Newbie Video card help needed......

By TANSOCAL ยท 14 replies
Jan 30, 2004
  1. Hello,

    Ive been reading the threads at this site and I wanted to say it looks like there are alot of smart and nice people on this site.
    Would like to thank you ahead of time for your help....

    Here is my issue. I have a GeForce 2 400/mx and need to upgrade my card to a mid range card to help my gaming fun. My system cant handle a high end card due to only being a 133mghz
    system, etc etc etc.

    I want to get a card that would be the easiest to exchange, hopefully pop out and pop in, though I know nothing is ever that easy. I am fairly competent at following directions and can do more then the basic user. I was thinking it might be easier to buy another Geforce like a ti4600 or something in that area since I already have a Geforce, even though I am interested in a ATI radeon 9700/9800 pro. As far as power supply, I could have one added at compusa or bestbuy if needed. I run on aol/dsl if that has anything to do with Also, I only have a 4x agp slot, and I know most of the hi end systems have a 8x, though I heard there is not much loss using a 8x card in a 4x system. So before I start upgrading my mobo, etc. I wanted to try a new card to see the effects first, but Im sure anything is better then my current 32mb card. I would like to thank you in advance for your advice and help................. have a great day.

    here are my specs.


    Windows Millennium Edition (build 4.90.3000) Gateway 4000676

    Processor a Main Circuit Board b
    933 megahertz Intel Pentium III
    32 kilobyte primary memory cache
    256 kilobyte secondary memory cache
    Board: Intel Corporation D815EEA AAA19243-403

    Bus Clock: 133 megahertz
    BIOS: Intel Corp. EA81510A.15A.0006.P04.0007070958 07/07/2000
    Drives Memory Modules c,d
    30.72 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
    16.08 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space

    IDE-CD R/RW 8x4x32 [CD-ROM drive]
    PIONEER DVD-ROM DVD-115 [CD-ROM drive]
    Generic floppy disk drive (3.5")

    IBM-DTLA-307030 [Hard drive] (30.74 GB) -- drive 0, s/n YKDYKTLK002, rev TX4GA50C, SMART Status: Healthy 512 Megabytes Installed Memory

    Slot 'DIMM1' has 256 MB
    Slot 'DIMM2' has 256 MB
    Slot 'DIMM3' is Empty
    Local Drive Volumes

    c: (on drive 0) 30.72 GB 16.08 GB free

    NVIDIA GeForce2 MX/MX 400 [Display adapter]
    Gateway EV910 [Monitor]
    Actiontec Home DSL AU5 LAN Adapter
    Creative SB Live! Series (WDM)
    Game Port for Creative SB Live!
    HID-compliant game controller
    Logitech Microphone (Pro 4000)
    Wave Device for Voice Modem


    for all you help, please feel free to email if you like.

  2. snowman

    snowman TS Rookie Posts: 183

    mid range would be geforce 5700ultra or a radeon 9600 pro both perform well and would work in your system. at you could get either of them for around $150 USD.
  3. Masque

    Masque TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,058

    Not a real bad system. What price point are you looking at? Heck, even my old Radeon64 VIVO still ran everything I wanted it to before I popped my new Sapphire 9600 Pro Ultimate in. And that is sweet as well, albeit restricted a bit on my AGP 4X motherboard.

    But that aside, it's a sweet card and Newegg has it for $179 but if you search around there, they have a number of good Radeon cards at good prices. Just try to avoid the SE or LE versions.

    Dang, snowman beat me to it. :p
  4. snowman

    snowman TS Rookie Posts: 183

  5. acidosmosis

    acidosmosis TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,350

    Tansocal: I think it would be more benficial to you to upgrade your system and upgrade your video card later, but here is my advice as far as a video card.

    Directx8 Cards:
    Geforce4 TI4800SE 128MB $138.99

    Directx9 Cards:
    Nvidia GeforceFX5600 128MB $97.00
    Nvidia GeforceFX5600 Ultra 128MB $120.00
    Nvidia GeforceFX5700 128MB $169.00

    Depending on your budget one of those would be a safe bet. Also, the FX cards would work well for you in the future if you plan on upgrading your processor/ram/motherboard because everything is moving towards Dx9.

    TANSOCAL TS Rookie Topic Starter



    So I have to run a video card that complies with the dx version I am running..or can I run any of those cards everyone mentioned..???

  7. acidosmosis

    acidosmosis TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,350

    Well, what I am saying is in the future more applications will use DirectX9 so in that aspect of things it would be nice to have a Dx9 card, though most applications are using Dx8 right now. If you want to play games such as Half Life 2 then you will need a Dx9 card (although your system most likely won't run HL2) :p.

    Just something to think about in your decision of which card to get.

