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Adding video card to prebuilt for gaming

Last response: in Systems
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October 16, 2012 5:49:14 PM

I have a family member who wants to add a video card to their system in order to play some games.

The prebuilt system has the following specs:
Core i3 2120 CPU
6GB of RAM
Antec 300w PSU (slight issue)

He wants to play games like Battlefield 3, but doesn't care if he has to run it on medium settings. He also wants to be able to watch blueray videos in better quality than the integrated graphics can provide (although I think he may have a monitor driver issue or something because blueray videos should already play fine on his current setup.)

The only unused power cord coming from the PSU is a standard 4 pin molex.

He wants to keep the cost under $200 and doesn't really want to upgrade the PSU if possible. I'm not sure if that's really doable with a 300w PSU.

Right now the only options I can find are something like a Radeon HD 6670:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=14-150-...

Are any of these low end cards that require no external power even worth getting? I've never used anything below a mid-level card, and certainly not anything that a 300w PSU would suffice. Any ideas here?

If I upgrade the PSU, it opens the doors to many middle tier cards and makes his options much better, but it will be close to keep it under $200 if going that route. Feedback is much appreciated.

Best solution

a c 147 U Graphics card
October 16, 2012 7:49:27 PM

The best card that does not require a PCI-E power connector is the AMD 7750. Below is a link to one with a slight OC and rated well.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Just out of curiosity, what is the power ratings on his PSU, particularly the 12V rail(s). You can always use the molex to PCI-E converter, but you won't want much above a 7750 for that PSU.
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October 16, 2012 8:01:01 PM

jay2tall said:
The best card that does not require a PCI-E power connector is the AMD 7750. Below is a link to one with a slight OC and rated well.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Just out of curiosity, what is the power ratings on his PSU, particularly the 12V rail(s). You can always use the molex to PCI-E converter, but you won't want much above a 7750 for that PSU.


According to newegg, the 7750 requires a minimum of 450w PSU.
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a c 147 U Graphics card
October 16, 2012 8:20:20 PM

z33tec said:
According to newegg, the 7750 requires a minimum of 450w PSU.

Those numbers are inflated a lot of times. The card itself doesn't pull that much. That is total system wattage. Here is a page with a fully equipped Sandybridge-E i7 system and it only pulls 216W at load. It would me much less on a little i3 system. You still want to make sure the power supply has a decent amp rating. Maybe 20A on the 12V rails at least.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5541/amd-radeon-hd-7750-r...
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October 18, 2012 2:02:13 PM

Thanks for the feedback. I'll be going with the XFX 7750. Looks like a great card for low power usage.
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October 18, 2012 2:02:45 PM

Best answer selected by z33tec.
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