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PCI Express 2.0 x16 Video Cards


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#1 Woody

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 10:38 PM

I have a Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R motherboard with a PCI Express x16 video card slot, and a GeForce 7600 GS 256MB 128-bit video card. I want to upgrade the video card. Can I put a PCI Express 2.0 x16 card in this motherboard?

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#2 DJBPace07

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 10:50 PM

PCIe 2.0 is backward compatible with PCIe v1.x. Graphic cards and motherboards designed for v2.0 will be able to work with v1.1 and v1.0. I doubt they would have introduced PCIe 2.0 without some type of backwards compatibility. Besides, it will be a while before applications can take advantage of the 2.0 spec.

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#3 Woody

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Posted 19 November 2008 - 12:40 AM

Cool. I am looking for something that will help me view and edit 1080 HD video (1920 x 1080 resolution) from a Canon HG20 camcorder (AVCHD format footage) I am planning to buy. Any suggestions? I am partial to nVidia cards, and don't want to spend more than $200 shipped.

Another question I have is this. I have a Dell 2001FP monitor which has a native resolution of 1600 x 1200 @ 60Hz and a DVI connection to my video card. Do I need an upgraded monitor to view and edit 1080 HD video?

Thanks in advance,

Jason

#4 DJBPace07

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Posted 19 November 2008 - 01:02 AM

With a 1600x1200 resolution and DVI you should be good to go. HD video requires significant CPU power and memory. I'm not sure which editing programs take advantage of the GPU best. I think a 9800 GTX would do well here, since it is about $200. Just make sure you can fit it into your case.

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#5 Woody

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Posted 19 November 2008 - 07:30 PM

Thanks. I have an Antec P182 case so space should not be a concern.

#6 DJBPace07

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Posted 19 November 2008 - 10:26 PM

The P182 is a mid tower case, I would have a difficult time fitting anything larger than a 8800 GTS 640 into my old mid tower case. The hard drive cage would get in the way. You need to have about 10 inches clearance for the 9800.

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#7 Woody

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Posted 01 December 2008 - 08:17 PM

The P182 is a mid tower case, I would have a difficult time fitting anything larger than a 8800 GTS 640 into my old mid tower case. The hard drive cage would get in the way. You need to have about 10 inches clearance for the 9800.



Here is a picture of the inside of my case. You can see my GeForce 7600 GS installed, and you can see that in the current configuration, I have about 10" of space from the back of the case to the Nexus fan that blows air across the video card. I could remove the hard drive cage the fan is connected to, and somehow re-mount the fan closer towards the front of the case to allow more room if needed.

Posted Image

If I upgrade, I am thinking about going with this EVGA GeForce GTX 260 card:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16814130370

Thoughts? I have heard that having a CUDA equipped video card from NVIDIA will be beneficial since there are some video editing software programs that can use the CUDA graphics processor to further speed up AVCHD video editing. But I do not know if a GTX 260 is so equipped. I would hate to spend this kind of money if it won't do this.

Regards.

#8 DJBPace07

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 01:36 AM

The GTX 260 is 11 inches long, it would be a very tight fit. Some reviewers at Newegg complain about the size, saying that NVidia's estimate of the card being 10.5 inches long is too short. Make sure you have the necessary power supply before you get it (at least 500 watts, which is cutting it close, and two 6-pin connectors or four molex connectors). CUDA is available on NVidia GeForce 8 cards or higher. I use CUDA for Folding@Home on my GPU, a 9800 GTX.

NVidia - CUDA Enabled Product List

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#9 Woody

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 03:55 PM

Thank you for that helpful information and link DJBPace07.

