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8500gt upgrade 300w

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October 10, 2011 2:39:19 AM

Hello. I used to be good at shopping for video cards, but I've been out of the game for a while & so now need some help.

I have an HP a6250z with a 300W power supply. It has only one PCI Express X16 slot (I assume v1.0, not 2.0). I currently have an Asus Nvidia Geforce 8500gt installed in that slot.

I would like to upgrade but really do not want to spend more than $75-$100 & have no intention of replacing the power supply. Just looking for something that is minimally an 8800gt so that I can meet the minimum specs for Elder Scrolls V (Skyrim) coming out soon. Better is fine too as long as it is in budget.

I appreciate any ideas that folks have. Thanks!

More about : 8500gt upgrade 300w

a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 10, 2011 3:00:38 AM

with your budget and PSU
I would recommend a HD 6670 GDDR5 version
make sure to get the GDDR5
something like this one is good
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
comes with free game
also others by Asus and MSI are nice

will be fine for minimum to medium specs
actually I have a HD 5670
very similar in performance
and it will play Crysis 2 DX9 1920x1080 Hardcore
also play Metro 2033 DX 10 1920x1080 high settings

the HD 6670 is about 10-20 percent faster than the HD 5670 I have
so you will be good for medium setting gaming up to 1920x1080

also 300w is fine for HD 6670
it doesnt need an external PCIe power connector
it can only draw 75w max (limit of PCIe slot)

one issue is the PCIe V1.0 slot
I have a 1.0 slot and the HD 5670 2.1 worked fine
but there are sometimes issues with 2.1 cards in some 1.0 slots
so make sure to save your box receipt and packaging just in case
also make sure to update to the latest BIOS through HP

otherwise you would have to look for a 2.0 card
in which case I would suggest the GT 240 GDDR5
slightly slower than the HD 6670 but a solid medium level card
though I am not sure of PSU requirements though I know it is a low powered card
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a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2011 3:10:47 AM

^+1

You want a Radeon 5670 or 6670 DDR5.

The 5670 is a good deal faster than a GT 240, with an 8800 Ultra about halfway between them. I'd be inclined to chose the 5670 over the 6670 because the performance difference (~15%) doesn't justify the 33% increase in price ($60 to $80).
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a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2011 3:23:50 AM

Keep in mind that the game is meant to be played on medium settings or higher, so don't expect too much.

If that machine is running an Athlon x2 4600+ like I think it is, you may want to look into upgrading sometime soon. That CPU will limit you in games as well as the graphics card. Especially if you have a Micro Center nearby, upgrading might be a lot cheaper than you think. $250 will buy you a new CPU w/ free motherboard, $100 Windows 7, 4GB of RAM, and a Corsair CX430 power supply. $22 more and you can get a new case too.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 10, 2011 4:08:12 AM

for elder scrolls , I'd look up getting a new system, and wait a while until the new lineup of cards from AMD/nvidia come out in Q1 2012.
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a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2011 4:36:21 AM

I agree that for Oblivion, you needed a pretty powerful system--such as the one you have now back in 2006. For Skyrim, you'll want more than your current system can offer.

I have trouble saying any upgrade for your current system is a good buy.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 10, 2011 4:43:35 AM

Quote:
I have trouble saying any upgrade for your current system is a good buy.
+5 :) 

like that ski avatar - *offtopic* miss that game.
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a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2011 5:37:06 AM

Lutfij said:
Quote:
your current system is a good buy.
+5 :)  like that ski avatar - *offtopic* miss that game.
Your comment just wasted about 15 minutes for me at work after I downloaded Ski Free and decided to download Jezzball too. Jezzball is a dangerous game...oddly similar to Civilization in terms of how much time can be spent playing it.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 10, 2011 6:08:46 AM

:lol:  [:rofl: ] sorry bro :p 
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October 10, 2011 1:07:58 PM

dalauder said:
I agree that for Oblivion, you needed a pretty powerful system--such as the one you have now back in 2006. For Skyrim, you'll want more than your current system can offer.

I have trouble saying any upgrade for your current system is a good buy.


