Planning to upgrade your Graphics Card? Read First...

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  1. Posts : 2,304

    Planning to upgrade your Graphics Card? Read First...

    The most common concern about upgrading your Graphics Card is: "will my PSU handle the new one?"

    That's why we're here to learn, in this sort of Tutorial i'll try to explain you guys what do you need to consider before buying a new Graphics Card and hopefully avoid any issues related to power consumption, power requirements and hardware-related requirements.

    I've divided this Tutorial in 4 steps:
    1) What do i want to do with my NEW Graphics Card? Do i want to Game a lot? Do i want to play Multimedia files? Do i want to do Graphics edition?

    Once you have in mind what you want to do, then you can move onto the next step in this tutorial.

    Here you'll find the links for:

    PassMark Software - Video Card Benchmarks - High End Video Cards

    PassMark Software - Video Card Benchmarks - Mid-Range Video Cards

    PassMark Software - Video Card Benchmarks - Low End Video Cards

    2) What's my monitor's resolution? and, would i like to hook it up to an external monitor?

    If your answer is YES, then you should check what resolution is that external monitor running.. Ex: 1920 x 1080 (1080p or 1080i) Higher Resolutions means, more powerful Graphics Card to run the same game! it's NOT the same playing "a" game with different resolutions.

    3) Will my PSU handle the new Graphics Card?

    To find out you'll need to open the side of your case and see the Sticker on the PSU, check the Amperage on the +12V Rail(s) and the total Wattage of the PSU.

    The sticker should look a little bit like this:

    Now what you have to do is check the Wattage and Amperage that your new Graphics Card needs and compare it to your PSU, Here:

    AMD/ATI CrossfireX

    No code has to be inserted here.

    AMD/ATI Single Card

    No code has to be inserted here.

    NVIDIA Multiple Cards

    No code has to be inserted here.

    NVIDIA Single Cards

    No code has to be inserted here.

    Once you've checked everything, do the numbers, does it work on your current PSU? go ahead and buy the Graphics Card! Not enough power from your PSU? Then go to step 4.

    4) Now you need to find a GOOD branded PSU with enough power to feed your hungry Graphics Card. Where could i buy it? Which brand?

    Here's a list you could check out:

    Good Quality: PC Power & Cooling, Cooler Master, SeaSonic, Silverstone, Enermax, Antec, AMS, Corsair, OCZ, Ultra, Thermaltake, Zalman, Sparkle.

    Low Quality: A-TOP, Aerocool, APEX, Apevia (Aspire), Asus, ATADC, Athena Power, ATRIX, Broadway, Deer, Delta, Diablotek, Dynapower, EagleTech, Enhance, Enlight, E-Power, FOXCONN, Futurepower, I-Star, In-Win, JPAC, Just PC, Kingwin, Linkworld, Lite-On, Logisys, Masscool, MGE, MSI, NMEDIAPC, Norwood Micro, NorthQ, Powmax, Q-Tec, SFC, Sintek, Shuttle, Skyhawk, Spire, Star Micro, STARTECH, TTGI, Wintech, XION, YoungYear, Zebronics.

    Disputed Brands: ABS/Tagan, BFG Tech, Coolmax, Hiper, HIPRO, Mushkin, NZXT, Raidmax/Sigma, Rosewill, Scythe, Sunbeam/Tuniq, Topower, XClio, XIGMATEK.

    Ok, i've decided which PSU Brand i want to buy, now... where could i buy it?

    That's it, 4 easy steps to upgrade a Graphics Card without any concerns. ENJOY

    I'll be editing it with more information as the other users post them here! so, post your opinions!

    Last edited by Punkster; 21 Mar 2011 at 12:40. Reason: Added GTX 590 Single/SLI wattage and amperage.
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  2. Posts : 7,470
    Windows 10 Home Premium 64bit sp1

    pretty good thread my current card takes 50 watts more then my previous 5770 which is not a bad jump
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  3. Posts : 88
    Windows 7 Home Prem x32

    Thanks for the info. I just got my Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 1GB yesterday. Running it off my Thermaltake TR2-500 with no problems.

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  4. Posts : 2,304
    Thread Starter

    Updated with HD 6950 Single/Crossfire Wattage and Amperage
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  5. Posts : 291
    Windows 7 Home Premium x64

    Where did you get those charts? I have a Thermaltake Toughpower 700W (modular supply) and it runs my GTX470 just fine

    I have a GTX 470, just haven't updated my system specs...
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  6. Posts : 138
    Windows 7 Ultimate x64

    look at the single card entry...?
    that suggests your psu should be fine. (550W needed)
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  7. Posts : 291
    Windows 7 Home Premium x64

    Packet said:
    look at the single card entry...?
    that suggests your psu should be fine. (550W needed)
    Ah, the formatting was a little off, made it tough to see that...
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  8. Posts : 11,425
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64

    Just FYI I've purchased two Ultra modular PSU's a X3 @600w and my current X4 @ 1050w both are 80% Silver rated and have worked flawlessly.
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  9. Posts : 2,304
    Thread Starter

    Disputed Brands (deemed to be of good quality, but needing referenced reviews or articles, or those with disputed quality, or varying quality of different models)
    Good to know that Ultra has been working flawlessly for you, that'll be a reference taken in this Tutorial, i'll be digging more into that Brand and hopefully i'll change it from disputed to good quality brands :)

    Thanks for your input!
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  10. Posts : 10
    Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit

    Amazing thread. And it came at such a perfect time. I was planning to buy a graphics card this week. I have finalized HD5670. Now I can go ahead without worrying if my 500W CM PSU will support it. Thanks mate.
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