Skip navigation

video card question

Forum NavigationHome > Forum Index > Tread Marks > video card question
Level 14 Human bookkeeper
Alignment: True neutral
Location: Sacramento, CA, USA
Posted on February 13, 2011 at 5:38 pm

when i switched over to macs, 5 or 6 years ago, i stopped paying attention to the relentless march of pc hardware, especially video cards. however, i am still the person people talk to when they want to buy new computers. which is fine, i just tell people to go to discountpc.net for their new computer. i got my parent's new computer from them.... and i have bought computers from them for other people, and it has worked out well. $30 bucks for shipping, and for the price of the operating system, you get a relatively new computer plus the operating system.

so, when my brother, GA666, needed a new computer, cheaply, to replace the one that is currently giving him some minor problems, i got him a Dell Optiplex GX620 P4HT 2.8GHz (tower case). upgrade the RAM to 2GB and it's a pretty nice computer for the money. his editing of the TM videos should go much faster on this computer.

however, it has onboard video, and we need to get a video card for this Dell, and neither of us know anything about the current state of video cards. also, if you open up the case and look inside, there is not a lot of room for a video card. it has a PCIe slot for a video card, but i can not tell what type/version of PCIe it is, and my efforts to research this have been totally unsuccessful, and i think it is partially due to the fact that i have no idea what i am looking for... and i don't even know if the current PCIe video cards will even fit in the slot, and given the space constraints inside of the case....

it's like... my bro would need a small, low profile, fanless, PCIe graphics card that is basically a current card, that would fit in that slot, but i have no idea what that slot is and whether or not a current card would even work in that slot. and my attempts to look through the specs and reviews for video cards at different sites, page after page, has numbed my mushy apple brain, so i am hoping that some one can help us with this. lol =][= arghhh.

anyway, thanks for reading.
toodles,
harmless

Level 13 Human Cyb0rg tank pil0t:|@- ҉҈҉҈҉-§¹Ç--҉҈҉-
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Standby In Winters's North
Posted on February 13, 2011 at 6:52 pm

when i switched over to macs, 5 or 6 years ago, i stopped paying attention to the relentless march of pc hardware, especially video cards. however, i am still the person people talk to when they want to buy new computers. which is fine, i just tell people to go to discountpc.net for their new computer. i got my parent's new computer from them.... and i have bought computers from them for other people, and it has worked out well. $30 bucks for shipping, and for the price of the operating system, you get a relatively new computer plus the operating system.

so, when my brother, GA666, needed a new computer, cheaply, to replace the one that is currently giving him some minor problems, i got him a Dell Optiplex GX620 P4HT 2.8GHz (tower case). upgrade the RAM to 2GB and it's a pretty nice computer for the money. his editing of the TM videos should go much faster on this computer.

however, it has onboard video, and we need to get a video card for this Dell, and neither of us know anything about the current state of video cards. also, if you open up the case and look inside, there is not a lot of room for a video card. it has a PCIe slot for a video card, but i can not tell what type/version of PCIe it is, and my efforts to research this have been totally unsuccessful, and i think it is partially due to the fact that i have no idea what i am looking for... and i don't even know if the current PCIe video cards will even fit in the slot, and given the space constraints inside of the case....

it's like... my bro would need a small, low profile, fanless, PCIe graphics card that is basically a current card, that would fit in that slot, but i have no idea what that slot is and whether or not a current card would even work in that slot. and my attempts to look through the specs and reviews for video cards at different sites, page after page, has numbed my mushy apple brain, so i am hoping that some one can help us with this. lol =][= arghhh.

anyway, thanks for reading.
toodles,
harmless


i work with computers so i might be able to help you guys out

i've worked with similar models like the optiplex you have, they are mostly the same inside,it should be fine running TM and servers if you'd want to know that

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
now you say that you have a PCIe slot in the computer but you say this later on:

but i have no idea what that slot is and whether or not a current card would even work in that slot.

now if it is indeed a PCIe slot you should be able to add a decent 1st version compatible PCIe card from office depot or some place as long as you read the specifications of that card.

but if your not sure, that slot could be an agp card slot and you'll need to buy the correct agp card such as 8x or 4x e.t.c.

my question is have you read the Manuel of that dell optiplex? if so what does it say for all the technical info?

as the dell Manuel should explain how to open the computer, what slot it is and some photos could give me an idea of how much space you have to add a video card.

