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America Mertel

Looking to buy a new graphics card...thanks SL -.-

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With the new Second Life and Firestorm viewer releases I have come into a great deal of trouble loading my inworld environment and avatar-particularly in firestorm. I have since come to the conclusion that it is time for a new graphics card! 

I have done everything I needed for both viewers as far as having the most up to date viewer DL's and any trouble shooting. In addition, I have contacted my internet provider and all is well.

With that said here is my computer stats now (Purchased computer 2 Years ago):

System Information
------------------
Time of this report: 8/22/2013, 07:49:14

Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit (6.1, Build 7601) Service Pack 1 (7601.win7sp1_gdr.130708-1532)
Language: English (Regional Setting: English)
System Manufacturer: Dell Inc.
System Model: Inspiron 560
BIOS: Default System BIOS
Processor: Pentium(R) Dual-Core CPU E5800 @ 3.20GHz (2 CPUs), ~3.2GHz
Memory: 6144MB RAM
Available OS Memory: 6108MB RAM
Page File: 2872MB used, 9343MB available
Windows Dir: C:\Windows
DirectX Version: DirectX 11
DX Setup Parameters: Not found
User DPI Setting: Using System DPI
System DPI Setting: 96 DPI (100 percent)
DWM DPI Scaling: Disabled
DxDiag Version: 6.01.7601.17514 32bit Unicode

------------
DxDiag Notes
------------
Display Tab 1: No problems found.
Sound Tab 1: No problems found.
Input Tab: No problems found.

 

Display Devices
---------------
Card name: Intel(R) G45/G43 Express Chipset
Manufacturer: Intel Corporation
Chip type: Intel(R) 4 Series Express Chipset Family
DAC type: Internal

Display Memory: 1695 MB
Dedicated Memory: 64 MB
Shared Memory: 1631 MB
Current Mode: 1920 x 1080 (32 bit) (60Hz)
Monitor Name: Dell ST2321L_Analog
Monitor Model: DELL ST2321L

 

Not sure if I need to show anything else.....

Okay so you now know that all was fine before the new viewer launches and my computer specs. Now for the fun part...graphics card picking out!

People say Nvidia or I have my tech guy telling me Radeon; So I have been looking at the Radeon HD 7790 or the 7850-I actually had a guy tell me this morning that the ATI Radeon HD 5450 would be just fine, what do you think? 

I want to be able to run on a great graphics setting once again for photos and of coarse user experience. Even though I have had a pretty good user experience before 3 days ago some things were still not available for me to utilize like the shadows options and such.

ANY helpful feedback would be much appreciated especially before I make a graphics card purchase in the name of SL (fml.....lol) and if you need ANY more specs from my computer, please let me know. Hope to hear from ya'll soon! <3

 

~Merica :matte-motes-sunglasses-2:

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Don't feel too bad about it, you were using a discrete graphics chip (not a real card) - I'm impressed you had any reasonable performance at all in SL. Dell build office PCs, suitable for web browsing, small document writing, and sending E-mail. This was an upgrade you were probably going to need anyway; SL (and online gaming in general) demands more from your PC than a Playstation 3 or xBox can offer consistantly.

This purchase will improve things for you about a bazillion percent, and you'll be able to play computer games too. You might be able to squeeze some short-term, low-gain performance out of your existing chip by lowering your monitor resolution to about 1200pixels wide.

You can grab a new small half-length card for about $50, I've personally had very good fortune with Nvidia (especially the 200-500 series), but ATI/AMD is a recommendation that a lot of people make.

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AMD Radeon cards have frequent, serious problems with Second LIfe because it's an open-source, multii-platform application that uses OpenGL as the graphics language instead of DirectX which most Windows game-type applications do. AMD's OpenGL drivers are a source of constant problems in SL and most other OpenGL applications- AMD treats OpenGL as a stepchild.

