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AGP Video cards on Windows 7

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 12, 2009 8:28:13 PM

Hi everyone,

I'm looking for a new video card, an AGP 4X/8X video card, for my system that now runs the RC of Windows 7 and will eventually run 7 Ultimate when released.

So here's my problem, I had to replace my dead motherboard in my computer that is 6 years old. My current specs are P4 2.4Ghz, 1 gig RAM, and the video card is original to 2003 and it has only 64 mb of VRAM. So when I installed Windows 7, the installation installed a generic type driver on my video card and I can't install the correct driver from nVIDIA because the current versions are seriously non-compatible with it. It can't run Windows Aero theme which is kind of a bummer and used to only use DX 8. something in XP.

But what I'm getting lost about is with DirectX 10, I read that in Windows 7, DX 11 can be installed in DX 9 and 10 capable cards; so should I go with DX 10 or 9?

My computer only has one AGP 4X video slot, and in my BIOS, I checked what mb size my AGP aperture can be and it's only 256 mb. Now, should I chose a vid card with 256 mb of VRAM or 512?

My monitor that I have is an LCD at a resolution that can go to 1400 X 900, but it's at 1280 X 1024, the input for it is VGA, but I want to get a card that has a DVI port so I can hook up a VGA to DVI adapter cable so I don't have to deal with any analog degrading.

I plan to play Halo, and Halo 2, and maybe a few other games, right now with my current card, DX isn't available even though I installed DX on it. I've done a week or two of reaserch on this topic and I've found that a couple products from EVGA that would work, but their VRAM is 512 mb. What should I go with or is there something else that someone can recommend for my setup?


Even though it might be better in the long run to get a new system, but believe me, I've put in WAY TOO MUCH headache, frustration, and exhaustion into this clunker to drop it, and also I just recently installed a new motherboard, so that probably will get a couple or a few years of use.

Thanks!
August 12, 2009 8:47:26 PM

haveAcoke said:

Even though it might be better in the long run to get a new system, but believe me, I've put in WAY TOO MUCH headache, frustration, and exhaustion into this clunker to drop it, and also I just recently installed a new motherboard, so that probably will get a couple or a few years of use.
Thanks!


Sometimes you have to learn to let go .... that must be a really old rig if it's only agp4x. If it were mine I would totally change it. I know it's probably not what you wanted to hear but IMO your system, even with an upgraded video card, is only good for web surfing and word processing and the likes ..... may be some very casual gaming.

If you decide to change it, come back and list your entire rig specs .... maybe some components can be salvaged and reused in a new system.
August 13, 2009 12:31:28 AM

Well for agp system a ATI x1650 or a X1950 would probs be enough power to run windows 7, BUT your AGP is only 4X which means you would only get 50% of their full power.

DX 10 and 11 cannot be installed on DX9 cards, of course there are hacks. But you don't actually get any performance increase from those.

Also i would recommend 512MB RAM over 256 RAM.

A question though, Why are you even using Windows Vista/Windows 7
when Windows Xp will perform so much better with your hardware???



Related resources
a b U Graphics card
August 13, 2009 2:12:58 AM

Seriously either go back to xp or get a new computer.

The end.
August 13, 2009 3:50:19 AM

Well.. no not necessarily its his/her choice, with some more RAM and a possible CPU Overclock Vista/ Win 7 is VERY doable, of course it wont win any awards for speed.

Xp is just better suited for his/her hardware at the moment.
August 13, 2009 8:21:41 PM

Noobster15 said:
Well for agp system a ATI x1650 or a X1950 would probs be enough power to run windows 7, BUT your AGP is only 4X which means you would only get 50% of their full power.

DX 10 and 11 cannot be installed on DX9 cards, of course there are hacks. But you don't actually get any performance increase from those.

Also i would recommend 512MB RAM over 256 RAM.

A question though, Why are you even using Windows Vista/Windows 7
when Windows Xp will perform so much better with your hardware???



XP BLOWS!! I've had to reinstall it 3 times in 6 years, the last time I installed it was XP Pro because I wanted to see if there's any difference that Home, there isn't. And also, after I activated Windows, the next morning I started my computer, it said that it needs to be activated and the license key has been used over its limit, but I still had internet and finally, I installed 7.

