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  1. #1
    3 Star Lounger
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    video card purchasing help

    okay, i want to buy a new(er) video card for my pc. i have a p3 700 w/256mb ram. the only real reason i want to buy a new video card is to be able to play a couple of games that require it. they don't require much more than what i have now, which is a 32mb matrox agp card that's as old as the pc (i built the pc about three years ago). for the sake of saving money, i'm going to probably get a card with 64mb ram instead of 128mb ram.

    i want to spend as little as possible as this isn't a necessity. i only game a little bit (mostly playing games that are older anyway, like jedi knight 2, alien vs predator 1 and 2, etc.) so i don't need something really high grade. i just want something that will allow me to play these games as well as on another pc i've played them on (it has an intel 82845G graphics controller w/64 mb ram, but also has a p4 2 ghz processor).

    i have a few web sites that i can use to find the card i want. the problem is that i don't know which name brand to get (ATI, etc.). i also don't know about the agp standards. i don't know what my computer will support by way of agp, agp 4x and agp 8x (or whatever)? i do know my system supports agp as that's the type of card i have right now. if i'm right, will newer agp cards be compatible with older agp slots? are they backward compatible?

    any help with this will be much appreciated. thx.

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Re: video card purchasing help

    Just upgrading the video card on your present system, will not give the same results as running games on the other P4 system you mentioned. You also don't mention how much SYSTEM RAM is on the other system, just the video RAM. More system RAM can make a BIG difference by itself.

    So far as a Video card brand is concerned, There has been a running battle of "one upmanship" between ATI & Nvidia, as to who is the best.
    I am not a big "gamer" but I'm personally running a NVidia GeForce FX 5200, with 128mb video DDR ram. But there are just as many who swear by ATI 9200's.
    BTW, these are both among the more economical cards around, running at $100.00/US or less with some shopping. If your budget is limited, you can get some good buys in the next step down with 64mb video RAM. So let your mouse do the walking around the many outlets and see what you can find.

    AGP standards were once a problem with some MB's. A difference in voltage to the cards meant some cards would burn up if placed in an older AGP slot. NVidia for example, says that any of their cards will work in any agp slot. To be safe, I would check with manufarurer of your MB to insure that there is compatibility with current AGP cards and if it supports 2x.4x, 8x. My guess is that a 3 year old MB would only support 2x. If you plug in a 4x board to a 2x slot, it will run, but only at 2x speed not 4x.

    Bob
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  3. #3
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    Re: video card purchasing help

    <hr>will newer agp cards be compatible with older agp slots? are they backward compatible<hr>
    AGP is AGP, old are new they are the same type of slot. Any AGP Video Card will fit, that is unless you have an AGP Card with a big fan and it's to close to something you have in the PCI slot next to it. He He.
    As for as a good 64MB Card. I use an "ATI 7200 64MB DDR" it has been a very good card for me. And I like to play 3D games.
    I found this one ATI RADEON 7500 AGP 64MB DDR

  4. #4
    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Re: video card purchasing help

    Cowboy,

    ----------------------------------------
    AGP is AGP, old are new they are the same type of slot. Any AGP Video Card will fit
    ---------------------------------------

    Not quite true. Yes, they will FIT in the AGP slot, but some MB's had a 5 volt supply to the card instead of todays 3.3 volt supply. MOST video card makers now have voltage adapters built into the card to make them go either way. Better to be safe than sorry. Check it out before you buy. <img src=/S/yep.gif border=0 alt=yep width=15 height=15>

    Bob
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  5. #5
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    Re: video card purchasing help

    Yeah your right, didn't think of that. But I figured if he was buying a new card it wouldn't be a problem.

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    Re: video card purchasing help

    i guess when it comes down to it, whatever card i get will be better than my (at least) 3 yr old 32MB card that i have now. this is such a pain the butt trying to decide between so many different options. :-)

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    Re: video card purchasing help

    with regards to the radeon's, does it matter if it's a 9200, 9000, 7000, etc.?

    also, check this out and tell me if this is a no-brainer or if i'm just cross eyed. i found a radeon 9200se w/64mb ddr ram for $47. right below it on the same page was a link to a radeon 9200se w/128mb ddr ram. is there a reason i would not want to get the same card with twice the memory for only $3 more?

    better yet, is there a reason why i wouldn't want to get any card that has 128mb ddr ram over a card that has 64? i'm talking with the two chipsets everyone's been telling me to look at (geforce or radeon). for instance, if i find a geforce whatever with 64mb and a radeon whatever with 128 for just a few bucks more, is there a reason i'd want to get the 64mb card? is there a reason it might actually be better or work better?

  8. #8
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    Re: video card purchasing help

    Get the best bang for the buck is my motto. But be careful and make sure your seeing AGP and not PCI.

  9. #9
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    Re: video card purchasing help

    I happen to be a gamer... I'm REALLY into Battlefield 1942. I'm also in a gaming clan (Clan =UniSol=) - we compete with other clans in these games...

    I have an nVidia GForce 4 (TI 4600 - 128 MB) in my year-old gaming system. I've been a faithful nVidia user for years, but I'm looking to ATI for my next card (hopefully in a few months). The ATI 9800 is looking REALLY sweet.

    As a general rule of thumb, the higher the ATI number, the better the card. I'd rather have a 9800 with 128MB than a 9600 with 256MB (if they made one of those??)

    You can check sites like Tom's Hardware Guide for the low-down on this kind of thing....

    Hope this helps!

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