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Looking for advice for new GPU for AMD Athlon 64 x2 4800+

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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January 10, 2012 10:55:53 PM

Hi folks,

I was hoping to get a new GPU so I can play the new SWTOR MMO game. Right now I'm at 5-15fps which sucks wicked hard. Hoping to at least bump that up 2-3 fold with just a new GPU, but not sure which card will be compatible. Really pisses me off that we as consumers, even after doing the lengthy research to find out what new GPU we should get that is compatible, only to still have to go about this empirically after we've already spent a lot of money. But that's a soap-box I shall step on another day.

Here are my specs, in brief:

AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 4800+
2gb DDR2 ram
VisionTek Radeon X1550 Series
Antec "Truepower Trip" Model TP3-430, 430W

I am a novice at figuring out how to know which of the new GPU's will be compatible so any help/advice/general direction is greatly appreciated. I also have a limited budget and would like the next video card to be <$100.

Many thanks!

P.S. thanks inzone for letting me know about the abbrev. specs *blush*
a c 253 U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 11:10:12 PM

You posted way too much info , there is no need for that. All we need is the cpu brand and model , ram brand and model and video card brand and model. You could have listed everything just like you did with the psu. Something like this;

AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 4800+
2gb DDR2 ram
VisionTek Radeon X1550 Series
Antec "Truepower Trip" Model TP3-430, 430W



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January 10, 2012 11:20:29 PM

Fixed. Sorry about that!
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a c 253 U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 11:31:53 PM

Good job that looks a lot better.

EVGA 01G-P3-1441-KR GeForce GT 440 1024MB (Fermi) DUAL DVI PCI Express 2.0 x16 Video Card
$79.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This card could be something that will work for your budget and your computer.
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a c 253 U Graphics card
January 10, 2012 11:37:27 PM

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...

This chart gives you a comparison between Nvidia and AMD as to what level each card falls and lists them from best to worse. Generally you want to upgrade two or three levels to make an upgrade worth while. In your case this won't be too hard because you card is down near the bottom.
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January 10, 2012 11:56:37 PM

inzone said:
Good job that looks a lot better.

EVGA 01G-P3-1441-KR GeForce GT 440 1024MB (Fermi) DUAL DVI PCI Express 2.0 x16 Video Card
$79.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This card could be something that will work for your budget and your computer.


Thanks for the advice inzone! I assume my PSU is compatible for that guy? Otherwise I will doublecheck on my own.
Also, is there a good database or anything out there that you can quickly cross-reference mobo compatibility with graphics cards? Or is this just not a problem with the newer PCI-Express? Sorry for the noob ?'s. Plan on learning from this site as much as I can.
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a c 253 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 12:03:01 AM

Since the computer you have has all low end components you really can't go too far with the video card because it will just be bottlenecked by the other components , like the cpu. You also have ddr2 for ram and only 2gb so I don't know how much of a boost you will get with the new card but it will be better than what you currently have.
Are you able to see what motherboard you have , I didn't see that listed or is it a generic one that came with the computer. Is this a complete computer that you purchased or something you built. I f purchased can you list brand and model.
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a c 253 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 12:06:59 AM

When you look at the link for the card , in the details tab the psu requirements are usually listed there and in this case the card that I listed requires a 300w psu. You can also look at that chart I listed and see some cards that you may want to look up.
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a c 191 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 12:09:38 AM

A GT440 is not much of a gaming card. I would suggest a HD5670 or HD6670. That's already powerful enough to begin to be bottlenecked by your CPU, but either would likely make the game very playable.
Restricting my search to only cards with GDDR5 (about a tier higher than one with DDR3), this is the cheapest HD6670 I would buy: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... although I might be a little concerned about fan noise, reviewers were not. Here is one that may be quieter: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Either will run on your PSU. At least one reviewer of these cards mentions getting good results with SW:TOR.
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January 11, 2012 12:09:52 AM

Hey I am using a 5600+ right now.

You can also get a 5770 for your rig. Its less then the $100 and will definitely work better then a 440GT. Anything higher will bottleneck your processor.

I am using a 5750 with my 5600+ and performance is still adequate. Also what motherboard do you have? Most of the old Athlons had PCIE 1.0 slots and a bios upgrade will be needed to use 2.0 card.

Can you let us know? I am on 1440x900...
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January 11, 2012 12:13:23 AM

inzone said:
Since the computer you have has all low end components you really can't go too far with the video card because it will just be bottlenecked by the other components , like the cpu. You also have ddr2 for ram and only 2gb so I don't know how much of a boost you will get with the new card but it will be better than what you currently have.
Are you able to see what motherboard you have , I didn't see that listed or is it a generic one that came with the computer. Is this a complete computer that you purchased or something you built. I f purchased can you list brand and model.


Yes this is a complete pc purchased from HP/compaq. Here is some other info that may or many not be helpful:

Model: HP Pavilion a6030n
OS: Windows Vista Home Premium Ed.
DirectX ver. 11
CPU Core Speed: 2511.7 MHz
Chipset info-
Northbridge NVIDIA MCP61 rev. A3
Southbridge NVIDIA MCP61 rev. A2

Also looks like I have 2 extra RAM slots which I thought about doubling my memory from 2 to 4gb. Or perhaps more if possibly not too much extra money.
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January 11, 2012 12:15:36 AM

Sorry, here is BIOS info:

DMI BIOS
vendor Phoenix Technologies, LTD
version 5.27
date 06/10/2008
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January 11, 2012 12:16:26 AM

There's a missing info that's very important for your video card choice. What resolution do you usually play your games at? This is almost as important as bottlenecking.