Thank you both -- I greatly appreciate the input. I am somewhat torn between the two opinions. You are both probably right in that ultimately an upgarde would be a better choice. I unfortunately do not live remotely close to a Micro Center, so I don't know where I would go to get the kinds of upgrades that you both suggest. Although I can change out memory and video cards, I am less hesitant to attempt a motherboard upgrade on my own. Do you have other suggestions besides a Micro Center as to where I might be able to have this done relatively cheaply?
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 10, 2011 3:18:46 PM

cheap is not the right term to use in your case. as getting anything to pop into your system would add up and cost more

1| you want a new GPU - check
2| you'll need a new psu to power that GPU - check
3| you might experience an issue with your PCI-E slot if its 1.0a (or b i think) and won't detect the GPU - check. if its 1.1 then your ok
4| you'll then experince a bottleneck with your cpu - check so you'll want a higher end CPU

is this your system?

point from all these;
1|don't buy office machines to power your entertainment needs - they are advertised for entertainment but leave out the fine details
2| you're looking dead in the eye for a new system altogther.

3| open a thread here at tom's asking for build suggestions and you're making headway :) 

oh
[:isamuelson:6]
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a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2011 5:55:57 PM

Lol, skyrim is made for the 360. And the 8800gt compares to the 360's GPU. I think he'll be fine with what he has. If he's planning on upgrading then the 6670 should be fine.
Have fun gaming :p 
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a b U Graphics card
October 10, 2011 10:11:47 PM

Djentleman said:
Lol, skyrim is made for the 360. And the 8800gt compares to the 360's GPU. I think he'll be fine with what he has. If he's planning on upgrading then the 6670 should be fine.
Have fun gaming :p 
Are you honestly comparing graphics on a 360 to a PC?

If that's all your going for OP, then buy a 5670, play the game on low settings at 1280x720 and you can have a game that looks like garbage just like ALL PS3 and 360 games.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 10, 2011 10:30:46 PM

dalauder said:
Are you honestly comparing graphics on a 360 to a PC?

If that's all your going for OP, then buy a 5670, play the game on low settings at 1280x720 and you can have a game that looks like garbage just like ALL PS3 and 360 games.

okay i tried to stay out of this last comment with the *360* - but i couldn't help it :lol: 

@ OP - we have tried our best at settling the issue - and :lol:  consoles don't even see half what we see on a desktop with a dedicated card :lol:  let alone controlling a character (total fail when it comes to FPS') :lol: 
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October 11, 2011 1:42:07 AM

Ok guys. So forgetting about the whole 360 comparison for a moment, I am okay with running skyrim on medium settings (does not have to be max - but want to do better than minimum). I have seen suggestions for ATI 5670 (gddr5), ATI 6670 (gddr5), a partial upgrade, and a new system -- all in this single thread.

Seems like the majority of posts are putting a partial upgrade as a waste of money, so I either go cheap with just the video card or get a whole new tower. For the new system, I would need over $500 which is not in my budget right now unless I wait for Santa Claus later this year. Maybe that is the best option in the long run, but consider this.

I have been reading reviews for the ATI 5670 and 6670, and whether it can run on a 300w power supply is questionable (some say yes because it only consumes 75w, and some say no because it depends on what else is in your system). So I have done some research. If I were to get an upgraded card for my system given the above specs, it would probably be an Asus EAH6670, 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1. This runs $90 on Newegg after rebate. But then I see one of the posts about my system not being able to handle that card because of the processor, which is in fact Dual Core AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ 2.6 GHz, or because of the single PCI Express X16 slot which is v1.0 and might not be compatible with a 2.1 card.

Do you guys think this card would work given my specs? Or do I wait until Christmas, hope for a new system, and delay my Skyrim joy for over a month?
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 11, 2011 1:48:54 AM

christmas - solves all your problems ,present and future ,with one long sweeping broom :) 
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2011 1:54:37 AM

The 5670 and 6670 can pretty much both run in any system. they're pretty much designed specifically for OEM systems like yours that can't handle a power hungry card.


$500 for a new build? Nah...you can get a major upgrade for MUCH cheaper. All my prices are pretty accurate to Newegg.com stuff and include shipping...

CPU: $189 for i3-2100/H61 combo
This will get even cheaper after Bulldozer comes out this week.

