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Midnight Demonge

Need Video Card Advice

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I just did a little checking...you are right about the 7300 being a low-end GPU.  It will give you double the pipelines of the Radeon 9600 you are running now.  However, it calls for a minimum 350 watt PSU, and you have 250 Watts according to Dell's spec sheet.  You will see some improvement, but not much.  I would say the RAM upgrade is cost effective, but looking at adding a GPU and PSU to an older Dell, this may be one of those situations where you are better off putting your money in a safe place towards a new computer.

 

(And I am not familair with that particular model, but many Dell computers use a non-standard pin layout on the motherboard which makes replacing the power supply difficult.)

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I just did a little checking...you are right about the 7300 being a low-end GPU.  It will give you double the pipelines of the Radeon 9600 you are running now.  However, it calls for a minimum 350 watt PSU, and you have 250 Watts according to Dell's spec sheet.  You will see some improvement, but not much.  I would say the RAM upgrade is cost effective, but looking at adding a GPU and PSU to an older Dell, this may be one of those situations where you are better off putting your money in a safe place towards a new computer.

 

(And I am not familair with that particular model, but many Dell computers use a non-standard pin layout on the motherboard which makes replacing the power supply difficult.)

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The upgrade you are suggesting will not make too much difference i think.

Most important is that your new Vid card will have a 256 bus !! That is most important and makes a dazzling difference. By now fast cards with that are already on the market for far under 100 dollars. With 256 bus, 512 or 1024 dedicated vid ram won't make much difference either.

Go to at least 3 Gigs of ram. Try to get DDR3 ram both for Main and Vid.

Also dual, single or Quad processor does not make too much difference. SL does not use Duo or Quad at all. Duo Core however is great for SL to run with another program. So look for a Duo Core, T9400 or so.

Not sure if Nvidia or ATI are the best now.

If you are going to upgrade your Dell and all above is hardy possible or too costly, i'd buy a new PC.

 

/Me personally thinks... time for a new PC hun,

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Most of the above is not possible.  The 7300 has a 128-bit bus, not 256.  GDDR2 on the card.  Plain old DDR on the motherboard.  And you're suggesting a mobile CPU when the OP has a P4 system.


As for ATI v. Nvidia, I have been told that ATI does not officially support the 3000/4000 series on AGP, so driver support will be problematic for the other cards available.  At least the Nvidia 6000/7000 series had AGP versions, so the drivers should support them.

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