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Graphics Card & Power Supply


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9 replies to this topic

#1 Frick716

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Posted 20 May 2006 - 06:26 PM

Okay. Hopefully I can explain this clearly. I currently use a Dell Dimension 4600c, which is a small computer. (Small Form Factor, I think it's called.) Anyway, in order to purchase stuff for it, I'm always looking for low profile, half height, ect. It's very frustrating.

I also play the Sims 2 and my old Nvidia GeForce FX5200 just wasn't handling the game the way I wanted it to. I spent months looking for a new card and found a Nvidia GeForce 6200. It had the wrong kind of plug (DVI instead of VGA, I think) but it had a converter plug. So I figured I was all set.

I installed my card and everything looked AMAZING and I was very happy. Shortly after I discovered that my graphics were dying within minutes of playing the game. This didn't seem right to me that a card that was supposedly better than my old card was losing graphic quality faster. I got aggravated with it for awhile and was trying to figure out what was going on.

A friend mentioned to me that it might be the power supply. She said she wasn't 100% sure but a friend told her that the higher end cards needed at least 400W. So I went on a search on dells site and found this:

http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/syst...9&s=dhs#1106076

It's all the documentation for my computer and it says that my power supply wattage is 150W. Waayyyy below. So now I'm thinking that could be it.

My computer is about 3 years old, but it runs really well. I'm a college student and I REALLY can't afford to be buying a new computer but I can afford to upgrade it, especially with newegg. I've got 640MB of RAM, I think an 80GB hard drive, a Pentium 4 processor, and Im running Windows XP.

So I have two questions, and I'm so sorry that was SOOO long.

1) Is it possible that it IS the power supply?

and

2) If it is the power supply, Is that something I could upgrade on my own? My main concern is the size of my computer. I've installed a videocard and memory before, but those were both very easy and I'm concered this would be harder.

Any other suggestions, comments, or help would be greatly appreciated. And if anymore information is needed I'll do my best to get it for you. :thumbsup:

Thanks,
Steph


Edit to add: I just went onto newegg and looked at the card and I must have overlooked this "-A minimum 300W system power supply" So I guess that answers question one.

Edited by Frick716, 20 May 2006 - 06:45 PM.


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#2 Klinkaroo

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Posted 20 May 2006 - 10:42 PM

There is a big chance that you would need to find a bigger powersupple. The problem we have here is that you have a SFF (Small Form Factor) case. You need a speacial power supply to fit into that box.

Do you have a model number for your pc?

Installing a power supply is not very difficult. All you have to do is take out the old one by unscrewing some screws and unplugging the wires. Then take the new power supply connect the same wires in the same plugs and screw it back in...

Edited by Klinkaroo, 20 May 2006 - 10:42 PM.


#3 dc3

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Posted 21 May 2006 - 02:05 AM

It definitly looks like the PSU would be a problem according to the requirements.

Minimum System Requirements
>> Intel Pentium®III, AMD® Duron™ or Athlon™ class processor or higher
>> 128MB of RAM
>> 250 watt min./300 watt recommended power supply
>> An available AGP or PCI slot
>> CD or DVD-ROM Drive
>> 10MB available hard disk space (50MB for full installation)
>> Microsoft® Windows® 95 OSR2, 98 or higher, ME, 2000, XP, NT4.0 with service pack 5 or 6

Your problem now is that even if you could find ATX PSU that would fit into your case you will need an adaptor for the connectors.

I do not know anything about the company that is selling these PSUs, but they claim to have PSUs that will be compatible with you machine, see it here.

The prices look high, but the alternative is to purchase one from Dell, it too will be expensive.

Edited by dc3, 21 May 2006 - 02:10 AM.

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#4 Mr Alpha

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Posted 21 May 2006 - 06:52 AM

I do not know anything about the company that is selling these PSUs, but they claim to have PSUs that will be compatible with you machine, see it here.

The prices look high, but the alternative is to purchase one from Dell, it too will be expensive.

PC power & cooling is expensive. They make really, really, high quality power supplies.
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#5 HitSquad

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Posted 21 May 2006 - 06:54 AM

Hi Frick716

A friend mentioned to me that it might be the power supply. She said she wasn't 100% sure but a friend told her that the higher end cards needed at least 400W

That only comes in to play if the video card requires a seperate power source.
If it has one, then without it hooked up, or hooked up incorrectly, the card drops it's clock speed automatically.
If it doesn't have one, which I'm suspecting is the case, it' shouldn't be an issue. Normal power via the agp slot should be enough and within the PS's capability.
Be aware that if the card requires a seperate power source via a molex connecter, do not split off one that also supplies power to the case fans. It's not enough juice. You would want to use one that also supplies power to one of the drives. In this case, your current power supply couldn't stand the strain.
"nvidia 6200" describes the chipset on the card. Without knowing the manufacturer or brand name, I can't tell wether the card does or does not have a seperate power hookup. :thumbsup:

Edited by HitSquad, 21 May 2006 - 07:12 AM.


#6 Frick716

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Posted 21 May 2006 - 11:18 AM

Klinkaroo - The side of my case has a model number, which is actually 3 letters, and a serial number which is a group of numbers.

dc3 - I actually didn't see any on that site, but I could have misread.

HitSquad - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?...N82E16814125217

That is my card exactly. I bought it from newegg.

Edited by Frick716, 21 May 2006 - 01:47 PM.


#7 pascor22234

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Posted 21 May 2006 - 04:03 PM

Klinkaroo, I have to disagree on your advice as to which power supply leads to hook up a video card's auxiliary power. Fans use small amouts of power, a small fraction of an amp. Drives use power in the order of multiple amps. That means the video card should be hooked up to an unused power supply lead or, if need be, one that is also hooked up to a fan.

Edited by pascor22234, 21 May 2006 - 04:04 PM.


#8 Frick716

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Posted 22 May 2006 - 01:12 PM

A friend also suggested to me that possibly I don't have enough RAM in my computer for this card. I have 640MB of RAM currently. (I know this means the sticks are unmatched, I'm working on that.)

Could that possibly it?

#9 Klinkaroo

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Posted 22 May 2006 - 02:24 PM

Looking at it I really don't think it's the RAM

#10 Frick716

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Posted 22 May 2006 - 03:06 PM

So then power supply it is.

All that leaves is if it can be upgraded.




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