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Can a sub-$100 graphics card get the job done?

The Tech Report: "We have not, I must admit, been great fans of sub-$100 graphics cards here at TR. Yes, we've reviewed them pretty faithfully over the years, but as I said in our review of the Radeon HD 2400 series: "If you're spending less than [$100] on graphics, you're getting the sort of performance you deserve, regardless of which brand of GPU you pick." In other words, cheaping out will get you lousy frame rates and spotty gameplay. It wasn't just spite to say so; it was definitely true.

But what if you could cheap out and get more than you deserve for it? What if, through the magic of technological progress, dropping 80 bucks on a video card could get you a GPU that will slice through the latest games with relative ease? What if it could help decode HD video streams perfectly, even on a slow CPU? If such a beast existed, should you consider spending more, or would it just be future-proofing and fluff?"

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