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Wanting to upgrade my video Card

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 16, 2009 4:46:31 AM

I have a dimension 8400
pcie x16 with 350 w power supply.

I was looking at the HD 4850. Is this compatible? If not, do you have any suggestions?
May 16, 2009 5:37:35 AM

What are the rest of your system specifications? If I remember right the 8400 has a Pentium 4 CPU correct?
a c 147 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
May 16, 2009 5:46:53 AM

Your power supply is not adequate.

Also, your CPU is not powerful enough for the graphics card so it would be a waste to buy this card. Your best value is the HD4770.

I don't know how much RAM you get. If you have 1GB I'd add more (4GB for 64bit or 3GB for 32bit). If you only have 2 slots get 2x2GB.

If you get the HD4770 you just might sneak by with that PSU but I don't recommend it. It's not just the wattage but the quality and the proper current. Not only that I'd be surprised if your PSU even had the proper connector(S) for a good PCIe card.

You could probably get by nicely with this PSU:
http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=29136&vpn=RS...

Verify it fits, etc.

Most prebuilt systems have PSU's that are just good enough and not meant for expansion, especially after a few years.
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a b U Graphics card
a c 243 ) Power supply
May 16, 2009 11:22:55 AM

photonboy said:
Your power supply is not adequate.

If you get the HD4770 you just might sneak by with that PSU but I don't recommend it. It's not just the wattage but the quality and the proper current. Not only that I'd be surprised if your PSU even had the proper connector(S) for a good PCIe card.


Not adequate for a 110 watt ATI 4850, no problem with a 70 watt ATI 4770.
Delta built, 350 watts / 28 amp combined 12v ouput, and a 6 pin pcie cable.
May 16, 2009 6:06:12 PM

^ Would the 4770 be bottlenecked assuming the CPU is the stock P4?
a b U Graphics card
May 16, 2009 6:08:25 PM

AKM880 said:
^ Would the 4770 be bottlenecked assuming the CPU is the stock P4?


Majorly
a c 147 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
May 20, 2009 5:03:48 AM

I'd still get the HD4770.
Yes, it will be bottlenecked at times (probably most games) but it's reasonably priced, low power (new 40nm transistors) and will definitely ensure you get the max a system with that CPU can handle.

With XP you should have at least 1GB of RAM. I recommend 3GB max. (i.e. 2x512MB + 2x2GB). You can use 4GB though you will only be able to use roughly 3GB.
a b U Graphics card
May 20, 2009 9:08:50 PM

photonboy said:
I'd still get the HD4770.
Yes, it will be bottlenecked at times (probably most games) but it's reasonably priced, low power (new 40nm transistors) and will definitely ensure you get the max a system with that CPU can handle.

With XP you should have at least 1GB of RAM. I recommend 3GB max. (i.e. 2x512MB + 2x2GB). You can use 4GB though you will only be able to use roughly 3GB.


And why should he spend $100 on a card that he can't even use to its full potential when he can spend $52 on a card that he still can't use to its full potential?
May 20, 2009 9:58:04 PM

edeawillrule said:
And why should he spend $100 on a card that he can't even use to its full potential when he can spend $52 on a card that he still can't use to its full potential?


Lol, I agree. It's not a smart investment to go for the 4770 when you won't be taking full advantage of it until you upgrade your cpu. When that time does come when you do upgrade the cpu, the video card prices will have lowered as well, maybe you can get a 4770 for $50 then, who knows?
a c 147 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
May 26, 2009 4:00:26 AM

Rebuttle:
There are other reasons than raw gaming performance to buy a video card. The HD4770 offers full hardware decoding which now includes MPEG2 on top of the previous AVC and VC-1.

There's also video transcoding though I'm not sure that it is yet progressed to be that useful. Certainly not as useful as the hardware decoding. Considering some Bluray discs have MPEG2 this card may be of interest to those with older CPU's who would not otherwise be able to decode such Bluray discs. I saw a Sony Bluray reader for $100 USD.

It would be interesting to see exactly which card maxes out his CPU in ALL GAMES. It is difficult to get data on this.

I'm not arguing that a $60 might be a "better" way to go though.

(speaking of video transcoding, thanks for nothing ATI.. I bought the HD3870 which finally offers basically useless transcoding which is still using the CPU only anyway. I bought the HD3870 for the low idle noise which is a plus and do think the HD4770 is a beautiful card all around. Barring physics support though, I'm going back to NVidia with a DX11 40nm card)
a c 147 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
May 26, 2009 4:07:52 AM

MPEG2, AVC and VC-1 hardware decoding:

I should add that you can offload Bluray "rips" and other video in SD or HD with these hardware codecs to your graphics board (if supported).

I use the latest K-Lite codec pack and the included WMPC-HC media player (DXVA). Here's an example:

System: HD3870, X2-4800+
Movie: BD-rip of Hellboy 2 @ 1080p
CPU usage (CPU only): 55% in Windows XP, 65% Vista/Win7
CPU usage (DXVA on HD3870): 3% in Windows XP, 13% in Vista/Win7

With a Bluray movie the copyright protection takes a fair amount (not sure how much) to decode but even an Atom CPU with a newer graphics card can do it (i.e. "ION").

The CPU for this post would NOT be able to play a BluRay with MPEG2 unless he had a graphics card with MPEG2 hardware acceleration like the HD4770.

(I'm not sure about all media players but I noticed that WMPC-HC uses the desktop resolution. If you have your monitor set to 1024x768 but can go higher, either change to your monitors maximum resolution temporarily to watch the movie, or better yet ALWAYS use the max resolution and increase your DPI until satisfied. Note, there is no perfect solution; Windows 7 and Vista scale much better than XP but some programs still do not scale well. I'm using 1600x1200 and 150dpi. Future OLED monitors are expected to reach 3840x2160 (4x1080p); we should see these in 2012.)

Sorry to digress...
May 26, 2009 6:37:09 AM

The HD4670 can decode HD and Blu-ray just fine, my HD 3650 can deocde MPEG-2, HD-DVD, Blu-ray, H.264, VC-1. With my 2.4GHz P4 I can play a 1080p encoded movie with only CPU usage around 30-35%. Mostly all the HD2000/HD3000 ATI series of cards and up can do DXVA hardware acceleration. The only card that doesn't is the 2900XT.

I use a brilliant peice of software called MPC-HC (Media Player Classic - Home Cinema) it has its own DXVA support, you do not need (or want) another codec pack to interfere with the deocding of the HD/SD videos. I don't think that MPC-HC always has to use the current screen resolution to play HD files. My HD 3650 can even decode .MOV HD files (Apple trailers).

There is a tutorial on the web on how to use Nvidia and ATI cards for DXVA acceleration, the author has a smart piece of software that can check the DXVA capabilities of your card. He/she has also listed test files (SD,720p,1080p respectively) in HD that you can use for CPU and GPU testing. Here is the link
nunnally.ahmygoddess.net/watching-h264-videos-using-dxva/
It doesn't only accelerate H.264 and VC-1, .MOV and MPEG2 works too ;) 

Theres also PowerDVD 8/9 that has nicer ATI AVIVO decoding support, I haven't tested this though, as I can currently still using MPC-HC for my videos. Good luck freedom07!
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