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bohachth
07-08-10, 07:13 PM
I currently have a HP Pavilion a6720y PC. I was looking to upgrade my current graphics card which is a NVIDIA GeForce 9100. What types of cards should I be looking at? Will I need to do anything else special to my computer to make upgrading my graphics card possible?

This is a link to my computer specs:

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c01643511&lc=en&dlc=en&cc=us&product=3856272&lang=en

Yaboze
07-08-10, 07:29 PM
Well, you have a 300W PSU and a free 16x PCIe slot, so maybe a 9600 or 9800 GT? Or maybe a lower power GTX 220 or GTX 240 might work.

bohachth
07-08-10, 09:04 PM
What kinds of games do you think I will be able to play with this set up given I get a better graphics card? I don't need the settings turned up full blast or anything. Just good enough to run smooth at low/med settings.

bohachth
07-08-10, 09:10 PM
Also, I'm not that tech savvy, could you recommend some brands for the models you recommended? Thank you so much for the help!

Madpistol
07-08-10, 11:49 PM
What sort of games do you want to play, and what is your budget?

ragejg
07-09-10, 12:21 AM
I'd get a Sapphire HD 5750 for around $130, buy Battlefield: Bad Company 2 and enjoy the game at medium/high detail level.

Most other games would be playable at high settings as well.

Serious Sam HD: The Second Encounter
DIRT 2
Dark Void
Gears of War (oldie but goodie)
Halo 2 (great campaign, decent multiplayer)
Team Fortress 2
Portal

You should sell your slower Phenom (register to sell here of do it @ hardforum) and get a 3.0ghz Athlon II x4 to throw in there as well, that'll help with the newer games quite a bit. :)

bob saget
07-09-10, 12:58 AM
Unfortunately, ready built PCs are sometimes hard to upgrade because they have not very good power supplies. Even the ATi 5750, which is a tremendous card at a low price point, needs a 450 watt or greater power supply.
If you'd like to stick with your current setup, you would also need to buy a new PSU (Power Supply Unit.) Corsair make some great ones. You would be looking for around 500watt power supply.
Once you upgrade to that power supply, you can now get the new video card.
If you have never worked inside the computer before, you could try bringing it into some sort of shop to get them to do it for you, or try it on your own. There is lots of help on this site and on the web.
If you feel like you could use a whole brand new computer, members on here could throw a shopping list for you for pretty much any budget. I believe we had some very capable gaming PCs listed for a full price of around $500, if not less. If you are generally happy with your current computer, then yea, change out the power supply and you would be fine to upgrade the video card.
Hope that helps :)

saturnotaku
07-09-10, 06:02 AM
Unfortunately, ready built PCs are sometimes hard to upgrade because they have not very good power supplies. Even the ATi 5750, which is a tremendous card at a low price point, needs a 450 watt or greater power supply.
If you'd like to stick with your current setup, you would also need to buy a new PSU (Power Supply Unit.) Corsair make some great ones. You would be looking for around 500watt power supply.

The OP says he's not tech savvy, so I wouldn't push him into a PSU upgrade.

For the system he has, this (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500142) would probably be the best choice. All he would need to do is uninstall his current graphics drivers, open the case, pop the new card in, close it up, install the new drivers for the card, and he should be good to go. The 9800 GT should allow for smooth play of most games at 1280x800/1024. Crysis should even be playable at that resolution with medium settings.

bohachth
07-09-10, 10:04 AM
The OP says he's not tech savvy, so I wouldn't push him into a PSU upgrade.

For the system he has, this (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500142) would probably be the best choice. All he would need to do is uninstall his current graphics drivers, open the case, pop the new card in, close it up, install the new drivers for the card, and he should be good to go. The 9800 GT should allow for smooth play of most games at 1280x800/1024. Crysis should even be playable at that resolution with medium settings.

What are the differences between the link you posted to the 9800 GT and this one:

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/PNY+-+NVIDIA+GeForce+9800+GT+1GB+GDDR3+PCI+Express+Grap hics+Card/8968094.p?id=1218006355798&skuId=8968094&st=9800%20GT&cp=1&lp=2

Madpistol
07-09-10, 10:13 AM
What are the differences between the link you posted to the 9800 GT and this one:

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/PNY+-+NVIDIA+GeForce+9800+GT+1GB+GDDR3+PCI+Express+Grap hics+Card/8968094.p?id=1218006355798&skuId=8968094&st=9800%20GT&cp=1&lp=2

The one in the best buy link looks like it's pre-overclocked. I don't like pre-overclocked cards because they tend to fail more often than non-overclocked versions.

For that sort of money, you should seriously consider getting a Radeon HD 5670.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150467

It requires no external power, so you can just plug it in and play. Since your PSU doesn't have a lot of extra power, this card is an ideal fit for you. :)

ragejg
07-09-10, 10:19 AM
Honestly I'd ditch the 8/9 series and go with a 240 or 250. There' enough optimizations between them to offer some decent performance improvements over the 8/9 series, plus they are a little more energy-efficient.

Or, like Madpistol said, an HD 5670.

saturnotaku
07-09-10, 11:03 AM
What are the differences between the link you posted to the 9800 GT and this one:

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/PNY+-+NVIDIA+GeForce+9800+GT+1GB+GDDR3+PCI+Express+Grap hics+Card/8968094.p?id=1218006355798&skuId=8968094&st=9800%20GT&cp=1&lp=2

The card you linked to is pre-overclocked, requires external power (which you can't use), and is $30 more costly. You have to pay shipping on the card from Newegg, but you'd have to pay sales tax from Best Buy.

bohachth
07-09-10, 12:46 PM
Honestly I'd ditch the 8/9 series and go with a 240 or 250. There' enough optimizations between them to offer some decent performance improvements over the 8/9 series, plus they are a little more energy-efficient.

Or, like Madpistol said, an HD 5670.

The specifications for the HD5670 requires 400 wattage, I believe mine is only 300. Is this a problem?

Also how is this link for the 240?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500146&cm_re=240_gt-_-14-500-146-_-Product

saturnotaku
07-09-10, 01:42 PM
The specifications for the HD5670 requires 400 wattage, I believe mine is only 300. Is this a problem?

Also how is this link for the 240?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500146&cm_re=240_gt-_-14-500-146-_-Product

The 9800 GT is going to be faster on account of its greater number of shader processors and 256-bit memory interface versus the 128-bit of the GT 240.

bohachth
07-09-10, 03:21 PM
Great! Thanks a lot to everyone who replied to my thread. With all the information considered I think I am going to buy the 9800 GT shown below:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500142&cm_re=9800_GT-_-14-500-142-_-Product
I am a casual gamer at this current point in time and don't think I play enough to warrant buying a new PSU or processor. However, that may change in the future (if so, I will be back to this forum to get help!) Thanks again to everyone for taking the time to help me with my decision!

Madpistol
07-09-10, 04:49 PM
The specifications for the HD5670 requires 400 wattage, I believe mine is only 300. Is this a problem?

Also how is this link for the 240?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814500146&cm_re=240_gt-_-14-500-146-_-Product

Yep. They also recommended 400-watts for a 6800 GT, which was a high end part about 5 years ago. However, that card required auxilary power from the PSU. The one I recommended pulls all of it's power from the PCIe slot, so your current PSU is completely fine.

That 9800 GT will be fine though. I think the 5670 would last a little longer though, as it's a DX11 card.