Best PCI Video Card under $50? GF2 Mx200?

AuctionHugh

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Nov 22, 2001
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My sons both inherited gateway pII 233 machines with pci video. I would really appreciate some advice about what the best CHEAP VIDEO card to stick in it would be. Visiontek 32mg GF2 MX200's are about $40 after rebate (but only one $10 rebate available). Any better cards? They want to play pretty recent games but do not need blazing framerates.

Thanks for your time!
-Hugh
 

Actaeon

Diamond Member
Dec 28, 2000
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PCI Videocard?

Hrm, That GF2MX sounds good, not much of a bottleneck, due to the fact your CPU's are awfully slow.

BTW, they don't play "recent" games on that comp. ;)
 

AnAndAustin

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Apr 15, 2002
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;) Exactly the prob Actaeon.

:( Sorry AuctionHugh, at 233mhz those PCs would need major upgrades to stand any chance of running modern games, no matter what you could spend on a gfx card. My advice would be to sell them second hand and put the extra towards a faster second hand, or possibly new PC.

:( I take it you mean the PCs don't have AGP slots, the GF2MX cards are about the best PCI solutions available & obtainable today. A second hand Voodoo3 or Banshee may be a decent match for your CPU.

:) To play pretty recent games you really are looking at the following as a minimum to get decent frame rates:

AMD/Intel 700-800mhz (pref 1ghz)
128MB RAM (256MB much better)
13GB harddisk (minimum unless you want to install 1 game at a time, 20GB+ much better)
GeForce2TI/GTS or Radeon7500 (GeForce3 or Radeon8500 would be much faster)
 

Actaeon

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Dec 28, 2000
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If you're still interested in getting another videocard.

Heres a whole list for sale from Newegg.com

Enjoy!
 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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voodoo5 pci or radeon pci would tear that gf2 mx200 a new butthole. but u'd have to be real lucky to find them for under $50 (it's possible tho... i seen it on FS/FT)
 

AnAndAustin

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Apr 15, 2002
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;) Voodoo5's are still a decent option for older PCs, I wasn't aware of PCI versions though. Unless you do have an AGP slot AuctionHugh, and it just happens that the PCs are currently using PCI for gfx and leaving the AGP slot empty. If so you won't be able to use AGP cards with > 16MB RAM as older mobos can't support the req of AGP 2.0. Don't get AGP 2.0 (the standard) mixed up with AGP 2x (the multiplier).

Roundup of gfx cards all from the old TNT2 right up to GF4 (albeit on an AthlonXP2000+ CPU)

Athlon 1100mhz & different gfx cards (inc Voodoo4, 5, GF2mx, GF2gts & Radeon)

Different CPUs with the top Voodoo4 (4500)

:( As you can see the Voodoo4 & 5 cards were designed for faster CPUs (500mhz+), you're unlikely to see the benefit of Voodoo4/5 vs Voodoo3/Banshee. The GF2MX200 is about 50% slower than the GF2MX400 and GF2MX (standard version).

:D See what prices you find locally (esp 2nd hand), or else I still stand by my advice, sell the PCs and put the extra cash to a more modern 2nd hand or new entry level PC.
 

Actaeon

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Dec 28, 2000
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Guys, keep in mind, he really doesn't need a Voodoo5 for his videocard, its a 233MHZ Pentium 2. ;-)

You can probally find a TNT2 PCI for cheap somewhere. Hell, that card will still be bottlenecked by the CPU. ;)

I honestly believe investing your money for videocards for these comps is a waste of time and money.

But I do agree with what AnAndAustin said, sell those PCs, try to bum some cash, and get yourself a decent computer for the kids.
 

AuctionHugh

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Nov 22, 2001
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Thanks guys! Yes it has no AGP slot. Makes sense to avoid anything faster than a GF2 if the processor won't support it. Yes, I know it will not play super graphix intensive games due to the slow PII, but they have and xbox and a gamecube for that. I got the PIIs free from work because they were not working, and all I have to buy is a graphix card plus a $10 sound card, that is a cheap PII. So here I goooooo....

Compuplus has the visiontek mx200 for $38 less a $10 rebate, but they charge $14!! shipping per card!! Sheesh that kills me. But I may just go for that....

Thanks again for the advice,
-Hugh
 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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i would still go for either a radeon or voodoo5. reason being, is that in the near future, he can always upgrade to a faster cpu ot hold his rig over for a little while more. could prolly get a celery500 in the neighborhood of $30 over on FS/FT. btw, i just picked up a radeon pci for $35 over on FS/FT :D :cool: ;) :)
 

NeoMadHatter

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Nov 29, 2000
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i just got the visiontek gf2 mx200 at best buy. it was $40 after rebate. not too bad. although i'm using it as my secondary for dual monitors. this is so awesome. i'm starting to really like dual monitors.
 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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AuctionHugh: upgrade the cpu and get a radeon or voodoo5. one thing i forgot to mention about the tnt2 card were it's horrible 2d. radeon's and voodoo's have good 2d (only lags behind matrox) & decent 3d performance.
 

AnAndAustin

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Apr 15, 2002
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:) Upgrading AuctionHugh's CPU depends completely on the archy of his mobo. PII 233mhz, so it shouldn't be Skt7, possible Slot1? What would he need then, a Slot1 to FCPGA converter?

