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Should I get an ati or nvidia card?

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  • Should I get an ati or nvidia card?

    Firstly, sorry if this is the wrong section of the forums, but I wasn't sure which to put it in...

    Basically, I need a new graphics card. I'm on a geforce fx 5200, and I'm a gamer. yeh...

    I'm really not sure about which company I should give my money though. I would personally prefer to support amd/ati because of their current attitude of the whole thing, and they aren't doing too great at the moment, and having competition to nvidia/intel to avoid a monopoly is always good.

    But, are the drivers in linux up to scratch? I don't need something too excessive, just something to play ut2k4 and et:qw.

    If I go for nvidia I'll probably go for an 8800gt or something similar in the 9 series, but have no clue one what cards by ati are of similar quality / price, and whether open source drivers support them, or if even the binary ones do, and their performance.

    So basically, I want to get an amd/ati, but are they really a good idea to get when used in linux for gaming, and which models are suitable?

    Thanks in advance

  • #2
    The ATI drivers perform well on recent hardware (R6XX cards), so getting a cheap HD3870 would be a great upgrade. On the nvidia side 8xxx and 9xxx cards are now fully supported, but even now the 7xxx cards are the best for Linux usage (personally).
    Both drivers have problems. Like slow 2D with fglrx and some problems with 3D rendering in certain situations, not to mention the countless installation issues many report (personally, I have yet to experience any serious problems with my cards). Nvidia users are also reporting extremelly slow 2D with 8xxx and 9xxx cards, but this seems to be only happening in certain situations, and they also have installation problems (most I have heard are related to 9xxx cards).

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    • #3
      That looks like the perfect card for my new pc (hd3870).

      But I also need a card for my current pc which is agp. Obviously something cheaper temporarily.

      I've looked at the hd2600xt and it looks good, but how well does it perform on the linux drivers?

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      • #4
        You know that there have been permanently problems with AGP cards? I would get rid of the board soon and get a PCI-E card.

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        • #5
          Ok, I guess i'll just wait till my new pc then.

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          • #6


            But yeah, PCI-E, please.

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            • #7
              Supposedly the AGP problems on ATI cards have been resolved in this last driver, but I don't have any AGP cards left, so I can't say.

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              • #8
                What are these problems anyway?

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                • #9
                  I think there were two main issues.

                  The first one appeared some months back while we were moving from Linux-specific to common code for more of the 3D stack; AGP cards using the bridge chip which used to work started showing more problems and wouldn't start up at all for some users. I think most of those are fixed, not sure if we have 100% yet.

                  The second issue was that AGP boards based on HD2xxx started shipping from our board partners before we had driver support available. As of the 8.5 release we have about half of the HD2xxx AGP configurations covered under Linux, and the remaining AGP boards should pick up support over the next release or two.

                  I would also vote for upgrading to PCIE if you can; one option might be a 780-based board which gives you PCIE slots and surprisingly good graphics at a decent price; Michael just finished reviewing an example.
                  bridgman
                  AMD Linux
                  Last edited by bridgman; 30 May 2008, 03:30 PM.
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                    I would also vote for upgrading to PCIE if you can; one option might be a 780-based board which gives you PCIE slots and surprisingly good graphics at a decent price; Michael just finished reviewing an example.
                    John, you might want to clarify that you mean the AMD 780G chipset

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