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Video card compatible with both emachine 1331 g & sims 3


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#1
jolieo

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Hi I bought my daugter the Sims 3 game , now I need to upgrade to a new video card. I've been searching all morning and I can't find any answers. I've changed hard drives, added memory but never messed with sound or video. i need help. I want to spend around $50 . While we are at it, what sound cards will upgrade me? Thanks Jolie
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#2
Digerati

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Sadly, you told us nothing about your computer. So we have no clue what graphics card your systems will support. And I note most motherboards have had integrated sound for many years - so normally a card is not needed.

That said, note for $50, you will not be getting much in the way of graphics horsepower. So if your that board does have sound, put that money towards a better card. See Best Graphics Cards for the Money - April 2011

Finally, note that graphics cards can easily be the most power hungry devices in the computer. Therefore, it is often necessary to upgrade the power supply with one with more power capability, as well as the necessary power connections.
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#3
jolieo

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My motherboard is eMachines (MCP61PM-GM). my processor is AMD Athlon™ II X2 250u Processor. HD 698gb (ST375052 8AS SCSI Disk Device). ram 3839mb. current video card NVIDIA GeForce 6150SE nForce 430. audio Realtek High Definition Audio. I have win 7. Thanks
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#4
Digerati

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Realtek High Definition Audio is a fine audio solution. If you don't like the sound quality, get better speakers first - unless you spend a big chunk on speakers, they usually are the limiting factor when it comes to fidelity. According to that motherboard's specs as seen here, that board supports PCIe x16 so that gives you lots of graphics card options.

Note you do not have a graphics "card". You have integrated graphics - that is, the graphics solution is integrated (on-board) with the motherboard. Install a just about any graphics card will likely improve over all system performance not only because today's computing is so graphics oriented, but because the card will likely have a better GPU and will come with its own dedicated RAM tweaked for graphics processing. Adding a card will also free up the system RAM the current on-board has stolen for graphics processing.

As I noted earlier though, a new card may require a bigger power supply and since eMachines is noted for budget builds, it is likely the existing supply was barely adequate when the system was new.

When researching a new card, look for minimum PSU requirements. Alternatively, you can use my canned text below for picking out supplies.

Use the eXtreme PSU Calculator Lite to determine the minimum and recommended power supply unit (PSU) requirements. Plan ahead and plug in all the hardware you think you might have in 2 or 3 years (extra drives, bigger or 2nd video card, more RAM, etc.). Be sure to read and heed the notes at the bottom of the calculator page. I recommend setting Capacitor Aging to 30% (see my note below), and if you participate in distributive computing projects (e.g. BOINC or Folding@Home) or extreme 3D animated gaming, I recommend setting both TDP and system load to 100%. These steps ensure the supply has adequate head room for stress free (and perhaps quieter) operation, as well as future hardware demands. Research your video card and pay particular attention to the power supply requirements for your card listed on your video card maker's website. If not listed, check a comparable card (same graphics engine and RAM) from a different maker. The key specifications, in order of importance are:

  • Current (amperage or amps) on the +12V rail,
  • Efficiency,
  • Total wattage.
Don’t try to save a few dollars by getting a cheap supply! Digital electronics, including CPUs, RAM, and today's advanced graphics cards, need clean, stable power. A good, well chosen supply will provide years of service and upgrade wiggle room. Look for power supply brands listed under the "Good" column of PC Mech's PSU Reference List. Another excellent read is Tom’s Hardware, Who’s Who In Power supplies: Brands, Labels, And OEMs. Note that some case retailers “toss in” a generic or inadequate PSU just to make the case sale. Be prepared to “toss out” that supply for a good one with sufficient power.

Most PSUs have an efficiency rating of around 70%. This means for every 100 watts of power a PSU draws from the wall, only 70 watts is delivered to the motherboard, with the rest wasted in the form of heat. The best supplies are 85 to 90% efficient, and as expected, cost more. I strongly recommend you pick a quality supply with an efficiency rating equal to or greater than 80%. Look for 80 PLUS and EnergyStar Compliant labels. 80 PLUS PSUs are required to have fairly linear efficiencies. This is important to ensure the PSU is running at or near peak efficiency regardless the load or power demands. Non-linear PSUs typically are most efficient when the load is in a narrow range between 70 and 90% of the PSU’s capacity and the efficiency may drop dramatically above and below those amounts.

Too big of a PSU hurts nothing but your budget. Your computer will draw from the PSU only what it needs, not what the PSU is capable of delivering. If a computer needs 300 watts it will draw 300 watts regardless if the PSU is a 400W, 650W, or 1000W PSU. In turn, the PSU, regardless its size will draw from the wall only what it needs to support the computer. In this example, it will draw 300 watts, plus another 45 – 90 watts, depending on the PSU’s inefficiency.

As noted, the eXtreme Calculator determines minimum and recommended requirements. If the calculator (with the changes I suggested) recommends a 400 watt minimum, a quality 400W supply will serve you just fine. However, a quality 550W – 600W supply will have, among other things, larger heat sinks to dissipate potentially more heat. It might have a larger fan too. The 400W supply will run most of the time closer to capacity, while the larger supply will be loafing along, rarely breaking a sweat. To help the smaller heat sinks get rid of the wasted 80 watts (20% of 400) of heat, the fan in the 400W supply may need to run full speed, while the fan in the larger supply, with bigger sinks just loafs along too – but in near silence. Also, it is typical for manufacturers to use higher quality parts, design, and manufacturing techniques in their higher power supplies.

Note: Capacitor Aging. All electronics “age” over time. Electrons flowing through components bang around and create friction and heat causing wear and tear, altering the electrical characteristics of the device. Over time, this weakens the device resulting in eventual failure. Power supplies have always suffered profoundly from aging effects resulting in a loss of capacity. In recent years, capacitor technologies have improved. The best PSUs use the best (and most expensive) capacitors which suffer less from aging effects than older capacitor types. If planning on buying a new, high-end PSU, setting capacitor aging to 10% may result in a more realistic recommendation. However, headroom “buffer” will be significantly reduced. You can expect your PSU to last 5 years or longer. Since it is better to buy too big rather than too small, and since it is hard to predict what your power requirements will be in 3 years, using 30% for Capacitor Aging ensures you have enough headroom for virtually any upgrade.

Don't forget to budget for a good UPS with AVR (automatic voltage regulation). Surge and spike protectors are inadequate and little more than fancy, expensive extension cords.


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#5
phillpower2

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If I may chip in with a suggestion Digerati

My motherboard is eMachines (MCP61PM-GM).

This card requires a minimum of a 350W PSU http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814131360 brand names often use
low power/low quality PSUs to keep costs down, hold off purchasing an add on card until the PSU has been checked.

EDIT: Just found the specs for the emachine 1331 g and the PSU will not support the suggested video card so it`s back to the drawing board!

•Multi-in-1 Digital Media Card Reader
•6 x USB 2.0 ports, 2 x PS/2 ports, 1 x VGA port, 1 x headphone jack, 1 x microphone jack, 6 x audio jacks, 1 x Ethernet (RJ-45) port
•300W AC power supply included Also note that there are various size computer cases in this range and the ultra slim version only has a 220W PSU, a visual check may be the only conclusive way of confirming the PSUs output.

@ jolieo I notice you have asked the same question on various forums, please let us know if you have found a compatible GFX card.

Edited by phillpower2, 07 May 2011 - 08:38 AM.

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#6
Digerati

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If I may chip in with a suggestion Digerati

Any time! :)
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