Good AGP card for Gaming?

March 25, 2009 at 10:24:10
Specs: Windows XP Professional SP3, P4 2.0 Ghz, 1.5 GB DDR RAM
Okay, I know alot of you are going to say just get a computer with an pci-e slot. Well, I don't have the money right now but I don't mind spending a couple of bucks on a new card to play through the hundreds of PC games I couldn't play for so long.

Okay, first off. The board I have is an i845GE and the agp in it is on 4x. Not sure when games actually required more than a 4x to run at high settings. I don't want to spend a large amount on a new card that I won't use completely.

My RAM is fine according to most newer games specs but the processor is outdated. Does anyone know what the best processor I can upgrade to using this board?

And I am unsure about the PSU. I still need to find out how many watts.

I figured I would come here since most of you seem to know plenty about gaming and would be very helpful. I would call a computer place but they would most likely try to get me to upgrade so they can make some money.

Right now I am using a Geforce2 MX 200 32MB. The best I can do is Soldier of Fortune at Highest Settings and the lowest resolution. lol

I think my FSB is 400mhz if that helps. If any more info is needed I can look it up.

One last thing is a sound card. I'm using a Sound Blaster Live! 5.1 right now. What would a good upgrade be?

Thanks in advance for anyone who can help.

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March 25, 2009 at 12:47:41
The 845GE supports 533MHz FSB CPUs, so the best processor you could put in there is the 3.06GHz P4 (Northwood core with hyper-threading, 533MHz FSB). Avoid the Prescott P4; your board would probably struggle supplying Prescott with enough amperage.

A used 2.8/533 or 3.06 on eBay shouldn't cost too much. Try for under $45.

As for the video card, your current 2.0 P4 would limit the performance of any card faster than the Radeon 9800 Pro or GeForce 6600. With a 2.8 or 3.06GHz CPU, however, you should be able to take full advantage of video cards as fast as the GeForce 7800GS and Radeon 2600XT. All four of the cards I mentioned are a lot faster than your GF2.

"One last thing is a sound card. What would a good upgrade be?"

Keep the current sound card. You don't want to spend too much money on that rig.

Socket 939³
Dual-core Opteron 185 @ 3.2GHz
2x 8800GTS in SLI
4GB CL2 PC3200
Blu-ray burner
X-Fi Ti Pro PCI-E
Antec P182
Samsung 24" LCD
Vista 64

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March 25, 2009 at 13:13:47
Thanks for the info. I appreciate the help. I plan on buying, or building a much better rig in the future. But now, I just need something to get by time and like I said, theres plenty games that I can play until then.

And yeah, I know the GF2 is so much lower than anything else.

I will look at prices on eBay and will ask if I have any more questions. Thanks for the help.

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March 25, 2009 at 13:24:57
The processor was about the price you said.

I found a PNY GeForce 7800 256MB for around $10. Not bad.

What brand of card would be best? I see eVGA, PNY, BFG and the Nvidia's. I know XFX make good cards. Not sure if there is a 7800 for cheap.

Also, not sure if you read the part where its only AGP 4x. Is that gonna hold me back any? If so, I may just stick a better card in it and hold the processor wait for a better PC.

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March 25, 2009 at 14:38:41
"I found a PNY GeForce 7800 256MB for around $10"

Where did you find that, eBay? If so, I doubt it's anywhere near the end of the auction. I bet it sells for between $75-100.

You won't be able to run a high end card without an adequate power supply. You're gonna have to open the case & check the label. Post back with the make/model/wattage & the amperage specs for the +3.3v, +5v & +12v.

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March 25, 2009 at 15:51:53

i would avoid ebay at all costs,i understand that you are trying to find a 4x agp card...but i personally would not use ebay because a lot of scams occur there. just some helpful advice & yes there are ppl looking to scam you out of any amount of $$$$ that they can get away with. 'i'm not implying that everyone who uses ebay is a scam artist...just be wary of anybody on ebay. antec also makes a good psu.

hope this helps.

Intel Core 2 Quad Processor Q6600

3 Gigs Ram

Windows Vista Home Premium

640 Gig HD

Quad Core All The Way !!

If It Isn't Broken Don't Fix It. !!!!

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March 25, 2009 at 16:24:21
8X AGP cards are backwards compatible with 4X. There are still plenty of AGP cards available at but the really good ones are expensive. You could settle for something like a Radeon 1650Pro or HD2600XT. The HD2600XT doesn't get stellar reviews though, at least not this particular one.

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March 25, 2009 at 20:34:14
I knew Agp 8x would work in Agp 4x. I was wondering about the bandwidth since 8x is doubled.