If your primary interest is Second Life DO NOT BUY AN AMD RADEON VIDEO CARD. Whatever technical advantages your tech guy may be raving about will be utterly blown away by their Godawful drivers.

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Awesome Freya! See I was planning on spending 100+ dollars, but looks like I will not have to! This makes me very happy and I can try to lower my monitor resolution down a bit, but I may need your assistance on where I need to go for that? I am guessing into my intel program and then there will be an option there for that?

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Theresa, first I want to thank you a billion for your reply this morning. In addition, I have seen MANY people posting that their Radeon graphics cards are not running correctly which is horrible for them! ---> It looks like I will go Nvidia then!

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To change display resolution on Windows 7:-

 

  1. Right-click your desktop wallpaper, select 'Screen resolution'
  2. Set Resolution drop-down box to a value somewhere in the middle. Click Apply (followed by OK to confirm that you want to keep these settings on the pop-up after resolution change occurs).
  3. Click OK on the Screen resolution window to return.

If you accidentally set a resolution your monitor or your chip doesn't support (the screen will stay black), simply wait 15 seconds and the display will revert to the last setting. Don't panic in this situation.

 

 

 

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Yeah....I tried 3 different settings and each time it said that they were not optimal for me. Well, that's okay because now I know what graphics card I need to get!

When I called Dell this morning one of the Nvidia's he recommended was the GT 220. What do you think of that? I am sure anything I get will be better then what I have now, right?

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Yeah I am definitely going to do that! Thanks for the reply Alicia...I am online now looking at the Nvidia graphics cards and there are SO many of them! I just do not know what to choose---I know that I have a budget of about 100-130 dollars, yet if I can spend less and still get awesome graphics, that will make me a happy shopper! 

By the way did I mention I play World of Warcraft? I guess anything I get will go great for WoW as well, eh?

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GT220 is a pretty nice, small card. It will do well enough at light games use, and you won't get heating problems (which are common with Dell PCs, since they seem to use plastic cases). I also noticed there was a sale on these at a couple of places. ;) Since you play other games, if you have $100 or so set aside for this upgrade... it might be worth spending a little more, and ensuring that your PC has 'room' for your computer games collection to grow.

Check that your motherboard has a PCI-E x16 socket, and that the outputs of the GT220 match the monitor you're using (Dell typically use DVI nowadays I think, so you should be fine).

'Not optimal' is fine, smaller resolutions will give you a graphics boost in performance. If you're trying out new resolutions your view will look like it has 'less detail', but this allows your chipset to run faster as it has a smaller area to draw on.

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America Mertel wrote:

Yeah....I tried 3 different settings and each time it said that they were not optimal for me. Well, that's okay because now I know what graphics card I need to get!

When I called Dell this morning one of the Nvidia's he recommended was the GT 220. What do you think of that? I am sure anything I get will be better then what I have now, right?

The 220 sounds a very low spec to me.   Nvidia numbers in the GT series are a bit confusing, in that the first digit indicates the launch year (2 means 2009; the newest drivers are the 700 series).

The subsequent two digits represent the model within that series (higher is better).;   So Dell are recommending the lowest (or almost lowest) spec version of a very old GPU (graphics card), and one that's well below LL's recommended minimum spec (275 or 295).

Personally, I wouldn't go for anything older/lower spec than a 550 for SL.   

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A GTX 220 is a four years old  low end office gpu, you won't be statisfied with that card's performance. I'd go for at least a 5 or 6  as second digit in the nVidia series ( e.g. GTX 460, GTX 550 TI, GTX 650 TI etc...)).

Forget about LL's minimum requirements, they are as outdated as windows vista.

J.

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You're right Innula & Jean (and I'm sure others), my mind wasn't thinking of SL when I said the GT220 would be adequate. Or maybe I was thinking of the GT520 I picked up a while ago (but again, haven't used for SL). Hardware is hard :(

You might get average performance, but I would defer to hardware experts in their selections (typically, I mostly know software).

