While enthusiasts care only about the middle and high end computer parts market, it is the low end cards that bring in the most money for the manufacturers. All those desktop machines that are only used to browse the internet and write the occasional document don’t really need a GeForce 8800 Ultra, but considering that more and more people want to watch videos on their PCs an integrated graphics card doesn’t cut it either.
Because of that cards like the GeForce 7300 and ATI X1300 were such a success. They offered a lot for a very low price. But times change and with Vista becoming the OS of choice for many, cards like that are having trouble displaying the Aero desktop environment without slowdowns. But the aforementioned cards weren’t designed with Vista in mind. Their successors however are.
The GeForce 8400GS and the ATI X2400XT are the latest entries into the budget market and judging by their price you shouldn’t expect much from them, especially in terms of gaming. But as always we shouldn’t judge the book by the cover, so let us take a closer look at these newest offerings.