And I know about eBay rip offs. I experienced it before. Only once though luckily.

And yeah, the $10 card was on eBay. I searched under shopping in Google. The bid had ended already so I think thats what it sold at. Maybe not. Other cards were around 20 and 30 dollars with ended bids. Brand new, about 130.

I copied down the specs on my PSU. Its an ATX 12v 2.01

Norwood Micro

I can't make much of this but I am sure some of you could.

Fuse: 6.3a, 250v

DC Output: +3.3V - 16.0A (org), +5V - 22.0A (red), +12V - 6.0V (yel), +12V2 - 12A (yel/blk), +5Vsb - 2.0A (purp), -12V - .5A (blue), +3.3V & +5V = 150w Max

And guessing by the last part, Its only 150watts.

So, am I gonna have to find a 300 or 350?

I found a BFG GeForce 7800GS OC AGP 256MB for 130. But it requires a 400 watt power supply and a hardrive power dongle. Which I have an open one.

Its seems this may cost more than I thought.

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March 25, 2009 at 22:10:07
"I found a BFG GeForce 7800GS OC AGP 256MB for 130"

The Radeon HD3850 is THE fastest AGP card ever made & sells for about $100....even less if you're willing to take a chance on "open box". Why would you pay $130 for a slower card?

And when you consider a power supply, it's amperage that's important, especially on the +12v rail. I doubt the one you have will handle a high end gaming card. Here's a 400W Corsair with 30A on the +12v:

EDIT: you snooze, you lose. The 1st HD3850 on my list already sold out & was was only $78.

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March 26, 2009 at 09:40:27
So It'll be about 125 to 140 to upgrade. Thats IF I can find a processor in the 40, 50 dollar range.

Works been slow since winter so at the moment I don't have to much cash. But springs around the corner.

Thanks for all your info. I will decide what to do and hopefully make a good choice.

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March 27, 2009 at 07:47:40
I wouldn't bother with a processor upgrade. Your GF2 MX200 is pretty outdated so just about anything you get will be an improvement. You don't necessarily have to spend $100 on a new card, especially since AGP is a dying/dead format. I'm sure you could get away with a Radeon X1650Pro for about $40 & be reasonably happy with the performance depending the game. I see no reason to upgrade the soundcard. As for the PSU, you *may* be able to get away with what you have but if you decide to upgrade, get something decent that you can use for a future build. Then you can return your current system back to it's pre-upgraded status & sell it for $75 or so, or just keep it as a 2ndary machine.

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March 30, 2009 at 21:31:53
Yeah, I know what you mean. The price for a full upgrade would range between 230 and 280. Hell, with that amount I might as well build a much better computer.

I may just find a card that works good with this PSU. Like I said, there's plenty of games I could play until I could afford to build something better.

I could upgrade the motherboard, the PSU, RAM, Video card, a good PCI E, and a Dual Core CPU, but I would have to fork out a bit.

That might actually be a better route. I'm gonna look at some more prices and decide what to do. I may just stick with this crappy setup, wait until work picks up again and build something much better.

With how my current setup is, I can play Half Life 2 at a good framerate. Lowest resolution but I don't mind too much. I've been playing PS2 and Xbox at 480 for the longest time.

Thanks everyone for your advice. I will be back if I have any questions.


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March 30, 2009 at 23:59:27
No you wouldn't. Heck you could build an entire pc for under 310 dollars that will be a heck of a lot faster then what you got now. Heck i'll build one for you.

All of this came to 307 dollars and that is with everything. Some things on this list you may not need, so you could save yourself even more money.

ASRock A780FullHD AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard with ATI Radeon 3200 IGP - Retail

59 dollars.

AMD Athlon 64 X2 5200 Brisbane 2.7GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 65W Dual-Core Processor - Retail

55 dollars

WINTEC AMPX 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

19 dollars

Western Digital Caviar SE WD3200AAJS 320GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM

50 dollars.

LG Black DVD+/-RW SATA Burner - OEM

23 dollars

SUPER TALENT INTAIN1MCR All-in-one Card Reader - Retail

13 dollars

APEVIA ATX-CW500WP4 500W, +12V1@16A, +12V2@18A ATX Power Supply - Retail

35 dollars

COOLER MASTER Elite 330 RC-330-KKN1-GP Black SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

40 dollars

StarTech 18" SATA Drive Connection Cable -Retail

6.00 dollars

(Add two SATA Cables For Hard Drive and DVD+/-RW SATA connection.)

12.00 dollars

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April 30, 2009 at 15:57:07
Sorry I took so long to reply. Been busy lately.

I've decided to just rebuild. I could just use what I've got here.
The case I have is fairly large.

