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What is VRAM?

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July 14, 2009 5:20:31 AM

what is VRAM? how is that related to GDDR3.
I want to buy the GeForce 8600 GTS, it's a GDDR3, is the VRAM for it 512MB or higher?

EDIT: how do I find the RAM on the Video card?

More about : vram

a b Î Nvidia
a c 171 U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 5:34:56 AM

Vram is the amount of RAM found on your VIDEO card.

I wouldn't bother with the 8600GTS. There are usually better buys out there now.
July 14, 2009 6:12:29 AM

well for under $100 what do you suggest?
I got PCI-e and need anything better than the 8600 GTS, perhaps 8800?
please respond

and how do I find the RAM on the Vid card?
Related resources
July 14, 2009 6:17:25 AM

jauser said:
and how do I find the RAM on the Vid card?


^^^WHAT>?

and a 4850 is $99 right now on newegg
July 14, 2009 6:31:08 AM

VRAM is stated on either the box, or off any e-tailer such as newegg it would be listed under specifications.
July 14, 2009 6:31:38 AM

and i agree with Commie, get a 4850 if you have a 100$ budget.
a b Î Nvidia
a c 171 U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 6:31:59 AM

Lets see, video card, under $100.... If you want to go cheap, try this one.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This is the good 9600GSO (actually the 8800GS). Not only is it only $55 not counting shipping or $20 MIR, it comes with a free copy of CoD, WaW. Not bad at all. If you want a more powerful card, try this one.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This is probably the fastest card you'll be able to get without going over $100. (much) Its an MSI 4830. $90, not counting shipping/tax, if tax applies to you. Shipping is probably just over $7, so you should be able to get this for ~$98. If you have to pay tax, it will be a few bucks over. If your willing to use rebates to get under $100, try this.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MSI 4850. Its going to be $110, with free shipping. Tax could push this closer to $120. It does come with a $20 MIR, so you'd be right at $100 shipped. No free game, but it is the most powerful card I saw for $100.
July 14, 2009 6:57:04 AM

sweet, thanks a lot 4745454b & aznguy0028
but see I don't know what the heck VRAM is? what specifically is it under in the Spec tab of Newegg?

and how is VRAM related to GDDR#?

see like in this line from 4745454b link:
MSI R4850-2D512-OC Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
(http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)

which one is the VRAM? and how is that related to GDDR#? and what is the 512MB and what is the 256-bit???! :heink: 
July 14, 2009 7:13:19 AM

Vram is the same thing. In the OLD days (486, pentium1) Memory on the card was called VRAM (video ram), the G in GDDR stands for GRAPHIC instead of video afaik. The DDR part stands for Double Data rate (ram is read from both the leading and trailing edges of a square wave instead of just leading.

512MB is 512 megabytes of ram, the 256 is basically the bus width in bits that can be accessed at once. If all things on a card are the same, the bigger the bus, the more information moved in a given unit of time (to put it in easy terms).
a b Î Nvidia
a c 171 U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 7:50:09 AM

I have a couple of thoughts on this. If you REALLY want to know what these terms are, start reading. Read as much as you can. Post in a new thread any questions you might have. This is really the only way to learn. RC did a good job, but there is so much more to bit width then he covered, nor would I expect him to hit it all. (Frequency, and type of DDR also play a huge part in memory through put.) You have to take everything into account, or you might not make the right choice.

The second way is to do what you did. Post in a forum and ask what the best card you can get for $$$. Notice that I said it was the 4850, along with some others. This is your hint that this is the best card you can afford. Who cares what the specs are if its the best you can get? Does it make any difference if it has X Vram instead of Y? Or that the bus is X bits wide instead of Y?

If you really want to know, I'd start with the wiki pages related to video cards. That should be a good primer. After that, start searching for articles from toms, anandtech, xbit labs, etc for more detailed information. Don't forget to also read the stickies in the video card forum on this site as information is there as well.
a b U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 8:29:43 AM

If you want a good 4850 card - and that is a great model as everyone has said - you can get a good one for $90AR - MSI - Same as the one cited above by 4745454b.

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

There is another version of the same card for $7 less with a different heatsink/fan arrangement but it appears to be nosier.

But the real question is what do you want to do with your computer? Do you need this expensive of a card? It is considered towards the higher end of mainstream cards. Another strong card - again just for video and basic gaming - for $60AR is the HIS 4670

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Read some the the newegg reviews about the user experiences. But also note that performance depends on what you are using it for - and if games - what games at what resolutions with what features.

Also its worth noting that the 4850 card runs hotter (not surprising since it uses more power) and does not directly expel the air from the case. So you also need to make sure you have reasonable air flow and ventilation.

So do you nead a $60 card or a $90 card. Depends on what you are doing - and frankly your personal budget and preferences as well. The $90 card will be two to four times faster than the lesser card - a huge increase in performance for the price. But do you need that extra power? If not now do you want the extra power to grow into? Or does the $60 card do everything you need and you can find better uses for the $30 difference?
a b U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 9:02:12 AM

What is Vram?
4745454B's suggestion is a good one - go look up video cards at wiki.

