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Help Upgrade my Video Card

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Andyjl24, Jul 4, 2007.

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  1. Andyjl24

    Andyjl24 Thread Starter

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    I am a big time PC gamer using I rig that I built close to four years ago. It has finally gotten to the point where I can't run some of the newer games (Well I can, just not worth it). I am looking at either getting either a SAPPHIRE 100209L Radeon X1950GT 256MB or a SAPPHIRE 100197L Radeon X1650 256MB or 512MB but I am worried about a few things. First off is the power supply because I am unsure of what is currently in the computer and I can find no sticker on it anywhere(although I believe it is a 450w). I also realize that either one will probably bottle-neck my PC, but I plan on using it for another year or two before building a new one so I definately need some upgrade. If I get the X1950 would it be overkill? (The only reason I am thinking about the X1950 is becasue of a $30 rebate.) Or is there anything else you can recommend?

    Current system: AMD Athlon XP 3000+ 2.16 Ghz processor, 1GB of RAM, an Asus A7N8X v2.0 Deluxe Moatherboard, Radeon 9600 pro EZ, with AGP Interface, running Windows XP with SP2.
     
  2. cfhpantera

    cfhpantera

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    I don't have a reccomendation for you right off the bat because your still running AGP and AGP is outdated. Your CPU equals nothing but a huge bottleneck as it's an Athlon XP. If your looking to save money in the long run, forgot about buying a new card all together and build yourself a new PC now. If you upgrade your PC now that usually means less money for a better PC later. If you must upgrade Don't buy an X1650, it uses a 128bit memory interface which is not good enough these days. The X1950GT has a 256bit interface which is important but your CPU and AGP is such a bottleneck it's hard to say upgrading is worth it.
     
  3. brite750

    brite750

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    youre not going to be able to use an agp card on youre new system down the road, and yes your current system will bottleneck the gfx card. you will also have to be certain your current psu can handle the new card, cant guess at it.
     
  4. Andyjl24

    Andyjl24 Thread Starter

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    OK I finally found my old notes when I built my computer and it is a 450W power supply, so that shouldn't be a problem. I know that AGP is dying and the card will be useless in a year, but I don't have the money to build a new system right now but could really use a boost. Will any of the cards even show improvement? At this point I'm willing to spend around $100 for some improvment.
     
  5. brite750

    brite750

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    a 450watt what? brand name and quality are everything with PSUz, if its a cheapy brand its probably only a 275watt or less, post all the voltage/wattage info
    +3.3v / ___amps
    +5v / ____amps
    +12v / _____amps
    that sort of thing

    you can buy a new card, just didnt want you to think it was moving to your next system, also chances are the improvement may not be that great because cpu will hold the card back.
    My son went from XP3000+ barton with 6800GT to a Athlon64-3200+ 939pin with the same 6800GT and his fps went up about 30% in many games, so the XP system was definately holding the 6800 back
     
  6. brite750

    brite750

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    the X1950 is definately a better card than the 9600pro, how much that will translate on your system? I dont know that anyone can answer that, except for maybe a little, I mean you should notice an increase is fps, I'd have to think. Just dont quote me.
    Lets put it ths way , the X1950 will squeeze every bit of gfx out of the MB, and if your new rig is off a year or 2 then what the heck, maybe you can even sell the card to someone who still has agp
     
  7. Andyjl24

    Andyjl24 Thread Starter

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    I totally forgot that I replaced the PSU about a year ago, luckily I still had the box in the attic. Here are the numbers for 420W Thermaltake.
    +3.3v / 30A
    +5v / 40A
    +12v / 18A
     
  8. brite750

    brite750

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    that looks pretty light, I'm reading stuff that says 30amp on the 12v, which i would read it to say a dual 15amp 12v rails or better, if you only have 1 single 12v @ 18amp thats seems like a problem
     
  9. Andyjl24

    Andyjl24 Thread Starter

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    yeah I don't think I want to spend another $80 on a new PSU along with $120 for a new card just to play for another year on an old rig. Maybe I'll look into getting a X1550 and just make do for now.
     
  10. brite750

    brite750

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    It would be nice to be a millionaire at times
     
  11. pierrickuk

    pierrickuk

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    Hi there
    Am a new member and registered just because I am in the same situation: I want to boost my pc.
    I have been hesitating between X1950 (pro or GT) GPU based cards and GeForce 7600(GS or GT) ones for my system. Are they gonna be overkill, and if so, to what chipset shall I step down? For info, am planning on maxing out the card with 2 gig of RAM and a athlon XP 3000+
     
  12. brite750

    brite750

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    well youre in a similar situation, you need to know if your PSU can handle the new card.
    According to Toms Hardware those cards are pretty close, probably a slight edge to the ATI.
    Youre system is old and its very hard to say how much improvement you will see with the new card with your system being a bottleneck. the problem i see is that you are going to spend money on a gfx card you cant bring with you into an upgrade, agp is pretty much gone for any new system.
    My son had a $400 6800GT agp, when i upgraded him from an Athlon XP3000+ to a 939pin mb it worked out very well for him, he saw big jumps in performance (30% or more) so obviously the XP (socket A) mb was holding the gfx card back.
    I'm not telling you this to discourage you from buying new card, just so that you will go into the purchase with your eyes open.
    To run either one of those cards and see a real improvement would require a new MB/cpu/etc. IMO I would not do what it sounds like your planning, buying a XP3000+ cpu and more ram and a new gfx agp gfx card, for a little more cash you should get a new AM2 socket mb with CPU, new DDR2 ram and a new PCI-e16x gfx card, then you will see a huge difference.
     
  13. pierrickuk

    pierrickuk

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  14. brite750

    brite750

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    as you can see from Toms HW site, just going to a simple Athlon 939 A64-3400+ system gets consistantly 40 to 50% higher fps and more importantly gets you on avg. 40 or better fps, which is a confortable level for game playing, so as I said get your agp card now if you like but if you could put together a few $$$ and get a 939MB/A64-3400+ and your ATI1950 in an pci-express 16x version you would blow your current rig out of the water. you may even be able to use your current psu and ram if its pc3200 ddr400
     
  15. brite750

    brite750

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