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What Graphics card can I upgrade to?

I am looking to upgrade graphics card and processor if needed for gaming. What would be my best options for mid-high budget? I will be using it for games like Guild Wars 2 and would like to play on at least mid-settings without lag.

Operating System: Windows XP Professional (5.1, Build 2600) Service Pack 3
Processor: AMD Athlon(tm) 64 Processor 3800+, MMX, 3DNow, ~2.4GHz
Memory: 2046MB RAM
Card name: Radeon X1300/X1550 Series
Power Supply: 250watt (Can be upgraded as well.)

Thanks in advance for any help on this topic.

Mark
25 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about what graphics card upgrade
  1. well, your mid-high budget level can be completely different from mine so could you be more specific :D
  2. Please specify your budget in numbers :).
  3. I'd like to spend less then $400-500
  4. Could you also list low budget as well? Like the bare minimal to run the game without lag? Much appreciated.
  5. For that money you can better get an whole new system i think. http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/336294-13-dollar-gaming

    I believe you can only upgrade the cpu to a Athlon 6000 which still is slow to modern standards. BUT, i'm def. no cpu expert so maybe i'm wrong.

    I think for this system a hd 7750 or 6670 are the best. Depending on how good your psu is they could maybe run without changing it.

    Do you know the amps on the +12v rail ?
  6. with others, I do agree that the whole build needs a whole build change. the parts in this build are quite outdated and are almost not reusable.
  7. Best answer
    With that budget, I'd recommend whole system upgrade. You can keep your current DVD drive (if you want to, it's mostly useless nowadays), Hard drive and PC case.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-2310 2.9GHz Quad-Core Processor ($169.98 @ NCIX US)
    Motherboard: ASRock H61M-GE Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($64.99 @ Newegg)
    Memory: Kingston 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($35.67 @ Amazon)
    Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7770 1GB Video Card ($109.99 @ Newegg)
    Power Supply: Antec 450W ATX12V Power Supply ($29.74 @ Amazon)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($90.90 @ Amazon)
    Total: $501.27
    (Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-26 20:03 EDT-0400)

    If you want to play the game decently, you don't really have much choice - your CPU is below the system requirements, and so is your GPU. When you upgrade the CPU, you must upgrade RAM and motherboard as well. Your power supply is too weak as well. As for Windows 7, Windows XP support is being dropped, it's a good time to upgrade!
  8. Would it be detrimental to upgrade piece by piece over time? If not where should I start?
  9. Well, since you never mentioned your motherboard, I am not sure whether you have a PCI-express slot. If you don't have it, then there isn't any other way - you'll have to upgrade everything at once.

    However, if you do have that slot on your motherboard, you can upgrade graphics card and the power supply first (must be upgraded together), and then CPU + Motherboard + Memory later (must be upgraded together as well).

    Remember, operating system upgrade is not needed, but is recommended.
  10. mark4398 said:
    Would it be detrimental to upgrade piece by piece over time? If not where should I start?


    no its fine. theres only one thing you do not need at the moment, and thats the GPU.

    First you need the barebone stuff:

    if your case is sizable enough, you can reuse that
    if your dvd drive is a sata drive, you can reuse that
    same with HDD, though you will need a new OS if you have an OEM one

    First you need the barebone parts besides above

    1. CPU
    2. Mobo
    3. DDR3 Ram

    at this point, you can technically reuse the psu and it will be fine(without any dedicated gpu). once you have enough money you must buy together at the same time:

    4. PSU and GPU


    thats if its a new build

    if its upgrading, then psu and gpu will be chosen depending on your mobo. but dont expect much because yoru cpu is a limiting facto if you reuse the whole build.
  11. "Well, since you never mentioned your motherboard, I am not sure whether you have a PCI-express slot." Good one :whistle:

    Interesting ; two total different ways to upgrade. Not sure which i would choose, i think the gpu/psu.
  12. GreenDutchAlien said:
    "Well, since you never mentioned your motherboard, I am not sure whether you have a PCI-express slot." Good one :whistle:


    Well, his motherboard may easily have AGP slot with that CPU :).


  13. I found this picture online, that is the motherboard I have.
  14. thats a pci-e at the top i would believe, buts its probably pci-e 1.0
  15. Yes, it's a PCI express slot. There are known compatibility issues between AMD 3.0 cards and 1.0 motherboards...

    That means you'd have to get an Nvidia card if you were to upgrade power supply and graphics card first. GTX 560 is a good choice at that budget range.

    Or, you can upgrade motherboard + CPU + memory first, OR you can upgrade everything at once :).
  16. "Yes, it's a PCI express slot. There are known compatibility issues between AMD 3.0 cards and 1.0 motherboards..."

    Damned, thought that wasn't the case anymore with the 3.0, did read that somewhere. :fou: They should have fixed that ! Incompetent b . . . . .

    Why is it that only AMD has this problem ?
  17. Because they changed PCIe 3.0 standard a bit in their cards. Plain 3.0 is compatible with 1.0, however, AMD modified it a bit and now it's not compatible.

    Here's a full article:
    http://www.overclock.net/a/the-final-answer-to-the-controversial-pcie-x16-version-compatibility
  18. So because AMD wants to be able to state that their cards ain't as power-hungry as Nvidia ( one of the most heard pros for AMD ) they screwed the compatibility and therefore giving a lot of consumers ( and me by now ) a big headache and frustration ? Way to go AMD !!! ( if i did understand it right )


    Loooooove Nvidia :love:

    Good article btw, thanks.
  19. Yea, you understood it right :).
  20. Thats really terrible, shame on AMD ! :fou:
  21. Nvidia Geforce GT 430 or GT 440
    Anything higher will be bottlenecked by the single core CPU.
  22. unreal9400 said:
    Nvidia Geforce GT 430 or GT 440
    Anything higher will be bottlenecked by the single core CPU.


    So what? It's not like it will not be a performance increase. And what happens when he upgrades rest of his system? He needs to buy a new card again?
  23. Sunius said:
    So what? It's not like it will not be a performance increase. And what happens when he upgrades rest of his system? He needs to buy a new card again?

    He will see performance increase but not much.
    Buy a good graphic card first unlike what I stated just now and save money for a better PC.
  24. The increase will be tremendous whatever he chooses. Though, if he chooses GT 440 now, he'll have to buy a new graphics card when he upgrades the rest of the system. Seriously, why would he want to do that?

    Buying GTX 560 not only will get him better (or equal, if the bottleneck kicks in) performance compared to GT 440, but it will also guarantee that when he upgrades the rest of his system, he doesn't need to buy a new graphics card again.
  25. Best answer selected by mark4398.
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