Integrated Graphics vs Budget ATI and Nvidia Video CardsWed, Jul 12, 2006 - 12:00 AM
Here at Legit Reviews we usually review computer hardware directed at the gaming/enthusiast market. The hardware comes with all of the bells and whistles, but the price tag can often cause sticker shock for many around the world. A quick trip to your local Walmart’s electronics isle will put things into perspective for many as the shelves are lined with GeForce 6200TC video cards. With the bulk of America shopping at Walmart on a weekly bassis I feel it is time we stop and take a look at something everyone can buy. Today we take a look at integrated graphics versus the value priced graphics cards in an article that many review sites wouldn’t touch. To top it all off we compare these budget cards with a budget motherboard with integrated graphics from ECS.
The gaming life of a PC enthusiast is a great one. You have all of the latest and greatest parts and all of the state of the art PC games run easily on your hardware. But let’s take a step back for a minute….because not everyone is lucky enough to have the latest and greatest video card in their system. Hundreds of HP, Compaq, and Dell PC’s ship every day with nothing more than on-board video and when it comes time to relax and play a game, it’s ill equipped to handle it.
Today we want to look at the current state of the value line video cards and see just what kind performance you gain for just a little investment. This is far from comprehensive because let’s face it, it’s not likely that you’re going from integrated video to a high end solution. In this review we’ve got just two add-in boards, one from ATI and one from NVIDIA, and of course a motherboard with integrated video.
Something a little out of place in a budget test is AMD’s fastest socket 939 processor, the FX-60. There are several reasons we are using this, the biggest of which is to remain somewhat consistent. Our video card articles lately have featured a 4800+ processor so the FX-60 is just a small increase at best. Another reason is that we wanted to show pure video card performance here and not be bottlenecked by the CPU. This gives you a no BS assesment of video card performance in the best case scenario.