Which graphics card should I get for my rig to turn it into a decent gaming machine?

I recently received a "business class" computer through Ebay. The specs are as follows:
i5-3550 @ 3.3GHz
8GB RAM
1TB hard drive (although it's shown as two drives, a 698GB and a 298GB)

As I'm unsure if the PSU can take anything that doesn't only get its power from the motherboard I'm pretty limited, as I'd rather not change the PSU. My main choices are the new 1050 and the 1050 Ti. (I will be playing in 900p, by the way)
15 answers Last reply
More about graphics card rig turn decent gaming machine
  1. first you need to check if your mainboard can deliver 75W on the PCIe slot
  2. How possible is it that it won't?
  3. If it's a proprietary design motherboard, which pre-built computers sometimes have, it might be an issue. Since you have the computer it should be possible for you to either download the documentation on that model and see what it says about upgrades, or take a look at the motherboard and see what model it is. They you can search for info on that and find out what kind of pci-ex slot it has. Or you can download and run Speccy and see what it says about your motherboard.
  4. dontlistentome said:
    If it's a proprietary design motherboard, which pre-built computers sometimes have, it might be an issue. Since you have the computer it should be possible for you to either download the documentation on that model and see what it says about upgrades, or take a look at the motherboard and see what model it is. They you can search for info on that and find out what kind of pci-ex slot it has. Or you can download and run Speccy and see what it says about your motherboard.

    It's a Dell Optiplex 9010 MT - and yes, I've read up, and a few sources say it has PCIe 3.0 x16, which the 1050 Ti is.
  5. mason-the-deathbat said:
    dontlistentome said:
    If it's a proprietary design motherboard, which pre-built computers sometimes have, it might be an issue. Since you have the computer it should be possible for you to either download the documentation on that model and see what it says about upgrades, or take a look at the motherboard and see what model it is. They you can search for info on that and find out what kind of pci-ex slot it has. Or you can download and run Speccy and see what it says about your motherboard.

    It's a Dell Optiplex 9010 MT - and yes, I've read up, and a few sources say it has PCIe 3.0 x16, which the 1050 Ti is.


    problem is the psu it has is 275 Watt
  6. maxalge said:
    mason-the-deathbat said:
    dontlistentome said:
    If it's a proprietary design motherboard, which pre-built computers sometimes have, it might be an issue. Since you have the computer it should be possible for you to either download the documentation on that model and see what it says about upgrades, or take a look at the motherboard and see what model it is. They you can search for info on that and find out what kind of pci-ex slot it has. Or you can download and run Speccy and see what it says about your motherboard.

    It's a Dell Optiplex 9010 MT - and yes, I've read up, and a few sources say it has PCIe 3.0 x16, which the 1050 Ti is.


    problem is the psu it has is 275 Watt




    For most video cards, that is a problem. However through looking at the benchmarks, the average system the 1050 Ti would be put in draws under 170W at load, so 275 allows enough headroom.
  7. mason-the-deathbat said:
    maxalge said:
    mason-the-deathbat said:
    dontlistentome said:
    If it's a proprietary design motherboard, which pre-built computers sometimes have, it might be an issue. Since you have the computer it should be possible for you to either download the documentation on that model and see what it says about upgrades, or take a look at the motherboard and see what model it is. They you can search for info on that and find out what kind of pci-ex slot it has. Or you can download and run Speccy and see what it says about your motherboard.

    It's a Dell Optiplex 9010 MT - and yes, I've read up, and a few sources say it has PCIe 3.0 x16, which the 1050 Ti is.


    problem is the psu it has is 275 Watt




    For most video cards, that is a problem. However through looking at the benchmarks, the average system the 1050 Ti would be put in draws under 170W at load, so 275 allows enough headroom.


    you are assuming it can actually deliver what it claims
  8. So you think it won't even pull 170W?
  9. mason-the-deathbat said:
    So you think it won't even pull 170W?


    open the case and look at it's specs, or post a pic


    not all psu's are created equal
  10. maxalge said:
    mason-the-deathbat said:
    So you think it won't even pull 170W?


    open the case and look at it's specs, or post a pic


    not all psu's are created equal


    Okay, I looked at the PSU. It's rated for a max output of 275W, and the manufacturing date of the PC is around September 2012. I know for sure it won't be able to pull 275 because hardware degradation is something I can't ignore, but I kind of doubt that around four years would degrade to the point where 170-180W isn't even attainable.

