TechSpot

New graphics card, ideas?

By CaptainRobbie
May 25, 2010
  1. Hi i recently boguht a new pc, im not much of a computer guy, so bare with the pc noob please :) im having some trouble with my graphics card, it's an ''nvidia geforce 9200 integrated - 256mb''. And basically the game gets seriously low fps on anything over 800 x 600 resolution and minimal texture quality etc. So i was wondering if getting a new graphics card would fix this, or if maybe its because of another component in my PC?

    Basically, i like to play FPS's, but mainly just CoD:Mw2.

    I want to stick to a budget of around £80 - £100 ideally, but i udnerstand what offers you need to make for my shitty PC :D

    Computer Specs:
    ---Motherboard - Packard Bell WMCP78M
    ---Memory - 3GB DDR2
    ---Graphics - Nvidia Geforce 9200 integrated 256Mb --->(think this is the problem)
    ---CPU/Speed - AMD Athlon II X3, 2.66Ghz Triple Core
    ---Power Supply Make/Model - Hipro, Size: "140Lx130hx63w"
    ---Watt output/Amperage - 250W

    5. From UK, Thanks to anyone that helps me out!!! :)
     
  2. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    Yes, the integrated graphics is the problem.

    If you're interested in DX11, go with the Radeon HD 5750. It will cost a little over £100.

    If DX10 is fine with you, the HD 4770 or HD 4850 will be pretty good.

    You will also have to change your PSU. Consider the Corsair 400CX if you're going for any of the above cards.
     
  3. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    I support what ritwik7 said.

    And I'll just add that you don't really need the DX11 at this moment. Might be good for future-proofing, but its not necessary.

    The PSU is definitely going to be a problem. Not entirely sure if your computer uses propriatery PSU: someone'll need to check that out. If it does, some pin-rearreanger would be needed :D
     
  4. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,906   +90

  5. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,571   +103

    You might even be able to pick up a 5770 for ~£100 (£112 from Overclockers.co.uk).
    Shop around, I've seen some cards for cheaper prices on some of the big names like Play.com and Amazon. Sometimes their prices seem to be a rip off and other times they have the cheapest price on one or two items. This would even let you play through more demanding games like Battlefield:Bad Company 2...

    Tom's Hardware VGA Charts 2010 (Battlefield:Bad Company 2 - 1680x1050, 4AA, 8AF, High Quality, DX10)

    And this review from Guru3d of the performance of different cards in Modern Warfare 2 (even though its with a fairly high end Intel i7 processor) should give you some idea what you can expect from your new card.
    A 5770 should give you around 60 fps(usually a required level as many monitors have a refresh rate of 60Hz at higher resolutions so this prevents visual "tearing") without problem in MW2, and thats at 1920x1080. But as others have stated you might need to pickup a slightly higher wattage PSU. A 400w should be enough for your system, but if you can pick up a decent branded model (enermax, thermalright, thermaltake, antec, tagen etc.) with a higher wattage for a good price its worth it as it could be used for future systems too.
     
  6. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    Arris means 340W.

    I think the biggest you can get these days is 1500W anyway.

    In the case of PSUs, the brand kinda matters. If you've got a choice between a lower Wattage with a brand, and a higher Wattage unbranded, go with the brand. You can't imagine the sort of crap they put in (or don't put in) unbranded PSUs.

    I've personally bought a 650W PSU unbranded for just AUD$18 (US$0.90=AUD$1). Upon opening it up, I found.... a very bare circuit board.

    Personally I don't know what makes a PSU work, but I know I want more gadgets and gizmos in my PSU.
     
  7. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,571   +103

    Actually I meant 400w, but you get the idea. And brand > high wattage as CHM says.
     
  8. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    Thanks for all the responses guys! :D
    The radeon cards sound like a good deal to me, my screen is using 1366 X 768 resolution, so i gues sid like that resolution in game too right?

    ill looka t a few PSU's aswell, can you reccomend any good shops? Cheers for all the feedback! :)

    my steam name is captainrobbie if you want to add btw :D

    EDIT: also, how would i put my new graphics card in, if mine is 'integrated'
    (sorry for the noob questions haha)
     
  9. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,571   +103

    Yes, using a resolution which matches your screens native resolution is best.

