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Cheap New GeForce 8800 GT Challenges $400 Cards

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the like-fanless-music-to-my-ears dept.

402

J. Dzhugashvili writes "What would you say to a video card that performs like a $400 GeForce 8800 GTS for $200-250? Say hello to the GeForce 8800 GT. The Tech Report has tested the new mid-range wonder in Crysis, Unreal Tournament 3, Team Fortress 2, and BioShock. It found that the card keeps up with its $400 big brother overall while drawing significantly less power and — here's the kicker — generating slightly less noise."

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SAY NO to SLASHDOT'S LAME FILTER (-1, Flamebait)

gsonic (885510) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159109)

F1R$T P0$T!!!!!11111111111... muwhahahahahaha F. U slashdot lame filter.

Re:SAY NO to SLASHDOT'S LAME FILTER (-1, Offtopic)

Dishevel (1105119) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159143)

We are all I am sure Highly impressed by you ability to type. (almost) I hope that someday you can actually accomplish something in your life you can be proud of. Really.

Re:SAY NO to SLASHDOT'S LAME FILTER (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159409)

We are all I am sure Highly impressed by you ability to type. (almost) I hope that someday you can actually accomplish something in your life you can be proud of. Really. We are all*,* I am sure*,**h*ighly impressed by you*r* ability to type. (*A*lmost)I hope that someday you can actually accomplish something in your life you can be proud of. Really.

$200-250 is NOT cheap! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159135)

$200-250 is a crazy amount to pay for a video card. $400 is insanely expensive. How much disposable income to you have, anyways?

You want to impress me? Show me a $50-100 video card that can perform as well as a $200. $50 falls into something I call 'cheap'.

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (5, Insightful)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159395)

All of today's $100 cards perform better than cards from 5 years ago. Happy?

The same complaint you've just made can be made for -all- computer components. The high-end ($400) stuff -is- insanely expensive, and only for the true die-hard hobbyists. The hobbyist ($200) stuff is for those that want to enjoy the sport, but can't afford to throw their money away. And the cheap stuff ($100) is for those that don't really care and the low-end stuff is good enough.

If you're not a gamer, you have -no- reason to buy a card at all. The onboard video is more than good enough. (I use an onboard Intel GMA 3000 on my Kubuntu box and it runs Compiz better than my ATI at work.)

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (-1, Flamebait)

iknownuttin (1099999) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159497)

The hobbyist ($200) stuff is for those that want to enjoy the sport,...

Sport?!? LOL!

Soooo, how do folks train for this 'sport'? Is there any weights involved? What about overtrain? If you overtrain, how much rest do you need?

Diet: Doritoes, potato chips, McDonalds, Pizza...

Energy drinks: Coke, Pepsi, beer?

God! That killed me! "Sport"!

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (4, Insightful)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159621)

No weights involved, however it is not uncommon for professional gaming teams to hire ex-drill instructors.

It may seem simple, and is not a "sport" in the sense that it doesn't require physical stamina, however in the pro leagues it does require a significant amount of time to train. How do you train with a video game? Getting the timing of a weapon down just right in CS...knowing EXACTLY what units to use and where to use them depending on the type of attack/types of units your opponent is using...you get the idea. Basically, it requires you to know the game better than the people that made it. Not only that, but you must have the dexterity in your fingers to be able to control as well as possible (it is also not uncommon for pro gamers to play some form of instrument that requires dexterity, such as Saxophone or Guitar.)

Try playing SSBM or CS:S against someone who regularly plays in tournaments and trains on a daily basis...see how long you last.

And while you are laughing at them for being nerds, they are making a shitload of money for doing what essentially amounts to playing games for a living.

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159707)

We're not laughing at them; we're laughing at you.

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159711)

"...for doing what essentially amounts to wasting their lives."

There, fixed that for ya.

Money, nerds whatever. (-1, Troll)

iknownuttin (1099999) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159771)

And while you are laughing at them for being nerds, they are making a shitload of money for doing what essentially amounts to playing games for a living.

I wasn't laughing at them. I was laughing at calling it a "sport" - I laugh the same way at golfers who call their game a 'sport'(Tiger Woods makes more taking a dump than all video sportsman combined). At least the golfers have to walk - a little.

I know women who make a shitload of money taking off their clohes - I pity them.

Making a lot of money doesn't necessarily make the occupation enviable, respected or even desired.

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159543)

It depends. With high cpu/memory stuff, I've found the interface of a machine can get extremely unresponsive with i945 onboard chipsets. I haven't tried any of the ?3x00 chipsets by intel yet, so I don't know how far across the board this goes.

But when I was doing data analysis on a few genomes, I would have killed for *any* discrete graphics card. In the end, I got an ancient PCI card and snuck it in the box when no one was looking. By specs, it couldn't compete with the onboard video, but I didn't get all the delays.

