First top-end card I purchased was the ASUS V9980 Ultra
, a single-slot GFFX5950Ultra. Bought it from Monarchcomputers.com for like $405 shipped, then kicked my self cause for $35 more I could have had the 9800XT.
Kicked myself yet again cause like a few months later the GF6800GT was released at about the same price.
Loved the card though. Had an ASUS V8170DDR, which I then upgraded to a Ti4400 I yanked from a Dell, then from that 4400 to the 5950U. Was a mammoth jump across the board in regards to performance. The GF4s struggled with (at that time) newer titles such as CoD while the 5950 blew through those games.
Man, I kinda' miss those days.
So much more excitement in the enthusiast realm. Didn't seem like it was such a niche market back then.