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View Full Version : Best graphics quality ATI 9700 Pro or Nvidia 6600 GT?



MBeck
07-20-2005, 12:27 AM
Iv been using my old trusted 9700 Pro for quite a while now but am looking into a new card so my girlfriend can have my old card (Nice exuse to get a new card http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif ).

Iv read that the issues with the UZO spray and the other stuff have been fixed with the new drivers from nvidia, so one question remains...

Iv also read that the quality of the graphics in SH3 is much better with ATI than with the Nvidia cards.

Any comments on that?
Preferably from players who has actully had the chance to view a differense

MBeck
07-20-2005, 12:27 AM
Iv been using my old trusted 9700 Pro for quite a while now but am looking into a new card so my girlfriend can have my old card (Nice exuse to get a new card http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif ).

Iv read that the issues with the UZO spray and the other stuff have been fixed with the new drivers from nvidia, so one question remains...

Iv also read that the quality of the graphics in SH3 is much better with ATI than with the Nvidia cards.

Any comments on that?
Preferably from players who has actully had the chance to view a differense

kag9000
07-20-2005, 03:53 AM
Well for the price/performance I wholeheartedly recommend one. (warning though: if you have an SiS motherboard you may have problems) I had a 9200 radeon before the NVidia.

I have a 6600GT and SH3 looks great, along with a few other new games.

Hope that helps

alanschu
07-20-2005, 03:55 AM
A 6600 GT would likely be quite a bit faster than the 9700 Pro.

I have a 9800 Pro and it seems comparable performance wise to the 6600 GT a friend of mine has.

netherways
07-20-2005, 05:10 AM
Hi there,

My 6600GT in one of my PC's totally wipes out the 9700Pro on my other. I'd go for nVidia every time!

Alex

doug.d
07-20-2005, 05:38 AM
nVidia... mmmm... Places order for 7800 GTX. I wish. My 9700 Pro workhorse is coping well, but if I add the World mod, it almost dies. My friends 6600 GT is faster.

trooperxp
07-20-2005, 05:43 AM
Some folks somewhere else on the forum told me (nVidia fx5900 user) that water effects are far more impressive on ati cards. I havent been able to do a proper comparison but seen some pics and they seem to be right. This is only going on what i have been told though.

MBeck
07-20-2005, 05:49 AM
Thnx for the feedback so far.

I do know that it will alot faster and thats its a really good buy. But like Trooper said, its been rumourd that the quality of some things in SH3 will be lesser than even my present card.

Any more comments?

doug.d
07-20-2005, 06:03 AM
My 9700 Pro went in for a checkup a few months ago, some hassles with some games. The dealer loaned me an Nvidia FX XXXX (can't remember which) card. All my games played without any problems but they didn't look so good. You win something, you lose something it seems, or maybe I had it setup wrong.

My 9700 was ok, a format C solved the problems.

jpr21b
07-20-2005, 06:14 AM
don't get the 9700!

Even if there is the UZO spray bug, it isnt anything that really effects the visual experience of the game, also, with the 6600 GT you will be GUARANTEED to play next years and next years after that submarine simulations, with the 9700, you will be putting yourself a generation back.

The 6600GT is exponentially faster than the 9700, especially when it comes to games that use direct x 9.0 graphics.

(9700 is the very first card to be able to support dx 9, the 6600GT is a generation after)

I have both cards, and while the 9700 was an amazing card for its time, it is now just too plain old. (the venerable 9700 now sits in my girfriends computer, and i built a new one with the 6600gt)

MBeck
07-20-2005, 06:46 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by jpr21b:
don't get the 9700!

Even if there is the UZO spray bug, it isnt anything that really effects the visual experience of the game, also, with the 6600 GT you will be GUARANTEED to play next years and next years after that submarine simulations, with the 9700, you will be putting yourself a generation back.

The 6600GT is exponentially faster than the 9700, especially when it comes to games that use direct x 9.0 graphics.

(9700 is the very first card to be able to support dx 9, the 6600GT is a generation after)

I have both cards, and while the 9700 was an amazing card for its time, it is now just too plain old. (the venerable 9700 now sits in my girfriends computer, and i built a new one with the 6600gt) </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
I have the 9700 Pro but am looking for improovement. Thats why Im looking at the 6600GT.

Have you seen the difference between the 9700 Pro and the 6600GT in SH3?

JU88
07-20-2005, 07:10 AM
funnily enough the 6600GT performs about the same (even silghtly better) as a fx5950 Ultra, which is a way higher card than the 9700 pro.

