1. #1
    Mechagnome Karot's Avatar
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    Upgrading video card, stuck with PCI

    My computer is 7 years old now, it's a Medion I picked up from Aldi for several hundred dollars back in '03. It's got a Pentium 4 processor, 2x 150GB hard drives, 2.5GB memory, and some crappy old ATI video card which doesn't have updated drivers anymore. Recently I installed Windows 7 on it. For WoW, I use the lowest graphics settings mostly (sometimes I move "View Distance" and "Particle Density" up to "Fair" or "Good"), and most of the time I max out at 10 fps for normal play, which drops to 1-5 fps during raids, the low end being for 25-mans or graphically intensive environments like ICC or Lost City of the Tol'vir. The video card does cause my computer to crash every now and then, but oddly enough, not while playing.

    My brother had picked out a new video card for me for Christmas, an NVIDIA e-GeForce 8600. However, my motherboard has the old PCI slot, and this one has PCIE. So it's useless until I'm able to upgrade my entire system. I found http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814187042 which works with PCI. No fan, but it's got a heatsink. Mostly mixed reviews, but for the most part they say it works well enough to bring a little life to an old machine if you're stuck with PCI, as long as you don't expect too much out of it. It's a budget card, which is what I need right now. It's mainly just a stopgap until I'm able to get around to upgrading my entire system.

    Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions?

  2. #2
    The Lightbringer Asera's Avatar
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    I honestly wouldn't even bother with a PCI card. The bandwidth on that bus is so horrid, you won't see much improvement. And chances are it will still crash due to the bus getting hammered all the time.
    Statism: Total bliss is just one more regulation away.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Morlin View Post
    My computer is 7 years old now,
    7 years is way past expiry date for gaming computer. Problem with so old technology is that upgrades are horribly overpriced compared to performance gained unless you buy second hand pieces at big discounts and do little bit of tinkering like overclocking.

    Pulling numbers of of my hat for illustration purposes:

    - If you spend $500 to upgrade everything possible, you'll get around 60-80% of the performance a new computer with $500 pricetag can do.
    - If you spend $250 you might double the speed of your current computer, but still the new $500 computer is probably twice as fast.
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  4. #4
    Mechagnome Karot's Avatar
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    Really I'm only looking to make the game a bit more bearable for a few more months until I can do a full-on upgrade. I'm not expecting a ton from a PCI card, I just need something to tide me over.

  5. #5
    I personally think that every cent you intend to spend towards a machine, should be put to your new machine. Would you see a performance gain on average. Ofcourse. But it would be so minimal, given the limits of your current CPU, that it would be almost pointless, which is pretty much what the previous two posters said.

    From personal experience, trying to breathe life into a very old machine for gaming has always been a waste of money.

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