newegg.com for $120 right now.
  • The ATI Radeon 9000 Pro which I bought recently just got proper drivers for Linux, thanks to the latest XFree86 release (like a couple of days ago).

    Under most circumstances the 9000 is faster that my GeForce2 GTS (which is said to be up to 2x better than a GeForce2 MX). So.... Go for ATI ! It's not the fastest card around (perhaps 50% slower than 9700's, possible more) but it will fit nicely in your budget.

    • it seems to be the minority opinion in this journal entry, but i wanted to second the nomination by forged. go with the radeon 9000 pro.

      here [gameve.com] is a page with both the 64MB and the 128MB versions. the 64 meg version should be faster than a gf2 almost all the time. the 128 meg version should be comparable to a gf4mx most of the time, and once in a while it's comparable to some gf4 ti4200 cards.

      one other thing the 9000 has that the gf2 doesn't (have is though the gf4 does) is directx 8.1 in hardware. so it won't be outdated as quickly.

      older tom's hardware gfx roundup [tomshardware.com]
      extremetech article with 3dmark2001se points per dollar [extremetech.com] (also older)
      oldish extreme-tech [tech-report.com]

      i point out the articles are older because both nvidia and ati have had new driver revisions. this is the only more recent one i could find in my quick search.

      dukgamers [dukgamers.com]

      also of note, vid cards are likely to drop in price again as ati plans to release the R350 [shacknews.com] within the next month. of course, there is always something bigger around the corner, but a month isn't so bad if you can stand the wait.

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