*shrug* I've noticed the issue on Windows, Linux (to a lesser extent) and FreeBSD (to a much lesser extent), so I suspect it has more to do with the drivers. Still good card + bad drivers + no better drivers = not a good card as far as the user experience goes.

And (3, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159675)

The people who buy lower end should be real thankful there is a high end. That's where the lower end comes from. nVidia can afford to sell the 8600 for $100 precisely because they paid the R&D costs with the expensive 8800s. The lower end is as cheap and as good as it is precisely because there's a high end.

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (1)

angle_slam (623817) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159727)

All of today's $100 cards perform better than cards from 5 years ago. Happy? Five years ago? Try two. Today's $100 card (Nvidia 7600GS) performs better than my $200 card from two years ago (Nvidia 6600 GT). The top card of two-three years ago was the 6800, and the 7600 performs better in some benchmarks.

Re:$200-250 is NOT cheap! (5, Insightful)

krunk7 (748055) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159857)

I spend 250 dollars for a night out at a nice restaurant with my wife, especially if a nice bottle of wine is included.

Wh wouldn't I spend this on a one time purchase that will provide hours and hours of entertainment for up to 1.5 years?

Kicker (3, Insightful)

HateBreeder (656491) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159141)

I would say the kicker is that it draws significantly less power, rather than producing little noise.

Obviously, the fan is making the noise, not the chip.
I bet you could probably find a 8800GTX with some high-end silent cooling rig.

Re:Kicker (4, Interesting)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159245)

Half the price and almost the same frame rate is irrelevent?

Weird.

Re:Kicker (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159467)

I've been happy with performance for a while... I'm starting to look at cooler and more energy efficient. So yeah, for some of us, the 'kicker' is indeed the noise.

Re:Kicker (1)

etymxris (121288) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159597)

Power draw is part of the price. Compare to buying a car that's half the price of the previous model and has twice the mpg.

Works even less on Linux (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159651)

Linux is such a piece of shit... Fuck you Linus! Linux STINKS!

Help me understand. (3, Interesting)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159157)

I can understand if this card were released by a competitor, but why would Nvidia release a card that competes with their top of the line at such a low price? Who wouldn't want the cheaper card?

The only thing I can think of is that the production costs were higher for the GTS, resulting in less profit per card...

Can anyone clue me in?

Re:Help me understand. (3, Interesting)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159325)

The GTS was to get money from early adopters, and remains on the market to squeeze money out of people who make purchasing decisions based on emotional ("I have the best!") rather than financial considerations. Everyone other serious game will henceforth buy the GT.

Re:Help me understand. (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159371)

Everyone other serious game will henceforth buy the GT.
Should say: Every other serious gamer will..

Re:Help me understand. (5, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159339)

Because the "competitor" is two weeks away from a major new product launch.

Re:Help me understand. (2, Insightful)

MarcoAtWork (28889) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159355)

but why would Nvidia release a card that competes with their top of the line at such a low price?


do you really think that the 8800gtx will still be nvidia's top-of-the-line card come Christmas?

Re:Help me understand. (2, Interesting)

TellarHK (159748) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159573)

I would have initially assumed that nVidia, fearing a threat from ATI, would have taken a different route to try and get the big bucks. Drop the price on existing cards by a hundred bucks or so, use the NV92 used for the 8800GT as the 8850GT in order to differentiate the price features, and charge a premium price for it in the $350 range.

This way, early adopters don't feel like they got screwed into mild feature obsolecense by a card that costs half as much, people wanting the upgrades see more reason to buy the 8850GT because "Hey, it's a xx50 model - new features and still cheaper than the one I already bought!" without the lingering ball-ache of a $150 price drop - and, you've still got cards that devastate the existing ATI lineup with the potential to say "Well, screw ATI, now we're releasing the 8850GTS and GTX with more RAM, more monster cooling and both higher and lower prices." if ATI/AMD comes out with something that actually competes, unlike the 2900HD.

However, I do believe that nVidia is going to take a few pretty big steps in regards to more powerful cards before Christmas. The only real question is how much more power, and how much will they cost? The GTS and GTX models that are out now still dominate and command a high price that's out of reach for a lot of people. Are they just going to drop both the existing models like a hot potato as soon as new ones come out, or multi-tier with them some how?

Re:Help me understand. (1)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159745)

Early adopters are, by definition, screwed into some sort of obsolescence. nVidia knows this, and they don't care because they make racks of sweet cash from them. Don't expect that to change until people stop making stupid purchase decisions.

Re:Help me understand. (2, Interesting)

krelian (525362) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159847)

I bought a 8800 GTS 320MB about year after it came out, I don't consider it being an early adopter. Now, Nvidia brings a better card for a lower price. That's very different from the usual price drop on older cards.

