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What PCI Express dual-DVI card to buy for non-gaming/graphics use?

Discussion in 'Matrox' started by Kaare Digernes, Jan 28, 2005.

  1. I'm putting together a system based on an HP xw4200 workstation and two
    HP L1955 TFT DVI monitors and am looking for recommendations on a
    suitable graphics card.

    The xw4200 has a PCI Express (x16) graphics slot (plus two PCI Express
    (x1) slots) and I'd like to find a suitable graphics card for it. I'm
    not into gaming or heavy graphics use, in fact I'll primarily use this
    system for development work (primarily in Windows XP, with Linux now and
    then) doing a mix of console and Java Swing applications. I figure a
    decent 2D (or entry-level 3D) card should suffice. Furthermore, I would
    prefer a card that has two DVI connectors (so I don't have to use VGA
    adapters) and that is reasonably quiet.

    The ones I have been looking at so far are the XFX GeForce 6600 GT, the
    PowerColor RADEON X800 XL, and the ATI FireGL V3200. All are, as far as
    I can tell, overkill for my use. :) The XFX card is also reportedly
    quite noisy (but perhaps it can be modified to use a quieter fan?).

    If you can recommend any cards I should consider, or have any pointers
    to good resources, I'd greatly appreciate it!


    Kaare Digernes, Jan 28, 2005
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  2. Hi,

    Two questions:

    1. If you're not planning on any gaming/graphics-intensive use, wouldn't
    *any* PCIe card be overkill? (You might find that a PCI card gives you the
    same responsiveness, and at a much cheaper price).

    2. Given identical monitors, is there likely to be a noticeable difference
    between one that's driven across DVI and one that's driven across VGA? If
    not, then something along the lines of a Radeon 9250 might be a good choice.

    The Pine GeForce 6600 is also something to look at -- PCIe, dual-DVI, and at
    $130, you don't have to cut back to 2 meals a day. :)

    Good Luck!
    Michael David Garrison, Jan 28, 2005
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  3. That's a good point. I figured that the price difference between a good
    2D card and a decent 3D card (with good 2D performance) would be nominal
    and that the 3D performance would benefit from PCIe. Just in case I
    should break down and play an occasional game. ;-) I'll see what PCI
    cards are out there. Thanks for the tip!
    The reason is that I read a review where the reviewer commented on some
    ghosting on the HP monitor when used with a VGA adapter so I thought I'd
    eliminate the risk altogether. I don't think the performance itself will
    be affected at all.
    Hmm, I tried finding this card, but all I could find was the 256 MB
    version and it still had DVI+VGA and not DVI+DVI. And at a slightly
    higher price ($140-150, no big deal). Do you remember where you saw it?
    I checked the Pine/XFX web site and the picture and the description
    leads me to believe it's a DVI+VGA card. I hope I'm wrong, because this
    sounds like it could fit the bill nicely! :)

    Thanks for your help, Michael, I appreciate it!

    Kaare Digernes, Jan 28, 2005
  4. Hey,

    This looks like the link to Pine Technologies' graphics cards (they list
    several as being dual-DVI): http://www.xfxforce.com/products.php

    (It looks like the model number PVT43GNDF7 -- a Geforce 6600GT model -- is
    their lowest dual-DVI model... and I have just accomplished the boggling
    feat of telling you what you already knew per your first post -- a lot of
    good I'm doing, lol!)

    I found that GeForce6600 card by going to Pricescan.com and doing a search
    on graphics adapters (Mfr = Pine, Bus Type = PCI Exp). Pricescan said that
    it's dual-DVI, but that disagrees with what the manufacturer says.

    For what it's worth, I'm running a dual-monitor setup, though with different
    monitors; and like you, I'm not that big into 3D graphics. However, it's
    nice to have the speed if I want it later, and the card I chose -- an AIW
    X600 Pro -- wasn't horribly expensive (and I need to lose a little weight

    Good luck getting your rig set up!
    Michael David Garrison, Jan 29, 2005
  5. Kaare Digernes

    Stuart Guest

    Stuart, Jan 29, 2005
  6. Kaare Digernes

    J. Clarke Guest

    Now just how is he going to put that in his HP workstation that has no AGP

    Which raises the price of that board to the same range as a PCI-Express

    The OP might want to go over to Newegg and select "Video Cards" off the
    "shop for" menu and then "2" under Ports-DVI and that will give him an idea
    of what's available. Lots of PCI Express 6600-family boards in the 200-250
    price range.
    J. Clarke, Jan 29, 2005
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