Brr, what to say ... in retrospect I can say that the performance of the 9600 is as expected. But do you really need 256 MB, is of course the generic consensus here. At this point in time I'd have to state no. Personally If I had to choose between a 256 MB 9600 or a 128 MB 9600 Pro I'd opt the Pro as the performance is a tad higher. But even with 256 MB memory this product which is priced at roughly 180 still is about 30-40 Euro cheaper compared to the 128 MB pro ( 219)model and that my friends is value.
In all fairness, right now there are very little games that need such a massive amount of memory to store their textures in. The only one that I know of is Unreal 2003 which can utilize more than 128 MB texture memory. Future games will probably utilize more texture memory also ... but I doubt that this product will be fast enough for such massive future games.
Downside, overclocking was disabled in this series. For all of you who really do want to overclock this graphics card can grab RivaTuner and activate the SoftR9x00 patch which will patch the drivers so they allow overclocking. Downside to this is that the programmer has to release a new patch with every new driver release and you have to patch with every new driver.
The big advantage you will see here is a fully AGP8x based product that performs mediocre for a good price. The true power of this product is that it's 100% DirectX9 compatible and can render reasonable performance in such an environment. Feature wise it really is a nice product. For not an extreme amount of money it has everything you want for the time being, stability wise everything was peachy perfect on our test-platform. We have not noticed artifacts or lockups. You can expect a mid level of performance and an excellent set of features to date, you play all DirectX 7 and 8 titles in 1280x1024x32 with good solid performance and you are able to play the games with features like 6X AA and 8/16x Anisotropic filtering while maintaining very reasonable framerates in 1024x768x32. With DirectX 9 titles that on the other hand is a differenent ballgame.
To recapitulate, the performance of this product combined with it's DirectX 9 features will make this an excellent 180 buy in the category mid-range. Do not expect miracles performance wise though !
Product: Hercules 3D Prophet 9600 256 MB Manufacturer: Hercules MSRP: 180 Seek best price for this product.
3D Prophet 9600 256 MB review So here we have this product that balances in the upper region of the low-end segment and the lower segment if the mid-range performing product. The 3D Prophet 9600 with 256 MB DDR memory
3D Prophet Radeon 9800 Pro review Once again it's Hercules who did an amazing thing with it's new Radeon 9800 Pro. Lovely blue PCB, copper ramsinks, GPU front and backside cooled with copper plated cooling and even some capacitors have little copper ramsinks.
Hercules 3D Prophet 9700 review Read it again .. yes 9700 .. not 9700 Pro ! ATi really is saturating the market quite good with a card that fits any budget and system. Therefore ladies and gentlemen next to the 9000, 9000 Pro, 9100, 9500, 9500 Pro and 9700 Pro they now introduce you the Radeon 9700.