Radeon 9500 graphics £69+VAT

Discussion in 'Shopping, Deals, Discounts & Bargains' started by Rob.Screene, Aug 1, 2003.

  1. Rob.Screene

    Rob.Screene
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    Noticed on http://www.scan.co.uk/todayonly/
    Plus £10 shipping and VAT.

    I need a new card for a server, so that can have the previous Radeon 7200 DDR. I wonder if I'll see the reported improvement in PQ?

    Factor on another £30 for a Zalman VGA heatsink if the fan is very noisy (I sometimes listen to music with the Barco projector off!).

    regards,
    Rob.
     
  2. Boris Blank

    Boris Blank
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    Excellent price Rob.

    I do find my 9500 "noisy" - but only because everything else is basically silent. Try it before buying the Zalman just in case the noise level is ok for you.
    Regards,
    Paul
     
  3. Big Adam

    Big Adam
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    You pays your money.....

    Scam have the WORST reputation in the IT retail industry for customer service.

    It's a good deal, if you get your item and if it works.

    Personally, I wouldn't risk it.

    Big A
     
  4. dannyc

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  5. DownToTheBone

    DownToTheBone
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    I've used Scan a number of times and NEVER had a problem.

    DTTB
     
  6. drphibes

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    I think the general opinion on Scan is that they are ok at selling you items but if any of your parts go faulty they can be a bit of a nightmare for getting things sorted.

    Drphibes
     
  7. Rob.Screene

    Rob.Screene
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    Thanks for the 9500/9600 tip, but 3d performance is totally unused in this htpc.

    The important thing I think is the RV300 core, just like the 9700's, with full DirectX9 support; good for DVD playback. Also a 0.15-micron chip should run relatively cool. http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.html?i=1656&p=2

    It just has 4 of the 8 hardware pipelines disabled by the driver. Apparently these can be re-enabled to make it work as a PRO if that it important, way faster than a 9600 PRO, whereas the 9600's only have 4 pipelines period.
    ref: http://www.tomshardware.com/graphic/20030416/radeon_9600-01.html
    http://www6.tomshardware.com/graphic/20030416/radeon_9600-10.html

    It arrived Friday, next working day as promised. Something like a "colorpower radeon 9500 evil soldier", I forget the oem name already!

    Download catalyst 3.4 drivers ready, Removed radeon 7200 under device manager. Swapped radeon cards, connected aux power jumper, booted, ran cat 3.4 installation. Re-added custom resolutions in powerstrip; 1440x960 1440x864, etc.

    Result! No hickups!

    A small but noticeable picture quality improvement for desktop over the Radeon 7200 DDR. I can see slightly less scanline noise when 4 inches away scrutenising a 7ft projection screen(!) This is a good sign for the VGA signal quality.

    Haven't watched any films via it and the holo3d and I don't have TheaterTek installed so can't confirm or deny any software mpeg decoding or overlay improvements, that others have mentioned.

    Haven't noticed the fan noise compared to my Fanless 7200, but then again the HTPC noise is only really a problem when the projector is off and I'm listening to music off the htpc. The card, cables and bundled DVI to VGA adapter for second VGA output look pretty much identical to the Connect3D 9500 here: http://www.bit-tech.net/review/168/3

    Oh and it came with a WinDVD 4.0 oem cd, so I might try that in my desktop pc one day (as sonic/theatertek/windvd3.0 all seem to have overlay create errors on my main work desktop pc).

    Recommended.

    I've had good and bad experiences with Scan, over the 30-ish orders with them, nothing too terrible, most annoying was a customer service line that it took 30 mins a time to get through to, but that was a few years ago.

    I too prefer dabs.com or komplett.co.uk if the price is close.
     
  8. John R Baker

    John R Baker
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    I have had nothing bust problems in dealing with SCAN.

    They often miss-advertise products, and when you point it out and ask for a refund, it becomes very-very difficult.

    I would recommend ebuyer.co.uk
     
  9. Peter Parker

    Peter Parker
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    The 9600 is slightly cheaper at ebuyer - £90.

