View Full Version : HELP I cant stand this problem anymore!!
04-27-2009, 08:38 AM
HI, im new. I am planning to buy an AGP video card for my old AGP 8x PC. (And I bought it like 3 years ago, PCI-E bus already existed, I think I got cheated). I am currently in the possibility of buying either an ATI radeon 9800pro (used and more expensive) or a brand new ATI Radeon x1550 AGP powercolor. I have looked and investigated almost everything possible about this cards, specially the older one. What I found is that the 9800pro, is not only faster according to this page, I mean it has more memorybandwith, its 256bit bus, more shader processors, more pipelines, in fact its twice pipelines than the newer one. So that card was like the best of its time, but I dont know if the x1550 can compete with that one, even though its like 4 years newer than the 9800pro. The truth is that many of the recent AGP cards are coming with less memorybus than the ones from 4 years ago, for example the HD2400 pro agp, has only 64-bit bus, which I think its crap, but it has ShaderModel 4.0 AVIVO and other features. But maybe all this things are no use if the card is slow. I found that the x1550 was better, because its suppossed to have 128-bit bus and its almost from the same date release. But i dont know if its better than the 9800pro. It still has newer technology, but I dont know if that is more important than the fact that the 9800pro is faster and has more pipelines (but its older and used). But the weirdest of all, is that according to the specifications, the core clock and memory clock is greater in the x1550 than the 9800pro, and still the older card has more memory bandwith and shader processor etcetera. Of course I dont want to play last generation games like Gears of war, Farcry2...not only because my PC is also crappy (its a Pentium 4 2.66GHZ 768MB RAM 80GB HDD PC-CHIPS Motherboard) but also I dont feel like playing those games on an AGP card is worthy, i dont even have a LCD, just a dam CRT monitor, so my maximum resolution is 1024 x 768. But lets consider that I buy an LCD in the future. BUT I do want to play older games i have right know and other ones that are more or less more recent, like HALO, AREA 51, Call of Duty, Need for Speed undergroung, Collin Mac RAe 2004, and probably Half Life 2 or DOOM 3 and others. Those games wouldnt be a problem for the 9800pro, specially cause I've seen its benchmarkings, but will the x1550, four years supposdly more advanced card will suffer with those old games? Please I hate this dilema, which one should I buy? Or maybe its better to wait till i buy a new PC and then I get the best card out there? and right now i just buy anything that is better from my incredibly old Radeon 7000 SE? Or is it worth to take all the juice possible from my old PC? Consider also that I cant buy something too expensive right now, just the cards I mentioned and probably similar ones. By the way I dont know how much power my powersource has, they say you should have at least 350watt power if you dont have too much things attached to the PC, I only have the basic things. Is there a way I can know this withouth taking it to an engineer? If I just open the CPU gabinet can I figure it out by myself? THANKS for reading, hope I get a consistent answer.
04-27-2009, 10:50 AM
It's better to buy a new system. You should replace your Pentium 4, and go with PCI-E for your gpu.
04-27-2009, 04:47 PM
The X1550 is old technology ( older , than X1600/X1900 ) .
I would advise against upgrading at all . The 9800 Pro is decent but it will not run newer games , due to the fact that it doesn't support SM3 , the X1550 is well ... junk , when it comes to gaming .
If you want to run newest games at medium or so settings , you could spend money on a HD 3850 AGP or a X1950 Pro AGP ( the latter being considerably slower ) . And either way you are going to need much more RAM .
Seriously , it's a far better idea to get a new PC .
As for your PSU , you can tell what PSU it is by looking at it . Open your PC's sidepanel , and in the upper left corner there should be a box . And the wattage should be written on it . You probably have a 300W noname PSU , so you are going to need a new one , if you go for the HD 3850 or X1950 Pro .
Don't know about the 9800 Pro , and the X1550 should run on it .
