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MCUSA

Question about potential graphics card upgrade

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Hi everyone! Just was testing the waters on this but thought I'd ask - I just saw this graphics card posted and it looks very tempting:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814487071

I have had my Dell XPS 8300 for many years (12 gb ram, Intel i7, 1.5 TB hard drive) and have been using a graphics card similar to this one: http://www.amazon.com/EVGA-GeForce-Mini-HDMI-Graphics-02G-P3-1568-KR/dp/B005760836/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1411710960&sr=8-4&keywords=evga+geforce+gtx+560+2gb

How hard do you think it'd be to install the 970 into my computer? I understand a beefier power supply would probably be needed (the other one I believe only permits 460W) but I've heard that the XPS 8300 supposedly can't work with any graphics cards past the Dell 500 range - any thoughts? Here's a link though that gives me a bit of hope: http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-2103153/dell-xps-8300-evga-geforce-gtx-750ti.html

While I'm at it, how good do you think this card would work with triple screens and/or with handling sims like Assetto Corsa, rFactor 2, etc.?

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I wouldn't do it Marc. First concern is power. Is it using a 20 pin or 24 pin EATX power supply? What is the mobo Dell has specificed in the machine? Dell is known for using puny power supplies (no slam, just fact) and you'd need to have the right connectors to power that card. Second is thermal considerations. Even though the new NVIDIA cards are touting lower temps and thermal requirements, the ventilation on that case would be a concern. If it were me, I'd suggest putting the original card back in if you have it, selling what you have on eBay in the next few weeks as a Christmas computer, and selling the video card as a separate item. I'm guessing you could probably get $400-450 for the computer and $75 for the card. Then build a new one (less monitor and keyboard) for $1200. Newegg has huge discounts on components during their Black Friday Thanksgiving sale. If building new isn't a good idea now, wait until you can build new and live with the 8300 as is.

/two cents

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I wouldn't do it Marc. First concern is power. Is it using a 20 pin or 24 pin EATX power supply? What is the mobo Dell has specificed in the machine? Dell is known for using puny power supplies (no slam, just fact) and you'd need to have the right connectors to power that card. Second is thermal considerations. Even though the new NVIDIA cards are touting lower temps and thermal requirements, the ventilation on that case would be a concern. If it were me, I'd suggest putting the original card back in if you have it, selling what you have on eBay in the next few weeks as a Christmas computer, and selling the video card as a separate item. I'm guessing you could probably get $400-450 for the computer and $75 for the card. Then build a new one (less monitor and keyboard) for $1200. Newegg has huge discounts on components during their Black Friday Thanksgiving sale. If building new isn't a good idea now, wait until you can build new and live with the 8300 as is.

/two cents

I'm with Doug here. Don't try to upgrade that computer, will only end in tears.

I would go for something like this when you have the money:

CPU: intel I5 4460

MB: Asus Z97-A

RAM: Any 2x8GB DDR3 like Crucial Ballistix Sport 1600Mhz

HD: a 1TB drive

CASE: Corsair Carbide 330R / 200R

GFX: nVidia GTX970

OS: Win 8.1

PSU: Cooler Master G650M 650W or similar

Some where around $900-$1000

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Thanks, probably will be a while then (or might use the laptop which could work with triple-screens)

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or....

Buy a new case, a new power supply (they're about all 20+4 pins for 20pin or 24pin configuration, and move everything into the new case with the new power supply and video card.

I've moved a lot of configs into new cases over the years. HP, Dell, Gateway, etc.

Only other suggestion would be to spend a little extra and get a good Samsung Pro SSD to use as your OS drive. Overall you'd still be several hundred, if not more, ahead of buying an entirely new system that you'll gain nothing more from by doing this.

And from what I've seen, that 970 is awesome bang for buck. Definitely a good choice.

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Chris has a good idea Marc to rip out the good stuff from your existing rig and put it in a new one. You're in a tough spot because an i7-2600 is still a strong CPU. If you're going for a new GPU, that's a wash. You can use your existing optical drive -- presuming it is SATA and not a ribbon cable PATA drive. The HDD is good as a secondary and Chris is absolutely right about a small SSD for the OS. And SSDs are getting very reasonable. You may or may not need a new mobo but I'd probably suggest it just to get newer than 2010 tech. A Corsair PS and case would be the only thing lacking. If you're not up for building it yourself, we can spec the parts and you could take them to a local screwdriver shop to bolt together. Most of them charge $100 to stick the hardware together if you walk in with parts. It would take them 90 minutes at most to do it turnkey. Then sell the left over parts on eBay.

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...or might use the laptop which could work with triple-screens

Ehhh, no. smile

Unless you have a real hot rod gaming laptop like some of the Sager notebooks/laptops you won't have enough GPU to crank 3 screens. Chris and Darren can confirm this since both are deep into multi-screen sim systems, but unless you're willing to trade your current quality of image for more screen space, you'll need something comparable to the 970 (or the earlier 780s). Matter-of-fact (looking to Chris, Darren...) usually if it is 3 screens it automatically makes it a dual GPU requirement, with either a 2 GPU card in one slot or dual GPU cards (SLI, Crossfire) in 2 slots. You can run 3 screens with a one GPU card, and people do, but it depends what level of graphics quality you're willing to live with. Pushing more pixels around on a one GPU card is going to cost either image quality, resolution, or both.

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Originally Posted By: MCUSA
...or might use the laptop which could work with triple-screens

Ehhh, no. smile

Unless you have a real hot rod gaming laptop like some of the Sager notebooks/laptops you won't have enough GPU to crank 3 screens. Chris and Darren can confirm this since both are deep into multi-screen sim systems, but unless you're willing to trade your current quality of image for more screen space, you'll need something comparable to the 970 (or the earlier 780s). Matter-of-fact (looking to Chris, Darren...) usually if it is 3 screens it automatically makes it a dual GPU requirement, with either a 2 GPU card in one slot or dual GPU cards (SLI, Crossfire) in 2 slots. You can run 3 screens with a one GPU card, and people do, but it depends what level of graphics quality you're willing to live with. Pushing more pixels around on a one GPU card is going to cost either image quality, resolution, or both.

hahaha I got a Sager at the end of last year with a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M 4GB GDDR5, 16 GB of RAM, i7-4700MQ, the works thumbsup

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Very good! Yeah then go for it! Can you borrow a couple of monitors to check performance before you go buy them?

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Not 100% sure - don't they all have to match?

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Don't have to, but it is advised. But you could get by with a test session just to confirm it has enough grunt to do what you want.

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