I'm slightly stuck with the issue of making the best of what I have with my wife's 6 year old computer. I would like to make it run a little better. The system's specs are as follows:
Model: Dell Dimension 9150 CPU: Intel Pentium 4 3.4Ghz Mobo: Dell 0FJ030 Memory: currently 2048MB (but has two more slots available, which I also plan to upgrade, making that 4GB) Current GPU: NVidia Geforce 6800 256-bit Power supply: was changed through the years to a 550W OS: Win XP Usage: my wife's a hardcore Sims 3 fan ) ; also the regular internet browsing Budget: 80-100$
I'm not interested in a certain website, since I don't live in the US. I would just like some advice on a good card that answers my biggest problem: the compatibility with my (quite old) system.
I did find an interesting card, a Radeon HD6670, but I'm not sure about the compatibility...
Thank for the answer!
I'm not really concerned with the port, but with the version of the port. My current card is connected via a PCIexpress v1 port, but I have noticed that newer cards use PCIexpress v2 ports, or even v3.
I'm afraid that even if the card proves to be compatible with my system, the port might bottleneck its performance and the card wouldn't be able to reach its full potential.
Yeah a Pentium-4 is a very old CPU it could become a bottleneck in certain applications. But if you use the PC just for web browsing and the only game she plays is the SIMS 3 I guess it will still get the job done for a while and changing the video card will definitely help boosting the performance for her gaming. Yes the Radeon 6670 would probably be the best choice for your system. I wouldn't recommend anything above it because of the potential CPU bottleneck so it's probably the best card you can get for this system. Don't worry about the fact that the card is PCI-Express 3.0 it's backward compatible so it will work in a PCI-E 1.0 slot. Your power supply also have enough power, the 6670 doesn't draw a lot of power so you're ok.
I heard people having problems with some 2.0 and 2.1 cards in 1.0 slots, but I thought they'd solve that by now with 3.0 cards. By the way, 4850 and 4870 are 2.0 so I am wondering if he doesn't risk having more problems with those than a 3.0 (never heard of anyone having issues with 3.0 cards in older generation slots). Keep in mind that the 4850 requires 1 x 6-pin PCI-E power connector and the 4870 requires 2. But since he already replaced his power supply I guess he should be ok, but still something to check before buying the card.
I know Pent 4 is quite obsolete, but I wouldn't really go as far as replacing that as well, because one thing leads to another and I would most probably end up rebuilding the system from scratch! I just want to give the old guy a boost.
I realize I haven't shared enough info about the GPU I had my eye on: it's a Gigabyte Radeon HD6670 1GB DDR3 128-bit GPU that uses a PCI Express x16 2.1 port.
Should I go ahead and purchase it or should I find a better option (mostly in terms of compatibility and maximum performance on this particular system)?
The reason I don't particularly like the idea of getting the 4850 is that I'll be buying from local shops, not ebay (since the shipping and import charges sum up to approximately 55$, more than the card itself). The 4850 is currently unavailable in the shop I'd like to buy my card from.
Another reason why I am slightly against the 4850 is because, like I said before, I am upgrading the computer for my wife who plays the sims 3, so I take into account the card that best supports this particular game.