October 18th, 2006, 07:53 PM #1
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- Oct 2006
6600gt (sm3.0) or x800xt PE (sm2.0b)
hi all. i currently run a geforce 6600gt 128mb agp card. i understand this is probably the best mid-range gfx card. I run it, reliably overlocked, at 540mhz/965mhz. I know that this card uses shader model 3.0. Most games i play run really well even at 1280x1024 however, i have the chance to buy a radeon x800 xt PE (platinum edition) 256mb which i know is a much faster/better card. My question is: even thought the x800 xt pe is a better card, seeing as most of my games run well, will the shift from sm3.0 to s.2.0b have much affect on my gaming? will the image quality drop much??
October 19th, 2006, 10:39 AM #2
That's a somewhat complicated question. It depends really on the games that you're running, -if the game actually uses sm 3.0 shaders vs. 2.0/b shaders, -does your system/game setup run 3.0 at all times, etc... etc...
You may also want to search through the forums at: http://www.rage3d.com
Personally, I think the short answer is no. You can go to a lot of sites and see the 'static' difference between the shader implementations from screenshots. But whether or not you actually notice those differences (if at all) while playing an online or offline FPS is another thing.
This was the big argument when I bought my 6800 Ultra OC awhile ago (upon release). The pro-sm3.0 camp line was: 32-bit precision/efficiency and better effects. The con-sm3.0 line was: no card powerful enough at the time to run sm3.0, 16/24-bit precision fine right now and not many games out with it. The first two cons were the reasons ATI did not include sm3.0 on 8XX series of cards. Where the two pros were why nVidia went with sm3.0 on their 66/6800 series cards.
I would say, if you can get a real great deal on the ATI card, buy it- it'll last a bit longer than the 6600GT you presently have. If not, I'd just save the money for something in the nV 78/7900 line or ATI X1900 line...New Dad since 07/06/2005
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