Should I upgrade my Intel GMA X3000 ?

Hello Forum members :)

I bought a Gateway GM 5420 (Specs-----> ) like a couple of weeks ago, and it has an Intel GMA X3000 *intergrated graphics card..... According to the Windows Vista performance scores.. It rates around 3.6 for gaming /graphics.. No more than 3.7 (I think)....

My question is the following: Should I even bother getting a dedicated GPU from Nvidia or Ati for my desktop, noting that this pc will be used for mainly video playback?.... My brother has his Unreal Tournament on there and it plays a bit choppy at times for intergrated graphics (it is quite impressive it can even play it - I think it is around 30 to 40fps -but i really dont know..... sometimes it gets a bit choppy... His Geforce 6200 AGP on a Emachines Athlon 2800xp single core with 1 GB of RAM plays better than this LOL :roll: )

So , if I need a dedicated graphics card- which one should i splurge $$$ on? Ati or Nvidia? I have a budget of around 150 to 200 bucks... Should i wait on Direct X 10 compatible hardware? Will that help video playback at all? (compared to current DX 9 hardware) Please do recommend some models.... I'm willing to wait around 2months more (no more)...

Thank you all :D

Neophyte Eddio

P.S. The current video playback on the GMA X3000 is good.. but the colors are a bit wierd on the skin tones sometimes.. ( i also have the latest driver from intel)... I have to use VLC and configure it with open gl output and post processing @ it's highest to get pretty good video... It is, most of the time , pretty smooth, but sometimes video suffers from blocky artifacts - I think my Mobility Radeon X1400 has - marginally - better video- it rates a maximum of 3.4 on vista gaming index..... Go figure :roll:
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  1. Well for video playback the GMA X3000 is supposed to be good with the latest drivers, but it's still awaiting it's big update for the drivers for improved video playback. IMO wait for that update first, then see what you think.

    If you still feel you need another card check back here, things will be very different then with likely the release of the GF8600 and 8300, and the X2600 and 2300 desktop products.

    If you feel you need something right now, then look to the GF7600GT or X1650Pro as good compromises for price/performance, where video playback will be rock solid, and you will be able to do mild gaming for your bro if need be.
  2. Hey GreatApe good advice :arrow: , but on a side note whats with the sig , about the stamp and buying a gun comparison :?
  3. It's a quote from RedGreen.

    To put it into context for you think along the lines;

    1- Opinions are like A-holes.....
    2- You need a license to get married, but not to breed...
    3- There are no st00pid questions, just alot of inquisitive idiots...
    5- If the pen is mightier than the sword, why do you only need a license for the sword?
    6- What ever happened to #4?

    It's just a quote I feel matches the .net pretty well.
  4. Don't forget to add the cost of a quality PSU if you plan on a DX10 card, the OEM PSU in your Gateway will more than likely choke on an 8800.
  5. X3000 :arrow: r600 8O :D :lol:
  6. i'd wait, good things come with time and patience
  7. WoW - Just wanted to thank you all that posted back to my post .... Ya, the video is good- but i just want the best 8O hehe....I can also add, that it did play WMV HD trailers from quite fluidly..... So, yes, it really isn't that bad for video.... Just thought my 1yr old Mobility Radeon X1400 plays back it's video marginally better :o

    About the particular video that had some (@times.... ) wierd skin tone and a bit of blocky artifacts ----> It was Hilary Duff's New video - With Love .... I mean, i think really, that it is just me being picky @ times with what i see.... So ya, it most likey does a fine job ( X3000) playing back video.... It is just it's picky owner (anal ? :mrgreen: ) ....

    If you would like to know how I got the video playing / test what i was saying on the skin tones/ video playback(on my HDTV - 40'' Samsung), please feel free to contact me @ my msn messenger address: - I'll hook you up with lyfox - A little program that gets music videos ( 700kbps WMV 9 quality) from yahoo for FREE ..... It was practically Video Lan Player with open gl output (direct x didnt work well at all 8O ) - and video post processing @ it's highest - with the video STRETCHED out to fill the hd tv screen .....)

