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supperman
06-25-03, 11:39 PM
Hi guys, this question popped up in my previous thread and although I could just post it there, the subject title wasn't that accurate, so I'd thought to start another one.

Basically, I'm getting quite a few advice from this forum to invest in a Ti series card in the sub $200 category, instead of getting the fx 5200, as a cheap alternative until more goodies come out with real DX9 games.

I've seen benchmarks where the Ti 4200 creams the 5200 (vanilla) silly. However, this review at Hexus (http://www.hexus.co.uk/review.php?review=527&page=8), which shows the 5200 convincingly outperform the Ti4200 in 3dmark2k3. Does this mean that the Ti series will do badly in DX9 games? Some people have been telling me that the Ti4200 will definitely run faster than the 5200 even with DX9 games, just without the eyecandy. So I'm rather confused now, cos I always assumed that 3dmark2k3 is a good indication of how a card will perform in DX9 games.

Any views?

Sazar
06-25-03, 11:47 PM
Originally posted by supperman
Hi guys, this question popped up in my previous thread and although I could just post it there, the subject title wasn't that accurate, so I'd thought to start another one.

Basically, I'm getting quite a few advice from this forum to invest in a Ti series card in the sub $200 category, instead of getting the fx 5200, as a cheap alternative until more goodies come out with real DX9 games.

I've seen benchmarks where the Ti 4200 creams the 5200 (vanilla) silly. However, this review at Hexus (http://www.hexus.co.uk/review.php?review=527&page=8), which shows the 5200 convincingly outperform the Ti4200 in 3dmark2k3. Does this mean that the Ti series will do badly in DX9 games? Some people have been telling me that the Ti4200 will definitely run faster than the 5200 even with DX9 games, just without the eyecandy. So I'm rather confused now, cos I always assumed that 3dmark2k3 is a good indication of how a card will perform in DX9 games.

Any views?

basically instead of using ps 2.0... the 4200 will run @ ps 1.3 therefore it will be unable to render some effects/eye candy...

in terms of raw performance the 4200 appears to be a faster product... and its loss in 3dmark03 is basically due to it not being able to run gt4 which is a dx9 benchie (utilising ps 2.0)

of a dx9 product... it has dx9 support but I can't for the life of me see it actually running dx9 games with the effects @ a playable framerate/resolution... :)

-edited post while looking up info-

hmm... it does appear that the 5200 == ps 2.0/1.1 support... gf4 ti 4200 == ps 1.3

1.1 < 1.3

StealthHawk
06-26-03, 04:51 AM
Well, as Sazar said, the gfFX5200 can run GT4 of 3dmark03, while the gf4Ti4200 cannot. GT4 has a weight of 20%, which means when directly comparing the gfFX5200 and gf4Ti4200 20% of the 3mdark03 score for the gfFX5200 should removed.

Another thing to consider is that the gfFX5200 should technically support PS1.4, which is used in GT2 and GT3. PS1.4 should be faster than PS1.1-1.3, which the gf4Ti4200 supports. This may also give the gfFX5200 a slight edge. However, I have not seen any results to disprove or prove this(time to find out, I reckon).

This test was also done pre-3dmark03 330 patch. nvidia's driver "optimizations" were still in effect back when this review was made, so the 3dmark03 scores were inflated for the gfFX cards. Without the "optimizations" the scores plummet quite a bit. I forgot how much the gfFX5200 lost in performance with the introduction of the 3dmark03 330 patch...whether it was more or less than the gfFX5800/5900, for example.

DSC
06-26-03, 04:54 AM
FX5200 cards only lost 100 points when tested on 330 with 44.03. At least, thats the case for the FX5200 that I tested. 44.65 raised the scores back to 320 levels.

