For those looking for a decent high end card, your best option is still going to be a X800XL. Although unlike from our last price guide, the AGP version has gone up in price about $30. The cheapest one we're seeing this week is the ATI Radeon X800XL 256MB [RTPE: 100-435508] for $278.00.

Those of you who were fortunate enough to upgrade to a PCI-E board are in luck today. The Connect3D Radeon X800XL 256MB [RTPE: 3028C] is on sale for $130.00 (after MIR -- to qualify for the $100 MIR, you must purchase a second CrossFire edition graphics card). However - if you are set on going ATI, make sure to check out our info with regard to the Connect3D X800GTO and the Sapphire X800GTO^2 on the next page.

The AGP version of the ATI X800XT 256MB All-In-Wonder [RTPE: 100-714200] is at an awesome price of $280.00 (after MIR); about a reduction of $7.00 off of its original price of $300.00 (before MIR). ATI is known for it's fantastic A-I-W cards, so if you're looking for such a creature, this may be a deal for you. However, we suggest that if you're looking for a more permanent solution, you should look into a separate PCI TV tuner card. With the relatively low cost of upgrading a tuner, and their relative longevity in terms of product cycle, an A-I-W card only makes sense if you really enjoy some of the more unique features rather than just straight hardware tuner support. By the way, don't forget that ATI has a new A-I-W launch in the next week.

For about $240, the ASUS GeForce 6800GT 256MB (PCI-E) [RTPE: EN6800GT/2DT/256] is a super deal which has seen a price decrease of approximately $97; definitely something to consider. If you're looking to go with a SLI setup, we would recommend you look into the eVGA 7800GT we recommended on the previous page. For $140 less than two 6800GTs, you'd be able to get roughly equal performance to slightly better performance. At about the same price, a single 7800GTX will usually outperform SLI'ed 6800GTs and you have the future option of SLI.

With all the competitive deals right now on the ultra high end and the mid range, it makes almost no sense to buy a card in this range right now!

Index Mid Range Graphics
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  • mjh - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    I have noticed that heat isn't an issue with the unlocked Sapphire Radeon X800 GTO2 card.
  • AtaStrumf - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    Yea I've been wondering that too. X850XT PE (Mine OCs to PE speeds) has a two slot cooler I think, so runing at those speeds while still stable, might not be too good for the card in the long run. X800XL runing at 400/500, which is about the same as X800GTO2 at default, however still has the normal cooler, buuuuut it may be a different core made with a process, 0.11 u I think, so the question still remains??? Mine gets quite hot after a few hours of CS:S. Somewhere in the neighbourhood of 60-70 C (hard to judge from the graph).
  • JarredWalton - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    X800XL uses .11 micron, but without the low-k dielectric material of the .13 micron process. In the end, it appears that the X850 and even X800XT cores are able to clock higher than the X800XL. GTO cores can be R423 or R428 I think, so you could end up with a card capable of X800XT performance or one capable of X850XTPE performance depending on luck of the draw.
  • JarredWalton - Monday, November 14, 2005 - link

    R428 should be "R480", of course. :)
  • lexmark - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    Is heat an issue with unlocked cards?
  • Madellga - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    Please be aware that this GTO is based on the X800, not X850 family.

    It is also easy to unlock the 16p and I could reach 560GPU/580 with stock cooler.
    Awesome, very good bang for the buck.

    The X850XT mod is for the Sapphire GTO2 only. At the end it doesn't really matter which one you get, as the difference in clock is minimal and they will benchmark very close to each other.
  • toyota - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    "You'll find the newly released GeForce 6200 GS cards in stock at a few vendors." is that supposed to be 6800 GS?
  • JarredWalton - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    Yes - fixed.
  • DrZoidberg - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    Wow, is this even better deal than unlocked GTO2? Connect3D Radeon X800XL 256MB for $130.00 after rebate. Nice!! Too bad im in Australia. Anyone can sell it to me on ebay? :)
  • DrZoidberg - Sunday, November 13, 2005 - link

    actually just read the fineprint. Notice: Purchase of an additional CrossFire Edition Graphics Card is required in order to qualify for $100 rebate.

    So its 229 + 129=358 for 2 x800xl. And then i have to buy a crossfire motherboard for this to work? Maybe anandtech can mention the fineprint cause its a bit misleading in the price guide to not mention u have to purchase a 2nd x800xl to qualify.

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