I need some advice on video card [Archive] - Glock Talk

PDA

View Full Version : I need some advice on video card


2kflhr
12-27-2004, 22:40
First off, I have an almost 15 yr. old that is into gaming, typically playing shooter games and rpg games (his definition). He (my son) has a Compaq Presario (my mistake) that originally came with a 64mb. integrated extreme graphics card. We upgraded it to a 128mb. Nvidia PCI card. At first it was sufficient, now he is having problems with the games playing slow. He said it is due to only having a 128mb. card. He found that Best-Buy has a 256mb. ATI Radion (PCI card)on sale. I was thinking awhile back I talked to a gamer/sales clerk at a computer store and he said that a 256mb would probably play no better that a 128mb as long as it was a PCI card. To really benefit from 256mb. you need a AGP card.

What are your views on that statement?

There is a local computer supply/repair center that can replace the board (mother board, I Guess) so it will accept a AGP card.

Is this wise?

Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Dennis (and Cody)

Glockman67
12-28-2004, 00:33
How old is this Compaq?

I'm surprised it didn't come with some version of an AGP slot, whether 2x, 4x or 8x.

Lemme guess, he's playing a healthy does of Doom3, FarCry and Half-Life 2 isn't he?

We need more specs on the ATI Radeon but you can try a 256mb Nvidia GeForce 6200? - whatever their lowest in the 6 series.

Think it retails for <$199

http://gear.ign.com

gman67

2kflhr
12-28-2004, 20:35
Thanks for the info.

You suggested using the 256mb. Nvidia G-force 6200. Are you refering to a PCI version?

I talked to a computer supply/repair center today, she said they could replace the main board so it will accept a AGP for about $200 ($80-100 for the board, about $80 labor). She said he will never get much out of a PCI as opposed to a AGP. I'm trying to keep the cost down as reasonable as possible and still meet his needs. I'm sure he'll be hitting me up for a Laptop before to long.

He plays Delta-Force, Final Fantsasy, Warcraft, and just started Star Wars.

He has a 2003 vintage Compaq Presario with:
P4 (2.4GHz)
2.4GHz
512MB ram

BigMadDog
12-29-2004, 17:32
Ya PCI is to slow for the new games. If he is playing World of Warcraft it could be your internet connection as well. You need cable or DSL at the very least to play online games anymore. The problem with upgrading your computer is that it get expensive quick when you have to pay labor. When you can get a brand new computer from dell so cheap its probally not worth it. PCI is now 3 generations old. We now have 2x 4x 8x AGP and then PCI Express cards since people were using regular pci cards. I suggest either upgrade the motherboard to something with a 8x AGP or just buy a new computer because PCI wont do you any good with the new games your son is playing.

Dieseler
12-29-2004, 23:35
PCI card isnt worth upgrading really, it is considerably slower than AGP.

That being said, a 256mg card is not worth the extra money over a 128mg card unless you get a card faster than a 9600XT or 5700Ultra. These cards and the ones below them aren't fast enough to make use of the extra ram.

Honestly, the best ( cheapest long run) upgrade would be to buy an Xbox and not bother trying to keep the computer running the latest games. This is coming from a long time PC gamer! I upgraded my vid card to a 9600Pro and was running games well... then the card died shortly after the warranty period leaving me out a $150 card and unable to play the last few games I had bought unless I buy ANOTHER $150 card. It's a vicious upgrade cycle that never ends.

waktasz
12-29-2004, 23:46
If you replease the mobo on your compaq it's not a compaq anymore.

Your windows disk will probably also not work.

tgtshuter
12-30-2004, 00:27
You didn't mention how much RAM your system has. To play HL-2, Far Cry, etc. I recommend 1GB of RAM. But 512K might be enough.

Another consideration when getting an upgraded grahics card is that you may need a larger power supply. I got a 300W when I installed a ATI 9800 Pro (128 MB).
The card will generate heat and I got a supplemental fan that mounts on the case. Easy and cheap to do, and will keep your card alive. Been running mine for over a year with no problem.

This set-up will keep me playing awesome PC games for quite awhile. You don't have to always get the "latest and greatest" sysem to enjoy PC games.

Hobear
01-02-2005, 17:08
To understand what's going on, would need to know what processor you're running, how much RAM your machine has. You mentioned it having an integrated card, how did you install the new card if that's the case? I can perhaps give you some helpful feedback but would need to know the specs on your machine.

BigMadDog
01-02-2005, 21:48
Originally posted by 2kflhr
Thanks for the info.


He has a 2003 vintage Compaq Presario with:
P4 (2.4GHz)
2.4GHz
512MB ram


Thats what he has which is more then enough. THe power supply might be the ticket but who knows.

waktasz
01-02-2005, 22:02
Originally posted by BigMadDog
Thats what he has which is more then enough. THe power supply might be the ticket but who knows.

More than enough if he had AGP capability and a decent card. Not really sure if a high end card will still give good performance in a PCI version, never had the (mis)fortune of trying it out myself, sorry :p

Sucks when you get a computer (or anything else for that matter) thinking it will perfectly fit your needs only to later find out it needs replacing, I feel your pain.

BigMadDog
01-03-2005, 10:10
I think the question now is. Is it worth replacing the Mother Board, and the video card and paying labor or just buy a new computer. I personally feel if he could do it himself the MB and VC would be easy and effective. That being said it could be a power supply problem. In those cheap compaq units they usually have pretty crappy powersupplies as well. Like i said it may be worth just buying a new computer. If you had some experance with computers and such the best option would be to salvage parts from the compaq and build yourself a new computer. This can be done relitivly cheap.

Glockman67
01-03-2005, 11:54
Most computer vendors (i.e. Dell, Compaq, Sony, etc...) have MB's with limited power supply capabilities.

Case in point, my 4yo Dell Dimension is limited to 200W.

So, with a bit of hard work searching, you can build a new CPU for only $800...maybe less!

gman67

BigMadDog
01-03-2005, 13:05
considering he already has a P4 and 512 ram and a decent hard drive. All he really needs is a 150 dollar AGP 8x card. A motherboard, and a new tower with power supply. www.pricewatch.com Solve that problem for under 400 dollars if you can do it yourself other wise it shouldnt take any competent computer guy more then an hour labor which is about 60 bucks. Make sure that the mother board is compatible with your current processor and ram. Other then that its just a matter of pluging things in. Good luck

waktasz
01-03-2005, 15:26
Don't forget to add a new operating system to your costs if you are changing motherboards and expecting to use the OEM Windows CDs