Graphics card hurting display quality??

Dell Dimension™ 2350 desktop
December 10, 2010 at 17:49:52
Specs: Windows XP Version 2002 SP 2, Intel Pentium 4 3.2 GHz 4 GB DDR2 RAM
In building a new computer I ended up with, among other compnents, a Cooler Master 500 watt power supply and an NVidia GeForce 8400 GS graphics card. When I bought these from Best buy.com, I though they would be compatible because the only power requirement listed for the card was 350+watt supply, and I'm using 500watt. When I got them both, I read on the video card box "requires 350watt power supply with minimum 20amp draw on the +12V rail" But my supply only draws 18amps at 12V. I was told this wouldn't be a problem because that is the max draw and it may use as little as half that for basic displays. My problems occurred when I tried to launch Microsoft Flight sim 10. My framerate which were about 15 with the on board graphics plunged to around 2 fps. Since I'm using all the same settings, ram processor, etc I figured it had to be the graphics card, but I don't know how a graphics card with 512MB memory and other impressive sounding stats I can't remember right now could be out performed by on board graphics. I figured it had to be because there wasn't enough power available, I just wanted to confirm thats it. I'm currently only using one monitor (out of three available outputs on the card) have 4GB of RAM and a 3.2GHz intel pentium. Is my power the problem? If not, other suggestions? Thanks in advance.

See More: Graphics card hurting display quality??

Report •


#1
December 10, 2010 at 18:02:40
I can't trust anything printed on power supplies. If it says "requires 350watt power supply with minimum 20amp " then you need to have more than that.

I can't say for sure what is wrong though with your setup. Might get gpu-z and cpu-z to offer more clues. Maybe the program isn't using the correct directx or not made for gpu or what I don't know.

Run some other graphic tests.

Why did it take me over a year to phone in a problem to ATT?


Report •

#2
December 10, 2010 at 19:30:58
Thanks for your response, but all GPU-z is telling me is just the clock speeds and temp, nothing that really solves my problem. All I can really think of as the problem is that the power isn't enough, but if the 20amp is what it needs at max performance, the 18 I have should be enough for it to only be running one monitor out of up to 3. And since my power supply has over current protection, shouldn't it just shut off if it even tried to draw over 18 amps?

Report •

#3
December 10, 2010 at 19:42:20
U don't have a gaming system(because of p4 and 8400gs). 8400gs isn't a gaming card and it use only 26.4W(2.2A) underload. 350w +12v@20A is the power requirement for the whole system not for the v-card alone.
U need two things
-dual core cpu
-gaming video card (start with this first).

We can not fight new wars with old weapons, let he who desires piece prepare for war - PROPHET.


Report •

Related Solutions

#4
December 10, 2010 at 19:48:50
I know I don't have what would technically be defined as a gaming system, but I know I have enough because 1. It worked fine with the onboard graphics, so it should only go up with the new card and 2. I've run the same program without issues on a computer with a 2Ghz processor and 2GB of ram and my processor is dual core- http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Intel%2...

If the power for the whole system needs to be 12V/20 amps, wouldn't the computer simply shut down if it ran out of juice at 18? the power supply has overcurrent protection, so if it tried to draw too much shouldn't this kick in and cut the power?


Report •

#5
December 10, 2010 at 20:06:35
"512MB memory and other impressive sounding stats"?

The 8400 GS is NOT impressive at all. Not only is it two generations old, but it is extremely low end. If you were at all familiar with video card stats, you would know that the 8400 GS is NOT a good card for gaming. Have a look at the following artcile:

Best Graphics Cards For The Money: November 2010

As for your power supply, 500W means next to nothing. Amperage distribution across the +3.3v, +5v & +12v rails is what matters. Being that the 8400 GS is such a low end card, you should have absolutely no problem with the Cooler Master 500W. And I'd bet if you look at the specs on the label, you'd find that it has two +12v rails at 18A each. That's plenty more power than you need.

As for the 350W power supply recommendation, that is for an entire system with an 8400 GS, not for the 8400 GS alone. The 8400 GS pulls about 40W max. Here's a comparison of the 8400 GS to a modern (but inexpensive) Geforce gaming card, the GT 240 w/GDDR5 memory:

http://www.hwcompare.com/graphics/c...

And here's a GT 240 for just $35 after rebate:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...


