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March 28, 2010 8:03:40 PM

Hello, I would like to upgrade the graphics card in my slim computer, but I'm restricted with the size of the case etc.

Basically at the moment my specs are:
AMD Athlon II X3 425 Processor (2.7 GHz)
3.0 GB RAM
Nvidea 9200 graphics card.
220W PSU.

I can run games ok atm but nothing special, so I would like a small upgrade to what I have already.
I know 220W is not alot so I will possible have to upgrade that also.

The full specs for the computer can be found at http://tinyurl.com/ye2xc2s

I don't really have a price range but I'm pretty sure these cards aren't very espensive.

Thanks for your help.

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March 29, 2010 12:40:45 AM

ct1615 said:
http://www.techspot.com/review/245-ati-radeon-hd-5570/p...

techspot has it pulling more and their over all numbers look more accurate


Here is why "- Intel Core i7 965 Extreme Edition (Overclocked @ 3.70GHz)" You have to look at the whole picture since they are measuring total system draw. Even so, its still below his 220W power supply, and I bet that asus mb pulls less than a full x58 board.
March 29, 2010 2:33:42 PM

So, at the moment you've suggested the 4550 and the 5570.. but you dont think my computer would be able to handle the 5570?

Any other opinions or suggestions?
March 29, 2010 3:57:54 PM

your computer will handle the 5570 just fine, total system draw with an overclocked cpu was 210 watts, you have 220 available.
a b U Graphics card
March 29, 2010 4:10:41 PM

The 5450 is another option. It's basically a new version of the 4550 with all the features of the newer 5000-series.

Oddly enough, exactly 1 year ago today, another guy using the same power supply in an Acer Aspire x1700 asked about graphics upgrades for his system.

See here

He installed a 4650 and it worked great. But your PC is different... You have an Athlon II X3 (95W) CPU, he has an E2200 (65W) CPU. The fact that your CPU draws more power than his means you don't have the same amount of breathing room he has for graphics.

That said, you could try a 4650 or 5570, but I'm not sure you have quite enough power for it. I think it will work, but you'll likely be right at the PSU's limit with one of them installed. This will stress the PSU and could lead to potential problems.

The safe bet is either a 4550 or 5450. The risky one is a 4650 or 5570, moreso the 5570 because it has 1GB of DDR3 memory, vs 512MB of DDR2 on the other cards.

It's would be unfortunate to try for the highest-performing card only to see it fail and then have to return it. If only that PSU had another 30 watts of power within it. Then there would be far less concern.
a b U Graphics card
March 29, 2010 4:29:11 PM

noob2222, I beg to differ. It's not a matter of being "just fine." He'll be very close to his PSU's limit.

Using eXtreme Power Supply Calculator, I calculated it out to 208W with a Stock CPU and an HD 4670. The options I chose were:
Regular Desktop
Athlon II X3 425 Rana
90% CPU Usage
2 DDR2 DIMMS
HD 4670
Single card
1 Regular SATA HDD
1 DVD-RW/DVD+RW Drive
Front Bay Card Reader
90% System Load

That doesn't include any additional fans, and quite possibly the aftermarket/custom CPU cooler may exist, as they are often installed in slim-line cases. Add 2 regular 80mm fans and it's 212W. He's really close to the limit. If by any chance either the CPU or video card should hit 100% load, he's over 220W. That's why I recommend caution.
March 29, 2010 4:54:32 PM

1 dvd-rw drive adds 27Watts with that calculator. The system will never be 100% load while burning disks and playaing games. Without seeing his computer, Id bet his MB is a mini atx, reduces the power even more.

