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Old 07-25-2005, 01:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I am really leaning towards getting an x800xl, but how much of an improvement would it be over my 6600gt? Also, what does pixel shader 3 do and is it a really big deal if i dont have it?
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Old 07-25-2005, 01:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Shader Model 3 is the brick and mortar of future games. What makes it such a big deal is that game developers are NOT using Shader Model 2 which the X800XL supports. Developers are ONLY using SM1.1 for DX8, and SM3. So basically, if you don't have a SM3 card, you are stuck playing games in DX8, which doesn't look near as good, and has a performance disadvantage. There are a few games, ie Far Cry, that make use of Shader Model 2.0 allowing DX9 to be used on the X800XL. For the most part though, future games will only feature support for SM1.1 and 3.0.
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Old 07-25-2005, 02:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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IMO, Shader Model 3.0 is a damn big improvement over 2.0, and I think it makes a big difference.

Take a look at one you would be losing when you don't have support for SM3: http://www.hardocp.com/article.html?art=NjA5

It really all depends upon how much you value graphic quality. Look at that link I posted. You will see that the difference is extremely distinct.
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Old 07-25-2005, 02:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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That article compared SM1.1 to 3.0, not SM2.0 to 3.0. However, that is a good comparison to make because future games will only support 1.1 and 3.0.

SM2.0 is much, much better than 1.1, but not as good as 3.0. The major thing you will be losing by not having SM3.0 support is support for HDR rendering, which will be a big deal in the upcomming "The Lost Coast" mod for HL2. You will need a SM3.0 capable card to experience HDR on that game. SM2.0 cards will be able to use a "bloom" effect.

However, since future games will not include support for SM2.0, you will be stuck between 1.1 and 3.0. And believe me, you don't want to be playing these future DX9 titles in DX8.1 compatability mode, which you will be doing if you get the X800XL.
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Old 07-25-2005, 02:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Yes SM3 is great

If you want a Nividia SM3 card that compares to the x800XL, take a look at the normal 6800's as their under 200$
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Old 07-25-2005, 03:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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x800XL would kick *** if they had PSM3.0, but too bad... the X900's will, so heads up!
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Old 07-25-2005, 03:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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SM 3.0. The R520 or X900s will and i think that they'll definitely kick nvidia's *** especially with crossfire.

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Old 07-25-2005, 03:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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i really want to see 2.0 right next to 3.0 but i guess you made up my mind for me . How much do you think I could sell an evga 6600gt that was never overclocked and still has the original packaging and everything (cables, manual, etc)
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Old 07-25-2005, 03:13 PM   #9 (permalink)
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i might buy it
ill pm you

and to go with thread
dont get a x800 go for a 6800gt
pixel shader 3 is a big deal
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Old 07-25-2005, 03:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Yet again, I have to correct the hoards of people who swarm these threads and give false information. PS3 is a DirectX 9c instruction, previous versions of DX(aka b) do not support this instruction, and thus, if your card does not support PS3, it will revert to DirectX9b, not DX8 or whatever other myth.

The vanilla 6800 is a steal right now and if you're lucky enough to softmod it to a GT you'll be getting wayyyy more than you paid for. My vote is for the 6800
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