Anyone know the best graphics card for my system that will work?

I want to get one of the best video cards for my system. I can afford up to $100-200, but I cannot afford to keep buying ones till I find one that works. Better safe than sorry.

My system... HP Pavilion Media Center
--HP Pavilion m7550n
--AMD Athlon 64x2 5000+ 2.60GHz Dual core processor bi-processor
-- 400gb/go SATA HDD
--4 gigs of ddr2 ram 800mhz
--NVIDIA GeForce 6150 LE graphics card

This system has been altered 3 times.
The motherboard fried out, it was replaced with a Gigayte S-series motherboard. Specifically M61PME-S2p (version 1).
The power supply blew and was replaced by a 400 watt power supply.
I upgraded from 2 gigs of ram to 4 gigs which is at its max.

Also, I also replaced the 16" crt monitor about 1 month ago with a ASUS 23" led monitor (specifically ASUS MS238H).

The system is running vista in 32 bit. I was told that vista can only use 3.3 gigs of ram and for that reason, getting a video card with more than 512megs of ram would be a waste.

I also read that ATI cards do not work with my system, so maybe its best to stick with NVIDIA?

Also, I am quite sure that my motherboard has only a PCIe 1.0 , so I do not know if it will be able to run a PCIe 2.0 card.

Would also prefer to get a card with HDMI as my new monitor has that type of connection.

The current card has no fan, so do not know if my system can run a card with a fan.

Also, you have to pretend I am stupid if anyone cares to offer advice.

Thanks for your time.
4 answers Last reply
More about anyone graphics card system work
  1. So much confused... so little time..

    Here I'll give you a free bump.. I would help you but I don't have time :( sorry
  2. Who ever told you that any thing more than a 512mb card was a dumb ass. I used to use Vista 32 and still keep in another machine two 9800gt 1gb in sli which is the same machine that used to run vista 32. So dump the junk ideas. A GTX 460 or 5830 is the best that you can get while any thing less isn't going to be as fast.
  3. First off, with your 1080p monitor I wouldn't do anything less than a GTX 460 1GB or ATI 5830 level video card if you plan to play at 1920x1080 with modern game titles.

    Second, it's important to realize your existing AMD Athlon X2 5000+ CPU is going to create a bottleneck for you as it's a fairly aged processor. It all depends on what game titles you're playing of course, as not all titles are as demanding on the CPU.

    Your Gigabyte M61PME motherboard appears to be AM2+ compatible, which means you could possibly upgrade to the Phenom II series of processors for a fairly inexpensive upgrade on the CPU.

    What I'm not sure of, is whether the board supports 125W processors, or only 95W.

    Phenom II X4 940 125W $95

    Phenom II X3 715 95W $85

    Here are the specs that I found for your motherboard: GA-M61PME-S3P (rev 1.3) w/ F6 BIOS

    Here is their "CPU Support List"

    Looks like they show the AM2+ Phenom II X4 940 on that list.

    Note: Keep in mind, with a CPU upgrade you may need to look at your power supply more closely. Your Athlon 5000+ is a 65W CPU, where as the newer upgrade options are 95-125W. Plus a newer video card may draw more power too. Can you give us the Brand and Model of your power supply?
  4. IMicro hpc PS-IM400WH

    Ok thanks for the feedback. I am not looking for a major cpu and such. Just want to extend the life of my system for a year or two. Don't play the latest games. Also those cards worry me if they will work on my steup. Two fans draw a lot of power. Want the 1080p, but is there something just one notch below those two cards you listed. Also, the one card is 2.1 pcie which i do not believe will work on my pcie 1.0.

    Again thanks for your time.
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