Solved: Need help knowing what video card to install?

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ormissy82

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I have a Dell Optiplex GX270 small desktop running at 2.66Ghz with Windows XP. My son's games are freezing and so I am guessing I need to upgrade the video card.
I have the AGP slot for that but have no idea which one to buy or what will work with this system. After initial research I think I need a low profile one. The monitor I am using is a wide screen which is suppose to run at 1440X900 but I could never get it to run at that. I don't need the latest and best card just a cheap fix so he can play the standard games. I am new to PC's after being a Mac owner for 20 years and would appreciate any help anyone could give. :eek:
 
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ormissy82,

Low profile is generally the problem with these;
You can't go far wrong with an NVidia card (and at least there are low-profile versions out there). Basically, they come as GeForce WXYZ
where WXYZ is the number, The first digit is the series (higher the better), the second is the revision (you'll want a minimum of W6YZ, but check the games you want to play for details) the last two are normally zeros, then you'll be interested in how much memory you'll need.

A quick guide is;
Go to Game / PCWorld etc. have a look at all the sorts of games that you might be looking at running, and check the specs on the back for the graphics card.
It'll say something like: "minimum NVidia GeForce 7600 or better with 256Mb RAM".
Basically, you'll want to beat the first two digits, so a 7700, will do, as will an 8600, or an 8700 would be better still. Then you want at least as much memory on-board, with 256/512MB being about the norm, and then going up 768MB -> 1GB.

It all depends how much you want to pay. I find ebuyer tend to be a bit cheaper than dabs of late, but look around on-line once you know what you need.

Rich.
 

ormissy82

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Thanks for the help!! I will look around and see if I can score a decent one on ebay. I hope they are easy to install. Thanks again :)
 
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Again. Even if you find a decent one cheap, you'll end up just killing it in that desktop, because of the insufficient power supply...
Still, it's not my headache if that happens, so feel free to risk it.
 

ormissy82

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So it would be better just to get a new desktop. Any suggestions for a good used PC that would have the bigger power supply and is easier to upgrade?
 
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Yeah, sorry for being a bit blunt. Upgradability isn't really the main feature in HP, Dell etc. So, if you want upgradable, you'll need a custom-built. Don't stare at the watts when looking at the power supply, they mean next to nothing... To be continued.... Where do you live?
 

ormissy82

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Thanks for the help. I am in Oregon, I guess I should upgrade the computer anyway. My son has high functioning autism so he really likes the games and they help him with dexterity as well. Looks like most of his games require GeForce FX/Radeon 9700, 128MB or better to run. A custom computer sounds expensive and out of my league. Maybe I should go back to Mac, it was so much easier to upgrade and use. I am just a fish out of water with the PC. (no offense to anyone who prefers the PC, it is just what I am use to.)
 
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Hi there,

You're going to find it very difficult to find a low profile AGP video card these days. I did a quick search a few days ago and could only find a Geforce 6200 for $50.

What games does you son play most often? What would you budget be for a new computer?

You can get a good computer these days for about $500-600. A $1000 will make a computer that can pretty much run anything at high settings on a 24"+ monitor.
 
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Thanks for the help. I am in Oregon, I guess I should upgrade the computer anyway. My son has high functioning autism so he really likes the games and they help him with dexterity as well. Looks like most of his games require GeForce FX/Radeon 9700, 128MB or better to run. A custom computer sounds expensive and out of my league. Maybe I should go back to Mac, it was so much easier to upgrade and use. I am just a fish out of water with the PC. (no offense to anyone who prefers the PC, it is just what I am use to.)
what kind of hardware needed is very dependant on what games you are talking about so you really have to start there. think about what games you think you are going to play, go to their sites and search for hardware requirements. Weather or not you stay with Mac or PC you should do some research.
 
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Okay, continuing. What I meant, is that if you're going to buy a used PC, don't go for the Dell, HP etc stuff, rather get one that was custom- or self-built. I'd think you'll get one very cheap if you just keep looking.
For example:
I live in a very expensive country (I think we rate in the top three)
I am dying to sell my old rig, that would be quite good for your needs, graphics card-wise at least. I'm selling it for 90 €, and nobody is interested a bit.
So... make your conclusions.. :)
 

ormissy82

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Thanks for the offer but I think I got finally got one that will work for him. I appreciate all your advice.
 
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No, I'm not selling it to you, lol. If that's what you thought,(it would cost 1.5 times the selling price to ship that thing from here to anywhere) I just made an example of the cheapness of used, decent pcs for medium gaming use.
Good if you found
 
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