TechSpot

need advice on video card!

By JD23
Aug 18, 2006
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  1. Hi all! I'm new here and just have a quick question! I would really appreciate any feedback! I'm looking for a new video card. I am mainly wanting to play WoW or Civilization IV, I just got my new comp yesterday and found out that the graphics card sucks and won't play either one because it lacks HW Transform & Lighting...so now I have to find one that does! It needs to be PCI Express, I would like to get something for $100 or under...

    Here's what I'm running
    Alienware 3550
    Intel Pentium D Processor 930 w/Dual Core technology 3.0Ghz 900Mhz FSB
    160 GB Serial ATA 3Gb/s 7,200 RPM w/NCQ & 8MB cache
    2 GB dual channel ddr2 sdram at 533 mhz

    If you need to know anything else let me know! Also, is it hard to install? The only thing we ever installed before was a dvd burner and some memory..is it any harder than that?

    thanks in advance!
  2. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    Here is a pretty good card for your budget and will play all of you games: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814131007

    Installation is pretty simple. Open case, remove the metal tab covering PCIe slot on the back of the case, insert card, connect power cord, and close the case. You will need to make sure that your power supply will handle the extra demand that the card will require. Pop open you case and see how many watts it is rated at (not the max watts, the average watts) and how many amps are on the 12v line(s).
  3. JD23

    JD23 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    sweet! thanks nickslick! :) Oh yeah.... Alienware 485 watt power supply..
  4. JD23

    JD23 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Oh yeah, how do you tell if the graphics card has HW Transform & Lighting?
  5. JD23

    JD23 TS Rookie Topic Starter

  6. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    To be honest, I wouldn't use any of those cards. For the extra $10 or so you get a card that has GDDR3 memory (vs. GDDR2 or regular DDR), a 256 bit memory interface (vs. 128 and 64 bit), more pixel pipelines, faster core and memory clock speeds. Also, some of the GS cards use some of your system memory (can't tell for sure it the one you chose does or not).
    No wooory about the HW Transform & Lighting, this card will handle your games no sweat. This also happens to be a fairly popular card around here.
  7. Face of LA

    Face of LA TS Rookie Posts: 186


    Get the first one! its the best out of them, believe that, it will give u a better performace N Ur games will run faster N Smoother,
  8. JD23

    JD23 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    awesome! thanks again nickslick! Sounds like the link you posted is a lot better for the price! :)
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