    I could change it out for this - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16817151086 because that's the recommended wattage for the card. However, if I wanted to change out the PSU just to turn this into a gaming rig, I'd get a higher end card to go with it, i.e: RX 470, GTX 1060 6GB.
  11. Also, I've settled on the model - GTX 1050 Ti, but I have three versions in mind.

    Zotac Mini - not factory overclocked at all.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1N850Y5616&cm_re=gtx_1050_ti-_-14-500-411-_-Product
    MSI OC - Core and Boost Clock up 38 MHz
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814137056&cm_re=gtx_1050_ti-_-14-137-056-_-Product
    EVGA SC - Clocks around the level of the non-Ti 1050 at stock
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814487291&cm_re=gtx_1050_ti-_-14-487-291-_-Product

    Should I pay the $10 premium for a 1050 Ti (the EVGA SC) that's clocked around the same level as the 1050, or is the difference in speed too negligible to be worth it?
  12. mason-the-deathbat said:
    Also, I've settled on the model - GTX 1050 Ti, but I have three versions in mind.

    Zotac Mini - not factory overclocked at all.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1N8...
    MSI OC - Core and Boost Clock up 38 MHz
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    EVGA SC - Clocks around the level of the non-Ti 1050 at stock
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    Should I pay the $10 premium for a 1050 Ti (the EVGA SC) that's clocked around the same level as the 1050, or is the difference in speed too negligible to be worth it?


    I would go with either the MSI model you linked or the EVGA SC model. Both will be great performers. Go MSI if you want a quiet card and go with EVGA if you want the best warranty/support. Zotac isn't bad but the others would be preferable.
  13. heebobo5 said:
    mason-the-deathbat said:
    Also, I've settled on the model - GTX 1050 Ti, but I have three versions in mind.

    Zotac Mini - not factory overclocked at all.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1N8...
    MSI OC - Core and Boost Clock up 38 MHz
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    EVGA SC - Clocks around the level of the non-Ti 1050 at stock
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    Should I pay the $10 premium for a 1050 Ti (the EVGA SC) that's clocked around the same level as the 1050, or is the difference in speed too negligible to be worth it?


    I would go with either the MSI model you linked or the EVGA SC model. Both will be great performers. Go MSI if you want a quiet card and go with EVGA if you want the best warranty/support. Zotac isn't bad but the others would be preferable.


    I'm leaning towards one of those two myself, personally. There's about a 13MHz clock difference and a $10 price difference between them, so I would be happy to pick either.
  14. mason-the-deathbat said:
    heebobo5 said:
    mason-the-deathbat said:
    Also, I've settled on the model - GTX 1050 Ti, but I have three versions in mind.

    Zotac Mini - not factory overclocked at all.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1N8...
    MSI OC - Core and Boost Clock up 38 MHz
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    EVGA SC - Clocks around the level of the non-Ti 1050 at stock
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    Should I pay the $10 premium for a 1050 Ti (the EVGA SC) that's clocked around the same level as the 1050, or is the difference in speed too negligible to be worth it?


    I would go with either the MSI model you linked or the EVGA SC model. Both will be great performers. Go MSI if you want a quiet card and go with EVGA if you want the best warranty/support. Zotac isn't bad but the others would be preferable.


    I'm leaning towards one of those two myself, personally. There's about a 13MHz clock difference and a $10 price difference between them, so I would be happy to pick either.


    The clock difference won't matter. You can just OC it yourself. Up to you though. Pick the card you like most.
  15. heebobo5 said:
    mason-the-deathbat said:
    heebobo5 said:
    mason-the-deathbat said:
    Also, I've settled on the model - GTX 1050 Ti, but I have three versions in mind.

    Zotac Mini - not factory overclocked at all.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1N8...
    MSI OC - Core and Boost Clock up 38 MHz
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    EVGA SC - Clocks around the level of the non-Ti 1050 at stock
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    Should I pay the $10 premium for a 1050 Ti (the EVGA SC) that's clocked around the same level as the 1050, or is the difference in speed too negligible to be worth it?


    I would go with either the MSI model you linked or the EVGA SC model. Both will be great performers. Go MSI if you want a quiet card and go with EVGA if you want the best warranty/support. Zotac isn't bad but the others would be preferable.


    I'm leaning towards one of those two myself, personally. There's about a 13MHz clock difference and a $10 price difference between them, so I would be happy to pick either.


    The clock difference won't matter. You can just OC it yourself. Up to you though. Pick the card you like most.


    Both are factory-OC, and whatever's closest to the 1050's stock speed is fine, because it provides fair competition
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