    Rob - have you done anything to quieten down the htpc? I found that replacing the PSU fan with an 80mm Papst equvalent from www.quietpc.com made a lot of difference.

    Gary.
     
  10. Rob.Screene

    Rob.Screene
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    Hi Gary,
    Yes, I'm running a Zalman 300w quiet psu and a fanmate controller on the cpu fan to slow it down a little. No case fan seems needed or wanted. A few slabs of sound insulation behind the front of the DIGN case face help tame much of the noise.

    Hard disk whine is the main noise, as I'm running a 40GB and 25GB disk in there at the moment. I have a surprisingly loud 5400rpm maxtor 80GB from server which was spinning down and noted spin-up smart errors. I'm hoping it'll be fine in the HTPC, as it also has a matching silentdrive enclosure, making it very quiet. Nothing to risk by ghosting the 40GB system drive on to it and trying it I guess.

    I may also underclock and undervolt the 2GHz p4 cpu, as the holo3dgraph and Xcard do all the work in the HTPC now.

    cheers,
    Rob.
     
  11. Kingy

    Kingy
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    A little bit off topic here Rob, but you should try the omega drivers for your radeon. They are tweaked versions of the standard catalyst and performance can be improved slightly yet again :)

    Omega Corner
     
  12. Peter Parker

    Peter Parker
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    Hi Rob,

    sounds sweet. :)

    I've just treated myself to a KustomPC case, but one of the cheaper AV looking ones.

    I find the Seagate Barracuda drives to be silent, so maybe getting one of those will cure your problem.

    I have an AMD 2600 running at 2000 in my desktop machine, and it ticks over at around 40c with standard fan. I'm getting one of the Coolermaster 'silent fans' (actauly 29db which is noisier than my radial fin fan at 22db), and i'll probably get a variable fan controller and/or a Papst 80mm fan to reduce the fan noise down further on my new htpc. The Cooler master fan is a good price:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/customer/prod...2hvd19wcm9kdWN0X292ZXJ2aWV3&product_uid=48547

    Not as quiet as the Zalman, but with a Papst and/or fan speed controller it'll probably be a good alternative.

    I'll be getting the rest of the bits for my case on Monday, but if I can hear any noise, I think I'll try your idea of soundproofing the front of the case. My current htpc is near silent from the seating position, so hoping this one will be the same. :)

    Cheers.

    Gary.
     
  13. Rob.Screene

    Rob.Screene
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    I too agree it's slightly "noisy", not too bad, but not silent.

    I replaced the makeshift fiberglass "loft insulation" in black bin liner blocks that I did have in the HTPC case with the 3 types of sound deadening in the PpowerSnooze kit from http://www.quietpc.com/uk/materials.php (enough for about 2 or just 3 PC's BTW, needed some for a work server!)

    This helped hush the drive noise, but last night I occasionally noticed a strange whine between music tracks, poped the case open and held still the Radeon 9500 fan and yup, that was the cause.

    I just orderd the big Zalman VGA heatsink http://www.quietpc.com/uk/vgamb.php?#zm80ahp
    from aria.co.uk as it's £29.36 delivered and I like their parcel tracking link and have had good experiences with them.

    cheers,
    Rob.
     
  14. dannyc

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    Hey Rob,

    maybe you should have just gone for a 9600 non pro in the first place:nono:

    Just Kiddin:clap:

    Dan
     
  15. Jeff

    Jeff
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    The Sapphire 9600 non pro (fan-less) is available from Dabs for £94 incl VAT. I would go for Sapphire over any of the other powered by makes.
     
  16. Rob.Screene

    Rob.Screene
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    Yeah, probably!

    I'd read the 9600's were a value core revision with a much smaller chip die size and it sounds like I wrongly assumed the boards would have corners cut too, going down to a more mass-market cost of manufacture.

    It was rather fun putting the big Zalman heatpipe heatsinks on the card though, quite a work of art!

    You live and learn.

    cheers,
    Rob.
     

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