Also, a simple solution is just to search google on "vram". The top link returned by google takes you right back to wicki where you find an excellent definition.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VRAM

Then just continue - when looking at these articles, click on some of the links - both those buried in the text and related sources on the side. Or put some more of the terms you learn back into the Wiki or google searches.

Also have you looked at the graphics card chart here at THG? If not you can see the wide range of performance for different cards and different games - here is the mainstream card list and there is a separate one for higher performance cards.

http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/gaming-graphics-card...

Or read the monthly article on recommended graphics cards at different price levels to start understanding a little about different cards and seeing the wide range of performance levels:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-geforce-pric...

Or for any graphics cards - but maybe especially for the ones you might be considering - just google the name of the card plus reviews and see what you can learn about them.

The Internet awaits you and desires to quench your hunger for knowledge.

[oops - mixed metaphor - should be quench your thirst for knowledge. Could not just change because of reference in later post]
a b Î Nvidia
a c 171 U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 9:48:29 AM

The thing that gets me is why people want us to reinvent the wheel all the time. If I felt like writing a paper on video cards, I'd do it. There are so many things to consider that it would be a serious undertaking. Differences in cores, different types of shaders, frequency for both core and memory, memory bus width, RAM type, ROPs, and plenty of other things I haven't mentioned. Worse, once you get done talking about all these things, you have to talk about how they relate to each other. For example, the same GPU is in the 4850 and the 4870. The 4870 GPU clock speed is 125MHz faster then the 4850. (20%) In terms of memory however, the 4870 is nearly twice as fast due to the DDR5 memory. To me, this says the 4850 has a memory bandwidth issue, and overclockers should try to maximize that number. The information is out there, you just have to look for it. You should also make sure you have a good resource to help you understand it.

Quote:
The Internet awaits you and desires to quench your hunger for knowledge.


Wait, the internet is for more then just p0rn?
a b U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 12:54:02 PM

you could always use google or wikipedia to find out what something is
a b U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 6:43:01 PM

4745454b said:


Wait, the internet is for more then just p0rn?


Not everyone would go to the Internet for porn, so they had to come up with a way to entice others to use the net and be seduced into obsessive use. Geeks are their patsy. I think once everyone is addicted to being online, they will turn off the rest of the web, and hike access fees, and rule the world.
July 14, 2009 6:52:09 PM

4745454b said:
I have a couple of thoughts on this. If you REALLY want to know what these terms are, start reading. Read as much as you can. Post in a new thread any questions you might have. This is really the only way to learn. RC did a good job, but there is so much more to bit width then he covered, nor would I expect him to hit it all. (Frequency, and type of DDR also play a huge part in memory through put.) You have to take everything into account, or you might not make the right choice.

The second way is to do what you did. Post in a forum and ask what the best card you can get for $$$. Notice that I said it was the 4850, along with some others. This is your hint that this is the best card you can afford. Who cares what the specs are if its the best you can get? Does it make any difference if it has X Vram instead of Y? Or that the bus is X bits wide instead of Y?

If you really want to know, I'd start with the wiki pages related to video cards. That should be a good primer. After that, start searching for articles from toms, anandtech, xbit labs, etc for more detailed information. Don't forget to also read the stickies in the video card forum on this site as information is there as well.


+1 xbit labs..they rock !
July 14, 2009 7:53:08 PM

:cry:  :cry:  :cry: 
MSI R4850-2D512-OC Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
(http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)

just which one is the VRAM in that line or which is the VRAM in the spec tab from the link? :cry:  :heink: 
a b U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 8:01:23 PM

512MB. That is the Vram. It tells you that it has 512MB of VRAM. Just like everyone above has told you.

The full VRAM spec is the 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 portion, which tells you that it has 512 MB of GDDR3 hooked up on a 256 bit bus.

Out of curiosity, why are you so concerned with the vram? It isn't the only factor by far in the performance of the card.
July 14, 2009 8:20:58 PM

because Street Fighter Sys req said so, *cry*
I'm noob, I just want to play SF4 *CRY*

4745454b
Quote:
The information is out there, you just have to look for it. You should also make sure you have a good resource to help you understand it.


Great resource starts in this thread! :lol: 
a b Î Nvidia
a c 171 U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 8:30:22 PM

Does the rest of your system meet the specs? Why can't you state the problem instead of asking about Vram?
a b U Graphics card
July 14, 2009 11:45:15 PM

jauser said:
because Street Fighter Sys req said so, *cry*
I'm noob, I just want to play SF4 *CRY*

4745454b
Quote:
The information is out there, you just have to look for it. You should also make sure you have a good resource to help you understand it.


Great resource starts in this thread! :lol: 

Street fighter 4 looks like it requires 256MB. The 4850 has 512MB. You're fine.
!