:) From what AuctionHugh says, he just wants a PC for Internet, education, Office apps and the whole PC experience. If he's happy with his Xbox & GameCube, there's no need to get carried away. I'd say, if your not interested in PC gaming, you COULD just get an old 2MB+ PCI card for like $2!
 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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i suppose u're right... if office apps and net surfing is all he wants... radeon or voodoo would be somewhat of a waste. get a matrox card... they are the king of 2d :)
 

AuctionHugh

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Nov 22, 2001
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They do have some decent older games sitting around, like the various PC starwars games, like the one similar to starcraft. I'd like to let them play against each other by networking them together and/or hooking them up to our DSL router (but it will be half a house and one floor away, what a hassle!). So I'm willing to invest $50 into their machines. Though I did get my current toshiba celery for under $300 total. The Mobo is quite old (no agp slot for example), so I seriously doubt it could be upgraded. Easy to find out by inputting the gateway serial number into the support.gateway.com site or whatever, but I sincerly doubt I would bother. Lot of work, likely hassles, not that great a PC anyway. In fact a new mobo/cpu combo might make more sense, but the case is the old mobo style, probably would need a new case, new ram, etc. By the time I do all that, just get a darn used celeron pc for $150 or some other compgeek special.

From what I've seen, the gf2mx200 is the only pci graphics card under $50 right now that has 32 megs of ram, new in the box anyway.

Love the opinions, keep them coming if you have more thoughts.

Thanks,
-Hugh
 

trikster2

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Oct 28, 2000
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AuctionHugh

Those computers may not play games that are "recent" but they can play games less than 2 years old that are still pretty good.

I played Quake3, Baldur's gate, Diablo2, 1/2 Life (which still has a lot of life) and Deus X all on a PPRo with a PCI Voodoo2.

Mostly at 800x600 res on a 17" monitor. If things got slow I would just turn off the "eye candy".

Nice thing is most of the old games can be had for penny's and still have TONS of entertainment, esp if you network the two.

Course if the case has a standard ATX powersupply a 1Ghz Duron and Motherboard will only cost you $100 each, or you could spend that $100 on two more games for the xbox....

 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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trikster, u took the words right outta my mouth with the old school voodoo idea :) if they are indeed older games... and if they are not 3d... matrox is the way to go. but if u want some 3d, and still have good 2d... voodoo2 or voodoo3 will be a nice fit. i have seen quite a few voodoo3 2000 pci cards over on ft/ft go in the neighborhood of $20-$25 shipped. i am a bit skeptical about the mx200 becuz of it's not so hot 2d.
 

TJN23

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May 4, 2002
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i'm in a similar situation as ActionHugh

My brother wants to play recent FPS games. right now his Voodoo4 4500 PCI card does kick butt, like for UT and Serious Sam, but its being less and less cooperative with the newer games. His Dell 700MHZ Celery system with 256MB PC133 SDRAM is a decent system with a crappy stock dell mobo, which doesnt have any AGP slots. I am seriously thinking a GF2MX400, but if you guys dont think it will really run any newer games (He's really into jedi knight 2) then what should i do? wont it run fine on a 700mhz with 256megs of ram? or should a radeon be better?

Thanks in advance
 

TJN23

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May 4, 2002
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GF4 ? you dont see it having problems rendering Jedi Knight 2 and other such top of the line FPS games anytime soon?

thanks again
 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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Originally posted by: TJN23
GF4 ? you dont see it having problems rendering Jedi Knight 2 and other such top of the line FPS games anytime soon?

thanks again
i think the gf4 mx440 should be ok. besides, i think (tho i could be wrong) the mx440 is the fastest pci card out.
 

AuctionHugh

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Nov 22, 2001
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Well, here are some choices:

ATI Radeon 32MB PCI TV OUT (Video Out) - Retail Boxed Price: $39.00

Visiontek Xtasy Geforce2 MX200 32MB PCI - BULK Price: $35.00

Visiontek Xtasy Geforce2 MX200 32MB PCI - Retail Boxed $31 after $10 mail-in-rebate

Visiontek Geforce2 MX400 32MB SDRAM PCI - Bulk Price: $39.00

Now don't you happy helpers go and BUY OUT all these cards before I get a chance to buy 2! But these prices are good, and about $11 s&h to michigan.

So, which one is the best deal??

I'd like two identical cards, so I was planning on #2 and #3 above... I've had problems with ATI drivers and support in the past, but with such an old card as the first one above the drivers must be stable. And lots of you posters seem hot on the radion as opposed to the gf2 for base level (2 year old quality) games.

And is the mx400 worth the extra $5? It is not an Xtasy and no retail box on that one.

What do you guys/gals think?

Thanks, -Hugh

 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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mx400 is pretty much strictly a low end gaming card.
radeon is a card good for a little of everything (low end gaming... slower then mx400, dvd playback, nice crisp 2d). my vote is for the radeon... i personally haven't had any troubles with radeon drivers... i am on my fourth radeon (radeon le, radeon vivo, and 2 radeon 8500's).
 

Acanthus

Lifer
Aug 28, 2001
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Originally posted by: spankyOO7
mx400 is pretty much strictly a low end gaming card.
radeon is a card good for a little of everything (low end gaming... slower then mx400, dvd playback, nice crisp 2d). my vote is for the radeon... i personally haven't had any troubles with radeon drivers... i am on my fourth radeon (radeon le, radeon vivo, and 2 radeon 8500's).
Appearently youve never played Giants, Sacrifice, or that new FPS based on Command and Conquer (i forget the name) the radeon has issues with all of those games to this day..
 

spanky

Lifer
Jun 19, 2001
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Originally posted by: Acanthus
Appearently youve never played Giants, Sacrifice, or that new FPS based on Command and Conquer (i forget the name) the radeon has issues with all of those games to this day..
yes you are correct. i do not play any of those games. the only game i play is CS, and my radeons have been great. now getting back on topic, AuctionHugh clearly stated the pc's he's upgrading will be for mostly web surfing & older games (ie - starcraft). i don't recall radeons having problems in those depts.
 

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