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Upgrading graphics card for Acer x3200 - can I get a 9600 GT?

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February 6, 2010 9:23:22 AM

Hello,

I have an Acer x3200 which I love to bits - except that the graphics card can't handle any new games, even on the smallest screen setting. My endless days of research have led me to the conclusion that the best graphics card I can get is the Nvidia 9600 GT, because it's low profile and will fit my PCI Express 2.0 slot. However, my computer has a 230W PSU and the lowest power 9600 GT I can find is Galaxy's, which still requires 300W.

Is it really risky to install such a card, will it fry my beloved computer? What other cards would be safe (obviously they need to be considerably better than the 8200)? And how difficult/expensive is it to upgrade the PSU?

Sorry for all the questions. When it comes to graphics cards, I am pretty clueless.
February 6, 2010 12:03:43 PM

Thanks for your replies mate. A few more questions:

Er, what's a GPU?

Is the HD 5750 a really good card then? And is it going to fit in my PCI Express 2.0 slot?

Is it hard to install a new PSU?

One other thing I forgot to ask earlier too - my PC came, as I mentioned, with an Nvidia 8200 graphics card pre-installed. When I add a new card, will the PC use both of them?

This is all very confusing. I'm an Xbox 360 head really, and so all this techy stuff is new to me!





February 6, 2010 12:18:28 PM

These are my specs, if it helps:

ACER ASPIRE X3200 AMD Phenom X3 8550 Triple-Core 3GB 320GB LAN WLAN
DVDRW NVIDIA GeForce 8200 VGA Vista Home Premium

Acer Aspire X3200 Desktop PC
AMD Phenom X3 (8550) 2.2GHz 2048KB L3 Cache
320GB SATA II Hard Disk Drive
3072MB (3GB) DDR2 667/800MHz RAM
AMD 780G Chipset
NVIDIA GeForce 8200 up to 896MB VRAM
DVD-RW Optical Drive
Gigabit Ethernet LAN
18-In-1 Multi-Card Reader
Related resources
a c 189 U Graphics card
February 6, 2010 12:32:36 PM

Your case is mini-tower, right?
So u are on the right track searching for a low profile card that can fit on your case... :) 
But your PSU is really low, if u want to upgrade the card then u absolutely must upgrade your PSU too. But make sure it will fit on your case.
February 6, 2010 1:02:41 PM

I found this review of the 9500 GT, which seems to suggest that my PC could handle it. Look at the watts used: http://www.legitreviews.com/article/760/13/

I guess that the 9500 GT probably isn't as good as the HD 5750, but I'd rather not start tinkering with my computer's PSU if I can help it!

February 6, 2010 1:37:09 PM

Thanks Okini I will take a good look at that one. Does it matter that it's GDDR3 and my memory is DDR2?
February 7, 2010 10:04:14 AM

Hey Okini, I have done more research and I seem to keep coming back to your suggestion of the 4560, so I'm gonna take your advice! I found it really cheap here: http://tinyurl.com/ygkepgd

I just hope it doesn't fry my PC! Other people seem to have tried it with their 220W PSUs though, so hopefully it will be okay...

Is there any way of monitoring your power consumption?

Nick
February 7, 2010 2:14:18 PM

I thought that if my PC runs DDR2 memory then I need DDR2?
February 7, 2010 4:49:42 PM

Damn. Too late anyway, I already purchased the 4560. Hopefully it will be good enough for me, I don't need anything too amazing.
February 7, 2010 7:45:25 PM

Thanks man. I'll let you know how I get on!
February 9, 2010 6:44:28 AM

Will I have to take out the old NVidia card that came with my HTPC, or should I leave it in there? I presume the one that came with it is built into the motherboard. With that in mind, shouldn't I have perhaps bought an NVidia card so that the two cards can combine and boost the graphics horsepower?
February 11, 2010 6:53:43 PM

My existing card is integrated into the motherboard, I found out.

I got my card today and installed it with no problems. Played Pro Evo 2010 on high quality and a medium size screen setting and it was LOADS better than before.

I just hope that my PSU can handle it over time! Thanks for you all your help though guys, particularly Okini!
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
March 4, 2010 7:07:56 PM

biddwiser said:
My existing card is integrated into the motherboard, I found out.

I got my card today and installed it with no problems. Played Pro Evo 2010 on high quality and a medium size screen setting and it was LOADS better than before.

I just hope that my PSU can handle it over time! Thanks for you all your help though guys, particularly Okini!


Hi

Im looking to do the same thing. How do you install it? Are their instructions online?

Cheers
March 4, 2010 8:38:19 PM

You take the screws off the back and then take the side off the base unit. You attach the new graphics card at the top of the rear of the base unit where it fits. However, you need to modify the graphics card first using the extra plate and screws that are supplied with the card, otherwise it's too big and sticks out too far!

It's really easy - well it was in my case! If you have any other questions please ask - I'd be glad to help!
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2010 5:03:03 PM

biddwiser said:
You take the screws off the back and then take the side off the base unit. You attach the new graphics card at the top of the rear of the base unit where it fits. However, you need to modify the graphics card first using the extra plate and screws that are supplied with the card, otherwise it's too big and sticks out too far!

It's really easy - well it was in my case! If you have any other questions please ask - I'd be glad to help!


Do you have to do anything with the integrated graphics? Ie when your turn it on does it automatically choose the additional card?

Cheers
March 5, 2010 6:37:19 PM

Before you install the new card (or afterwards, it probably doesn't matter) you just have to go into the control panel and turn off the Nvidia intergrated card. Your screen will go a bit funny (text will be much bigger) but you can still operate the PC. When the new card is in you then install the software for it, and then select the new card from the control panel or the software, depending on the specific card you get.

For me it was really that straightforward, but it might depend on which one you buy.

Nick
April 2, 2010 2:49:05 PM

wa1 said:
Your case is mini-tower, right?
So u are on the right track searching for a low profile card that can fit on your case... :) 
But your PSU is really low, if u want to upgrade the card then u absolutely must upgrade your PSU too. But make sure it will fit on your case.



Where will i find such a small PSU for the acer aspire x3200.... I'm needing a 400+ as Ive just got a new graphics card: ASUS EAH4650 512mb
a c 271 U Graphics card
September 25, 2011 8:55:57 AM

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