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Graphics card upgrade question?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 13, 2012 1:16:27 PM

Hi, my current system is:
- 250 GB Hard drive
- 2 GB DDR2 RAM
- X1300 PRO 256mb graphics card
- G33M02 Motherboard
- Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor E4300
- Vista 32bit
- 300 Watt PSU
- And a MiniTower base unit

I currently play games such as: Guild Wars, CS:S, TF2 etc. However, after upgrading my monitor to support a 1920x1080 resolution the frames per second suffer in these games. I'm guessing I need a more powerful graphics card to handle this. Obviously my PSU is restricting me to low end cards, although so long as I can get decent frames in medium settings I'm not fussed. I was thinking of buying the ATI HD 4350 or ATI HD 4550 as both only need a 300 Watt PSU. Although I'm unsure whether these would be a worthwhile upgrade? Also, could you recommend any other graphics cards that would be suitable? Thanks :) 
a b U Graphics card
May 13, 2012 1:39:37 PM

Budget? HD 6570 will probably go fine with those specs.
May 13, 2012 1:50:24 PM

auntarie said:
Budget? HD 6570 will probably go fine with those specs.


The HD 6570 would be nice to have, but on AMD's website they state a 400 Watt PSU recommended. So are you sure I could run it? My budget would be around £30 max.
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a c 181 U Graphics card
May 14, 2012 2:00:10 AM

Just because the AMD web site tells you that you need a 400w PSU does not hold true all the time. What really matters is the amps on the 12v rail that count. I saw in a dell PC.

The guy had only a 250w PSU and the card he wanted to run took a 450w PSU recommended and because he had enough amps on his 12v rail was able to run the card.

But I would not get the 6570. I would get the 6670 lowprofile card and if you could tell me the amps on your 12v rail then I will be able to tell you if it will work or not.

You will have to open up your case look on your PSU for the sticker and look for the numbers that look like this. 3.3v = 13a + 5.v = 17a + 12v = 15a If you could right down all those numbers.

Or you can just tell me what the 12v one amps are. Now some PSU's come with two 12v rails and they will look like this 12vA 12vB or 12v1 12v2. So get back to me on that.

How ever I will link you to the card and a very good PSU if you have to go that route. Good luck.

HD 6670 low profile
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

430w PSU $24.99 after rebate. $44.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
May 14, 2012 2:42:24 PM

DM186 said:
Just because the AMD web site tells you that you need a 400w PSU does not hold true all the time. What really matters is the amps on the 12v rail that count. I saw in a dell PC.

The guy had only a 250w PSU and the card he wanted to run took a 450w PSU recommended and because he had enough amps on his 12v rail was able to run the card.

But I would not get the 6570. I would get the 6670 lowprofile card and if you could tell me the amps on your 12v rail then I will be able to tell you if it will work or not.

You will have to open up your case look on your PSU for the sticker and look for the numbers that look like this. 3.3v = 13a + 5.v = 17a + 12v = 15a If you could right down all those numbers.

Or you can just tell me what the 12v one amps are. Now some PSU's come with two 12v rails and they will look like this 12vA 12vB or 12v1 12v2. So get back to me on that.

How ever I will link you to the card and a very good PSU if you have to go that route. Good luck.

HD 6670 low profile
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

430w PSU $24.99 after rebate. $44.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Hey, thanks for your input. After looking at the cost for both the 6570 and especially the 6670 they both seem quite pricey here in the UK. However, if I can find one cheap enough I would most definitely purchase them over any other cards I have previously mentioned, if I can run them. I took a look at my PSU and found out the rails:
+ 5.0V = 22.0A
+ 3.3V = 17.0A
+ 12.0V = 18.0A
- 12.0V = 0.8A
+ 5.0Vs = 2.0A

I'm not really willing to buy another power supply unit, at the moment purely for the cost of it, but thanks for the suggestion anyway. I noticed the HD 6450 also seem pretty reasonable and quite cheap as well, any opinions on that or an Nvidia alternative? Again, thanks for your help.
a b U Graphics card
May 14, 2012 7:46:33 PM

Your PSU should be able to power a 6570 just fine. The 6450 is a lot cheaper but it's really weak and will do you almost no good for gaming.
a c 181 U Graphics card
May 15, 2012 1:00:17 AM

Polymer11 said:
Hey, thanks for your input. After looking at the cost for both the 6570 and especially the 6670 they both seem quite pricey here in the UK. However, if I can find one cheap enough I would most definitely purchase them over any other cards I have previously mentioned, if I can run them. I took a look at my PSU and found out the rails:
+ 5.0V = 22.0A
+ 3.3V = 17.0A
+ 12.0V = 18.0A
- 12.0V = 0.8A
+ 5.0Vs = 2.0A

I'm not really willing to buy another power supply unit, at the moment purely for the cost of it, but thanks for the suggestion anyway. I noticed the HD 6450 also seem pretty reasonable and quite cheap as well, any opinions on that or an Nvidia alternative? Again, thanks for your help.


Hey thanks Out of all the cards shown your PSU will run anyone of the three cards. You have 216w to play around and I linked you to two different web sites showing how may watts the 6450 will draw on load.

The 6670 draws 58w max load. The 6570 draws 49w max load. So any card you choose is good to go and you don't have to upgrade your PSU. The other fellow auntarie is right that the 6450 is a weak card.

If you are wanting to run 1920x1080 res in the games and have some what decent fram rates and be able to play on med to high settings then you need a good card. But at the end of the day.

You can't afford it then you have to do what you need to do. You will still be able to play the games with the 6450 just at low settings. I don't know what the fps will be but if it is above 20 then you should be ok.

I hope this helps and I wish you good luck unless you need more help in that case I will be here to help.

http://techreport.com/articles.x/20728/6

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/AMD/HD_6450/20.html
May 15, 2012 7:38:41 PM

DM186 said:
Hey thanks Out of all the cards shown your PSU will run anyone of the three cards. You have 216w to play around and I linked you to two different web sites showing how may watts the 6450 will draw on load.

The 6670 draws 58w max load. The 6570 draws 49w max load. So any card you choose is good to go and you don't have to upgrade your PSU. The other fellow auntarie is right that the 6450 is a weak card.

If you are wanting to run 1920x1080 res in the games and have some what decent fram rates and be able to play on med to high settings then you need a good card. But at the end of the day.

You can't afford it then you have to do what you need to do. You will still be able to play the games with the 6450 just at low settings. I don't know what the fps will be but if it is above 20 then you should be ok.

I hope this helps and I wish you good luck unless you need more help in that case I will be here to help.

http://techreport.com/articles.x/20728/6

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/AMD/HD_6450/20.html


Just a last question, if you don't mind. How did you figure out I have 216 Watts to make use of? (Just so I can calculate this in the future if needs be). I shall carry on my search for these graphics cards and perhaps the GT240 which seems quite appealing if I can snag it cheap enough. Again, thanks so much, you've been very helpful.
a c 181 U Graphics card
May 15, 2012 9:47:44 PM

It is simple just take 12v x the amps and what shows up is the watts. In your case it is 12 x 18 = 216. Then you have to reserch your card and find out how much draw on the load side it will draw.

But there is a draw back you also have to figure in what everything else is drawing including the CPU. So you shood figure at least 50% for the card and the rest for everything else.
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