All this debate about which graphics card is best.

ComradeMishkin

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Hi.

I am not an expert in graphics cards and I don't post or put my coments on here often because of it, just read and learn, but I do have a question.

I can't remember where I read it from, and it was quite a while back, I think just before the latest Radions and Gforce FXs came out, but what I read was that at the time when ATI were in the final stages of the Radions, Nvidia encountered some kind of a problem with one of their products, which forced them to move the release date of the Gforce cards about 6 months later.

So the question is if this IS the case. And if it is then is it possible the Nvidia just never managed to recover from that in time to beat ATI producs.

I know this isn't an excuse for Nvidia to make bad cards and all, this is called life and competition etc, but at least in this case they have a reason for not designing as good cards or rushing projects to catch up with the technological improvements and hence the FX cards could be just "rough" and not complete designs, that they tried to get out of theiy way to move on to the next generation cards, so they can be ready and complete on time.

Like I said it was a while since I saw that article and can't remember all the details (don't think they gave too many of them anyway) so if anybody could let me know if any of this is true.

Cheers
 

Vapor

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The 6 months are long over. Neither company has released anything groundbreaking since R300, either.

Maxtor disgraces the six letters that make Matrox.
 

pauldh

Illustrious
I'm sure others will argue, but basically what happened is ATI Launched it's Radeon 9700 Pro and 9500 Pro cards which basically made NVidia soil their pants. By the time they changed their diapers, yes they couldn't catch up and were finally under pressure to regain the top performance status that was theirs. Basically I believe that ATI's 9700 pro's destruction of the mighty Ti4600 forced Nvidia to rush and put out the absolutely horrible and unpolished leafblower named the FX5800 Ultra. NVidia further has had problems regaining the top performance and also the trust of many people.

So basically, which card is best. Depends on price range, but the absolute best gaming card now is the Radeon 9800XT.

(Oh boy, my NVidiot scanners are picking up activy) See ya.

ABIT IS7, P4 2.6C, 512MB Corsair TwinX PC3200LL, Radeon 9500 Pro, Santa Cruz, Antec 1000AMG, TruePower 430watt
 

ComradeMishkin

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Quite possble, like I said I don't know much these things, just remembered what I read this one day and by the sounds of things Radions are better than Gforces at the moment. But Nvidia is a huge company and it did produce some great products before and something is telling me that Nvidia is not the kind that will go down without a fight. I wouldn't be surprised if its the next generation cards will be some kick ass cards (soz for language, dunno if alloud to say these things on here).

I do not have favorites in the graphics cards, but, as you might have noticed, I do have a preference of Gforce to Radions, which is simply because I never used others and never had any problems with Nvidia. Also I saw quite a few posts on here regarding Radion problems, which kinda puts me off them.
 
This is probably the site you were thinking of (not the front page);

<A HREF="http://www.notforidiots.com/GPURW.php" target="_new">http://www.notforidiots.com/GPURW.php</A>

and it was probably UTTAR's last editorial that was the article in question;

<A HREF="http://www.notforidiots.com/ULE.php" target="_new">http://www.notforidiots.com/ULE.php</A>

Of course I could be wrong, just sounds about right based on what you said.

And really it was more of a question of a few other things. Remember the R300 preceeded the FXs by quite some time, and even then they rushed the FX5800s to market. Considering the release date of the GF4ti I think nV didn't expect such a response from ATI in the middle of their cycles.


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pauldh

Illustrious
I do prefer ATI, but I have used many NVidia cards and Their GF4Ti's ruled in their day. I do not however like the FX cards as I simply can't see a reason not to buy the comparable (although better in my mind) ATI Card. Of course the 5900se has potential, but until NVidia can do the same to the current ATI Cards that the GF4 Ti's did tp the Radeon 8500 line, I'll be in ATI's camp. Anyway, yes NVidia is big and i am glad they are able to come back with newer and better cards. The competition is good for us buyers. If there weren't GF FX's, then ATI had no reason to release the 9800 XT, which drove the price of the 9800 pro down. I don't buy top of the line, but I Have my eyes open for a sub $250 radeon 9800 Pro.