I would upgrade to a much better Motherboard, new CPU,
RAM, PSU and the Video.

I have a DVD burner and don't plan for BluRay anytime soon.
Hardrive is only 80 gb and newer games are much too large
for that size so that could be upgraded.

That's about it.

It shouldn't be too much for those things and would be better
than just updating this out of date system.

I have two questions though. Dual Core or Quad Core? Is
there motherboards that can handle both so I could upgrade
later if I so chose.

Also is video cards. Should I look for a board that has two,
maybe three PCI E x16 so I could use SLI? Or is it just a

Oh yeah, I have a Soundblaster Live! card. Will that work with
the newest games? I know a newer card like the XiFi would be
better, but I don't plan to fully upgrade just yet. And I don't
want to run into trouble trying to play new games. I would
hope that they kept compatibility with older cards.

Cobra R, thanks for your help but you don't have to spend
your time building me a PC. I'm sure I could figure it out.

And from the prices you've given me it would be about 170 for
the minimal I would need. The onboard video would be good
enough until I upgraded.

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May 3, 2009 at 13:28:17

I have the ATI Gecube X1950XT(AGP) and the card is huge. The whole point of this upgrade was to play crysis, i upgraded my power supply to 650w i think it is, but unfortunatley the card is no good as i get a pixalted screen and all these lines appear(normally when running too graphically demanding apps, and not just through games. I was using google earth the other day and pixels appeared on my screen but only in my browser not my desktop background, really dissapointed....been like this for a year now and i can no longer pwn up n00bs on my FPS's. it works i can use my pc and play old games, nothing much more then "guildwars" I would steer away from it the cooling is not too clever and heats all your case up internally, effecting other operating temps.

Ive looked at just about every driver available and checked that it wasent overheating, just so frustrated with it, but that was my bad experience, i will say if it worked it would pwn.

Im looking for a cheap Nvidia card and going greens as this has been my 2nd ATI card that has failed. just seems such a shame to waste the card, my opnion i think it was faulty from new via ebay(be wary).

cost me £101.00 about 1 year ago now.


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May 3, 2009 at 21:47:19
I heard that Nvidia might bring Directx 10 to AGP but as of now, I
think ATI is the only one to have Directx 10 on AGP. I don't know
if I really want to worry about that though. I would have to install
Vista. My sis has plenty of problems running older games on
Vista. I would have to do a dual boot.

I was thinking a Geforce 7600 agp. I think that's the latest agp
that they've made. But if I upgrade my motherboard, I won't have
to worry about not have pci e. So that's what I probably will do.

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May 5, 2009 at 09:17:46
The X1950XT maybe the fastest card, but that’s only the core it doesn't always mean its the card that performs better. The latest/best AGP card available is ATI's HD 3850 which I think just sits below the maximum speed of the AGP bus which is 2GB/Sec as compared to PCI-Express which is nearer to 8GB/Sec.

The HD series have newer technology and would benefit you more then the older cards, altho it is always better to buy the flagship for end of line of cards then the new one's of the next generation cards.

I would also consider checking out the HD 2600 XT which is probably the best option as its around £50 maybe less and the single-core systems fully utilize all of its potential, as for the HD 3850 there is suspicion that single-cores do not do this although don’t let that put you off it. As for NVIDIA you can take many approach’s to this buy a 7900GT and OC it to GTX speeds and be stable.

It really is mind boggling, there is so much and people vary in their opnions, in the end its down to you. I am looking at 7900 Nvid and also these HD 3850 and 2600XT, im in simliar situation as your trying to decide on what card and then people saying get PCI-E (Yes we will one day) but i have the X1950XT but its faulty, I really am gutted, but i wont dwell on it.

I would even sell my GeCube X1950XT AGP for £50 if anyone is interested, it works fine, like there is not a problem but say when you goto play heavy game the screen pixaltes and lines appear, tried just about every driver and i dont think its overheating.

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May 25, 2009 at 14:09:02
I found that there is a Geforce 7950 AGP card. Also ATI's
Sapphire HD 3850, runs on Directx 10 and is still AGP.

My processor is too slow to handle those cards though. I
bought a decent psu off my friend and found a Geforce4 Ti
4800 online for 10 dollars. I spent only 30 dollars. Thats
enough to keep me happy until I upgrade. Found some
motherboard, cpu, ram combos on eBay at decent prices.
Besides a better graphics card that's all I need to upgrade.
There's good cheap cards in the Geforce 9 series at
TigerDirect. They're not actually cheap cards though.

I should have a new job soon so that'll help me out.

Thanks for all the help everyone.

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May 26, 2009 at 11:17:48
What a nice thread to read on! Ample information is available in internet today.

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