Abihco
07-20-2005, 09:59 AM
Don't compare the 6600GT to any of the FX series of cards. The FX series were dogs. I upgraded from an FX5600-256 to a 6600GT, and the difference in performance and visual quality is staggering.

The 9700 Pro is not on par with the 6600GT, and should not be compared as in the same class. I have a friend who has the 6600GT in one machine and the 9800 Pro in another, and even that difference is pretty noticeable in favor of the 6600GT.

For bang for the buck, the 6600GT is a winner, IMO. I have had zero problems that were not application-based.

JU88
07-20-2005, 10:36 AM
Lol, why cant we compare the 6600GT to the Fx cards or the radeon 9xxx cards? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_confused.gif you have to compare to see the difference, no?

Abihco
07-20-2005, 10:43 AM
I perhaps should have said "You should not compare.."

You can do what you will, but the gap between the 6600GT and the FX/9700 series cards is pretty wide and, as such, could be related to comparing a Ford Taurus to a Ford GT. As long as you're only looking for tires and the fact that it moves and uses gas, the comparison would be relevant. Otherwise, why bother?

This is, of course, my personal opinion from seeing all the cards mentioned in action during the frequent LAN parties we hold with similar mobo/proc/memory loadouts.

MBeck
07-20-2005, 12:08 PM
Abihco...

Its the image quality im interrested in - not the speed. I know the 6600GT is far faster - of course http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Abihco
07-20-2005, 12:33 PM
I look for both, and as such expect a lot from my cards.

IMO, world-class image quality at 3 fps is no better than a shoddy image at 500 fps. So, again IMO, the 6600GT is the best bang for the buck. If money is no object, both ATI and nvidia have some compelling new products. But I was sticking largely to the FX/9700 comparison to the 6600GT. And I routinely go nvidia over ATI in my rigs. I have just had better luck with them and developed a personal preference. They also readily and rapidly deploy linux video drivers, which is a big plus.

quillan
07-20-2005, 01:03 PM
Since the 6600GT performance is just slightly better than that of a 9800 Pro according to the benchmarks I've seen, I would expect it to perform 15-20% faster than a 9700 Pro. Also, since the 6600GT fully supports Shader Model 3.0, it has higher potential image quality. Actual image quality will depend on other factors.

plenten
07-20-2005, 02:36 PM
Indeed. I don't understand the comparison between the Nvidia 6600 and the ATI 9700. Two different generation cards. I think you should compare the 6600 with an ATI X300 or above series. I run an X800 Pro. "Whooosh" through every game so far. Funny enough, I use to stay with Nvidia. But ATI is just as good, or even better.

jpr21b
07-20-2005, 03:20 PM
http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=2196

this article at anandtech.com benchmarks the 6600GT with a huge amount of other cards, including the 9700 and 9800 and others

jpr21b
07-20-2005, 03:22 PM
this is a quote from the article at anandtech.com

"It is clear that the 6600 GT hits a very sweet spot in the market. The card consistently performs on par with some of the lower end high end cards (6800 and X800 Pro) at lower resolutions below 1600x1200 without AA and AF enabled. This should be enough to sell any casual gamer on the card. Let alone the fact that even when AA and AF are turned on, the NV43 based GT is still a better option than the 5950 U and the 9800 XT in performance. Considering that these two previous gen cards go for at least $300 anywhere we could find them, this makes the 6600 GT a much better buy. On top of that, previous gen cards that go for $200 will be much less performing still. All this adds up to mean that even the hardcore gamer who just doesn't have $300 to $500 to spend will be very satisfied with a 6600 GT. If $200 is in the budget, and PCI Express is a necessity, the 6600 GT is absolutely the way to go. "
http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif Oh yeah, they make a smokin AGP version too.

When I get home tonight Ill check out the visual difference between 9700 and 6600GT with SH3, and Ill even throw in a x300 128MB http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

oh and to make this quote obsolete "Since the 6600GT performance is just slightly better than that of a 9800 Pro according to the benchmarks I've seen"

the 6600GT is actually much faster, not slightly, look at the benchmarks from anandtech.com, all of the benchmarks.http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/6600gt%20review_09070410954/4403.png

http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/6600gt%20review_09070410954/4388.png

http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/6600gt%20review_09070410954/4410.png

The card is in some cases twice as fast as the 9800 pro. Now the 9800 XT, its not ultra-faster, however it is still a noticeable difference in performance. Especially since a 6600GT is cheaper than a 9800 XT.

doug.d
07-21-2005, 01:04 AM
The 9700 Pro had issues with some PC's, OS's etc., which ATI was never able to fix completely, so they opted for a replacement card i.e. the 9800 which is a 9700 with extra memory and a few fixes. Both are essentially the same generation technology. Move on and leave them and the crappy nVidia FX series in the past where they belong.