Re:Help me understand. (2, Informative)

TellarHK (159748) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159443)

That's a really good question. The GTS production costs were certainly higher, as it's a dual-slot card that uses more components, material and a larger die size, but as a GTS 640MB owner I'm feeling somewhat kicked in the sac. Yes, I'm fully aware that newer cards come out every few months, but it seems a little bit of a slap in the face when something comes out cheaper, arguably faster, and more manageable than your $400 piece of gear -without- a credible marketplace threat.

It's hard to imagine they're more per unit on the GT than the GTS, but sales volume will definitely make up for any shortcomings in that area. I have to hope that there's still some compelling reason why a user might decide to buy a GTS instead of a pair of GT's for SLI mode, particularly while motherboard support for PCIe's latest version has yet to really penetrate the market. I -think- my X38 based board has it, but since it's not an nVidia board and they haven't opened SLI up to other makers, it's largely useless.

However, this would be an excellent time for nVidia to start letting Intel use SLI on chipsets. They're going to get steamrolled by ATI in a generation or two if the AMD/ATI partnership continues to open up specifications, release better drivers, and jack up performance.

Re:Help me understand. (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159733)

It's the way of the world with tech. Todays treasure is tomorrows trash...and sometimes tomorrow really is tomorrow, for unfortunates who buy on the eve of a price drop (silly iPhone whiners).

You win some, you lose some, especially when you're buying the top of the line.

Re:Help me understand. (1)

BlowHole666 (1152399) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159449)

Because rather then someone going to ATI to get a new card because someone found a card that is $50 lower then the $400 Nvidia card. Nvidia is competing with itself to get all of the market. Either way you still bought a card from Nvidia so it is not a loss. It is just a gain that may have went to ATI instead.

Who the heck is buying these cards? (2, Insightful)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159171)

Even at 'only' $250, it's that or a Wii. And the Wii is a stable platform, whereas your cutting edge premium card is going to look overpriced and behind the curve tomorrow - ask all the people who just ordered $400 8800 GTS cards how that feels.

Come on, own up: who's buying these console-priced cards, and why?

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

aesiamun (862627) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159191)

Probably those who think that gaming on consoles isn't extreme enough. I'm quite happy keeping my gaming on my consoles only.

half price (1)

reaktor (949798) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159271)

The big news is that a $250 card is just as fast as a $400 card.

Lots of video/graphics/animation pros need high end video cards too. Video cards are not just for playing games.

Re:half price (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159297)

Lots of video/graphics/animation pros need high end video cards too.

Can you outline why? What are the concrete benefits of a 8800 GTS over an 8800 GT for any of those users?

Re:half price (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159729)

the ONLY video editing system that needs anything but a low end card is final Cut. nothing else uses the card for rendering effects. so Video professionals needing a high end 3d card is not true, not even the high end AVID uses a high end 3d video card for anything. Latest Avid came with a 4 head MATROX card. no high end 3d there.

Supposedly the next version of After Effects will use it to demo effects but does not use it for rendering the real thing that will be broadcast.

Now Graphics. that one is plain funny, it will not make photoshop any faster than the $19.95 el cheapo card that has enough ram to do the resolutions I want. Short of 3d work, I have yet to see Photoshop even take advantage of any video hardware.

Animation... only for rough preview. Rendering is done with pure horsepower and math not the video cards.

Re:half price (2, Informative)

Endo13 (1000782) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159357)

Actually, the 8800 cards are just for playing games. Really. video/graphics/animation pros get something like this [newegg.com] or a FireGL [newegg.com] .

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159279)

Come on, own up: who's buying these console-priced cards, and why?
Because I like to play new games on a PC that can do a lot of other things too, and the game communities I am in mostly play PC games.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159287)

Come on, own up: who's buying these console-priced cards, and why?

Same people who stood in line the first day to plunk down $699 on an iPhone.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

tkdtaylor (1039822) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159649)

Mac users can upgrade their video cards?

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159735)

Yes. [willitblend.com]

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (2, Informative)

werdnam (1008591) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159303)

I can't tell whether you actually want an answer or not, but I'll bite: The set of games for the Wii and the set of games for the PC are not the same set. Therefore, if you want good performance on a game that is exclusive to the PC (or, even if it's not exclusive, you prefer the PC control scheme, or the fact that PC graphics can outdo those on a console (especially the Wii)), then you need a decent graphics card.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159319)

Come on, own up: who's buying these console-priced cards, and why?

