Help, What is the best PCI card

By skalky
Jan 21, 2005
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  1. Hey I recently got a emachines computer and I am looking to upgrade the video card because I want to be able to run games like counter-strike and half life2 at decent graphics, my computer has no agp slot though so I don't know if that is even possible, do you guys know of any pci cards that would be worth it for me to buy? Thanks, Andrew
  2. Arthurik_jan

    Arthurik_jan TechSpot Member Posts: 45

    Hi!
    I did the exact same thing recently and got myself an nVIDIA GeForce 6600GT PCI-Express 16x, 128MB for 200$ and believe me it rocks and doesn't cost too much.. another choice is the ATI Radeon X600 XT or X700 Pro 128MB but of course the problem with ATI is (as always) the drivers but you can give it a try (radeon rocks).

    Anyway it depends how much you're willing to invest of course. If you can afford the nVidia GeForce 6800GT or the :eek: ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum (which is much more powerful) then of course it's much better. You'll last like 4-5 years with it without a single problem.
  3. olefarte

    olefarte TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 1,427

    You need to have a PCI-E slot, (or AGP), to run the above listed cards, and I don't think you have that, or do you. PCI-E is different from PCI.

    Your choices are more limited in the PCI cards, than AGP. You might look at the Radeon 9250 Video Card, PCI, 256MB DDR, or the GeForce FX 5200 Video Card, PCI, 256MB DDR. You can probably get these for $130 or less. Not really sure how well they'll run the games you listed though, maybe someone else will drop in.
  4. skalky

    skalky Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Ya I don't have a PCI-E slot just a normal PCI slot, thanks anyway Jan, and thank you olefarte I'll check out those cards, thanks for helping out guys I apprectiate it and if anyone else knows of other cards please post, thanks

    Oh also do you know if it matters weather I buy the ATI or Nivida brand, or will a much cheaper off brand like EVGA work almost as good?
  5. Rolly

    Rolly Newcomer, in training Posts: 20

    You cannot use any of these cards without PCI-E.

    I would also reccomend the GeForce 5200FX, or the Radeon 9250. Personally I tend to stay shy of anything other than ATI/Nvidia, for quality purposes. Whichever one you decide to choose is a personal opinion as far as performance is concerned, they both have very similar qualities.

    Other important things to consider when buying a new graphics card, especially when it is a huge step up from the old one:

    1- Proper Cooling!!! Believe me, nobody wants to bust out the house fan.
    2-A big enough power supply. I always reccomed about 400-480 watts with
    a card like the Geforce 5200fx/5500fx. I think the manufacturer reccomendation is 300 watt. But its always good to be safe.
  6. AtK SpAdE

    AtK SpAdE TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,846

    Trying to run HL2 on a 5200 PCI is nearly impossible, i know i have tried. I would suggest getting a new motherboard to allow for a better card.
  7. skalky

    skalky Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    I have to disagree, My brother has a 2.2 celron dell and an eVGA Geforce2 PCI mx 400 and half life 2 works on it just fine, he also has 1 gig of ram so that might be whats making the difference, thanks though I don't think a new motherboard will be an option for awhile heh money issues, but thanks

    Are there any major difference between the FK 5500 and the FK 5200? I don't plan on having 2 moniters ever thanks everyone for helping me out so much
  8. skalky

    skalky Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    anyone else have any input?
  9. efrankb

    efrankb Newcomer, in training

    I was in the same boat for about a year with no agp slot. I got the Xtasy 9200 SE 128 mb, and it looks ok. I can run Doom III on lowest settings, and Far Cry woulndt run at all, shutting my computer off! I would recommend getting a gig of ram, and the Asylum 5200 256 mb, or the Xtasy 9250 256 mb. You should be good to go.
    Good luck!
  10. skalky

    skalky Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    i ended up purchasing the eVGA fx 5200 128mb for 80 dollars, I havn't tried it yet but I think it will be sufficient
  11. frasier

    frasier Newcomer, in training Posts: 43


    just for anyone elses information, i bought a PCI pny verto geforce fx 5200 128 DDR and i can run half life 2 and counter strike source fine. i have half life 2 set on medium graphics and 2x AA and i don't have any problems. Although i really should get a new card...
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