Introduction

Welcome back and thanks for joining us for another edition of our video card price guides. If this is your first time here reading any of our price guides, you'll see that we not only pick out hardware we feel you should consider for your next purchase, but we also like to follow the market trends, to give you an outlook as to what we see happening. We like to rotate the four topics we discuss in every edition, covering CPUs, motherboards, video cards and storage media.

Although we only discuss these four topics in our price guides, our RTPE includes all aspects of computer hardware, all the way from LCD monitors to desktop and notebook RAM to sound cards. First, if you missed our last price guide, we took a look at the latest happenings in the motherboard marketplace. Secondly, you'll also notice that the RTPE's speed has picked up significantly and is much more enjoyable to use due to the overhaul we had a few months back. We're still working on getting even better performance in the future and we also do our best to keep it up to date with the latest hardware out in the market.

As always, we like to begin our video card price guides with the ultra high-end solutions and go all the way through the high-end, mid-range and end with the low-end products. Note that when we talk about market segments, we are primarily concerned with price and positioning rather than performance. This is why we generally don't recommend the high-end market right now for video cards, as in many instances you get better price/performance from either a slightly more expensive card or cheaper card. As always, if you can find a better deal than any of the ones mentioned we have listed here, so much the better for you. These articles are only a snapshot in time and we don't track every vendor on the internet.

There are many cards to cover, and we'll do our best to get to them all, but please do feel free to leave us any comments or suggestions in the comment section below or send us an e-mail at the e-mail address above. The feedback we receive is always invaluable and helps improve our guides for the best. Let's get started with the ultra high-end video cards...

Ultra High-End Graphics
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  • JarredWalton - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    Actually, I think what they wanted was to have each table sorted by price, not just grouping similar cards together. This is an often requested feature, and our pricing engine people are aware of it. Unfortunately, there are many factors that come into play with adding this feature to the tables that get generated. Hopefully we can get that one of these days -- along with better searching capability (like the ability to search for regular expressions rather than specific strings). Her Reply
  • rrcn - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    Ah yes, I forgot to address that portion of their request.

    However, for the time being, if you go to our RTPE and http://labs.anandtech.com/cats.php">browse by category, you can sort by prices after you select which card you're looking at. This goes for all other products, not just video cards. =) Hope this helps.
    Reply
  • Josh7289 - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    You mentioned the X1900GT certainly packing a punch, but what kind of a punch does it pack? At $260 after rebate, it is priced identically to the 7900GT, so I'm curious as to specifically how it performs compared to other cards in its price range, like the 7900GT.

    Also, for $140 after rebate, the X850XT is about the same price as the 7600GT, maybe a little cheaper, so I'd like to know how that card also performs similar to others in its price range, like the 7600GT.

    Thanks ;)
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    I've updated the text on page 3 to reflect this information. The 7900 GT could easily be classified as a high-end card, but the search string (GeForce 7900 GT) also picks up the GTX cards, so we just put them all on the ultra high-end page. Reply
  • bobbyto34 - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    It's not the same generation. The X850 are not SM 3.0 compatible. Some effects won't be avalaible.
    In some games, you'll have the same amount of fps, but you wont have the same graphical effects.

    I would surely choose the 7600GT because :
    - Less heat and lower power consumption
    - Special AA filter ( better filtering on trees).
    - Lower impact of HDR
    - SLI (??) : I'm not fan of SLI, because it would cost more than a 7900GT, for the same performance.
    Reply
  • Dfere - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    This is a truly buggy situation. Windows does not pick it up as a Sapphire using drivers provided by Sapphire, o/c utility will not install. I can remove drivers with ATI uninstaller but then XP will not allow for install of updated generic catalyst drivers. I haven't seen these types of issues since the days of the S/B 32 wavetable era. I am way past what Newegg will consider for an RMA. It could be my intel mb. Anybody wanna buy a x1800gGTO? Reply
  • imaheadcase - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    "you should know that the support is unofficial, meaning you can't complain to NVIDIA if things don't work right. "

    Um yes you can complain, its nice nvidia sells a graphics card $500-600 that does not include that. lol I guess if your a sucker to buy one you would also justify any complaint that came with it..

    Seems to be a trend in hardware, release said great product, drivers 6 months later that work right. (Creative anyone?) :P
    Reply
  • Eric2203 - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    quote:

    "you should know that the support is unofficial, meaning you can't complain to NVIDIA if things don't work right. "

    Um yes you can complain, its nice nvidia sells a graphics card $500-600 that does not include that. lol I guess if your a sucker to buy one you would also justify any complaint that came with it..

    Seems to be a trend in hardware, release said great product, drivers 6 months later that work right. (Creative anyone?) :P


    And since when is nvidia selling a quad-SLI system ? They're not. So no, you have no room to complain. The product that is being sold has working drivers, no room to complain.
    Reply
  • bobbyto34 - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    Nvidia driver are not updated as quickly as it used to be.
    There is nearly 2/3 months between graphic cards drivers OFFICIAL update.
    For chipset driver, it's nearly yearly updates !!!
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Wednesday, July 12, 2006 - link

    The *Quad SLI* support is unofficial. The only official Quad SLI support will come through system vendors (Falcon Northwest, Dell, Alienware, etc.) that ship the system. There are a lot of things that need to be done to guarantee a stable QSLI setup, so NVIDIA allows you to try it, but you're on your own as far as support goes. Now they just need to take the next step and give unofficial support for SLI on non-NVIDIA chipsets.... Reply

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