TechSpot

Trying to make the most of my new widescreen monitor

By superblonde
Jul 10, 2010
  1. Hello, everyone! I'm really hoping someone here can help me.

    Just had to buy a new monitor (old one kicked the bucket), so I'm now the owner of a new widescreen monitor. The problem is that my computer is no spring chicken and has no widescreen settings. I've got it set to 1024x768, which works for now, but the native resolution for this monitor is 1366x768, and the black bands along the sides of the screen are driving me nuts, plus, I figure if I've got the monitor, why not take advantage of the larger screen?

    I know I need to update the video card, but I don't know what the computer can take. I've had the computer for a while, and it still suits my needs just fine. I'm not a gamer - the only game I play is Farmville on Facebook, lol. I just want to utilize my monitor, since I bought it.

    Let me see if I can answer questions about my system. (Don't laugh, please.)

    Windows XP Pro (SP-3)
    Motherboard: Intel D845GRG AAA84341-204
    1.0 GB RAM
    CPU: 2.80 gigahertz Intel Pentium 4
    Current video card: RAGE 128 Pro
    The sticker for the power supply is in an awkward position, and I can't read the wattage, etc, but I can see that it's an SPI FSP300-60BT (12V), if that helps.

    I don't know if that answers all your questions, but I hope so. I'm not as computer literate as I'm sure you all are, but I'm sure I could handle replacing a video card. Is there a video card out there that would do the job without me having to shell out a lot of money or replace anything else? I don't need anything fancy - I'm not into graphics intense games or anything, just something I could fix myself, if at all possible. My other option is to take it into my computer shop, and I don't want to do that. It would be 2 and a half weeks until I got my computer back. :(

    Thanks for any advice anyone can offer!
     
  2. EXCellR8

    EXCellR8 The Conservative Posts: 2,278

    Your motherboard supports AGP graphics bus, which is an older type of interface but there are still quite a few options; most cards are relatively cheap nowadays. The bad news is that i think the motherboard can only handle AGP 4x and 2x speeds, so if you go with something newer and faster it's going to be limited in the performance dept. In other words, the fastest AGP cards are 8x, but you can still use one (i.e. it will only run @ 4x speeds max).

    The Rage series is pretty ancient by todays standards, and good AGP cards are becoming harder and harder to come by. You can look around on Newegg.com or visit your local computer shop, but your best bet may be ebay or Amazon.com. Most retailers don't stock a lot of AGP products, but you can still find some great cards on ebay for less money.

    Personally, I would look for a 5200FX (or 6200GT) or something along the lines of the Radeon X600. They are AGP 8x, but are still good cards to use on a 4x machine and sport 256MB video memory. You may be able to find some older cards, but the driver support will be better for the newer ones; you won't have to worry about making the 1366x768 screen resolution :)

    Here is the guide for your board btw...

    http://downloadmirror.intel.com/15328/eng/D845GRG_D845GBV_ProductGuide_English.pdf
     
  3. superblonde

    superblonde TS Rookie Topic Starter

    EXCellR8,

    Just so you know, you are my hero right now. :) Thank you SO much! I'm going to go check those out right now.

    And thanks for the link, too! I've saved the file for future reference. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
     
  4. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,055   +970

    This number; "SPI FSP300-60BT (12V)" sounds like a "Fortran Source" PSU model number. Even if it isn't, I'd still be willing to bet that the "300" part of it is the wattage.
     
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