I buy video cards and computers for gaming because the console hasn't tackled my kind of game - at least not well yet - the MMORPG. Till then, it's computer gaming for me.
(and besides, the computer hardware doubles as a development platform - I do engineering programming and hardware-accelerated visualization. That card comes in handy. I really can't do that on a Wii)

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (2, Insightful)

Mantrid (250133) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159383)

Because some people want to play more than mini-games and Mario?

I am! (1)

Diablerie (195323) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159385)

I buy a high-end video card when I upgrade my PC every 2 years or so.

Why? Because I enjoy PC gaming, and I want to have a great experience with it. I have friends with various consoles, and my brother has a Wii that I can theoretically borrow at any time, but I just plain prefer games on the PC.

I think of it as a bit of a luxury hobby. Some people spend thousands of dollars on hockey tickets or high-end car parts. What's wrong with spending a few hundred bucks on computer equipment?

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (4, Insightful)

king-manic (409855) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159391)

Even at 'only' $250, it's that or a Wii. And the Wii is a stable platform, whereas your cutting edge premium card is going to look overpriced and behind the curve tomorrow - ask all the people who just ordered $400 8800 GTS cards how that feels.

Come on, own up: who's buying these console-priced cards, and why?
It's a question of what you enjoy. My rig is a year old and runs all the latest game at "medium" settings very well. FPS are the only ones that require savagely expensive systems. Zelda/Wii sports/Resident evil 4 have provided less fun then warcraft 3. I spend more time in oblivion then in those 3 as well. The wii is a social console. It's great for company sort of ho hum solo. If it's not your then it isn't that valuable to you at any price.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

kc2keo (694222) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159519)

Not I!
Isn't playing pacman and tetris enough?!

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Kamots (321174) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159411)

I've got a 8800 GTS 640 (picked it up for $315 shipped though...) that I was thinking of swapping out for a GTX (although I've been thinking for the last few days... maybe I'll just see if I can't sell my GTS and pick up a GT, pocket $50-100... and wait for the GTX replacement card)

Once you've got a decent system together (mine's based around a mildly OCed e6750), then you've got to ask yourself if you'd rather pay the $200-400 for a console, or for a video card to turn your computer into a better gaming system than said console. As there's a lot of non-gaming applications that you'll want a decent speed processor for, this is a situation that quite a lot of people are in. Hell, my dad's looking at putting together a c2d system... and he's hardly the gamer type.

Now, as to picking up a 360 or something instead? Why? With my GTS I'm running Oblivion at 1600x1200 with all eye-candy at max and 4x AA with nice framerates. Looks way nicer than it would on the 360. Most of the 360 games that I've seen have horrible AA and haven't really impressed me... at least with a PC I can adjust settings so that I get the image quality/frame rate that's works for me.

Now all that said, I've got a Wii. But then, unlike the 360, it's not simply a repackaged low-end gaming PC... they're doing something new that my PC won't. :)

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

etymxris (121288) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159473)

Once you've got a decent system together..., then you've got to ask yourself if you'd rather pay the $200-400 for a console, or for a video card to turn your computer into a better gaming system than said console. As there's a lot of non-gaming applications that you'll want a decent speed processor for, this is a situation that quite a lot of people are in.
This is pretty much what I was going to say. A $200+ video card added to a decent system is going to look and perform much better than any console. In addition, the PC platform is more open. Last I checked, user created mods and maps didn't work too well with consoles.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

TellarHK (159748) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159677)

I've gotta disagree, as someone that really dislikes the MS Juggernaut(tm) that the 360 is just a repackaged PC. It -is- a multi-core PPC based box, after all, using a custom video chip that may be based on but not completely copied from a PC design. As far as gaming systems go - and I have all three of the current generation's machines, I really have a lot of respect for what Microsoft's done with the 360. Sony reached too far too fast and too arrogantly, the Wii has great potential and innovation but really -is- hampered by hardware limitations, but the 360 seems to have struck a decent balance.

So far, I have about 20 games for the 360, about 5 for the Wii and a whopping 0 for the PS3. Though that will change with Rock Band, because I'm hopeful that Sony might make the microtransactions for songs less expensive or at least on par - and Microsoft really screwed the pooch on wireless controllers.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159451)

The kind of PC builders who enjoy their system through their games, rather than their games through their system. It's about pushing the technical envelope. Kind of like audiophiles, but with technical competence and objective benchmarking tools.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159811)

Kind of like audiophiles, but with technical competence and objective benchmarking tools.

I dunno, I always thought the "max res, max AA, max framerate" crowd was more akin to dB drag racers [wikipedia.org] than audiophiles.

Huh. That's a good phrase: "FPS drag racers"

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (2, Insightful)

m4g02 (541882) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159485)

Even at 'only' $250, it's that or a Wii. And the Wii is a stable platform, whereas your cutting edge premium card is going to look overpriced and behind the curve tomorrow

Don't get me wrong, Wii is a nice little console, but it looked behind the curve in its launch date, and it looks behind the curve today. I don't understand why fanboys have to troll everything; we are comparing PC video cards here, why are you talking about the Wii?

