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Advice to upgrade graphics card for WoW

Last response: in Systems
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November 22, 2010 8:26:34 PM

My iMac was stolen recently and the insurance won't pay a single dime because the deductible was too low. Instead of spending money to replace it, I was thinking instead to add a dedicated graphics card to a recent build from a few weeks ago (which I got help picking the parts here). The graphics upgrade will be in order to play World of Warcraft. Here's their recommended specs:

Windows XP 32bit (SP3), Windows XP 64bit (SP2), Windows Vista 32bit (SP1), Windows Vista 64bit (SP1) Windows 7:

* Dual-core processor, such as the Intel Pentium D or AMD Athlon 64 X2
* 2 GB RAM (2 GB for Vista users)
* 3D graphics processor with Vertex and Pixel Shader capability with 256 MB NVIDIA® GeForce® 8600 or ATI Radeon™
* 2600 or better DirectX-compatible sound card or motherboard sound capability
* Broadband Internet connection
* Multi-button mouse with scroll wheel recommended

What I need to know, based on the parts that are listed below, are two things:

1) Will the power supply and motherboard be able to handle playing video games?
2) How cheap can I go with the graphics card without sacrificing performance?

I want to keep the graphics card price under $100, since once I have enough money for a gaming pc build I would do that.

BIOSTAR TA785G3 AM3 AMD 785G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

AMD Athlon II X3 425 2.7GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Processor ADX425WFK32GI - OEM

Crucial 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model CT2KIT12864BA1339
November 22, 2010 8:34:32 PM

That power supply will work fine. All of your components look ok, but I'd honestly go with a standard processor as opposed to an OEM. It'll cost you a few bucks more, but the warranty and cooler are worth it.

WoW is hardly what you'd call a graphics intensive game. I'd recommend just checking the "best for the money" component articles on the main page. If you're looking for specific suggestions, here's what I'd buy to play WoW:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

90 bucks, free shipping. It'll play WoW @ full settings and whatever resolution you want, and definitely hold you over for other titles as well. I have the 1GB XFX model and it's great.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 22, 2010 8:35:21 PM

Just so you know, oem cpu's do not come with a fan. Also I would switch out that mobo to an asrock 770. For 100 bucks you go for a 4850.
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November 22, 2010 9:09:23 PM

Sorry for the confusion on some of the replies. I built the PC about a month or two ago. All I was looking for was to add a graphics card based on the parts.
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November 22, 2010 9:22:34 PM

the123guy said:
My iMac was stolen recently and the insurance won't pay a single dime because the deductible was too low. Instead of spending money to replace it, I was thinking instead to add a dedicated graphics card to a recent build from a few weeks ago (which I got help picking the parts here). The graphics upgrade will be in order to play World of Warcraft. Here's their recommended specs:

Windows XP 32bit (SP3), Windows XP 64bit (SP2), Windows Vista 32bit (SP1), Windows Vista 64bit (SP1) Windows 7:

* Dual-core processor, such as the Intel Pentium D or AMD Athlon 64 X2
* 2 GB RAM (2 GB for Vista users)
* 3D graphics processor with Vertex and Pixel Shader capability with 256 MB NVIDIA® GeForce® 8600 or ATI Radeon™
* 2600 or better DirectX-compatible sound card or motherboard sound capability
* Broadband Internet connection
* Multi-button mouse with scroll wheel recommended

What I need to know, based on the parts that are listed below, are two things:

1) Will the power supply and motherboard be able to handle playing video games?
2) How cheap can I go with the graphics card without sacrificing performance?

I want to keep the graphics card price under $100, since once I have enough money for a gaming pc build I would do that.

BIOSTAR TA785G3 AM3 AMD 785G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

AMD Athlon II X3 425 2.7GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Processor ADX425WFK32GI - OEM

Crucial 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model CT2KIT12864BA1339


A 380W power supply is likely not sufficient for a GTS 250 or a Radeon HD 4850, which are your two best options at the $100 price point. Both require a 450W PSU.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 22, 2010 9:27:56 PM

ultimabeam said:
A 380W power supply is likely not sufficient for a GTS 250 or a Radeon HD 4850, which are your two best options at the $100 price point. Both require a 450W PSU.



That is very high quality psu though, I think it would suffice. Maybe it will cut it close, if that is the case then maybe go with a 5670.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 22, 2010 9:32:20 PM

What's the resolution on your monitor? That is also going to make a difference on the suggestions that people give you.
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Best solution

a b B Homebuilt system
November 22, 2010 10:04:54 PM

the123guy said:
The monitor resolution is 1600x900

This one looks like it'll do the job (plus the price is very nice)
GIGABYTE GV-R435OC-512I Radeon HD 4350 512MB 64-bit GDDR2 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Low Profile Ready Video Card


I would take a look at Tom's Hardware Best Graphics Cards under $100, Nov. 2010. The 4350 is a weak card that is now 2 generations old. I'd strongly consider the 5670 if you can swing the $80 or so for it. AMD's system requirements list 400W, which should be fine with your very solid 380W EarthWatts.

This Sapphire 5670 is $80 and has a $15 MIR, bringing it down to $65 if you are willing to send in the MIR.
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November 22, 2010 10:15:21 PM

Best answer selected by the123guy.
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a c 169 U Graphics card
a b Ý World of Warcraft
November 23, 2010 5:51:27 AM

This topic has been closed by Maziar
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