But I wanted to install Windows 7 AFTER I upgraded my video card because with the Upgrade Advisor, it told me it doesn't support Aero theme. And in 5 years, XP from what I've heard, Microsoft won't support it or sell it anymore and I think, that's also when product keys will expire. I'm not 100% sure.


I have read now that DX 11 can actually be installed in DX 9 and 10 cards because I guess Microsoft learned their lesson with Vista and DX 10.



I'm not sure if this is just a mistake, but in DXDIAG, it says DX 11 is installed, but there are no DX features available so I can't run any games.
August 13, 2009 8:24:19 PM

Noobster15 said:
Well.. no not necessarily its his/her choice, with some more RAM and a possible CPU Overclock Vista/ Win 7 is VERY doable, of course it wont win any awards for speed.

Xp is just better suited for his/her hardware at the moment.



I've finally got around to buying a new video card to suit Windows 7 better, but my video card is the only thing that doesn't suit 7 so well. But in Xp, my video card did work in xp, but it's 6 years old on only DX 8 capable.
August 13, 2009 8:28:49 PM

LOL. first you say you are going to get W7 ULTIMATE then that there is no difference between XP Pro and XP Home! All windows versions are the same with different features enabled and disabled. If you aren't using the features in XP Pro, i seriously doubt you will need the features in W7 Ultimate.
August 14, 2009 12:52:22 AM

carickw said:
LOL. first you say you are going to get W7 ULTIMATE then that there is no difference between XP Pro and XP Home! All windows versions are the same with different features enabled and disabled. If you aren't using the features in XP Pro, i seriously doubt you will need the features in W7 Ultimate.



I think not, so far in the few weeks I've had it, I've used, probably all the features that my video card can handle. All I have to day about it, FLIPPIN" AWESOME! It's SO more efficient productive wise than XP.
August 14, 2009 2:08:36 AM

so you've used xp mode? and:

"Windows 7 Ultimate brings to the table several features not found in the Premium and Professional versions, at least eight of them that we know about. Three of them include BranchCache, Enterprise Search, and DirectAccess, all of which are of much more interest to Enterprise environments than for a typical home user. For the latter group, the full language pack, Bitlocker, and AppLocker might hold a bit more appeal.

That leaves Virtual Desktop Interface and Virtual Hard Drive Booting as the two remaining known features that only Ultimate users will have access to."

from: http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/windows_7_ultimat...
August 14, 2009 2:36:19 AM

carickw said:
so you've used xp mode? and:

"Windows 7 Ultimate brings to the table several features not found in the Premium and Professional versions, at least eight of them that we know about. Three of them include BranchCache, Enterprise Search, and DirectAccess, all of which are of much more interest to Enterprise environments than for a typical home user. For the latter group, the full language pack, Bitlocker, and AppLocker might hold a bit more appeal.

That leaves Virtual Desktop Interface and Virtual Hard Drive Booting as the two remaining known features that only Ultimate users will have access to."

from: http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/windows_7_ultimat...



Well, I did say, probably all of the features, I'm not going to use XP mode because I honestly don't have any software programs that will only run XP (for I try to use newer software, specially now with 7 I use Vista certified software). Even then, if I were to upgrade my RAM, I'd need to install the newer BIOS version for my motherboard and I've read that some things might not work with my system such as screwing with IRQ management, and also, I really don't want to tinker with my motherboard anymore other than upgrading certain hardware.
August 14, 2009 2:44:40 AM

So I found a video card that suits my needs, such as a fan that blows exhaust air OUT of the computer and not circulate warm air inside the case. BUT, in one of the descriptions, it says that 450W is recommended. AND, my PSU is only 250W. So that might be no beuno. I looked up weather or not I could possibly install that card without damaging it, there is a chance. I've also looked up that if I have quite a bit of hardware installed in and on my computer, that'll drag the power supply down and that video card won't work.

