Final Round

What everything comes down to is the price. We are seeing the TurboCache parts coming in at between $59 and $80 for the range of cards that we tested here. While it isn't as widely available yet, the ATI HyperMemory parts are coming in at between $53 and $75. It is absolutely important to realize that we tested the cheapest of the X300 HyperMemory cards here, the 32MB onboard model. With this card coming in at under $60, there is no reason to choose the 16MB TC part over the ATI solution unless vendors can get the prices down near $50.

The 128MB onboard X300 HyperMemory part should perform significantly better than what we are seeing here, and we suspect that the price point puts it in good competition with the higher end TurboCache parts. But we will have to wait until we have hardware for testing before we can confirm this suspicion. Regardless, the small price difference for the extra 96MB of onboard RAM makes the more expensive ATI part a very interesting option.

We really can't see much reason to recommend the 64MB TurboCache part. Unless one of the vendors comes out with a solution that runs the memory at 700MHz or more, there's really no advantage to the 32MB onboard part (in fact, there is a disadvantage at the speeds that we tested). We really can't see any reason for the most expensive part that we tested to cost as much as it does.

For well-rounded performance, the 32MB 64-bit TurboCache part is our pick. Of course, that may change when we look at the 128MB HyperMemory card depending on performance and price at the time.

Business customers who want some added 3D functionality and possibly the ability to play games at the absolute lowest cost will not be disappointed with the 32MB onboard ATI X300 SE HyperMemory solution. If the budget is tight, this is definitely a workable part.

For those who will be buying in volume, even a single dollar counts in the grand scheme of things. With the low prices of these cards, we can expect a lot of competition between vendors in the high volume market. It will take quite a lot for NVIDIA and ATI to build up enough steam to surpass Intel in the graphics solution volume department, but perhaps upcoming integrated graphics solutions from ATI and NVIDIA will be as compelling as these parts show value products can be.

Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory Performance
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  • OrSin - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    Why test $60 video cards on systems with the highend chips and memory. No one test goodyear tires on ferrari. I want to see these test ran on 2800 CPU and kinmax memory. As it stands this a waste to me.

    Also why not test some on board cards to these.
    To see if its even worth upgrade the Intel ,ATI, or NV solution to these.

  • stevty2889 - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    What the heck? The system it was tested on was:
    Microsoft Windows XP SP2
    ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe
    AMD Athlon FX-53
    1GB OCZ PC3200 @ 2:2:2:9
    Seagate 7200.7 HD
    OCZ Powerstream 600W PS

    Nobody that buy's these cards is going to be running on a system like that..should have been tested with a sempron, or 2.8ghz P4/A64 2800+ type setup instead..
  • DerekWilson - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    Sorry about leaving off the machine specs -- I've updated the article.

    Actually, that was quite an oversight as the system these cards are run in is very important to note when looking at the numbers.

    Marlin1975, InuYasha is correct -- the 32MB card out performed the 64MB part in almost every test. It wasn't until we upped the resolution to unplayable degrees that the 64MB part was able to make up the difference.
  • bob661 - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    Does anyone know what motherboard and how much ram was used in their test system?
  • CrystalBay - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    #3 I was wondering the same thing myself, hmmm.
  • InuYasha - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    #4 the 32MB and 64MB results are not backward.

    if i remember correctly from HOCP, the 32MB has faster memory and that makes a huge difference than the amount of memory.
  • Icehawk - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    I don't see the machine specs anywhere either? I'm curious if these were tested on the "standard" uber-machine or tested on what kind of PC someone buying these would actually have. Somehow, by the #s generated I think this was on the uber-machine. While interesting to see ultimate performance I think end-users would also be served by showing more realistic performance #s.

    A couple of minor typos ;)
  • Marlin1975 - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    OK I think it is a mis-tpe, not the graohs that are wrong on page 7...

    "Unreal Tournament 2004 shows our 32MB HyperMemory performing on par with the 64MB TurboCache part in the middle of the pack. The 16 and 32 MB TC cards round out the bottom and top of the pack respectively."
  • gimpsoft - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    be alot better if it could be the other way around taking video card memory and using it for windows then ill really pay for it lol letting video card borrow system memory bad idea for the future

    anyways that's just me
  • Marlin1975 - Thursday, May 12, 2005 - link

    Do you have the 32mb and 64mb cards backwards?

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