Sapphire Radeon 9200 Atlantis

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Sapphire Radeon 9200 Atlantis 128MB Vivo/TV-Out
With ATi's Catalyst 3.4 Drivers

By - Tom Laverriere
June 12, 2003

With an advanced gaming engine and awesome graphics, Unreal Tournament 2003 truly taxes the performance of a video card.  We look forward to seeing the next generation of gaming metrics with the release of Doom 3, but until that day arrives, UT2K3 is the measuring stick.  For these tests we perform a fly by using the Antalus map.  Here are the numbers...

Unreal Tournament 2003 Benchmarks
Current, Mainstream Direct X 8 Game play

The GFFX5200 led the way in both resolutions with and without antialiasing enabled.  We were unable to complete a run of benchmarks at 1024x768 with 4X AA enabled in UT2K3 with the Radeon 9200 card.  We believe the issues lie within the latest release of ATI's v3.4 Catalyst drivers.  Once the issue is resolved we will be able to update this article with the AA numbers for the Radeon 9200 video card.


To view this card in its proper perspective, we have to draw our conclusion with the money conscious user in mind.  Although most of us would love to have a Radeon 9800 or GFFX5900 Ultra sitting in our machines, that reality is far fetched since those cards weigh in at over $400.  What the enthusiast likes to see, is a graphics card that can play today's games at reasonable resolutions and still produce playable frame rates at 60 fps or better.  While the Sapphire Radeon 9200 managed to play a couple games meeting these criteria, we feel it is not a "serious gamer's" card.  With any sort of quality settings enabled, performance dropped to unplayable levels.  Playing a game at 800x600 with no quality settings enabled is acceptable to some, but enthusiast gamers will pass by Radeon 9200 standard variant, at least opting for the "Pro" version of the card.  A quick search on price puts the Sapphire Radeon 9200 Atlantis 128MB graphics card at $79 compared to $68 for its GeForce FX5200 counterpart.  Since the GFFX5200 card outpaced Sapphire's hardware and comes in cheaper, why would anyone want the "Powered-by-ATI" Sapphire Atlantis?  Because it's a great card for everyday use, and an occasional gaming experience is not out of the question.  Throw in the fact that the Sapphire card comes with 128MB of RAM, offers 8X AGP support and boasts VIVO functionality and you have good bang for the buck here.  So while this card may not appeal to most gamers, it's a more than capable home-theater PC card that will do everyday jobs just fine.  If you're in the market for a very low cost card that offers quality graphics and a slew of functionality for the price, then the Sapphire Radeon 9200 Atlantis card is for you.  If you're in the market for a great gaming experience we feel there are other options that would better suit those needs.  In light of those arguments, we're giving the Sapphire Radeon 9200 Atlantis 128MB graphics card a HotHardware heat meter rating of...

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Tags:  Radeon, Sapphire, App, 920, LAN, SAP, AP

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