Report •

#6
December 10, 2010 at 20:12:03
I thought u have p4 3.2ghz. E6700 is good cpu(gaming cpu). It worked fine(15fps isn't fine) with IGP because u turned off many settings(low settings). Did u install latest driver from nvidia website? Try to run the game using low settings(800 x 600). V-cards manufactures always use higher power requirements for e.g. The power requirents for running 9800gt is 450w +12v@26A but u can run it fine with only 400w +12v@10A. I believe the cooler master psu have multiple +12v rails(look at psu label). The problem isn't psu but v-card.

We can not fight new wars with old weapons, let he who desires piece prepare for war - PROPHET.


Report •

#7
December 10, 2010 at 20:32:12
You really need to stop buying your computer hardware at BestBuy. You're paying WAY too much.

Report •

#8
December 10, 2010 at 20:42:32
Yes I know that in the grand scheme of video cards 8400GS isn't on top, but it has 4 times the minimum memory for what I need so its good enough for me. As for "other impressive sounding stats" I still meant that there were other things (speed, etc) that while once again not on top of the world, were well above the minimums for my purposes. If my power supply is sufficient, what else could the problem be? I noticed the software is designed for DirectX9 but the card has 10, is it possible for an update to result in incompatibility? But if that were the case wouldn't the game not display at all? I'm open to any suggestion as long as they don't involve hacksaws+my computer in any way. Basically the problem is that the graphics card displays the desktop, basic games (stock pinball) and basic software with ease, but when I try to launch a more powerful game (Microsoft flight sim 10), for which it should be more then sufficient, the onboard graphics processor out performs it.

Report •

#9
December 10, 2010 at 20:51:08
Big reply to the most recent posts from mickliq and kuwese. Yes I know that one should never buy computer parts at Best Buy, I just made an exception here because I had $220 dollars of gift cards that otherwise would have gone unused. As for the game working well with IGP, its not because I turned down settings, I'm using the same setting with both and they are fairly high. I would try 800x600, but the lowest the game will run is 1024x768. I did install the drivers from the CD included with VC, but I will look for updates. Still open to any suggestions if anyone reading this sees. Thanks

Report •

#10
December 10, 2010 at 20:56:11
The CoolerMaster PS probably has at least TWO, or more, +12v current ratings - if it does, add them together !

If this system has all new components, your abysmal frame rates in MFS 10 are far less than they should be, even for a 8400 GS !

XP doesn't have the drivers built in for most things that first came out after XP was first released, circa 2001, and it doesn't have some of the drivers built in for things made before that.

Whenever you load Windows from a regular Windows CD (or DVD) from scratch, after Setup is finished you must load the drivers for the mboard, particularly the main chipset drivers, in order for Windows to have the proper drivers for and information about your mboard hardware, including it's AGP or PCI-E, ACPI, USB 2.0 if it has it, and hard drive controller support. If you have a generic system and have the CD that came with the mboard, all the necessary drivers are on it. If you load drivers from the web, brand name system builders and mboard makers often DO NOT have the main chipset drivers listed in the downloads for your model - in that case you must go to the maker of the main chipset's web site, get the drivers, and load them.

Did you load the main chipset drivers ?
If you didn't, your hard drives and optical drives are probably NOT running as fast as they should !
.......

Look at the setting for Primary Video or Intialize Video First or similar in the bios Setup
If your 8400 GS is a PCI-E X 16 card, that should be set to PCI-E or similar; if it's a PCI card, that should be set to PCI .
If that is set to PCI and the card is a PCI-E X16 card, the software for the card in Windows will NOT be able to use the enhanced PCI-E features of the card, and the performance of the card will be poor in comparison to when that setting is set to PCI-E or similar.
........

Did you install your video and sound "drivers" properly ?

If you didn't, the improper installation of one or both of those can slow down the performance of your computer considerably !

Sound and video "drivers" always have associated files that must be installed properly along with the actual drivers. If you install only the actual drivers, it's likely the device will NOT work properly.

Unless the instructions for installing a device tell you otherwise....
(this ALWAYS applies to video and sound adapters )

You DO NOT install drivers for a device while booting into Windows, if the software for the device has not been installed yet - when Windows detects a generic device or New Hardware while booting, you allow it to search for drivers, it doesn't find any, and it wants you to show it the location of the drivers - CANCEL that, continue on to the desktop, and install the software for the device using the proper installation from a CD or the proper installation file that you downloaded from the web.
The same applies no matter when Windows finds New Hardware !

If you DID install drivers that way,

(The following also applies if you want to un-install previous software, or re-install the same software)

- for video "drivers"....

- go to Control Panel - Classic View - Add/Remove Programs and Un-install the software you installed, reboot, DO NOT install drivers while booting, let the desktop screen fully load.

