Video Cards & Displays
Because a lot of new games are released around this time of year, the demand placed on our old video hardware sometimes is too much. Like many of us, we turn to upgrading our videocards. They’re the logical and more economical choice for improving game performance without having to upgrade the entire system.
The card that hits the sweet spot right now is the NVIDIA 6600GT. It has a great combination of performance and price that we haven’t seen since the Ti4200 days. As seen in our Half-Life 2 performance article, this card really performs well for just under $200.
Lowest price at publishing time: $184.00
If you want to go high-end and you can afford $500, then a card using ATI’s X800 XT will be a great choice. Gaming at 1600×1200 with all the filtering effects is just amazing. There is the NVIDIA 6800 Ultra as well that will perform nicely.
Both these cards can be hard to find at the moment and prices will reflect that supply.
Lowest price at publishing time:
We all sit in front of our computers longer than we care to admit. Because of this, sometimes we need to spoil ourselves (or others) with a nice display. How can you put a price on visual comfort?
The prices of LCD displays are dropping like stones. You can now buy a 17′ LCD display for the price of a 19′ CRT was a few months ago. If you’re looking to game on an LCD, you’ll want something with at least 16ms response time and at least 500:1 contrast.
This Samsung 17′ 172X fits the bill with 12ms response time and 500:1 contrast, but there are many others out there.
I really want one of these for Christmas, so I better start dropping hints to my honey now. 🙂
Lowest price at publishing time: $385.40
So you want something a little larger? How about this BenQ 19″ LCD with 450:1 contrast and 16ms response. The contrast may not as good as other models, but it makes up for it in price.
Lowest price at publishing time: $399.99
For those of you who like thinking bigger, maybe you can try on a nice DLP projector. This Toshiba has 800:1 contrast and 1024×768 resolution. Imagine watching your favorite DVD on that badboy! Of course the $2000+ price tag will hit you like a ton of bricks, but what’s a little money for years of visual ecstasy? 🙂
Lowest price at publishing time: $2049.95
If this Toshiba is too rich for your blood, try the Epson PowerLite S1. It has 800×600 resolution 500:1 contrast.
Lowest price at publishing time: $798.00