sometimes I use my computer for business applications which require nothing more than on-board graphics.
Other times I want to use my relatively expensive graphics card ($250) for gaming.
Does anyone know if there's a way to essentially "power off" the expensive card and revert to the inexpensive card without powering down and physically changing out the cards?
Wouldn't powering down the expensive card save money and preserve the life of the expensive card?
Normally, if there is no Direct3D or OpenGL application running (in other words, anything using the graphics card for 3D) the card effectively DOES shut down; this is noticable if you check the temperature of the card; when just using the Internet or one of them "productivity" programs, the card is running a lot cooler, as it simple ceases to use most of the GPU. It's not until you start up a game that it really revs to life.
However, to do what you want to, I'm fairly certain that it is possible, though with only one monitor, it could be a little tricky; there are some adapters that allow you to plug one monitor into two display ports, with a switch to go between them; hence, you'd plug one port into your major video card, and the other into the motherboard's integrated video port. I'm not sure, though, if it would be possible to actually shut off the card entirely, though. But for the above reason mentioned in the previous paragraph, this solution is pretty much pointless. Because of the way it works, an expensive graphics card should still comfortably last for some 10 years or more, easily long enough for the stingiest of us.
Besides in about couple of years or sooner that card will be way out dated. Opsolete. :twisted: If you want to play the modern games of course. This november my card will be 4 yrs old. And it's opsolete. But it still works fine, but I can't play any modern games at good resolution. Some game I probably can't play at all. :twisted:
why woudl u want to power down? such as
if i "power downed" my 7800gtx to perform like a 6800 gt
then in the future 1 year from now
the 7800gtx will be wehre the 6800gt is at right now
why not use the full $500 GPU that you paid for right?
Good for you man. I think it would be fun and interesting to see if you can run the card cooler etc etc. What kind of card do you have? There are many programs out there that will let you down clock the CPU and RAM. I dont know if it is automatic, on-the-fly or what but I used this program called powerstip (I think). It let me cool down my 9800 Pro A LITTLE. and I could only tell by touch but that was good enough for me. Doesnt matter though, cuz I installed one of those dual slot arctic cooling things for it. I blocked the heat vent on it and now that card has artifact issues on certain games. What a loss. Let us know what kind of card you have and I am sure there is someone here that can give you first hand knowledge of what to expect.
Thanks again for all the info. The biggest problem I've had was that the cooling fans on the video card would fail. Then the card would overheat....sometimes ruining it.
It just "seemed" like a kewl idea to be able to completely turn off an expensive graphics card and have the computer revert to something low end like on-board graphics or a cheap video card when using the computer for something that requires almost no graphics power like spreadsheets or writing letters etc.
sort of like those high performance cars where you can switch the horsepower down depending on whos gonna drive it..... like a valet parking situation.
I have pets and pet hair tends to work it's way into the fans eventually.