Level 14 Human bookkeeper
Alignment: True neutral
Location: Sacramento, CA, USA
Posted on February 13, 2011 at 7:22 pm

it's not AGP, it is PCIe, the BIOS said that.
the manual was unclear... just said it was an enhanced PCI slot...
and it was like... ok ... but no other details...
i imagine it is first version PCIe, but i could not find anything that
said what version of PCIe it is,
and i don't know if current PCIe cards are backwards compatible with
prior versions of PCIe slots... like the agp cards were.
i just remember that one could buy any agp card and it would fit
in any agp slot that was made... and i don't know if PCIe is that way.

oh, and when we opened it up and measured... there were only 8 or 9 inches
lengthwise for the card, and because of Dell's plastic thingies for air flow
direction, a tall card was just not going to fit.

Level 13 Human Cyb0rg tank pil0t:|@- ҉҈҉҈҉-§¹Ç--҉҈҉-
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Standby In Winters's North
Posted on February 15, 2011 at 6:03 pm

it's not AGP, it is PCIe, the BIOS said that.
the manual was unclear... just said it was an enhanced PCI slot...
and it was like... ok ... but no other details...
i imagine it is first version PCIe, but i could not find anything that
said what version of PCIe it is,
and i don't know if current PCIe cards are backwards compatible with
prior versions of PCIe slots... like the agp cards were.
i just remember that one could buy any agp card and it would fit
in any agp slot that was made... and i don't know if PCIe is that way.

oh, and when we opened it up and measured... there were only 8 or 9 inches
lengthwise for the card, and because of Dell's plastic thingies for air flow
direction, a tall card was just not going to fit.


well the most i can really help you with is that you need to figure out what version of pcie your motherboard supports. if the manuel doesn't help, i suggest looking up a program called speccy, and also search if anyone else might have this same problem

if you need a good site to obtain graphics cards i would recommend www.newegg.com

that's were i get all my computer stuff

Level 14 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on February 15, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Looking at google, looks like it has a mixed PCI and PCIe motherboard. Given the age, first gen PCIe, but I think most stuff is backwards compatible to that, but make sure on the product specs. Nice "new" circa 2005 system :p

Do any of these look like your insides? http://www.google.com/images?um=1&hl=en&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&biw=2560&bih=1450&tbs=isch%3A1&sa=1&q=dell+optiplex+%22gx620%22+motherboard&aq=f&aqi=g1&aql=f&oq=

As for video cards...basically grab any low end PCIe video card should be good. Also, make sure whatever you grab the power supply can support (inc. external power sources if needed). The CPU and bus aren't fast enough to really take advantage of the high speed video cards.

Also noticed during a little googling that it sounds like air flow is an issue with that system...so make sure not to get too hot a card.

Level 14 Human bookkeeper
Alignment: True neutral
Location: Sacramento, CA, USA
Posted on February 16, 2011 at 1:11 am

well... i guess after thinking about it for a bit.... my main concern
is the backward compatibility...

and just now, i remembered that there is one true source for all information
on the internet... wikipedia ;)

it's a great place for discographies, and for some basic information.
PCIe has versions 1.0a, 1.1, 2.0, 2.1, and version 3.0 was finalized back in nov 2010.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI_Express

and it appears that backwards compatibility has been built in. if it fits in the slot,
than it should work. ymmv

it's just kind of odd.... i have yet to buy a PCIe video card, and never had an occasion
to even research them, shoot, it was just this last year that i finally bought and installed
a SATA hard drive [ after carefully reading the instructions ] lol... 10 years ago, i was totally
into computers and even had a job as an IT guy... anyway, thanks for the help, guess i should
stop being old, bitter, and lazy, and go find a card for my bro.

toodles,
harmless

Level 9 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posted on March 9, 2011 at 2:03 am

This was for me...thanks harmless. I guess I should read the post then.

Level 13 Human gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on March 14, 2011 at 10:27 pm

Harmless,
I had good luck and good performance in TM when using an ATI HD2400 in a Dell Optiplex GX620. That card is a few years old now. Anything that is more modern or recent than that should be even better.
HD2400s are about $55 on Pricewatch.com, so if you are wanting to define a low end, I think that would be it.
http://www.pricewatch.com/gallery/video_cards/radeon_hd_2400
I am currently running another older card, a Radeon X1950 Pro, which gets about 300 fps at high quality settings. The HD 2400 will do 1/3 to 1/2 of that (100 to 150 fps at high quality).
I have used lots of different video cards with TM. Let me know if you have any other questions.
[LWA]mELONcRACKER