A year ago I bought this laptop with a GeForce 7900 and have been playing Oblivion, Bioshock and Team Fortress 2, this games wouls never run on the Wii; it looks great, have high FPS, and it's one year old. You are just trolling.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159713)

Because even Will Wright says that the Wii is the only next generation console [slashdot.org] .

What makes it next generation isn't the power, it is the usability. I still play more games on my computer (P4ht/3.2ghz w/7600gt) than I do the Wii, but the CONTROL on the Wii, and the controllers, are absolutely the best. The Wii isn't more powerful than even my old computer, but the gaming EXPERIENCE is much better.

As an old fart who games a fair amount, I would say that the games on PC are more realistic, but playing on the Wii is actually more fun. Look better? No, just more fun.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159501)

I don't see your point. That's like asking who's buying $25,000 cars when you can buy a $18,000 car. $250 is the price you pay to play games on a PC at 1600x1200 or above. Actually, prior to that it was $300 or even higher if you have a 30" monitor. The Wii is a different product, not sure why you would compare the two. The comparison is meaningless.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

immcintosh (1089551) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159513)

Well, I would say that those who prefer gaming on a PC and don't want a Wii or any other console (or perhaps already have them) are buying these cards. Really it's apples to oranges, unless the Wii can execute x86 instructions and I haven't heard about it.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

imsabbel (611519) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159545)

Counter question:
Who is buying Wii-Priced games anyway?

If i buy one game a month, the card will have paid for itself.

Not to mention that for Wii-like games, intel integrated graphics would be plenty.

Can you Luddites find a new site please? (5, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159547)

Seriously, what is it with the technology haters on Slashdot? This is a tech site and yes, there are people out there whole like having cutting edge tech for various reasons. Maybe they are just gamers with lots of money. Maybe they like having graphics that totally stomps on anything a Wii can do. Maybe they have a high end PC anyhow for other work, and as such a good card is worth it. Maybe the games they want to play are only for computer (like say World of Warcraft). Maybe they don't game, maybe they use them for 3D visualization like, say research with insects (just helped a professor at work buy one for that reason). Maybe they use them for GPGPU related things.

Quit hating just because you can't afford the newest toys. If someone can and if that's what they want, then great. You should be happy because guess what? That's where the Wii graphics come from. Lower end graphics come from higher end graphics. It costs a lot of money to develop new technology like this, and the high end is where the development cost gets reimbursed. You get the cheap, good graphics in the Wii precisely because ATi has done so much high end development and it has filtered down.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159551)

I have an 8800 GTS and a Wii. Why? Because the former kicks ass in 1920x1200 playing games like Oblivion, World in Conflict etc. while the Wii is just plain old fun with decent graphics. If you want to talk about "the curve", the Wii is way behind it today. But I forgive it for that, though if there was a WiiHD at PS3 prices I'd buy it but I realize I'm in a minority there. The Wii is definately best for games that are supposed to look cartoonish like all the Mario games, Zelda etc., I got FIFA08 and it could mostly definately benefit from HD. YMMV.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159579)

I just bought a Dell XPS in a package deal that included a high-end graphics card. I don't own a console or play console games because I hate the controllers, the resulting UI, and I don't usually play the kinds of games that consoles offer (and first person shooters are far superior on a PC with a mouse to aim with). So, the console "option" is irrelevant to me. If I can play my games with the graphics settings cranked and see no performance loss, and I know my system will be cutting edge for years, then I'm happy.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

mcpkaaos (449561) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159583)

Disclaimer: I am a FPS player.

Come on, own up: who's buying these console-priced cards, and why?

Simply stated, lesser cards will not drive high resolution displays (1600, 1920, etc) at high, stable frame rates without washing out the visuals by turning features off or down.

Lots of people (myself included) get a huge amount of entertainment from PC gaming. This level of entertainment is often related to the performance of the machine. If you are crawling along Oblivion (just as an example) at 20 fps, you are not going to experience the game as intended and probably will not enjoy it very much. Online, the lack of performance translates (with almost absolute certainty) to getting your ass handed to you repeatedly. So, we fork over the cash for pricey hardware hoping it will improve our experience by improving the performance (of both the machine and ourselves).

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159873)

>> Lots of people (myself included) get a huge amount of entertainment from PC gaming.

<jest>
Man, you sound like a person that would waste $50 a month for cable modem when you can get perfectly good internet over the phone line for less than $10. Or might spend $20,000 on a car when you can take the bus for $1. Or pay $4 for a drink at the nightclub when you just buy a six pack and stay at home. Whats next? Blowing money to eat at a restaurant when you could have just made a peanut butter sandwich at home? Foolish! Foolish I say!

