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I am looking to buy a nice high-end video card. $500 is about my limit, and I atm decieding between the Radeon X850XTPE and the 6800 Ultra. The X850XTPE gets all better benchmarks from the results I have looked at, but no Radeon supports pixel shading 3.0. Right now it is not utilized too much if at all but this card is a big investment and I don't want to have to upgrade for awhile, so should I get the Ultra because it has pixel shading 3.0 which is going to be used in the future, or will it not make the biggest of differences?

The X850XTPE is simply a better card if you look at its specs compared to a 6800 Ultra. Not to say the 6800 Ultra is bad, but I can spend around $500 and if I can spend that much and get better performance I will.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814143023
(6800 Ultra)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E16814102473
(XTPE)

Note: I am not willing to invest in two 6800 Ultra's on SLI, nor two XT's on ATI's CrossFire.
 

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Do not get a card that doesn't support SM 3.0

It's not used in today's current games, but it's going to be heavily utilized here soon. If you don't have 3.0, you'll be forced to run games in DirectX 8.1.

If $500 is your budget, wait until the new line of cards comes out (I think the 7800 came out today). See how much they cost, and then decide from there.
 
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