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Upgrading my wee PC - need advice

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  • Graphics Cards
  • World Of Warcraft
  • Graphics
Last response: in Graphics Cards
February 29, 2012 10:38:54 AM

Hi folks, im after some advice on up-grading my humble little PC so that it can play some more demading games - (black ops mainly).

Im using an Acer Aspire X3400: Some basic specs are

AMDAthon II x2 215 2.7 Ghz
3gb Ram
Nvidia geforce 9200 (integrated)
220 watt PSU

If you need to know any more just say.

The only games i really play are WoW and some older C&C, but id like to be able to play cod - black ops basically.
The graphics are fine for Wow, not great but decent enough.

Now the PC is small, and iv seem some advice on moving everthing to a bigger case etc, but id like to keep it as it is, just beef it up abit.

These are the low profile graphics cards ive been looking at, and the psu's should they need more than the 220watt psu i have.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/ASUS-GeForce-PCI-Profile-Bracke...

Or

http://www.soostylish.com/sapphire-11167-04-20r-hd-5570...

and

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/300w-psu-fsp-rackmount-f...

Or

http://www.amazon.co.uk/EZCool-Power-Supply-Small-Facto...

I need advice if these cards will be good enough for what im after and if they will work on the 220 psu or will i need to buy a new one.

If youre linking suggestions please none from the egg site, Im in the UK so they dont deliver here and ive had some problems finding things they sell in the UK, seasonic make good small psu's i think but couldnt find any UK suppliers.

Anyway, cheers for the help.

More about : upgrading wee advice

a b U Graphics card
February 29, 2012 11:12:05 AM

I think the Sapphire is better than the GT430 but any of them should be more than enough for WoW. Not so sure about Black Ops.
About the PSU I can't really help you since I know nothing about them.
You might also wanna get at least 4GB RAM. That seems to be the minimum acceptable amount for today's games
February 29, 2012 4:27:15 PM

Yeah, was going to stick some more ram in, cheap upgrade :) 

Found http://www.game-debate.com/games/index.php?g_id=703&gam... for some info on spec needed to run black ops, GT 430 seems ok, but wasnt sure about the Sapphire HD 5570.

If any one can advise me on the suitability of these & if i'd need a new psu I'd be grateful.
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February 29, 2012 5:28:03 PM

Both the 5570 and gt 430 are adequate enough to run Black Ops theoretically, but the 1gb 5570 will be slightly better than the GT 430; also the 5570 uses about 45 watts full load on the pci-e slot while the 430 runs about 65 watts while on full load. In my opinion, the GT 430 will probably be pushing your stock psu over the edge and potentially kill it. The 5570 on the other hand will probably heat things up, but most likely your psu will live without much problem. If you're still concerned about the wattage, I have done these sorts of things with 200 watt psus and they've done just fine, although getting a bit hot. Moving on to the PSU issue; I'm not familiar with the EZCool brand at all, so I can't really tell you if it would be able to supply the 400 watts it presumably does. You can go ahead and buy it if you're that desperate for a PSU but i prefer to stay away from unknown brands. Any more questions?
a b U Graphics card
February 29, 2012 8:36:38 PM

12345690 said:
Both the 5570 and gt 430 are adequate enough to run Black Ops theoretically, but the 1gb 5570 will be slightly better than the GT 430; also the 5570 uses about 45 watts full load on the pci-e slot while the 430 runs about 65 watts while on full load. In my opinion, the GT 430 will probably be pushing your stock psu over the edge and potentially kill it. The 5570 on the other hand will probably heat things up, but most likely your psu will live without much problem. If you're still concerned about the wattage, I have done these sorts of things with 200 watt psus and they've done just fine, although getting a bit hot. Moving on to the PSU issue; I'm not familiar with the EZCool brand at all, so I can't really tell you if it would be able to supply the 400 watts it presumably does. You can go ahead and buy it if you're that desperate for a PSU but i prefer to stay away from unknown brands. Any more questions?

Despite not being the OP I have a question. Maybe I misunderstood what you said but does having a good PSU mean lower temperatures?
And if so are we talking temperatures inside the case or inside the PSU?
March 1, 2012 4:45:34 AM

Any more questions?

Yes one, i didnt realise there where different 'fitting' for graphics cards, Ive had a look for my motherboard specs, and all i can find is Acer x3400, which doesnt tell my much.

So im wondering what type of card will fit into the slot AGP, PCI or PCI-E slot etc ? Not sure how to find this out.