For example, If you like playing at 1024x768, then yes the GT440 will suffice. But what if you like to play on (Or your monitor's natural resolution) 720p or 1680x1050 or maybe even higher? You will definitely need a better video card than that........

My general suggestion on certain resolutions.

1024x768 = Radeon 3850

1280x720 = GeForce 540GT / Radeon 4770 / Radeon 3870 / 9600GT

1680x1050 = Radeon 4850 / GeForce 550 Ti / Radeon 5770 / Radeon 6770 / GeForce 8800GT
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a c 191 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 12:18:45 AM

If you absolutely need to stay as cheap as possible, get this HD5570: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Edit: Unfortunately, none of the cards that Stridervm mentioned will run safely on your 300W PSU. Thinking about that, even the HD6670 might be pushing it a little. The HD5570 would probably be your safest choice without a PSU upgrade.
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January 11, 2012 12:24:46 AM

Hey stridervm, thanks for input!

Right now I am playing at 1024x768 which is fine, I don't mind it. Its also my monitor's native res. Would love to go higher, but again my budget is pretty limited. At the same time, I don't care if I bottleneck, so long as I can get the most out of a cheap card. Unless you think that is just generally a bad idea...
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January 11, 2012 12:26:47 AM

Onus said:
If you absolutely need to stay as cheap as possible, get this HD5570: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Edit: Unfortunately, none of the cards that Stridervm mentioned will run safely on your 300W PSU. Thinking about that, even the HD6670 might be pushing it a little. The HD5570 would probably be your safest choice without a PSU upgrade.


Its a 430W PSU, in case that makes any diff...
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a c 191 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 12:36:34 AM

Ah, missed that about the PSU...looking at the stock 300W. In that case, get the HD6670.
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a b U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 12:58:14 AM

Onus said:
Ah, missed that about the PSU...looking at the stock 300W. In that case, get the HD6670.

+1

Make sure it has GDDR5, too.
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January 11, 2012 1:26:04 AM

Onus said:
Ah, missed that about the PSU...looking at the stock 300W. In that case, get the HD6670.


Well so far, the HD6670 looks very nice and will hopefully give me a couple more years to play off it as well. Couple last questions, though. The card is PCI-E 2.1 - but I can't find a definitive answer as to whether or not that is backwards compatible with my 1.0 ver. Can you show me link to where that is stated? Also, how do I know if this card will be compatible with my mobo or BIOS without learning the hard way?
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January 11, 2012 1:33:48 AM

skulkarax said:
Well so far, the HD6670 looks very nice and will hopefully give me a couple more years to play off it as well. Couple last questions, though. The card is PCI-E 2.1 - but I can't find a definitive answer as to whether or not that is backwards compatible with my 1.0 ver. Can you show me link to where that is stated? Also, how do I know if this card will be compatible with my mobo or BIOS without learning the hard way?

Dude 6750 is more power around same price and is just a great little card.
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a c 191 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 1:43:38 AM

The HD6750 is the stronger card, but if I'm not mistaken, the Antec Truepower Trios were some of the last Antec PSUs to have capacitor problems, especially when run near capacity where they would heat up. If I AM mistaken, the GDDR5 version of the HD6750 would be a nice card indeed, however even the HD6670 might be bottlenecked some by his CPU so I still think that would be the safest card to get.
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January 11, 2012 1:49:11 AM

Onus said:
The HD6750 is the stronger card, but if I'm not mistaken, the Antec Truepower Trios were some of the last Antec PSUs to have capacitor problems, especially when run near capacity where they would heat up. If I AM mistaken, the GDDR5 version of the HD6750 would be a nice card indeed, however even the HD6670 might be bottlenecked some by his CPU so I still think that would be the safest card to get.

Na I ran a 5750 on a 4400+ CPU and it was fine perfect really.
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January 11, 2012 1:50:50 AM

OPs PSU is more than adequate to run a low nay low power low end GPU.
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a c 253 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 1:53:22 AM

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...

I think the card suggestions are getting pretty high and you want to consider the possability of your system not being compatable , if you compare what you have with what is being suggested using the chart you will see that the cards being suggested are near the top of the chart compared to the card you have which is down at the bottom. Having a pci-e nersion 1.0 you will not be taking full advantage of the 2.1 version card. Just something to think about as you look through the cards.
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January 11, 2012 2:00:39 AM

inzone said:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...

I think the card suggestions are getting pretty high and you want to consider the possability of your system not being compatable , if you compare what you have with what is being suggested using the chart you will see that the cards being suggested are near the top of the chart compared to the card you have which is down at the bottom. Having a pci-e nersion 1.0 you will not be taking full advantage of the 2.1 version card. Just something to think about as you look through the cards.

I ran perfectly a 5750 on 4400+ CPU OPs rig is just perfect for any low end GPU 6770 and under.
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January 11, 2012 2:14:02 AM

All good suggestions - thank you everyone! I still can't find out whether my mobo and BIOS are compatible with any of these cards.... any suggestions? I don't want to F myself because of that.
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a c 253 U Graphics card
January 11, 2012 2:21:54 AM

The pci-e slots on your motherboard are version 1.0 and you won't get the full benifit of the cards that are version 2.1 , even though they will run on your board and allow you to play your game you may be wasteing money when you might get the same performance from a lesser card.
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January 11, 2012 2:27:56 AM

skulkarax said:
All good suggestions - thank you everyone! I still can't find out whether my mobo and BIOS are compatible with any of these cards.... any suggestions? I don't want to F myself because of that.

Buy a gard then install is anf while your using it save money for a new mobo and cpu and ddr3 ram.
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January 11, 2012 5:29:31 PM

Best answer selected by Skulkarax.
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