Gator
06-26-03, 09:52 PM
I think besides these numbers there is a more simple explanation to this: the 5200 is designed to be a replacement to the GF4MX series. So in a sense, it's mixing apples & oranges to compare TI4200 & 5200. If your thinking about TI vs FX, then 5200 is not the right card for you. 5600 series is a more even comparison to the GF4TI4200, so start there instead, it's really a better card than 5200 anyway ;)

supperman
06-26-03, 11:39 PM
Hey guys, thanks for clearing up the matter and for the invaluable advice.

I'd just had a trip round the reviews and pricewatch and it is really becoming a most gargantuan headache.

The cheapest Ti4200 128mb 8x card is around $110, while the cheapest fx5600 128mb is $137. However, I just found out that at this price range (well... just about), you can also find the Ti4600 128mb 4x card ($160)! If I include the Ti4600 into the equation, then I'll also have to include the 256mb variant of the fx5600 at $158. And let's not forget the Ti4800SE ($141).

Ok, question time...

1. If I cap my budget to $160, then it looks like Ti4600 is the best performing card. Howeverm I'm a little concerned about the 4x AGP. I know that it's not so much of a problem now, but is it likely to become the bottleneck soon (like in 1 year)?

2. I'd heard that the fx5600 is a much poorer performer to the Ti4200, but I think it's the cheapest DX9 card available that is just about tolerable. I'd also heard that the 256mb is rather redundant, but will having a larger memory size become useful in future games?

Obviously, I'm currently leaning towards either the Ti4600 or the fx5600. Actually, my favourite would have been a fx5600 ultra with the new revision, but I can't find it anywhere at the moment!!

Thanks again for your help!

Sazar
06-26-03, 11:43 PM
Originally posted by supperman
Hey guys, thanks for clearing up the matter and for the invaluable advice.

I'd just had a trip round the reviews and pricewatch and it is really becoming a most gargantuan headache.

The cheapest Ti4200 128mb 8x card is around $110, while the cheapest fx5600 128mb is $137. However, I just found out that at this price range (well... just about), you can also find the Ti4600 128mb 4x card ($160)! If I include the Ti4600 into the equation, then I'll also have to include the 256mb variant of the fx5600 at $158. And let's not forget the Ti4800SE ($141).

Ok, question time...

1. If I cap my budget to $160, then it looks like Ti4600 is the best performing card. Howeverm I'm a little concerned about the 4x AGP. I know that it's not so much of a problem now, but is it likely to become the bottleneck soon (like in 1 year)?

2. I'd heard that the fx5600 is a much poorer performer to the Ti4200, but I think it's the cheapest DX9 card available that is just about tolerable. I'd also heard that the 256mb is rather redundant, but will having a larger memory size become useful in future games?

Obviously, I'm currently leaning towards either the Ti4600 or the fx5600. Actually, my favourite would have been a fx5600 ultra with the new revision, but I can't find it anywhere at the moment!!

Thanks again for your help!

the 5600ultra is @ BB last time I checked... at least my local store had one or two of them..

the 5600 non-ultra could well be a worse performer than the 4200... but it can run dx9 shaders et al @ a supposedly decent frame rate compared to the 5200...

the 256mb will not help with the low end cards like that... clock speed is more important IMO... and 128mb... the 256 is more a marketing gimmick than anything else... I seriously doubt the card is powerful enough to push graphics @ high LOD and levels of IQ to an extent that will require 256mb for textures..

btw... the 4600/4800 should be the card to look @ if it is in your price range.. :)

the 4400/4800se would be the next step I spose...

that is if you can';t get a 5600ultra..

The Baron
06-26-03, 11:48 PM
the 5200 dies when using any sort of shaders due to its incredibly low memory bandwidth. Same thing with antialiasing once you get above... uhh... 640 :p

I was benchmarking it all night, actually...

StealthHawk
06-27-03, 12:07 AM
Originally posted by supperman
1. If I cap my budget to $160, then it looks like Ti4600 is the best performing card. Howeverm I'm a little concerned about the 4x AGP. I know that it's not so much of a problem now, but is it likely to become the bottleneck soon (like in 1 year)?

