Which Graphic card?


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josho

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Nov 27, 2004
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#1
Hi ppl.

Can I ask which VGA card is better for doing photos?
I know each card had its limitation so I would like to know which can be count as at least a better card for doing photos?

Is MSI (Microstar) NX6600GT-VTD128 (GeForce 6600GT) 128MB DDR3 a good card?

Thanks.
 

nickmak

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Apr 16, 2004
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#2
A mid-range graphics card is ok... Just work on getting as much RAM as you can into your computer. PS takes more RAM than graphics.
 

josho

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#3
nickmak said:
A mid-range graphics card is ok... Just work on getting as much RAM as you can into your computer. PS takes more RAM than graphics.
how is it compare to Maxtro vga card? :cool:
 

#5
Adam Goi said:
For me if $$ is not an issue and I work mainly on images, I'll the Matrox Parhelia! ;)
That is a sweet card man. You can buy a very good Nikon lens too. But Matrox has always made great cards for graphic work. I am still using the G450 at my office.

Anyone here bought the Parhelia?

I use a Radeon 9550 with 256mb ram ($173) on board in my new home PC. This is my first VGA card outside numerous Matrox cards I have owned but I am still very impressed with its performance when coupled to my MagVision CRT monitor. With some minor calibration, the colours and refresh rate is more the able to meet my graphic design and manipulation needs. The 256mb does not do much for 2D graphic processing like those we do in Photoshop. They are more for 3D gaming use. So getting more system RAM for your PC is better. Most of the VGA cards that showcase their 3D capability don't play up on their ability to handle 2D graphics. Not that is it not good at doing so but the fact that it's performance is a no brainer.

In fact most VGA cards in the market that are about mid price does a very good job in that area. But of course if you want to get into the nitty gritty and am looking for perfection then get ready to take out close to $1000 for a card like the Matrox Parhelia that gives you the best and giving it to you in 3 CRT or Flat panel monitors at one time plus giving you killer 3D performancement.

Just my rant...
 

i_yagami2

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Mar 29, 2005
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#6
Hi,

I think the nvidia 6600gt based card is very good card for 3D purposes, but nvidia usually loses a bit to ATI when 2D quality is involved... However, the nvidia 6xxx series is more advanced than the ATI counterpart for 3D stuff

So if u r actually into 3d games/stuff, get the nvidia card, it gives a good bang for the buck
 

pshing

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May 15, 2004
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#7
Matrox gives u more precise color in my opinion.

But if u going to play game then of coz ati or nvidia.

It all depends on what you actually want to do with the computer ^^
 

Wai

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#8
Back in Geforce2 or TNT2 days, matrox has the best sharpness and colour. I was using G400 and G450 and both of them able to give very sharp text and more vibrant colour on my 21" CRT @ 1600 x 1200 @ 100Hz (Sony tube).

When using such high resolution & refresh rate, i am pushing the VGA bandwidth to the max so the graphic card and VGA cable that i use make a huge different.

I got many other graphic cards from TNT to GeForce3 those days, and none of them able to give the quality that matrox can (i even took screen shot with digicam for comparison). That's because all those OEM manufacturers want to cut cost and use lousy components. I can see the different between a brandless GF2MX and a more expensive brand like Elsa.

Since GeForce4 days, the 2D quality of nvidia/ati cards has improved dramatically. I have the GeForce 5xxx/6xxx series and also Radeon9xxx & X800 series, i will say the quality is as good as matrox, esp if you are using anything below 1600 x 1200.

Therefore for 2D, now the bottleneck is not the graphic card anymore, it is the monitor that make the different now. If you are more concern with colour, you should calibrate your screen frequently. If you are more concern with sharpness, you should use DVI for high resolution
 

josho

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#9
Thanks for all reply. I appreciate alot. Im not really into gaming but photos.

I knew about the monitor calibration as well. Just still wondering which card is a good buy. not the mention ultimately high end card(too killing for me)

I bet that Matrox Parhelia aint cheap at all.