Here's a run-down of my current PC's specs:

- Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R motherboard
- E6750 Core 2 Duo overclocked to 3.20 GHz using Scythe Ninja CPU cooler
- 2 x 1GB sticks of G.Skill DDR2 800 RAM - Model F2-6400PHU2-2GBHZ (matched pair)
- Corsair CMPSU-520HX power supply (modular, 520W, SLI-Certified, CrossFire Ready)
- GeForce 7600GS video card (passively cooled on card, Nexus 120mm fan blowing on it)
- Pair of WD Caciar RE WD1600YS hard drives (one for O/S and apps, one for cache drive)
- Pair of WD Caviar RE2 WD5000ABYS hard drives (one for data, one for external data backup)
- 4 Nexus 120mm case fans for cooling operating at 12V each
- Windows XP Pro SP2

Along with upgrading the video card, I would want to upgrade the CPU to a Q9550 quad-core (yes, my mobo supports the 45nm CPUs). My reason for wanting to upgrade the CPU and video card is for AVCHD video editing. I purchased a Canon Vixia HG20 high-def camcorder, and everything I have been reading on the topic of editing AVCHD video is saying I need a fast quad-core CPU and a CUDA enabled video card to be able to preview the clips and have reasonable edit times.

Do you think that upgrading the CPU and video card will require more than the 520W power supply I have now? I know the Q9550 and video card will take more juice than my current CPU and video card. And I believe I do have enough non-used power outputs on the PSU to hook the video card to the PSU.

Thanks again for all your continued help.

Jason

#10 DJBPace07

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 04:21 PM

520W is cutting it very close to the limit with those specs. You might be able to do it, but having more of a margin between the power you have available and the amount suggested would be preferred. A CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W would do well. Video editing, especially high-def, requires a great deal of CPU power and computer memory. You may want to increase the amount of RAM you have to the 4 GB limit.

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#11 Woody

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 04:55 PM

520W is cutting it very close to the limit with those specs. You might be able to do it, but having more of a margin between the power you have available and the amount suggested would be preferred. A CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W would do well. Video editing, especially high-def, requires a great deal of CPU power and computer memory. You may want to increase the amount of RAM you have to the 4 GB limit.



Thanks for that PSU recommendation. What do you think about an extra $20 cost to go with the CMPSU-750TX to get another 100W of power? Maybe put that $20 towards a RAM increase instead?

You may not know, but what would the advantage of the 650TX be over the 620HX (other than 30W and $40 cheaper)? I really like the modular system with my 520HX, and if the cables from the 520HX are long enough to route behind the mobo tray in the P182 case, the cables in the 620HX ought to be as well. Not sure about the 650TX or 750TX however.

Also, what kind of device can I buy that measures the wattage draw of my computer, and is there a benchmark test I can run that fully-taxes the PC to allow me to record a max-draw number?

Thanks.

Jason

#12 DJBPace07

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 05:29 PM

I think almost all of the Corsair line of PSU's are modular. Get the most power you can afford. There is a device you can purchase that will let you measure the amount of power flowing through it. You could try the Kill A Watt Electricity Usage Monitor.

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#13 Woody

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 06:28 PM

Question on upping the RAM to 4GB... should I simply buy 2 more sticks of the same RAM I have now, or should I scrap that RAM and get two new sticks of 2GB RAM instead?

The G.Skill RAM sticks I have right now still cost $95 for a pair of 1GB sticks, which seems high for DDR2 RAM right now. Here is the exact product I have in my PC currently:

G.Skill 2GB RAM Kit - F2-6400PHU2-2GBHZ

For the same price or less, I could get one of the following 2x2GB kits:

Crucial Ballistix 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2 800 Kit - BL2KIT25664AA80A
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2 800 Kit - F2-6400CL4D-4GBPK
G.SKILL HK 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2 800 Kit - F2-6400CL4D-4GBHK

By going this route, I would still leave 2 RAM slots open in case I ever upgrade to a 64-bit O/S and want to get 8GB of RAM.

Thoughts?

#14 DJBPace07

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 07:18 PM

I would go for the 2 x 2GB sticks, to futureproof myself. It's far less wasteful to remove two 1GB than four.

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#15 Woody

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 07:34 PM

I would go for the 2 x 2GB sticks, to futureproof myself. It's far less wasteful to remove two 1GB than four.


Thanks foir validating that thought, as that is what I was thinking.

Regarding having 4GB of RAM with a 32-bit version of Windows XP Pro... does having more than 2GB really help me in any measurable way? I always thought that 2GB was the max the 32-bit O/S could "see" or something like that. Am I missing something? Sorry if my terminology is out of whack.

Thanks.

Jason




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