This is a follow-up to my What’s Up with the X1950 Shortage.
Note: Exhange rate used is PHP46 : USD1.
My dad and I went to Greenhills last Sunday. It was a long afternoon, literally zig-zagging the 3rd floor of V-Mall, moving from stall to stall as I searched for the elusive X1950 Pro. I had strict cost limits in my mind. I was looking for a GeCube X1950 Pro 256/512 that cost around P6450 (~$140) or P7650/(~$166) respectively. Those were the prices of Rising Sun before shortage struck the market.
AMD/ATI released an updated driver, nicknamed “Shoot ‘Em Up”. This is version 7.10 and AMD promises performance increases up to 80%. I have to agree with the community that this driver is encouraging Crossfire configurations, especially with the HD2000 cards. I’ve seen benchmarks (Sorry, but I lost them. I’ll include them when I find them again), and while single cards did not improve much, significant improvements were seen in Crossfire configurations. For an HD2600XT in Crossfire, gains were at least 200 points more in 3DMark06, and real-world applications squeezed a few more frames.
Given the shortage of X1950s and the surge of performance from the HD2600XTs, buying a pair of HD2600XTs in Crossfire came into view. So I canvassed online for good HD2600XTs. Two hundred fifty six megabytes were good. I noticed that the lowest price I could get for such would be P4500 (~$98) and this price is based on PCHub’s PowerColor offer.
After a good of rounding Greenhills, all I could find were overpriced PowerColor HD2600XTs at P5350 (~$116) and rip-off Sapphire X1950 256MB Pros. One store offered it at an outrageous ~P12,000 (~$261) and another store at a tempting P8,600 (~$187). No amount of haggling could bring those prices down to what I want.
There was a glitter of hope with ABM Computers, when they tried to order the X1950 Pros. I pressured them to get it for me by Monday. Next day, zip. No X1950 for me.
I’m having a dilemma right now.
- An HD2600XT in CF, as noted, does not perform as well as an X1950 Pro. However, new 7.10 drivers might have changed that. No benchmarks to prove that yet, though.
- I only game at 1280 x 960 at the most. Will Crossfire be worth it? I don’t really play the latest and greatest games, but the tactical shooters I’m anticipating are graphical heavyweights
- Crossfire = Bragging rights!
- Cost, cost, cost. A single X1950 Pro is cheaper than an HD2600XT CF. But a Crossfire rig is a Crossfire rig. And an XT is an XT versus a “Pro”.
I’m afraid that if I go for a Crossfire rig, I’ll be having some regrets for the price I paid. The X1950 Pro would be best, but would leave me yearning for more.
It really looks like X1950 Pro is a really good contender and that’s what I’ve been after in the first place. The HD2600XT is just a flashy, expensive alternative with uncertain performance. But we have to note here that the encompassing truth in these entries is the X1950 shortage. There are no X1950s to be found, I’m really having trouble finding the right card for the right price.
Wish me luck and I’ll be posting back on my Searching for the X1950 adventure. If you have any feedback, advice, constructive reactions, opinion, then feel free to comment.