What video card should I buy?
Thread poster: Claudia Alvis

Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:43
+ ...
Oct 10, 2006


I want to start using Dragon Naturally Speaking (Spanish Preferred Ed. 9) but I'm afraid my computer is too slow, so I want to upgrade my video card.

I currently have a NVIDIA RIVA TNT2 Model 64/Model 64 Pro which I think is very outdated. I have a Sony Vaio, Pentium 4, 1.79GHz and 512 of RAM, which gets very slow if I'm using too many applications at the same time.

I don't play any games, except for the occasional Sudoku online and I rarely watch DVD's in my computer. I don't want to go to a computer store because I'm afraid they'll try to sell me something too powerful/expensive that will be too much for me. So I was hoping you could help me out since I don't know anything about video cards.


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Jaroslaw Michalak  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:43
Member (2004)
English to Polish
Why video card? Oct 11, 2006

Why do you want to upgrade the video card? Off all the main components in your computers, this element will have the least impact on performance of Dragon NS, if any at all.

First of all, I would check your computer specifications to see if it is possible to install a better processor or more memory on your motherboard. If you provide details of your motherboard, it might be possible to give more specific advice.

[Edited at 2006-10-11 00:45]

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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:43
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Overall performance Oct 11, 2006

I was told that upgrading the video card would improve the overall performance of my pc, but as I said I don't know anything about video cards. Unfortunalty the RAM memory can only be expanded up to 512MB.

The specifications of my motherboard are:

Motherboard Properties:
Motherboard ID 09/28/2001-I845 -P4B-LX
Motherboard Name Asus P4B-LX

Front Side Bus Properties:
Bus Type Intel GTL+
Bus Width 64-bit
Real Clock 100 MHz (QDR)
Effective Clock 400 MHz
Bandwidth 3200 MB/s

Memory Bus Properties:
Bus Width 64-bit
DRAM:FSB Ratio 4:3
Real Clock 133 MHz
Effective Clock 133 MHz
Bandwidth [ TRIAL VERSION ] MB/s

Chipset Bus Properties:
Bus Type Intel Hub Interface
Bus Width 8-bit
Real Clock 67 MHz (QDR)
Effective Clock 267 MHz
Bandwidth 267 MB/s

Motherboard Physical Info:
CPU Sockets/Slots 1
Expansion Slots [ TRIAL VERSION ]
RAM Slots 2 DIMM
Integrated Devices IEEE-1394
Form Factor Micro ATX
Motherboard Size 240 mm x 240 mm
Motherboard Chipset i845
Extra Features [ TRIAL VERSION ]

Motherboard Manufacturer:
Company Name ASUSTeK Computer Inc.
Product Information http://www.asus.com/products1.aspx?l1=3
BIOS Download http://support.asus.com/download/download.aspx?SLanguage=en-us


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United States
Local time: 11:43
English to Spanish
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Good machine, perhaps memory upgrade before videocard Oct 11, 2006

[quote]Claudia Alvis wrote:

I was told that upgrading the video card would improve the overall performance of my pc, but as I said I don't know anything about video cards. Unfortunalty the RAM memory can only be expanded up to 512MB.

Hello Claudia -- According to the specs of the Mboard - The ASUS P4B-LX incorporates the Intel Pentium 4 processor in 478-pin package/Northwood processor coupled with the Intel 845 chipset to set a new benchmark for an effective desktop platform solution. Supporting up to 2 GB of system memory with PC100/133 unbuffered SDRAM, high-resolution graphics via an AGP 4X slot, high-speed data transfers using the ATA100 protocol, IEEE1394 Firewire features, LAN features, and AC '97 compliant audio features, the P4B-LX is your perfect vehicle to get ahead in the world of computing!

You have a very good machine as it is.

The memory can go UP TO 2 gigs, and the expansion slots you have 2 PCi and 1 AGPx4 – which means any ATI / NVIDIA card will do you good.

The question is WHY you want to upgrade a video card (3d rendering, 3d gaming?) because forte simple word processing and browsing the net any card will do.

If anything, get more memory RAM (168 pin, DIMM PC100/133) is about $75 per 512Mb.

Or a better sound card (AC 97 built in sound, it is O.K but not the best there is), the machine you have it is good enough to run this software without any complications.

If it is too slow, perhaps you have malware / spyware / adware in your machine making it crawl.

A. Pinzon – SpanishTech Spanish Translations Austin Texas

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Local time: 17:43
English to German
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I suggest ATI 9000 series Oct 11, 2006

Hi! all these cards support dual monitors and come in 64 bit and 128 bit architecture ideal for almost anything, memory scales from 64 mb onwards. I have been using these since over 10-12 years and they proved to have a long life-span. Ok here is a historical example, like Hewlett Packard in Printing technology it is ATI in video cards. They surely have other products as well, but I use these. Best Brandis

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Nizamettin Yigit  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:43
Dutch to Turkish
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RAM slots Oct 11, 2006


I agree with other advices.
I just wanted to say, if there are 2 RAM slots, and they used 2x256
then you may say it can not be upgradable.

If you want to upgrade, you need to remove these 256 RAMs and install 1 GIG SDRAM memory cards for each one and your machine becomes 2 gig.

If you want to upgrade video card as well:

Check first
- is your video card upgradable or not?
- what brand /and model of video cards are compatible with your Main Board. You can do that at ASUS web site.

For the slowness you can do many things. Here are some of them:

- increase virtual memory on HD
- emty Temporary files in your System folder (Temp. Internet Files)
- Set your browser to "delet all files when browser is closed"

Good luck

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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:43
+ ...
Thanks Oct 11, 2006

Thank you all for your suggestions. Unfortunately, my computer is an old model and the label clearly states that the memory can only be upgraded to 512MB (256x2). I called one of DNS resellers (not Nuance) and they told me that with my computer's specifications, the software would run very slowly; so I should get a new computer or change the motherboard before buying DNS.

Thanks again,

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