Graphics Card Upgrade Advice!

Hello everyone,

I need some advice on upgrading my graphics card. I am by no means super tech savvy, but I do know the basics. There's a few problems though, so here I am to ask for advice from people who know more about this stuff than I do.

At the moment, I have an nvidia GeForce GTS 450. Not exactly top of the line but it gets the job done. The problem is that the memory has become corrupt, to the point that I have to underclock it in order for it to work with certain things. I want to eventually be able to play Diablo 3 with little or no lag once it comes out. I looked at and with my current graphics card and processor it passed the minimum but didn't hit the recommended specs.

So I was thinking, since my graphics card is basically done (underclocking makes certain games stop artifacting), I think it might be a good idea for me to either just put in the $110 or so to replace the card (the warranty is gone for sure), or spend a bit more for an upgrade.

My main concern is that my processor and motherboard are old. They have always been a problem. I have upgraded my RAM and power supply in my computer, along with my graphics card a couple times, but everything else has stayed the same.

It always makes me nervous when getting a new graphics card, because I'm never sure if it will work with my motherboard or processor or if my power supply is good enough to handle it, etc.

My specs are as follows:

Using Vista
Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) 2 CPU 6420 @ 2.13 GHz, 2.13 GHz
Graphics Card: NVidia GeForce GTS 450
Motherboard make: Dell Inc.
Motherboard model: 0CT017 (Microprocessor)
Chipset Model: Intel P965/G965
BIOS info:
Brand Dell Inc.
Version 2.5.0
Date 05/24/2007
Power Supply: 550W

So as you can see, my processor and motherboard are kind of crap. Are there even any upgrades to my video card that will work with them? Any advice on this would be greatly appreciated. For a price range, I was thinking something along the lines of $150-$250, but I'm really not sure what a better graphics card that would work with my desktop would cost.
5 answers Last reply
More about graphics card upgrade advice
  1. HD 6870 :

    That's only if your PSU has 2x Pci-e power connectors. If it only has 1, go with a 6850. Your CPU will probably be a bottleneck (and probably can't be overclocked because it's a Dell pc) so I wouldn't go higher than a 6870.
  2. you should be able to buy a 6770 for about $100 that satisfies your needs.

    it doesn't use more power than the 450 and is about 10% faster.

    your cpu might be too bottleneck to get a much better card.
  3. ^+1
    Any higher card than the HD 6750 and the 6770 and they still might be two high you will get into bottlenecting and you think now your games suck when that happens it really sucks.
  4. thanks for the advice guys, ill do that then. just out of curiosity, what is bottlenecking? is that what happens when your motherboard/processor is too outdated?
  5. its when your cpu can't keep up with your gpu for the gpu to be used effectively

    normally when you get a better gpu you get better performance but when you get get a cpu bottleneck, the more powerful gpu will run almost like the weaker gpu because they are waiting on the cpu when you are gaming.
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