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Upgrade path from a Radeon 4600

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 7, 2009 2:58:39 PM

I currently have a Dell with a 300 W power supply and a Radeon 4600 series card. What is my upgrade path? Can I go to a 4800 series with a 300 W power supply? Do I need to upgrade the power and the card? Should I look at SLI? Or is my PC stuck where it is?

My reason to upgrade is games, of course. There are a bunch of new ones coming in Sept. and I want to be ready.

I'm at work so I do not have the exact details, but I think my system is: 2.3 g dual core (or core duo - I get them confused), 4 gig RAM, Vista 64 bit.

Thanks for any advice.
a c 169 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
July 7, 2009 8:09:20 PM

U definitely need to change your PSU if u are going to upgrade to HD 48xx series or cards like them.
July 7, 2009 9:39:25 PM

I was afraid of that - thank you for the help :) 
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July 8, 2009 2:30:36 AM

Dell psu's are a lot better than everyone thinks. The one in my old e521 puts out 23A on the 12v?

It's got a 4670 in it right now but I have tested it and I got a 9800gt running in it just fine.

You could probably get a single slot 4850 or 4830 and try that.

Even a 4770 would do you good.

Worst case scenario: You need a new psu. So go spend 20-40 bucks on a decent replacement.

Being unsure about your processor it looks like you wont be bottlenecked by anything except you ram speed, which is probably locked at 667.
a c 107 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
July 8, 2009 3:59:17 PM

Actually AlphaOmegaX, the worst case scenario is that the PSU can't handle the load so it blows and takes the rest of the computer with it. Anyway, your system probably only has one PCI-E slot so no crossfire for you.

The 4770 uses less power than the 4850 or 4830, so you may be able to use that with your system and be o.k.. Personally I wouldn't :D . If you are going to go and buy a PSU then I recommend you think about getting a good 550-600W PSU so that you can crossfire two midrange cards in the future.
a c 191 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
July 8, 2009 4:26:18 PM

@ Mashuguna: Exactly which Dell? And which type of case? Dell use a number of smaller cases which will restrict the card choice to low-profile if that is what you have.
Also, what resolution? It would be pointless putting a big, fast card into a system with a 19" 1280x1024 pixel monitor.
Without that information: The HD4670 is good to go or a HD4770/9600GT/9800GT (NOT GTX or GTX+) will run on that PSU, provided it has a single 6 pin PCI-E connector and you want a bit more graphical punch.
Anything more and it would be a good idea to add 60-70 dollars US for a PSU upgrade.
July 8, 2009 7:46:26 PM

megamanx00 said:
Actually AlphaOmegaX, the worst case scenario is that the PSU can't handle the load so it blows and takes the rest of the computer with it. Anyway, your system probably only has one PCI-E slot so no crossfire for you.

The 4770 uses less power than the 4850 or 4830, so you may be able to use that with your system and be o.k.. Personally I wouldn't :D . If you are going to go and buy a PSU then I recommend you think about getting a good 550-600W PSU so that you can crossfire two midrange cards in the future.

Having first hand experience with a ton of dell's. I can say...I don't know of one that's psu blew and took the entire system with it.

Worst I've seen is a failure to boot.
!