Upgrade from GeForce 8500 GT 256MB

I have a Gateway system I purchased about 2 years ago. I would like some ideas on the best possible video card upgrade my system can take advantage of. It will be used for gaming and picture/video editing. Thank you in advance for helping a noob.

Intel G33 Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4 GHz (with VT)
3 MB DDR2 667 MHz
400 W power supply
One PCI Express x16

Please let me know if you need any more info. Thanks
11 answers Last reply
More about upgrade geforce 8500 256mb
  1. How much is your budget and what screen resolution do you play at? Anything above a HD 5670 will require a bigger PSU.
    Probly something like a 5770 for 1680x1050 or a 4890/5830(when it comes out) will be good for 1920x1080. You mostlikly cant overclock the Gateway system but if you can get it to 3.0 to 3.4 Ghz then a 5850 would be the highest you could go for max performance, but only if you can overclock.
  2. What games are you usually playing, what is your budget, and are you prepared to shell out some more money for a new PSU?
  3. I haven't really set a budget. Once I get an idea of what's available to me I will make a decision. As far a resolution goes, I would like to play with the maximum I can without any lag. I have an Acer AL2216W widescreen monitor, but I dont know what it's max resolution is. I have no plans to try to overclock and would prefer to get what's best using the native speeds. I mostly play COD MW2 (poorly I might add). I would possibly purchase a new PSU if that is what is keeping me from a better card.

    Thanks for you reply and I look forward to any more info you may be able to provide.
  4. Acer AL2216W has a resolution of 1680x1050. So a 5770 ($170) will be good. A 4890 ($200) will give you more horsepower with AA enabled but is not DX11 so you wont get that goodness when you get a DX11 game. If you are in no hurry then a 5830 would be a good look (~$220?) with DX11, it was supposed to come out Feb 5th but it got held back another 2-3ish weeks for some reason.
  5. Thank you for the info. Will the 5770 and/or the 5830 work with my current power supply (400 W and a 6 pin plug available)?

    Thanks again.
  6. No, the 5770 specs want 450w and the 5830 could be 500w.
  7. Thanks. Do you think the gain in performance of the 5770/5830 over the 5670 is worth purchasing a new PSU? If I were to purchase a new PSU, would I be able to move up to a video card better than the 5830, or am I limited by another part of my system such as the processor speed?

    Thank you for your willingness to help a beginner. I look forward to your response.
  8. http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/radeon-hd-5670,review-31787.html
    The 5670 in this review can handle 1680x1050 with mostly ~med settings and playable minimum frames. note that the article only shows the 5750, so the 5770 will have higher FPS or maybe the same FPS with settings set to high.

    A new quality 500-600w PSU will allow you to use the higher end 5770 all the way up to the 5870 infact, but it will cost you around $70 +/- 20 for a quality Corsair, PC Power & Cooling, Antec, or Seasonic. Or one thats atlest 80 Plus Certified (very important), but if you do get one of the ones Ive listed you will be able to re-use it for your next few computers, so that gives some added value for future use.

    I wold say a 4890/5830 would be your limit because of your Q6600 is at 2.4Ghz. A 5850 would be overkill anyway for a 1680x1050 screen, but you will not have to upgrade you card for a very long time in return.
  9. Thank you for the great info. So it sounds like a new PSU coupled with a 4890/5830 would be the way to go, given my current system. In your opinion, would this be a noticeable (possibly very noticeable) difference over the 8500 GT I am running now? Just wondering if it would be worth the $300 price tag.

    Thanks again for all your help. Please give me your opinion about the change and I will most likely not bother you anymore other than to say thanks.
  10. http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/charts/gaming-graphics-cards-charts-2009-high-quality-update-3/compare,1697.html?prod%5B3260%5D=on&prod%5B3243%5D=on

    Shows the 4890 to the 8600GTS (GTS is slightly faster than the GT)
    Atlest 3x faster at 1680x1050 and 4x at 1920x1080 x5 with AA. Very noticable indeed.
  11. Thank you again for all of your help.
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