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A few video card questions

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  • Tuner Cards
  • Graphics Cards
  • Graphics
Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 26, 2009 6:50:14 PM

System: Windows XP
Processor: 2.4GHz Intel Core Duo T8300
RAM: 2.00 GB
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT
Laptop Case: Micro Express JFL92

Hi, I have been having trouble with an overheating video card, but I would also like to upgrade it to a more powerful one (which i'm sure will overheat faster). I play a couple computer games that require a more powerful video card, because I have to play them at lowest video settings and it still overheats at times, which I'm sure is due to the cooling system.

I would like to know if anyone can help me figure out what kind of video card slot I have, and how installing additional cooling fans works. I would like it to be internal, but would it be much better to get an external cooling pad ($10-20 at electronic stores) to place my laptop on?

When I right-click on My Computer>Properties>Hardware tab>Device Manager>Display Adapters ('+' sign)>Right-Click NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT>Properties I find it tells me the video card location is PCI Slot 6 (PCI bus1, device 0, function 0). I have no idea what this means besides I have some sort of PCI slot. does this mean I have only a PCI and not PCI express etc.? Also, I cannot find the amount of VRAM that I have and cannot find anything on the internet about finding VRAM that works for me.

Thank you to the kind soul who is willing to answer any of these questions.

More about : video card questions

a b U Graphics card
August 26, 2009 7:18:57 PM

There's a very good chance that you do not have any VRAM. It may well be that the GPU shares the system memory with the CPU.

It's a very rare - and expensive - laptop that will let you upgrade the graphics system. You are pretty much stuck with whatever is built into the laptop.
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a b U Graphics card
August 26, 2009 7:30:04 PM

The Geforce 8600M GT is just onboard graphics. That mean's that it's part of your motherboard and not an actual card. There is no possibility to upgrade.
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August 26, 2009 8:00:35 PM

Okay, thanks for the help, this all seems correct, but I may have found something interesting. I just put in my JFL92 Driver Disc/User Manual and looked at the manual to find some information on replacing the fan/graphics card. Now in this manual it claims my computer has a PCI-E slot right above my headphone/mic openings. I found this to be true, and I can push it in, which makes it spring outward, and through this slot I am supposed to be able to put in PCI-express cards (obviously after disabling my 8600M GT). However, when I popped it out, there was no card there, just the plastic dispenser(for lack of better word). I have no experience with PCI-E cards, so I don't know how big they are, but the only way one would fit in that slot is if it was 1/4" tall and about 2" wide.

Does anyone think it would be possible to put a card in there, and make it functional? It looks like I can upgrade the card, but I have to still keep the other video card in the motherboard.
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a b U Graphics card
August 26, 2009 8:17:42 PM

Contact your laptop manufacturer for the best answer. I doubt they are making microsized 3d gaming cards to switch out in laptop that's better than your 8600MGT.
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August 26, 2009 8:21:24 PM

Yeah I sent them an email a couple days ago, and haven't gotten a reply, which is why I'm here.
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August 26, 2009 8:32:21 PM

Upon further investigation of what goes in this port, I'm finding lots of "mini wireless pci cards"...Clearly for wireless networks. Do PCI-express slots accomodate more than video cards? I'm beginning to think this slot is actually only for external wireless cards, though I have an internal already.
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a b U Graphics card
August 26, 2009 8:37:35 PM

you dont get cards you can put in there that slot can be used for firewire /extra usb card/conectivity card/
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August 26, 2009 8:44:30 PM

I would say what you popped out is similar to pcmcia slot.. may be called ci express. bt I don't think it would have the bandwidth required for graphics card... unless you paid over k for it.. i doubt you have this option.. I could however be wrong, but i dont think so..
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August 26, 2009 10:52:24 PM

Okay thanks, fairly convinced I cannot change out my video card now. I am sad, but hopefully I can still work out my fan problems.
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a b U Graphics card
August 27, 2009 3:47:06 AM

that slot is an express slot, its based off pci-express and has a bandwidth of a 1x slot, so not a whole lot of bandwidth so not many video cards, there are a few solutions out there, but you are talking a lot of money for just the external apparatus a not including the GPU

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/vidock-expresscard-...
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August 27, 2009 5:13:11 AM

What I'm understanding is that I can buy one of these Vidocks (large, external graphics "card") that has a "male component" that would fit into my female PCI slot? Yes, quite pricy, but if what I am understanding is true, it will be an option for me in the future. I'm sure I can control the temp of an external GPU much easier.
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August 27, 2009 5:20:41 AM

even if you do get one of those, it's for external monitors only, it wont work with your laptop's screen
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August 27, 2009 8:23:12 PM

ah, well that's just not good to hear. Thanks, though, this forum is really great, I'm learning a lot from reading everyone's threads
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