Welcome back for another edition of the Price Guides. Not much has changed in the memory arena as prices continue to slowly rise. On the opposite side we are seeing more competitive pricing from both ATI and NVIDIA when it comes to their second-to-last-generation video cards such as the Radeon 9800 series and the GeForceFX 5900's. Both seem to be pushing harder to get their new cores into the desktops of every gamer and enthusiast out there while bringing older yet full-capable products closer to the average user's budget.

Be certain to visit our RealTime Pricing Engine for stats on the prices for your next hardware purchase.

ATI Cards

ATI spawned a winner when they launched the Radeon 9800 Pro 18 months ago and this fact is apparent in how well this card still manages to stand up to new game releases. While it's true that you won't be seeing massive frame rates at high detail and resolution on titles like Doom 3, it still packs enough of a punch if you can drop the resolution or detail settings a notch or two which isn't as bad as some may think. As shown in our recent Doom 3 Graphics Deathmatch the 9800 Pro manages to produce sufficient frame rates at less than 'Ultra' settings and resolution. In short, unless you absolutely require all the details and pixels your eyes can handle, and then some, the Sapphire Radeon 9800 Pro is still a solid choice for mid-to-high range gaming. At prices less than half of what X800's are going for this card is a good choice if you cannot wait a few more months to allow the newer products to come down in price a bit.

If gaming isn't of paramount importance or you aren't overly concerned with cracnking all the settings up on Doom 3 of the upcoming Half Life 2, the PowerColor Radeon 9600 Pro 256 shows some promise. While lacking some of the powerhouse attributes of a 9800 or X800, this card is more than enough to satisfy many gamers who are interested in titles such as Unreal Tournament 2003/2004, Battlefield 1942, and classics such as Counter-Strike. Moreover, if gaming isn't a concern at all, the 9600 will be more than enough for typical desktop applications, watching DVD's and other non-3D intensive applications.

NVIDIA Video Cards


View All Comments

  • thomas35 - Wednesday, August 25, 2004 - link

    I'm just wondering, why are you guys posting the Saphire 9800 ATLANTIS 128mb as being a 9800 PRO 12mb card? I'm sure you guys would know the difference by now. Reply
  • KristopherKubicki - Tuesday, August 24, 2004 - link

    TheAudit: It seems as though all of the merchants have run out of 5900 and 5950 availability. There are still a lot of 5900XTs though.

  • TheAudit - Sunday, August 22, 2004 - link

    Why have a lot of the 5900 prices sky-rocketed? Reply
  • KristopherKubicki - Sunday, August 22, 2004 - link

    The XFX GeForce 5900 retails for about $200, which is the one we recommended.

  • Avalon - Saturday, August 21, 2004 - link

    You can get a Gainward Golden Sample 5900 for $200...which will practically OC to ultra specs. That's a good deal less than a $285 vanilla 6800. Reply
  • Visual - Friday, August 20, 2004 - link

    eep... explain to me, why do you say 6800 prices are still high, and recommend a 5900 "for cheaper" ? the plain 6800 comes below $300 now, and no 5900 is anywhere near that cheap... and you've showed in your articles that the 6800 is faster too.

    also, there isn't a list of prices on the mem page, only comments.

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