MBeck
07-21-2005, 01:22 AM
Again...im not comparing the speed of the 9700 and the 6600GT.

For me image quality and the way games LOOK, does matter, thats why i asked.

Lets set aside the discussion on speeds and look at the image quality.

Will the 6600GT deliver the same image quality in SH3 as the ATI x800?

JU88
07-21-2005, 06:24 AM
@MBECK What do you mean, you dont care about speed?? what do you mean by image quality??

By 'good image quality' You mean playing a game with all the effects, high resolution and Antialiasing on, but in order to do that with out getting jerky movement like (5 frames per second) You need a FAST card.
What good is nice image quality if it runs as slow as a donkey? Im saying in order to have good image quality you need a FAST card, speed dictates everything when it comes to graphics cards.

The 6600 GT is better card than the 9700 pro in every respect.

trooperxp
07-21-2005, 07:18 AM
Well simply put, if your looking for full screen AA to crisp out your graphics, in my experience with nVidia cards AA doesnt work well on them. I get severe frame rate drops and things like particle fx jus disappear from games when it is turned on. Even Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 textures go all screwed up with AA on with my nVidia FX5900, and the card should manage that game easily with AA on.

MBeck
07-21-2005, 07:19 AM
@JU88

Of course I care about framerates. Thats the reason im looking for a new cardhttp://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Image quality:
1) How the 2D graphics looks when not playing games.
2) The image quality of textures in the game. Game developers has to develop for both nvidia and ATI these days. The work might differ, so a game looks slighty different on nvidia vs ATI.

Some have said that the water looks way better with a ATI card vs a nvidia card, thus indicating that the dev team did a better job with the ATI card procceses.

Im just looking for some kind of indication of if the game will look the same or better on a nvdia card vs a ATI card.

HKLE
07-21-2005, 08:01 AM
Hi folks

I myself own a ATI 9700 pro and am interested in upgrading.

But - with my current configuration, I may need MOBO and CPU upgrade as well ???

AMD 2000+
1 GB RAM
AGP version 9700 pro

Any comments ?

Abihco
07-21-2005, 08:04 AM
There is an AGP version of the 6600GT (which I run). You'll need a mobo capable of 8X AGP and a connection from the power supply for the video card. If you can meet those requirements, you'll not need any further upgrades. You'd get better overall performance with a newer mobo and CPU, but it's not technically required so long as you meet the two requirements I listed above.

JU88
07-21-2005, 08:59 AM
The game looks great on the 6600GT with 4x AA on.

Faamecanic
07-21-2005, 09:11 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by trooperxp:
Some folks somewhere else on the forum told me (nVidia fx5900 user) that water effects are far more impressive on ati cards. I havent been able to do a proper comparison but seen some pics and they seem to be right. This is only going on what i have been told though. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

That is true. I recently upgraded my PC from a 9800Pro 256mb to a 6800GT 256mb.

WHile I do notice a improvement with the 6800...the water (and sun/light bloom) were WAAAAY better looking with the 9800PRO. So much so I considered RMA'ing the 6800GT...but the GT looks GREAT with many of my other games (Doom3, GTA SA).

MBeck
07-21-2005, 09:31 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Faamecanic:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by trooperxp:
Some folks somewhere else on the forum told me (nVidia fx5900 user) that water effects are far more impressive on ati cards. I havent been able to do a proper comparison but seen some pics and they seem to be right. This is only going on what i have been told though. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

That is true. I recently upgraded my PC from a 9800Pro 256mb to a 6800GT 256mb.

WHile I do notice a improvement with the 6800...the water (and sun/light bloom) were WAAAAY better looking with the 9800PRO. So much so I considered RMA'ing the 6800GT...but the GT looks GREAT with many of my other games (Doom3, GTA SA). </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
No screenies?

CRSutton
07-21-2005, 10:11 AM
Holy Moses! You mean to say that expensive 9800 pro that I bought 12 months ago is an obsolete dog!!!! This is getting out of hand.

Actually, SHIII, Pacific Fighters, DoomIII, and Half Life 2 all run pretty well on my old 1.8 gig AMD card with the 9800 pro and 1 gig of RAM. There is occasional stutter but the grapic quality is good on my new dell 19 inch flat screen. The first few months were hard as there is always a lot of tweaking to make a new card work on a older machine. (learned a lot of new things such as reflashing cards and chips and tweaking drivers) The main thing I learned is that there is no such thing as "plug and play" http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif if you are a serious gamer.

