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Posted: 5/5/2003 7:13:24 PM EDT
I just upgraded from my 7 year-old Gateway P120 to a Dell 2350 (yeah, I know, but the choices are: spend my money on a computer, or spend my money on my guns. The guns generally win. But I HAD to upgrade the PC.) Anyway, the Dell runs a 2.0GHz Pentium IV, and right now it has 256k of memory. The graphics are on-board the motherboard, and share the system memory. I want to upgrade to 1GB of memory (PC1200 266MHz) and add a 128MB PCI video card (the system is not equipped with an AGP slot.) Will this run game software adequately? I'm primarily interested in the FPS-type games.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 7:18:48 PM EDT
Honestly, for the newer FPS games, the PCI just wont cut it. If youre interested in stuff like Half Life and Quake 3 it should run fine, but I cant say that for newer stuff like Battlefield 1942 or the like. Believe me, I was stuck with PCI and a Vooodoo 3 3000 for a looong time
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 7:21:16 PM EDT
As a general rule, motherboards with IGP integrated video puke when you try to add another video card. I don't know about the specifics of your MBD but I would say BAD IDEA. (Not to mention voiding that lovely Dell warranty)
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 7:23:40 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/5/2003 7:30:24 PM EDT by freeride21a]
the best PCI graphics card out right now is the power color radeon 9000...they retail at [url=http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproduct.asp?DEPA=&submit=Go&description=power+color+pci+9000]www.newegg.com[/url] for $91 it is a decent card and will play all the games you want to play just fine! and will probably be good for another year or two. right now it is considered a middle of the road card, but it supports all the dx8.1 features unlike its competitor the geforce4mx cards. You will be happy. dont worry about agp vs pci as it is not an option for you...and you probly arent gonna max out all your video settings in the games, its not worth it unless you have a TOP OF THE LINE machine.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 9:08:14 PM EDT
Thanks, freeride. I was looking at the GeForce cards, but the Radeon looks better. Installation looks to be a bear, though.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 9:14:56 PM EDT
I had a radeon 9100 for a bit, i had no problems at all installing, ATI has better drivers now than they used to. The bad driver stereotype is no longer in my opinion, ever since they brought out the catalyst drivers.
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 10:30:53 PM EDT
hmmm seems alot of people are getting the 2350. I got a 4500 a while back works perfict for me, I went for everything to be a card nothing intigrated. Running A GForce 4 hopfully Ill be up to date somewhat for awhile... Dell Kicks ass over All other Packaged Machines ive seen
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 10:33:33 PM EDT
Raedon 9500... whooohoooo!
Link Posted: 5/5/2003 10:44:56 PM EDT
I have a Radeon 9700pro, its no better than the 9500 which is a better deal check out overclockers.com forum, it kicks ASS
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 12:08:22 AM EDT
I got the 9500 pro with my system. Does all that the 9700 does, even uses the same drivers, just less powerfull. But for 200 bucks difference I don't care whether I get 150fps as opposed to 185fps. So far the thing has been rock solid. Man, I put off getting this computer for the same reason, six guns last year. No guns this year, but I certainly use the computer more than I shoot so it was about time to break down and get it. Good to beplaying games again, but damn, this is not the time of year to be wasting time for my job. Looking forward to summer though. [:)]
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 12:28:11 AM EDT
ATI cant write drivers for anything. their chipset aint bad, but ati has puked too many machines, and will NEVER run at the performance it should with their crappy drivers. nvidea took a dump with their MX card, so id recomend the ti 4600 until their new card comes out to make up for the MX failure. ATI sucks.
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 3:23:38 AM EDT
From what I have seen ATI has gotten their act together on drivers and their new videocards are stomping all over NVidias. The Ti 4600 is a waste of money. You can get almost as good performance out of a Ti 4200 for a lot less money.
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 7:41:41 AM EDT
From experience, I can tell you that making changes to a Dell system will usually end in disaster. [V]
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 7:57:44 AM EDT
That's why I built my computer from the ground up instead of buying one already built by someone such as Dell. You can't upgrade those damn factory computers without running into serious problems. Plus for the the money I have a computer that's twice as good as any Dell and cost me only half as much to build. I can play Operation Flash Point with all the settings turned up and I don't even get a hicup in performance. Plus I have the peace-of-mind knowing I can continue to upgrade for years to come plus the satisfaction of knowing I built it myself (not that it was that hard).
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 8:23:49 AM EDT
KB, Back up all your stuff! I say this because Kaesan has a point. The Dell images tend to get flaky when you change major things and conflicts arise. In that case a rebuild of the OS will result. Just a handy tip: Partition your drive into at least 2 partitions. One for the OS and one for the programs and saved files. This way you can do backups, but unless the drive takes a sh!t, you don't need to whack all your data, just the OS partition and rebuild from there. Lots less file shuffling. As for the PCI/AGP thing. With 8x AGP going around, yes AGP will be faster than PCI, but not a hell of a lot. Memory; Are you sure about that PC1200? It's not PC2100? If you can get faster, I'd say do it, like PC2700. But the more mem you've got the better. No such thing as too much RAM.
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 8:45:54 AM EDT
Depending on how much you have to spend, you could probably replace the Dell motherboard with a similar model and get AGP, faster RAM bus, built in ATA133, etc...and still use your 2 gig pentium4. I personally run the GeForce4 4200Ti and gaming is about the only thing I do on that PC - 99fps all day on half life, 30+fps on America's Army even on the huge maps. It is A BIG mofo of a video card though, had to replace my motherboard for clearance reasons. There *should* be an option in the BIOS when the computer boots up to disable onboard video if you just install a PCI board. If you do go GeForce4 make sure you have PLENTY of room behind the PCI slot you want to put it in. You also might want to add one the fans that mounts into an expansion slot as it generates quite bit of heat too. Your current setup as-is will probably perform acceptably on older games, but memory and video will definately need to be upgraded if you want the best from the latest and greatest games.
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 8:46:40 AM EDT
Originally Posted By BennyFranklin: As for the PCI/AGP thing. With 8x AGP going around, yes AGP will be faster than PCI, but not a hell of a lot.
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Are you serious? Two years ago performance was close between the two.
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 3:16:34 PM EDT
Originally Posted By BennyFranklin: KB, Back up all your stuff! I say this because Kaesan has a point. The Dell images tend to get flaky when you change major things and conflicts arise. In that case a rebuild of the OS will result. Just a handy tip: Partition your drive into at least 2 partitions. One for the OS and one for the programs and saved files. This way you can do backups, but unless the drive takes a sh!t, you don't need to whack all your data, just the OS partition and rebuild from there. Lots less file shuffling..
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Sounds like a good idea!
As for the PCI/AGP thing. With 8x AGP going around, yes AGP will be faster than PCI, but not a hell of a lot. Memory; Are you sure about that PC1200? It's not PC2100? If you can get faster, I'd say do it, like PC2700. But the more mem you've got the better. No such thing as too much RAM.
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Yes, it's PC2100 (typo!) 266MHz DDR
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