    I usually end up with stuff from scan.co.uk, overclockers.co.uk or sometimes aria.co.uk. Depends who has the best price. Used to use komplett.co.uk but they pulled out of the UK market :S

    You need to check that your motherboard has a PCI Express slot. You can either look to see if it has one that matches the pictures in the link, or lookup your motherboard on the web and check its specifications.
     
  10. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    Right so im considering the Corsair 4OOW CX PSU.

    And the radeon HD 4770 -
    are second hand graphics cards a wise idea?
     
  11. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,571   +103

    Only ever bought one card second hand and had no problems with it but I guess it can always be risky as you don't know if the card has been run overclocked, been damaged by having increased voltages put through it or anything else.

    With the card I recently bought I found it came with a double lifetime warranty. Which means that even if someone else buys it, the warranty carries over. The brand is XFX, so a second hand card of that brand might be a safe investment. Not sure how long they have been supplying that warranty with their cards though.

    I know your PSU is quite low wattage, but I'd be tempted to get the video card first. Try it out, and if you find any graphics problems, then get the new PSU. As to connections for powering the graphics cards, new ones often come with adaptors/splitters so you can connect them up without having to change PSU or buy adaptors yourself.
     
     
  12. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    Personally, unless its a very outdated piece of hardware, I wouldn't touch second hand stuff.

    The number of people who upgrade their computers often enough that the stuff they wanna get rid off second hand are still pretty good are few and far between.

    The number of people who muck around with their stuff, and find a problem which pops up once in awhile.... TONS. Just check out these forums over a few months, you'll get tons of people asking for advice for little niggly problems, and replacing the bad problem part.

    These parts may work 99% of the time, but its that 1% of the time thats going to drive you nuts.
     
  13. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 8,457   +228

    It's a bit of a gamble buying used components. If you knew the history of the part, such as a friend owned the part and you knew he didn't abuse it, then you might consider it, otherwise I don't think it's such a good idea.
     
  14. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    Apparently the Motherboard i have ( WMCP78M ) doesent have a ;'full size PCI express slot'
    does this mean i cant fit my new graphics card in if i buy one, could i get an adaptor of some sort? Cheers.
     
  15. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,571   +103

    This unofficial spec and support info for your motherboard suggests that it has both a PCI-Express 1x and a 16x slot. The 16x one is what is needed for a graphics card. Have you opened up the machine and checked to see if there is a physical match for what a PCI-Express 16x slot looks like? See my previous link, PCI-Express, for an image including a picture of a 16x slot.

    [​IMG]
    PCI Express slots (from top to bottom: x4 , x16, x1 and x16), compared to a traditional 32-bit PCI slot (bottom), as seen on DFI's LanParty nF4 SLI-DR.
     
  16. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    No, unfortunately i havent opened my case yet. For some reason my packard bell case, has a little metal bit poking out over the handle to lift up the side of the case, meaning i cant open it - i think it might be for warranty reasons ... :/
     
  17. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,906   +90

    Can you get a picture up of the side of your case and the metal bit? I could be wrong, but you have to be able to blow the dust out of the thing to keep it from overheating.
     
  18. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    I think i have 2 external PCI slots actually... on the back near the bottom of the PC
     
  19. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,906   +90

    I don't know what your seeing, but they are not 'external PCI slots'
     
  20. ultragrey

    ultragrey TS Rookie Posts: 69

    HD 4830 should be better choice within the range.
    [​IMG]
     
  21. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    Ok i've opened my case, and there is one black slot on the motherboard which is about 3 inches/8cm long (ish)
    is that a x16 or a x8?
     
  22. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    x16 and x8 looks exactly the same.
     
  23. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    How do i know which one it is then? :/
     
  24. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    Well, mainly you check your motherboard's specs.

    But that doesn't matter. All you need to know is that the size is right. If your graphics card is for x16, and your motherboard has an x8, it WILL work, and there isn't a performance penalty or anything.
     
  25. CaptainRobbie

    CaptainRobbie TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 27

    Ok, so about 8cm is a x16 / x8 slot then?
     
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