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Graphics card recommendations for AGP 4x mobo

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 1, 2007 8:04:20 PM

Hey all. I've got an ASUS motherboard (A7-266NM or something similar) that has a built in graphics processor and I'm thinking about adding a new graphics board to the open AGP 4x slot. I've got a Athalon XP 1.7Ghz processor (I believe).

I tried to run WoW last night, and it didn't work. So, I ordered another stick of RAM (will go to 1GB from 512 (64 is allocated for graphics processing)).

I don't really want to spend too much on a graphics board because I'll probably be upgrading the whole machine in the next year or so. I'm basically just looking to spend $60 or so for nice bump in graphics capabilities. Also, I don't think I'll get the full advantage of the newer 8x boards because my motherboard only supports 4x.

So, I'm looking for recommendations on what to go with. Used on E-bay is fine by me :D 


Thanks for any advice,
-Mike
January 1, 2007 8:09:59 PM

Are you looking to buy new or used?

Ebay can be risky tbh but you'll find some very good prices.

What amps and watts are on your power supply?
January 1, 2007 8:18:33 PM

For new retail here is a FX5500 at the Egg for $55: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Should be sufficient.

On Ebay though for around the same price you can get 6600's or maybe even a GT which will kill the 5500.

BTW, what kind of integrated graphics do you have? for kicks and giggles.
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January 1, 2007 8:19:58 PM

I'm probably looking used. Whichever gets me the best bang for the buck...

I'm not sure on the power supply. I'm planning on checking it tonight. I didn't see any labels on the outside of it with a quick glance this morning. Is there a way I can check it in Windows? I'd rather not have to pull it out...

Why is buying hardware on E-bay any more risky than buying other stuff?


Thanks again,
-Mike
January 1, 2007 8:29:20 PM

I just searched the completed items on Ebay and saw prices in the range of 60-100 for a 6600/6600GT. You want the GT if possible. My friend is running the GT on a Dell 250 watt fine.

You are going to have to pop the case open. Check the sticker on the actual power supply. Report watts & amps.

Ebay can be a little risky because of shipping damages, and you never know if the seller overclocked the gpu, etc. I've considered buying a card on Ebay but first I always ask the seller lots of questions (if he doesn't respond then forget him), plus seller needs good feedback.

I think you'll be fine on the psu but thats a risk you have to take if you don't want to open the case. The plain 6600 and even some GT's don't need the extra power connector from the psu.
January 1, 2007 11:19:53 PM

Ok, it looks like I've got a 300W power supply. Here's a link to an item on E-bay that looks pretty much the same (mine is an Eagle, not a deer...) that lists the amps.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Deer-DR-A300ATX-Power-Supply_W0QQit...

I originally got the idea of a new video card because a guy at work was selling a 9800Pro for like $40. He said that it was 4-6x more powerful that the GeForce 4xxx and 5xxx series. So, I figured I'd do some research before buying anything. But, I don't really want to spend a whole lot of money, unless the performance is a lot better.

The motherboard shares 32 Megs (not 64 like I originally posted) and looks like it's a Nvidia GeForce 2.

I read on another board that the x800 was a good choice...
January 2, 2007 2:25:35 AM

PSU is okay for an okay card.

Now about that 4-6 times performance of the 4 & 5 Nvidia series. Very vague statement, which is true if he is comparing it to the lower end cards. However, I wouldn't give $40 for it, given you can spend just a little extra and get much much better performance.

Yes, if you want to go ATI then the x800 series will serve you well. Many different variants out there, just make sure you don't get anything requiring extra power. XL, Pro, GT, SE, GTO, vanilla, are all variants just differing between clocks & pipes which thus affects pricing and performance. Ebay has some good offerings. Either way, all these x800's and comparably priced 6600's from Nvidia offer more performance than the 9800 PRO for just a tad bit more money.

Ben
January 2, 2007 5:37:27 AM

I would not trust Deer power supplies. Go with an FSP this one should do nicely to power a 6600GT which has a minimum power requirement of 350W: FSP group.

I couldn't find a minimum amps for the 6600GT but this FSP will most likely supply more than enough.

It is a good brand and it will not let you down and you will have room to OC. Some people don't realize that the PSU is the most important part of the computer and you have to have enough power going to your parts or you will get hard to diagnose problems/instability.

