Video cards... query from the looney bin



New Member
Unfortunately I've been out of "mainstream" PC world for too long (a year) and I find when I return that my simple life of easy research and few options when it comes to upgrading to a new system has blown away into a plethora of choices in a myriad of designs. I've gone crazy.


Video card. Bottom line. Money is no object as long as it doesn't go much over $250 (I know the same card will be $100 in six months, but oh well).

I do SOME gaming, but I do a lot of work in photoshop and other such programs. The games I play are your typical high-intensity games (at work of course) that won't run on my current setup (a P166 nonMMX with 64M ram and a Matrox Millenium 4meg.. circa December 1996!!!)

I'm upgrading to a celeron 466 system and need to pick out an AGP card.

Viper 770? 770 Ultra? ASUS 3800? 3800 Ultra? Matrox G400 MAX? 3d V3 3500?

Each card has its plusses but I don't know which one is worth its 180-250 pricetag. I'm a fan of Matrox because of my current card, but I keep hearing the drivers are slowing it down...

Someone rescue me here...

[email protected]


New Member
I'd get the G400 MAX. The drivers are pretty solid, only OpenGL could use some improvement (it's already faster in 1024*768 32bits rendering than a TNT2 Ultra!!). It has the fastest 2D around and also has the best imagequality around in both 2D and 3D. It's supports Dualhead (maybe useful to you?) and I like the Matrox quality. So my advice is get the Matrox G400 MAX. You'll love it.


New Member
I would have to agree. For the type of uses you mentioned, the G400MAX would seem to be the best choice. Its 3D isnt quite as fast as a TNT2, but it can support higher resolutions, with higher image quality than the TNT2. Plus, as was mentioned, the Dual Head may be something you might enjoy.

I know this is exactly what you dont want to hear
, but the nVIDIA NV10 and 3dfx's newest offerings are just around the corner. If its at all possible, it may be worth your while to wait for one of those.

"In the computer industry, there are three kinds of lies;
lies, damn lies, and benchmarks."


New Member
Unfortunatle I'm not in a holding pattern. My current system is now "minimum requirements" and my video card isn't 3D-savvy (matrox millenium, the original).

I'm strongly leaning towards the G400MAX _because_ of the dualhead... buuuttttt...

I just got off their site where first I noticed no updated drivers for WinNT... and second.. their support of DualHead under NT will NOT support independant resolutions/frequencies between the displays!! I don't feel like buying a 2nd monitor identical to my main, when I have this cheesy POS 15" that's been collecting dust for two years now... but it can't handle anything over 640x480 without fritzing out.

So.. given Matrox's poor NT support, is this still the final recommendation? Or does another card now look like a better choice?

I'm going to call Matrox tomorrow and get "their official stance" on the driver issue as well as the poor DualHead support for NT... but in the meantime, I'm still open for suggestions. Is the Asus 3800 Ultra going to outperform the G400Max in my environment?