CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again

Christmas Gift Guide

VisionTek Xtasy 5864 review:

VisionTek Xtasy 5864

  • 1
Hot Products

The Good Easy to install; comes with hefty 64MB of DDR RAM; fast 2D performance; low price.

The Bad No bundled games or cables; slow 3D performance at high resolutions.

The Bottom Line The Xtasy 5864 provides ample 3D gaming power at a bargain price for any game currently available and most that will be released in the near future. The ATI Radeon 7500, however, provides a bit more bang for the same bucks.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

CNET Editors' Rating

7.0 Overall

Powered by Nvidia's GeForce2 Ti graphics-processing unit, VisionTek's new Xtasy 5864 revisits older GeForce2 technology in the wake of Nvidia's newer (and more expensive) line of GeForce3 Titanium-powered graphics cards. The GeForce2 Ti is aimed at mainstream gamers looking for a little more gaming power while hoping to pay a little less. And that's not much of a stretch; harnessing the older--but still kicking--technology of the GeForce2 is what allows the Xtasy 5864 to be so capable yet so cheap. Powered by Nvidia's GeForce2 Ti graphics-processing unit, VisionTek's new Xtasy 5864 revisits older GeForce2 technology in the wake of Nvidia's newer (and more expensive) line of GeForce3 Titanium-powered graphics cards. The GeForce2 Ti is aimed at mainstream gamers looking for a little more gaming power while hoping to pay a little less. And that's not much of a stretch; harnessing the older--but still kicking--technology of the GeForce2 is what allows the Xtasy 5864 to be so capable yet so cheap.

Easy on-ramp
The $150 Xtasy 5864 is easy on your wallet and easy to install, even if you haven't had the fun of getting inside your computer before. The card is compatible with Windows 95 OSR2 and later, plus Linux. VisionTek provides a huge, multicolored reference sheet that illustrates the steps you'll need to follow; if you're capable of making blue and yellow turn green on those sandwich bags, you can install this card.

The drivers install nearly automatically from the included CD, and the most work you'll need to do is to select the resolution and palette level you'd prefer. With 64MB of DDR RAM and a 250MHz 2D/3D GPU, the VisionTek has plenty of processing power for a wide array of resolutions and color depths. The company doesn't provide guidelines for setting resolutions, but the accepted rule of thumb is 800x600 for a 15-inch monitor, 1,024x768 for a 17-inch display, and whatever your eyes can bear on larger monitors--up to the card's maximum 2,048x1,536 at 60Hz. Just remember that to avoid eye-fatiguing flicker, you'll want a resolution of at least 75Hz (above 85Hz, flicker is all but imperceptible).

The Xtasy 5864's bundle is as minimal as its price; there are no free games included. You do get a CD with CyberLink's PowerDVD playback software, which could be useful if you have a DVD-ROM drive or plan to get one. If you do, the S-Video port on the back of the Xtasy 5864 lets you use your television to watch movies or play games. However, there are no S-Video or composite-video adapter cables included.

Xtasy examined
In the fast-changing world of gaming graphics, the Xtasy 5864's GeForce2 Ti technology is considered retro, but except for the most demanding players, most users will find that it's still very fast. In CNET Labs' tests, the Xtasy 5864's 3D performance at the mainstream setting of 1,024x768 resolution and 32-bit color was just slightly slower than that of the midrange Hercules 3D Prophet III Titanium 200 and the like-priced ATI Radeon 7500. The VisionTek falters badly at a higher 1,600x1,200 resolution, however, so it clearly has its limits when it comes to high-intensity gaming. But for mainstream apps, it's a definite winner; in 2D testing (using eTesting Labs' Business Graphics WinMark 99), the Xtasy pulled ahead of the Radeon 7500 by 29 percent and the Prophet III Titanium 200 by 24 percent.

VisionTek backs the Xtasy 5864 with pretty good service and support. The lifetime warranty including free phone support is great; the bad news for consumers is that support lines are open only on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. CT. The Web resources compensate somewhat for the inconvenience; you can e-mail questions to technicians or browse the fairly competent Tek-Support section, complete with FAQs, forums, and downloadable drivers. Because the card has an Nvidia chipset, you can download the latest Detonator drivers and reasonably expect a performance gain.

A budget to grow on
The Xtasy 5864 may lack the sex appeal of being the latest and greatest innovation in 3D-graphics technology, but the truth is it can still render most 3D games faster than you're physically capable of playing them, and its low price leaves you some cash to spend on a state-of-the-art sound card or speaker system. However, if you have an extra monitor around, you may prefer the ATI Radeon 7500, which sells for the same price but has dual-monitor capability and slightly better overall performance.

Quake III Arena test
Frames per second; longer bars indicate better performance
32-bit color; 1,024x768   
32-bit color; 1,280x1,024   
32-bit color; 1,600x1,200   
Hercules 3D Prophet III Ti 200 (Nvidia GeForce3, 64MB DDR)
149.3 
100.3 
70.5 
VisionTek Xtasy 5864 (Nvidia GeForce2 Ti, 64MB DDR)
120.6 
75.4 
51.7 
ATI Radeon 7500 (ATI Radeon, 64MB DDR)
115.1 
74.4 
52.8 
 
3D test: MadOnion.com's 3DMark 2001 Pro
Longer bars indicate better performance
16-bit color; 1,024x768   
32-bit color; 1,024x768   
32-bit color; 1,280x1,024   
32-bit color; 1,600x1,200
Hercules 3D Prophet III Ti 200 (Nvidia GeForce3, 64MB DDR)
6,327 
6,221 
4,924 
3,779 
ATI Radeon 7500 (ATI Radeon, 64MB DDR)
4,542 
4,457 
3,640 
2,891 
VisionTek Xtasy 5864 (Nvidia GeForce2 Ti, 64MB DDR)
4,599 
3,997 
3,002 
2,224 
 
3D test: eTesting Labs' 3D WinBench 2000 1.1
Longer bars indicate better performance
16-bit color; 1,024x768   
32-bit color; 1,024x768   
32-bit color; 1,280x1,024   
32-bit color; 1,600x1,200
Hercules 3D Prophet III Ti 200 (Nvidia GeForce3, 64MB DDR)
203 
199 
136 
99 
ATI Radeon 7500 (ATI Radeon, 64MB DDR)
172 
162 
108 
79.8 
VisionTek Xtasy 5864 (Nvidia GeForce2 Ti, 64MB DDR)
191 
143 
93.7 
65.7 
 
The Xtasy 5864's 3D performance at the mainstream setting of 1,024x768 resolution and 32-bit color was just slightly slower than that of the midrange Hercules 3D Prophet III Titanium 200 and the like-priced ATI Radeon 7500. It falters badly at a higher 1,600x1,200 resolution, however, so it clearly has its limits when it comes to high-intensity gaming.

Hot Products

This week on CNET News

Discuss VisionTek Xtasy 5864