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phial

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(Oh boy, my NVidiot scanners are picking up activy) See ya.


yea.. well the most those guys do is just scream and hollar, call you names and come back with bullshite facts




you pretty much summed it up... the 9700pro was (and STILL IS) a freaking amazing card. it was truly ahead of its time, and one of the few great leaps that video cards have made (reminds of of the Geforce1/voodoo2 etc)

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coolsquirtle

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R300 was amazing, it was crazzzzzy. nVidia didn't see it coming, i mean Ti4200 was wasting 8500 eyes closed.

RIP Block Heater....HELLO P4~~~~~
120% nVidia Fanboy
FX5700Ultra, the next Ti4200? seems so
 

UNSoldierPT

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I agree with the fact that with the introduction of the Radeon 9XXX family everything changed. Ati is that kind of company that started to make some kind of feedback. They just began to listen to their costumers and make thinks better.

Well, one more thing, is true that NVidia started to name their SE series XT? just to confuse the consumers? If its true, then NVidia managment should go to hell because of playing those stuppid games.
 

kinney

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I prefer NV. Because they have the best driver support in the industry and offer comparable speed/quality to ATI. Theres no pure DX9 games out there that I play often or would really NEED a $350 video card to play when all I would have to do is lower the res or crank detail down to medium on a slightly older card (such as my GF4 4200).
I think the differences between the lines are teeth pulling issues. NV/ATI have always been close enough (post 8500 era for ATI only), where you could run out and buy either top of the line card and not get a complete dud.
The IQ arguements are based off of a screen shot of a game that runs at about 100MPH and then zoomed in 8x on a pixel in photoshop. Its a little silly to base a buying purchase off a case like that but a fervor is created from all the earth shaking 'controversy'.
Seriously that stuff is created by fanboys and nerds with WAY to much time on their hands.

Its a nice hobby but I think sometimes I think both companies are scruntinized a bit too much.

Features mean alot more to me, IMHO ATI has better tv output (generally) and is much more feature filled in the multimedia segment. ATI EZSHARE and using multiple tv tuners for PIP is really nice. Their transparent tv viewing with the AIW line is something I enjoyed with my TV Wonder.
NV has it down on most every other segment IMO, their drivers are fuller featured and I'd put my faith in their drivers to better support any given game on release. This isnt ALWAYS true but generally is, at least the majority of history has proven this.
I'll give some examples that I've came across; 90deg rotation for LCDs (or other monitors), a custom refresh rate prog that actually works correctly, ability to define custom resolutions within the drivers which is great for emulators, and Windows acceleration is better on NV.. my XP was much snappier on my GF2MX than even my 9800 Pro. Though the last one could be a matter of debate, anyone who has been around for any short amount of time will remember when XP was first released NV was VERY timely with getting drivers out and making it a point in saying that their drivers fully accelerate the new GUI interface (and claimed to be the only ones to do so, which from my experience I would believe).
The speed and IQ differences get a little anal IMO.
They are both damn fast and look good while doing it. If you want something that legitimately is SLOW get a Volari.

On your comment on NV going 'down'.
Dont kid yourself, they are in no worse of a condition of going down than ATI was for the many, many years they were providing lackluster solutions and support.
The battle is in the OEM segment, not performance crown. Thats the area that has made ATI their money (I have many computers with integrated ATI chips)and what NV has been trying to chip away at since their conception in the 90s.
If you are referring to Abit leaving NV for ATI, well NV also picked up Epox instead as a GPU partner.

My card of choice at the moment is the 5900NU. But I'd rather wait and get a FULL DX9 card that supports PS 3.0, not 2.0 like all the current implementations support (unified vertex/pixel shaders IIRC), after the two 'biggies' are released this year and things are much clearer.

----
Yeah, thats right. I support the NV/AMD/IBM axis of evil.
 

cleeve

Illustrious
It's much simpler than that.

What happened was that Ati made better hardware than Nvidia. Plain and simple.

We'll see who comes out ahead in the next gen... it'll be a good fight... but this round is Ati's, and well deserved.

Nobody should belittle that.

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bigglesworth

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ATI really deserves all the accolades they have received since the release of the 9700. The performance jump at the time was nothing short of groundbreaking. It kinda reminds me of how the Chicago Bulls were unstoppable during the Michael Jordan days. Nobody had a chance against them. And it isn't like the other teams were bad, the Bulls were just too good, just like ATI was with the 9700.

So I wouldn't view it so much as Nvidia failed, it seemed more like ATI came up with a technological breakthrough. It is fair to mention the 5800 fiasco and missing a product cycle, though. So they lost some momentum there.

