mike, thanks for your response. i still think that for gaming the the agp or pci express card plays a big role, irrespective of processors. i have currently amd 2600 with geforce fx5200 and found games work fine. i am thinking of going to pci express gt 6800/250mb card with amd 3200+ processor than spending that much money on pentium processor.
For Nvidia cards I usually stay away from the PNY ones and tend to go with BFG if I can afford it but GIGABYTE, ASUS, and eVGA make good ones too (i dont know about all of them). Im mostly an Nvidia person always hated ATI (Nvidia is deff the choice for Linux users), but I am waiting to see what AMD does with the ATI brand now that they acquired it.
So far I havent heard anything about any upcoming cards from ATI after AMD acquired them and im waiting to see what they can pull together. Although it seems like a cool idea to bring better performance I would hate for Nvidia cards to stop working with AMD's and ATI cards not working with Intels as well as they would vice versa.