Nov 27, 2009

*UPDATED Jan 1st, 2010*

So, after selling the Quadro FX5800, I went back to my 9500GT. Then I recently upgraded from the GeForce 9500GT to an ATI Radeon HD4650. I did get a decent performance jump - but it left me wanting more. I barely got to raise settings, but the frame rates were better. The main annoyance of the upgrade, though, was the ATI Catalyst system. It's buggy, crashed explorer a few times, and was just "weird". The card was around 73 bucks total. So, I took it back today looking for something better. I found an NVIDIA GeForce 9800GT 1gb PCI-E2.0 that came out to 80 bucks after tax. WOW...what a performance leap! I get to max out settings in Fallout 3, Far Cry 2, Oblivion, Bioshock and more, all at 1920x1080, and using DirectX 10!

NVIDIA's drivers are great, and leave nothing to be desired. Seriously, this is why I stick with NVIDIA. The 9800 was the best hardware purchase I've ever made, hands down. Cuda support, PhysX, HDMI, full HD video acceleration, etc. I'm fully satisfied with this card! While it doesn't give the same performance when working with multiple PSD's with files sizes in the gigabyte range and greater, for gaming it's sweet, ESPECIALLY at the price point! Pics of my setup:

The new card itself:

Main PC
-Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium x64 (main OS)/Ubuntu Linux (secondary OS)
-Intel Pentium Dual Core E5200 (45nm, 2.8ghz per core, 2mb L2 cache, 800mhz FSB)
-6gb Patriot PC2-6400 800mhz RAM
-PNY NVIDIA GeForce 9800GT xlr8 (PCIe 2.0, 1024mb, SLI-ready)
-Creative X-Fi Platinum sound card (24-bit, 64mb audio XRAM, EAX Advanced HD 7.1/5.1 audio, front panel with hi-z and lo-z mic inputs/outputs, mini MIDI inputs/outputs, S/PDIF optical digital inputs/outputs, coaxial digital inputs/outputs, media remote)
-3.5" Multi card reader drive
-Lite-On DVD+-R/RW CD-R/RW drive
-Seagate 250gb SATAII hard drive (OS, games)
-Seagate 250gb PATA hard drive (pictures)
-WD MyBook 500gb external drive (movies/tv)
-Digital Research 320gb external drive (archive)
-Maxtor OneTouch 250gb external drive (incremental backups)
-Acer 23" LCD monitor (1920x1080, HDMI, DVI and VGA inputs, HDCP compliant)
-HP 17" LCD monitor (1280x1024, DVI and VGA inputs)
-Logitech S510 Wireless Desktop
-Wacom Bamboo tablet
-Ratpadz GS gaming mouse pad
-Canon MP250 printer/copy/scanner


-Ubuntu Linux (main OS)/Windows XP Home (secondary OS)
-Intel Atom processor (1.6ghz)
-1gb DDR2 667mhz RAM
-160gb hard drive
-Intel integrated graphics
-10.1" LED backlit widescreen LCD (1024x600)
-Integrated HD webcam
-WD Passport 80gb external drive (backups)

Sound System
-Panasonic 1000W home theater receiver (Dolby Digital, Pro-Logic, DTS sound decoders, 5.1 channel, composite audio inputs, 2 coaxial digital inputs, 2 S/PDIF optical inputs, external wireless speaker ready.)
-2 Sony full-range center speakers
-Sony front L+R mid-high range bookshelf speakers
-Insignia L+R mid surround speakers
-Panasonic rear L+R satellite surround speakers
-Panasonic subwoofer

All of it connected to an APC Uninterruptable Power Supply