AGP Video Card Help

Dell / DIMENSION 2400
March 29, 2009 at 13:16:02
Specs: Microsoft Windows XP Professional, 2.392 GHz / 766 MB
I have another computer lying around that I would like to work on so I can get my brother off my PC and onto this one. It has integrated graphics, but won't run Halo because it doesn't have the video memory for it, so my only option is to get a new video card for it. I have an AGP card lying around that is really old (1998). I have heard something about using the PC's RAM as video memory but don't know how that works or if it is possible for this video card. The things written on the chip are as follows (In the same order, up-and-down):

3D RAGE PRO AGP
215R3DAUA22
B9171
9743AA
TAIWAN

I read that Halo needs a 32 MB video card to run, and I know this isn't that, but if I can use the system memory as video memory, would this be possible to play Halo? Thanks for any help!

Will
Free Computer Help: http://www.william234.co.nr/
"Sorry for ranting. I seem to do that a lot!" -ME


See More: AGP Video Card Help

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#1
March 29, 2009 at 13:44:11
If the card doesn't have 32mb of ram, no, it won't be good enough for Halo.

Only a video chipset built into the mboard shares the ram installed on the mboard, the onboard video is a.k.a. a display adapter or a graphics adapter or a video chipset but it's NOT a CARD, and in almost all cases, when you install an actual video card in a slot that disables the onboard video and all settings in the bios regarding sharing the ram with the onboard video are then ignored by the mboard bios.

A video card (cards are removable and plugged directly into a mboard slot or connector, inside the case) has it's own memory on the card itself, and does not share the ram installed on the mboard

3D Rage is an ATI video chipset.
If the card was actually made in 1998 the card was made by ATI, but on the other hand the chipset may have been patented in 1998, and the card may have been made later by other than ATI.
XP probably will detect that 3D Rage chipset automatically and already has the drivers and will install them when the card is installed.

In any case the card supports only 1X, 2X AGP.
Your mboard must support 2X AGP - many newer mboards cannot, and some newer mboards will be damaged if you install a 2 X AGP capable card.

If you tell us the model of the brand name system, or the mboard if it's a generic system, we can tell you what card with what minimum chipset or greater you need to use.


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#2
March 29, 2009 at 13:48:19
You cannot use system memory with a plug-in AGP card. It comes with its own memory and can't use anything else. System memory is only used when the video hardware is built into the motherboard.

If I remember correctly the later versions of the ATI Rage Pro came with 64 Mb of memory so I would try it and see. It will have 32 Mbs at least. Windows XP has driver for it and it should install without any problems.

Stuart


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#3
March 29, 2009 at 13:57:45
I've seen Rage Pro cards with 4Mb, 8Mb and 16Mb memory. If yours doesn't work out look for something like this one...

http://www.pcsurplusonline.com/view...

Try to find something locally in a Mom and Pop pc store; I wouldn't pay more than $6.00 to 8.00.

Skip


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#4
March 29, 2009 at 13:59:00
@TubesandWires

Okay, thanks for the info. Doesn't the fact that the video chip set on the MoBo sharing system memory mean that since there is 512 MB of RAM on that PC, I should essentially have a video chip set with the amount of RAM I have free? Then why is Halo reporting the chipset as 16 MB? I was Googleing and found a couple things about sharing system memory with AGP video cards. Is there any case that this would be possible? (I mean, sharing system memory with ANY video card)

@StuartS

This is a different card than the one you are thinking about. The one you are thinking about is a PCI card, ATI Rage DIABLOTEK 128PRO 32MB PCI Video Card. (I know because I am reading it straight off the box) That card is from 1999-2000 ish. I have an ATI 3D Rage PRO that is from 1998. It is AGP but, thanks to you, I am going to try this AGP card out anyway because they are pretty close dates, meaning they MAY have the same amount of RAM. Who knows? I'll post the results when I try it out!

Thanks both of you!

Will
Free Computer Help: http://www.william234.co.nr/
"Sorry for ranting. I seem to do that a lot!" -ME


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#5
March 29, 2009 at 14:07:15
Okay, I have no idea what is going on. I have an AGP slot (I know because it says "AGP" under it) but the card (That also says "AGP" on it) doesn't fit. The slots don't line up. I am kinda guessing that testing with this card stops here.

Will
Free Computer Help: http://www.william234.co.nr/
"Sorry for ranting. I seem to do that a lot!" -ME


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#6
March 29, 2009 at 14:22:17
This is a great day! You know the ATI Rage 3D Pro I mentioned before, it didn't work. Thinking that I had nothing to lose, I went ahead and tried it in that computer and it works! I don't know what it is about this computer that makes it want to work. It is just that it didn't work in two other computers. Now I can get my brother off of my computer to play Halo on that computer! Thanks all of you!

Will
Free Computer Help: http://www.william234.co.nr/
"Sorry for ranting. I seem to do that a lot!" -ME


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#7
March 29, 2009 at 15:03:48
Please read what I said about using a 2X capable card on more recent mboards - you can DAMAGE some mboards when you install the card!!

"Okay, thanks for the info. Doesn't the fact that the video chip set on the MoBo sharing system memory mean that since there is 512 MB of RAM on that PC, I should essentially have a video chip set with the amount of RAM I have free?"

