IntroductionPowerColor Radeon 9600XT Bravo 128MB
Everyone wants in with ATI. Solid GPUs and drivers make its products easy to work with. That's why there's been a raft of new add-in board partners over the last 12 months or so. ATI is doing a NVIDIA, that is, ensuring that the consumer has the widest possible range of cards, usually through a network approved distributors. The approach seems to work quite well, as we now see decent online vendors stock multiple ATI products from a number of companies. Not only that, partners are free to design more than one card per GPU. The end result can be a rather confusing array of names and cards. It's the job of the informed purchaser to sift through the marketing talk and pick the product that best suits their needs and budget.
We reckon that everyone would like a Radeon 9800XT or GeForce FX 5950 Ultra. Benchmarks and reviews espouse their performance qualities with high degrees of image enhancement and taxing resolutions. The £250+ asking price is enough to force potential buyers to look at lesser cards. It's also a fact of economics that a company won't usually sell as many high-end products as midrange ones. The £100 - £150 market is, perhaps, more important to both ATI and NVIDIA. ATI has positioned its Radeon 9600XT GPU as the one the consumers should opt for, NVIDIA reckons its FX 5700 / Ultra is a better deal.
It's no surprise, then, that PowerColor, one of ATI's favoured AIB partners, has a Radeon 9600XT card in its lineup. The Bravo model also features VIVO capability and a custom look, all for around £125. Let's investigate if it is as appetising as it sounds