Nowadays the leader isn't so clear with the 5950 and 9800xt. Granted, in THEORY the 9800xt will smoke the 5950 in future DX9 games. But between nvidia driver optimizations and nvidia partnerships with game makers, I don't see this happening. There are just too many nvidia card owners out there to alienate by not optimizing your game to run well on nvidia cards.

Both cards are great. I feel pretty lucky to be a gamer these days.
 
There are just too many nvidia card owners out there to alienate by not optimizing your game to run well on nvidia cards.
Actually this is a false hope statement IMO. If you know enough about the runtime compiler it needs to be prepared to run the DX9 code, by telling it in advance what to do. This kind of optimization in the drivers will only occur in a few games with each release, and it won't happen until those optimizations arrive in the drivers. The only way for those to arrive before the game reaches stores is if it's a TWIMTBP title sponsored by nV and they had time with it. But even those are a minority of titles (more than anyone else though). In reality I would say a more accurate statement would be "there are just too many games for nvidia to account for them all in their run-time comiler optimizations or their TWIMTBP development program'. The most popular titles will get those optimizations either before or after release, but lesser titles will likely never get optimized. Likely future support/effort/resources for those optimizations will likely diminish over time to so it's unlikely to make it a good legacy product for DX9 games (although it may be a BETTER legacy product for DX9.1 depending on how that turns out).
The run time compiler does a great job at increasing speed while maintaining IQ, but don't be confused in thinking that the FX series' DX9 issues are fixed, they are simply being worked around very well. I still don't see that as an advantage, but it's mutch definitely better than the crutch it used to be.

I think ATI has had a lucky break (created by good engineering and planning choices [I think their marketing sux though]) to which nV rushed an answer and had a bunch of stumbling blocks, before getting their $hit together and coming up with a reasonable solution, a good piece of hardware (the FX5700U), and a good marketing strategy/card (the FX5900SE/XT). That lucky break for ATI has allowed them to take their time in responding to nV and also allowed them the luxury of dropping cards like the R400 (because it was seen as not powerful enough for the NV40) and moving on. The main thing is what you do with your opportunities.

2003 definitely goes to ATI, but as we near the next generation of cards I think the marketplace is closer than ever before for these two competitors. And when those new cards come out most people will forget the past and think 'Yeah I have your product in my machine now.... BUT... What have you done for me lately!'. People who enjoyed their experience of the past year with one or the other, or prefer a set of drivers, features, colours (whatever) <i>MAY</i> give that Mfr a bit of wiggle room (I'll give ATI +/- a few%) but unless they are blindly loyal most people will pick whichever solution best meets their needs.
I have a feeling the next round will offer ALOT of interesting difference. Architecture alone is very different, and we may see one card annihilate the other in one game/benchmark and then in the next the exact opposite happening. One may play to greater Vertex Shader power, and the other may be better at Pixel Shader functions. One may be noticeably better at PS2.0/VS2.0, but then be dreadful with PS/VS3.0. Who knows, they could also be so envenly matched that it would make an R9600XT/FX5700U comparison look easy.
I think the hardest thing for early adopters will be trying to filter out the noise of all the PR from any kind fo objective/relevant information, which likely won't appear until long after the cards have been sold. Like the early DX9 cards before any DX9 games (I don't think anyone still thinks the FX5600Ultra Rev.2 is a better card than the R9600Pro, although even I was willing to conceed that early on). Thankfully the PCI-EX cards (like the R423/Loki) won't come out until a little while after the NV40 and R420 have already been poked and proded.

I just hope neither GW nor CoolS take that opportunity to get one before me (unless the R423 is faster of course)! :evil:


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! - <font color=green>RED </font color=green> <font color=red> GREEN</font color=red> GA to SK :evil:
 

JP5

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People are saying that the next round of cards will be evolutionary and provide huge jumps in framerates. Though I think I've heard that tune before...
 
Well the last generation provided huge jumps. The R8500 versus R9700Pro, HUGE leap. nVidia's experience has been different due to the strengths of the GF4ti in predominantly DX7/8 games without AA/AF (which doesn't play to the FX's strengths either). But even the GF4ti to FX5800U is a noticeable leap under many conditions.