Everyone knows that it is just plain stupid to spend money on something you enjoy.
</jest>

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Dr. Eggman (932300) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159615)

I bought an NVidia 8800 GTX at $500. I did it because it seems like the best choice for my overall design, the total machine (not including parts I scavanged off my old system) was $1300. Sure, its much more than subsidized consoles, but I'm ok with that. My current machine was custom built and assembled by myself because I like to build things (also, I'm a control freak.) I have a Wii and its fun, but it feels like I truely own my PC. Anyways, back to the design, the specifications are designed for flexable modification with little or no upgrades planned until approximatly 2012. By that time, I expect I will be back playing games at medium and low settings (Crysis is currently a breeze,) and thanks to SLI ready motherboard, by that time or maybe before, I should be able to find a $25 or cheaper 8800 GTX to pop on and hold it out longer. By that time, I expect quad core to be out, but I betting on atleast one CPU line after the Core 2 Quads to support the LGA 775 socket, which I plan to replace at a relativly cheap price around the same time. Again, it'll be an older system, upgrading to older parts, but it'll still be my system, my hobby, my enjoyment.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

TellarHK (159748) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159819)

No upgrades until 2012? For a $1300 system using a single GTX? No, that's not going to happen. Within 2 years there will be games available, that you'll probably want, which will bring that machine to its knees. How do I know this? I played the Crysis demo on an C2D E6420 overclocked to 3Ghz with a single 8800GTS 640M card last night. With all the spiffy detail turned on (Under DX10) I got something close to 20fps at best, at 1680x1050. With monitor resolutions expected to increase, transistor counts on silicon continuing to take leaps and bounds, I -know- that my card has about 2 years of serving me at -best- before something vastly cheaper and far superior comes out... And I got about six months before something almost meeting those criteria hit.

My current system is planned to last until about midyear 2008 without any major upgrades, but the motherboard should carry me through to the end of LGA775's lifespan at least. I'll probably get a new CPU first, then a new video card, and probably do incremental upgrades until the end of LGA775 before I migrate to the next big thing.

It's really impossible to build a machine today that'll last five years - hence, why I -also- get the consoles. It's not even really a matter of being a die-hard gamer, it's just prioritizing entertainment options and trying to hit the peaks on the price-performance curve when you can.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

tknd (979052) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159687)

I bought a $300 video card in the past. And I bought a Wii. So I guess I fit both groups.

But the thing is that I bought that $300 video card 3 years ago and I still use it today. I expect to get another year of life out of it so that would bring service to 4 years. If I had not bought the video card, I probably would have found myself upgrading multiple times over those years. That would probably mean a $100 or more card at the same time I bought the $300 card and another investment about a year and a half later. The problem is that between those years AGP died and PCI-E came in. So the second upgrade would have been more costly as I'd have to replace multiple parts in addition to the video card.

Now I still can't play the latest games at all, but I could play the games I found fun with acceptable to good performance levels. I immediately learned that the eye candy isn't much worth it if the game play isn't there, but apparently game companies have no sense of this and keep moving in the direction of graphics instead.

The nice thing about this card is it performs just as fast as the more expensive versions, nVidia has priced it well ($200 to $250), and power consumption actually went down. In one sense you could say this is just like the iphone price cut except a whole lot better because you're actually getting better product for your needs.

Re:Who the heck is buying these cards? (1)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159821)

I bought a $350 8800 GTS six months ago. Why? Because I wanted to play PC games. The PC gives you a significantly different experience than the Wii does. And if you ask me, the video card was the better value. Am I upset that Nvidia has released a new card? Of course not. Only a fool would expect a piece of technology to stay on the cutting edge for very long these days (I'm looking at you, iPhone early adopters).

mac version? (1)

arazor (55656) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159187)

I hope they make a mac version of this. I want to replace the 7300 in my mac pro but the ATI isn't enough of a performance upgrade.

Cheap my ass (1)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159211)

Show me a video card that is sub 3-digit in price. No way am I going to spend $200 on a video card.

Re:Cheap my ass (1, Offtopic)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159353)

geforce 6800. A good card for its time, still serves me well in one of my home gaming machines.

Re:Cheap my ass (1)

angle_slam (623817) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159681)

Check out this article on The Best Gaming Graphics Cards for the Money [tomshardware.com] . It lists the best card in each price range, including sub $100.

FWIW, the reccomended $100 card performs better than my card that cost $200 two years ago (6600 GT).

Yup (4, Funny)

dazedNconfuzed (154242) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159213)

New incarnation of given technology cheaper than older incarnation of same technology, film at 11...

