Which Low-Profile AGP card?

Discussion in 'HP' started by ***JB, Oct 30, 2004.

  1. ***JB

    ***JB Guest

    I am looking for a Low Profile card for my HP Compaq Evo D510 SFF machine,
    these are quite difficult to find in the UK, however I've narrowed my choice
    to two cards.

    These are...
    XFX Geforce FX5200 128MB DDR (Approx £35-40)
    PowerColor Radeon 9200SE 128MB (Approx £30-40)

    Which low profile card would everyone recommend?
    Thanks
     
    ***JB, Oct 30, 2004
    #1
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  2. ***JB

    Ben Myers Guest

    I prefer ATI cards.

    Video cards with nVidia chipsets have a mixed reputation, caused mostly by the
    fact that nVidia licenses its basic board design to just about any company that
    wants to manufacture cards. The consequence is quality everywhere from
    excellent to cheap-and-sleazy. The major issue with nVidia chips is that they
    run hot. When a video card manufacturer chooses either to overclock the chip or
    to provide substandard cooling (a cheap cooling fan), the chips either burn out
    or begin to display wierd artifacts on the monitor screen. I replaced yet
    another nVidia graphics card for a client. The card was about 4 years old and
    displayed annoying shadows on the monitor in addition to what it was supposed to
    display.

    No matter what, pay attention to ventilation inside the computer. A graphics
    card loaded with 128MB of memory is another heat source inside an already
    cramped SFF chassis... Ben Myers
     
    Ben Myers, Oct 30, 2004
    #2
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  3. I prefer ATI cards.

    Really??

    ATI cards tend to be OK. Its there support that is the trouble.

    There drivers (with the exception of windows) are very buggy. They
    often support fewer features than there windows counterparts. They also
    fail to offer 64 bit versions. If there drivers were supplied as source
    this would be no problem. However they are provided only as binary,
    which means that customers tend to have to bear with ATIs whim as to
    when the 64 bit drivers will be realised.

    (As you may have guessed, I am not very happy with ATI as before I
    purchased my new 64 bit machine with a Raedon 9600SE they promised the
    64 bit binary drivers would be along 'very soon'. A long time later I
    am still waiting, and they are still failing to reply to my direct
    queries as to when they will be released.)

    -- Chris
     
    Chris Ballance, Oct 30, 2004
    #3
  4. ***JB

    Ben Myers Guest

    Your comments make sense. My perspective is a little more trailing edge,
    servicing, upgrading and refurbishing computers... Ben Myers
     
    Ben Myers, Oct 30, 2004
    #4
  5. ***JB

    Jon Danniken Guest

    Of those two cards, I would choose the FX5200. Even if the 9200 was not an
    SE (very slow) version, the FX5200 would still be preferable; my information
    was gleaned from this source:

    http://graphics.tomshardware.com/graphic/20031229/index.html

    As far as the general quality of ATI vs. nVidia, there are going to be a
    certain number of rabid fanb0is for either manufacturer, and they can safely
    be ignored. For the rest of us, they are both good manufacturers of GPUs.

    Jon
     
    Jon Danniken, Oct 31, 2004
    #5
  6. ***JB

    kony Guest

    Yet there is nothing particularly unique about ATI card's
    fans to make then last any longer, it is the weakest link on
    many cards regardless of GPU brand on it.
     
    kony, Oct 31, 2004
    #6
  7. ***JB

    Ben Myers Guest

    Too true. This is the price people pay for high end graphics cards with hot
    chips and lots of memory. The cards consume a lot of electrical power and
    produce a lot of heat which must be ventilated somehow. The space between an
    AGP slot and an adjacent PCI slot is narrow, leaving little room for a
    ventilating fan capable of moving many cubic feet per minute of air. The space
    between slots does not really allow air to circulate freely either.

    There are differences in the quality, ventilating capacity and size of cooling
    fans used on graphics cards.

    Nevertheless, the fact that nVidia cards are made almost exclusively by
    manufacturers with widely varying quality standards (i.e. literally ANY company
    willing to pay the price for the chips) argues against nVidia cards as a whole.
    Still, there may be some nVidia chipset cards that are designed with reliability
    in mind, and to provide adequate ventilation in a wide range of conditions.

    ATI sells cards under its own brand name and also licenses its designs to other
    manufacturers. I would recommend only ATI's own brand of cards rather than
    others, for the same reason cited above re. nVidia. You pay more the ATI brand,
    but you get what you pay for.

    Simply stated, the slot design of personal computers, with one slot on top of
    another, never anticipated the need for the ventilation requirelements of high
    speed hot graphics cards with lotsa memory. If you install a newer AGP card,
    try NOT to install any PCI card in the adjacent slot, or even the slot beyond.
    Doing so leaves more space for air to circulate.

    My experience with the repair of computers has to do with older computers, some
    with as little as 8MB on-board memory and with slower and cooler graphics chips.
    And cards wear out in such a limited environment. Now take that experience and
    extrapolate it to graphics chips running twice as fast and controlling up to
    256MB of memory. Imagine how long a card will last if it is made in a shoddy
    manner. Speed kills. Kills graphics cards... Ben Myers
     
    Ben Myers, Oct 31, 2004
    #7
  8. Riser cards exist for both PCI & AGP:
    o Sometimes they can help cooling - or impede it
    o Depends on the case cooling layout, graphics card heatsink design etc

    Keeping the slot next to the AGP slot clear is a very good idea.

    Remember the fan on a graphics card is just to blow air on the heatsink
    o You still have to get that heated air out of the PC
    o Until the heated air is removed, the grfx card fan recirculates its own hot air
    ---- the delta-T between case-ambient & grfx heatsink becomes less
    ---- the card will run hotter, and the cheap fan typically will have a shorter life
    o Some cards have better heatsinks than others
    ---- but getting the heat out of the case is important too :)

    The BTX case design did have some benefits:
    o It allowed a blow-thro direct airflow path thro inlet - CPU - Grfx - outlet
    o Unfortunately it suggested a single (cheap) fan solution for all of them
    ---- Prescott P4 is a short-term architecture, future architecture is P-M
    ---- however Graphics Cards ramped very quickly in thermal output
    o Passively cooled high-end graphics cards requires high airflow
    ---- otherwise case temperature suffers, and eventually so will the card

    nVidia seen to have fewer problems than ATI.
    ATI seem to be favoured by some reviewers, perhaps for reasons of
    advertising or some particular application (multi-function graphics cards).
    Well worth reading some reviews of the prospective cards - and there are
    other branded suppliers of cards like Crucial to consider re driver quality.

    Since you are looking at the non-bleeding-edge of the market, you may
    want to consider a PCI card - it may offer easier fitment or cooling etc. It
    has lower bandwidth than AGP - but is another option you may consider.

    Driver quality does matter.
     
    Dorothy Bradbury, Nov 1, 2004
    #8
  9. ***JB

    Guest Guest

    Ben, this newsgroup along with others is being crossposted. There is
    nothing you can do about it except killfile the obnoxious posters and
    do away with it.
     
    Guest, Nov 3, 2004
    #9
  10. ***JB

    Guest Guest

    Ben,

    Please post your reply on the bottom of each message you reply to.
    Most of us do not like top posters as they are dregs of the earth and
    Outhouse Depress is a piece of shit and is for AOLamers from AOHell or
    n00bs, not bright smart people like you.
     
    Guest, Nov 3, 2004
    #10
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