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Looking for a Graphics Card

Hello all,

A quick question. I am looking to upgrade the graphics on my machine, but I need some guidance as to what will work/what won't.

My machine is a hodgepodge deal. I built it out of an old tower DC server...dual Dempsey Xeons, Supermicro X7DVL-E MB with 5000v chipset that I stuck in an ancient AMD gaming rig tower. I'm even using one of the HDD's out of the RAID array. The only thing I added to it was a sound card.

Right now it's got an integrated graphics chip, I think it's the ATi ES1000 with a whopping 16 MB memory. My RAM on the server board is only 1GB (FB, registered ECC of course).
The board has both PCI-E 4x and 8x (the short slots) and 2 PCI-X 133 MHz slots. There are also 2 PCI 33 MHz slots, one has a sound card in it. I want to stay away from the PCI, and I know the PCI-X is about useless for anything other than RAID/storage controllers, fiber channel, or some kind of networking hardware, so my best bets are the PCI-E.

The onboard is good for the monitor, but when I do something like Netflix or other graphics chore like Flash content, it sucks. I am looking for a basic, modern card with at least 512 MB and around 500 MHz clock speed.

There are a lot of PCI-E cards out there for cheap (I don't want anything fancy as I don't play games) I just don't know which will work.

Any suggestions?'

Thanks!
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  1. You didn't post your budget, and I just reread what I posted. I don't really know much of a PCI-E but I'll look. I couldn't find anything, if I were you, I would just do a totally new upgrade. I know that's not what your looking for, but if you can pitch in $200, you could build your own, that'll be able to handle HD videos no problem. Maybe even light gaming.
  2. Best answer
    Man, you're gonna have a hard time finding cards.

    Try Ebay.
  3. Thanks for the fast reply!

    Doh! Sorry for no budget. I'm looking to spend around $40, hopefully less depending on what I can find on eBay or Craigslist. I have found some good ones for around $40.

    For the record, I don't care if it's new or used.

    The HD6670 is great and I've heard a lot of good Things about it, but a little overkill for what I need. It's mostly an auxiliary workstation that I use when I don't feel like using my MacBook Pro.

    Other suggestions?

    Thanks!
  4. Not looking to do any heavy upgrading at this point. I'm eventually going to add RAM and I'd like to upgrade the CPU's as well to E5450's or X5460's sometime and that will be about $200. I got this machine essentially for free. I got the sound card on a trade, so my investment at this point is $0. I just want something good enough for HD. My MacBook Pro has a 256MB and a 512MB card and it still doesn't do HD that well.

    eBay has some good deals, just not sure which ones would work for me :D

    Thanks!
  5. Well like you both said, it's very hard finding an 8x card (read: near impossible) as that interface is for things like network or storage devices so I'm out of luck with that. I can use the PCI-X for PCI devices though, and I still have a free PCI slot, but finding a good PCI card for them that has the capabilities to do what I want is going to be MORE expensive than a (better) PCI-E 16x.

    The best cards I could find were the PNY 8400GS http://www.amazon.com/PNY-GeForce-Profile-Graphics-VCG84512SPPB/dp/B001GENPBK

    And the best one was the Sparkle 8400GS http://www.amazon.com/Sparkle-GeForce-8400GS-Graphics-SFPC84GS512U2LP/dp/B001HA91NY

    The caveat was they are about 20-30% more expensive than a modern PCI-E card that blows them away performance-wise. I'll have to wait until I find a good deal on one of those.

    I don't want to go spend hundreds of dollars on a new system as I already have the system and it's not too bad. It just needs some add-on's to make it really nice.
  6. Best answer selected by sirstinky.
  7. This topic has been closed by MouseMonkey
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