Re:Yup (2, Interesting)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159541)

The news is that this is a leap forward in price/performance. There have only been a few comparable video card releases in history. Typically, it goes "you pay $500 for a high end card, then it goes to $450, then $400, etc...". This is a card that costs $250 (or less) that is almost as fast as a card that costs $400 or more.

In other words, if you play PC games at 1600x1200 or above, this is the only choice that you really have now - nothing else makes sense unless you're playing on a 30" monitor or want to throw away money.

Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (2, Informative)

antdude (79039) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159235)

OK. After playing Crysis single player demo, I only got 9-10 FPS average (0 FPS minimum!) with high settings (I refuse to go lower, did turn off motion blur which drove me nuts) according to the two batch benchmark files. I just upgraded my system last December 2006 too! That video card was expensive (almost 300 bucks) enough! :(

My current computer specifications can be found here:
http://alpha.zimage.com/~ant/antfarm/about/computers.txt [zimage.com] (I do not like to and want to OC; doesn't help when I have physical disabilities since I can't open my case to reset CMOS, fiddle with the hardwares, etc.). I use the latest NVIDIA drivers (including betas), 1280x1024 native resolution on my 19" LCD monitor (helps to use lower native resolutions since I don't need larger one :)), no FSAA if FPS is needed, and 16X anisotropic (no anisostropic didn't even help for Crysis).

Is it worth getting a newer video card (e.g., 8800) to help the newer games' FPS like Crysis, World in Conflict, C&C3 (not too choppy like the first two), etc.? I do not want to upgrade my motherboard, CPU, RAM, etc. at this time. I am not sure where's the bottleneck is. Video card? My CPU? Something else?

Thank you in advance. :)

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (1)

HateBreeder (656491) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159283)

Your video card is probably the bottleneck.

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159663)

Or his brain. Refusing to run at anything less than high settings is ridiculous. It's a game; how much do you really suffer by having the settings lower on something like Crysis?

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159401)

You refuse to lower the settings when you're getting FPS in the single digits? I think that's a clear case of PEBKAC.

BTW, World in Conflict runs perfectly on my 6800, you just have to lower the details a bit. I think C&C3 even runs at high detail on that card. Seriously, those two aren't very demanding. If you want a framerate killer try Supreme Commander.

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159475)

But the pretty graphics and colors! Lowering quality look bad. I already turned off volumetric. I can live without FSAA. I can't figure how to lower the anisotropic in the game. I even disabled via NVIDIA's driver (no changes in Crysis).

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (1)

oddfox (685475) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159697)

Crysis might not be very pretty on Lowest settings here on my Radeon X800GTO, but it's definitely nice to be able to have a steady and very playable framerate at my native 1440x900 resolution. Have you even tried Medium? Not so pretty game I can actually play is much more entertaining than slideshow of amazing renders I can't really do a whole lot with comfortably. Really my main complaint with Lowest settings is that the grass gets in the way more than anything, especially since there's no FSAA/AF that I'm doing in the game. Blocky ugly bushes sprouting up all over the place and making it hard for me to see the enemy.

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159531)

"Fat Fingers" is not a disability, kthx

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159813)

Not funny. I have Nager's Syndrome that consists multiple physical disabilities. :(

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (1)

magarity (164372) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159565)

Why not go SLi with another of your current cards? Unless you're determined to get first generation Dx10 then the 8xxx series isnt yet as cost effective as a pair of 7xxx series.

Re:Worth upgrading my GeForce 7950 on my box? (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159861)

How much more FPS will I get out of that for newer games like Crysis? If it is like 5-10 FPS, then it is not worth it. I am not sure if I have room for another PCIE card in my system and adding more heat will make my system more hotter (my room is like 85 degrees(F) during heat waves so you can see how bad inside the case is; I do have air cirulation in it).

anybody want to buy my ATI X1950XT? (1)

ccgr (612619) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159259)

I'd switch back to Nvidia in a heartbeat!

Re:anybody want to buy my ATI X1950XT? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159343)

ATI's coming out with one that'll be at the same price range, and even better than the 8800 GT - I wouldn't switch over just yet.

Unless you don't feel like waiting another month; which is understandable. It's all about deciding when try buy, since right around the corner there will always be something better.

Maybe so (4, Funny)

jayhawk88 (160512) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159365)

But does the $250 card make people online you will never meet in real life think that your penis is gigantic like the $400 card does?

Re:Maybe so (1)

CompMD (522020) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159633)

Unfortunately it probably doesn't. Frankly, nobody I know (including myself) really cares much about the fact that all of my CAD workstations have Quadro cards (and the old ones have Elsa Gloria cards). However, I'm sure that some of those 1337 gam0r types would shit a brick if they knew what those cost. As I'm sure you know, in Lawrence its fun and easy to have "whose is bigger?" challenges. :)

Re:Maybe so (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159795)

Yeah, i have an SGI Onyx somewhere, a stupidly powerful graphics workstation in it's day...
I also have some Elsa Gloria cards, i got one with an alphastation a few years ago.

