Dell Dimension 3000 - Suggestions for Graphics Upgrade

By randyh ยท 120 replies
Jul 20, 2005
  1. Brand new to the forum - bear with me if this has been bounced around before.I knew when I purchased the Dimension 3000 that it was not a "gamer's" machine but still I am disappointed with its graphic capabilities. I understand that my only option to improve the graphics short of changing motherboard, etc is to upgrade with a PCI card. Apparently Nvidia cards on the order of Fx 5600, 5700LE are pretty good cards as far as PCi is concerned. Not easy to find here in Winnipeg, Canada, but I'm looking.

    What I'm wondering is if there are any Dell owners with similar PC's who may have gone this route? if so, results? am I correct in assuming that even with only PCI card upgrade, it will be a big improvement over onboard graphics? (Intel Extreme Graphics2 82865G). If I upgrade I will probably have retailer install as I am not that comfortable with the idea of trying it myself.

    Any help/comments/suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.


    Dimension 3000
    Processor - Pentium 4 3.0 GHz
    Processor Speed - 2.92 GHz
    RAM - 512 MB
    OS - Windows XP Home
    OS version - 5.1.2600
    Int. Graphics - Intel 82865G
  2. vegasgmc

    vegasgmc TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,377

    You should have an AGP slot so I'd foreget about a PCI card if you want to do any real gaming. Radeon 9800 Pro's and XT's have gone down in price lately. Those would be a good match for your system. Id also get a 256mb card if you can afford it. A PCI card will be a big improvement over onboard graphics but unless you can find a FX5700 SE, the other PCI video cards arent going to work well for newer games.
  3. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,186   +469

    I checked the Dell website and it appears that the Dimension 3000 has 3 PCI slots but no AGP. So it seems a PCI card is your only choice other than getting a new PC.
  4. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    Agreed with mailpup, pci only. I have a 2300(predecessor to 2350, 2400, and now the 3000), and I wanted graphics, so I got a new motherboard and replaced the old one(I got a gigabyte 8IG1000MK from It wasn't too hard. It's easiest to just buy another copy of xp then and install.

    Pci cards, 5700le 128bit, 5500oc(bfg), and the 5600, are the cards of choice, although none are top of the line any more. They'll run basic stuff, or better stuff at lower setttings.
  5. vegasgmc

    vegasgmc TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,377

    No AGP slot in something that new? That sucks and a half. Even eMachines have AGP. If you want a new card the only option is an FX 5200. But keep checking Ebay for 5700's. Stay away from any 64bit card. The 5700's came in 128bit and 64bit. The 5700SE would be a prize. It ran at the same speeds as a regular 5700 but they are rare. A newer 5500 shouldnt be too bad.

    ROCHESTER UK TS Rookie Posts: 23

    5700 le

    I'm listing my 5700le 256mb on ebay this ebay name is allenbrad.
  7. Xexon11

    Xexon11 TS Rookie

    Great PCI card just for you!

    I have my very own Dell Dimension 3000. It too was slow and quiet frankly pathetic when it came to gaming and even simply the internet! I hate that Intel Extreme 2! So I first logged on to, the best place to find name brand electronics (for now atleast) and bought an extra stick of Ram. When that wasn't enough, I knew that I had to rid myself once and for all of that Intel Extreme graphics, which again, I hate. To my utter amazement I gasped when I found out that my Dell 3000 lacks not only a PCI Express but an AGP! What was I going to do? Well, I again logged onto, as well as,, and countless others until I found the best PCI card on the market for the best price on the market. From the ATI Radeon 9200 series, the Powercolor Radeon 9250, 256mb, 128 bit, TV-out, DVI, S-video, and yes, PCI slot. This card is amazing, I've had it for over a week now and can't get enough of it (Silent Hill 3, Half-life 2). On you'll find it for $129.95, that's to expensive! But that is the going rate. But of course, at! Its is a whopping $74.00. My Dell Dimension 3000 couldn't be any better (of course it still needs hyper-threading technology, a Audigy Z5, 2-4 GB of Ram, and an extra $1,000 of goodies, but thats for a later time). Remember too to buy a GPU fan, this card can get pretty hot. I recommend 3 fans, thats what I have and a good cooling pipe and heat sink system( Kingwin is a good brand). Hope this is helpful my dell brother!

  8. Xexon11

    Xexon11 TS Rookie

    Dimension 3000 new Video Card

    POWERCOLOR R92P-LD3 Radeon 9250 256MB 128-bit DDR PCI Video Card. Here is the exact link to the product page:

    Or you could buy direct at:

    Newegg is of course the best value, and you'll probably receive your card by Fedex within 3-4 days.

    This is redicously easy to install, I assure that you could install this card yourself.

    Good day.
  9. randyh

    randyh TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Xenon11 - thanks for the info. Interesting - most responses on the Dell forums are "stay away from Radeon" cards. I will have a look for local (Canada) prices on the card. Newegg does not ship to Canada.
  10. Xexon11

    Xexon11 TS Rookie

    Try the other links I gave you! is the easiest route to take to buy this card. But may be the Charm, with a slightly lower price. Try this great site, the quality and value is unbeatable!