How is the card which i mention in my first post? Anyone? ;) '

Thanks thanks alot! :cool:
 

Wai

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#10
6600GT cost abt $300+

as well get a Matrox Parhelia P650/750 which is abt the same price?

(provided that you dun play game much)

as i have told u b4, Parhelia cards got 2 look up table so you can connect two screen and calibrate them without problem

From matrox website
DualHead-HF is powered by two full-featured display controllers, two 400MHz 10-bit RAMDACs, a 10-bit TV encoder and dual 165MHz DVI output support.
DualHead-HF's symmetric architecture includes two independent overlay controllers and programmable mixing engines. Each overlay controller is equipped with a scalar unit and a look-up table (LUT) for gamma-corrected overlays. Video has a gamma curve different from RGB data found on the desktop. Therefore, it needs to be corrected independently of the primary display to produce an accurate color output. Dual mixing engines enable various blending options of the primary surface with the overlay surface. These mixing engines support 256 levels of alpha-keying with per-pixel independent alpha support, as well as chroma and color keying on a per-component range.
 

josho

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#11
Wai said:
6600GT cost abt $300+

as well get a Matrox Parhelia P650/750 which is abt the same price?

(provided that you dun play game much)

as i have told u b4, Parhelia cards got 2 look up table so you can connect two screen and calibrate them without problem

From matrox website
thanks man!

Look like I'll go for Matrox Parhelia.
Cheers.
 

tao

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Jan 7, 2005
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#12
if you are just into photos, my suggestion is to look for a Matrox G550, they are on the cheap now, esp used units.

and you get one of the sharpest 2D output around and accurate colors.

if not, any original ATi Radeon 9550 and above is good too and you gain the additional 3D performance and superb DVD playback.
 

josho

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#13
tao said:
if you are just into photos, my suggestion is to look for a Matrox G550, they are on the cheap now, esp used units.

and you get one of the sharpest 2D output around and accurate colors.

if not, any original ATi Radeon 9550 and above is good too and you gain the additional 3D performance and superb DVD playback.
Thanks for the reply! Appreciate. Have to look into the new motherboard im getting. Have to see is it AGP or.. (something new.. cant rem)
 

kahheng

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Jan 20, 2002
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#14
josho said:
thanks man!

Look like I'll go for Matrox Parhelia.
Cheers.
I second the recommendation for the Matrox.

If you have no need to calibrate two monitors, the standard cheap Millenium G550 is more than sufficient. I bet you won't see a diff between this and the Parhelia for Photoshopping. The other question is, are you using a CRT or LCD panel with DVI needs?
 

Firefox

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Feb 15, 2004
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#15
Wai said:
Back in Geforce2 or TNT2 days, matrox has the best sharpness and colour. I was using G400 and G450 and both of them able to give very sharp text and more vibrant colour on my 21" CRT @ 1600 x 1200 @ 100Hz (Sony tube).

When using such high resolution & refresh rate, i am pushing the VGA bandwidth to the max so the graphic card and VGA cable that i use make a huge different.

I got many other graphic cards from TNT to GeForce3 those days, and none of them able to give the quality that matrox can (i even took screen shot with digicam for comparison). That's because all those OEM manufacturers want to cut cost and use lousy components. I can see the different between a brandless GF2MX and a more expensive brand like Elsa.

Since GeForce4 days, the 2D quality of nvidia/ati cards has improved dramatically. I have the GeForce 5xxx/6xxx series and also Radeon9xxx & X800 series, i will say the quality is as good as matrox, esp if you are using anything below 1600 x 1200.

Therefore for 2D, now the bottleneck is not the graphic card anymore, it is the monitor that make the different now. If you are more concern with colour, you should calibrate your screen frequently. If you are more concern with sharpness, you should use DVI for high resolution

Actually, I managed to push my Geforce DDR 64MB to beat even the Matrox G450 in terms of image quality... Unfortunately, the card died on me after about 2 years... LOL...
Hacked my card into a Quadro Pro and did the image quality modification (removed the low-pass filter on the output stage).
That mod improved the image quality tremendously..
Guess that's what they mean by "You pay peanuts, you get monkeys". Cheap components vary too much from specifications and affect the low-pass filter hence limiting the bandwidth.

