Best card for under $100 ?

wizards23

Member
Oct 23, 2002
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it seems that its the radeon 9000 128mb. but what about the 9000 pro with only 64mb? what one is better? i would assume its the 128mb because more ram is always a good thing.

or what about the gainward 4200 64mb that was the value pick in this weeks hardware prices? should i just pony up the extra money and get this ? is it worth it? what disadvantages would this card have with only 64mb of ram? thx
 

wizards23

Member
Oct 23, 2002
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just thought about the 8500LE. i think it has beaten the 9000 in some benchmark scores.

i will be making a new rig with a p4 2.4b and some corsair xms 3200 ddr ram, if that is any consideration in the choice of card.

eventually i will upgrade to the nv30 or the best card on the market when doom3 comes out, so this card will be a temporary solution for about a year at best.

thx!
 

Deeko

Lifer
Jun 16, 2000
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I would have suggested the 8500LE if you wanted to stay under 100 exactly. A tinsy bit could have gotten you a Ti4200 though.
 

fwtong

Senior member
Feb 26, 2002
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If you get an 8500le, check the clock speed and memory! Some of the OEM 8500LE boards are underclocked and have slow memory.
 

Tates

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Jun 25, 2000
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Why mess around with an LE version when you can get a full 8500 for $92 at NewEgg?

That's the 64mb version.

LE (250/250) with 128mb at $96 is the better deal. Should easily oc to 275/275. The extra ram comes in handy, especially with the newer games.
 

halkebul

Senior member
Aug 26, 2002
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Originally posted by: Tates
Why mess around with an LE version when you can get a full 8500 for $92 at NewEgg?

That's the 64mb version.

LE (250/250) with 128mb at $96 is the better deal. Should easily oc to 275/275. The extra ram comes in handy, especially with the newer games.

You'll use that speed far better than the extra RAM. That is, it's better for today's games. And how do you know he wants to overclock? You could also use the Doom III will require more memory argument but Doom III won't be playable with 8500 LEs anyway. And he says he'll upgrade to NV30 for Doom III. Just playing devil's advocate here.
 

Tates

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Jun 25, 2000
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You'll use that speed far better than the extra RAM. That is, it's better for today's games. And how do you know he wants to overclock? You could also use the Doom III will require more memory argument but Doom III won't be playable with 8500s anyway. And he says he'll upgrade to NV30 for Doom III. Just playing devil's advocate here.

The answer is simple...for only $4 extra bucks, the LE 128mb is the better deal.
 

halkebul

Senior member
Aug 26, 2002
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Originally posted by: Tates
You'll use that speed far better than the extra RAM. That is, it's better for today's games. And how do you know he wants to overclock? You could also use the Doom III will require more memory argument but Doom III won't be playable with 8500s anyway. And he says he'll upgrade to NV30 for Doom III. Just playing devil's advocate here.

The answer is simple...for only $4 extra bucks, the LE 128mb is the better deal.

So you would get slower memory and gpu.
128MB which is greater than 64MB but ya won't need it as he's upgrading to NV30 as soon as games that require more memory come out.
Still don't understand where your coming from.
The question is, what is the best sub $100 ATI 8500 card for him now?

Answer: ATI 8500 64MB graphics card.

Thanx for providing an alternate view though.
 

Tates

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Jun 25, 2000
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So you would get slower memory and gpu.
128MB which is greater than 64MB but ya won't need it as he's upgrading to NV30 as soon as games that require more memory come out.
Still don't understand where your coming from.
The question is, what is the best sub $100 ATI 8500 card for him now?

Answer: ATI 8500 64MB graphics card.

Thanx for providing an alternate view though.

I've owned a 64mb retail 8500 and now own a 128mb retail version and I'll repeat myself....the 128mb version is the better deal, especially when you're talking chump change of $4.

Thank you for providing the alternative view ;)
 

WarSong

Golden Member
Jan 16, 2002
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Originally posted by: halkebul
Originally posted by: Tates
You'll use that speed far better than the extra RAM. That is, it's better for today's games. And how do you know he wants to overclock? You could also use the Doom III will require more memory argument but Doom III won't be playable with 8500s anyway. And he says he'll upgrade to NV30 for Doom III. Just playing devil's advocate here.

The answer is simple...for only $4 extra bucks, the LE 128mb is the better deal.

So you would get slower memory and gpu.
128MB which is greater than 64MB but ya won't need it as he's upgrading to NV30 as soon as games that require more memory come out.
Still don't understand where your coming from.
The question is, what is the best sub $100 ATI 8500 card for him now?

Answer: ATI 8500 64MB graphics card.

Thanx for providing an alternate view though.