I don't have a lot of hardware, other than 2 hard drives (I'll be upgrading it soon and keep a 30gig drive as random spill-over), 2 disk drives, floppy drive, gig of RAM, and my video card. So if anyone recommends a lower wattage or if that setup would work, please reply.

Thanks!!!
August 14, 2009 5:25:50 AM

450 watts is the MINIMUM

If it is too low ether your computer will not start, it will be very unstable or you could damage more than just your Video card (Motherboard, RAM, CPU)

Your setup will not work, definitely go for a 500 watt+ PSU just to be safe.

Also what card is this?
August 14, 2009 6:01:38 AM

Noobster15 said:
450 watts is the MINIMUM

If it is too low ether your computer will not start, it will be very unstable or you could damage more than just your Video card (Motherboard, RAM, CPU)

Your setup will not work, definitely go for a 500 watt+ PSU just to be safe.

Also what card is this?



This is one of the HIS products, I like this type of model because it actually exhausts the exhaust and not just circulate warm air around. Seems I need to keep on looking! :) 
a b U Graphics card
a b $ Windows 7
August 14, 2009 8:05:24 AM

Noobster15 said:
450 watts is the MINIMUM

If it is too low ether your computer will not start, it will be very unstable or you could damage more than just your Video card (Motherboard, RAM, CPU)

Your setup will not work, definitely go for a 500 watt+ PSU just to be safe.

Also what card is this?

450 is definitely not the minimum. Usually, the video card recommendation is based around a fairly power hungry system and a fairly crappy PSU. If you have an average system and a good PSU, you almost never need as much as the video card recommendation. Something like the Corsair 400 would have more than enough power for example (while something like a Raidmax 450 or 500 might fail spectacularly).
August 14, 2009 6:47:35 PM

And is it worth the risk?

I think not.
a c 164 U Graphics card
August 14, 2009 8:00:55 PM

If you have a single core P4 then do n't bother, it's pathetically weak for recent games and will savagely restrict even a HD4650, which is really a minimum card for decent gameplay.
Replacing the CPU/MB/RAM/PSU and graphics could be done for under $300 US and you would have a system that is light years ahead of the one you currently have.
a c 164 U Graphics card
August 14, 2009 8:28:13 PM

Just to prove the point:

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

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

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

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

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

Obviously, not everything there is going to be everyones cup of tea, and you may question my choice of such a powerful PSU, the SLI capable MB and weak CPU.
The reasoning: The MB, PSU and memory will all allow for some upgrading later while the CPU is quite weak it's a well known overclocking deamon, and the MB will support that.
a b U Graphics card
a b $ Windows 7
August 14, 2009 9:47:31 PM

Noobster15 said:
And is it worth the risk?

I think not.

What risk would there be with a Corsair 400 (for example)? That PSU is more than enough. Something like a Seasonic 380 would also be more than enough (like this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151072). I've got a computer with a 3870 (450W recommended) running on a 375W PSU just fine (and it has been running for nearly 2 years now). As long as your PSU is good quality, you do not need as much as is recommended (and there is no risk in using a good quality PSU that is a bit under the recommended level). 250W is probably not enough though, so you would have to replace your current PSU with something stronger to run the card.
August 14, 2009 10:08:19 PM

Hold the phone for a good moment, I've looked up that I can buy, a PCI-e to AGP bracket so it'll convert AGP instructions into PCI-e. And Since PCI-e cards are relatively cheaper and are everywhere, should I shoot for that?

I think that probably would be a better solution because when I do get a new puter, I can just pop the pre-installed one and install the better one from my old system.

Does anyone know about something like this?
August 14, 2009 10:21:17 PM

Nope, screw that.
a b U Graphics card
a b $ Windows 7
August 14, 2009 10:33:08 PM

Nope -I'd be quite surprised if that even worked at all, and if it does, it won't give the PCI-E card anywhere near full bandwidth. Honestly, you'd be better off just getting a new system at this point.
August 15, 2009 3:52:45 PM

So I looked up and found actual relevant info for my system and from what I read, my power supply is 250W with a 365 peak. Unless if I have a load of devices installed, which I don't, I can support a 300W card with no problems IF, that's the main wattage use.
!