    Oh and yea to better answer your question, say you want to play a Dx9 game, then you will need a Dx9 compatible card. Nvidia's FX line support Dx9. :)

    TANSOCAL TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hello All Again........<sigh>

    Well...Im back. After considering all of the comments, I started looking for a GeForce fx 5700/ultra or regular 5700. I thought it would be easy, but shesshhhhh lol

    I went to and found a geforce 5700 for around $ 159.00 but it says DDR256 unlike the ultra which says DDRII128, and also the regular 5700:
    Chipset/Core Speed: GeForce FX5700/425MHz Memory/Effective Speed: 256MB DDR/550MHz

    is different from ultra which is:
    Chipset/Core Speed: GeForce FX 5700ULTRA/475MHz Memory/Effective Speed: 128MB DDRII/900MHz

    Being as smart as I am <lol> I gather the DDRII is better....heh
    < I knew college would come in handy>

    And if that being true, the next Question Is Manufacture...<sigh>

    XFX- $ 169
    CHAINTECH- $179
    EVGA " "
    GIGABYTE " "
    ABIT $ 192
    CHAINTEC $196 <Why 2 different models .??????>
    ALBATRON $189
    PNY $ 222


    Why the different prices...??? Just because Of mfg. ????

    Also some come with cables/acces.

    some have 1,2,3 even 4 cds. Cables the same...different..???

    Well Ive blabbed enough...If someone can please,hopefully for the last time, gimme some info on the above, It would be very greatly appreciated...........

    Thanks again...


    TANSOCAL TS Rookie Topic Starter


    My next thread will be about the power supply........lmao

    I bet you all can't wait for that one <smiles>

  10. snowman

    snowman TS Rookie Posts: 183

    its up to you on which card you want. each manufacturer has to put out the card to certain specs so i dont think one would be lesser than another except some might use cheaper parts. but i would go with which ever fits your budget. the ultra versions are the higher end version of the card and are made a little faster. i would get one of them if you can afford it. as for the cd's they might have drivers for the card on them or other bundled software. maybe even games. companies put them there so you buy their card. and the cables are for the features the card may have, like tv or dvi out.
  11. p34c3

    p34c3 TS Rookie

    i think 8x cards can be run on 4 x agp slot..
  12. manacloud1

    manacloud1 TS Rookie Posts: 21


    i bought my brother an ati radeon 9800 pro and now he has no gaming problems at all. I say go for that its reliable and easy to install.
  13. Cballero

    Cballero TS Rookie

    Additional video card options?

    This is a great post on the D815EEA video upgrade options. I have an interest in 3D animation and a little gaming, so later this year I'll be purchasing a newer system specifically for that. right now I'm using the same mobo as Tansocal and have tweaked my system for better PC and DSL performance. I only need limited speed and a low-memory fix right now 'till I upgrade later this year (I can't run more than 2-3 apps w/out low memory freezes and slowdowns).

    Brief specs on my system:
    Windows 98SE (latest OS update) / DirectX 9.0c / latest hardware drivers
    D815EEA w/integrated Audio, LAN, 4x AGP (and I assume a factory CL3 128MB 100MHz RAM)
    30GB ATA Primary Fat32 and 60GB ATA slave (routinely fragmented)
    15" Elements Cyclone 7A monitor / toggle between 800 and 1024 16-bit res

    This motherboard only accepts 512RAM w/up to 133MHz speed. The Crucial memory web site suggests some video card upgrades, but only their 128MB 9200se 8x AGP card runs under Windows 98 and costs $55 (will the mobo's 4x AGP slow it down much?). My budget's small, so should I do:

    a) an OS upgrade / 256 or 512RAM / higher-end* video card, or
    b) keep Windows 98 SE / 256 or 512RAM / a cheaper 64**, 128 or 256MB 9200SE card, or
    c) a balance in between? (I would remove the 128 slower RAM chip, too)

    *Will a higher-end AGP card suffer performance due to the mb 4x AGP?

    **I also found 1 or 2 64MB 9200SE cards online for about $30-35. I highly doubt I can find a cheaper video card option, right? If I do go cheap, I may spend ~$100 if I get one 2CL 256MB RAM and a low cost 9200SE.

    Thanks to everyone in advance!! :D CB
  14. nickc

    nickc TechSpot Paladin Posts: 923   +11

    the 8x AGP card will suffer a little, but very little in the 4x AGP slot. and the next MB you get will def have the 8x AGP slot.
  15. Cballero

    Cballero TS Rookie

    Thanks Nick!

    I may not need the card though since it would only speed CAD and big graphic games according to some related posts I've read. In that case, I may get a GPA video RAM instead costing about $10-15 (and I think it was either/or between installing the GPA and AGP video card).

    But if it will speed up editing digital camera images in Photoshop and video editing from video cameras, Flash animations and 3D Blender renderings, though, I'll definitely get either the 64 or 128 Radeon card from Crucial (as well as the faster RAM).
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