Seeking advice on mid-priced quality card
I'm upgrading my old PIII computer. I've already purchased a new mobo (MSI board with i845E), CPU (PIV 2.4/533) and some DDR RAM, but I also thought I'd upgrade my graphics card while I'm at it. What I have now is a Diamond Stealth III S540, which by today's standard is a slow POS, and by any standard has less than perfect drivers. I'm not really much of a gamer: my primary use for the computer is multitrack audio recording/editing, which is why stability and good drivers is a priority. Although when I'm not doing that (or surfing the web), it would be cool to be able to run games such as, say, Sim City 4 with acceptable framerates. (I doubt SC4 will even run on the old card... no D3D support... :-p) I have a 17" monitor, so my resolution rarely goes above 1024x768, though I do use the 1280x1024 setting when doing the audio editing part. But I don't need gaming performace under extreme resolutions.
Basically, what I'm looking for is a card that:
* Doesn't cost a fortune!
* Delievers good picture and decent framerates in newer games at 1024x768.
* Preferably doesn't have a fan, or at least a VERY quiet cooling system (I've become a bit anal with this lately).
* Has good drivers.
My price limit would be, say, US $175-$200 (excluding VAT) or thereabouts. But if the perfect solution costs a tad more, I've got the money - I just don't feel like spending a fortune on a piece hardware I don't really use that much...
So what do you think? Chipsets? Brands? Any suggestions or directions would be most appreciated!