New low-end AGP comer



New Member
If you're tight on butget, forget any reviewed VGA cards shown in the magazine. Price may go as high as a processor. The only hope ... OEM branded VGA card or a original but unpopular one. Recently, many mainboard manufacturers started to get involved in the VGA chips industry, the best exp. : Intel. These new chips, if implemented properly with good BIOS and drivers, will perform beyond our expectation. Usually, the top winner in VGA cards competition which is 2-3 times more expensive than the 'regular' one, won yield a result twice better than these cheap VGA cards. These new AGP cards come from SiS, Intel, Asus ...
Usually, these AGP cards are of 2D/3D based solution of mixed performance. But in terms of cost /performance they're better choices for some well known products like ATI's Rage, Matrox Milliniem ... From the tech. spec, I found that their raw performance are only slightly lower than their expensive counterparts. Moreover, they provide some 3D features like Z-buffering, trilinear filtering, texture mapping... along with ample of frame buffers(RAM). Some even offer internal bus speed from 83 - 100 Mhz. Any opinion / experience on these cards?

[This message has been edited by OP (edited 12-13-98).]

[This message has been edited by OP (edited 12-13-98).]


New Member
most of the old chips really suck but watch out for the rage 128 from ati, its supposed to come in lots of new oem systems and laptops


New Member
but you can always add voodoo2(s) for state of the art 3d performance, the 2d part is almost always fast enough....but that's not really cheap anymore


Seeing Mole
I agree.

I am on tight budget (as always) and I decided to go for an OEM I740 AGP card. It was really cheap and I'm happy with the performance. Although, since it's OEM, I can't use the BIOS upgrades provided by Intel. But their drivers works fine.

I've tested it with various games which used different API's and it worked quite alright. The framerates probably isn't as high as the more expensive cards, but the games were all very playable. The 2D performance is also good.

I did get what I paid for and I'm quite satisfied with it.

3D games played so far:

Mechwarrior 2 Mercenaries Titanium Edition
Final Fantasy VII
(Hardware support)

By the way, as far as I know, Asustek doesn't make own VGA chips. They're just OEM's for other chips manufacturer.

SiS do make VGA chips and they're probably most famous for making all those onboard VGA chips and chipsets for PCHIPS's motherboards. They also pioneered with the shared memory architechture where the onboard VGA would "share" (read: ripp you off) some of your system RAM.
However, as far as performance goes, SiS is the bottom of the lot. I'd even rate them worse than S3 when it comes to performance. The price however is dead cheap. But you really do get what you pay for.

Speaking of S3. Their cheap and crappy Virge chip should be avoided by anyone who is even half serious in playing 3D games. The Trio3D also doesn't cut it. They seems to make it quite good with the Savage3D chip however.