Edit: Managed to find the old pictures of my crazy little mod..
 

Wai

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#16
Firefox said:
Hacked my card into a Quadro Pro and did the image quality modification (removed the low-pass filter on the output stage).
That mod improved the image quality tremendously..
haha..u also quite hardcore....i didn't want to risk my card cos i paid over $200 for that MSI GF2 MX last time...the image quality was SOOOO bad on my 21" CRT @ 1600 x 1200, so i got it swapped but still the same...in the end, i gave up and got myself a matrox G400

too bad G400/450 dun have dual DVI, although i use to have a G550 with dual DVI, it dun have two look up table like the Parhelia

Manage to dig up two screen shot taken with digicam....both cropped and shrinked by 50%....the differences were dramatic

 

Firefox

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#17
Wai said:
haha..u also quite hardcore....i didn't want to risk my card cos i paid over $200 for that MSI GF2 MX last time...the image quality was SOOOO bad on my 21" CRT @ 1600 x 1200, so i got it swapped but still the same...in the end, i gave up and got myself a matrox G400

too bad G400/450 dun have dual DVI, although i use to have a G550 with dual DVI, it dun have two look up table like the Parhelia

Last time HWZ our SCSI gang and the CMF gang all super hardcore modders.. LOL.. But those days have come to pass...
I'm currently using the G450.. Maybe I should mod my GF4 MX440... Might be able to get better image quality out of it.. LOL..
 

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Bishan
#18
josho said:
Thanks for the reply! Appreciate. Have to look into the new motherboard im getting. Have to see is it AGP or.. (something new.. cant rem)
PCI Express
 

kahheng

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Jan 20, 2002
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#19
Firefox said:
Actually, I managed to push my Geforce DDR 64MB to beat even the Matrox G450 in terms of image quality... Unfortunately, the card died on me after about 2 years... LOL...
Hacked my card into a Quadro Pro and did the image quality modification (removed the low-pass filter on the output stage).
That mod improved the image quality tremendously..
Guess that's what they mean by "You pay peanuts, you get monkeys". Cheap components vary too much from specifications and affect the low-pass filter hence limiting the bandwidth.

Edit: Managed to find the old pictures of my crazy little mod..
You mean you removed the output caps? Those things do suck. I remember a few CD players that I modded the same way. The quality of sound dramatically improved alright.

The last time I wanted to do that was with a friend's Shuttle box with onboard Nvidia video that had exactly the same issue - terribly fuzzy video. I decided against that in the end since it wasn't my computer. Ha!
 

Firefox

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#20
kahheng said:
You mean you removed the output caps? Those things do suck. I remember a few CD players that I modded the same way. The quality of sound dramatically improved alright.

The last time I wanted to do that was with a friend's Shuttle box with onboard Nvidia video that had exactly the same issue - terribly fuzzy video. I decided against that in the end since it wasn't my computer. Ha!
For the video card, I removed the caps and inductors. BTW, the caps are not output caps. They're part of a low-pass filter and shunt the signal to ground. Most of the time, the cheaper parts used have largely varying values and this can cause the low-pass filter to chop off the upper-portion of the video information. Hence, the image quality suffers.



OT: I wouldn't advise doing so on CD players. The caps on the output are there for a very good reason. (I do audio modifications, BTW)
They're to block DC. Without the caps, if there is significant DC on the output, you'll potentially fry your speakers/ headphones.
I'd recommend using good caps like Cerafines or Blackgates or Hovland Musicaps or a combination of them to replace the crappy stock caps instead.
Alternatively, if you're sufficiently apt at electronics, try to design a DC servo circuit to remove DC on the output and you can then remove the DC blocking caps safely.
 

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