Don't worry about AGP. It means nothing. Anything beyond 2x AGP barely affects performance. The difference from 2x to 8x is maybe 5% best case. Most of the time it's closer to 0%.

2. I'd heard that the fx5600 is a much poorer performer to the Ti4200, but I think it's the cheapest DX9 card available that is just about tolerable. I'd also heard that the 256mb is rather redundant, but will having a larger memory size become useful in future games?

For cards like the gfFX5600(non-Ultra), you'll be out of gas long before you actually need 256MB of RAM. In other words, in situations where the extra memory is needed, the card will already be choking, with or without the 256MB.

StealthHawk
06-27-03, 12:08 AM
Originally posted by Gator
I think besides these numbers there is a more simple explanation to this: the 5200 is designed to be a replacement to the GF4MX series. So in a sense, it's mixing apples & oranges to compare TI4200 & 5200. If your thinking about TI vs FX, then 5200 is not the right card for you. 5600 series is a more even comparison to the GF4TI4200, so start there instead, it's really a better card than 5200 anyway ;)

The problem is that there is a scant difference between the gfFX5200Ultra and gfFX5600 for many manufacturers.

supperman
06-27-03, 12:35 AM
Cool! I'll have to check out my local BB tomorrow!

I'd found some 5600ultras online (including the rather dishy looking Abit Siluro one), but they all list their clock speed at 350mhz (Leadtek, Albatron and Abit), which I think indicates that it is the old revision one. I would hate to get the old revision when the new one might just pop up the next week, seeing that quite a few reviews have already been spotted. I'd also imagine that since they all spot the same 5600ultra name, that they will most likely remain around the same price to stay competitive, so if I can bare to wait that long, I will wait for the revised 5600ultras.

I'm reeeaaaallly tempted with the Ti4600, but I'm also rather keen to see all the cool new effects that DX9 will bring. Argh!!! The pain!!!

SlyBoots
06-27-03, 12:39 AM
"In the end, the GeForce FX 5200 Ultra doesn't have the image quality, antialiasing prowess, or overall performance to challenge the more expensive Radeon 9600 Pro for serious gamers. Nor does it have a low enough price to challenge the GeForce FX 5200 for casual gamers on a budget. It's impressive to see the Ultra competitive with the GeForce FX 5600 in many instances, and DirectX 9 capabilities are nice to have. Still, I think consumers are going to be better off spending more on a Radeon 9600 Pro or much less on a vanilla GeForce FX 5200. "

from this review> http://www.tech-report.com/reviews/2003q2/geforcefx-5200ultra/index.x?pg=1

john19055
06-27-03, 02:58 AM
Looking at www.pricewatch.com you can get a R9600pro for around $160 and to me that would be a better lower end card to go with if you are going to be playing newer games at a desent frame rate.

Geforce4ti4200
06-27-03, 06:17 AM
heres what I would do. buy a ti4200 then a few years later when every game is directX 9, upgrade to an fx5600u

Sazar
06-27-03, 06:22 AM
Originally posted by Geforce4ti4200
heres what I would do. buy a ti4200 then a few years later when every game is directX 9, upgrade to an fx5600u


hmmm... not sure if thats a good idea :)

a few years later upgrade to a 5600u ?

a few years from now we are probably going to be well into dx10 and all the products we are discussing here will be legacy/obsolete :D

well... good for running 2d anyways :)

considering longhorn will require pretty much dx9 compatible cards.. you might want to have such a product within a year or two.. btt m$ drops longhorn :)

for now.. the 4200 should suffice... or the 4600/4400 cards too...

