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Best graphics card to play Second Life

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 10, 2010 12:04:18 AM

Hey Group - new member here.

I have a Dell Studio XPS 435MT with 8GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive.
My processor is an Intel Core i7 CPU 940 @ 2.93GHz.
My current video graphics card is an ATI Radeon HD 4800 series with 512 MB of video memory.
I'm running Windows 7 Home Premium edition.

I didn't see this card listed as a card that Second Life recommends. When playing SL, after awhile the screen gets a bunch of red square dots, then thick vertical lines, then many thin horizontal lines, then freezes and I have to reboot. It has the latest drivers from ATI (v8.681.0.0) and works fine for everything else - but I guess it's not sufficient to run SL. I also installed the ATI CCC - but not sure if tweaking that would make any difference.

Are there other things that should be taken into consideration when playing SL? I've been seeing discussions about frame rate, over-clocking and special viewers. I'm a novice at SL - so any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

gman
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2010 12:10:06 AM

Any 4800 series card is way enough to run Second Life. There is a problem elsewhere, either a bad card or something else in your pc isn't right. Much more important than your graphics card is your internet connection for this.
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a c 189 U Graphics card
January 10, 2010 12:18:34 AM

What about your PSU? model? brand?
with that system and HD 4800 series, i think u can play it with high setting... :) 
about the red square dots or vertical lines, it seems your card is overheating or even defective...
Your card's temps?
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Related resources
January 10, 2010 3:17:36 AM

Quote:
Any 4800 series card is way enough to run Second Life. There is a problem elsewhere, either a bad card or something else in your pc isn't right. Much more important than your graphics card is your internet connection for this.

I have a Comcast broadband connection. I did a speed test using Speedtest.net - here are the results:

Ping: 14 ms
Upload: 4.56 Mb/s
Download: 23.24 Mb/s

Also did a test using Speakeasy.net - here are the results:

Upload: 4.65 Mb/s
Download: 24.36 Mb/s

Are these numbers in the ballpark?

Thanks,

gman_55
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January 10, 2010 3:25:52 AM

wa1 said:
What about your PSU? model? brand?
with that system and HD 4800 series, i think u can play it with high setting... :) 
about the red square dots or vertical lines, it seems your card is overheating or even defective...
Your card's temps?

Not sure how to find info about the PSU without opening up the system. Can't find the info on Dell's website either. Is there a way to find out this info without having to open up the system?

Also - is there an online tool to determine the card's temp?

Thanks,

gman_55
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2010 3:45:08 AM

Try HWMonitor to view temps.
www.cpuid.com/hwmonitor.php

Recommended means minimum to play game at medium/high settings, even a 4830 would KILL Second Life, the game's graphics are primitive by today's standards.
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January 20, 2010 12:09:18 AM

To all who attempted to help. Dell finally agreed to replace the video card. All seems to be working fine now. Thanks for your help.
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February 14, 2010 5:20:00 PM

hey gman! hope the replaced video card helped.. it sounded like a bad card to me and nothing to do with your internet connection speed etc. but opinions are free as you know lol I am trying to find out what would be the best video card for SL myself and I am sure will get answers like you did... umm that card would be more than enough to run SL which is weak by todays standards etc. which goes to show how clueless most are when answering questions. unless you actually run the environment and are aware of what settings are available etc. you have no clue and should stick to running WOW lol. SL is a sleeper and most have no idea how visually graphic it can be with the right card and I would like to build a new system for SL only using the best card I can afford. anyways have fun and im me in world if you like at Aengus McCallen
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