Graphics card help for my m4a78gtd-v evo and phenom ii x2 550

Hi,
I recently posted on the "Motherboards" forum on my issue and now I want to ask the community if a graphics card would help.

System : The mobo / proc combination is as above, running 4 GB Corsair, Ubuntu 11.10. Not sure of my power supply :(

Problem : Playing minecraft along with recording gameplay causes the game to lag atrociously, so much so that it is unplayable.

First level try : I tried unlocking the 2 cores of my phenom x2. While that worked I did not get any better performance which was very disappointing

General suggestions is that increasing RAM would not help me much. Now I am trying to figure out if my problem can see the light of the day if I get a dedicated GPU. I know my mobo has the PCI slot but I still need to check my power supply specs.

What I do need is the suggestion as to what card to go for - I dont want to go overboard but am seeking a mid range card that can solve my issue above. Also will it solve the issue at all. I might be wrong in gong forward with this, please let me know that too. Also I asked in that forum if I should try overclocking but my thread has no responses thus far :(

2 cards that I am looking at:
XFX NVidia GeForce GT630 - 2GB DDR3
and
Asus ATi Radeon EAH6670 - 1GB DDR5
I have no clue if 2 GD DDR3 is better than 1 GB DDR5 or stuff like that? I zeroed in on these 2 as they were within budget (slightly over budget to be honest !!!)

So please give me any advice, it would be much appreciated. Also the most important thing for me now is to see if this would actually resolve my issue

Thanks,
Ananth
22 answers Last reply
More about graphics card m4a78gtd phenom
  1. The 6670 is better i believe. The 2G on the 630 is a waist, the card will probably never use more than 1.
  2. Thanks rob.
    But will it solve my issue. I dont want to spend 6k (INR) and then end up facing the same lags. Do you have any other alternatives - like overclocking (after my disappointing results with core unlocking :( )
    Just need an overall advice on the path I am taking

    Thanks,
    Ananth
  3. The 6670 is better than the GT630 hands down.
  4. Afraid i don't know much about that. Specially not minecraft, i think i remember that minecraft was a cpu demanding game but i can be totally wrong.

    your cpu is slow, i did find that.

    So because you don't have a big budget and because the cpu would hold back a faster card anyway the 6670 would be the best way to go i think. Assuming you run the integrated video now the 6670 would be a big upgrade anyway.

    Do you know btw which pci-e version you have, 1.0, 2.0 ?

    Also we do need to know what psu you have.
  5. Thanks demo13
    @rob
    From my mobo specs I have the foll expansion slots:
    2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (blue @ x16 mode,gray @ x4 mode)
    1 x PCIe x1
    3 x PCI
    As for the psu - I got to open it up and check it but I think I would be at 400 or 500.

    Minecrat is a cpu intensive game. I really want to know if overclocking would help given that I have 4 cores. But when I did do a stress test with mprime my machine shut down in 25 seconds because of the temp reaching 60+ degress :D.

    Supposing the budget were a little higher, would you recommend another CPU? Would that be your reco? Also do you agree with the fact that more RAM would not help?

    Thanks for your patient replies :)
  6. Oc'ing the cpu might be possible i don't know but you'll need to buy a better cooler than the one you have now. ( so, more money . . . )

    Pci slot is fine than.

    400-500W should be enough.

    Upgrading cpu ? I dunno, no mobo expert. :(

    Maybe Deemo13 ?
  7. Well, thanks robjordy.

    I am hoping that someone would be able to give me a wholesome direction to go in, am a little stumped right now :(
  8. Well, if we keep replying, the thread will stay on top so somebody will react sooner or later . . . i hope.

    Or is that "bumping" ? Naaaaah. :lol:
  9. Fingers crossed but it is 1:30 AM in India now, dont know how long I can keep my eyes peeled on the monitor :D
  10. Hi there,

    Doing a quick google, I can't find your specific motherboard, only this one M4A88T-V EVO/USB3 here

    http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_AM3/M4A88TV_EVOUSB3/#overview

    could this be your one?

    Looking at the specs, it seems there's an obvious upgrade path processor wise, but you would need to find something of value. Saying that you could potentially drop in a Phenom 2 X4, which isn't half bad. Not nearly as good as even the the mid-range gaming cpu's from intel. But at least something. But then you possibly have to consider a new psu etc too!

