I have been looking forward to upgrading my system to be more suitable to game online (mainly WoW). If some of you could provide me some advice onto which graphics card to buy it would be appreciated.
With my current System i can get up to 5-40 fps depending on where i am in WoW but usually while raiding im at a constant 5-9 fps and in the outdoors im usually hovering around 19 and in cities where there arent too many people crowding i get up to 40+ and in old world raids/ zones i get upwards of 30 fps.
MY current graphics card is an integrated and sucks with the amount of built in memory it has.
Operating system: Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition (5.1, Build 2600)
System Manufacturer: HP pavilion 061
BIOS: Phoenix - AwardBIOS v6.00PG
Processor: Amd Athlon(tm) XP 3000+, MMX, 3dNow, 2.2GHz
Memory: 1 Gigabyte
DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0c
ADditional Info: My mobo is an AGP 4x so a graphics card compatible with 4x/8x would be nice.
I've worked on a few HP systems upgrading them for WoW. I've always bumped the RAM to 2 GBs and added an AGP graphic card of at least a GeForce 7600GS tier. It gives decent performance at 1440X900 resolution with most settings bottomed out. Depending on which power supply that came with your system, which graphic card you choose you may (most likely will) also have to upgrade the power supply to support the new graphic card. Due to the age of your system you'll be paying a premium for legacy parts like the DDR RAM and the AGP card. Instead of pumping money into an aging system you may be better off using that money for a complete new system using new parts. That said here's a few suggestions about which card may work for you, a chart which shows the relative performance of different cards and a chart which shows the power consumption of the different cards available.
WOW is memory(vga and system) and cpu bound before GPU.
You would be best served getting a whole new system, a single GPU upgrade would give yuo next to no gains in WOW, where as upgradding RAM and CPU would get you a lot, even with onboard video.
Make sure to use WOW at medium or lower settings, low spell detail etc.. It is a very forgiving game with a large gambit of settings.
It would, imo, be a waste to buy a new agp card as most are very infalted in cost.. for the same price as some of the best agp cards you could get a MB+CPU+RAM with onboard video that woudl provide a supperior WOW experience.