Install the video software properly by running the proper download you got from the web, or if you have the CD that came with the video card that's in a slot, or if you have the CD that came with the brand name computer that has the Drivers on it, run the video software installation from the installation program on that.

for sound adapter drivers...

- go to Control Panel - Classic View - Add/Remove Programs and Un-install the software you installed, reboot, DO NOT install drivers while booting.

- go to Device Manager.
(e.g. RIGHT click on My Computer - Properties - Hardware - Device Manager)
If the sound adapter is still listed, RIGHT click on it and Un-install it.
If that was there, and you un-installed it, Reboot at least once.
DO NOT install drivers while booting.

Install the sound software properly by running the proper download you got from the web, or if you have the CD that came with the sound card, or if you have the CD that came with the brand name computer that has the Drivers on it, run the sound software installation from the installation program on that.


Report •

#11
December 10, 2010 at 21:04:17
Better see this http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews...

We can not fight new wars with old weapons, let he who desires piece prepare for war - PROPHET.


Report •

#12
December 10, 2010 at 21:19:26
Just like wattage isn't the most important spec when choosing a power supply, memory amount is not the most important spec when choosing a video card. Almost all video cards these days have either 512MB or 1024MB, but the memory type, speed & buswidth are what's important. There's DDR2, GDDR2, DDR3, GDDR3, GDDR5 & the most common buswidths are 64-bit, 128-bit, 192-bit, 256-bit, 512-bit. Your card uses slow 64-bit DDR2 memory. But that's only one of the many video card specs that need to be taken into consideration.

As for what your performance problem may be (other than the sh!tty card), did you uninstall the integrated graphics drivers before you installed the card? Did you enter the BIOS & disable the integrated? Did you set the "shared memory" amount to zero? Did you change the "Initial display" to PCI-express? As kuwese asked, did you install the latest available graphics drivers from the nvidia website? And since you mentioned this is a new build, did you install the latest motherboard chipset drivers?

As for your question about DX10, WinXP doesn't support it & never will. It's not a factor.


Report •

#13
December 10, 2010 at 21:23:42
Hey, I just noticed at the top of the original post - "Dell Dimension™ 2350 desktop". The 2350 doesn't support the E6700 or DDR2 RAM so I assume you're asking about a completely different system? Post the make/model of your motherboard.

http://support.dell.com/support/edo...


Report •

#14
December 11, 2010 at 07:07:36
"Did you enter the BIOS & disable the integrated? Did you set the "shared memory" amount to zero?"

In most cases, unless the mboard has onboard video and also has the Hybrid video feature, the bios disables the onboard video automatically when you install a video card in a PCI-E X16 slot and ignores the shared memory setting.


Report •

#15
December 11, 2010 at 07:52:11
Thanks for all your help and suggestions, but for now I think I'm just going to start over fresh- reinstall OS. (The card was advertised as compatible with XP, Vista and 7, but the box says "built for windows vista" so I'm switching) If that doesn't work I'll repost, but hopefully that won't be necessary.
Just one thing I wanted to let a few of you know- this card is PCI not PCI-E, everytime you've said something about changing anything to PCI-E I just did whatever you said as if you had PCI, if you actually did mean PCI-E for some reason, please let me know. Thanks

Report •

#16
December 11, 2010 at 08:52:54
If the card is PCI, then you set the setting for Primary Video or similar in the bios Setup to PCI, Save bios settings, if it isn't already set that way. If the mboard has onboard video, that setting should NOT be set to onboard video or similar.
The same video chipset on a PCI-E X 16 card will always perform better than when it's on a PCI card.

Report •

#17
December 11, 2010 at 19:35:04
Would a GeForce 9400 GT PCI-E, 1GB DDR2 be sufficient?

Report •

#18
December 11, 2010 at 20:47:35
9400gt isn't a gaming card, look for RADEON HD 5570 with GDDR5.

We can not fight new wars with old weapons, let he who desires piece prepare for war - PROPHET.


Report •

#19
December 11, 2010 at 21:04:10
Lets put it this way, stop naming what I need and just answer my question. I am not and cannot spend over $85 on a v-card, so 9400gt is about as much as I can get. Suggestions within that price range are acceptable

Report •

#20
December 11, 2010 at 21:07:30
Don't get a better video card yet.

Your poor performance in MFS 10 may be due solely to you not installing the main chipset drivers, or not installing the video or audio "drivers" correctly.
You probably don't need to re-install Windows - just make sure you install the main chipset drivers, and try un-installing the video and audio drivers and installing them again properly as I mentioned above. That may yield you much better video performance, all on it's own.

