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Upgrading to dedicated Graphics card


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#1 Grantyy

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 08:41 AM

Hi, I have the Advent 1410, i5 processor with 6gb ram, I got a very good deal on it but at present it doesn't meet my needs as it only has a standard monitor output (is it VGA, blue) My old Medion had many outputs and I had it linked to a monitor and my TV (output to 1080i) which is what I would like to do with my new PC, so long as I can output to my TV in High Def reliably and i am improving on the integrated graphics (Not difficult from what I have read) then i'm happy.

I know the Advent has a foxconn motherboard, I have read that it has 2 pcie x 1 slots and I guess a 16x PCIe slot, the power supply is something i'm having trouble finding but I think it could be 250w, If needed I will open it up later and check.

1) Ideally I'd like to know what is the best possible upgrade I can get without changing the power supply?

2) If I did have to change the power supply is it just a case of out with the old and in with the new? would i have to worry about cooling as I know many graphics cards have fans built on to them, I'm not worried about having to upgrade in this way, I have done basic tasks such as upgrading ram a few times before but it's just the knowledge of what works together and particularly making sure it doesn't over heat that worries me, I'm not too worried about playing high end games, football manager and battle pirates which is flash based are my average games at the min but if the cost isn't too high, i'd rather do it properly first time to save having to upgrade again

Thank you for your time, I appreciate any help I recieve :)

Edited by Grantyy, 21 December 2012 - 08:42 AM.


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#2 DJBPace07

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 09:22 AM

When I search for your PC, it often takes me to UK sites. Are you going to be buying from UK retailers? We need to know how much you're willing to spend and what power supply you have.

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#3 Grantyy

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 12:56 PM

Hi, Yes it's an Advent which I believe is a PC World brand and i'm in the UK, I have removed the side cover and I find the label on the power unit a little confusing, it's branded CWT, says 'switching power supply' below that, It then reads

Where I have written SPACE the text is simply over the far right hand side of the unit

Model no PUFP305P
AC I/P: SPACE DC O/P:305W Max
230VAC SPACE +5V 18.0A
2.5A SPACE +3.3V 21.0A
47-63Hz SPACE +12V1 12.0A
SPACE +12V2 12.0A
SPACE +5Vsb 2.5A


In very small letters at the bottom it says
Total Power on +5V & +3.3V is 120W Max

So its a 305W power unit right, or a 230W?

There is a slot that says PCI-E1 16x so guess that's standard right, hope this is enough info for you guys to point me in the right direction,
Maybe at this point it's worth saying that sometime soonI would also like to install an SSD with enough space for my Windows 8 and a few other programs, I'm guessing they use little power but thought best to mention now.
Thanks again for your time, appreciate it :)

Edited by Grantyy, 21 December 2012 - 01:04 PM.


#4 killerx525

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 06:34 AM

It's a 305W power supply and it can probably just run a low end graphics card like this.

Edited by killerx525, 22 December 2012 - 09:17 AM.

>Michael 
System1: CPU- Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.4GHz, CPU Cooler- Noctua NH-D14, RAM- G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB Kit(4Gx4) DDR3 2133MHz, SSD/HDD- Samsung 850 EVO 250GB/Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB/Seagate Barracuada 3TB, GPU- 2x EVGA GTX980 Superclocked @1360/MHz1900MHz, Motherboard- Asus X99 Deluxe, Case- Custom Mac G5, PSU- EVGA P2-1000W, Soundcard- Realtek High Definition Audio, OS- Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit
Games: APB: Reloaded, Hours played: 3100+  System2: Late 2011 Macbook Pro 15inch   OFw63FY.png


#5 DJBPace07

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 07:46 PM

If you're aiming for a performance GPU, you will need to upgrade your power supply to something like the Corsair TX550M 550W. Using this power supply gets you into the more mainstream GPU brackets rather than the lower-end models.

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#6 Grantyy

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 05:57 PM

Thanks for your help so far,I would be happy with any graphics card which can output to 2 displays in full HD, games are not a priority but I often watch TV, Films on my main TV and currently have no output to do that, I would also like to install an SSD, could you please advise if it is possible to achieve both upgrades without a power upgrade, if not is the Corsair mentioned above the best option?

I have installed memory before and am reasonably familiar with whats inside my PC but I may just need a little guidance to be sure I know what I'm doing.
I guess replacing the power unit is simple, just gotta make sure all the same connections are made right? graphics card clips in and I guess I have to change something in the bios to bypass integrated graphics and the SSD I guess fits in a bay near the standard HD, Not too sure where the connection on the Motherboard is for that but I guess its the same as the HD assuming there is a spare slot, Is it that simple? rather not pay for a job I could probably do myself quite easily with a little guidance from you fine people :)

#7 DJBPace07

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 08:45 PM

If you are going to be doing any kind of gaming, you will want something higher-end than a GT 610. The issue comes with the power supply, that really does need to be upgraded if you are going to go for the more mainstream cards. However, if you aren't doing any gaming whatsoever, the GT 610 has ample processing power. The card in Killer's post above does has ample memory and processing capability to handle two monitors of non-gaming content, that is, unless you have very high resolution monitors.

Replacing the power supply is fairly easy. Just remember to take note of what has been plugged into the unit. Typically, the motherboard has two connections, one for the CPU and a large ATX connector for all other motherboard components. Each of the drives also has a power connection, as does many add-in cards.

Graphics cards are also simple. First, always make sure you download the latest graphics card drivers from either AMD or Nvidia and remove the old drivers before shutting the PC down to do the upgrade. From this point on, it is all hardware related, just remove the old one and install the new card, don't forget to connect the PCI-E power connectors if needed. Many BIOS' automatically switch to the dedicated GPU but some do need to be told to use it over the integrated graphics. Install the drivers you downloaded and you're set. The Sapphire HD 7850 OC Edition 1GB is a mainstream card. The Gigabyte GTX 660 OC 2GB is a higher-end gaming card that does well too. Both need a 500W power supply.

An SSD can help with boot times and is little more complex to set up. SSD's can be very useful in booting and accessing information quickly. The cost is still quite high so most only put their OS, most frequently used applications, and maybe a game on it. Usually, once a game has been loaded into memory, the usefulness of an SSD diminishes. If you are going to be wiping out Windows in a new install or upgrade, you can simply plug in the SSD and tell Windows to install to that, removing the old drive once done. However, if you are moving Windows, or most of the contents of C: over to the SSD, you will need cloning software which is often included with some SSD's.

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#8 Jan Benedict

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 12:32 AM

You won't be able to run higher-end graphics card, since you have a 305W PSU with only 12 A on the +12V rail. You won't have any use of 6 pin or 8 pin connectors when running lower-end graphics card.

#9 DJBPace07

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 07:22 AM

Graphics on PC's are a bit different than TV's. On a PC, you have a plethora of resolutions. Anything over 720p is considered HD, and rarely used in PC graphics anymore. 1080p is more common, but many gamers go above that. That said, if you are using two monitors and planning on gaming, you may want a graphics card with 2GB or more of memory on it.

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