I realize it is $51 but please don't skimp on the PSU.
January 2, 2007 7:53:52 AM

Eagle/Deer both are not the best. But if the original poster could post his amps on his psu we might be able to tell him if he needs a psu upgrade, as one is highly unlikely due to the nature of his system and his budget on the video card.

If the amps aren't high enough then he'll have to drop to a lower performance level, anything is actually better than what he has now.
January 2, 2007 12:47:24 PM

I'll get more info on the amps tonight. I looked at it last night, but there were a lot of numbers on the psu. So, I took a pic of it instead of writing all the stuff done. Turns out the camera focused on something else, and I couldn't really read any of the numbers... :roll:

A psu upgrade might be doable, considering I could use the new psu in the next computer I put together...
January 2, 2007 1:33:56 PM

New: you can get 6600 GTs on newegg for under $100n last time I checked.

Used: X800 XL on ebay, should be under $100 for tons of performance

Cheap used: 9700 PRO or 9800 PRO on ebay, should be under $50. Still does a damn good job and will eat a Geforce FX alive. :) 
a b U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
January 2, 2007 2:33:18 PM

IMO, if you really want the best possible solution, probably a 6600 would suit you well (given the budget). If you really are only playing WoW, then 6600 is plenty enough, though it can't play the latest games such as Company of Heroes, FEAR, etc at the max settings, probably only at low or at best medium settings.

However if you would be able to get an X800, go for it. Though I don't know how limited the performance will be given that you have a 4x slot.
January 2, 2007 3:10:04 PM

Quote:
New: you can get 6600 GTs on newegg for under $100n last time I checked.

Used: X800 XL on ebay, should be under $100 for tons of performance

Cheap used: 9700 PRO or 9800 PRO on ebay, should be under $50. Still does a damn good job and will eat a Geforce FX alive. :) 


Seconded.
January 2, 2007 4:30:55 PM

Does the X800 require a larger psu than I have?
January 3, 2007 6:23:51 PM

Ok, here's the amp info off of my psu. I don't really know what to make of it though...

V-input 115V 8A

V--- +3.3V +5V +12V -5V -12V +5VSB
___ 20A 30A 13A 0.5A 0.8A 2A

MAX 160W Peak 2.5W 9.6W 10W

+5V & +3.3V combined 160W Total output 300W


I think I'd rather stick with a card that didn't require me to upgrade my psu... Preferably around the $50-60 range. So, a used 6600GT? Would my psu run it ok ya think?
January 3, 2007 10:36:07 PM

With 13A on your +12V your pretty much stuck with the card you have unless you upgrade your PSU. I'm not even sure if it is meeting the 9800pro's power requirement!
January 4, 2007 12:42:46 PM

What about the 5900Ultra? I heard that's pretty comparable to the 9800Pro...

Not really looking to spend a whole lot of money. Just trying to get out of the dark ages with my video processor... I figure putting a cheap card in my AGP slot will free up some RAM too ;) 
January 4, 2007 12:54:04 PM

9800 PRO > 5900 Ultra

The Geforce FX series (the ones that start with a '5') are terrible cards. Stay away from them, their performance dies once they use anything with DirectX 9 shaders.
January 4, 2007 1:01:18 PM

Yeah, but it's still gonna be tons better than what I have right now, right?

I'm just looking for the best card I can get that won't require me to upgrade the psu...
January 4, 2007 1:07:23 PM

The 5900 Ultra will use as much power as a 9700 PRO, more I believe.

A 9700 PRO will run on your 300w without trouble, I reckon.
January 4, 2007 1:31:21 PM

The dude who just told you that the Geforce 5xxx series cards will die on directX 9 is only somewhat correct. Initially that series was not directX 9 capable but Nvidia upgraded the series so that it would support DirectX 9. However, those cards always ran hot and chewed up more power than did the ATI's of the day such as the 9800 Pro (which in itself was power hungry). Your best bet would be to get a 6600GT (not plain... get the GT big difference in performance for a little more money). The 6600GT was Nvidia's first card to use the 110nm process which uses less power than the 9800 Pro does believe it or not. If you go higher than this in performance you're probably not going to see the difference because a 6600GT as it is will saturate your AGP4x bus.
Your problem is that with 13A on the 12V rail there is no way....I repeat ....no way you are going to run any of the cards that anyone has spoken of in here with any kind of stability. I have a friend who has a crappy power supply (17A on 12V rail) on his aging Athlon XP system running my old 6600GT and it barely does it and but is not very stable. He is however running three hard drives and two ROM drives also. Point is though.....you are going to have to ditch that power supply. I have built many many K7 systems with decent mid range vid cards and I am telling you that you will not get away with the crappy power supply and in reality you may cause damage to your board by under amping/ under volting your components!