Pedestrian.. (1)

msimm (580077) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159833)

Everyone knows $400 cards are Jordache. :_

uhm 250$ is cheap... how old are you guys ? 12? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21159417)

Wow, I cant believe how many people are complaining about 250$. thats nothing.. chump change. good cards are all 500-1000 bux no problem.

if you can get a card that is comparable to a 400$ card in the same GPU line, why wouldn't you ?

and for the guys that want one for 50-100 bux, you obviously know nothing about the computer world. go back to an xbox

Overkill? (2, Interesting)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159445)

I run TF2 in 1680x1050 with a GeForce 6800GS Overclocked-out-of-the-box. Never skips, never gets busy, no artifacts. My processor is a single core Athlon (somewhere in the 3.2 GHz range). 2 GB of memory. It's not a "new" box by any means, but I haven't found a game that doesn't run on full (except FEAR with some of the most advanced features) graphics.

Re:Overkill? (1)

GreenEnvy22 (1046790) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159563)

The Source engine is a pretty good engine, it runs even on hardward of yesteryear.
I have an X2 4200, 2gb, and a x1800, and TF2 runs maxed out just fine.

Crysis runs fine on medium, not so hot on high :)

I even got TF2 running ok on my old athlonxp 2800, with a radeon 9700 AIW, for my cousin to use.

Re:Overkill? (1)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159595)

Of course it's not overkill for some people. TF2 isn't exactly demanding compared to other games. If you're buying a new video card and your budget is $200-$400, this is now the card that you would buy. If you're playing at higher resolutions with eye candy, you need this card for newer and more demanding games.

Re:Overkill? (1)

imsabbel (611519) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159601)

Play the crysis demo.

Then you realize two things:

a) you have seen movies with worse graphics
b) there is no graphic hardware in the world that can enable all details.

Just like in the sweet old times. All those cards running the latest games at 200fps gets boring once in a while...

Re:Overkill? (2, Informative)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159685)

TF2 is a great game, but come on... you can't seriously use it as a benchmark for graphical performance. I doubt you're even running Episode 2 on full settings with that card and still getting decent frame rates. And if you can't find any games that make your graphics card chug, World in Conflict, UT3, COD4, and Crysis all have demos out now. Try running any of those games and then come back and tell us that a 6800GS is all you need with a straight face.

price != quality (1)

ExE122 (954104) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159503)

This is not really all that shocking. "Most expensive" does not necessarily mean "top of the line". There have been tons of benchmarks showing how "slower" and cheaper CPUs synchronize with the bus more efficiantly than some of the overpriced high-clockers do and perform way better. These two cards don't even sound like they're all that different. From the sounds of it, the GTS is the same card as the GT with some fancy fans on it which are less efficient, make more noise, and don't improve performance at all... kinda like when people put a big tailpipe and a spoiler on a Civic.

A better way to save $200 (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159627)

Give me a card that performs like a $200 for zero dollars.

Seriously though, if a $200 card really was like a $400 card in every way that mattered, don't expect the $400 card to stay $400 for long. Either it will come down in price or it will be discontinued.

In Soviet Russia... (0, Offtopic)

ZwJGR (1014973) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159635)

Dzhugashvili, wasn't that the surname of Josef Stalin?

Installing in a Mac Pro? (1)

xjerky (128399) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159715)

How hard would it be to install this on a Pro? I hear that EFI makes this impossible. But if that's the case, why buy a desktop machine that's upgradable if you can't upgrade it?

Expensive in Germany? (1)

Catil (1063380) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159797)

I bought a new system a month ago and waited for this card to retail since then (while playing casual games with my onboard GFX). And now that it's finally there, it costs 259 Euro (~370$) at my prefered store (alternate.de) and I don't find it anywhere else, anyway. Does anyone know where to get that card in Germany for 200-250$ or perhaps a good store outside of Germany that will ship it to me?

Nice looking card (5, Informative)

Emetophobe (878584) | more than 6 years ago | (#21159829)

Here are the main benefits I see with this card:

1. Single slot cooler instead of a dual slot like all the other high end cards made over the last 2 years
2. One 6 pin power connection instead of two like all the other high end G80 cards
3. Power consumption. According to the article (yes I read it), Nvidia rates the power consumption of the 8800GT at 110 watts.
4. Supports PCI Express 2.0 (backwards compatible with PCI Express 1.1)
5. Relatively cheap. I always found $200-300 to be the best price range for a video card (the high end G80 cards on the other hand cost $500-800 [newegg.com] )

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