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Thread: Video Card Recommendations

  1. #1
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Video Card Recommendations

    My daughter has a Compaq Presario computer, model # 5008US. It use to be Dad's, but Dad stepped up. :

    Anyway - They like to play certain games(Sims and Halo) that require a bigger graphics card (32 MB or higher). The processor speed is enough (866 Mhz), and it has 256 MB RAM.

    But the onboard graphics controller - Intel(R) 82810E is just inadequate, and will not allow me to install the games.

    The computer is equipped with extra PCI slots, and I know how to disable the onboard adapter; but what recommendations does anyone have for a card that is economical, but would do the job?

    Thanks

    GAC
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

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  3. #2
    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    GAC,

    I just upgraded my video card a couple weeks ago. I'd recommend finding out what cards are compatible for the games they want to play. You can get used video cards that are pretty good for around $40 on ebay. I ended up buying a used ATI 9600 XT with 256 MB and DirectX 9.0 (I think) support, because then I figured I wouldn't have to upgrade for awhile. With shipping, it was about $75.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

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  4. #3
    Something clever pahster's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Be absolutely sure whichever card you purchase is a PCI (not PCI Express) card. If you have an AGP slot you should use that instead as I believe you'll get better performance out of it (although keep in mind if, for example, you get an AGP 8x card and plug it into an AGP 4x slot it won't run as well as it otherwise would, but still probably better than a pci card). I'd go for an ATI card, I've never had any trouble with them (just got a PCI express ATI Radeon x700 with 256 megs of RAM and it runs great at the beginning of the summer). ATI cards tend to be a little cheaper than Geforce cards.

    Compatability shouldn't really be an issue at this point anymore. ATI and Geforce are pretty much the only games in town anymore. Doesn't mean you shouldn't go ahead and check, though. You should be safe buying an ATI knockoff brand, just be sure you compare its tech specs to the one its modeled after. The two games you mentioned aren't exactly new, so you should be good with a card with 64 megs of RAM, although if the price if comparable I'd go for one with 128 megs.

    Check out these sites -

    www.tomshardware.com (they have good reviews and benchmarks of all kinds of hardware here)
    www.pricewatch.com (you can compare prices here)
    www.newegg.com (check out the refurbished section)

    When I get back from class I might go ahead and look around a bit and make some specific recommendations. What's your price range?

  5. #4
    Something clever pahster's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Here's a card with 64 megs of RAM. It's refurbished, though, which means it'll probably get sold pretty quick and I don't think it'll have a warranty, but that shouldn't be an issue because they test them before they sell them. This one is $28.30.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...2E16814150064R

    This one is a little more expensive but it's more powerful. You'd have to e-mail them about it though because one part says its a PCI card and another implies that it requires an AGP slot.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...2E16814140027R

    Anyway, just some examples of video cards you might be interested in.

  6. #5
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Thanks guys. I'll check them out.

    I have to have a PCI card. The games require 32 MB Ram and DirectX 9.
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

  7. #6
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    32 is probably the minimum, game graphics can be choppy and slow when running minimum requirements. I'd look at 64 or 128 cards if you can afford them.

  8. #7
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    If I go with a 64 MB (which is what I am looking at) - how much MB of SD RAM should I have? 256?
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

  9. #8
    Something clever pahster's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Are you talking about the memory interface? If it's a 64 MB card, that should be how much RAM it has onboard, be it SDRAM or DDR or whatever.

  10. #9
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    I've got 256 MB of SD Ram right now, w/ Win 98SE OS.
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

  11. #10
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Oh, your system RAM. Don't worry about that, it's seperate from the onboard RAM on the video card. Whats going to happen once you buy a card is that all of the graphics and display processes are going to run through the video card instead of the motherboard, thus freeing up a lot of system memory. Same thing would happen if you had integrated sound and then replaced it with a real soundcard. It should make your system run significantly faster, especially when running games or graphic-intensive programs.
    256 MB of RAM is probably good enough for the system you're running. I might be wrong though, depends on what Win 98 requires. I know XP needs 512 MB.
    If you find some really cheap RAM of the proper type for your motherboard (which I'm sure you could, I'm just not sure how much your board can take) it would only make your system run smoother. Maybe not THAT much smoother, but it wouldn't hurt. You're probably fine with what you've got though.

  12. #11
    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Be careful also GAC, if understand correctly, some video cards use the system memory to cut costs. Make sure you get a card with its own memory.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

    Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!

  13. #12
    Something clever pahster's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Only integrated video cards use system memory.

  14. #13
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by REDREAD
    Be careful also GAC, if understand correctly, some video cards use the system memory to cut costs. Make sure you get a card with its own memory.
    Thanks. Then what kind of specific card should I be looking for then?
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

  15. #14
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by pahster
    Only integrated video cards use system memory.
    Are you referring to those that are a part of the motherboard? That is what that Compaq has now (which I will have to disable).
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

  16. #15
    Something clever pahster's Avatar
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    Re: Video Card Recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by GAC
    Are you referring to those that are a part of the motherboard? That is what that Compaq has now (which I will have to disable).
    Right. If you buy a seperate video card you don't have to worry about it leeching off of your system memory.


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