Topic: What are the best vendors around at the moment?  (Read 4064 times)

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Offline FPF-SCM_TraceyG_XC

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What are the best vendors around at the moment?
« on: December 14, 2004, 10:10:33 pm »
Say for graphics cards, for instance. The chipset is a toss up between nVidia and ATI, but what about the manufacturers of the video cards themselves (or any other hardware for that matter), such as Asus, Gigabyte, LinkSys, etc.
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Offline E_Look

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Re: What are the best vendors around at the moment?
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2004, 11:57:09 pm »
Well, I'm not the hippest on all this, but a systems tech guy I know who really knows his hardware (and software for that matter) buys Asus boards for himself.  His claim is that they never are the first to market a board with new chipsets or other subsystem goodies, like integrated audio or networking.  They come out months or so later with allegedly a superior product since they've taken the time to work out any possible major bugs.

I have bought and used MSI and DFI myself and am totally happy with the systems I've built on them.  They work flawlessly and give no hint of trouble.  Of course, you have to do a little bit of snooping around (harder than a lit search for a paper or proposal since you don't really know what sites or sources are reliable or if they are, to what degree) to see what components (CPUs, RAM sticks, CDROM drives, what have you... ) work optimally with the mobo.

The problem, though, is in the nature of electronics manufacturing and the nature of electronic devices themselves.  A case in point would be CPUs; often the clock speed grades differentiate among the "best" of a lot cut from a wafer if they are the fastest while the slower are the "less than perfect" ones from the lot.  Thus, it may be possible on something as complex as a motherboard to get lemon... more than once, even on an acclaimed model.

Offline Javora

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Re: What are the best vendors around at the moment?
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2004, 04:33:34 pm »
ATI makes their own video cards so if you buy an ATI video just look for their brand.  For nVidia I would probably go with Asus, PNY, or Gigabyte video cards.  Although Asus has been having some manufacturing problems for about the last 18 months now.  Something to do with the CEO (I think?) leaving or something.  I think Asus is starting to come out of it finally but I would keep a close eye on product reviews before buying.

As for motherboards I have also been hearing some good things about DFI, they seem pretty reliable.  Again Asus has been having some productions problems (my motherboard is living proof).  And ABIT got sued over substandard parts on their motherboard that were rusting out.

Offline Bonk

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Re: What are the best vendors around at the moment?
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2004, 07:24:15 pm »
Matrox, Matrox, Matrox!   ;D

and of course Xilinx, (wave of the future man, wave o the future...)  8)

Offline Elvis

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Re: What are the best vendors around at the moment?
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2004, 09:46:35 pm »
Manufacturers of ATI cards don't often vary from the reference design, so your typical 9800 for example is pretty much the same across the board whether it be manufactured by ATI, Saphire or any other. I persopnally like the products manufactured by HIS, especially their Iceberg line.

Nvidia is a little bit different story. I would recommend BFG Technologies for 2 reasons: 1. Their guarantee, the offer a lifetime warranty on their cards, and it is a lifetime warranty, not just the shelf life of the current product. Other manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty that is defined by the shelf life of the card, ie if the card is not in production anymore your warranty is pretty much worthless. 2. Their cards come with the memory overclocked, this in combination with the above, means that the quality of their cards is high.

The other company that I would recommend woud be EVGA which offers a step up program, buy the latest card today and step to the newest card tomorrow by paying the difference between the two. The also have a pretty active forum area which makes me feel a little more connected.