New card in an old system

In an effort to help stave off the urge to buy a new machine for another year or two, I've recently decided to buy a new VC. My system, purchased roughly 4-5 years ago, consists of a P4 2.8ghz, 1 gig RDRAM, and a radeon x800. I just purchased an XFX 7950GT. This leads me to two questions:

1) After a bit more research, I've found Radeon's x1950 XTX to be much better rated, despite having half the memory. Would the increase in performance justify returning my XFX 7950GT the second it arrives, and then buying the x1950 XTX, keeping in mind my aging system?

2) More general in nature, what kind of performance increase can I expect after upgrading from the x800 to the XFX 7950 GT in my old machine? I primarily play Oblivion, Medieval II: Total War, and Company of Heroes at the moment.

Thanks for any help!
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  1. That XTX is going to depend on your power supply and i susspect that on an old system it wont be up to running it.
    If you can post the spec of your psu we can let you know.
    I wouldnt have thought you would be dissapointed at all with the 7950GT it will be a big improvement over the X800.
    I am reading this right in that the 7950 is a 512mb model ? I dont think that you would need or even use that amount of ram.
    If you can run it then great go for the XTX any day but dont be dissapointed if it turns out you cant the 7950 is still a cracking card.
  2. I do believe my PSU is either 400 or 450w. Is there any way I can check for sure?
  3. Unless its a specific brand and make that you can look up on the net the only way and the best bet to make sure you are right is to take the side/back off and have a look there will be a sticker on the side off it the info we are after is the wattage or amps on the +12v rail/s
  4. Alright, it's 400w. What's the minimum I'd need to run the x1950 XTX?
  5. Wait a sec... The x1950xtx is expensive, you are better off with an 8800 or HD2900Pro for that sort of cash. Also, your CPU will hold it back. Don't look at THG's VGA charts, because you won't get the performance jump promised there. Those charts assume a powerful CPU and enough RAM, so the video cards can work at their best.

    I'd return the 7950GT, wait a year, then buy a new PC.

    OK, if you insist on the x1950xtx: ATI calls for a 450W unit with 30 Amps on the 12-Volt rails.
  6. I am guessing your system is AGP and you are refering to the X1950XT not the XTX. The X1950XTX is PCI-e only and has, because of price, not been a good buy compared to the newer, much cheaper, almost identically performing X1950XT model. The X1950XT is the best AGP gaming card out there. I have the PCI-e version of that card. You will need the 30 amp 12v rail(s) as was already mentioned. If you don't have that beefy a power supply, then the 7950GT is a solid performer that uses less power.
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