Final Words

Who knew that there would be so much to talk about surrounding the launch of a new entry-level part? Concluding is thankfully a little more concise in this case.

If all of the cards in this review actually stick to their MSRPs, then the clear suggestion would be the $149 ATI Radeon X700. In every single game outside of Doom 3, the X700 does extremely well, putting even the GeForce 6600 to shame; and in Doom 3, the card holds its own with the 6600. Unfortunately, with the X700 still not out on the streets, it's tough to say what sort of prices it will command. For example, the GeForce 6600 is supposed to have a street price of $149, but currently, it's selling for closer to $170. So, as the pricing changes, so does our recommendation.

In most cases, the GeForce 6200 does significantly outperform the X300 and X600 Pro, its target competitors from ATI. The X300 is priced significantly lower than the 6200's $129 - $149 range, so it should be outperformed by the 6200 and it is. The X600 Pro is a bit more price-competitive with the GeForce 6200, despite offering equal and even greater performance in certain cases.

However, we end up back at square one. In order for the 6200 to be truly successful, it needs to either hit well below its $129 - $149 price range, or ATI's X700 needs to be much more expensive than $149. In the latter case, if the card is out of your budget, then the 6200 is a reasonable option, but in the former case, you can't beat the X700. Given that neither one of the cards we're debating about right now are even out, anything said right now would be pure speculation. But keep an eye on the retailers. When these cards do hit the streets, you should know what the right decision should be.


Special thanks to Newegg for supplying hardware for this comparison test.

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  • nvdm24 - Sunday, December 19, 2004 - link

    Many of the readers of these tech sites want to know the full capabilities of the cards, yet, sadly, reviewers at anandtech and every other tech site ignore the video capabilities of video cards. Even in the reviews for the new 6600 agp, the video aspect has not been tested by any reviewer despite the problems of the 6800. Never mind the fact that EVERY review of these cards is about the 3d aspect and is nearly the exact same - run halo, doom 3, hl 2, etc. and list the performance, yet no tests of dvd movies or the video aspect are conducted, thus doing a HUGE disservice to readers. Reply
  • nserra - Thursday, December 16, 2004 - link

    I dont understand why on you previous 6200 review the X300 wins, loses (Doom3), and keep up, but now a much worst 6200 wins over X300. How the hell did that hapen, new nvidia drivers? Reply
  • nserra - Thursday, December 16, 2004 - link

    I dont understand why on you previous 6200 review the X300 wins, loses (Doom3), and keep up, but now a much worst 6200 wins over X300. How the hell did that hapen, new nvidia drivers? Reply
  • IntelUser2000 - Thursday, October 14, 2004 - link

    Surprisingly, my 865G with Intel Extreme Graphics 2 can run Doom 3 beta at default, it still crashes, but when I run it, I get barely playable frames, I say around 20 at the highest and less than 10. I think the GMA900 should be much better, but maybe the DX9 support in it really sucks. Reply
  • nserra - Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - link

    #39 Thanks to the answer, but...

    Doesnt 2 cards cost more then one?
    And whats the difference between having two 6600GT vs 6800GT? in price and performance?

    I think this kind of "edge" could come in the future like the voodoo2 did, the card was getting old, people getting rid of it and "some" get them cheap just to keep their PC the longger time they could.
    Reply
  • Confusednewbie1552 - Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - link

    #30

    Everyone wants 660GT because they are cheap and two of them can be put into SLI mode (once Nforce 4 comes out) which could mean better performance than the X700, and maybe even the X800.
    Reply
  • PrinceGaz - Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - link

    I'm sure the core of the 6600 will overclock very well, but the memory all depends on the particular chips used and might not have any real headroom. That could be its main problem as its an 8-pipe 300MHz core so theres plenty of power there, but only 128-bit 500MHz (effective) memory which is what is probably holding it back. If thats the case then overclocking the core may not help very much.

    Its a pity no attempt to overclock was performed in the review, but then again the results from overclocking cards sent out by the manufacturer are always suspect as they could have hand-picked the best.
    Reply
  • thebluesgnr - Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - link

    " I can't see how the 6200 could have a street-price of $149 (128-bit) and $129 (64-bit). "

    It's actually $129 for the 128MB 128-bit version and $149 for the 256MB 128-bit version. The 64-bit version (only 128MB) should have an MSRP of $100, according to the Inquirer.

    So nVidia has:
    $100 6200 128MB 64-bit
    $130 6200 128MB 128-bit
    $150 6200 256MB 128-bit
    $150 6600 128MB 128-bit
    $200 6600GT 128MB 128-bit

    In my opinion ATI beats all nVidia cards except for their $200, where the 6600GT wins. But we can't forget the 6600 has a great overclocking potential, and street prices should be lower than the X700's, because of the slower memory.
    Like already mentioned, you can find the 6600 for $135 already.
    Reply
  • mkruer - Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - link

    To X700 XT or to 9800 Pro, that is the question Reply
  • neo229 - Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - link

    I also wish to thank you for keeping up the fight to unravel the mystery behind the mysterious video processor. That notion of that feature really got me excited when I first heard about it, yet site after site after site reviewed these cards without even touching on the subject. Reply

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