Mobo: Find in a combo above

RAM: $22 4GB 1600CL9 after $10 rebate kit somewhere on Newegg

PSU: $20 Corsair CX430 after $20 rebate--wait for a sale. Sign up for Newegg's email list

Case: $20 The cheapest thing you can find or reuse your old case. Slickdeals.net had some nice ones on sale for $18 w/ shipping last week. Keep your eyes peeled for deals here.

DVD: Free if you use your old one, $18 if you don't.

HDD: Use your old one, buy a Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB when you get the cash.

Windows: Free if you already have a copy, $30 if you're a student, $100 if you're not and don't find a sale.

TOTAL: $251 w/o Windows

Then add in a graphics card. I'd recommend you wait until Black Friday and get a 6870 on sale for $130 or so. I've seen them for $145 after rebate.

Here's a testament to the i3-2100's gaming prowess: http://www.anandtech.com/show/4083/the-sandy-bridge-rev...

EDIT: Looks like there's no more i3/cheap mobo combos. So I guess you'd go with one of the i3/RAM combos?
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2011 2:01:30 AM

Here, this mobo will do: $53 ASRock H61M-VS http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EDIT: Of course, if you or a very good friend, can find yourself near a Micro Center in the next couple months, you can save yourself $75 by picking up a Phenom II and free motherboard there and put that $75 into graphics and get a GTX 560 Ti and max out Skyrim.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 11, 2011 2:46:55 AM

specs for Skyrim
http://www.systemrequirements.in/system-requirements-fo...

8800gt minimal
GTX 460 or HD 6850 recommended

core2 duo 2.0 or a Athlon x 2 2.0 minimal
quad 3.0 recommended


so even right now you could run low settings
with a HD 6670 you should be able to do medium to high


But the factor is whether your PCIe 1.0 slot will support the HD 6670 2.1

my HD 5670 2.1 works in my 1.0a slot

it really depends on your chipset whether it will run 2.1 cards

Do you know what you chipset is?



with that said

If Christmas will possibly bring you new system
then the $100 you have now could be used for more worthwile
upgrade on new system

try running Skyrim at 1280x1024 low settings on your system now
it does meet minimum setting requirements
it is only a DX9 game

DX9 is much easier to run than DX11
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2011 3:14:04 AM

@king smp--He has an 8500 GT. Min spec is 8800 GT, which is 7x more powerful (112 CUDA cores vs 16). A 6670 is about 1.5x as powerful as that--so it DEFINITELY won't do high--especially if you consider it's only about half as powerful as the 6850 they recommend. And recommended specs are usually for medium settings.

I doubt a 6670 can do medium based off of Oblivion not even maxing out on my GTS 250, which is 70% as good as a 6670. Elder Scrolls are notoriously graphically intensive for RPGs.

Also, the Athlon x2 will limit your fps dramatically. That CPU alone will cause you to struggle to maintain the 30fps playability threshold.
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October 11, 2011 3:35:47 AM

Chipset per HP website is GeForce 6150SE nForce 430. Is there anything a step up from 6670 that still consumes the same level of power? Is the Asus EAH6670, 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 a card that would work given my chipset?

As far as the processor, I know it will bottleneck, but it does meet Skyrim minimum standard. Video card doesn't, which is why I started there.

My quick research says that the 6870 wouldn't run given my PC specs -- I would need more power for that. So I am thinking more and more it is either 6670 GDDR5 or wait until Christmas & hope. Even a partial upgrade, including a video card, will run me close to $350, and I just don't have that budget right now.
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2011 3:56:15 AM

It is a fact that the 6670 is the fastest card that doesn't need a 6-pin connector, followed by the 5670 closely with the GT 240 a ways off.

The Asus you mentioned is a 6670 and I can't tell you for sure whether it'll work. Everything is SUPPOSED to be backwards compatible.

If I were you, I'd start with a PSU upgrade if your computer has a normal ATX or mATX case.. You'll be able to take that with you. Then you'll have the freedom to get whatever graphics card you want and take that with you to an upgrade. Note that you'll be CPU bottlenecked, not GPU bottlenecked with anything stronger than a 5670.
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2011 4:17:24 AM

You've been giving us info about your chipset, but I don't recall you telling us your motherboard model number. Can you open up your case and tell us if it's the ASUS: M2N68-LA shown on this page?: http://bizsupport1.austin.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport...

