APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: As soon as possible. As in, tonight or tomorrow morning if possible.
BUDGET RANGE: $100 or less, ideally.
USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Mostly WoW gaming and other typical photo/video usage.
CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY: I think it's an Nvidia Geforce 7600GT? It just died, hence the post. Power supply is just the 375W Dell thing that came with the computer.
OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS: Dell XPS 400. I think it's got 2GB memory, but I don't think I can get too much more specific with the specs; Dell isn't terribly forthcoming with certain info.
MONITOR RESOLUTION: Widescreen. 1920x1080, I think.
My wife's video card tanked a couple of days ago. Trying to get this resolved ASAP, as she's in nursing school and needs access to her computer. She's running on an old Dell XPS 400 and I'm having a hard time finding a good card to upgrade to. I'm concerned about PSU requirements and PCI-E 1.0/2.0/2.1 compatibility. I know the 2.0/2.1 are supposed to be backwards compatible, but I've read some reviews that claim otherwise. I'm having a hard time finding a card that I can be reasonably certain will work that isn't discontinued.
A Radeon 4670 or 5670 would match the system, looks like the XPS400s have Pentium D CPUs. If you have a 375 watt power supply, 5670 is good as it's a better card and will work well in future systems, and does not need a separate power connector. Should be under $100 online, the 4670 should be well under 100.
I have the exact same system and I am running a 4850 with absolutly no problems. Im sure the system is bottlenecking the crap out of the card but I got it for $60. Im just giving you an idea of what it can truly handle.
Edit: Nevermind about Best Buy. PNY and Galaxy look like the only brands in store. Probably better to pay next day air.
I for one have the 220gt which i use to play EQ2, Global Agenda, and Left4Dead2 in 1920 x 1080 with very poor framerates[15-27], yet playable. Outside of games it does everything i need it to do. If she doesn't game. I bump the support of purchase any of 4670, 5670, 440, 430. The improved performance per watt on the newer cards is justifiable enough buy the newer cards under $100 bucks with -current- 375 power supply.
BTW, on my xps400 the psu was the first to go. Once I replaced the psu with an antec earthwatts 500, i bought the 220 for $80 bucks. That card is much cheaper now and there are better to be had. Just a friendly anecdote.