Before I make changes to this new computer ... I wanted to be sure I was dead in the water with Second Life ... which is only game I play ... the ATI HD 3450 does not seem to run SL fast enough to be usable ... very slow frame rates ... and frequent crashes ... my understanding is that the 3450 does not support OpenGL and therefore the CPU is doing the work ... instead of the GPU ... has anyone found a fix for this ... to make this graphics card perform with SL ... if not ... and if SL is the only real requirement I have ... what cards will work well with SL ... and would not require upgrading my PSU ... Nvidia 8500? ... I am using XP ... although I have upgrade to Vista available ... if that is an issue ... thanks ... Jo
Okay, Second Life can be run on a number of graphics cards to varying degrees, I used to run it on a ATI X1600pro but to get decent frame rates with decent graphics you're going to need a 512mg graphics card.
My suggestion is something from the ATI HD4800 series (the 4850, 4870 or 4890).
obviously those three cards are going to require power from the PSU so as I don't know what your PSU is I can't advise fully.
As for the Upgrade from XP to Vista, there's no point doing that yet. If you haven't upgraded yet then wait till Windows 7 is released and jump Vista completely.