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#1 Old 02-05-2009, 12:59 PM
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I'm building a computer. I am having a bit of trouble figuring out what's going on with video cards. Anyone can steer me in the right direction? I like to use google earth a lot. I don't play high-intensity video games or do animation, but I might like to do computer-aided drafting. I do spreadsheets and wordprocessing and web browsing, a lot.



Most of the system boards i've been looking at, if they have integrated video, there is no dvi output, just Dx-15. Since my newish lcd display has dvi input, I figure I should get a card with dvi out - to see the letters and numerals most clearly?



I wish I didn't have to use Vista aero, but I may have to get familiar with it.



I am going to have 2 computers, one as server and the other as a client because I am learning corporate networking and security.



I can also use tips on getting affordable windows server and window xp or vista operating systems. I just found out that if you buy vista and want to "downgrade" to xp - which I will need to do to run my scanner - i can't then dual-boot xp and vista so that I have genuine, and upgradable, version of both. Nor do I know how to use a non-genuine version without being discovered and having the partition shut down. It is either vista or xp, one or the other.
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#2 Old 02-07-2009, 03:04 PM
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I was doing my own thing quietly and YOU are the one who created this post trying to make a big deal out of it. Keep flaming the fire. That must be what you want.

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#3 Old 02-08-2009, 08:35 AM
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Thanks sleepydvdr. I copied everything you wrote to my notes.



Patch from third party host! I didn't know about that until now. Thanks.



I'm not having too much trouble using third party program to adjust partition size and dual boot. Although I am spending huge amounts of time on it. I didn't realize at first that there are 2 distinct ways to set up dual booting, the microsoft way, and the other way, used by all the third party partitioning programs. So my sys got all screwed up with a hybrid.



I was assuming PCIe-16.



But here is a typical description of expansion slots on sys board specs at newegg.com



PCI Express 2.0 x16 (1)

PCI Express x1 (4)

PCI Slots (2)



Note the PCI express 2.0 x16



I didn't realize there were 2 kinds of PCIe-16 slots. Can I assume that if a card just says PCIe-16 that I can put it in a PCIe2-16 slot? What about vice versa. If the card says PCIe2-16, can I put it in a slot that is PCIe-16?



I thought that I could rest, after learning how PCI slots were being added to sys boards, in addition to ISA slots. I can't remember the name of the kind of slot that they had before ISA but I seem to recall one. This stuff is changing faster than I can learn it. I almost feel like I am wasting my time trying to learn it because by time I learn it well enough to, for example, actually think I know enough to make an informed choice about buying a video card - everything I've learned doesn't apply any more.



I am also buying a sys board. Most of the dual-core or better ones don't seem to have integrated video, and those that do, the integrated video doesn't usually have a DVI output, so I need to learn about video also. However the sheer volume of the different chip sets being offered by what seem to be the only 2 players in the game, GeForce and Radeon, are staggering.



I was looking here as my starting place. Newegg is offering cheeaper cards but most of those seem to be missing something - like DVI port, or a fan and the reviews say they run hot.
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#4 Old 02-08-2009, 10:52 AM
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I took a look at this. It seems although there are only 2 major players in video chipset manufacturing, they each have a huge amount of different chip sets, the differences of which are hard to figure out. And the low end of the list is over $50 actual price. Seems you have to pay more than $50 if you want something better than the typical on-board video chipset.
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#5 Old 02-09-2009, 08:38 AM
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I was doing my own thing quietly and YOU are the one who created this post trying to make a big deal out of it. Keep flaming the fire. That must be what you want.

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#6 Old 02-09-2009, 11:44 AM
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Thanks again sleepdvdr for the valuable info, which I copied and pasted again.



Yes I like the newegg reviews.



I didn't look for GeForce 9500GT cards on newegg because I didn't see any listed on tomshardware pages linked to from the page I linked to, above.



Plus, while the Radeon chipset naming seems to follow a logical progression from lower capability to higher, the GeForce chipset names are all over the place and are totally confusing me.



I was looking at this card. Not so many "bad fan" complaints.
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#7 Old 02-09-2009, 12:04 PM
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For example toms says "GeForce 9600 GSO (aka GeForce 8800 GS)" Oh my glob. And is Geforce 9500GT better or worse than GeForce 9600GSO?



This is especially aggravating because some of the sys boards come with integrated video, and I don't know how to compare the video on different sys boards, or compare the video on a sys board with what plug-in video card.



Are all the Core 2 or better processors 64-bit processors? And I've heard Vista 64 bit is even more problem-ridden than Vista 32 bit. Plus I'm seeing all these boards that support core 2 or better processors yet they only support 4gig of ram.
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#8 Old 02-09-2009, 01:18 PM
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OK i've found some sys boards i like in the range of 105 to 120. No video on board but everything else. One has fireware and 8 sata ports and supports ddr2 mem and costs 105, has realtek ALC889A audio, the other no firewire, 6 sata, and ddr3, and realtek ALC888 audio, and costs 120. Not sure which way to go. Both have everything else the same, including RAID-capable south bridge, except a "silent pipe" somewhere, instead of a heatsink. I think 6 sata are plenty for awhile. Can I add firewire later? Yes. $15. I'm leaning toward thinking ddr3 is the future so go for it.



It has taken me 2 weeks just to learn about sys boards and video. I have barely started looking at processors yet.





Memory is no problem. Just go to crucial, see what the board needs, then check the price on it on a few other places (crucial itself usually does not offer the best price). Only thing, sneaky crucial gives you different part numbers on their site, than other retailer do, for the exact same chip. So you have to look at the specs very carefully, then see if the offering from the other retailer matches crucial's offering.
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#9 Old 02-09-2009, 05:01 PM
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It took me about 6 hours of searching all over the net before I finally found out that ddr3 wasn't worth the extra cost over ddr2. I must have read about 20 pages on the subject with little english, and lots of incomprehensible tables and graphs. Finally I found one page that said, in comprehensible English, that it cost a lot more and was maybe sometimes a just little faster.
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#10 Old 02-14-2009, 01:15 PM
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I was doing my own thing quietly and YOU are the one who created this post trying to make a big deal out of it. Keep flaming the fire. That must be what you want.

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#11 Old 02-14-2009, 03:26 PM
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All the core 2 duo processors say they are 64 bit. No?



i realize that to take advantage of that you need also a 64 bit op sys.
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#12 Old 02-22-2009, 12:28 PM
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All my parts arrived. I hooked them up. They work.
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