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What type of slot is this and what is it used for?

Last response: in Motherboards
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May 1, 2010 10:12:10 AM

hey this is my first time using tomshardware so be nice :D 
anyway about a month ago we had a power surge which fried the motherboards of our computers that were in use at the time. in the mean time my family has had to make use of a 15(ish) year old computer that struggles with just one window open at a time...
so i was thinking about putting a second hand video card in it to speed it up a fraction as at the moment it is only using its 8mb onboard chip. i had a look at the mother board and there was a couple of the usual pci slots plus another black slot underneath that i wasnt sure of.

so im wondering what exactly is this slot and what is it used for??
is it for video cards etc, and if so would it be better to buy a video card for this slot or a pci slot?

heres a pic of the motherboard i found on google. (sorry about the quality)
the MB's model number is VP4-686A if this helps?



(its the black slot underneath the pci slots)

More about : type slot

a b V Motherboard
a b U Graphics card
May 1, 2010 10:28:24 AM

That slot is an ISA slot. It extremely old. In 1997 (more or less) you could find some sound cards (Sound blaster AWE) for that slot . Nowadays, there is not any ISA card available. Just forget it.
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a b V Motherboard
a b U Graphics card
May 1, 2010 10:35:34 AM

Well, the closest thing it resembles is an AGP 3.3V port. I don't think you'd be able to find any AGP 3.3V cards - besides, upgrading the CPU would show a greater performance boost.

Edit: Got served by Chinaski. Least I know what it is now... :D 
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May 1, 2010 10:49:39 AM

ok thanks. the main reason im wanting to get a video card instead of upgrading the cpu etc is to watch movies. at the moment whenever i try to play and avi or mpg4 the media player will come up with that error message saying it needs to close and i thought the obvious reason for this would be because of the the lack of graphics power. do you think something like a second hand 32 or 64mb pci video card would allow me to play avi's etc? im only looking at spending around $10-$20 as the only reason this computer is being used at the moment is because all my other computers are stuffed. these are the basic specs for this computer atm:
-windows xp sp2
-AMD K6 500mhz cpu
-320mbs ram
-trident blade 3d/mpv4 8mb
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a b V Motherboard
a b U Graphics card
May 1, 2010 10:56:56 AM

Well, you could probably get a new computer if you're willing to spend around $200 or so, if the time it takes for your other computers to be repaired is quite a while, it would be worth it. AFAIK, playing videos stresses out the CPU more than the video card, especially in older computers where GPUs weren't used to decode videos.
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a b V Motherboard
a b U Graphics card
May 1, 2010 11:03:02 AM

Don't waste your money in that cpu. You can't do anything.
I would go for this cheap cofiguration (150€):
- AMD SEMPRON 140 2.7GHZ SKT AM3 1MB
- Gigabyte GA-MA785GM-US2H "AMD 785G/SB710" DDR2 ACC HD4200HDMI ALC889A
- G.Skill 1x2GB DDR2-800 F2-6400CL5S-2GBPQ 5-5-5-15 (1.8-1.9V)

You have a good mobo that allows you to unlock the other core of the Sempron and, moreover, you don't need to buy a graphic card because it has the HD4200 graphic chip integrated.
2Gb is enough, anyway you have another 2 slots to increase the amoung of memory if needed.
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May 1, 2010 11:14:32 AM

ahk thanks for the suggestions but im not looking at spending much money (if any) as we only just bought one of the other computers several months ago and when we do get it back im gonna be looking at spending another $400 for a new video card and psu as the video card on that computer has died aswell.
i dont really want to buy a new computer even if its an old cheap one as once we have our newest computer back this ones gonna be going back into storage :p 
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May 1, 2010 11:31:29 AM

oh and i know this question should be in a different part of the forums but do you guys have an opinion on the radeon 5770's as thats what im gonna be looking at buying?
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a b V Motherboard
a b U Graphics card
May 1, 2010 11:35:53 AM

The 5770 has the best price/performance ratio. Talking about the brands, I would go for HIS or Sapphire.
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May 1, 2010 11:59:48 AM

ok thanks for the advice.
by the way i was looking at my motherboard specifications on 'system info for windows' (SIW) before and it was showing that i have 4 PCI slots, 4 ISA slots and one AGP slot, would this be an error of the SIW as this was why i was wondering if the slot was actually an AGP?
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May 2, 2010 6:55:37 AM

ahk, i was talking about my old computer's motherboard showing as having 4 ISAs and an AGP when i couldnt see an AGP slot on it. I know the computer thats getting repaired atm has an PCIex16 slot as i used to have a HIS Radeon x1600 Pro PCiex16 in it.
thanks for all your help tho :D 

oh one last thing, do you know of any old cpu's faster than my AMD-K6 500mhz that would go in my VP4-686A motherboard?
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