Don't know much about graphics card...help me

I don't know much about computers and tech stuff in general, so bear with me b/c some good advice is much needed and appreciated. I recently bought the Sims 3 and it crashes a lot (I save like crazy). I have a Toshiba Satellite A135 and I think the game's graphics is causing other problems on my laptop too. My laptop keeps giving me pop-up messages like "windows blah.. has stopped working" or my browsing are beginning to crash randomly.

SO I'm thinking I should get a new graphics card but I don't which one is the best one, or the right one, or the compatible one or should I buy a new laptop and it's kinda overwhelming. I'm wondering if someone could tell me what's the best approach to finding and buying the proper card that would improve the performance of my laptop. You can be as detailed or "step by step" as you like. Please help.

Thanks
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More about graphics card help
  1. umm, new laptop, generally you can't upgrade the graphics in a laptop (unless your laptop has a mxm slot)
  2. if you want to game like you should be get a desktop. laptop cards aren't that great
  3. My brother has the laptop. I think it comes with Intel integrated graphics and 1GB of memory standard
    check to see if that's what you have. If so, your only real option is to add more ram. It should help stabilize Sims but it wont help much in the game playing faster.
  4. +1 for desktop. Changing out the gpu of a laptop is almost unheard of, mainly because in most cases you have to also replace the motherboard, and the cost of that is about the same as the cost of a new laptop.

    If you desperately need a laptop you can find good gaming laptops but they will cost a boatload (possibly over $1500).

    On the other hand you can build yourself an even better desktop for around $700.
  5. Here's a good one if you want to go the laptop route :)

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834152103


    But, like I said, you could probably build a $500 desktop with identical performance.
  6. litex said:
    +1 for desktop. Changing out the gpu of a laptop is almost unheard of, mainly because in most cases you have to also replace the motherboard, and the cost of that is about the same as the cost of a new laptop.

    If you desperately need a laptop you can find good gaming laptops but they will cost a boatload (possibly over $1500).

    On the other hand you can build yourself an even better desktop for around $700.

    I was going to suggest this laptop, as it's surprisingly powerful at it's price point. MSI has had a history of releasing shoddy products, but the reviews so-far look promising.

    A couple of things to note:
    It has a screen resolution of 1366 x 768, which is an issue if your into watching 1080p videos on your laptop.
    The warranty sticker is placed on a gap by one of the screw mounts and therefor prone to break. I own the MSI GX630, which has a similar problem, and there is a very good chance that MSI will not honor the warranty under the pretense that you've "tampered" with the laptop.
    Also, the keyboard is unique as the keys are jammed close together to accommodate a full numeric pad. You'll get used to it over time, but when you switch back to a full sized keyboard, it'll feel weird under your hands.

    If you game ONLY at home, I suggest you look into building a PC and use your existing laptop for office/work use. For roughly $700 or less, you could build a very capable desktop that would be far superior to the suggested laptop.
  7. The only way to change your graphics card on that laptop is if it has something like an MXM slot, or to swap out the motherboard with a model that has a dedicated GPU on it. Often manufacturers use the same casing and other internals for a number of notebooks both with and without dedicated graphics. Of course that's a real pain, and you have the get the correct complementing cooler of course.
  8. g3force said:
    I was going to suggest this laptop, as it's surprisingly powerful at it's price point. MSI has had a history of releasing shoddy products, but the reviews so-far look promising.

    A couple of things to note:
    It has a screen resolution of 1366 x 768, which is an issue if your into watching 1080p videos on your laptop.
    The warranty sticker is placed on a gap by one of the screw mounts and therefor prone to break. I own the MSI GX630, which has a similar problem, and there is a very good chance that MSI will not honor the warranty under the pretense that you've "tampered" with the laptop.
    Also, the keyboard is unique as the keys are jammed close together to accommodate a full numeric pad. You'll get used to it over time, but when you switch back to a full sized keyboard, it'll feel weird under your hands.

    If you game ONLY at home, I suggest you look into building a PC and use your existing laptop for office/work use. For roughly $700 or less, you could build a very capable desktop that would be far superior to the suggested laptop.


    Oh ok so I can't really replace graphics card on a laptop, sucks. Ok well, that laptop doesn't look too bad and it's reasonably priced, unlike other gaming laptops I've seen. I'm gonna stick with the laptops b/c if I get a PC EVERYONE in my house is gonna wanna use it, since they already use my laptop like it's theirs. Ok I'll look into finding gaming laptops. Thanks everybody!
  9. Or build a PC set it up with a strong password to lock out the unworthy and then let the lesser minions fight it out over the old laptop.
  10. Mousemonkey said:
    Or build a PC set it up with a strong password to lock out the unworthy and then let the lesser minions fight it out over the old laptop.

    :lol:
  11. Mousemonkey said:
    Or build a PC set it up with a strong password to lock out the unworthy and then let the lesser minions fight it out over the old laptop.


    OMG mousemonkey, you just made my day......
    ROFLMAO alongwith some of my co-workers....lol
  12. Glad I could spread some smiles. :)
  13. litex said:
    +1 for desktop. Changing out the gpu of a laptop is almost unheard of, mainly because in most cases you have to also replace the motherboard, and the cost of that is about the same as the cost of a new laptop.

    If you desperately need a laptop you can find good gaming laptops but they will cost a boatload (possibly over $1500).

    On the other hand you can build yourself an even better desktop for around $700.


    Actually gaming laptops have come down quit a bit. I just got an Asus w/4GB RAM, C2D and a 9800 w/512 dedicated memory for $849 at Best Buy. I probably could have down even better than that but I had a $700 credit at that store.
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