This ATI Radeon 9800 Pro has done me fine service over the last couple of years, cost me a little over GBP300 when I bought it, and I figure it's put up with a lot of punishment (which is probably why it's playing silly buggers) and given me good ROI.
I've noticed theres a fair bit of talk about some of the beastier GPU's coming out in AGP form (don't have a PCIe motherboard), so I thought I'd be able to get something nice.
The other big issue was price - given that I want to completely rebuild this machine at the end of '06 or start of '07 it doesn't make any sense to invest huge sums of money into something I'm only gonna end up replacing. Especially given that I'll need Direct3D 10 hardware when its available.
So I spotted this beauty:
512mb AGP GeForce 6800.
It's got 4x as much VRAM as my current hardware, which is impressive. It's AGP which suits my machine. It's a 6-series card, which means it supports Shader Model 3.
The only downside is that it doesn't appear to be a high performance variant, but benchmarks seem to put it at least equal with my current card, if not slightly ahead...
So, I've parted with GBP134 of money that I don't strictly have (I love interest free overdrafts) and it should be here on Tuesday. Yay!
Just gotta hope that my 300w PSU doesn't cry at the sight of it.