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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    704

    Unhappy Upgrading graphics card?

    First off, I'd like to mention that I know very little on computer hardware.

    Ok, I have a Sony Vaio PCV-RX860. Here are some of the official specs:
    Processor: 2.40B GHz Intel® Pentium® 4
    Hard Disk Drive: 80 GB, ATA-100, C = 16 GB, D = 64 GB
    Standard Memory (RAM): 512 MB PC2100 DDR-SDRAM
    Graphics: SiS 651 Integrated Graphics
    Video Memory (VRAM): 32 MB (Shared with system memory)
    MPEG: “Sony Tuned” MPEG Digital Video supports full-screen video playback
    Sound Capabilities: Yamaha YMF-753

    I decided I wanted to play a few new PC games and then realized that I would definitely need a good graphics card to be able to play anything smoothly or anything at all. I would like to be able to play any of the current games out right now with ease.

    As I mentioned before, I don't know much about this. Would it be possible for me to upgrade to an actual good graphics card? I read somewhere that it would be difficult on some systems and wanted to know if I could do it with relative ease.

    If I can upgrade, what would you guys recommend to make my system gaming-ready? Something affordable and not top of the line, but something that gets the job done right.

    I'd be greatful if anyone could give me any suggestions; I also would like to know if it would be possible to hook up my computer to my TV and how I would go about that.

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    NY, NY
    Posts
    3,975
    Geforce 4 ti 4200
    very good card..
    or if you want to go cheaper..
    FX 5200 for ~ $60

    checkout www.pricewatch.com
    and www.newegg.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    8,910
    If you have an AGP port, consider getting an ATI Radeon 9600 or ATI Radeon 9600 XT.

    Very good cards, and not -that- expensive.

  4. #4
    I'm sure that, that has an agp slot, and I'd go for a radeon 9600 XT too, the lowest price on www.pricewatch.com right now is $151, so thats quite a good deal on a Great video card.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    704
    Thanks for the quick replies

    Would a 128mb card be good for my needs or should I go higher/lower?

    And I'm guessing all of these cards would be easy to setup and replace my old one with?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    8,910
    Yes, 128mb would be more than enough. I wouldn't go any lower, nor would I suggest you go higher... unless you have money to burn.

    I'm assuming you're using onboard video, so you need to make sure that you actually have an AGP slot on your motherboard. If you do have an AGP slot, then it's as simple as sliding the card into place, and disabling onboard video in the bios.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    338
    if you still want more assistance, pcmech.com offers great help in forums.

  8. #8
    DO NOT get a geforce FX 5200...considered by many to be the worst card EVER

    what card you should get depends on what kinda games you wanna play

    newegg.com has a radeon 9800 pro for $210.50, and it is much faster than the 9600xt. i highly recommend you get that.

    a geforce FX 5900XT is also good. faster than the 9600xt, but a bit more expensive.

    and don't be fooled by the amount of ram on the card...it's usually just a marketing ploy. some 64mb cards are faster than 256mb cards.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    3,696
    Originally posted by creepcolony
    newegg.com has a radeon 9800 pro for only $199, and it is much faster than the 9600xt. i highly recommend you get that.
    I don't see one there for $199?

    I'm thinking of Sapphire 9600xt "Ultimate" because it comes with a free HL2 coupon. (I don't care about HL2, it's basically $50 off the price of the card.)

    Which 9800 pro would you recommend? How is it faster then the 9600xt? (Just curious)
    Don't look for a way out.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    704
    Is this one any good: ATI RADEON 9200 128MB DDR AGP? It seems a lot cheaper than the others. I know I definitely don't want to spend $200+ on a card right now.

  11. #11
    It's good, I have that card and it runs awesome on any new game now and probably will for awhile longer too!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    3,696
    Well, you could always wait the month or two until the new ATI cards come out. I know that new technologies are always coming out and prices decreasing, just an idea since they will be out soon enough.
    Don't look for a way out.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    76
    You can use an external usb tv card made by haupagge to view tv on your pc, i think it works from pc to tv.

    Yes you can upgrade graphics card, take the old one out of the AGP slot, normally brown.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    704
    I just got this from the Sony support site:

    "If the computer shipped with an onboard video adapter, the onboard video adapter cannot be disabled in the systen BIOS. Because of this, the add on PCI video card can only be used as a secondary video card, and not the primary one."

    I'm guessing that this applies to me; am I screwed?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    3,696
    Go into your bios and take a look if it is true or not.
    Don't look for a way out.

  16. #16
    Originally posted by PixelAxis
    I just got this from the Sony support site:

    "If the computer shipped with an onboard video adapter, the onboard video adapter cannot be disabled in the systen BIOS. Because of this, the add on PCI video card can only be used as a secondary video card, and not the primary one."

    I'm guessing that this applies to me; am I screwed?

    Complete BS! Thats just your PC Company ( Sony ) lying to you, I am surprised that they didn't try and get money out of you. But my friends motherboard has an onboard lan and I put a video card in for him, unless you have a really crappy mobo you should be able to. Btw definatly go with ATI never use nVidia cards they're crap. I have an ATI and my friend has this one which if you didn't buy a card yet I recommend, http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProduc...131-227&depa=0 he won't stop thanking me for recommending that to him. Thats the 256mb version the 128mb version is $9 cheaper so you see what I mean its kinda pointless not to get the 256mb.


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  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    704
    I picked up the ATI RADEON 9200 128MB DDR AGP card as well as a Kingston 512mb stick of RAM at Best Buy today. I wanted to get the 9600XT as everyone suggested, but the 9200 was half the price so I decided to get that instead. I'll be installing them tomorrow

  18. #18
    Its still good
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  19. #19
    Originally posted by PixelAxis
    I picked up the ATI RADEON 9200 128MB DDR AGP card as well as a Kingston 512mb stick of RAM at Best Buy today. I wanted to get the 9600XT as everyone suggested, but the 9200 was half the price so I decided to get that instead. I'll be installing them tomorrow
    i hope you ain't planning on playing a lot of first-person shooters cuz that card is not a very good gaming card.

  20. #20
    Originally posted by creepcolony
    i hope you ain't planning on playing a lot of first-person shooters cuz that card is not a very good gaming card.
    Runs fine on my PC, all new fps games work just fine

  21. #21
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    551
    Originally posted by RDX1
    Well, you could always wait the month or two until the new ATI cards come out. I know that new technologies are always coming out and prices decreasing, just an idea since they will be out soon enough.
    They should be coming out this coming week.

    HL

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    338
    here is a nice review and benchmark of almost all video cards..

    http://www.tomshardware.com/graphic/20031229/index.html

    according to this, in UT2k3 benchmark, Radeon 9200 is WORSE than even Geforce4 MX 460!! In Quake3, MX 440 beat R9200 by 30 frames/sec. lol

    If you still have it unpacked, I think it maybe a good idea to get Ti4200, which is much better. Even if you have, I belive bestbuy have 15, or 30 days, guarantee.

    oh ya, when you talk about old games running "fine", please include FPS rate.
    Last edited by ToaD; 04-26-2004 at 01:03 AM.

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