Sorry about that!

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For your reference.

I run my system with a GTS250. I know .. oldbie card.

 

gpuz-tdd123.gif

 

CPUZ-TDD123.gif

 

Runs my SL on about 40 FPS in not too busy sims without shadows and about 15 to 20 FPS with shadows + occlusion + blur . For now I personally classify that as decent. High settings run best. Ultra can be done.

I'll expect it to be redundant to SL properly in about 2 to 3 years from now.

 

ETA : Added my CPUZ too for OPs reference. I got this card as a second hand for about 40 bucks (6 months ago).

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Freya Mokusei wrote:

... heating problems (which are common with Dell PCs, since they seem to use plastic cases).

Hand in glove with cooling is power supply capacity. For higher-end graphics cards, need to be sure the machines PSU is adequate (which may already be known; I just didn't notice it mentioned in a quick glance through this thread).

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TDD123 wrote:

For your reference.

I run my system with a GTS250. I know .. oldbie card.

 

Runs my SL on about 40 FPS in not too busy sims without shadows and about 15 to 20 FPS with shadows + occlusion + blur . For now I personally classify that as
decent
. High settings run best. Ultra can be done.

I'll expect it to be redundant to SL properly in about 2 to 3 years from now.

 

ETA : Added my CPUZ too for OPs reference. I got this card as a second hand for about 40 bucks (6 months ago).

I've been using the GTS250 for a couple of years now and have been happy with its performance.

I'm looking at upgrading now and am probably going to go with a GTX650ti.

I'm not looking for all the bells and whistles, just primarily a performance boost and I think the 650 will get me what I want.

http://www.hwcompare.com/13718/geforce-gts-250-1gb-vs-geforce-gtx-650-ti/

I am starting to see some nice deals popping up on this card.

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America Mertel wrote:

 

By the way did I mention I play World of Warcraft? I guess anything I get will go great for WoW as well, eh?

All the metrics and posts by tech-heads make my head hurt so I'll respond to this particular point - yes, whatever card you get today will be wonderful for WoW.  Until a few months ago I was playing WoW on a PC with a 10-year-old Motherboard with an nVidia GeForce 5700LE card (mid-top of the line at the time I purchased it).  I could play WoW & EQ with no lag nor loss of graphical detail with that PC. 

Congratz on a new graphics card!  I'm enjoying my new PC immensely although (for reasons I won't bore you with) I have yet to install my new graphics card.  Oh, I tried as detailed here.  Before I can attempt this again I first need to acquire a few items and, while I'm at it, upgrade the standard power supply that came with my PC.  I am going to a brick & morter PC store so I am SURE I get all the right connections and doodads this time.

 

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When I called Dell this morning one of the Nvidia's he recommended was the GT 220. What do you think of that?

 

I think it's crap, sorry. GT220 is the bottomfeeder in NVIDIA's lineup and won't give you much improvement over the onboard chip. In that case it would be better to invest in a new CPU and enjoy their much better Intel HD4000 chip. SL is a very demanding environment so try to get a NVIDIA GPU that starts with GTX instead of just GT. GTX 660 seems to be the best bang for  buck card  right now. Just make sure there is enough space in the case to fit it in and your PSU delivers enough electrical power to run it.

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Hey Orca! Thanks for the advice! I will definitely contact my computer manufacturer with the graphics card I plan to purchase before I buy.

 

~Merica :matte-motes-sunglasses-1:

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The Nvidia gt630 should be the newest, best card you can get without upgrading your power supply.    (Between $60 and $80 online.)

If you are fortunate enough to have a 350w (or larger) power supply, you could get a gt640 card.  ($80 - $100 online).

 

Beyond that you are likely to need a new power supply and that sounds like it is beyond your budget right now.

 

I currently use multiple computers with different graphics cards.  One has the gt520 card in it and it works well enough if the sim isn't overly busy.  One generation newer and a step higher the gt630 should be better. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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