180-190 max with that calculator if you remove the dvd drive. Its not a matter of it being there, but running 100% load on every component at the exact same time should never happen. idle drives don't pull power, and i doubt 27w except while burning a disk.

p.s. you have to be careful with the 4650, some are low profile, some are not. The 5450 is an option, but seeing as he does game, its a slow card, I would recommend the 4550 over it for a choice. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-5450,2549...
March 29, 2010 5:33:16 PM

Thanks for your replies, I think it may be best to stay away from the 5570 due to the potential power issues (?). Therefore my other options at the moment are the 4650, 4550 or 5450. Which do you recommend? Remeber I'm looking for a card thats better than my current (Nvidia 9200) but obviously it's not going to be a great card.
March 29, 2010 5:47:08 PM

you listed them in order of performance, 4650>4550>5450. up to you from there. Just like to point out, the 5570 is twice as fast as the 4650, and only draws 5 more watts at peak. Then again, it does cost more.

Also, check the prices on a new PSU. If you decide you want the fastest available, and it does stress your psu, the are as low as $10 for 450W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...
a b U Graphics card
March 29, 2010 6:34:04 PM

5450 and 4550 are identical - 80 SP's in each. 5450 is just the revised 5000-series version.

Performance wise it's 4650 > 5450 = 4550. Yes, the 5570 is the most powerful low-profile / low-power card. There are some low-pro 9600GT and 9800GT's out there, but their power consumption is much higher than ATI options. And despite acceptable power consumption from GT220/240 cards, the 5570 outperforms them both.
March 29, 2010 6:54:41 PM

Ok so noob2222 you think I should go with the 5570, and a new PSU? (BTW - I live in the UK so unless newegg has cheap shipping I probably won't buy from there) and Razberry you think I should go with the 5450 / 4550. Also, I guess its absolutely necessary to uprgade the PSU if I got the 5570?
March 29, 2010 6:57:09 PM

RazberyBandit said:
5450 and 4550 are identical - 80 SP's in each. 5450 is just the revised 5000-series version.



I guess it could be the drivers with the review on toms, but they put the 4550 outperforming the 5450. With the extra $10 for the slower card, the 5450 is not worth it.

perak said:
Ok so noob2222 you think I should go with the 5570, and a new PSU? (BTW - I live in the UK so unless newegg has cheap shipping I probably won't buy from there) and Razberry you think I should go with the 5450 / 4550. Also, I guess its absolutely necessary to uprgade the PSU if I got the 5570?


For the fastest available, yes the 5570 is the clear option, whether or not you will need a new psu, you could buy it, try it as is. If it works, (it should be fine) then your set.

If it reboots when you load a game, then you will need a bigger psu, wich can be purchased at any computer store, or sometimes department stores (some wal-marts here carry psu)

So to sum it up, 5450/4550 would be guaranteed to work but they are only somewhat faster than the 9200, 5570/4650 should work fine, but there is a very slight chance they won't without a new PSU. It boils down to what you are wanting out of it and what your budget is.
March 29, 2010 7:08:27 PM

noob2222 said:
I guess it could be the drivers with the review on toms, but they put the 4550 outperforming the 5450. With the extra $10 for the slower card, the 5450 is not worth it.



For the fastest available, yes the 5570 is the clear option, whether or not you will need a new psu, you could buy it, try it as is. If it works, then your set.

If it reboots when you load a game, then you will need a bigger psu, wich can be purchased at any computer store.

So to sum it up, 5450/4550 would be guaranteed to work but they are only somewhat faster than the 9200, 5570/4650 should work fine, but there is a very slight chance they won't without a new PSU. It boils down to what you are wanting out of it and what your budget is.



Ok, what is the better card? the 5570 or 4650. I think I will buy one of those and if its not working I will upgrade the PSU. I will probably upgrade the PSU afterwards either way.
March 29, 2010 7:12:15 PM

5570 definately
March 29, 2010 7:30:46 PM

noob2222 said:
ya, it will come with an optional mounting bracket to move the top video output to an adjacent slot if you want to keep all 3 outputs, you can see the bracket here

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ImageGallery.aspx?CurImag...



Ok thank you for your help I'll purchase the card soon.
a c 235 U Graphics card
March 29, 2010 8:53:02 PM

there's no difference, get the cheaper one
!