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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Alrighty. So I want to purchase a newer graphics card, I just have no idea what is supported by my system. I dloaded WinAudit which wouldn't even give me a name for my motherboard. I really want at least 512 MB graphics card, yet I don't know if I should go out and purchase one only to have it not supported.
what should I do????
 

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From Love and Limerence
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It was said how in the post above yours. You can use CPU-Z, and there's also Everest.

Given the rest of your system, I'm going to guess you have an OEM with a 915 or maybe 946 chipset on an Intel motherboard, perhaps with a PCI-E x16 slot, and an OEM PSU. If so, you're pretty limited, but you do have options.

Honestly, I'd look at adding more RAM too. 1GB is low these days, especially since you have Windows Vista, and especially since your video card is a Hyper Memory or Turbo Cache card, since those two technologies take system RAM for themselves. I say 2GB is minimum for Windows Vista (and that's for 32-bit, which you likely have anyway), but you want more if possible (if your uses warrant it and/or going with 64-bit).

I'd recommend you just add another GB of RAM, and a decent midlevel video card that the OEM PSU will cope with, and live with it. Even just that will help tremendously on it's own, but it won't make it higher end, and it's about that would be worth putting into a system like that.

You could use a scanner like the one on Crucial's website to determine how many memory banks you have total versus how many are occupied, since you'll need to know this before getting any RAM, but since you need to look inside the PC itself for the PSU label, you may as well check how many RAM slots you have total, and then how many are occupied.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
he must have edited the post after i posted and i'm running xp pro. and i am in the process of purchasing more memory.

Mboard: OHJO54
chipset: Intel i945P/PL/G/GZ Rev A2
southbridge: 82801GB (ICH7/R)
LPCIO: SMSC

4 Mem Slots
Pentium D 820 two cores
 

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From Love and Limerence
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6,574 Posts
You could drop a 65nm Pentium DUal-core or Core 2 Duo (Conroe or Allendale, no Wolfdales and no quad cores) in with that chipset too. It's something to consider, but also considering that adding a new CPU, GPU, and RAM, is a good 2/3 of what makes a PC a PC, so it might be worth going new from scratch. I'm not sure if the 65nm Core 2 CPUs can be found new except in maybe a few places either though.

If you can't afford an entirely new PC though, definitely get more RAM. I thought I remember you posting that you had Windows Vista, but I recommend upgrading to 2GB anyway. If you upgrade the GPU for games, they will want more RAM anyway. The CPU will not be super fast, but double the RAM and get, say, a 9600GT or so, and you could be in business for some medium settings on many modern games.

You still, however, need to find out how many RAM slots you have total, and how many are occupied, as well as the PSU, before any real recommendations can be given.
 

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he must have edited the post after i posted and i'm running xp pro. and i am in the process of purchasing more memory.

Mboard: OHJO54
chipset: Intel i945P/PL/G/GZ Rev A2
southbridge: 82801GB (ICH7/R)
LPCIO: SMSC

4 Mem Slots
Pentium D 820 two cores
I never edited the post lol.

Anyways yeah, now all we need is your PSU info. Because that's also one of the most important parts of this story. We need to know what your PSU is capable of course and if it can handle the future card you're planning to get. :)

PSU = Power Supply.
 

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From Love and Limerence
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You guys are asking him stuff he probably doesn't know. This is probably an OEM PC, and considering it has a Pentium D in it (power hungry), the options for adding a video card on that PSU will likely be limited.

The way I see it is, you have a few viable options, only two (maybe a third) of which really make sense.

1. Give it a pretty big overhaul, upgrading the power supply (PSU), processor (CPU), memory (RAM), and video card (GPU). Even though it's a major overhaul, it can be done cheap, that is, if you go second hand and know what you're doing. You could drop a Core 2 in there, but it'd have to a 65nm one (no Wolfdale's, which is all I'm seeing on Newegg for Core 2s). You could also double the memory, and get a mid-range PSU and GPU. In other words, don't splurge and keep it moderate, and the cost might make it a worthwhile, if only barely, option. However, this much may be beyond you, and any possible warranties and such will be broken and left crying. Upgrading RAM and adding a video card is easy work, but swapping out a processor and upgrading the power supply is more work, and I wouldn't recommend it to anyone who is just learning their stuff.

2. Add more RAM and be done with it. This may help overall, but maybe not. 1GB is enough for Windows XP, even for some gaming if it's not newer stuff, and you're original dissatisfaction stemmed from not being able to play games more than lack of memory, so even though it would help overall, this would be a pointless upgrade to you. If you're using it for a basic PC, 1GB will be enough.

3. Forget it and/or get a new PC.

Those are the only three that really make any sense. In my opinion, the third option, the forget it part, is the most obvious choice. Adding RAM will possibly help, but not towards your goal, and the first option is probably too far above you to make it worth the while.

So, sorry to say, but I'd first say forget it.

This means it's up to you to decide how willing and committed you are to this. If you're not really committed, then it's not worth it to do more than forget it. If you are, then consider learning more, and then decide between option one, or a new PC entirely, depending on both funds and how much performance you want.

Edit: I guess upgrading the GPU would be possible too, but due to the power supply, you'll be limited, not so much by the fact that "it's a 305 watt PSU", but more because that Pentium D is already taking alot of it, so the maximum you'd be able to get likely wont even be enough higher than what you got to warrant the cost, even if it would be a bit better, so you're back to square one of pretty much forgetting about it.
 

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If you want to maximize that quantity, though, I'd say... definitely consider a GeForce 9400 GT or HD4550. Both of them shouldn't use up too much power, and if OpenGL or HD playback are not important to you then the HD4550 will do a splendid job. Both cards are rated for less than 30W power consumption (HD4550 is 25W max IIRC?) so I think you won't run into PSU problems either, and they both should be quite a step up from that X300 you have there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thank you to all whom have helped me. SO.
Today I start the ridiculous journey of basically keeping only the tower of my computer and upgrading everything.
I should eventually have 2 Gb ram with a new cpu and new psu with a new GPU installed as well.
newegg= ~400$.
worth it. i'll eat human flesh if that lets me play DAO quicker.

thinking about the i7 but might go with the phenom 2 x 2
 

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i7 with only 400$ might be impossible, rather feasible for phenom though. Is that really your total budget?
It's actually more proper to say you're buying a new rig rather than upgrading. :p
 
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