Slot A Athlon Rebuild--Advice?

I'm finally taking my Athlon Slot A motherboard / CPU / RAM off the shelf and building a system out of it. Why? Because I want to play Baldurs Gate 1 and 2 with my roommate and he has a Mac. (We can't find the Mac version of Baldur's Gate 1/2 ANYWHERE!)

So the plan is I build a system out of this old hardware and we'll be in multiplayer RPG heaven... But first, I need some parts: graphics card, hard drive, and PSU/Case. My question for you guys is: what is the best graphics card can/should I put in my system? The motherboard is an Asus K7M and supports AGP 2x/4x. Particularly, the cards I've been looking at are the Radeon 7000, Radeon 7000VE, Radeon 9000 Mobile, Geforce2MX400, and Geforce2MX4000 ( Of these, can you make a recommendation?

Also, if you know of any good websites that have old computer parts pass on the information. And I've been keeping an eye on ebay Slot A Athlon offerings. If I'm going through all this effort of building a "new" system, I might as well throw in a faster CPU. So if anyone has a Slot A processor they want to get rid of, let me know.

I want to do this as cheaply as possible; my budget is, say, 150 bucks (for graphics, hard drive, PSU/Case, CPU/RAM upgrades--the whole lot). I think thats easily attainable...

Thats it for now, Thanks.

11 answers Last reply
More about slot athlon rebuild advice
  1. I'd try to find a GF3 Ti500 or Radeon 9700Pro for under $85...
  2. Thats a little more than I awnt to spend. How does the Radeon 9000 mobile compare to the Radeon 7000 and Radeon 8500? I think Geforce2MX is slowest than all those cards, right.

    I'm looking at this Radeon found here
  3. Thanks for the advice.

    How does the Geforce MX4000 compare to the Geforce2 MX400 and MX420? I hate all these weird naming conventions...

  4. Out of those few choices...i'd go with the 7000, its an able card, i have a couple...i don't recommend mixing mobile/desktop parts anywhere.

    If you can try a little harder, search another site for an ATI MADE RADEON 9000. it is an extremely able card for some of its low specs. i've gotten this ittybitty card to play half-life 2 and battlefield 2, no lag, on medium specs, no overclocking (miracle!)

    i own two 7000's, two 9000's, and two GeForce 2's.
    the radeons by far slaughter the GeForce cards, and at lan parties, the radeon machines are first to be taken.
  5. "So if anyone has a Slot A processor they want to get rid of, let me know. "

    There are still Slot A 700 processors on pricewatch for about $15-$20 or less, but the prices go up quickly beyond that speed...
  6. Quote:
    Thanks for the advice.

    How does the Geforce MX4000 compare to the Geforce2 MX400 and MX420? I hate all these weird naming conventions...


    Never heard of Geforce MX4000... if they do exist I doubt they'll be any better than GF2 MX400.

    The only Radeons with acceptable performance is the 8500(performance very close to Ti4200).

    If you can get a 900Mhz or even a 1Ghz off eBay, the best value card with the right performance to go with it would be the GF4 Ti4200/Radeon 8500 depending on price. The GF3 Ti500 would be fine too, but people don't sell it for a good price or don't sell it at all.

    They definetly do exist. I use one. It's ok for my Athlon XP 1800+.
    Nvidia GF4 MX-4000 is the full name

    edit: I'm also running AGP 4x/2x/1x
  7. don't discard socket A so easily - as mentioned in another post, I could play Doom3 in 800*600/low with a 1GHz Duron + ti4200. The ti4x00 is a good series - as is the Ati 9x00, you can throw pretty much any game at it, provided you have a GHz system, even a low-end one. The AGP 8X version of the ti4200 allows high o/c, and stable performances (ran mine close to 4600 clock settings, with its flimsy original cooling). If you're lucky, you may also find an original Ati 9500, which you can unlock to 9700 performance levels.

    Remember that early Athlon 600-700 could be heavily overclocked provided enough cooling (a pal of mine once air-cooled a 600 MHz Athlon up to 1.2GHz, and ran it as a ftp server for months).
  8. So this is what I'm thinking so far:
    GF4 Ti4200 20.00 on ebay here
    Slot A 800Mhz + 128Megs Ram 25.00 on ebay here
    15 - 20.00 case; 25.00 - 35.00 psu; 40.00 hard drive

    thats well inside my 150.00 budget and leaves me with an 800mhz pretty-capable machine.

    One question--will the AGP 8x GF4Ti4200 work in my AGP 1x/2x ASUS K7M mobo?

    Also, can you guys make some recommendations as to where to shop? I'm gonna check out all the clearence sections of the best online stores for the case/psu and harddrive...

  9. Well, I've done a little research. Here are my findings:

    My motherboard is an AGP2.0 spec meaning that it runs at 1.5V.

    The Geforce 4ti4200 is AGP3.0 becuase it is an 8x card:
    AGP 3.0 is keyed like a 1.5V AGP 2.0 slot, but it only uses 0.8V of power. It supports 8X, 4X, 2X and 1X speeds."

    Apparently if the card itself can run at 1.5V, I can put it in any speed AGP slot. The incompatibities arise from the various voltages of the AGP specifications (3.3, 1.5, .8), not the speed.

    The good news is that almost all 4x AGP cards support 1.5V. For convenience here is a rough list of graphic card types that are almost always compatible.

    * Geforce2, Geforce2 MX, Geforce2 MX200/MX400
    * Geforce2 ultra/Pro/GTS/Ti
    * Geforce3/Ti200/Ti500
    * Geforce4-ALL
    * ATI Radeon DDR
    * ATI Radeon 7000/7200/7500/8500/8500LE/9000/9500/9700

    So, the question is...does that card support 1.5v?

    AGP 3.0 also defines an 0.8-volt signaling voltage. Luckily, the AGP 3.0 specification allows for AGP 3.0 video cards to use standard 1.5-volt AGP slots. Of course, you’ll still need a motherboard with AGP 3.0 compliant AGP slots to take advantage of the extra power of this new specification.

    Should work right?


  10. Radeon 8500 to radeon 9250 are about that same. They added features and got slower!
    They were better than what nVidia had at the time. I have a 9200 in a box in storage.
  11. If it is AGP 2.0 (meaning it can bear 1X, 2X, 4X AGP), then an AGP 3.0 card shoud work. However, if it's an AGP 2X (old AMD 750 chipset, early Via chipsets...?) mobo, you'll fry your video card.

    On an AGP 2.0 motherboard, I ran an AGP 1.0 card (Asus V3400TNT) and an AGP 3.0 card (MSI AGP ti4200 8x), no problem.
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