I'd be pretty surprised if your motherboard can't take a new graphics card. But I won't go as far as to guarantee it will.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 11, 2011 6:26:17 AM

from looking up the chipset I think the 2.1 card will work
but no guarantees

my mistake thinking you had a 8800

my HD 5670 ran elder scrolls at all high settings

it can run Crysis 2 DX9 at 1920x1080 HARDCORE settings

and a HD 6670 is a little faster

and I doubt that Skyrim will be more demanding than Crysis 2......


here is Crysis 2 Hardcore 1920x1080 on HD 5670
which is similar to HD 6670 (6670 is about 20 percent faster)

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheSpooky777?feature=mhee#p...
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2011 7:02:25 AM

I'm skeptical of that Crysis 2 @ 1080p on HARDCORE claim. Did you have AA on? What FPS did it run at? Because I've played Crysis 2 on a GeForce 7950 GT--but I'd NEVER recommend the performance I got. Then again, you never said it was the new Ultra setting.

Skyrim may be more poorly optimized than Crysis 2--based of off Oblivion and Morrowind requirements @ launch.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 11, 2011 7:48:26 AM

No AA

just watch the video if you doubt me

that is Hardcore setting DX9

I never said it could run at DX11

it does play Metro 2033 1280x1024 DX11 Very High setting
here is proof

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6B13Sk0VjJk


that is why I made these videos to prove what a HD 5670 can do :) 
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October 11, 2011 7:53:23 PM

Ok guys -- Here's where I think I am landing -- I will probably end up buying an HD 5670 card. I have switched my focus from the Asus card to an XFX (model number HD567XZNF3). Based on tech specs, that appears to be my best buy.

I'll then give Skyrim a shot once I get it. Asusming that the video card is compatible (I know, no guarantees), then I can postpone a larger-scale upgrade for a bit. If no-go, then I will need to find some time to get a partial upgrade done, which will be cheaper than a new system.

I can't wait until Christmas. I can't leave Skyrim sitting on my desk in its box for that long.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 11, 2011 8:08:20 PM

Let me know if you need help with the HD 5670 (I own one)
Just PM me by clicking on my Avatar picture
You will be pleasantly surprised by the HD 5670 hopefully
It plays games better than alot of so called "expert" users
give it credit
Every DX9 game I have it plays at highest settings easily
it is only DX11 that pushes it hard

also make sure to check into doing a BIOS upgrade before installing card
PM me if you need help doing it
Good luck and good gaming :) 
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a b U Graphics card
October 11, 2011 10:55:44 PM

I'd still say to save your $75 and do a full rebuild later. But I guess you can just buy the 5670 and sell it for $45 in three months.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 12, 2011 3:09:45 AM

Good choice
If the HD 6670 was available as a low profile card
I would of bought it instead of the HD 5670

Oh well
Lets hope for a 7670 low profile
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 12, 2011 3:17:18 AM

dalauder said:
I'd still say to save your $75 and do a full rebuild later. But I guess you can just buy the 5670 and sell it for $45 in three months.

+ 2 :)  for the system rebuilding. selling, well lets see how far you can sell it.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
October 12, 2011 4:29:04 AM

There is nothing wrong with a decent cheap temporary upgrade
until you do a new build

a HD 6670 is a new card so will still have some value used
or could be used in a second system later on
it is a great HTPC card with light duty gaming abilities

Me personally my system was designed for office/mulitmedia
with some lower to medium setting gaming
so for me the HD 5670/6670 class of video card was perfect for me

For the money they are great cards
They serve their purpose of being cheap,reasonably playable and very compatible especially with OEM systems

I do know I plan to try to snag a GTX 460 1gb while they are still around for my next build
just because price vs performance (bang for buck) they cant be beat right now
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October 19, 2011 1:13:03 AM

Well, I was able to connect my new 6670 without a hitch. Motherboard appears to have taken it fine. I'll preliminarily test it with Gothic 3 until Skyrim comes out in mid-November. Thanks to everyone for your assistance!
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!