Both the 8500 64MB and the 8500LE 128MB generally over-clock to about the same levels (~300/~300) so the only real difference is the extra memory. I do agree with your statement that this level card will not fully utilize the 128MB. That being said, I have a 8500LE128 :)

edit: this is assuming a "built by ati" retail 8500le. "powered by ati" and/or oem 8500le's are a different story.
 

wizards23

Member
Oct 23, 2002
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ok thx everyone for your views. I still am not 100% decided yet on which card to get. like i said i will probably only use it for about a year. games i will be playing mostly wc3 and ut2003. im am always open to overclocking btw, but dont know too much about oc'ing vid cards. so i am trying to minimize the cost of this card in relation to the new rig im putting togething, because i know i wont be needing the card for that long.

from what i gather so far, i can OC the 128mb version to about the same clock speeds at the 64mb. so i guess im leaning more towards that. but one thing i must ask is compatibility with direct x 9. would these cards support it? i know that the 9000 will. thats why it was initially my first choice. also can anyone comment on the performance increase i would see buy going with a geforce 4200 over the 8500LE? thx again i appreciate all your help!
 

halkebul

Senior member
Aug 26, 2002
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Both cards, overclocked, would pair well with a P4 2.4B. The overclocked Ti 4200 would churn out more FPS. Depends on your budget - the ti 4200 cost about $35 more.
 

Rand

Lifer
Oct 11, 1999
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Originally posted by: wizards23

but one thing i must ask is compatibility with direct x 9. would these cards support it? i know that the 9000 will. thats why it was initially my first choice.

The R8500/R9000 are compatible with DX9 in the sense that they will run games that utilize DX9. Neither board has full hardware support for the entire DX9 feature set however.
If you want complete hardware support for DX9 then the Radeon 9500/9700 are the only products presently available that can provide that.
 

Flatline

Golden Member
Jun 28, 2001
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Yeah, but there won't be any games utilizing DX9 for quite a while, and he'll probably be upgrading before then anyway.
 

wizards23

Member
Oct 23, 2002
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ok im gonna go with the 8500LE. now, someone was mentioning the slowing clock speeds on OEM versions. I was looking at the one on newegg.com for $96. looks like its a saphire brand. is this a safe choice? everything is idential to a retail ATI version correct?
 

Beandog

Senior member
Aug 24, 2001
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Here is a nice review from Sharky between the MSI 64Mb and 128MB versions and how they perform in current benchmarks...make sure you read the Overlocked analysis of these two cards, gives you an idea of current performance between 64 vs 128MB of memory on a TI4200 card.
LINKED
 

Eman1

Member
Sep 27, 2002
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How about the 8500LE 128 from crucial.com for $109. For a while they were shipping it free. Don't know if they are still.

 

tenoc

Golden Member
Jan 23, 2002
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eman,as I recall, the Crucial 8500le is really an 8500lelele.

Translation, a very slow POS!
 

fwtong

Senior member
Feb 26, 2002
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I recently got a Sapphire 8500le 128mb from Newegg. It's clocked at 250/200. I know retail is better, but they're a little harder to find now because ATI wants to push the 9000. Since I was moving up from a GF2MX, this is working out great for me, it's faster than the GF2MX and fully supprts DirectX8. Not to mention, anything faster/better probably won't matter with my cpu.
 

Eman1

Member
Sep 27, 2002
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Tenoc,

Why would you say the crucial is lelele? It is clocked at 250mhz core and has 6ns memory (like most 128mb versions).

Just curious. This seems to be spec for most 8500le 128mb cards. Am I missing something?

Eman
 

Rand

Lifer
Oct 11, 1999
11,071
1
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Originally posted by: Eman1
Tenoc,

Why would you say the crucial is lelele? It is clocked at 250mhz core and has 6ns memory (like most 128mb versions).

Just curious. This seems to be spec for most 8500le 128mb cards. Am I missing something?

Eman

Simply put...

R8500: 275/275
Soyo R8500: 290/290
The vast majority of 8500LE's: 250/250.
The above is also ATi's specification for the R8500LE core.

The much maligned R8500's nicknamed the R7500'LELE': 230/230 or 250/200.

The slowest Radeon 8500 available....
The All In Wonder R8500DV: 230/190.

Then of course you have Crucial.... 250/166.
They've strangled the 8500LE with bandwdith limitations to the point wherein it's typically getting beaten out by the GF4 MX440 in most cases..
The R9000Pro decisively outperforms it.
It's sad enough that even the R8500DV manages to outperform it.

This at a price that manages to be higher then virtually all other R8500LE's.

Room to overclock the memory? Not realy.
Even most of the sub-par 8500LE's at least give you 4ns DDR SDRAM in TSOP packaging.
A far cry from the BGA packaged 3.3ns DDR you can find on the best R8500's but not too bad.
Crucial? 6ns DDR, TSOP packaged. Just enough to much their stock clock of 166MHz DDR and leave you with little room to overclock.

In short, I'd be inclined to say... Crucial has made a mockery of the R8500.
May as well buy an R9000 non-Pro for close to half the price given the performance your getting.
 

JSSheridan

Golden Member
Sep 20, 2002
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Eman1, 6ns memory isn't good with respect for video card memory, even though that is typical for system RAM. My retail R8500LE w/ 128MB has 3.6ns memory, and many new cards like the NV30 or R300 will come with memory rated at least 3ns.

A question I have now, is why haven't memory manufacuters put 3.3ns, 267MHz DDR on system memory PCB's and sell it as PC4200 @ DDR 533? That would be perfect for the P4's, and there wouldn't be the need for a second memory controller. The fastest they are using now is 5ns modules. I know a JEDEC standard for that would be a long way off, but that hasn't stopped anyone from selling and buying PC3500. Anyway, what are the architectural reasons for this? Thanks. Peace.