StealthHawk
06-27-03, 07:00 AM
Originally posted by Geforce4ti4200
heres what I would do. buy a ti4200 then a few years later when every game is directX 9, upgrade to an fx5600u

I'm not sure how much sense that makes as the gfFX5600Ultra isn't all that much faster than a gf4Ti4200. When every game is DX9, the gf4 will be choking...and so will the gfFX5600Ultra :p

I mean seriously, when "every game" is DX9 it will be 2005 at the earliest, maybe even 2006.

supperman
06-27-03, 09:53 AM
I think I will definitely need a solid DX9 (or DX10!!) card. I think I deally, I will want to tough it out for a year or so until the 5900 ultra (or the NV40) becomes barely affordable.

The quality of the card I buy now will obviously affect how long I can hold out with my upgrading. That's why the Ti4600 seems so attractive since I'm sure I can punch through any current game with that baby. Still, I would hate to miss out on all the cool effects in a DX9 game, since some of these games are starting to trickle in (Enter the Matrix comes to mind), and with the bomb dropping in November (Doom3!!!).

That's why I'm still lingering with the idea of getting a 5600ultra (revised). I believe that the 5600U is around the same performance or slightly better than the 4200, and looking at the longevity of the latter, I would think that the 5600U would last me till the DX10 cards/games. That, I figure might be around half a year more than what the 4600 will last me.

If someone can tell me that the DX9 eyecandy is crap or too subtle to be noticed, then I'm first on the line for the Ti4600.

John19055: I'm trying to escape the Radeon camp, and that's why I've kept it out of my equation so far. I would have loved to keep my 9500np since it overclocks like a beauty (390/320), but I had issues with it that can't be resolved so I'm back with nVidia.

The Baron
06-27-03, 10:13 AM
Go with the 4600. Doom 3 does NOT USE ANY DX9 EFFECTS. :D

It should serve you VERY well for the time being, and its price now should allow you to upgrade to a NV4X sometime.

ragejg
06-27-03, 05:04 PM
who is this guy "the baron" who makes all this sense? ;)

That statement, sir, even shifted MY perspective.

Is it true?

Is doom3 the "crowning achievement" of dx8 class effects?

...hmmm they're not THAT ugly, anyway...

:p

StealthHawk
06-27-03, 06:59 PM
Originally posted by ragejg
who is this guy "the baron" who makes all this sense? ;)

That statement, sir, even shifted MY perspective.

Is it true?

Is doom3 the "crowning achievement" of dx8 class effects?

...hmmm they're not THAT ugly, anyway...

:p

Doom3 is the "crowning achievement" of DX7 class effects. All features are possible on an original GeForce card. Albeit there are speedups and minor quality improvements due to shaders.

The Baron
06-27-03, 07:07 PM
I was under the impression that Doom 3 did not use any shaders, just a different rendering path optimized for different architectures. Meh, might be wrong.

ragejg
06-27-03, 07:20 PM
fo-sheezy...

um, excuse me... sorry, I think I accidentally associated DX with D3... heh... Uh, Doom3 is rendered in OpenGL paths, right?

StealthHawk
06-27-03, 07:24 PM
Originally posted by ragejg
mehhh....

um, excuse me... sorry, I think I accidentally associated DX with D3... heh... Uh, Doom3 is rendered in OpenGL paths, right?

Right, hence the descriptive term "DX class" ;)

StealthHawk
06-27-03, 07:25 PM
Originally posted by The Baron
I was under the impression that Doom 3 did not use any shaders, just a different rendering path optimized for different architectures. Meh, might be wrong.

It does use shaders, much in the same way that UT2003 uses shaders. ie, to not much avail :p What I mean by that is AFAIK there are no special effects that you get if you have a card with shaders, you just get extra speed. I'd guess it uses shaders to do the DOT3 bumpmapping, as well as some other stuff.

john19055
06-27-03, 10:16 PM
Then I would go with a TI4600 if you can find one,I have one in my kids computer that has a Celeron 1.3 and it plays Unreal 2 ,UT2003 ,GR , NFSHS2 great with no problems at decent frame rate.