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Dell Inspiron 518 Video Card Upgrade


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6 replies to this topic

#1 Glunn11

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Posted 09 October 2008 - 10:08 PM

Hey BC!
My mom has purchased a new Dell Inspiron 518 with...
·Pentium Dual-Core E2200 CPU
·2GB DDR2 RAM
·250GB SATA HDD
·DVD-RW Optical Drive
·Free PCI-E slot

and would like to add a video card to the rig. She wants a mid-range video card that is able to run games fairly decently - she's not playing any resource-intensive games like Crysis right now, but does want to have something so that, if a new game is made that tickles her fancy, she will be ready for it. The computer, as I have found in personal research, comes with a 300W power supply. Cards that we are looking into are...

POWERCOLOR HD Radeon 2600XT w/ 256MB GDDR4 for $62.99
POWERCOLOR HD Radeon 2600XT w/ 512MB GDDR2 for $50.99
EVGA GeForce 8600GT w/ 512MB GDDR2 for $69.99
Chaintech GeForce 8600GT w/ 256MB GDDR3 for $69.99

However, as far as I can tell, these cards want a 400 watt power supply according to various forums. However, when running a PSU calculator recommended by such forums, it claims the total system would only demand around 275 watts. So, are these cards OK for the PSU or not? If they are, which would you recommend?

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#2 funnytim

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Posted 10 October 2008 - 01:03 AM

400 watts are ideal for the card, but that doesn't mean the 300W one won't support it. I used my video card with a cheap PSU for a number of years and it worked until it died recently.

Either way I would consider spending a little more money and getting a better, brand name power supply. The ones that come with computers are cheap ones anyway, and will be more likely to fry your system in the even of a problem (better PSUs have built-in protection so it doesn't burn up your whole computer). You can estimate spending ~$30-$50 for a decent 400W one.

#3 Jim P

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Posted 10 October 2008 - 03:38 PM

Here's a great card that will run just fine with a 300w PSU

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16814130378

#4 dpunisher

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Posted 10 October 2008 - 04:19 PM

..or for $20 more you can get a http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16814121274 . Only uses about 10 more watts.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)


#5 Glunn11

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Posted 10 October 2008 - 05:50 PM

Good suggestions, guys, but the mainboard doesn't have a PCI-E 2.0 slot.

So, at the moment, an 8500GT seems to be the best option, since the others seem to be a little too demanding for the system. She says she can upgrade her PSU later if needs be, but I just wanted to bounce off you guys the problem since I've had a lot of good luck here before.
Thanks! :thumbsup:

Edited by Glunn11, 10 October 2008 - 05:51 PM.


#6 dpunisher

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Posted 10 October 2008 - 10:12 PM

Good suggestions, guys, but the mainboard doesn't have a PCI-E 2.0 slot.


It has a PCI Express X16 slot which will work just fine.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)


#7 Glunn11

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Posted 11 October 2008 - 09:41 AM

Good suggestions, guys, but the mainboard doesn't have a PCI-E 2.0 slot.


It has a PCI Express X16 slot which will work just fine.


Well that is some handy information. Thanks! :thumbsup:




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