    Link: - This should bring you right to the powercolor device, it's about $89.00, just a little more than's $74.00. But that's the next cheapest price on the market, either that or you pay $129.95 which is far to much!

    Good News! is coming to Canada, new press release, they'll be shipping there hopefully within a year, or so I have heard.
  11. djstubbs23

    djstubbs23 TS Rookie

    How easy was it to install it. Was it easy to disable the on-board intel graphics card?
  12. C_Conqueror

    C_Conqueror TS Rookie Posts: 140

    You really shouldn't pay any extra to have a graphics card installed in pci. All you have to do is snap it into place in the pci slot and put in the cd then follow the directions but I may be wrong since I have never disabled onboard vedio so that may a little more difficult, don't take my word for it.
  13. Turk

    Turk TS Rookie

    Radeon 9250

    I have PCI Radeon 9250, and can't play Battlefield 2. Again it is PCI!!!
    Anyone can help please?
    I dont want to go thru a new motherboard and new pc process. Just bought this Dimension 3000 2 months ago.

    I am very aggrivated.

  14. Turk

    Turk TS Rookie

    Disabling the intel video.

    Go to control panel, Performance and Maintenance, System, Hardware, Device manager. Locate your intel graphics card right click, properties, and disable it.
  15. Happyreefer

    Happyreefer TS Rookie

    Help with that dell 3000 and radeon 9250 PCI card

    Ive had no luck with the installation of this card, I just get a black screen after powering up my system, Ive made sure my integrated video driver is disabled before this and still no luck. if anyone has some insight with the installation of a Radeon 9250 PCI video card into a Dell Dimension 3000 please post or shoot me and email with a little help.

    Thanks for any insight

  16. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    Did you select pci graphics in the bios? Many systems have a selector, like Agp, pci, integrated, etc. Choose pci if you have the option. Do you know the card is good and not a DOA(dead on arrival), that sometimes happens. To test you could try to install it in another pc if you like.
  17. icantwinn

    icantwinn TS Rookie Posts: 26

    i have the same computer and have been trying to figure out what motherboard it has i cant find it on dells website anywhere. do you know what type of mobo it is? if so plz tell me im wanting to upgrade my video card aswell and wanting to add some ram a few other things but cant figure out what toye of mobo it is
  18. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

  19. icantwinn

    icantwinn TS Rookie Posts: 26

    thanks man thats a nice little tool and the card seems to be pretty decent i guess ill buy it and see how it goes i was looking for a nvidia card to begin with. heres what that tool says about my mobo

    Field Value
    Motherboard Properties
    Motherboard ID <DMI>
    Motherboard Name Dell Dimension 3000

    Front Side Bus Properties
    Bus Type Intel NetBurst
    Bus Width 64-bit
    Real Clock 133 MHz (QDR)
    Effective Clock 533 MHz
    Bandwidth 4266 MB/s

    Memory Bus Properties
    Bus Type DDR SDRAM
    Bus Width 64-bit
    Real Clock 167 MHz (DDR)
    Effective Clock 333 MHz
    Bandwidth 2666 MB/s

    Chipset Bus Properties
    Bus Type Intel Hub Interface
    Bus Width 8-bit
    Real Clock 67 MHz (QDR)
    Effective Clock 267 MHz
    Bandwidth 267 MB/s

    Motherboard Manufacturer
    Company Name Dell Computer Corporation
    Product Information
    BIOS Download
  20. bassguitar15

    bassguitar15 TS Rookie

    Same problem that i had. I have a Dell 3000 and a Radeon 9250 PCI. Seems the PCI is not powerful enough. Your only alternitave is to buy and install a new motherboard.
  21. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,186   +469

    The sad fact is whenever you buy a low end "value" PC, it is NOT a gaming computer and attempts to make it so will be met with only limited success. Whether it is brand new or not is irrelevant. Surf the internet, play DVDs, rip CDs, write documents, make greeting cards, etc. A low end, budget PC is fine for these tasks but to expect it to work well with high end gaming is unrealistic.
  22. teentech

    teentech TS Rookie Posts: 20

    Yes thats true but depends on what type of games they are and what you havfe running while you are playing games i have maxed out all of my upgrades and then some and im running real smooth now
  23. teentech

    teentech TS Rookie Posts: 20

    I have the dimension 3000 too what CPU do you have?

    Becouse if you got the Dimension with the Celeron you are in bad shape let me know and let me know what your running as far as specs thanks
  24. teentech

    teentech TS Rookie Posts: 20

    get that clock speed up it makes a huge difference and get dual channel 512mb ram each it helps so much if ytou do eny gaming
  25. AtK SpAdE

    AtK SpAdE TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,495

    and how do you suppose he does that? you cant even look at the FSB setting on a dell, let alone change them.
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