If the jump from R3XX to R4XX is as big as the last one I'd be MORE than happy, however I don't even expect that much of a boost. But it will be much larger, IMO, than an R9700P to R9800XT, which rememebr were only refreshes.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! - <font color=green>RED </font color=green> <font color=red> GREEN</font color=red> GA to SK :evil:
 
Yeah, and if the 90-120 days from tape out to finished board holds true then that would mean early to late march/april instead of april/may. Still doesn't seem that promising though. Hopefully they are at a slightly quicker than normal pace, without being 'rushed' like the FX5800 series. I was kind of hoping to see something by the end of next month, and something in stores by mid march, anything afterwards is Q2 of the year, and technically Q3 for ATI (not sure when nV's financial quarters fall). ATI said they would be out by ealry to mid Q2 just recently.

Oh well I'm used to delays for these products. Heck the PCI-EX versions will be delayed even more. Oh well so be it.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! - <font color=green>RED </font color=green> <font color=red> GREEN</font color=red> GA to SK :evil:
 

cleeve

Illustrious
If NV40 is already on it's second stepping, I find it funny that we haven't gotten wind of amazing performance claims yet.

Remember the 5800? Same kind of understatedness a couple months before it was released. Yet it's predecessors (the Geforce4 Ti and Radeon 9700) both had tons of hype before they appeared.

Means either one of two things: Either the NV40 isn't all that revolutionary, or the major players are holding their cards tight to their chests.

Same thing with R400, it's been in development a helluva long time now, still no whiffs of performance. My gut feeling tells me that the specs may be impressive but the next gen might be quite evolutionary... think about it: same DirectX version, probably the same memory bus (256 bit - probably coupled with DDR2). Sure, more pipelines, but I bet the lion's share of performance increase will come from architecture optimizations and different techniques (i.e. I'll be surprised if Nvidia doesn't modify their AA methods to be more competitive visually with Ati's).

Should be interesting in the months ahead, but I'm predicting solidly <b>evolutionary</b>... and not <b>Revolutionary</b>... hardware with R420 and Nv40.

Of course, you guys will quote me on that if I'm way off. :wink:

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Well we aleady do 'know' the following about them;

For the pixel shader pipelines the R42X is supposed be a 1 X 16 architecture, whereas the NV40 is supposed to be 2 x 6 or 2x8.

Both are supposed to support PS/VS 3.0.

Both are supposed to use very rarified memory for their top end cards. 1600mhz (GDDR3?).

However I doubt we will be able to tell much about performance until we get them onto THG and others' benches to test.

The thing that gets me the most is the different paths for the pixel shader architecture. Could offer some interesting benifits and idssadvantages from design to design.

Anywhoo, I think both companies are going to keep these very tight secrets because it is such a big step and such a close race for supremacy. Supposedly the early leaks about the NV40 caused ATI to cancel the R400 and move on to the R42X series because it would have been outperformed. That's the kind of information a company would like to keep from it's competitors.

The hype will come once there are benchmarks to compare. Expect even more PR than either the R9700 or FX5800. Hopefully not as much controversy.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! - <font color=green>RED </font color=green> <font color=red> GREEN</font color=red> GA to SK :evil:
 

cleeve

Illustrious
On my theory that the next gen cards won't be a massive increase in performance, more evolutionary that revolutionary.

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GeneticWeapon

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However I doubt we will be able to tell much about performance until we get them onto THG and others' benches to test.
[H] will probably be one of the first to bench them, and out those who usually get them first, I like/trust [H]'s reviews.



<b>I help because you suck</b>
 
I agree with you for the most part, but Digit-life does have a habit of getting stuff first (remember their post and retraction of the R9800XT results 12hrs before the NDA expired [oops]). And I like their reviews (not that I don't like [H]'s [I especially like [H]'s histograms]). I'd say those are my two favs.

Also Anandtech seems to be getting early cracks at exposure by nV, so the NV40 may come from them first. But I do have a credibility gap when I look at Anandtech.

I'd also add xbit-labs and nVnews as two pretty nice reviews, but yes they are usually one or two steps behind everyone else, but they are a good thing afterward. Extremetech and B3D do tend to do good IQ comparisons after the fact too.

The thing is, I think this round, very early we will be able to tell the difference between old and new, if not the difference between both of the new.


- You need a licence to buy a gun, but they'll sell anyone a stamp <i>(or internet account)</i> ! - <font color=green>RED </font color=green> <font color=red> GREEN</font color=red> GA to SK :evil: