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Thread: Best cost/benefit AGP Video Card?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Metro Detroit, USA
    Posts
    15

    Best cost/benefit AGP Video Card?

    piggybacking off another thread that I had posted but have additional questions....

    I have the following hardware:
    Athlon T-Bird 1.4GHz (May soon upgrade to an XP2500+ or other if needed)
    Biostar M7VIG400
    768mb RAM (1-256 stick, 1-512 stick) PC2700
    ATI Sapphire Radeon 9000PRO 128mb video card (but soon to go!)
    Hauppauge HVR-1600
    Old School 32" tube TV with component (RGB) in

    Running WinXP SP3

    I am VERY inexperienced with this, and am pulling my hair out trying to get good drivers/encoders/decoders/codec/whatever I need. So, I am looking to buy something that gives me the most assurance that it'll work with the least headache.

    I am having the following 2 issues with my current setup -

    1 - Just got in my DVI-to-component cable, but all I don't get a recognizable picture. Lots of cyan colors, and in some instances (such as the XP bootup screen showing "starting windows") I can barely make out the display, but it's horrible. There are three vertical bands showing the startup screen as well. To clarify, I am not talking about a fuzzy picture, I am talking 99% unrecognizable picture. I putcahsed a cheap cable found HERE. I rushed to get it, and didn't really think...is this not working with my antique TV because it's not a HDTV? I figured component input is component input. I am running the latest Catalyst (6.something) off of the ATI site.

    2 - when watching live TV, if I pull up the guide at the bottom of the screen video gets really choppy and CPU maxes out. Otherwise, CPU while watching live TV is about 40%. Side note that I downloaded and installed a trial of SageTV, and using default settings (Sage decoder) I don't get any jumpiness with guides there. Other than the guide jumpiness in gbpvr, everything seems smooth and I am pleased. I like gvpvr MUCH better than Sage, so I'd really like to have it working well.

    So, my question to you...given that my motherboard has a few PCI (not PCI-E) and an AGP slot, what is the best (AGP or PCI) video card (new or used) that I can buy that is cost/benefit balanced? I'm looking for something with known drivers/codecs/encoders/decoders/whatever I need to have it work with my setup. Also, need to hook to component or 4-pin S-Video on the TV. Looking to go to a flat panel later this year, but don't need this box to run HD (I know my processor/motherboard probably can't handle HD anyway).
    Last edited by Atrus; 2010-01-06 at 02:44 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Gjovik, Norway - PAL
    Posts
    5,406
    I'm very pleased with my Asus 3450 card, good performance, dxva support and a fairly low price.

    "Show me your passport and I'll tell you who you are"
    (new Norwegian saying)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Ireland/UK
    Posts
    864
    I had an ATI HD2600XT AGP which worked perfectly at 720p resolution to my LCD TV. It struggled at 1080p resolution. It would play back 1080i content smoothly at 720p resolution though. DXVA wasn't a problem, low CPU on H264 and mpeg2, smooth news tickers on SD mpeg2 channels (all displayed at 720p resolution). So if you have a TV that cant even do that, you'll have no problem with one of these. No idea about non digital input TVs though as I used the DVI output with a DVI to HDMI cable.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    London
    Posts
    2,832
    I used a 9600pro sucessfully for a couple of years, then upgraded to a passively cooled 6600GT which gave a better picture (better colours and smoother playback). I upgraded the pc before I ever got to try them out on my LCD screen.

    This was all with 720x576 PAL with s-video out to a CRT using a good quality cable.

    With that mobo, I am not sure if going up any higher (7300, 2400, 3450) would bring much benefit. Depends on how much you are willing to spend.
    Silverstone LC17 Case,
    ASUS P5Q, Intel E7200, 4GB RAM
    Blackgold DVB-T2, ATI 7750, Windows 7 64-bit
    SAF codec pack,Sony 40" Z5500

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