Replacing an ATI 9800 (yes, a 9800)

Discussion in '3D Hardware, Software & Output Devices' started by Quitch, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. Quitch

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    My dad's ATI 9800 Pro 256MB AGP card has finally given up the ghost and needs replacing. The new card will be joining a Pentium IV 3Ghz and 1GB RAM. My question is simply what AGP cards exist (do they still make them?) that can replace it?

    Bear in mind that the 9800 had a four pin connector as opposed to the six pin cards have these days. Given the machine I'm wondering if there is much pointing getting anything other than the cheapest AGP card available?
     
  2. Mize

    Mize 3dfx Fan
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    There are many AGP cards available on e-tailers. If it's not for gaming then the cheapest makes sense.
     
  3. Quitch

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    It would be used to game, but I don't know how much benefit there would be to buying anything above and beyond the cheapest (which I would assume now would be on part with a 9800) based on the machine's other limitations.

    For example, I believe the 3xxx rnage had AGP cards, though I see now that there was an AGP card in the ATI 4xxx range too (?!), but I've no idea if it's actually worth buying anything that recent for this machine, or even if ATI is the way to go.

    There's also the limit of the power connector and the 300W OEM power supply. For that reason I wouldn't want to stray too far, just for safety's sake.
     
    #3 Quitch, Jan 18, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2010
  4. Zaphod

    Zaphod Remember
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    I put a HD 4650 AGP in an old Athlon XP 2.2 GHz rig a couple of weeks ago. In terms of gaming it's really not worth it at the current prices, but I got it dirt cheap and mostly for H.264. I also have a HD 3850 AGP in an Asrock 4CoreDual-SATA2, and it really needed a Core 2 to stretch it's legs.

    The rest of your dad's setup will be limited by 1GB ram first, the CPU as a close second, and the slow DDR2 on a 4650 a distant third. And the 4650 is really bandwidth limited on any semi-mediocre system today. With another gig of ram and a 4650, you'd probably be able to get a half decent game of the likes of Fallout 3 out of the system, but that's pretty much the limit of it.

    Then there are the 3450 and some 3650 cards that are still around. The first one isn't really fast enough for gaming, even on a P4, and the second one is still pretty bad value vs. the 4650. For one thing, accelerated Flash (if Adobe ever get that working properly and out of beta) would help the longevity of the machine even with a weak CPU.

    On the Nvidia end, it seems only the 6200 is around in AGP. Slow. Not worth it.

    What I'd suggest is that you see if someone can gift you a discarded card. A second hand vanilla GeForce 6800, Radeon X800, or similar shouldn't be too hard to find for (close to) naught. If the PSU has a decent set of connectors, I'd also consider the alternative of spending ~£120 on a 785G motherboard, an AMD Athlon II X2 240, and a couple gigs of bargain basement DDR2.

    If you're still bent on a new AGP card, at ~£55 the aforementioned HD 4650 isn't a horrible choice. You won't really get your moneys worth, but it should work just fine. They either ship with a power dongle or use the old 4-pin connector.
     
    #4 Zaphod, Jan 18, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2010
  5. swaaye

    swaaye Entirely Suboptimal
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    Yeah I'd also suggest digging around among the friends for some leftover AGP relic of some sort. Or hit ebay (or similar) for some cheapo replacement. The modern AGP cards are too expensive, are flakey sometimes (driver and hardware issues), and are wasted on older CPUs anyway.

    A new AMD sys is so cheap that buying a AGP video card for $100 or so is a very significant chunk of the price of a whole new system! A new sys would be a much more tangible improvement too.


    BTW, how did the 9800 die? Is it just artifacting? If that's the case, you should try downclocking it. I've seen 9700s lose their ability to run their stock clocks after years of use. The RAM or RAM controller degrades. If dropping the clocks fixes it you can edit the BIOS and flash it with new clock speeds.
     
    #5 swaaye, Jan 18, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2010
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