Like you said anyway, you can use the power supply later for a newer build. Just make it a good power supply. It does not have to be a huge 700watt power supply either because after this initial DriectX 10 generation, Nvidia and ATI/AMD have already stated that the power requirements will come back down to a sane level.
Good luck and let us know what happens and how it works out in the mid term
January 4, 2007 1:32:54 PM

I'm not so sure. I ran a while ago a 2200+ XP, 2 x 512mb RAM, 3 hdds (that may be the problem in my case - no pun intended :p  ) and a 9800 Pro. I also had some case fans and case lighting, and you could visibly see the case lighting dim slightly under load. I had a 330w PSU.
January 4, 2007 1:40:56 PM

Quote:
Initially that series was not directX 9 capable but Nvidia upgraded the series so that it would support DirectX 9.


When I say 'die', I don't mean the FX series isn't capable, I mean the FX series will choke and offer terrible performance when DX9 shaders are used...
January 4, 2007 1:41:57 PM

Did it crash or was it unstable though? That's the question...
January 4, 2007 2:00:23 PM

I also have a Mobo with a x4 AGp slot and a 300w PSU. Right now I have a ATI radeon 9200. I will be geting a 400w PSU from my friend soon. I was wondering if the 7300GT would be an option.
January 4, 2007 2:09:41 PM

An AGP 7300 GT would be an option.

I don't think they make a GDDR3 version of the AGP 7300 GTs though... a DDR2 7300 GT is a bit slower than a 6600 GT, which you can also get for under $100... although the 7300 GT DDR2 might take less power.
January 4, 2007 2:52:25 PM

Well, it looks like I'm gonna try and snag a 9700 pro on e-bay. It only requires a 300w psu and it looks like if I'm patient, I could get one for around $30 + shipping...

Thanks all for the replies, and I'll let ya know how I end up :) 


-Mike
January 4, 2007 3:30:52 PM

Quote:
Did it crash or was it unstable though? That's the question...


It did, yes. I'd put the extra 2 hdds in, added 512mb RAM and upgraded from a Ti4200. It would often just freeze or randomly reboot. I confess to blaming this on the 9800 Pro initially, but then when looking to upgrade further to a 2800+ XP I read for the first time about how upgraders should also look at their PSU. I swapped it for some Enermax I think it was - 480w IIRC - and all the problems went away immediately.
January 4, 2007 5:00:46 PM

Might have been a bad PSU though. I've seen a few die in my time, and according to spec they should be able to handle what they were doing.
January 4, 2007 5:04:47 PM

Yep - you could well be right. Either way I think I was lucky to get away without any individual component getting trashed.
January 4, 2007 7:30:05 PM

UM....instability leads to crashing and thats why instability is bad. Yes it crashes....what the hell do you think? As soon as he changed out his junk power supply for a decent one it quit crashing. Someone always trying to "one up" everyone else and trying to sound like the expert...sigh I get tired of it and thats why I don't post here much.
January 4, 2007 8:06:06 PM

Maybe you don't post much because you're hypersensitive to other people's opinions. :) 
January 5, 2007 6:45:36 PM

NO...like I said its because someone like you always thinks they know more than they really do. Like I said.....dummy.
January 5, 2007 6:49:53 PM

lol. I think you just confirmed my hypothesis.

There there, hypersensitive lad! Time for your valium... :D 
January 5, 2007 6:51:10 PM

youre still a dummy
not to mention a loser
and you just confirmed my earlier post too BTW
January 5, 2007 6:53:47 PM

heheh. Did I get you more riled up?

I promise I wasn't trying to. Honest. And I'm not playing you like a violin, either... 8)
January 5, 2007 7:22:16 PM

:lol:  You should probably figure out who you're talking to before you tell them they don't know what their talking about. You might take a gander around the Graphics Card section of the forumz and then come back.
!