    On your existing cpu, well, those chips that can be unlocked, have the cores locked for a reason.....they don't pass binning test by the manufacturer and are curtailed and sold as 2 core or 3 or whatever, and at a lower price point, so as to recoup some money. Although you may be able to unlock them, overclocking them is gonna be hard, because they won't be stable with the additional cores unlocked. Also the temps would be crazy, and require better cooling. So failing in prime is almost a given. Maybe a bump in core voltage would make the four cores more stable, but then temps can shoot up. You could try oc'ing your proc with the two cores running, but your cpu is always gonna drag you down when gaming.

    Agree with everyone else on the gfx, 6670 is better :)
  11. Can you tell me which phenom ii x2 you have? Specifically, is it a Black Edition? If your processor is not a Black Edition you are going to have a rough time getting much more out of the processor.

    As far as your mobo goes, its an AM3 socket, so if you could upgrade to a Phenom ii x4 965 BE, that would be 1000x better than what you have right now. I did not see mention of your specific budget, but that processor runs $110 USD right now.

    And you are right, minecraft is a very CPU heavy game, and when you add in the fact that video recording is also very CPU heavy, its just way too much for that processor of yours. The processor I suggested will have no problem handling both of those at the same time.
  12. @keith12
    The link is at
    http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_AM3/M4A785TDV_EVO/#MSL
    But from all that you are saying I gather that the mobo / cpu is what is bringing me down and replacing them is what would give me the performance right?
    What is your take on a new dedicate GPU, would that help? I am assuming here that you too are not recommending the RAM upgrade.
    If I were to get a better cooling unit then I assume that the 4 cores will work. My point is that while playing the game, with the 4 cores engaged, why dont I see even a marginal improvement in performance. That seems to suggest that even if I do get a better cooling unit, performance may not be enhanced with all cores running right?

    @dalmvern
    It is the phenom ii x2 550 Black Edition (I cant even find the link for this in the amd site LOL!!!)
    Cool - so you too are going the new CPU Way. I understand.

    So is your take that a dedicated GPU is not going to help in any way. More RAM?

    Thanks guys, I feel like I am getting somewhere, I will stay awake :D
  13. No, a discreet graphics card will definitely help a bit, but the real problem that you are having is with your processor. So since your processor is a black edition, do you have any experience overclocking?

    Do you have a monitoring program where you can see your system resources usage, something like AllCPU Meter? If you are capping out your RAM, or even using over 75% of it, it could be beneficial to add another 4 GB.
  14. @dalmvern
    I have no clue about oc'ing. I did post another thread over at the motherboards forum but I am yet to get a single response. I do need guidance for overclocking.

    I got all possible monitoring programs installed on my ubuntu. Gkrell, lm-sensors etc. While playing and recording I do use quite a bit of RAM but I never cap out - I do run mc on fairly low setting in terms of CPU allotted (via java's runtime parameters) and its video settings. But from all the suggestions I get it did seem to suggest that adding more RAM would not be of much use.
    It would be great if you can take a look at that other thread - I have stated all my unlocking cores etc out there
    http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/319264-30-overclocking-advice-asus-m4a785td-phenom#t2132399

    Thanks :)
  15. Go with the 6670.

    That is the card you want, believe me. Don't feel like writing out a bunch of "wholesome reasons", but I'm telling you now that's the one you want for your system.

    Good luck.
  16. Yes sir, PCGamer81, thanks a bunch :)
  17. Yep, and just so you know, the 6670 is the card the new Xbox 720 is going to based around, so already you will be at next-gen console level.

    Pretty cool.
  18. And you dont foresee any issue given that the accompanying mobo and cpu are fairly out of fashio now?
    BTW, I should have the card with me tomorrow :)
    So much costlier to buy off a vendor in India :(
  19. No, there wont be any issues with the card. It is backward compatible with your PCI-E 2.0 slot and the rest is all about the drivers.
  20. cannon_dt said:
    And you dont foresee any issue given that the accompanying mobo and cpu are fairly out of fashio now?
    BTW, I should have the card with me tomorrow :)
    So much costlier to buy off a vendor in India :(

    Oh, and I should probably add that running games in 720p is probably going to be the sweet spot for that card.

    Consoles run at 720p (stretched), so 720p is still more than game-worthy.
  21. :( :( :( :(
    It is with great sadness that I report that nothing has improved with the new Radeon HD 6670. Minecraft still records with full lag. I am devastated
  22. @tourist
    I am a ubuntu user, please see my other post at
    http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/361422-31-advice-performance-home-built-system
    for a full explanation of my problem.
    So I use glc for capture. Also it is ddr5.
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