Oh and im thinking of the GT430, that Sapphire one seems hard to get hold of think it might be discontinued, I found a similar thread http://forums.majorgeeks.com/showthread.php?t=225107, this card seems to work ok without melting.

Akxpckwb - I think if you have a lower wattage psu it has to work harder to keep things running which raises the temperature inside the case, better quality psu's seem to be more efficient so less heat? from what ive read, but i could be wrong.

Oh...and would this help me with what graphics slot i have http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/pc-wizard.html#whatispcw...

edit: i emailed acer to see if they can tell me what graphics slot i have so hopefully they should know.
Thanks for the replies :) 
a b U Graphics card
March 1, 2012 6:30:30 AM

You can know what type of card will fit into the slot by looking at card specs. Both cards will linked are PCIe. Also I think PCIe cards tend to be faster than their counterparts.
To find out which slot you have just check your motherboard specs. Usually they have at least 2 different slots
March 1, 2012 2:28:15 PM

Quote:
Despite not being the OP I have a question. Maybe I misunderstood what you said but does having a good PSU mean lower temperatures?
And if so are we talking temperatures inside the case or inside the PSU?

Any PSU will get hot if you overload it. It depends how much wattage your whole system needs that determines what PSU you need, that's why you have to be careful when pushing your PSU since it could potentially short out and take your system with it. If you're using a 500 watt PSU with a 560ti or something equivalent to that card, you're going to push that PSU to the limit if you have a power hungry system to go along with that card. So the amount of heat the PSU releases depends on how much power your system needs and if it can output the required wattage without shorting or blowing up.

Quote:
i didnt realise there where different 'fitting' for graphics cards, Ive had a look for my motherboard specs, and all i can find is Acer x3400, which doesnt tell my much.

According to your pc specs, you have one PCI slot, and one PCI-E (Express) slot, so the card you want would be a PCI-E slot compatible; also, keep in mind that all PCI-E versions are cross-compatible so a PCI-E 2.0 and a PCI-E 2.1 are compatible, as well as a PCI-E 1.0 slot, it doesn't say what version you have though. If you have a PCI-E 1.0 slot, you're most likely going to have to download a BIOS update to make all 2.0 and 2.1 video cards compatible. Either way, as long as you get a PCI-E card, you're good to go. One more thing, try to get a 1gb ddr3 5570 if you can, it's slightly better than a gt 430. Any more question after this? :D 
March 9, 2012 1:44:06 PM

I bought the 5570 and some new ram, ram works fine, but graphic card not so fine,

When i install the card, the screen says no signal, and when i remove it same thing, i had to take the Bios/cmos? battery out to get the pc to work again.

So im trying to get it to work at the moment but no luck
a b U Graphics card
March 9, 2012 3:36:57 PM

Can you try another card to see if card is faulty or if it's something else?
March 9, 2012 5:37:47 PM

I just have the on baord integrated graphics.

But had some success!

I removed one of the older ram sticks, a 1 gb one, i now have 3 x 2 gb sticks, and it started fine with the new graphics card! :) 

But now it doesnt seen to want to install drivers, tried the cd which it says it installs and then restarts my pc but after restarting it doesnt seem to have installed the drivers, and had a look in device manager but cant see new card :pt1cable:  hmmm
March 9, 2012 5:59:16 PM

Fixed the problem with the driver not installing properly, turns out date and time where the culprit of all things, wouldnt have guessed that in a million years.

Having removed the little 'watch' battery think its for bios/cmos? that reset the time and date so had to change it back to the present day.

Now i just need to try find a low profile bracket that will fit my pc, the ones included in the box dont fit.

But everythings up and running /highfive.

Thanks for your replies akxpckwb :hello: 
a b U Graphics card
March 9, 2012 7:24:42 PM

Maybe you could remove a side panel or something.
Or some slight modding. I had a cousin who kind of broke the side panel on his case so he just made another one out of acrylic(he's good with this stuff) but slightly larger so everything would fit inside.
Or just get a low profile like you said
April 2, 2012 11:26:22 AM

benvolio84 said:
I just have the on baord integrated graphics.

But had some success!

I removed one of the older ram sticks, a 1 gb one, i now have 3 x 2 gb sticks, and it started fine with the new graphics card! :) 

But now it doesnt seen to want to install drivers, tried the cd which it says it installs and then restarts my pc but after restarting it doesnt seem to have installed the drivers, and had a look in device manager but cant see new card :pt1cable:  hmmm





I have the same PC and I bought sapphire HD5570 , can you tell me how you installed yours ? Mine wont even boot up or give me the option to enter bios with the new card , it just sits there humming , like its breathing with a blank screen , thanks =)