OK i think i'm gonna upgrade my video card.
the current card is a Asus based on Nvidia GeForce 2 GTS 32MB.
the fan had died and the replacement service had put on it is very loud. rather than replace it i though i'd get a very cheap card. i see that many of them come with passive cooling - good!
i'm not a gamer so that isn't important, though i wouldn't mind playing a game once in a while. but i don't have the newest games anyway. (i have unreal tournament 2003 still in shrink-wrap
important to me is clear text quality @ 1600x1200 resolution (and Normal size 96 DPI) & 85Hz refresh rate on my 19" Sony screen (including for instance the ismall con text on teh desktop at this resolution).
scanning a few online stores in my country, i see that the cheapest cards are one of:
ATI Radeon 9250, ATI Radeon 9550, Nvidia GeForce 4 MX 4000, Nvidia GeForce FX5600.
1. any significant differences between these chipsets? or are they all roughly the same? (i think the GeForce 4 MX4000 is the oldest and weakest, no?)
2. if gaming performance is of no concern at all, does it matter which of the above chipsets? and if a little gaming is in order which is better?
is the difference between ATI's 9250 and 9550 significant for gaming or any other usage?
3. some sales person told me that the ATIs are "64 bit" and the Nvidia FX5600 is "128 bit". i guess he's talking about memory bus width ? does it matter at all?
4. one of the candidates (cheapest) is this EPoX card:
$55 cheapest i could find.
or maybe EV-A955-LD8 http://www.epox.com.tw/eng/products_content.php?ps=329
there are a few of the cheap cards in the $55-60 range.
but i can't find any info about them in EPoX's website. you can't download anything - manual, BIOS, drivers, nothing!
what i want to know is: resolution, refresh rate capabilities etc. are these properties of the card or of the chipset? if i look at some other card built on the same chipset, can i infer from that card's specs to this one? (i'm assuming all are roughly similar, probably nearly identical to the reference cards from the chipset makers- these are after all the cheapest cards).
the FX5600 candidate is the Gainward PRO/660 TV/DVI GF FX 5200 http://www.gainward.de/new/products/agp ... rison.html
$60 hmm..Gainward's website says it's 64MB but online vendor says 128MB linke the EPoXs. also Gainward's website has no info on memory bandwidth??? (EPoX says 64 bit ???) or resolutions or refresh rates.
5. there's another FX5200 card by Albatron. never heard of this company. are they OK?
6. been told once by a friend that Radeon 9600 is a good chipset. is there any advantage to it over the others i mentioned apart from better gaming capabilities?
7. the motherboard is Nvidia Nforce2 chipset. will i have conflict problems if i get an ATI based graphics card ?
any suggestions/ideas/comments, however brief, are much appreciated.
sorry for lot's of noob questions.
but i really don't have the time to research this stuff. i just want to get a new card quickly without too much hassle. i'm counting on help from my friends here at CDRLabs.