I guess a new machine is in the works for the near future.

trooperxp
07-21-2005, 02:01 PM
My rig is still coping well with games, its about 2 years old now that i built myself. Its upseting though how i now have to turn some graphics settings down to high or medium and not have ultra high. Still, the main thing is i have got my money's worth out of all of the hardware so i am happy. This taken into account - MBeck, if you dont mind paying for the hardware and you know you will get the use out of it, go for it. Since the 6600 GT is a new card it should do you for quite some time.

Hiriyu
07-21-2005, 08:39 PM
The consensus here is pretty much on the ball. If your two choices are a 9700Pro and 6600GT, you should by all means go with the 6600. Much better value/$ spent.

However, if image quality at any cost is an issue, then I'd strongly recommend a higher-end ATI product. Though the benchmarks score them pretty closely overall, my AGP X800XT does have a definite edge over my friends PCI-E 6800GT in terms of visual quality - enough so that my 6800 owning friends spend an inordinate amount of time gaming on my more antiquated system. Remember that we are not really seeing titles yet that greatly benefit from what the newer Nvidia offerings are capable of offering (the 7800 notwithstanding http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif)

The image quality of the ATI hardware at high levels of AA/AF does come at considerable cost though, so if you are budgeting for that particular segment, the 6600 is a no-brainer IMHO.

poboy05
07-21-2005, 10:35 PM
6600GT

doug.d
07-21-2005, 11:14 PM
Putting the fastest card into my PC won't help me, the rest of the stuff will just hold it back. So, upgrade of the whole engine room is required. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif I was hoping for ATI's R520 but it seems this will be vapourware for some time still. My window of opportunity closes in a few months, so it looks like a switch to nVidia's 7800 is likely.

Callo1
07-23-2005, 08:43 AM
Don't be a cornballhttp://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif Tossing up Doom 3 benchmarks has NOTHING to do with how SH3 will run on those cards. Doom 3 was programmed to a Nvidia showcase for the 6600 and 6800 cards. Early on Nvidia cards had a very large advantage with the benchmarks, but Ati has released drivers to make their cards run every bit as good as the Nvidia cards on Doom 3. Ati did the same thing with Far Cry, and Nvidia released drivers to help their cards run well for that game as well.

Comparing the 6600 and the 9700 are like comparing apples to oranges, as those are seperated by a generation on the hardware side of things.

I have 1 comp with a Nvidia 6800 Ultra and another with a Radeon X850XT and I am more impressed with the X850XT than the 6800 Ultra.

That being said, Nvidia's latest cards are MUCH MUCH better than they had been for the past few years. Nvidia has really upped the image quality on their cards to an almost (not quite) level as Ati's.

The problem that still remains with Nvidia's is that when you turn up all the image quality effects, they take a larger performance hit than Ati's do. I run both systems with 4x Anti Aliasing and 8X Anisotropic Filtering on and use FRAPS to record my frames per second and the X850XT beats out the 6800 Ultra by 10fps average. As far as image quality on SH3 I can tell you without a doubt that the Ati looks better as well.

We are talking about SH3 right?

There are other games that run better on my 6800 Ultra than my X850XT, but SH3 isn't one of them.

By the way, all other system components in both systems are the same:

1gig Corsair XMS pc4000 LL, SB Audigy2zs, MSI K8TNEO-FSI2R, Athlon 64 3700+

Bottom line, if you play mostly Open GL games, go with Nvidia. If you play more Direct 3D games, go with Ati. A 6600GT is a good card, but an X800XL is a smarter buy "IF" you want the better of the two for SH3.

rls669
07-25-2005, 05:03 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by JU88:
Lol, why cant we compare the 6600GT to the Fx cards or the radeon 9xxx cards? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_confused.gif you have to compare to see the difference, no? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

You don't compare the two because the 9700 is 3 generations old. Why not compare the 9700 to a Voodoo 2 while you're at it?

I wouldn't worry about 2d quality -- any card has really good 2d these days. Using a good monitor calibration utility will make far more of a difference than changing cards in pursuit of 2d quality.

I wouldn't put much stock in benchmarks without AA and AF enabled. SH3 looks really bad without anti-aliasing -- there are screenshots on this forum that have enough jaggies to make me cry http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

The 6600GT looks like a good deal at the moment. If I had to guess, I'd say it will give you similar framerates with 4xAA to what you get with the 9700 with no enhancements.

Personally, I've never found upgrading to a midline card to be worthwhile; they get outdated too fast. You save money up front but have to upgrade twice as often. I'd save a bit more and go for a 6800GT if possible.