If you're looking for something to tide you over until you get a new system, then try looking at some of the more recent AGP cards from ATI. The 3650 is a good midrange AGP card for a decent price. It should outperform both of those you listed and not be bottlenecked significantly by the rest of your system.
An explanation for the card's lower clock speeds, bus widths, etc. lies in the generation difference. The first number in the card's name is the generation, while the second is the performance level. That means that the hd2400 pro is the low end of the hd2xxx series cards, the x1550 is in the low-midrange bracket of the x1k generation, while the radeon 9800 is the top of the line of the radeon 9xxx generation.
By the way, the 9800 IS faster than the x1550. It's just that newer technology and better manufacturing allows higher clocks in the x1550's generation.
edit: The hd3850 will be bottlenecked significantly by your system, I would stay away from it since you're not likely to use an AGP card in a new build. Also, neither of the cards you listed will max out doom3 at your resolution and get nice fps. I'm kind of surprised that you're limited to 1024x768 on a CRT monitor too, up until recently most CRT monitors were capable of significantly higher resolutions than their LCD counterparts in the same price bracket. I still game on a CRT.
04-27-2009, 06:34 PM
Thanks for the answers. I would love to buy the cards you mentioned, but I cant afford much now, and I dont wanna play recent games, just the old ones I said. Lets consider I wouldnt play doom 3 for now, which of the 2 cards I mentioned should be better for a while? (I'll think of the hd 3650 too, but here in my country its too expensive). By the way is the x1550 agp a 128-bit bus card? Cause some retailers say its just 64-bit with 256mb ram the brand is powercolor.
The X1550 supports newer technologies. You wouldn't be able to play games like Bioshock at all with a 9800 because it requires Shader Model 3.0. The 9800 only supports 2.0. You wouldn't be able to play them on decent settings with the x1550 because it's such a puny card.
By the way, which flavor of 9800 are you thinking of getting? If it's the 9800SE it's not going to be faster than the x1550, but every other edition of the card is faster to the best of my knowledge.
The 3650 is well worth in my opinion as it would basically be the end of your system's upgrade path. It supports all the new technologies, performs far better, and would allow you to use your system far longer than either of the other cards.
Have you looked at online retailers? They're usually significantly cheaper than computer shops.
If you know that you aren't going to ever play newer games on this system then go with the 9800. The x1550 is really a crap card.
04-27-2009, 07:50 PM
thanks, i guess after all i knew the 9800 pro was better, next time i'll rely more on the specifications than in the date.
Ahh, you can't even really rely on specifications all the time. ATI's current architecture looks incredible on paper, but competition with Nvidia is still running strong since their more standard architecture is more efficient.
Benchmarks are a much better indicator than specifications.
04-28-2009, 04:02 AM
plus really anything would be faster than that 7000 series card
04-28-2009, 07:09 PM
If you can... go for the nVidia Geforce 6600GT. It's better than the 9800 pro and it has SM 3.0 ;)
04-30-2009, 01:42 AM
I was also thinkin in the radeon x1650pro agp 128bit 512mb. You think it could be bottleneck? Since its more powerful that the ones I mentioned and I think I can afford it.
04-30-2009, 12:06 PM
Well I don't think it's a bottleneck at all. Anyway you can get the best answer from Radiator, since his system is the closest to yours, but if you can try the 7600 GT. I had one from Galaxy, a few years ago.... really nice cooler from Zalman, also very silent. Plus I think the 7600 would be at the same price as the 1650 these days. But, nevertheless, 1650pro is a really nice card.
I'm sticking to my guns here and saying you should save up for the 3650 unless it's really priced rediculously.
You could go with the 256mb version of the x1650 and do just fine if you can get it for cheaper. The card can't use much more. And yes, the x1650 is a fair boost above the x1550 and the 9800.
05-01-2009, 03:21 AM
THANKS for everything guys! I guess thats enough advices and I know what to do now, I guess I better get that x1650 pro now and leave the HD series for later when I get a better PC, then I would buy the best ones out there, thus the inversion will be more worthy in the future.
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