    I think the source video- A WMV 9 @ 700kbps (around that bitrate) - that may have contributed to the 'imperfections' i saw....

    BUT HD WMV Video (at around 3MB sec) was pretty awesome.... Not perfect, but pretty darn good....

    Thank you all for your posts!

    p.s.I'm probably going to wait and buy a graphics card in 2months.... I'm leaning toward an ATI ( I have a X1400 Radeon on my lappy- I love the color controls on it :O ) unless some one can convince me other wise :lol: ....
  8. Beer and Candy- I'm using the latest driver- which i believe is 15.2 ... Yup...

    feel free to contact me by emailing me or Instant messaging me @ :


  9. The GMA3000s are...

    [distracted by the thought of beer and candy...]
  10. you probably dont need another gfx card, the integrated should be fine for video playback and mild gaming
  11. I had a similar question. I have a low profile box that is tight on power. I'm looking to see if it's worth adding a GPU. The nvidia 7300GS only runs 16W at peak but it's slow and the ATI X1600PRO is said to hit 41W. I would love to be able to compare these two to the Intel GMA X3000, which is suppose to support DirectX 10. (someone poke the video guys at Toms).

    Any idea when the new drivers are set to hit the street for WinXP?
  12. Sorry, Toms Hardware stopped doing useful articles a couple months ago. You should read about SLR cameras and bizarre cars instead. :x
  13. I'm not one to say how great integrated graphics are, but that GMA X3000 is supposed to be a step up from what Intel has made in the past... and you don't seem to have unrealistic expectations for it. You just want to be able to play some older (not bleeding edge) games at a decent pace...

    Does anyone else here think that might just be a Vista issue holding the OP back?
  14. You need to know that even a pci (not a pci express) dedicated graphic card work alot better than the lastest integrated chip. This is manly because the chip is made to generate graphics(not to run normal applications)

    the second point is that 3rd party driver (nvidia/ati) work alot better on game than the intel integrated driver.

    Games are also optimized to work with these 3rd party driver because more and more people have dedicated graphics.

    If your a small gamer just dont pay 300 500$ for graphics

    And DX10 graphic card are not worthy right now , just wait for the second generation of dx10 they will be alot faster

    But i know that we cant always wait :roll:

    I sugges you start by defining what type of gaming you want to do before buying anything.

    Ive played 5years in semi-pro gaming with a pci 2x graphic card until last year(i stopped)

    so think about that before going for pricy cards that will be of no use.

    Not tha ti dont like windows vista but i think its not ready for NORMAL daily use. Windows xp is still the best os for games.

    Remember that having fps highter than 30 fps dosnt change anything... its physical, the eye see the same thing a 30 and a 120000fps

    but 60fps is the best since it isnt consant , you will never drop under 30

    Need more help ? email me
  15. x3000 is awesome for video playback and SOME games. Some of the more intensive games, Dx9 and above, don't perform well on the x3000 at certain resolutions because it can't get the mandatory 30 fps it needs to have fluid gameplay. I would suggest banging out a Nvidia 7600GT of some sort. Awesome card and the prices are right. I don't think there is a game out today that this card can't handle. Otherwise, for gaming your better bet would be buy a PS3 and enjoy yourself.
  16. PS3??

  17. Quote:


    Add Ewwwww there.
  18. I agree with you that the nvidia 7600GT is worth it right now (I picked up an EVGA brand one for 100 bucks). It's what I use in my 'gaming' machine. I don't have the power in my slim form factor 'office' pc for the power the 7600GT would require plus it's hard to find low profile 7600GTs (leadtec comes to mind).

    That being said there are low power option for the low profile. My big question is; is the Intel GMA X3000 going to get much better with the next driver release? As far as I can tell the current version is 14.27 released on 3/2/2007.

    Can anyone speak to how stable this version is and how much the next might improve, if at all?
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