By the way, I see you have 4gb of ram installed. You probably have the 32bit version of Windows XP if it's Home or MCE, or if you have Pro if it's not 64 bit (usually it isn't).
In that case, if you can install 3gb of ram rather than 4, your Windows installation will probably perform better.

The 4gb virtual memory address limit for 32 bit operating systems.
An example of 3gb working better than 4gb in a 32 bit operating system.

See Response 6:
http://www.computing.net/answers/ha...
....

If you do decide to load a newer operating system, if you don't already have Vista, don't bother buying it - get Windows 7 instead - the OEM version is the cheapest, and it's very similar to Vista with many of the things that annoyed people about Vista removed or improved. Vista drivers can almost always be also be used for Windows7 too if no Windows 7 drivers are listed. If you want be able to support 4gb or more ram installed in the mboard properly, use or get the 64bit version, not the 32bit version.

XP supports DirectX 9.x software, max, and that's what it comes with. Video card chipsets may support DirectX 10 or 11, but the DirectX software for that is only available in or can be installed from the Microsoft web site for Vista or Windows 7.
DirectX 9.x in XP auto replaces DirectX 10 and 11 ONLY features with simpler ones - it will likely only do that when you play high end video games.
Otherwise, if anything, your 8400 video card is likely to perform a little slower in Vista or Windows 7 than it does in XP with the same amount of ram installed on the mboard.

Most people don't benefit from more than 3 or 4gb of ram in any case.
Memory Assessor
How much memory do you really need?
http://www.kingston.com/tools/asses...


Report •

#21
December 11, 2010 at 22:00:09
As I already told you - STOP buying your hardware at BestBuy!!! If you pay anywhere near $85 for a 9400GT, you're a sucker. That's twice as much as it's worth. Newegg has a Radeon HD 4650 on sale for just $20 ($35 - $15 rebate), no tax & free shipping. This card is vastly superior to both the 8400GS & the 9400GT.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

And why did you wait until response #15 to tell us that the 8400GS was a standard PCI card? What a waste of time this has been.


Report •

#22
December 11, 2010 at 22:08:41
How's this one? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

PCI-E, 64bit, GDDR2


Report •

#23
December 11, 2010 at 22:49:37
OMG! Now you're looking at the even older 7000 series? Do you know nothing about video cards?? Since you seen to prefer nvidia over ATI, I would think you'd at least be familiar with the naming convention. The 1st digit in the model number is the series. The 2nd digit is the performance level. The lower the 2nd digit, the lower the performance. And whatever you do, do NOT buy a card that uses Turbocache!

"PCI-E, 64bit, GDDR2"

What about the rest of the specs? That card only has 4 PixelPipelines & the memory only runs at 266MHz (533MHz effective). PixelPipelines is old technology - it has been replaced by stream processors. Keep looking.


Report •

#24
December 12, 2010 at 07:55:23
I notice the ATI you linked earlier is a PCI-E 2.o interface, compatible with this mb? http://www.bestbuy.com/site/MSI+-+M...

Report •

#25
December 12, 2010 at 08:39:40
That mboard model probably supports cards with the PCI-E 2.0 specs, or higher, but you're not necessarily going to find that info in an ad.
Go to the MSI web site and look at the detailed specs and/or the mboard manual for the model.

Report •

#26
December 12, 2010 at 14:20:09
Please learn how to post links.

Report •

#27
December 12, 2010 at 14:31:48
I think I know how to post links. For example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQw4... Not just a random vid either its actually pretty funny And it serves as an example of my ability to post a link

Report •

#28
December 12, 2010 at 14:48:50
Try clicking on your BestBuy links (clear your browser cache 1st) then tell me you know what you're doing. Try this one: Memory Dump

Report •

#29
December 12, 2010 at 16:56:36
Just to let everyone know, I returned the 8400 today, and will be purchasing the ATI as soon as I can. Thanks for your help

Report •

#30
December 12, 2010 at 19:17:34
The one you linked earlier looked good at first, but some reviews on New Eggs suggested it still might not be enough. Hows this:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131360

its got PCI-E, and 1gb of 128bit DDR3 RAM and its ATI


Report •

#31
December 12, 2010 at 20:35:00
U are very stubborn. Iam glad u are learning now, go ahead and buy that hd 4650 (128bit, ddr3).

We can not fight new wars with old weapons, let he who desires piece prepare for war - PROPHET.


Report •


Ask Question