Avoid PNY (sad, very sad), MSI (poor manufacturing), Gainward (well built, but factory overclocking is risky).
The Ultra tag is important in card name.
Avoid anything that ends with SE (stands for substandard edition)
There are significant, unresolved issues with nvidia chipsets and DX9 gaming performance. DX8 performance is excellent.
256 meg Ram is an advertising gimick and adds no capability in the foreseeable future.
(Sure we can't interest oyu in an ATI chipset based card? Ethically I had to ask.)
Um...i have an FX5600 256MB 8x AGP card (which btw is much slower than the 128MB version) running at 4x AGP on my motherboard (which is the older 845PE chipset that doesnt have 8xAGP) with no apparent decrease in performance. The only difference is that at AGPx4 the bus has a maximum bandwidth of 1.1GB/S, and at 8x its 2.2GB/s. Because an FX5600 is such a piece of **** it wouldnt be able to process that much information anyway. I would imagine it would start to make a difference in the higher end cards such as the FX5900 Ultra etc.
If you are looking for a good price/performance ratio, go for the FX5700 Ultra (or the Ati Radeon 9600XT i daresay )
AFAIK there is no way to "optimise" your card for 4xAGP.
GE4 FX 5950 Ultra is the current top end model (~$400+)
GE4 FX 5800 Ultra is next up (~$300-400)
GE4 FX 5700 Ultra noisy and too hot (~$250-400)
GE4 FX 5600 Ultra is a mid-line model (~$150-250)
Isnt the GeforceFX really a geforce 5? And you really really really dont want the FX5800 ultra, a cheaper FX5900 beats it any day and runs cooler. Havent heard of the FX5700 being hot and noisy, sounds more like the FX5800.
well, I was trapped on the nvidia bandwagon, until some of you guys injected some ATI into my blood
Well, with the top-end cards, just go and look at any benchmark comparing the FX5950 with the Radeon9800XT or Pro and you will be stupid to get an FX. Radeons produce better AA and AF image quality, perform better in with AA and AF enabled and are beaten only in a few games where resolution is set to standard with no Anti-Aliasing or Anisotropic Filtering, but the Radeons hold out better when there are alot of tasks to perform at high resolutions and of course, the DirectX9 compatibility issues with the FX cards, Radeon is king! The only problem with the high-end Radeons is that the FX cards overclock alot better than the Radeons, but clock speed doesn't make up for compatibility issues in the chip.
For the mid-range cards, I would say that the FX5600ultra cards are about even with the Radeon9600ultra cards. With the mid-range cards, total all-out performance and image quality isnt 'as' important as with the high-end cards, so that is why the FX has a chance to shine abit more.
But for high-end cards, stick with the Radeons, as I eventually decided to get the Radeon9800XT over the FX5950ultra.
And with the difference between an 8X card in an 8X slot and an 8X card in a 4X slot, there isn't really much difference. Only about 1-2% or no more than 5fps difference in the higher cards.
Ep, glad to see you come back and tidy up...did want to ask a one day favor, I want to enhance my resume , was hoping you could make me administrator for a day, if so, take me right off since I won't be here to do anything, and don't know the slightest about the board, but it would be nice putting "served administrator osnn", if can do, THANKS