It doesn't work that way.
It doesn't use free ram -some of the ram is dedicated to be used with it.
Depending on how the mboard bios reports it, the amount of ram shared with the onboard video is often subtracted from the total mboard ram amount because it can't be used by the operating system or the user for data.
The amount of ram shared with the onboard video is either set to one setting and you can't change that, or it is set to a default setting and you can change that to a higher setting in the mboard's bios Setup. In any case it should never be set to more than 1/2 of the total ram installed on the mboard, and you usually can't set that anywhere near that anyway if you have a reasonable amount of ram installed.


" Then why is Halo reporting the chipset as 16 MB? "

If you mean the video ram amount, you may be able to increase the amount in the bios Setup settings, or not.

When you install a card in a slot, there's a 99% chance Halo is only going to be able to see and be able to use the ram on the card.

"I was Googleing and found a couple things about sharing system memory with AGP video cards"

99% of the time, that's not possible. because the mboard no longer shares the mboard ram when a video card is installed in a slot.

"Is there any case that this would be possible?
(I mean, sharing system memory with ANY video card)"

You certainly cannot share system memory with ANY, as in all, video cards (in slots) in any case, on any mboard, with any main chipset.

The only exceptions I know of are mboards with quite recent specific main chipsets, when used with PCI-E X16 video cards with certain specific video chipsets made by the same maker as the main chipset.
I know of no such thing for AGP cards.
E.g. AMD/ATI main chipsets call that a Hybrid feature - the card must have one of a few ATI video chipsets.
If the card doesn't have one of the specific video chipsets that can be used with the main chipset's Hybrid feature support, the onboard video is automatically disabled when you install a video card in a slot.

ATI has been using the RAGE name a long time.
The original RAGE 128bit series chipset cards came with 8, 16, or 32mb on the card, and were the first video cards with built in hardware DVD acceleration playback support. I have two - one of which is Rage Fury, the top model of the original 128bit series, made in Canada, TV out, 32mb was the only choice. The Rage Pro 128 bit series was the first ATI one that was 1X/2X/4X AGP - you can still get new cards with that chipset.



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#8
March 29, 2009 at 15:19:42
Okay. The motherboard is an ABIT-VA-20 (I believe.) I understand all that you are saying (surprisingly) and actually get it!

So, AGP cannot use system memory, but certain PCI-e x16 can. I will look around in the BIOS and try to find out a setting to change the on board video memory amount and then post back here. Thanks for all your help!

Will
Free Computer Help: http://www.william234.co.nr/
"Sorry for ranting. I seem to do that a lot!" -ME


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#9
March 29, 2009 at 15:52:40
Add in AGP cards don't use system memory but integrated AGP chips do use system memory.

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#10
March 29, 2009 at 15:52:47
You may not need the card at all.

Did you look in the bios Setup to see if you can set the amount of ram shared with the onboard video to 32mb or more?
......

"So, AGP cannot use system memory, but certain PCI-e x16 can.I will look around in the BIOS and try to find out a setting to change the on board video memory amount ...."

Don't even bother.

There's no such thing as a mboard with an AGP slot that has PCI-E X16 slots. They have one or the other, or neither.
.........

AGP Compliance Details including what several different slot types look like.
(This used to be on the AMD site in the ATI section and on the old ATI English web site but it's no longer there.)
http://support.amd.com/la/kbarticle...

Comparison of ATI graphics processing units
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compar...
There are also ones older than the oldest there that aren't listed.

General AGP info and the oddball AGP Pro slots that were used for only a few years:
http://www.ertyu.org/~steven_nikkel...


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#11
March 29, 2009 at 16:06:40
Tubes, have a look at the link below for a board with AGP & PCIex16.

There were quite a few boards made with both AGP & PCIe graphics at the beginning introduction of the PCIe graphics bus. They weren't great performers and some had restrictions on what cards would work, but they were made.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews...


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#12
March 29, 2009 at 16:14:27
OtheHill

I'll take your word for it.
I have never seen one myself and sites I have looked at said there was no such thing.
When I click on tomshardware.com links in 98SE it freezes my IE 6.x SP1. That's been the case for at least a couple of months

In any case, it's extremely unlikely he has any PCI-E X16 slots.


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#13
March 29, 2009 at 18:30:31
I agree with you that it is unlikely.

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#14
March 29, 2009 at 20:12:02
"The motherboard is an ABIT-VA-20 (I believe.) "

It can't be.
VA-20 can't support 1X/2X AGP cards.
VA-10 or VA-11 can't either.

If it's an Abit mboard, the model number is probably printed in obvious larger characters on the mboard surface.

Support and manual here:
http://www.abit.com.tw/page/en
Downloads
Change Motherboard to Socket A.


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#15
March 29, 2009 at 20:16:49
"The motherboard is an ABIT-VA-20 (I believe.) "

It can't be.
VA-20 can't support 1X/2X (3.3v) AGP cards.
VA-10 or VA-11 can't either.

If it's an Abit mboard, the model number is probably printed in obvious larger characters on the mboard surface.

Support and manual here:
http://www.abit.com.tw/page/en/inde...
Manuals on the left
Change Motherboard to Socket A, or whatever it has.


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#16
March 30, 2009 at 06:24:03
I couldn't quite remember what the board was. I will check in the BIOS tonight to see if I can change the on board video memory. Thanks!

Will
Free Computer Help: http://www.william234.co.nr/
"Sorry for ranting. I seem to do that a lot!" -ME


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